What Is Natural Hair Type 3 And 4?

What Is Natural Hair Type 3 And 4?

Do you ever find yourself wondering about the different types of natural hair? Well, you’re in the right place! In this article, we will explore the characteristics and care tips for type 3 and type 4 hair. Understanding your natural hair type is essential in order to properly care for and style your beautiful locks.

Type 3 hair is known for its loose curls, which can range from slightly wavy to more tightly coiled. These curls have a defined S-shape and are prone to frizz.

Type 4 hair, on the other hand, is characterized by its tightly coiled curls or kinks. This hair type is often referred to as ‘kinky’or ‘coily’and can vary in texture from fine and soft to wiry and coarse.

By knowing which hair type you have, you can tailor your hair care routine to meet its specific needs. So, let’s dive in and learn more about how to care for and style type 3 and type 4 natural hair!

Characteristics of Type 3 Hair

If you want to embrace your natural hair type, you’ll love the beautiful curls and waves that characterize Type 3 hair.

Type 3 hair is known for its moisture retention and curl definition. The curls are usually loose and range from S-shaped to spiral-shaped.

Type 3 hair can be further classified into three subcategories: 3A, 3B, and 3C.

Type 3A hair has large, loose curls that are usually shiny and well-defined. It tends to have a lot of body and is easy to style.

Type 3B hair has tighter curls that form a more defined S-shape. It may have a mix of textures, with some parts being more curly than others.

Type 3C hair has tight curls or corkscrew curls that are densely packed together. It has a lot of volume and can be prone to frizz.

Regardless of the specific subcategory, Type 3 hair requires proper moisture and care to maintain its curl definition and prevent dryness. Another closest hair type to this one is type 4 hair.

Characteristics of Type 4 Hair

If you have type 4 hair, you’ll notice that it has a coiled, zig-zag pattern. This hair type is known for its tight coils and can be quite fragile if not properly cared for.

Type 4 hair is further divided into two subcategories: 4A, which has a defined S-shaped pattern, and 4B, which has a more zig-zag pattern with less visible curls.

Coiled, zig-zag pattern

The coiled, zig-zag pattern of natural hair types 3 and 4 adds a beautiful and unique texture to your overall look. This hair pattern is characterized by tight coils that form a distinct zig-zag shape. It is common among individuals with African, Afro-Caribbean, and Afro-Latinx backgrounds. The coils give the hair a springy and voluminous appearance, creating a stunning visual effect.

One of the defining features of this coiled, zig-zag pattern is its versatility. The coils can be styled in various ways, allowing you to experiment with different looks. You can wear your hair in its natural state, showcasing the stunning pattern and embracing its uniqueness. Alternatively, you can try different hairstyles like twist-outs, braid-outs, or bantu knots to enhance the definition of the coils and add even more texture to your hair. The coiled, zig-zag pattern truly allows for creativity and self-expression, giving you the freedom to rock different hairstyles that suit your personal style and preference.

Overall, the coiled, zig-zag pattern of natural hair types 3 and 4 is a beautiful and distinctive feature that adds character to your look. Embrace the unique texture and experiment with different styles to showcase the versatility of your hair. Whether you choose to wear it in its natural state or try various hairstyles, your coiled, zig-zag pattern is sure to turn heads and make a statement.

Two subcategories: 4A and 4B

Get ready to embrace the stunning versatility of the coiled, zig-zag pattern with its two subcategories: 4A and 4B.

Whether you have type 4A or 4B hair, you’ll discover that each subcategory has its own unique characteristics and styling needs.

Here are some key differences between 4A and 4B hair:

  • Curl pattern: 4A hair has a defined S-shaped curl pattern, while 4B hair has a tighter, more zig-zag pattern.
  • Hair texture: 4A hair tends to have a fine texture, while 4B hair is usually wiry and coarse.
  • Shrinkage: 4A hair typically experiences less shrinkage compared to 4B hair, which can shrink up to 70% of its actual length.
  • Styling options: 4A hair is more prone to frizz and can be easily manipulated into different hairstyles. On the other hand, 4B hair requires extra care and moisture to maintain its shape and prevent breakage.
  • Styling products: Both 4A and 4B hair can benefit from moisturizing products such as leave-in conditioners, oils, and creams. However, 4B hair may require heavier products to provide enough moisture and definition.

To enhance the natural beauty of your type 3 or 4 hair, it’s important to find the right styling products that work best for your specific hair type. Experiment with different products and techniques to determine what works for you.

Embrace the uniqueness of your coiled, zig-zag pattern and celebrate the versatility it offers. Remember, every curl and coil is beautiful in its own way, so embrace your natural hair type and rock it with confidence!

Caring for Type 3 Hair

To care for your type 3 hair, it’s important to focus on moisturizing and defining your curls. Use a hydrating shampoo and conditioner. Follow up with a leave-in conditioner or curl cream to keep your hair moisturized and prevent frizz. Additionally, avoid using heat styling tools as much as possible to prevent heat damage and maintain the health of your curls.

Moisturizing and defining curls

Moisturizing and defining curls is essential when it comes to embracing and showcasing the beauty of natural hair types 3 and 4. These hair types tend to be more prone to dryness, so keeping them well-moisturized is crucial for maintaining healthy and vibrant curls.

To moisturize type 3 and 4 hair, it’s important to use effective techniques such as deep conditioning and the LOC (liquid, oil, cream) method. Deep conditioning involves using a moisturizing hair mask or conditioner and leaving it on for an extended period of time to deeply penetrate the hair shaft and provide intense hydration. This helps restore moisture, softness, and manageability to the hair.

