The Ultimate Guide to Curly Hair: Identify Your Curl Type and Learn How to Maintain It

5min Read

The Ultimate Guide to Curly Hair: Identify Your Curl Type and Learn How to Maintain It

Depending on how much you know about your crown, finding the right products for your curls can either be really exciting or daunting. Is it wavy, curly or coily? If you’re unsure, no worries! Identifying your curl type can help match you with your next holy grail product. Not only will you know what works for you, you’ll also know what doesn’t and why. Keep reading to find out your curl type and the best hair care products for keeping your hair healthy & curls defined.


How to Identify Your Hair Type?

Although hair can be a wide variety of textures, shapes and lengths - figuring out your hair type is not as difficult as it may sound. There's a type system created by Andre Walker, Oprah Winfrey's stylist in the 1990s, to guide you through. Your general curl type can be identified by pattern and texture which are categorized by numbers and letters within this system. Straight hair falls in category number 1, wavy hair falls in category number 2 and curly and coily hair falls in category numbers 3 and 4.

Within each numerical category, curl patterns are narrowed down further with the use of letters A, B and C. For example, someone with bone straight hair may identify with having a 1A hair type. Another example is, someone with a tight coily hair pattern may identify with having a 4C hair type. The best way to narrow down your hair type is to examine freshly washed, product free, air-dried hair.


Type 2 Hair: Wavy Hair

Wavy hair can be identified when a washed and dried hair strand or small section of hair shows a slight ‘S’ shape or wave. It is considered to be neither straight nor curly and if you’ve found yourself stuck in the middle, this may be your type.

Type 2A hair can sneakily be disguised as straight hair when wet but when it dries, you will begin to see a slight wave forming just around the tip of your ears.

Type 2B hair holds more of that ‘S’ shape that is deeper than 2A but not tight enough to be considered a curl.

Type 2C hair demonstrates a clearly defined ‘S’ and can be easily mistaken for a type 3 doppelganger. 



This hair type can experience a lot of frizzy hair days or overall flatness. Rest assured, these two wavy hair products can help! Shedavi’s Hair & Scalp Growth Elixir can aid in promoting the growth and nutrition your type 2 hair is craving. To reduce flatness and frizz, before your hair dries try Shedavi’s Revitalizing Mist  to define and moisturize those waves. Lastly, avoid heavy oils, creams, and gels that can weigh your hair down, making it lose shape or volume. 


Type 3 Hair: Curly Hair 

Type 3 Hair ranges from light to tight curls that can differ in texture and definition. Type 3 hair has more volume than type 2 hair because it does not lay flat at the root. Instead, the roots have a 'Z' or tight 'S' shape contributing to the appearance of volume and height.

Type 3A hair is known to have big, loose curls and loops with the circumference of a piece of thick sidewalk chalk or a hand-held microphone.

Type 3B hair is bouncy and springy. The loop shape can resemble the circumference of a candlestick or your fav lip balm

Type 3C hair is the most springy of this type. Its tightly-coiled texture can easily wrap around a pencil giving a corkscrew appearance.



This curl type has all the perks of appearing big and voluminous, can be prone to frizz just like Type 2 hair, while also experiencing dryness and shrinkage.

Wondering which curly hair products are the best for your type 3 hair? Our Healthiest Defined Hair Bundle can take care of that for you! Keep those curls clean, light, bouncy and frizz-free with our Moisturizing Shampoo and Shedavi’s Revitalizing Mist. Take your definition to new lengths with our Wash + Go styling Gel and finally keep those curls coming in long and strong with Shedavi’s Hair & Scalp Growth Elixir. Avoid heat and products that may be too heavy for your naturally bouncy curls.


Type 4 Hair: Coily Hair or Kinky Hair 

Type 4 hair structure is the curliest and coiliest of all 4 hair types. Its tightly packed coils can be fine and thin or thick and coarse. It has a super high spring factor!

Type 4A hair is looser than the other type 4s but tighter than type 3. It experiences more shrinkage than type 3 and its shape is a tighter and more coiled ‘O’ shaped curl.

Type 4B hair shape takes on a zig-zag 'Z' pattern rather than the 'S' or 'O' shape which is what makes it different from 4A and 4C. Shrinkage, definition, and dryness can be an issue for this hair type. 

Type 4C hair has 70% shrinkage or more making it the tightest curl pattern. 4C hair is delicate, does not retain moisture easily, and coils don't clump together like other curl patterns. It has a very tight 'O' shape when defined. Infusing moisture, stretching the hair, and low manipulation are essential when it comes to styling 4C hair. 



Since type 4 hair experiences shrinkage, tangles, and sometimes a lack of moisture, this should be the primary focus when shopping for products. Its condensed texture makes it hard for the natural oils from your scalp to travel throughout the strands.

Keeping these concerns in mind, we think Shedavi’s Everything Bundle will target these hair needs while promoting its health and growth. The Moisturizing Shampoo Conditioner gently cleanses while hydrating your tresses. The Revitalizing Mist gives an extra moisture boost to your coils whenever you need it. The Wash + Go Styling Gel helps control frizz and defines your coils, especially when you’re in the mood to swap your fro for a springy twist out. Lastly, our Protein Masque and Growth Duo make sure your hair is strong, shiny, and healthy for your next style. 


Regardless of your hair type, the best thing you can do is to embrace your natural curls and keep them happy and healthy. Give them EXACTLY what they need to thrive and shop Shedavi products to ensure you look good, feel good, and be good everyday!

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