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What is hair elasticity? – Everything you need to know!

Are you familiar with the elasticity of your hair? Either way, in this blog you will discover more about what your hair elasticity is, why it can be important and how to test your hair’s elasticity.

What is hair elasticity?

Your hair elasticity is the ability of your hair to stretch and return to its normal state. You can compare it to an elastic band. In addition, your hair elasticity shows how healthy your hair is. With healthy hair, your hair is strong and your elasticity is balanced. In fact, you can tell something is wrong with your hair when you stretch your hair and it does not return to its original shape or breaks off.

How do you know if your hair elasticity is balanced?

When your hair is not balanced, 2 possibilities can cause this. Your hair is not hydrated enough or your hair does not have enough protein. Have you ever experienced it when your hair looked and felt very limp? This is an indication that something is wrong with your hair. There is no such thing as an elasticity type like you have with porosity and your hair type, but to give you an idea, read more about the possibilities within elasticity below.

Low elasticity

When your hair breaks very easily, there is low elasicity in your hair. This means that your hair has absorbed too much protein, or in other words that your hair lacks hydration.

Medium elasticiteit

With medium elasticity, your hair will stretch before it breaks off.

Hoge elasticiteit

With high elasticity, your hair can be stretched for a very long time before it breaks off.

Why is its elasticity important?

The elasticity of your hair is an indication of its health. Hydration ensures that your hair is able to stretch. By the way, your hair is very similar to your skin. When your skin is dry, it starts to feel rough and to put it more simply, your skin may even “break”. This is the same for your hair.

As you may already know, type 4 hair is more prone to dry hair because of its shape. It can have pits and elevations in the curves of the hair shaft. This can cause the cuticle to rise and expose the hair to moisture loss.

So why is elasticity important? It is important to understand your hair’s needs, which can help you with that. In any case, you want your tight coils to spring back without breaking.

How elastic should your hair be?

It is difficult to give a general answer to this as it will vary depending on your hair type. Generally, healthy hair would stretch between 40-50% when dry and 20% when wet.

How to determine your hair elasticity?

You can test your hair by taking a strand of hair from your brush and spraying it with water. Then, the idea is to gently start stretching your strand of hair. Pay close attention to how your hair behaves. If your hair immediately breaks off, it means your hair is in need of hydration and there is low elasticity.

If your hair can be stretched and springs back to its original shape, it is medium or balanced elasticity.

Finally, you don’t want your hair to be overly stretchy, as is the case with high elasticity hair. In such a case, this could mean that your hair needs protein.

Do you prefer to receive profesionelle expertise?

If you prefer to get professional advice, you can always contact a specialised hair stylist for this. They will take the time to analyse your hair and identify possible underlying problems.

Tips to maintain the elasticity of your hair:

It is practically impossible to prevent all damage to your hair, of course there are things you can do to make your hair’s elasticity as healthy as possible. Below are 3 general tips:

  1. Keep your hair moisturised
  2. Avoid using too much heat on your hair
  3. Limit chemical treatments on your hair

Sources used in this blogpost:

L, B. (2023, February 10). Hair Elasticity 101: Why is my hair stretchy? Cliphair US. https://www.cliphair.com/blogs/hair-blog/hair-elasticity-101-why-is-my-hair-stretchy

Stokes, V. (2021, March 25). Hair Elasticity: Get Bouncy, Shiny Locks with These Expert Tips. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/hair-elasticity

Curly, A. E. (2022, April 27). Hair elasticity | Straight, wavy, curly hair. Absolutely Everything Curly. https://absolutelyeverythingcurly.com/hair-elasticity

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