Friday, February 6, 2009

Hair Analysis

In addition to the four main hair properties, a good stylist performing a proper analysis on you will also examine your wave pattern, hairline and growth pattern. Although not critical, I'd still like to touch very briefly on these because it is helpful to understand them for any consultation with your stylist.

First, some definitions.

Wave pattern:
The amount of movement in your hair strand. Your wave pattern can be described as anything from "stick-straight" to "extremely curly."

The hair that grows at the outermost perimeter around the face, around the ears and across the neck.

Growth pattern:
The direction in which the hair grows from the scalp. This is also referred to as your hair's "natural fall." Cowlicks, whorls, hair streams and other growth patterns directly affect how the hair rests once it is dry.

Wave pattern is most often identified by some of the curl classification systems that have sprung up in recent years, such as "2c" or "4a". Again, I am going to reiterate that your wave pattern has absolutely NOTHING to do with what products and product ingredients are appropriate for your hair type.

Hairline becomes important in deciding on how to style and cut your hair...if you have a high hairline, for example, you may feel more comfortable styling your face frame so the curls come over your forehead a bit.

Cowlicks and whorls -- which result when hair follicles grow in different directions from the main hair streams -- can be a huge pain in the posterior. You can't fight your growth pattern, but it again becomes important to consider these when choosing a shape and style.

(A hair stream is an area of hair that grows in the same direction. Two hair streams that flow in opposite directions, incidentally, are what create a natural part.)

Like I said, not critical... but still good to know. I believe the more information we have about our own hair, the better we will be able to educate those who help us to take care of it, right?

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