One of the questions that gets asked most often is “what is my hair type?” The hair typing system that is used most often was created by Oprah’s long time stylist Andre Walker. The typing system ranges from types 1 thru 4. 1 being straight hair, 2 wavy, 3 curly and 4 kinky. Within the four types there are also sub-types that further distinguish the amount of wave, curl or kink.
The typing system wasn’t developed as a hierarchical status measure and the lower the number shouldn’t be viewed as better than another. The way that I view this system is 1 being completely void of curl, and as the number increases more and more of the curl is present in the hair. Nothing more and nothing less.
Many naturals find it beneficial knowing their hair type, when it comes to product selections. Although as we all know, no two heads of hair are identical it still gives us a starting point when trying to understand your hair. Also note that one head can and most likely possesses multiple hair types. For instance my hair would predominately be classified as 4a; however, the front portion (bang area) of my hair has a looser 3c curl, and a small patch near my crown doesn’t really curl just very the ends do, and my curls have a nice range of diameters represented.
Below is a super simple chart showing the difference in curls (or lack thereof) in Andrea Walker’s hair typing system.