CurlTalk

Black hair vs white hair?

tgreyztgreyz Posts: 1,627Registered Users
I'm not bashing any type of hair. I really don't want to offend anyone, or make this some crazy race discussion but I have a question.

I am biracial, my father is black and my mother is white. My curls fit somewhere between 3b and 3c. When I straighten my hair, it is on the poofy side, looks fried and you can just tell that my hair is not naturally straight.

I used to work with a girl who had curly hair. She was white, but straightened her hair every day and it looked like her hair was naturally straight.

Is this a race thing? Or just a matter of curly type? People with 2-3a hair seem to have finer silkier hair. While people with 3b+ hair it seems to be coarser and more prone to frizz. And in my experience white people have the first type, and other races have the latter.

Yet again please don't be offended by this. In general I like my own hair and don't feel like anyone should be pressured into fitting a certain mold. I just wish I could straighten my hair once in awhile for a change and it could look normal.
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Comments

  • SuZenSuZen Posts: 1,595Registered Users
    I think that the curlier the hair is, the more likely it won't look smooth and silky when straightened. I think we have all seen examples of straightened hair that is stiff and unattractive.

    But there are many Caucasion people whose hair is 3b and 3c and I know some who venture into the 4s. I think it's a matter of hair type rather than ethnic background.
  • CurlieGlamourGirlieCurlieGlamourGirlie Posts: 1,198Registered Users
    Hi!! I have been known to pass as all sorts of nationalities from Middle Eastern to Greek to Hispanic to Italian to being asked if I'm Jewish.

    My hair does not look good blown straight at all. It looks puffy and definitely looks like it's not supposed to be straight.

    I'm fine with that too. It's too much work to get it straight and takes my hair forever to recover from it.

    But I think it's a hair type thing, as my hair seems to be more and more 3c.
  • kdcreighkdcreigh Posts: 736Registered Users
    Hi,

    I am black and my husband is white. We have three bi-racial children. My oldest daughter has type 3a/b hair; my youngest daughter has type 2a/b hair; my son is only 4 months old and has essentially no hair! :lol:

    My girls' hair straightens very easily. In fact, I can just brush it when it is dry, and it comes out straight. My husband has bone-straight (type 1), silky hair and I have type 4a/b fairly coarse, dry hair.

    The hair typing (1-4) is meant to define the curl pattern, not the hair texture. There are many type 1 people in this world with coarse hair (many Asians have bone-straight, coarse hair). There are also many type 4s with soft and silky hair (my mother has 4a/b soft and silky hair).
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  • x_tigerlilyx_tigerlily Posts: 432Registered Users
    I'm white and I have 3C hair with bits of 4A. When I straighten my hair, it's poofy looking and you can tell my hair isn't naturally straight...even when I was relaxing it.

    Although my hair is 3C it's not coarse. It's pretty soft and cottony.
    3C/4A and too long to handle (and afford!)
  • LayaliLayali Posts: 561Registered Users
    My hair comes out silky and smooth when I straighten it. I think it has less to do with race and more to do with the condition of your hair and products you use. I only get the poof when my hair is extremely dry.

    Oh, yeah and I'm black :wink:
    naturally 3b/3c

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  • redcelticcurlsredcelticcurls Posts: 17,502Registered Users
    I think it may be more of a texture thing too. I'm a 3B, and it takes a lot of work to get my hair straight in a decent looking way. I can't even do it myself, so I get it done at a salon if I want it. The next day you can tell that I'm a curly incognito. But, I have a coarser texture, which I think plays into it more than my curl pattern. I think I could pull off straightening better if my hair was more fine and silky.

    I'm not offended by the race qustions. As pale as I am, I get race questions because of my hair. My guess is that so many white women straighten that sometimes we forget that white people can have a tighter curl pattern too.
    Kiva! Microfinance works.

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  • SuZenSuZen Posts: 1,595Registered Users
    Thought I'd add that I work with a woman from India who has very curly hair -- it's so short it's hard to tell, but I'd say probably 3c. I tend to think of Indian hair as being straight or nearly so -- so there are exceptions everywhere.
  • JaxieJaxie Posts: 1,282Registered Users
    I think its more about the type of hair than of your race. I know a lot of white women who have curly hair and their hair is poofy when they straighten (that is how my lil sis' hair is), but I've also known women of other races that can have soft silkly hair when they do straighten it. ~~jax
    2c or 3a Cut most of my hair off in July '12 and am working on regrowing it.
  • Charming NotionCharming Notion Posts: 697Registered Users
    it sometimes depends on tools/products, too. I used to have this craptastic 2 inch flat iron and it would take forever to straighten my hair and when it was done, it looked fried and the ends were puffy. later, i got a wider, conair flat iron. it is ah-mazing. i don't have to blow dry it or put any product in for it to look nice.
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  • redbadgercurlsredbadgercurls Posts: 31Registered Users
    i'm about as white as it gets and when i straighten my hair it never looks like it's naturally straight. I think it's probably a combination of my texture and my crappy straightener though.
  • curlybeancurlybean Posts: 66Registered Users
    I am white and I have never been able to get my 3b hair to look good when trying to straighten it. I have always had it look frizzy. The same goes for my 7 year old daughters hair. I would say that both of us have healthy hair, hers especially, but it won't straighten well. I gave up on that long ago.
    3B, Fine, Low Porosity, & High Hair Density
  • eccentric_kurlzeccentric_kurlz Posts: 4,144Registered Users
    Layali wrote:
    My hair comes out silky and smooth when I straighten it. I think it has less to do with race and more to do with the condition of your hair and products you use. I only get the poof when my hair is extremely dry.

