The Ultimate Guide for Type 2 Hair Types

Alyssa François | 21 November 2017

Embrace that enviable texture with the right frizz-fighting products.

Many of us with curly or wavy hair textures don’t actually know the actual hair type we have. While some may argue that they rather not identify their curls using a chart, it can be a super helpful thing to know where your hair type lies. Knowing the kind of curl pattern you have, whether it’s type 2 hair, 3 hair, or 4, can help you narrow down your product options when it’s time to shop for hair care items that work best for you.

We highlighted all of the curl types before, but this time around, we’re focusing on type 2 hair. Below you’ll find everything you need to know about this hair type, as well as the best product options to try:

Type 2 Hair Decoded: The Ultimate Guide

type 2 hair infographic
Type 2 hair decoded.

How to Determine 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 curlier the hair is.

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

Type 2 Hair Pros and Cons

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 styling their hair?

Cons: 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? It’s more than likely a little bit of both! Type 2 hair can also tend to fall flat and/or frizz out more easily than straight styles. When looking for products that will care for your curls, look for products that tame frizz.

Type 2 Hair Categories Explained

type 2 hair: waves
Strictly wavy. Photo credit:

Type 2A: Wavy

Type 2A hair has a loose ‘S’ shaped pattern, with the hair often being quite fine. If you have type type 2 hair that’s fine, your hair can feel weighed down if you don’t use lightweight products for your hair type. This type of hair is already pretty easy to manage, but when teamed with the right haircut (and when styled with the right products), you can achieve the appearance of fuller, thicker strands.

How to wear type 2A hair

We suggest trying the lob haircut, which is a celebrity and street-style star favorite. Or if you want to take things even shorter, opt for a chic chin-grazing bob to show off your tresses.

Top product picks for type 2A hair

There’s nothing worse than dealing with a limp and lifeless hair texture. If volume is your issue, opt for using products like Nexxus Diametress Rebalancing Shampoo and Conditioner to help boost volume.

type 2 hair: wavy
When it comes to texture, the messier, the better. Photo credit:

Type 2B: 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 wear type 2B hair

Type 2 hair looks great in longer styles, but if you have short hair, you can embrace your wavy texture too. Mussed-up waves look great on any hair length; the more disheveled the better.

Top product picks for type 2B hair

If you want to take advantage of the naturally frizzy texture of your hair, you can use a salt spray like Suave Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion Texturizing Spray to enhance the look. In the event you would rather have a style that’s frizz-free, we suggest washing hair with Suave Professionals Keratin Infusion Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner to help tame frizz before styling.

type 2 c hair: wavy curly
Stretched out wavy curl. Photo credit:

Type 2C: 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 wear type 2C hair

As type 2C hair can feel heavy due to the thickness, we suggest styling it in a side or off-center parting and pinning back if needed. On the flip side, you can embrace the thick feeling of your hair by wearing it in flawless wash-and-go styles.

Top product picks for type 2C hair

For curly-haired ladies struggling with coarse strands, we suggest trying Dove Absolute Curls Shampoo and Conditioner. This hair care system was created with curly hair types in mind and will  gently cleanse, hydrate and provide your hair with the curl definition you crave.


Want more tips for curly and wavy hair types? Here are the best hair products to use on your hair type.