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What do you consider curly hair??

favoritecolorblufavoritecolorblu Posts: 287Registered Users
Hi, I want to know what you consider curly hair.

A lot of black people tend to have 4a/4b hair, and a lot of other black people don't think that it should be considered curly. Why not? It forms a curl, just because they are not huge loose curls, the hair isn't curly?

What do you consider curly hair and why?
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  • PRINCETONPRINCETON Posts: 872Registered Users
    Back to basics lol all black people have a form of curly hair whether it's large defined curls, kinky tight thin curls, or unconditioned nappy no curl patterned curls.

    If they don't consider 4b or whatever (I have no clue about the naming convention) to be curls then what the heck do they prefer to call them??


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  • KeenyliciousKeenylicious Posts: 2,320Registered Users
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  • KeenyliciousKeenylicious Posts: 2,320Registered Users
    anywho... i think 'curly' is subjective. if someone doesnt think a person's hair is curly, oh well.
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  • KeiLaniKoilsKeiLaniKoils Posts: 439Registered Users
    I'm about to make it so complex its gonna blow errbody minds.
    Ready?
    Opposite of straight is curly
    wooooooooooooooooot :wav:

    Also I agree with the Keenster
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  • JessicazFroJessicazFro Posts: 1,446Registered Users
    I'm about to make it so complex its gonna blow errbody minds.
    Ready?
    Opposite of straight is curly
    wooooooooooooooooot :wav:

    Also I agree with the Keenster

    LOL!!!!!!!!!


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  • ttlollattlolla Posts: 948Registered Users
    There is kinky hair and curly hair; the people that get no consideration at all are people with really tight frizzy/ fuzzy waves , who either call themselves 4a or3c because they don't know what to call their hair

    Some peoples hair don't curl, it is wavy but not wavy like some ladies on NC but small waves . If someone says their hair is kinky/ curly / wavy / bent left or right, I just agree because there are more important properties to consider
  • AlikaIssaAlikaIssa Banned Posts: 339Banned Users
    Hi, I want to know what you consider curly hair.

    A lot of black people tend to have 4a/4b hair, and a lot of other black people don't think that it should be considered curly. Why not? It forms a curl, just because they are not huge loose curls, the hair isn't curly?

    What do you consider curly hair and why?

    I've noticed that too....

    I can understand why a lot of black people do not consider 4a/4b hair to be curly hair because I used to think that way when I was really young. As a young child I had never noticed curls in 4b hair so I didn't classify it as curly. I would refer to 4a/4b hair as 'afro textured hair'. However, when I was about 13 years old I started to do hair for people and it was then that I realised that 4b hair is curly hair. I have done many heads of hair and I have never seen a 4b head of hair that doesn't have curls.

    Back when I started transitioning in 2002 there was less emphasis on defining curls. I went natural with the intention of wearing my hair in a big afro. I was was working at a law firm at the time that I did my big chop and when I came to work wearing an undefined puff a lot of my non black colleagues were like 'I love your curly hair!' after touching it some would say 'your hair's so soft and curly!'. One of my colleagues was a Russian woman with long blond hair. She was growing out a perm so the ends of her hair were curly and the roots were straight. I remember her saying 'People always want what they don't have! I wish I had your curly hair! I bet you wish you had my straight hair. ' I laughed as I told her that a couple of years earlier I felt that straight hair was more managable so I relaxed my hair straight. I then explained that while transitioning I had curly roots with straight ends which was the complete opposite to her hair (straight roots with curly ends).

    In contrast, when black people saw me with my undefined puff some would say 'You grew an AFRO!' others would say 'You're BRAVE to be rocking your fro'. There wasn't one black person that I came across who referred to my hair as 'curly'.

    So, in my experience, non black people would look at my hair and see curls while black people would look at my hair and see an afro. Either way I don't mind, it's still the same head of hair regardless of what people call it.
  • subbrocksubbrock Posts: 8,212Registered Users
    i think if observers can't see the curl, then they tend not to call it curly (which might be the case for a lot of tighter curled/kinky/afro textured/whatever the hell you want to call it people).

    since going natural and joining sites like these, my definition of curl has expanded. i think people limit their definition of curls to be only circular in shape. it cracks me up when people call S shaped curls "waves". i find it even more hilarious when someone says that they have 4a/b hair with some type 2 sprinkled in there. no baby, those are just S shaped curls.

    i have noticed that non blacks have a hard time accepting my hair type as my natural hairtype because of what the OP is talking about. my hair is visibly curly and most people of all races acknowledge that. but i think it throws non blacks off because they think that our hair naturally grows into a picked out fro and that's it and that's why they ask "what do you do to get your hair like that?"
  • Dimplesonme2Dimplesonme2 Posts: 31Registered Users
    subbrock wrote: »
    i find it even more hilarious when someone says that they have 4a/b hair with some type 2 sprinkled in there. no baby, those are just S shaped"

    I could see where someone might think they have sprinkles of 2 in their hair. If I had to classify my hair I would fall under 4a/b, but I also have these dangfangled straight hairs that have absolutely no kink, bend, zigzag curl to it at all. They are bone straight and sprinkled throughout my head.

