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'Although there are no biochemical differences among black, Caucasian, and Asian hair types, there are differences in the hair morphology (8). Black hair appears elliptical or flattened in cross-section, whereas Caucasian hair is oval, and Asian hair round. The follicle of black hair is curved, in contrast to a straight follicle in Caucasians and Asians.' - Callender, V. D., McMichael, A. J. and Cohen, G. F. (2004), Medical and surgical therapies for alopecias in black women. Dermatologic Therapy, 17: 164–176. doi:10.1111/j.1396-0296.2004.04017.x
Khumalo NP, Doe PT,Dawber PR, Ferguson DJP.What is normal black African hair? A light and scanning electron-microscopic study. J Am Acad Dermatol 2000: 43:814–820.
'African hair is curly and frequently exhibits knots (9)'
'However, increased evidence of wearing with some loss of the cuticular pattern was observed towards the tip of the hair in all 3 racial groups (Fig 3, A-D). The most extreme wearing, with complete loss of cuticular structure, was seen toward the tip of the hairs of the Caucasian subject with the longest hair (Fig 3, B and C). However, the hair shafts of the African volunteers did exhibit structural damage with evidence of longitudinal fissures, resulting in splitting of the hair shafts ( Fig. 3 and Fig. 2). The splitting was also associated with knot formation (Fig 2, B). Longitudinal fissures were not observed in the Caucasian or Asian hairs. It was also observed that many of the black African hairs (approximately 40%) were fractured with no attached root.
'The African hair shafts were enclosed by a well-preserved cuticle (Fig 3, E) similar to that observed for the other racial groups ( Fig 3, F).'
'The most significant feature was that the majority of the tips of the African hair had fractured ends ...Similarly, the basal end also exhibited evidence of breakage in contrast to the Caucasian and Asian samples in which the majority of hairs had attached roots.'
'From these observations it could be proposed that any procedure that reduces knotting of hair and/or the need for combing would result in an increase in the length of the hair by reducing the incidence of breaks in the hair shafts.'
Konishi, S. (2008). tied in rolled knots and powdered with ochre’: Aboriginal hair and eighteenthcentury cross-cultural encounters. Borderlands, 7(2), 1-20.
Through the influential work of the great taxonomer, Carolus Linnaeus,... Homo europaeus ‘yellow, brown, flowing’, Homo asiaticus ‘abundant black’, and Homo afer ‘black, frizzled’ (cited in Rosenthal, 2004: 2).
This eighteenth-century definition and conceptualisation of African hair as ‘woolly’ intersected with slavery discourses which dehumanised the African body in order to justify its abject treatment. The Oxford English Dictionary indicates that this derogatory term signifying ‘the short, tightly-curled hair of Negroid peoples’ was first used in a runaway slave advertisement in 1697. This type of hair was also ascribed sexual connotations, for according to Allan Peterkin, ‘frizzy’ hair was seen as ‘demonic, licentious, and pubic’
... ‘Negro’ possessed ‘wool instead of hair’, and that this difference, in concert with others concerning skin and facial features, suggested that they ‘appear to constitute a new species of man’ (in Diderot and d’Alembert, 1765, v. 11: 76).
uaresma, M. V., Martinez Velasco, M. A., & Tosti, A. (2015). Hair Breakage in Patients of African Descent: Role of Dermoscopy. Skin Appendage Disorders, 1(2), 99–104. http://doi.org/10.1159/000436981
'In addition to these properties, the water content in African descent hair is slightly lower than in Caucasian hair, and the sebaceous glands often secrete an inadequate amount of sebum, which has an uneven distribution along the shaft due to its spiral shape, leaving the hair with a dry appearance. M [17,20]'
All info on hair shine was taken from: http://www.thenaturalhavenbloom.com/2011/10/does-shiny-hair-healthy-hair.html#comment-form, she cites this article: Ribeiro, H. M., Morais, J. A. and Eccleston, G. M. (2004), Structure and rheology of semisolid o/w creams containing cetyl alcohol/non-ionic surfactant mixed emulsifier and different polymers. International Journal of Cosmetic Science, 26: 47–59. doi:10.1111/j.0412-5463.2004.00190.x but it's clear the information came from elsewhere
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