Additionally, the LOC method involves layering different products on the hair to lock in moisture. Start by applying a leave-in conditioner, followed by a hair oil to seal in the moisture, and finish with a curl-defining cream to enhance and define the natural curls.

In addition to moisturizing techniques, using curl definition products can help enhance and showcase the natural curl pattern of type 3 and 4 hair. There are various curl defining products available in the market, such as curl creams, gels, and custards, that can help enhance and define curls. These products usually contain ingredients that provide hold, reduce frizz, and add shine to the hair.

When choosing a curl defining product, it’s important to consider the hair’s porosity and texture to ensure it works effectively. Applying the product to damp hair and scrunching it upwards towards the scalp helps encourage curl formation and definition. Using a diffuser attachment on a blow dryer or air-drying the hair can help set the curls and enhance their definition.

Overall, moisturizing and defining curls are important steps in the routine of caring for type 3 and 4 hair, as they help maintain moisture, enhance curl pattern, and showcase the natural beauty of the hair.

Avoiding heat damage

Protect your beautiful curls and prevent heat damage by using alternative styling methods that don’t rely on high temperatures. One effective way to do this is by using a heat protectant before applying any heat to your hair. A heat protectant is a product that creates a barrier between your hair and the heat source, reducing the risk of damage.

Before using any heat styling tools such as flat irons or curling wands, make sure to apply a heat protectant evenly throughout your hair. This will help minimize the negative effects of heat and keep your curls healthy and happy.

Another way to avoid heat damage is by air drying your hair instead of using a blow dryer. Heat from blow dryers can be extremely damaging to natural hair, leading to dryness, frizz, and breakage. Instead, allow your hair to air dry naturally.

After washing and conditioning your hair, gently squeeze out any excess water with a microfiber towel or an old t-shirt. Then, let your hair air dry completely without using any heat. This method may take longer, but it’s worth it to protect your curls from the damaging effects of heat.

Embrace your natural texture and let your beautiful curls shine without the risk of heat damage.

Caring for Type 4 Hair

Caring for Type 4 hair can be a challenge, but with the right techniques, it becomes a journey of self-love and beautiful curls. One of the essential aspects of caring for Type 4 hair is moisture retention. This hair type tends to be dry, so it requires extra hydration to maintain its health and elasticity. To keep your curls moisturized, it’s important to use a sulfate-free shampoo and a deep conditioner regularly. Look for products that contain natural oils like argan oil, coconut oil, or shea butter, as these ingredients are great for locking in moisture. Additionally, using a leave-in conditioner or a moisturizing cream can help keep your hair hydrated throughout the day. Remember to apply these products to damp hair for better absorption.

Another important aspect of caring for Type 4 hair is adopting protective hairstyles. These styles help to protect your hair from damage caused by manipulation, environmental factors, and excessive heat. Protective hairstyles include braids, twists, buns, and updos. These styles not only protect your hair but also give it a break from daily styling. When opting for protective hairstyles, make sure not to pull your hair too tightly, as this can lead to breakage and hair loss. It’s also important to give your hair regular breaks from these styles to prevent tension and stress on your scalp. By incorporating moisture retention techniques and protective hairstyles into your hair care routine, you can keep your Type 4 hair healthy, strong, and beautiful.

Styling Tips for Natural Hair

Try experimenting with different hairstyles and accessories to show off your unique personality and style. Natural hair offers endless possibilities when it comes to styling, so don’t be afraid to get creative! Whether you want to rock a sleek updo or let your curls flow freely, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Here are a few natural hair styles and protective hairstyles that you can try:

  • Twist Out: This popular style involves twisting your hair while it’s wet and letting it dry overnight. The next morning, carefully unravel the twists to reveal beautiful, defined curls.
  • Bantu Knots: Create small sections of hair and twist them into small knots. This style not only looks trendy but also helps protect your hair from damage.
  • Braids: Whether you opt for box braids, cornrows, or French braids, braiding your hair is a great way to minimize manipulation and maintain the health of your natural hair.
  • Headwraps and Scarves: If you’re looking for a quick and stylish way to protect your hair, try wrapping a colorful headwrap or scarf around your head. This not only adds a fashionable touch but also helps to protect your hair from environmental factors.

Remember, the key to styling natural hair is to be gentle and use products that promote moisture and hydration. Embrace your natural texture and have fun experimenting with different looks to find what suits you best.


So now you know all about natural hair types 3 and 4! These hair types have their own unique characteristics and require specific care to keep them healthy and beautiful.

Type 3 hair is curly and can range from loose curls to tight spirals. It tends to be prone to frizz and requires moisture to maintain its shape.

On the other hand, type 4 hair is coily or kinky and has a tight curl pattern. It often appears dense and requires extra moisture and gentle handling to prevent breakage.

To care for type 3 hair, it’s important to use moisturizing products and avoid heat styling tools that can cause damage. Regular conditioning and deep conditioning treatments are also essential to keep the curls defined and frizz-free.

When it comes to type 4 hair, moisture is key. Using a leave-in conditioner and sealing in the moisture with oils or butters can help keep the hair hydrated. Protective styles like braids or twists can also help to minimize manipulation and breakage.

Styling natural hair can be fun and versatile. For type 3 hair, try experimenting with different curling techniques or using a diffuser to enhance the natural curl pattern. Type 4 hair can be styled in a variety of ways, from twist outs to bantu knots to afros. The key is to be gentle when detangling and styling to avoid unnecessary breakage.

So embrace your natural hair type and have fun exploring different styles and products that work best for you!

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