    Oh, yeah and I'm black :wink:

    Me too. I can get my hair pretty straight and silky when my hair is healthy, and when I use the right products and appliances to straighten(I'm 3c/4a with fine/medium textured strands). I have family with 3a/b whose hair looks really puffy/frizzy when they try to straighten. How straight you can get your (I believe) has more to do with texture, condition(health wise)and how the hair responds to manipulation as opposed the the person's racial background.
    A wonderful mix of coils, curls, corkscrews, and kinks.

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  • unique1193unique1193 Posts: 328Registered Users
    I think it has to do with the curl type and curl texture. When a curly's hair is coarse, it wont look silky, and therefore giving away that your not a natural straighty. Also, if you have a tighter curl pattern, like 3bs and down, your hair wont stay perfectly straight for long, that is if you even get it perfect at all.

    2c/3a
    Growing out hair to a little above bsl
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  • PortaePortae Posts: 337Registered Users
    I don't know if it's just a matter of curl tightness. I definitely think that there is a texture issue that is somewhat related to race. I have non-Black friends who have curls that are just as tight if not tighter than mine, but their hair feels different. My hair is like a cotton ball texture, whereas they (my friends) will have a silky texture.
  • medusahairmedusahair Posts: 3,515Registered Users
    My hair is just 2C/3a (whatever you want to call it pics are at the www link) and my hair looks like crap straightened. You can tell my hair isn't naturally straight. It's sort of wiry looking when straightened and it won't stay straight.
    Now my moms looks odd straightened but her hair is super thick and the strands are real thick.
    2c/3a?
    Low porosity, medium texture.
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  • wild_sasparillawild_sasparilla Posts: 4,306Registered Users
    Man, I clicked this thinking it was a thread about dying black (the color) hair, bleaching it to make it white, or going gray/white. Where was my brain? :oops:
    OMG, LOOK!!

    ...It's a siggie. :shock:
  • xfancyxfancy Posts: 91Registered Users
    im black, have 3c hair, and silky hair when straightened. haha if it didnt look so incredibly sexy i wouldnt take the 4 hours to do it in the first place!
    :lol:

    i think it has to do with curl pattern and texture.
    3c... and clueless pj
  • vanes16vanes16 Posts: 131Registered Users
    Man, I clicked this thinking it was a thread about dying black (the color) hair, bleaching it to make it white, or going gray/white. Where was my brain? :oops:

    me too...lol
    3b-4a hair & CG


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  • redcelticcurlsredcelticcurls Posts: 17,502Registered Users
    vanes16 wrote:
    Man, I clicked this thinking it was a thread about dying black (the color) hair, bleaching it to make it white, or going gray/white. Where was my brain? :oops:

    me too...lol

    I did too at first
    Kiva! Microfinance works.

    Med/Coarse, porous curly.
  • werenumber2werenumber2 Posts: 260Registered Users
    I'm inclined to agree with Portae. I also believe it's more of a matter of hair texture (fine, normal, coarse) rather than curl tightness. Not everyone who has straight hair has fine/normal hair, and not everyone who has kinky hair has coarse hair. For some reason, these terms are often seen as interchangeable. From your description, my hair sounds similar to yours. I'm also biracial (white Puerto Rican mother with straight hair and African-American father with kinky hair) with a mixture of 3b/3c hair.

    The few times a year I get my hair straightened, it's at Dominican salons where they blowdry it straight. My hair always comes out silky smooth and almost looks like my mother's naturally straight hair.
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    3b/c fine corkscrews and spirals. Naked hair above.


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  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Posts: 31,258Registered Users
    I'm white with very coarse hair, but it's just barely 3A. I can't straighten my hair without it being frizzy and "lumpy".
  • curlylauracurlylaura Posts: 8,352Registered Users
    My hair's 3b and when I straigtened it I could get it very nearly straight apart from near the roots where it had a slight wave. I think it has more to do with texture than curl tightness, hair condition will also play part but not for me because my hair was fried when I was straigtening.
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  • ShahadaShahada Posts: 40Registered Users
    hey mama,
    pm me and I'll give you some tips on str8ing your hair. I have coarse hair and I manage to get it looking very good. Granted it is very thick...if you go to my myspace page, myspace.com/doramilaj you'll see in my pics my hair str8 and my hair curly.

