type 2 hair

A Guide to Type 2 Hair: How To Style and Care For Your Wavy Hair

Wavy hair, which is on the straighter side compared to curlier textures but still has some shape to it, is known as type 2 hair. Type 2 hair develops its structure from the shape of the cortex and is often divided into 3 categories: 2A, 2B and 2C. Classified as hair that is ‘naturally wavy’, type 2 hair forms an ‘S’ shape in the hair, with the stronger the ‘S’ shape, the more curly the hair is.

So why is it important to know your hair type? Well, have you tried a multitude of hair products, styles and treatments, yet are left feeling disappointed as they didn’t work for your hair? Knowing how to classify your strands is a great way to help you select the right products and build a hair care regime that your locks will benefit from most.

type 2 hair infographic
Type 2 hair decoded.

Type 2 Hair Pros and Cons

So now you know the basics of what type 2 hair is, we’re going to reveal a few pros and cons with this unique hair type.

Pros: Year-round Beach Waves and Versatility

You know those natural, beachy waves that many women try to achieve through sea salt sprays and clever styling hacks? They are all yours au naturel, meaning you have an on-trend style all year round!

Not one for beachy waves? Then you’ll also be pleased to know that type 2 hair has great versatility, enabling you to go between straight and curly styles with minimal effort. After all, who doesn’t like to have a variety of options when it comes to hair?

Cons: Identity Crisis and Frizzy, Flat Hair

While it can be amazing going between straight and curly styles, ladies with type 2 hair can often struggle to know which category they fall in. Is it straight? Is it curly? We share your pain.

Type 2 hair can also tend to fall flat and/or frizz more easily than straight styles. This means that, while looking for products that will care for your curls, you might find you need frizz-fighting and volumising products also it can be a balancing act.

The Different Categories of Type 2 Hair

Arizona Muse golden blonde hair in chin length bob
Arizona Muse wears her type 2a hair in a fabulous bob. Credit: Rex by Shutterstock

2A Hair: Wavy Swavy

Type 2A hair has a loose ‘S’ shaped pattern, with the hair often being quite fine. Due to this, type 2A hair can feel weighed down when too much product is applied. In addition, type 2A hair usually lacks definition or volume for this reason.

This type of hair is already pretty easy to manage, but when teamed with the right haircut can give the appearance of fuller and thicker strands.

How to Style Type 2A Hair

Just like Sofia Richie and Arizona Muse, who both have type 2A hair, shoulder-length styles will give your tresses the added oomph it needs.

We suggest trying out the celeb-fave long bob (AKA the lob), which works wonders for stars like Emilia Clarke and Chrissy Teigen, who are also proud owners of lob-cut type 2A hair. Or if you want to take things even shorter, do like Arizona Muse (above) and opt for a chic chin-grazing bob to show off your tresses.

TRESemmé Volume & Lift Mousse Front

Top Product Picks for Type 2A Hair

Start by switching your current wash and care system to one formulated especially for fine tresses in mind. We love the TRESemmé Body & Volume Shampoo for adding sky-high volume to thin hair.

Vanessa Hudgens very long brown wavy hair in half-up style
All hail the queen of boho that is Vanessa Hudgens. Credit: Rex by Shutterstock

2B Hair: Wavy Curvy

With a more prominent ‘S’ shape, type 2B hair resembles loose beach-like waves with curls that don’t bounce up. Waves are more clearly defined and while that might sound most pleasing, type 2B hair can often frizz.

How to Style Type 2B hair

Type 2 hair looks great in longer styles (think Rapunzel-length tresses, if you dare) and with that desirable beach waves look, you can effortlessly channel Vanessa Hudgens vibes.

You can also turn to Charli XCX for inspiration, as the singer often rocks her type 2 hair in an array of fab styles  oh, and let’s not forget Kim Kardashian‘s lengthy tousled tresses.

Top Product Picks for Type 2B Hair

If frizzy hair is getting you down, treat yourself to the TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Shine Oil. Infused with keratin, this mask po; to smooth your locks, leaving them frizz and tangle-free!

TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Shine Oil Front

Then, to make your post-treated hair appear even smoother and silkier, try a lightweight serum, which you can use after styling to help smooth down any unwanted frizz and add a glossy sheen.

Salma Hayek medium length dark brown curly wavy hair
Salma Hayek rocking her natural type 2c locks. Credit: Rex by Shutterstock

2C Hair: Wavy Whirly 

Wavy hair with a very distinct ‘S’ shaped pattern, type 2C hair is borderline curly with strands of hair forming loose spiral curls. Type 2C hair is thicker, coarser and more resilient to styling, yet can be the frizziest of all type 2 hair.

How to Style Type 2C Hair

Take inspiration from Taylor Swift circa 2006 and Salma Hayek, and wear your type 2C hair in a medium to long style. As type 2C hair can feel heavy due to the thickness, we suggest styling it in a side or off-centre parting and pinning back if needed.

Alternatively, on the rare occasion that Jennifer Lopez and Rita Ora don’t straighten their tresses, they like to wear their naturally curly tresses in a short shag haircut.

Top Product Picks for Type 2C Hair

For curly-haired ladies struggling with coarse strands, we suggest trying the TRESemmé Nourish Coconut Shampoo and ConditionerNot only will this clarifying shampoo gently cleanse your hair, but the conditioner will help to give your curly locks a major hydration boost – jackpot!

TRESemmé Nourish Coconut Shampoo Front

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