What in the entire heck are people talking about when they say 3a? 4b? Are you confused when you hear people ask you what your Curl Pattern is and have no clue how to answer? Continue reading for a simple breakdown of what a Curl Pattern is so you can answer next time somebody asks.

Curl Patterns by TheMixedMamaBlog


What in the world are Curl Patterns?

First… why ask about Curl Patterns?

When people ask this its because curly hair comes in all shapes and sizes. Curl Patterns are a “Texture Typing System” that helps to narrow down a persons curls and its needs. Because curly hair can be wavy, curly, and/or kinky it also comes with its own set of struggles.

  • Wavy Hair (2a / 2b / 2c) tends to need products that are light and control frizz.

  • Curly Hair (3a / 3b / 3c) also usually needs frizz control and something to define the curls.

  • Kinky Hair (4a / 4b / 4c) needs and craves moisture and tangles easily.

Second… how do I figure out what curl pattern I (or my kid) has?

There are multiple Texture Typing systems out there but the one I like is this one that NaturallyCurly.com talks about. If you want to see a lovely infographic that includes pictures of actual women’s hair as well then I would check out this post of theirs.

Curl Patterns by The Mixed Mama BlogBasically you want to look at your hair closely and compare to the curls in the image above. Keep in mind hair can have a mix of curl patterns as well. Once your figure this out you are on the path of knowing your hair more and on the journey of figuring out and loving your (or your kids) hair more!

My Daughter _ Mixed Kid _ Curly Hair _ On Graduation

My daughter has a mix of 3b & 3c hair, possibly crossing over into 4a as well. We struggle with keeping the frizz under control as well as defining the curls towards the top of her head (closer to the roots) along with also keeping moisture in. Because she has SOOO MUCH hair we also struggle with tangles. I told you…. hair can come in multiple types and multiple issues to control. And of course my girl has them all. Lol.

Good luck and I hope this helps you out. Let me know if you have any questions down below. I would love to help you try to figure out what Curl Type your kids has. Feel free to send me an email with a picture of their hair or tag me on social media (@themixedmama).

Thanks for reading!

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