    Mama, you have to accept that your hair isn't going to be fine and limp when you straighten it. That's the way it is with "ethinic" or just plain coarse hair. My girl, Tanya is russian and the chick got hair like a black girl....however you flip it, it is what it is and you gotta work with it.
    3a/b/c 23 inches long, thick and frizzy.
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  • Curls are hotCurls are hot Posts: 28Registered Users
    I used to straighten my hair a WHOLE lot a few years ago. When i first started I bought a chi flat iron, and it looked HORRIBLE. I later bought a much cheaper flat iron because it was reccomended to me (hot tools) and it made my hair perfectly straight. Wierd. I dont use it anymore, but I thought that might be helpful :P
  • curlicious3bcurlicious3b Posts: 458Registered Users
    I think it depends on the individual more than the racial background. I'm a 3b/3c with a mix of fine and medium strands and my hair turns out pretty straight and silky when straightened. Like eccentric kurlz said, I think the health of your hair makes a huge difference. No matter what type of hair you have, if it's unhealthy it won't look good straightened.
    3c
  • AmnerisAmneris Posts: 15,117Registered Users
    tgreyz wrote:
    I'm not bashing any type of hair. I really don't want to offend anyone, or make this some crazy race discussion but I have a question.

    I am biracial, my father is black and my mother is white. My curls fit somewhere between 3b and 3c. When I straighten my hair, it is on the poofy side, looks fried and you can just tell that my hair is not naturally straight.

    I used to work with a girl who had curly hair. She was white, but straightened her hair every day and it looked like her hair was naturally straight.

    Is this a race thing? Or just a matter of curly type? People with 2-3a hair seem to have finer silkier hair. While people with 3b+ hair it seems to be coarser and more prone to frizz. And in my experience white people have the first type, and other races have the latter.

    Yet again please don't be offended by this. In general I like my own hair and don't feel like anyone should be pressured into fitting a certain mold. I just wish I could straighten my hair once in awhile for a change and it could look normal.

    I saw the pics of your straightened hair, and at least in the pic, it didn't look poofy or fried! It looked good - it just had the odd flyaway and bump which if you brushed it down and wrapped it could probably be fixed.

    I'm multiracial and my hair is 3b/3cish and doesn't look that good when I do it myself - if I try to straighten my own hair, it never goes really straight. But my stylist can make it amazingly silky and straight. It still has a lot of volume because that's just my hair, but it is straight. Which makes me think that technique/the amount of tension you are able to put on the hair is the main factor in straightening, not hair type.

    In terms of chemical straightening, my hair was always resistant to that too. My stylist used to say that my type of curl was much harder to straighten than most heads of tighter curls (4a and 4b) so I think that the type of hair you and I have is very resistant.

    My hair is coarse, but I don't think all 3b/c's are. Some have fine hair, some silky, some cottony, some a blend.... it all depends. Same with 3as or any other hair type.

    I also think hair thickness is a factor in straightening. I have insanely thick hair - like we're talking a 9 or 10 inch ponytail base! as well as quite a bit of length - so that makes it much harder than a 3 or 4 inch ponytail would be. The more hair you have the more patience you need and your hair is going to start airdrying so you have to keep wetting it... it's much easier with a stylist's help. My stylist sometimes takes 3 or 4 hours to press my hair straight, but it will last forever. I also cannot get nice looking straight hair with a flat iron - it HAS to be a hot comb that can get right to the roots, and I have to wrap it all the time when I am home or in bed.

    In terms of race, I think not only texture, but also curl pattern, can tend to differ between different ethnicities. I notice that a white person with 3b or 3b/c hair tends to have a different curl pattern than a Black/mixed person with the same curl size (not always, but often.) Very tightly curled Black hair, like 4a or 4b, has a flat, ribbon-like cuticle while less curly Caucasian hair has an oval cuticle and straighter hair has a round cuticle (I think that's correct - anyway, the cuticle shape is different.) So I think those of us who have partial African ancestry and partial "other" ancestry have a partially flat cuticle but not AS flat, where those of European descent with curly hair tend to have a round cuticle. Because I notice that "our" curls tend to have a different shape and pattern - they are often more of a "coil" and less of a "spiral" if that makes sense. Or we will have the very S-shaped curls. I would describe "our" curls as corkscrews and many white peoples' curls as ringlets. I think our curls also tend to be more defined and clumped and distinguishable from each other even though they are very small curls and a lot of white peoples' hair tends to stick together more naturally, if that makes sense. Like, Nicole Kidman and Keri Russell's natural hair has a different look and quality than Tracee Ellis Ross or Rachel True's natural hair.

    Of course, with all the race mixing and crossing over the years, and all the things we do to our hair, you never really know what peoples' backgrounds are and there is nothing really definitive when it comes to hair and who has what type. There are genetic tendencies but I think looking at hair as "Black" or "white" doesn't really make a whole lot of sense with all the diversity we have as people.

    Tgreyz, I think if you found a really good stylist to straighten your hair you would be amazed at how nice it could look.
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  • three rivers curlythree rivers curly Posts: 994Registered Users
    I am white, but of Greek heritage. My hair definately does not look natural when blown out straight. I've only ever had one person blow it out to the point that it was "perfect" and it was so fried after that, I had to DC and protein it to death for the curls to recover. I have thin, fine 3a/b hair.
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