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3c Curly (Tight Curls)

If your wet hair looks slightly wavy to straight and your dry hair appears curly, then you fall into this category. 3c hair has very fine tight curls can easily be blown dry and straightened. The curl pattern tends to go from tight corkscrew curl to kinky curl.

Hair Type 4 is kinky hair. Believe or not, it’s the most fragile hair type. You want to make sure you cleanse your hair softly, detangle gently, and avoid damaging chemicals.

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  • kidole

    This really isn’t accurate! Andre doesn’t go by this hair classification system, he has his own. You forgot 4b hair and the pics of Alicia and Corinne are not good examples because their hair is curled in both pics so it’s not their natural curl pattern.

  • Sister 2

    @kidole, the article is pretty accurate to me. The pictures shown are visuals meaning to let you know how each hair type looks. 4b is Eperaldza Spaulding’s hair. Move along hater!

  • Lola

    altough I don’t rely too much on the whole hair classification system,I think it has its use.I will have to agree with Kidole:the pictures did not corroborate the hair types,and I feel they were not very well explained/described.

  • Sister 2

    Figuring out your hair type isn’t rocket science. I think all the hair types are explained 3c means your hair is curly, 4a you have a S shape to your curl. 4b you have a Z shape to your curl. What else is there to explain? It’s that simple.

  • OohLaLa


    Neither Alicia Keys nor Corinne Bailey Rae’s hair is NATURALLY that loosely curled. That’s the point. C&C should have used photos that depicted their natural curl pattern. It’s not rocket science, but if you’re new to “hair-typing,” an accurate photo would have been useful.

    And stop calling people haters. What, are you 12? Just because someone doesn’t agree with you doesn’t make them one. Smh

  • Sister 2

    @OohLala, this is why some black people get on my nerves. I can say what I want to say because I have the freedom to do so. How do you know how Alicia Keys or Corinne Baliey’s hair looks natural? Unless you know them personally, you have no idea.

    Who cares about hair typing anyway? I don’t know none of you and I wouldn’t care to know none of you. Smh to that.

  • hehe

    Ppl on the internet love using the word hater in relation to opinions other than theirs.

  • diggy

    I’m new to hair typing, and I have to say these pictures are a bit confusing

  • kidole

    @Sister 2 I understand that the pics are supposed to be visuals of the respective hair type they represent but they are not accurate. I’ve read interviews in which Corinne describes how she plaits her hair get that look in the pics. If you’ve followed Alicia’s career, her hair is naturally very bouncy and curly and in the pic above her curls are the results of using a curling iron. All the women have beautiful hair and so do I. What exactly am I hating on?

  • Xta28

    I will have to agree with @kidole. This isn’t accurate because hair typing is from unaltered hair pattern. Alicia Keys has what resembles a roller set and Corinne something similar to a twist out. Its hard to tell what type your hair is when pictures of hair patterns that have been set are used. Esperanza’s picture is the only one that is accurate for typing examples.

  • ladyharp

    there isn’t enough variety in the hair types presented. from length, style, to hair grade. they don’t seem very far from each other at all. not to make this a complexion issue but all of these women are lighter in complexion. with sites like this its important not to exclude any brown women. this isn’t a bad posting but seems a bit rushed maybe?

    this conversation could go many places but it isn’t necessary. just a distraction from the real. when the tune stops its really just about understanding what works for you as an individual. hair and all.

  • ladyharp

    SN: and brown is referencing all Black women.

  • Phoenix

    I agree, I have been natural all of my life and there are black people who have naturally straight hair. My hair is a 3b/3c. My sister is 2b, those pictures are not accurate depictions of the “hair typing” system. They should’ve went to to see accurate photos.

  • Bren

    I agree! The measurements are not accurate! I have 4B hair and let me tell you, it is NOTHING like Esperanza Spalding’s (a multi-ethnic musician who probably really does not have 4B hair: it’s just that her hair is combed/picked out into an Afro).

  • Bren

    I think that CurlyNikki is more accurate when it comes to showing examples of different hair types, as far as in its unaltered state.

  • virago

    I’m gonna have to agree with the commentors above. This isn’t at all accurate. The article states that 3c curls are fine…they can be. They can also be course or medium. The number/letter system describes size of curl and NOTHING ELSE. Wavy types (2’s) can also have kinky hair. There are no finite characteristics that belong to any hair type. ‘Ti’s all

  • Mo

    “Our hair falls into three categories: 3c, 4a, and 4b” is completely inaccurate and the celebrities you choose aren’t true representations of those hair types. Black hair comes in many textures. My hair is a 3B texture and last time I checked I’m black. Sorry but this article needs revising.

  • Trey

    how is it that every girl in the pictures used to depict afro textured hair are biracial? i mean the hair of all three of the women pictured is only a small subset of the type of textures that are represented among those with afro textured hair. this article is a bit misleading as to what each hair type actually is and how it behaves. SOMEBODY PLEASE GET KIMMAYTUBE TO FIX THIS!

  • Mary

    This articule is awful and very inaccurate and misleading.
    1. All of the artists are Mixed race
    2. Corrine rai bailey is wearing a braid ou
    3. I consider mself to be a 4B but I do not have Z shaped hair but my hair looks more like Esperanza but even tighter and grows up not down. The hair typing system is flawed

  • Sembene

    I definitely have a multitude of textures–loose and curly at the nape of my neck and above my ears. Tight and coily to top and back of my head and defying description to the front of my hair. I haven’t mastered styling all these textures, but I’ve learned to love and accept them all.