    When I first bc'd I thought they were remnants of perm and would clip them until someone here suggested I leave them alone. I eventually realized they were growing straight from the root. According to this typing system wouldn't those hairs fall under a 1 or 2? (Please correct me if I'm wrong.) Weird, but I see the possibility of that kind of thinking.

    I think that's why one head of hair is to difficult to categorize, there are so many anomalies.
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  • arkanfinearkanfine Posts: 209Registered Users
    These types of comments are so funny to me. A lady told me that I wasn't a curly, but I was kinky curly maybe. I told her she can call me whatever makes her happy. All I know is that I am cute. This is why I am against hair typing. (although I know it has a place)
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  • OmegaOmega Posts: 88Registered Users
    subbrock wrote: »
    i find it even more hilarious when someone says that they have 4a/b hair with some type 2 sprinkled in there. no baby, those are just S shaped"

    I could see where someone might think they have sprinkles of 2 in their hair. If I had to classify my hair I would fall under 4a/b, but I also have these dangfangled straight hairs that have absolutely no kink, bend, zigzag curl to it at all. They are bone straight and sprinkled throughout my head.

    When I first bc'd I thought they were remnants of perm and would clip them until someone here suggested I leave them alone. I eventually realized they were growing straight from the root. According to this typing system wouldn't those hairs fall under a 1 or 2? (Please correct me if I'm wrong.) Weird, but I see the possibility of that kind of thinking.

    I think that's why one head of hair is to difficult to categorize, there are so many anomalies.

    I have that too and I hate it. Looks especially weird in my TWA phase. Tight curly curls then straight. I call the straighter ones my 'momma hair' cause its more like my mom's hair texture. I don't know what type it is -- its just a nuisance.
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  • NinjaretteNinjarette Posts: 3,982Registered Users
    I don't have what I consider to be "curly" hair. My hair is kinky/coily. Yes, the definition of "curly" has broadened, but I never had a problem with the more narrow classification.

    I don't care what people call their hair. But I know that if someone had never seen me before, and I told them I had "curly" hair, most likely they wouldn't expect my type of hair...and that's fine. I try to keep it simple.
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  • chameleonrosechameleonrose Posts: 48Registered Users
    i like referring to my hair as kinky curly because i feel it encompasses both texture and curly pattern. although i sometimes use the andre walker system, i think it's not always understood by most, but the term "kinky curly" is
    arkanfine wrote: »
    These types of comments are so funny to me. A lady told me that I wasn't a curly, but I was kinky curly maybe. I told her she can call me whatever makes her happy. All I know is that I am cute. This is why I am against hair typing. (although I know it has a place)
  • ttlollattlolla Posts: 948Registered Users
    I call my hair kinky curly too , but neither do I disagree with what someone chooses to call my hair or theirs
  • Dimplesonme2Dimplesonme2 Posts: 31Registered Users
    ttlolla wrote: »
    I call my hair kinky curly too , but neither do I disagree with what someone chooses to call my hair or theirs

    I agree! Live and let live. Life is simpler that way. :-)
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  • OmegaOmega Posts: 88Registered Users
    Nea wrote: »
    I don't have what I consider to be "curly" hair. My hair is kinky/coily. Yes, the definition of "curly" has broadened, but I never had a problem with the more narrow classification.

    I don't care what people call their hair. But I know that if someone had never seen me before, and I told them I had "curly" hair, most likely they wouldn't expect my type of hair...and that's fine. I try to keep it simple.

    + 100
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  • Dimplesonme2Dimplesonme2 Posts: 31Registered Users
    Omega wrote: »

    I have that too and I hate it. Looks especially weird in my TWA phase. Tight curly curls then straight. I call the straighter ones my 'momma hair' cause its more like my mom's hair texture. I don't know what type it is -- its just a nuisance.

