Understanding the Difference Between Hair Types

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Did you know that your hair type is unique? Even though you belong to a specific category, such as having thick or thin hair, your hair will still exhibit exceptional qualities. Therefore, it makes understanding different hair types more difficult. But the fact that you know your hair type to better care for it adds to the complication.

To make it easier for you to know and understand your hair type, you should learn the characteristics of various hair types. This will provide more clarity when it comes to knowing the most suitable hair care routine:

Hair Texture

This is one characteristic of hair types that you probably hear much of. You can consult your hairstylist for them to see and evaluate your hair texture. Or, you can do a simple test yourself at home.

The first thing you should do is cut a sewing thread about the same length as your hair. Choose a regular type of thread instead of the thicker, heavy-duty ones. Then, pull out a strand of your hair (make sure it is a whole strand rather than breaking it in the middle). Make sure that the hair is dry and does not contain any styling product when you do this. Then, place the strand of your hair next to the sewing thread, preferably on a white background, so that you can see the comparison. Use the thread as a vantage point. If your hair is thinner than the thread, then your hair texture is light. You have a medium texture if it is of the same thickness levelency. But if your hair is thicker, you have a thick texture.

Hair Density

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Your hair density is one of the main characteristics determining one hair type from another. To examine your hair density, look in front of a mirror and hold your hair right where it parts. The thickness of your hair is determined based on the number of strands that cover your scalp. How much of your scalp can you see once you part your hair? When you can’t see much of your scalp on your part, then you have thick density. When you can see a little of the scalp, you have medium thickness. But when a large portion of your scalp is exposed, you have a thin consistency. Make sure you perform this test in more than one spot of your hair to validate.


Porosity refers to your hair’s ability to absorb and retain moisture. It is an important characteristic of your hair since water is essential to maintaining healthy hair. Knowing your hair’s porosity is crucial to provide the right hair care approach.

You can check your hair’s porosity by doing a simple test: taking a strand of hair and letting it float onto a bowl of water. Observe what happens to your hair. If the strand does not sink, it means you have low porosity. But you have medium porosity if your hair takes a while to fall. Moreover, you have high porosity if your hair falls to the bottom as soon as you drop it into the water.


Elasticity is an important quality you should consider when caring for your hair. The elasticity varies according to different hair types. Hence, you should perform an elasticity test on your dry hair. Hold a strand of hair and pull at opposing ends. Do so gently so you can observe how the strand stretches. The goal is to see how much stretch your hair can take before it breaks.

High elasticity is characterised by hair types that take a while to break. Meanwhile, medium elasticity is when your hair reaches a certain level of stretch before breaking. Lastly, your hair might not be decisive when it breaks immediately after you try to stretch it.

Curl Pattern

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This is the last and final determiner of your hair type and is relatively simple to assess. You can use the curl size and the pattern of your hair to know your curl pattern. Straight hair is when your strands have no curve in them at all. Meanwhile, wavy hair is when there are wave patterns to your strands. You have curly hair if your strands have an S-shape to them. And coyly hair is those that have kinky strands or that form a tight coil.

Based on the information above, do you know your hair type?

Abigail is a travel enthusiast who enjoys trying new foodie destinations. She graduated with a degree in Creative Writing and has worked as a web content writer since 2010. She enjoys writing about travel, lifestyle, beauty, hair care, and wellness.

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