What’s My Hair Type and How Do I Treat it?


From dry to oily, thick to fine… being able to determine your hair type and density can be a little complicated.

We first talked about your perfect hairstyle in Which Hairstyle Suits Me? and now that you’ve found it, it’s time to take care of your hair properly. It’s important to know what hair type you have to properly treat it, because most women are using the wrong shampoo for their hair type, which may lead to common hair concerns.

You may find that your hair tends to get oily, and you don’t know why, or that it’s so dry, and you have no idea why – and the answer is that it’s usually because you’re using the wrong shampoo for your hair type!

Just like how finding out your skin type is important in taking care of your skin, knowing your hair type will let you know how to maintain and take care of your hair the right way. Here’s how:

Hair Type

So how do you find your hair type? I personally didn’t really know there were so many hair types until I properly studied it. Here are the different hair types and their features:

  • Normal Hair: It is fairly easy to manage, not greasy and not dry either.
  • Oily Hair: Often has problems with dandruff and looks oily after a day of washing. Hair normally feels heavy and dirty.
  • Dry Hair: This is not to be confused with damaged hair that are a result from intense styling and heat. Instead, dry hair looks dull, lifeless, and well… dry. It feels like all moisture and life has been sapped from it. Dry hair can break off easily and your scalp can feel itchy at times.
  • Combination Hair: Just like combination skin, this hair type has characteristics from both dry and oily hair. Normally, your scalp is oily and your ends are dry. After shampooing, your hair looks great but the ends still look very dry.
  • Damaged hair: Lifeless, split ends, rough textures – all the result from backcombing, styling products, and heat.

Treating Your Hair Type

After determining your hair type, it’s time to take care of it. A dirty scalp and hair shaft is not conducive to supporting hair health, so shampooing is important. Plus it just feels good to give it a good wash!

Here’s how to shampoo your hair with your certain hair type.

swag hairstyle freya beha hair
Image: Vogue

Dry hair
Dry hair should be shampooed every other day. Using a lighter conditioner will allow you to keep your hair from getting oily, letting that shampoo bottle take a bit of a rest. This goes for chemically altered or color treated hair as well.

You can use any shampoo for this, but I would recommend a great conditioner. My absolute favorite one is this conditioner, I’m probably on my 10th bottle – it’s so affordable, too! Also, a weekly deep conditioning hair treatment is vital – I write how to do it at your own home, here.

Normal hair
Normal can be shampooed every day, or every two days depending on the circumstances surrounding the hair. However, use a gentle shampoo only – you may end up overfishing your hair which can dry it out. I adore the Natural Shampoo by Original Sprout.

Combination hair
Wash the scalp with shampoo made for oily hair/dandruff, and condition the ends only. Read on my product recommendations in Dry and Damaged hair for some great conditioners.

Oily hair
Oily hair should be shampooed according to how oily the hair is, however every day is usually necessary. If you notice your hair is oily even when it is washed every day, it might be necessary to contact a dermatologist since oily hair comes from a scalp function.

Damaged hair
Damaged hair needs a lot of deep conditioning. I really recommend this product, I adore it! You can drench your hair in it too, because the conditioner is really affordable and lasts such a long time. Also, the only real way to get rid of all those dead, lifeless ends is to have a good haircut, and try to cut down on using heat styling tools.

If you want a more natural treatment, you can try out my favorite coconut oil for hair, or check out MoroccanOil – Worth the Hype? where we discussed whether this hair oil is really as great as the media claims!

hair type
Left to right: Original Sprout Natural Shampoo, Aubrey Organics Biotin Shampoo, The Body Shop Rainforest Shampoo, VO5 Silky Conditioner.

A note on shampooing

As I mentioned, hair health really does start with the right shampoo, which helps your scalp and hair type. But with shampooing, it’s very important that you don’t overdose with the shampooing!

Due to the strong ingredient sodium lauryl sulfate in most shampoos, overusing it can cause your hair to be stripped, dried out, and damaged. (Of course, you can use those without this SLS ingredient, some of my favorite shampoos without them are from Original Sprout, Aubrey Organics and The Body Shop.

What’s Your Hair Type? …

Now, over to you, my readers! Those are some simple tips on identifying your hair type and how to treat it. I hope they were helpful. What’s your hair type? How will you be taking care of it?

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