It’s essential to know your hair type. You can choose products and cuts designed for your specific needs to maintain optimal health, condition, and style. As a barber, determining hair type will determine what tools and products I use to achieve the desired cut or style. While you can ask your barber or stylist to help identify your type, there are some easy ways to figure it out. Using some common categories, we can describe types by texture, porosity, curl pattern, density, etc.
Porosity is the measure of how well your hair absorbs moisture. High porosity means that your hair absorbs a lot, but it doesn’t retain it. Medium porosity is a steady rate of absorption and retention. Low porosity is when your hair has trouble absorbing moisture, but once it’s there, it stays well.
Low porosity typically looks healthier and shinier and is not as prone to split ends. High porosity hair would greatly benefit from creamy butters and rich oils to help retain and lock in moisture.
Hair density measures the strands per square inch…so how thick is your hair? We say it is either low, medium, or high density. To measure your density at home, generally, a medium-average is a ponytail that is 2-3 inches in diameter. Less would be considered low, and more would be regarded as high.
Ethnicity can affect the average person’s density. (Measured at the crown) The typical density of Caucasian hair is 1,458 hairs per square inch—Hispanic averages 1,148 and African at 961. Age is a factor; as we age, we lose density in our hair. Healthline has a great article on hair density for further reading, “What Is Hair Density and Why It Matters.”
With low-density hair, product weight, and residue would be a concern. With high-density hair, you would want something with good hold.
A lot goes into typing your hair correctly. By identifying your hair type, you can be sure to use products that will work for you and your specific needs to help you reach your styling goals! You will be able to create a realistic, easy to manage grooming routine for your everyday needs!
Knowledge makes you sharp on the inside. Applying it makes you sharp on the outside!
Let’s set the record straight! Here are some of the most common shaving, skin and haircut misconceptions we hear about. We understand the concerns but want to offer some truth!
MYTH 1 Shaving makes your hair grow back thicker and darker!
We have always heard people say that shaving will make your hair grow back faster, thicker, or darker. This is simply not true. A shaved or cut hair has a blunt tip, making it look or feel that way. But remember, that cut is above the surface. The root of the hair remains the same, and continues the same growth pattern as before the shave or cut. Only hormones and genetics determines the true growth rate and how many follicles a person has. This fantastic article in The Star Telegram talks specifically about this myth in detail.
MYTH 2 Dry scalp and dandruff are the same thing.
Another myth we hear is that dandruff and dry scalp are the same. They look similar, but dandruff is an imbalance of yeast on the scalp. A dry scalp is just skin that is simply dehydrated, lacking moisture.
Dandruff will need a special shampoo with antifungal ingredients to treat. The two most common active ingredients are zinc pyrithione and selinium sulfide. Natural ways to treat dandruff could include using tea tree oil or aloe vera. After the dandruff is under control, just use regular moisturizing shampoo. Check out this anti-dandruff shampoo by GKHair.
A dry scalp can be caused by sebaceous glands producing less oil for the scalp. Environmental elements, hot showers, or certain products can be the cause. A moisturizing shampoo and leave-in conditioner can bring relief.
Ask your barber about products they recommend for your scalp issues. Dandruff and dry scalp will have different treatment plans and your barber can help find you a quick fix.
MYTH 3 You should use Vaseline to moisturize your scalp.
MYTH 4 Cutting a baby's hair will change the texture!
We understand it's hard to let go of long held beliefs. Knowing the truth can help you break old habits because Knowledge makes you Sharp on the Inside. Applying it makes you Sharp on the Outside!
Aaron & Kristi Brown, Authors
Aaron Brown is a Master Barber, Cosmetologist, Educator, and Entrepreneur. As a shop owner and product developer, he has a passion for promoting healthy hair and scalp. He loves to connect with others and share knowledge on industry trends and products to solve common problems with the hair, scalp, and skin to help clients look and feel their best.