Natural Hair Language

APL: Arm Pit Length. A length of hair that reaches the arm pit when stretched

BIG CHOP: This is one of the two ways of going natural. It means to cut off all of one’s relaxed ends in order to have a head full of natural hair. The big chop means to either shave one’s head bald or trim a huge chunk of hair off depending on how much relaxed hair they have.

BANTU KNOTS/BANTU KNOT OUT: A style that involves twisting the hair and curling it around itself, with a curl defining cream and then unraveling it when dry to get a curl pattern

BIOTIN: A vitamin that strengthens hair and nails, allowing length retention

BRAID OUT: A style that involves braiding the hair, either when wet or dry, with a curl defining cream or gel and then unraveling it when dry to get a crimped curl pattern

BREAKAGE: This is when the damaged ends of hair strand cuts off

BSL: Bra strap length. A length of hair that reaches the bra strap when stretched

CARRIER OIL: Light natural oils like olive oils, castor oil, and coconut oil e.t.c. Often mixed with a few drops of essential oils before applying on hair

CBL: Collar bone length. Length of hair that reaches the collar bone when stretched

CG METHOD: The Curly Girl Method, that involves the use of only conditioners for cleansing the hair

CONES: These refer to silicone ingredients.  One should avoid them if using the Curly Girl Method.

CO WASH/CW: This means washing or cleansing the hair with only conditioner.

CURL PATTERN: The type of curl on one’s head of hair, ranges from straight to zigzag.

DEMARCATION LINE: The transition between the relaxed part and natural part in a hair strand

DIY: Do It Yourself hair concoctions

DUSTING: Trimming of a few micro inches of hair, this could be done as a result of single strand knots or anything.

DT/DC: Deep treatment or deep conditioning

EVCO: Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

EVOO: Extra Virgin Olive Oil

ESSENTIAL OIL: These are potent natural oils that are used in drops and mixed with carrier oils

EDGES: The sensitive area around the temples

FRIZZY HAIR: Hair that is dried out, with no shine or luster

GOING NATURAL: This is the process of going from relaxed to natural hair. Where an individual stops using chemicals to straighten hair to allow the natural growth

HAIR SEBUM: The natural hair oil that comes out on the scalp to lubricate the scalp and hair strands

HAIR DENSITY: The number of hair strands per square inch on a scalp

HEAT DAMAGE: This means permanently altered hair strands that cannot coil up to its natural state as a result of too much heat styling with flat iron, hot comb e.t.c.

HHG:  HAPPY HAIR GROWING, often said to people who are newly transitioning to natural hair

HHJ : HEALTHY HAIR JOURNEY, the use of healthy regimen to care for hair


HUMECTANTS: A hair product that attracts/draws moisture to itself from the surrounding environment. Some examples are honey, aloe vera juice e.t.c.

JBCO: Jamaican Black Castor Oil

LENGTH CHECK: The process of stretching different parts of the hair to see how long it has grown over a certain period of time. The parts used are usually the front, the back the crown and the side

LONG GROW OUT: This is another route of transitioning where an individual allows the new natural growth beneath the relaxed hair to grow until all the relaxed hair disappears

LOW MANIPULATION:  Adopting a styling technique that does not require an individual to keep touching the hair

MBL: Mid back length. A length of hair that reaches the mid back when stretched

MOISTURIZE: To apply a cream or water to add moisture the hair. Natural kinky hair loves this

NAPPY HAIR: Another term for Natural Hair

NATURAL HAIR: Kinky hair type that has not been altered by chemicals or heat stylers

NATURAL HAIR COMMUNITY: This is the community that involves everyone who is going natural or is fully natural. Most people in this community have vlogs websites and blogs on their natural hair journeys

NATURAL HAIR MEET UP: A meeting where all the naturals in a city come together to exchange ideas on all things natural hair

NEW GROWTH: This is the natural growth that comes out a few weeks after the application of relaxer

NO POO: A type of healthy hair regimen that does not involve the use of shampoo. It is usually called THE CURLY GIRL METHOD

PINEAPPLEING: This is a method of packing up the hair in a high puff at night to protect and preserve style while sleeping

 PRE POO: A treatment or treatments done to the hair before shampooing the hair in order to keep the shampoo from stripping the hair of moisture. It could be done with honey or some oils

PRODUCT BUILD UP: Clogging of hair follicles and strands with various products

PROTECTIVE STYLING: The kind of style that is done in order to protect the ends of natural hair from drying out and cutting off. This could be in form of a bun, twists, Senegalese twists, box braids, flat twists e.t.c

SEALING: This is the process of applying oils to the hair strands after moisturizing with a leave in or moisturizer, to lock in the moisture

SEARCH AND DESTROY: Search for single strand knots on the hair to snip it off

SHRINKAGE: Kinky hair tends to shrink (become shorter) when it comes in contact with water. This is probably a way the hair naturally preserves the moisture as it is comes in contact with it. It occurs at different levels depending on hair type

SLIP: The degree to which a product, mainly conditioner, softens the hair, allowing fingers run through hair strands with ease

STRIPPED: When hair strands dries out as a result of product application. Could be caused by using sulphate shampoo

TRANSITION TO NATURAL: This is the process of allowing  your natural hair grow out underneath without relaxing your hair over a certain period of time. This time is often determined by an individual based on personal preference

TWA: Teeny Weeny Afro, the result of a big chop after a shot term transition to natural hair

TWO STRAND TWIST: Braiding the hair with two parts and twisting it

TWIST OUT: A style that involves twisting the hair, either when wet or dry, with a curl defining cream or gel and then unraveling it when dry to get a ringlet curly pattern

WASH AND GO: This means just washing one’s hair, applying a gel and letting it down.


  1. Really nice...this could help a JJC in the natural

    1. Yeah, I know. Such things helped me when I discovered the natural hair community. So I felt it could also be useful to someone else.

  2. interesting, very interesting