    I feel you, they drove me crazy when my TWA was really short, stuck out all over the place. Shingling gel helped clump them in with the curls eventually. But now since I'm stretching and twisting my hair I'm noticing them again. I just roll with it.
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  • Fantastic1221Fantastic1221 Posts: 356Registered Users
    i depends on my mood and the style but when i do twists outs or whatev, i call my hair "curly"
    when its in it natural state, i call it "kinky" b/c it literally "is."

    I dont really care what people call my hair or others as long as its not mean or demeaning, though occassionally i will correct people who are using the wrong words.
  • EllyEllyOxenFreeEllyEllyOxenFree Posts: 6,446Registered Users
    People can call their hair what they want. I call my hair kinky curly, because there is a visible curl pattern and I have kinky/afro textured hair, meaning that my hair is not silky by any means. Some people (meaning people not on the hair boards) call my hair curly, some people call it kinky, some people call it nappy (in the actual sense of the word, as well as the rude interpretation). Kanye shrug. At the end of the day, my hair looks like my hair, and no matter what you call it, it's still going to look like that.

    I think that a lot of people get caught up in semantics and labels, which imo, is super lame. It's like when a fat person is called "thick," it really doesn't matter if you call them thick or fat, at the end of the day their doctor is still telling them to lose weight so....
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  • chameleonrosechameleonrose Posts: 48Registered Users
    what do you mean by wrong wrong words, just curious
    i depends on my mood and the style but when i do twists outs or whatev, i call my hair "curly"
    when its in it natural state, i call it "kinky" b/c it literally "is."

    I dont really care what people call my hair or others as long as its not mean or demeaning, though occassionally i will correct people who are using the wrong words.
  • tbabyytbabyy Posts: 570Registered Users
    Omega wrote: »

    I have that too and I hate it. Looks especially weird in my TWA phase. Tight curly curls then straight. I call the straighter ones my 'momma hair' cause its more like my mom's hair texture. I don't know what type it is -- its just a nuisance.

    I feel you, they drove me crazy when my TWA was really short, stuck out all over the place. Shingling gel helped clump them in with the curls eventually. But now since I'm stretching and twisting my hair I'm noticing them again. I just roll with it.

    +100

    That's where I am right now!! But I just make it work, cuz there's nothin I can do about it. lol
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  • favoritecolorblufavoritecolorblu Posts: 287Registered Users
    These are all really good responses. I thought I was the only one who noticed that Black people and sometimes other people say that Afro hair isn't curly.

    But IMO, I do believe that all hair that isn't a wave (2b) is curly. I go by adjectives. Such as: curly, super curly, mega curly, super mega curly and super ultra mega curly. Lol. But then their are the kinky hair that isn't straight or curly, but wavy. I would just call that mega wavy. It's just easier that way.

    Another poster had said that "they seem to think my hair grows out automatically into a picked out afro."
    Man! Do you know how many times I got that? I don't wear my hair picked out (it hurts :-() and people would ask "How do you do that??" They were mostly white people though. It was weird. But then they proceeded to TOUCH it. :angry3:

    I remember I asked my boyfriend's brother why he does the whole 360 waves method (brush grease brush brush durag), and he was like "not everyone has curls". I wanted to say technically, everyone without straight hair does have a form of a curl, but I didn't because that's his own definition of it. But him and his brother both have at least 4a hair. My boyfriend is loc'd but I can see his roots and they are sort of large waves. I think it's because they don't know how to take care of their hair when they grow their hair out.

    Another thing is, people seem to think if you have visible COILS that your hair isn't curly. Hm. I don't know what to think. I just like debate and discussion. :)
  • NaturallyCurlyEnnovyNaturallyCurlyEnnovy Posts: 992Registered Users
    Hmm....I never thought about this at all. But, then I'm not around a great deal of black people.

    My mom has silky, "trying" to have a wave hair and calls it curly. l mess with her and tell her its not and we laugh. But, I guess if someone has spiral hair I would think curly. Other than that I honestly don't know.


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  • coilynappcoilynapp Posts: 4,233Registered Users
    mah boo is back!!! :love10:

    hi!! :hello2:
    I was waiting for this Keeny, you must be slippin' 'cause he all over the board...you not following close enough

    LOL
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  • SwtAnanaSwtAnana Posts: 70Registered Users
    It boggles my mind that people can look at strands of hair that form 360 degrees and not think "curly!" :confused: There are varying forms of curly...big loose clumped rings to tiny coils that don't clump. I mean, red is red right?...whether it's red-orange or fire-engine red, people understand that "red" encompasses a range.... so why all the expectations that curly hair is one big monolith?

