Three women with different hair types

What Type of Hair Do You Have?

Why Hair Type Analysis Matters

Everyone’s hair is unique. When you analyze your hair type by color, texture, density and length, no two heads of hair are the same. When you’re choosing haircare products, hair styles, or hair color, it's important to understand your hair type and its specific characteristics.

As a hairstylist, I've experienced thousands of hair types. As an haircare expert and Trichologist, I make my haircare decisions based on the hair type analysis system. Hair type analysis makes it easy to recommend the best care for my client's hair.

If you know your hair type, it takes the guesswork out of choosing haircare products that will help you reach your haircare goals and achieve your best hair. That’s why I want to share how you can identify your unique hair type. 


Hair Type Analysis Step 1: What’s Your Hair Color Level?

The first step in hair type analysis is determining your color level. Haircare experts use a ten level color chart to identify the lightness or darkness of your hair strand. Your level represents the color you see and the combination of color molecules that exist inside your hair strands. 

 

 

If you’re thinking of coloring your hair, your natural hair color level will help you determine what hair color you can easily achieve. It also helps you to choose the best hair products for your hair type.

Your natural hair color also helps determine, on average, how many hairs you have on your head. Here’s what your strand count looks like for different hair colors:

  1. Blondes rank number 1 with nearly 150,000 strands.
  2. Brown and black hair comes second with around 110,000 strands.
  3. Redheads come in third with about 90,000 strands.

If your hair is red, the color molecules inside each strand are the largest of any hair color type. 

 

Hair Type Analysis Step 2: What’s Your Hair Density?

Your hair density falls into three categories – fine, medium and coarse. The main difference between fine and coarse hair is how many layers your hair strand has. Thicker strands have a medulla, which is the innermost part of the strand, along with more cuticle layers on the exterior. Density matters when formulating hair color, and choosing beauty products.

Type A: Fine Hair

Fine hair is often thin, soft, and delicate. It also tends to be shiny. This is because your scalp’s natural moisturizing oils (sebum) are able to travel easily down your fine hair strands.

Fine hair is the most sensitive of all the hair types. It breaks easily and is prone to flyaways. Here are some easy ways to protect your fine hair from damage:

Protect your fine hair from heat damage: if you are a fan of heat styling, make sure to protect your fine hair with a lightweight heat protectant like Mend. Mend absorbs deeply into your hair strand to hydrate, smooth the cuticle and protect it from heat-styling up to 450º. Because Mend delivers vegan collagen to your strands, it also helps to reduce the appearance of split ends.

Mend is the extra step your hair needs to reduce the appearance of split ends, protect hair from heat damage and prevent breakage.

Fine hair needs gentle, sulfate-free shampoo: look for a shampoo like Arey Wash that is free from harsh chemical cleansers like sulfates that can dry out all hair types.

Fine hair needs lightweight conditioning: fine hair can easily be weighed down by conditioners that contain heavy oils or silicones. We formulated our Smooth conditioner so that it hydrates all hair types without any heavy ingredients. The result, soft, balanced, shiny hair. 

With fine hair, the golden rule is “less is more”. That means using less product in general but also means using fewer damaging ingredients. That’s why all Arey products are free of hair and scalp-stressing ingredients like sulfates, parabens, phthalates, gluten, artificial fragrances and colors.

Type B: Medium Hair

Medium hair types are textured with lots of body. Here are some ways to keep medium hair hydrated and healthy:

Stretch the time between washing: even the gentlest shampoos can dry your hair if you wash too often. Use a powder dry shampoo like Wait A Sec to give your hair a break from washing. 

✅ Scrub don’t wash: medium and coarse hair types can have dense hair growth that traps dead skin cells and product residue around your roots. A regular deep cleanse with a scalp exfoliant like Scrub leaves your follicles clear from buildup and your scalp hydrated.

Dense hair can be difficult to style so if you are using a lot of heat tools, don’t skip the heat protectant.

Type C: Coarse Hair

Coarse hair tends to be curly, kinky or coily. It also tends to be dry. Here are the best ways to care for your coarse hair type:

✅ Use a hydrating treatment shampoo: a light balanced shampoo like Wash cleanses without drying your strands. It also contains ingredients that help delay and repigment grey hair.

Shampoo less often: use a powder formula dry shampoo like Wait A Sec to extend the time between shampooing. 

