Why Is My Hair Curly When It’s Long but Straight When Short

Why is my hair curly when it's long but straight when short

I’ve noticed something pretty perplexing about my hair. It seems to grow curly when it’s long but straight when short. This incident got me asking myself several questions.

First, I asked myself if this doesn’t mean I’m getting old. But I also began to wonder if there might be something flagrantly wrong with my shampoo? Then I realized this: most people experience this at some point.

My frustrations with my curly hair are among my many reasons to research and write about this topic. I’ll be sharing mind-blowing facts and tips about curly hair.

Every hair, regardless of texture or color, naturally turns curly as it grows long. How exactly this happens is something that has eluded many scientists. The only explanation they can offer is the processes behind the curly shape of our hair when it grows long. I’ll try to explain that here.

Why is my hair curlier when it’s longer?

It is usual for hair to become curlier as it grows long. The curly texture may worry some girls though, especially if they’re not the bouncy curl type.

Here is why your hair becomes curlier when it’s longer:

The more your hair grows, the heavier it becomes. That means the weight of your hair is likely to pull curls. But sometimes, even your curly hair may suddenly change and become straight. No matter how short or long it is.

Your hair has various nanoscale substructures laced together to make intricate patterns. The foundation of your hair is the protein keratin, which consists of long chains of amino acids. It is from amino acids that you are likely to develop curly hair. But other factors play a massive role in the formation of curly hair as well.

Some of them include genetics and hormones. Let’s look at each:

  • Genes – I’m sure you’re aware that much of what you look like comes from a combination of your parent’s DNA. That includes your curly hair, too. So, if you have a dominant gene for curly hair, expect your hair to become curly at some point. If one of your parents has more curly hair, your hair will become curly as it grows long.

This study, which focuses on the genetics of waves and curls, found a heritability of between 85 and 95 % in people with too much curly hair.

  • Stress – Emotional disorders such as stress can be enough to trigger curly hair.
  • Hormonal changes – Hormones may also influence follicle structure. For example, when you’re pregnant, your hair may become thicker or curlier than usual.

Hormones can also influence your hair follicle structure at different ages. Scientists still need to identify different scenarios that may cause your hair to be curly.

Hormone fluctuations during the adolescent stage may make your hair curly.

  • Your thyroid – Your thyroid produces two hormones: thyroxine and Triiodothyronine. Scientists have observed that specific hair texture and volume changes are commonly associated with thyroid abnormalities.
  • An increase in androgen hormones – According to Science World, an increase in androgens can change the shape of the hair in men.

For instance, your hair follicle may change from straight to curly. If you have a hair follicle, your hair strands are likely straight. But if you have a flat bristle, your hair is likely curlier.

Is hair curlier when short or long?

Hair is usually curlier when long. When your hair is long, it will have this waviness and curliness. That doesn’t mean if your hair is highly wavy, it should be classified as curly.

If your natural hair is curly, when you cut your hair, you won’t necessarily get rid of curls. What happens is your curls will become lighter. But as your hair grows, the curliness will stretch out like Uhm, Julia Garner’s hair?

Remember, curl patterns are not the same for everyone. Some are loose. Others are not. If your hair has an open curly pattern, it is likely to appear straighter even when your hair is short.

Can straight hair turn curly when long?

Unfortunately, yes ( or fortunately, if you like curly hair)! Your straight hair can turn curly when long. You can use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner to do this.

Will my hair change shape?

As we all grow older, the shape of our hair is likely to change too. Nutrition, the lifestyle we live, and hormones all play a massive role in this. For instance, if you have straight hair, it is likely to change to become curly when you hit your 40s.

Why does my hair become curlier in humid climates?

Another exciting thing I’ve noticed about my hair is that it tends to become curlier in humid climates. I started wondering if this had anything to do with my genes. After seeing other people living in humid climates getting curly hair, it became clear that physical properties had more to do with it.

So any hair can become curlier in a humid climate because of water molecules that float around in moist air. The water molecules pull in different directions, making them curly.

How do I make my wavy hair more curly?

Fortunately, there is something you can do to make your wavy hair curly. Consider doing one of the following:

1.Get an anti-frizz conditioner – There are several products you can use to make your hair curly. For example, you can consider an anti-frizz conditioner like Living Proof No Frizz Conditioner.

Ideally, get an anti-frizz conditioner that can fight off the dryness simultaneously. Then use it once or twice a week.

2.Consider scrunching your hair – If you have wavy hair, scrunching can be one of the easier ways of making your hair curly. You will use your fingers to squeeze the end of your curls up gently. This way, you will create an accordion effect.

When you step out of the shower, blot the moisture from your hair, and allow your hair to form curls by scrunching it.

3. Consider pinning your curl

Find curling wands that can treat your wavy hair. While at it, avoid using any hot tools as they will make your hair less curly. Instead, use pin curls to treat wavy hair. After taking a shower, wait for your hair to partially dry. Then start twisting a piece of your hair into a bun. It is the cutest thing you can do on your hair.

4. Trim your hair

If you try everything else, and nothing seems to work. Then it would help if you considered trimming your hair. After getting a trim, you will notice that bouncy curly hair you love.


Lastly, your hair may be becoming curly because of your hair type. If you are unsure what’s your hair type. Do some research. If you were born with a curly pattern, flaunt your bouncy curls.

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