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  • CocoTCocoT Posts: 5,330Registered Users
    I'm about to make it so complex its gonna blow errbody minds.
    Ready?
    Opposite of straight is curly
    wooooooooooooooooot :wav:

    Also I agree with the Keenster
    :thumbup:
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  • NinjaretteNinjarette Posts: 3,982Registered Users
    SwtAnana wrote: »
    It boggles my mind that people can look at strands of hair that form 360 degrees and not think "curly!" :confused: There are varying forms of curly...big loose clumped rings to tiny coils that don't clump. I mean, red is red right?...whether it's red-orange or fire-engine red, people understand that "red" encompasses a range.... so why all the expectations that curly hair is one big monolith?

    Why is it "mind boggling"? That's why I gave this thread a side-eye, because I see the potential for this to get too deep.

    Why does it matter that much? If you see YOUR hair as curly, then that's all that matters.

    I don't think it matters, but see I'm not offended by "kinky", "curly", or that DREADFUL "N Word" (nappy). So, I'm not the one to break this all down, in the first place.

    "Curl" is subjective, and that's okay. What you see, is not what someone else will see.
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  • SwtAnanaSwtAnana Posts: 70Registered Users
    Nea wrote: »
    SwtAnana wrote: »
    It boggles my mind that people can look at strands of hair that form 360 degrees and not think "curly!" :confused: There are varying forms of curly...big loose clumped rings to tiny coils that don't clump. I mean, red is red right?...whether it's red-orange or fire-engine red, people understand that "red" encompasses a range.... so why all the expectations that curly hair is one big monolith?

    Why is it "mind boggling"? That's why I gave this thread a side-eye, because I see the potential for this to get too deep.

    Why does it matter that much? If you see YOUR hair as curly, then that's all that matters.

    I don't think it matters, but see I'm not offended by "kinky", "curly", or that DREADFUL "N Word" (nappy). So, I'm not the one to break this all down, in the first place.

    "Curl" is subjective, and that's okay. What you see, is not what someone else will see.

    It's mind-boggling to me because I don't see it as subjective. It just seems pretty clear cut and that it could fall into a pretty simple definition using modifiers to further clarify (e.g. loosely curly, tightly curly, etc.)

    I'm ok with my hair being described as kinky as well...I actually use that to describe it (I say it's kinky curly). Personally, I'm a bit iffy on nappy because I find that most people use it in a derogatory way to mean unkempt. If someone is simply using it to be synonymous with "kinky curly" or whatnot, then I don't take offense to it...it's just a slap in the face when others use it as blanket adjective to mean "hair that you don't take care of"

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  • favoritecolorblufavoritecolorblu Posts: 287Registered Users
    Nea wrote: »
    SwtAnana wrote: »
    It boggles my mind that people can look at strands of hair that form 360 degrees and not think "curly!" :confused: There are varying forms of curly...big loose clumped rings to tiny coils that don't clump. I mean, red is red right?...whether it's red-orange or fire-engine red, people understand that "red" encompasses a range.... so why all the expectations that curly hair is one big monolith?

    Why is it "mind boggling"? That's why I gave this thread a side-eye, because I see the potential for this to get too deep.

    Why does it matter that much? If you see YOUR hair as curly, then that's all that matters.

    I don't think it matters, but see I'm not offended by "kinky", "curly", or that DREADFUL "N Word" (nappy). So, I'm not the one to break this all down, in the first place.

    "Curl" is subjective, and that's okay. What you see, is not what someone else will see.

    Well, it wasn't meant to get deep. I just asked a opinion question. People ask opinion questions all the time right? You could post up a picture of Beyonce and ask people if they think she is pretty or not, and people will say yes, no, maybe so. So why can't this thread be like that? Some people might take it too seriously and that isn't my fault. I cannot regulate how they think and choose to act. I just asked a simple opinion.

    And it's not too hard if you think about it. Just give your opinion. Nobody said we had to get into the science of things.
  • favoritecolorblufavoritecolorblu Posts: 287Registered Users
    Hmm....I never thought about this at all. But, then I'm not around a great deal of black people.

    My mom has silky, "trying" to have a wave hair and calls it curly. l mess with her and tell her its not and we laugh. But, I guess if someone has spiral hair I would think curly. Other than that I honestly don't know.


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    Lol. I never thought about it either, but ever since my bf's brother said that. I thought about why does he think that. Y'know?
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