Type 4 natural hair care: How do you keep type 4 hair moisturized?
How can I hydrate my type 4 hair? Type 4 hair texture is the characteristic thin and fine or wiry and coarse hair that is extremely fragile. This hair type is common among people of African decent. It’s full densely packed tight coils are often described as “kinky.” Although people often think coily hair is robust, due in part to it’s high shrinkage rate. Type 4 hair shrinks from 25% to 90% of it’s actual length. In reality, coily hair is the most fragile hair type due to having fewest cuticle layers protecting it from dryness. Shrinkage therefore maintains moisture, elasticity and minimizes breakage. I personally wear pony tails a lot and rarely apply any heat to my hair. I use an age old African threading plate to straighten my hair on wash day.
Type 4A hair is full of tight coils. Your coils are either fine or wiry with the circumference of a crochet needle.
They’re still dense and springy with a notable S pattern when stretched much like type 3 curly hair.
- While 4B hair on the other hand has a less defined pattern of curls and looks more like a “Z.” This hair type bends with very sharp angles instead of coiling or curling. The curl is tighter and far less defined, having the circumference of an ink-pen. The strands range from wiry and coarse to fine and thin.
- Hair Type 4C is as densely packed as 4B, just with less definition as well as more shrinkage. The hair texture, which is tightly coiled like all Type 4s, ranges from super fine and soft to coarse and wiry. It’s incredibly delicate hair.
- The top hair concerns with type 4 hair are avoiding tangles, maintaining moisture, and fighting off shrinkage. Shrinkage to me is not a concern but a bit frustrating for most. It can be hard to enjoy or appreciate our natural hair if we cannot see the progress. Below are some suggestions. Bear in mind the porosity of your natural hair will be a determining factor in how those delicate follicles absorb and retain moisture.
- Keep type 4A natural hair moisturized by using natural emollients with a thicker consistency, like shea butter. This will ensure you get the most out of your twist out or wash-and-go after you wash.
- As for type 4B hair, moisturize by doing a pre-poo coconut oil treatment to retain your scalp’s natural chemistry.
- Moisturize type 4C by using a humectant with a creamy consistency as a leave-in conditioner.More Tips
- Use a true moisturizer that has water as 1st or 2nd ingredient.
- Seal in moisture with an oil like Shea butter, castor oil, argan oil or avocado oil.
- Avoid heat like the plague
- Keep your hands out of your hair.
- Sleep with a satin bonnet or pillow.
- Deep condition regularly, at least once a week and no less than twice a month