Close your eyes and describe your hair. What comes to mind? Chances are, it’s a mixture of words like ‘curly,’ ‘thick,’ ‘dry,’ ‘oily,’ ‘straight,’ etc. Could you describe your hair with just one adjective? No – at least not completely. This simple exercise demonstrates a profound fact: our hair is complex.
The Andre Walker Hair Typing System was one of the first and most widely accepted methods to categorize hair using a system of letters and numbers. The ‘Walker System’, as it is known, primarily describes curl pattern and ranges from 1A, which is totally straight, to 4C, which is tightly coiled or curled. Although wildly popular in the curly community, this system has generated an increasing amount of controversy, due to the fact that those with textured hair are beginning to question the wisdom of categorizing hair on curl pattern alone. While the simplicity of the system offers convenience and accessibility, it also glosses over many important characteristics, like texture, porosity, and dryness and places undue importance on curl pattern.
Identifying your curl pattern is helpful, but it’s not the whole story. To really understand the hair, we need to listen to what it’s telling us. The next time you’re tempted to describe your hair in terms of curl pattern or perceived deficits, think instead of what your hair likes and does not like. Does it prefer heavier, richer products? Does it look best on the second day after a wash? Do products tend to build up on the outside of the hair or absorb easily into it? The answers to these questions give you a simple and straightforward way to understand your hair, without getting bogged down in labels and numbers.
At Original Moxie, everything from our product development to our 3D Diagnostic System is designed around all the messy details that make your hair unique. We do not fit our clients into boxes or label them with one-dimensional tags. Instead, we encourage you to ‘think outside the curl’ and see your hair for what it truly is.
Have questions about your own hair type and want to find out more? Contact Original Moxie Founder, Rachel Blistein, for a free, personalized consultation at firstname.lastname@example.org.