What is 2a Hair: The Science Behind the Strand

Managing your hair can feel like a chore, but once you know your hair type, you can be confident in the products you buy and techniques you do to manage your hair. If you have the 2a hair type, you may find yourself trying new ways to style hair or adding steps to your routine that enhance your look.  

Learn about what makes up 2a hair, common issues that can arise, and how to care for it. 

2a Hair Type 

The makeup of 2a hair starts with the texture. If you have 2a hair, you likely have fine to medium texture, and your waves are loose and natural. People may describe your S-shape curls as “beach waves.” This hair type is less frizzy than other types. However, because the hair cuticle is more open, it can not only absorb moisture easily, but can also lose it, causing hair to be dry or look weighed down.  

Caring for 2a Hair Type 

Your 2a hair has many shared traits with other curly types when it comes to caring for your waves. For one, using a sulfate-free, silicone-free shampoo and conditioner when cleansing is always recommended. Harsh detergents like sulfate and moisture-blocking ingredients like silicone can strip the hair of natural oils, so avoid them wherever you can.  

It’s easiest to style 2a hair when it is wet or damp to avoid adding tangles or frizz to freshly washed hair. Dry hair with a microfiber towel or t-shirt to also avoid frizz and to keep your curls in place.  

Explore common 2a hair issues and how to address them in your care routine. 

Caring for Lack of Volume with 2a Hair 

2a hair is versatile and easy to style. If you’d like your beach waves to look sleek and straight, then your hair is likely receptive to heat tools like straighteners to help achieve the look. However, because your hair lacks volume at the roots, the risk of over-styling hair brings with it the chance your hair could look limp.  

Be sure not to overdo it on products, as too much can weigh hair down and make it harder to style the way you want. Water-based mousse can enhance your ways and add volume to your roots. 

Caring for Dryness with 2a Hair 

Hair with open cuticles is well-known for losing moisture, and when you have fine 2a hair, you need all the moisture you can get! 

Use lightweight leave-in conditioners between washes and a moisture-rich shampoo to keep hair looking its best. When you shower, be sure to rinse one final time with cold water to lock in moisture and close your cuticles.  

While 2a hair doesn’t necessarily need added oils, since the scalp tends to be oilier, occasionally using products that lock in moisture can be useful. Cleansing your scalp well can also keep the oily feeling away since you not only remove oil when you wash your hair, but other dirt and debris like product buildup.  

Caring for Tangles with 2a Hair 

Fine hair may tangle easily, so it’s important to do what you can to keep it tangle-free. Use a wide-tooth comb on wet hair to detangle it, and add in a detangling product for added moisture as well as to make the process easier. Drying hair by squeezing out excess water rather than tousling it with a towel will also help keep tangles at bay.  

Take Our Hair Quiz 

Caring the right way for 2a hair means knowing what products work best for your hair type. Need additional help? Try the HairCode quiz to learn more. 

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