Like medium hair, coarse hair types need to use a heat protectant to protect your strands from heat damage. You will also benefit from regular use of a hydrating scalp detox like Scrub.

 

Hair Type Analysis Step 3: What’s Your Hair Texture?

Your hair texture is classified as straight, wavy, curly or extra curly. What adds complexity to texture is density. Having extra curly, coarse hair is just as possible having as extra curly fine hair.

By understanding your natural texture, you can choose the best products and styling techniques to temporarily enhance or completely change it. Texture is the characteristic of your hair strand that you can have the most fun with. Styling tools allow you to change your texture from one day to another.

  

Color + Density + Texture = Your Unique Hair Type

Here are a few texture combinations and product recommendations for three particular hair types:

Natural Hair Color Level 5 / Fine Density / Curly Texture

Fine, curly hair tends to be dry. For bouncy, hydrated curls you need to focus on boosting moisture.

✅ I recommend brushing dry hair before washing to move as many natural oils as possible to the dryer ends.

✅ Boost moisture and protect your delicate ends by applying conditioner or oil to your ends before shampooing.

✅ Apply your gentle cleansing shampoos to your scalp so that you don’t over cleanse or remove oils from the ends.

✅ Use a lightweight leave-in conditioner like Mend to hydrate and protect your hair in between washing days.

✅  Limit your hair washing days to 1-2 times a week.

Your fine/ curly combination is particularly vulnerable to damage from heat styling. Make sure you keep your tools on the lowest setting possible.

 

Natural Hair Color Level 8/9 / Thick Density / Straight Texture

Blondes tend to have oilier hair. That means not overcleansing your hair or overloading it with heavy products.

 I would recommend using a powder dry shampoo after you wash and dry your hair. Because blondes have the most hair strands, that means you also have the most sebaceous glands and your hair can get greasy. Proactively adding an oil-absorbing powder dry shampoo like Wait A Sec from day one lets you get ahead of the buildup and turn it into texture.

✅ Shampoo around 3-4 times a week and finish with a lightweight leave-in conditioner that won't weigh your strands down.

✅ Add in a weekly scalp exfoliant to clear any greasy buildup on your scalp, and to help clear the way for better hair growth.         

 If you regularly use heat-styling tools, make sure you protect your ends with a heat protectant.

 

Natural Hair Color Level 6 / Medium Density / Wavy Texture

Did you know that only 2 percent of humans have red hair? If your hair is red it’s because of a genetic mutation in your MC1R gene. Red hair also has larger color molecules that don’t live as deep in the hair strand. This makes your red hair vulnerable to fading from sun exposure.

✅ Use a sunscreen for your hair like Live In Mist leave-in conditioner that provides UV protection that will helps you keep your red strands radiant.

✅ Always use a gentle shampoo like Wash that has no color-fading sulfates

✅  Stick to lightweight conditioners. Using a deep conditioner or mask could add too many moisture molecules to your strands, which can force red hair color molecules from the hair strand. 

Your unique red hair type also grey in its own special way – red hair tends to fade rather that streak with silver like other hair colors. You can proactively guard against fading from greying with Arey’s daily supplement Not Today, Grey that slows, delays and even repigments grey hair naturally.

 

Delay the Grey for Every Hair Type with Arey’s Science-Backed Haircare

Whatever your hair type, it's important to give your locks the nutrition they need. Regardless of your hair color, texture or density, taking our daily supplement Not Today, Grey can help provide your hair with hair-growth boosting vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Along with using To The Root, you are preparing your hair to stimulate cellular activity that can preserve your natural color, and even re-pigment greys. 

 

At Arey, We Care About Your Hair Health

We want to make it easy for all hair types to have your best hair that’s why we offer 25% off on all subscriptions. We believe that science + consistency = results.

We are Arey.

Have questions? Send us an email hey@areygrey.com or go to our FAQ page. 

 


Jay Small with customer

AuthorJay SmallJay Small is a sought-after hair stylist and Trichologist in Los Angeles with over 22 years of experience. His clients consist of high-profile business and creative leaders. He trained as an apprentice to the owner of Paul Mitchell and worked in education and product development for Paul Mitchell Systems. Jay is incredibly passionate about the creative process both in terms of styling hair and developing effective products.