Did you know that a good knowledge about what your hair type really is could spell the difference in the kinds of products that you buy and how your hair will look in the end? To have a well-rounded knowledge of your own head of hair, read these five simple tips that tackle the five basic elements of hair typing!
Tip 1: Twirl to Make a Curl
Twirl a lock of hair around your index finger and release it. Study the form taken by the lock once you release it to know if you have tight, smallish curls, wavy or loose curls, or cascading waves. This tells you what the actual curl pattern of your hair is, and is helpful in determining the kind of shampoo and leave- on product to use if you
a) want to emphasize your curls, or
b) tame them.
Tip 2: Tie for Texture
Tie your hair up in a ponytail and observe how thick it is when gathered at the base. If the entire “grab” is barely thicker than one finger, you may have fine hair. Two to three fingers, you are most likely in the normal range. Any more than that, you are probably in the coarse range. If you have fine hair, you may need shampoo that is just light and leaves no buildup. If your hair is on the thicker side, a protein-packed shampoo may be required. Always keep this information in mind, even if you need shampoo for sensitive skin.
Tip 3: Double Count for Density
Estimate how many strands you have by checking your hair fall – either on your brush or on the floor when you sweep it. If there’s a lot on either or both, you may have scalp issues. You probably have sensitive skin or scalp, and the best shampoo for sensitive skin or scalp is one that answers this condition to prevent even more hair loss.
Tip 4: The After-Bath Porosity Check
Ask yourself: How difficult or easy it is for your hair to retain moisture – whether after conditioning or using a leave-on product. The more difficult it is for your hair to retain moisture, the higher up you go on the porosity scale. It means your hair is also more damaged and exposed to chemical treatments, and thus has difficulty retaining water. This means you need to give your hair a break from treatments (or opt for shampoo and conditioner for sensitive skin, as well as organic and natural hair care products) for it to go several levels lower on the porosity scale.
Tip 5: Pull for Elasticity
When hair is wet, give it a firm yet gentle pull to check how far out the strand will stretch. If it stretches at least 50%, it’s healthy. Less than that will mean it is damaged and highly prone to breakage. If so, ease up on tools used to tweak hair or tying your hair up. Doing so will only exacerbate the condition.
So, how does your hair fare in terms of curl, texture, density, porosity and elasticity? Now that you know, it is so much easier to figure out which hair care products to buy!