Curly Hair Guide

What’s My Curl Hair Type?

Curly hair come in many shapes and spirals, from slightly wavy to very tightly coiled. Many girls and boys with curly hair will ask, “where does my curly hair come from?” or even rant, feet stomping with dreaded angst in their young voices, “why do I have curly hair, when, my brother/sister doesn’t, it’s not fair!” Fair has nothing to do with it. It is actually all in your genes. Research shows that your hair’s curl and texture is passed down in your genes. That is the DNA code known also as your genetic code, or blueprint that helps you grow into the unique and distinct individual that you are. Your genes influence how you look and that includes your hair type.

The young girl featured in the Curlee Girlee book series searches to understand where her curls come from. She is the only one in her family of five that has curly hair and often feels envious of her straight haired siblings, parents and friends. Inspired by a real life moment when author Atara and her curly hair daughter, Ari, find old photos of Grandma as a young girl with curly hair, the protagonist of Curlee Girlee sees herself in her grandmother and begins to understand, however subconsciously, that her hair is not random but instead part of a rich and scientifically formulated piece of your own personal legacy that is passed down through the generations. Armed with this understanding, she finally realizes that her hair makes her special precisely because it connects her to those who came before her. This knowledge is empowering and the connection and thread she can now establish to her ancestry finally helps curlee girlee to embrace who she is learning to love her hair exactly as it was meant to be.

Softly wavy to Boomerang Spiral hair

From softly spiraled to coiled or tightly spiraled, the experts have identified nine curl types to identify your curls. Curlee Girlee worked with nine curly hair children to create a fun new Curly Hair Guide for kids. Curlee Girlee hair is Spirally, 3A.

What’s yours? Identify your curl type from our fun curl chart and let us know by visiting us on Facebook and sharing your curl type.

2A Wavy

2A – Wavy

2B Swervey

2B – Swervey

curl hair type 2c for girls

2C – Swirly

3A Spirally

3A – Spirally

Curl type styles for girls and boys

3B – Twisty

My curly hair is type 3C for girls

3C – Coily

Where do My Curls Come From? Decoding Your Hair Curl Traits

Curlee Gurlee: Genetics of Curly Hair by Julia Ravey

Your curly hair is a very special gift which has been passed down through your family for generations. Like a top-secret cookie recipe created by your great, great grandmother and shared with each generation, you receive a unique set of instructions from both your parents to make you, you! These instructions live inside the cells of your body and dictate many of your traits from eye color to height. This code is called your DNA and contains specific instructions for each trait called genes. As your parents both give you a copy of their DNA, you end up with two copies of almost every gene!


Although we all have the same genes, there are small changes in every person’s instructions which make us look different. And these small changes are what determines how curly or straight your hair is. Our hair is so important that we don’t just have one ‘hair’ gene but approximately 12! These genes can either instruct our hair to be curly (C) or straight (S). The DNA given to you from your Mom will contain a mixture of 12 C’s or S’s and so will the DNA from your Dad – leading to about 24 C and S instructions.


But for each gene only one set of instructions can be used, and the way the body decides this is based on which gene is more dominant. Let’s imagine both your great, great grandmothers had slightly different recipes to make chocolate chip cookies which they passed down. One of these recipes might be easier to follow, so these instructions are always used to make chocolate chip cookies. This would be called the ‘dominant’ cookie recipe. A similar process happens with the C’s and S’s passed down from your parents. It is thought the C genes are more dominant but that is not always the case! So a person with straight hair could have some hidden C instructions in their DNA, meaning they could have a curly-haired child.


But even when your body has selected the many S and C instructions to make your hair, that is still a lot of different information! So, how does your body know whether to produce curly or straight hair? It is normally the case that the more C genes you have, the curlier your hair will be whereas the more S genes, the straighter your hair will be. The mixture of these C and S genes leads to the different hair textures, including the 9 types of curly hair.


Your wonderful curls are a beautiful present given to you by your ancestors and are a part of the incredible history of your family. Wear them with pride!

What Curl Type are You? Let us Know by Submitting Your Information Below!

  • Introduce yourself! What are your interests, how do you feel about your curls, etc? What curl type are you? In a short paragraph tell us about yourself and answer these questions, which are meant as a guide. But don't just answer the questions, let your personality (or your child's personality) come through in your writing. Write in a way YOU would be interested in reading, though of course, we will edit as necessary! 1). What is your age, grade, favorite books, movies, favorite quote, song, etc. 2) Your curls! What is your hair curl type? If you don't know, please check out our Curl Type Guide above. Who else in your family has curly hair? 3) What is your style?! What is your favorite style for school, for dressing up, for each season, etc. 4) Haircare tips! What are some hair care tips you can share for taking care of your curly hair?
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