We know looking after natural hair can be a daunting task, trying to keep your hair in healthy and prevent damage is a constant struggle, especially for those of you with tight curls and kinks. We think this discovery from researchers may make caring for your hair way easier than ever before!
Hair Systems for measuring curls
A group of researchers from the University of California introduced a new system for measuring curls and kinks, which will make it easier for people to care for their natural hair.
The new method replaces the traditional hair typing system with a more comprehensive one, taking into account various hair properties.
The hair typing system, which is the conventional method, categorizes hair into 4 types; straight, wavy, curly, and coily/kinky. Some may say the system is skewed as it only caters to certain hair types, which makes it difficult for people with tight curls and kinks to identify their hair properties.
Image|Diagram of different hair types
To resolve these problems, the new method includes various categories such as hair thickness, density, and porosity, alongside the curl pattern. This new technique will help people to identify the specific properties of their hair, making it much easier to choose the appropriate hair care products and treatments and we are here for any way to avoid buying shampoos and conditioners that just don't work!
This new method is called "curlmetric," and it involves using a mathematical algorithm to measure the curvature of hair strands.
With the curlmetric method, the shape of each hair strand is measured with precision, making it easier for people to select the right products and styling methods that work for their hair type.
The curlmetric method uses a mathematical algorithm to precisely measure the shape of each hair strand. The algorithm takes into account the number of twists and turns in each strand, as well as the angles at which each segment of the strand rotates, it's quite precise. With this information, the algorithm can accurately describe the shape of each hair strand and assign it a numerical value that can be used for categorization and product selection.
According to Jocelyn Washington, a postdoctoral researcher at MIT and the lead author of the study, "It's really difficult to communicate about curliness and kinkiness. You can't just say this hair type is wavy or curly or tightly coiled. Those terms don't describe the complexity of hair patterns.". The old methods were outdated and did not include the diverse hair types.
To develop the curlmetric method, Washington and her team used X-ray scattering techniques to study the structure of curly and kinky hair. They found that the shape of each hair strand is highly complex, with multiple twists, turns, and kinks. This complexity makes it difficult to accurately describe hair shape in a meaningful way.
The development of the curlmetric method has been important for rapidly expanding the beauty industry and we can see that with the expansion of hair care products to cater to all hair types one of our favourites is Ouai.
A time for change
We can see in the past years hair care products have been tailored to meet the specific needs of people with natural hair. The Shea Moisture range was formulated to better penetrate tightly coiled hair strands, providing more moisture and hydration. We have also seen the emergence of the Dyson range which has revolutionized the hair industry and they keep getting better!
We are so excited for the future of hair care and can only imagine what's to come. If there is one thing for sure we be here to update you all about it.