Hair Lingo 101: Thirty Must Know Hairstyling Terms

Learn Hair Lingo

Knowing how to speak the language in any field is a must, and the field of hair is no exception. When it comes to the world of hair, there are a few hair styling terms that you should be aware of.

It is imperative to be aware of styling terms whether you are a stylist or a customer. It is essential if you are a stylist to know what these terms mean so that you can offer various and specified services to your clients.

If you are a customer being aware of various hair styling terms can help you communicate with your stylist the exact look that you want. So don’t overlook these terms if you are someone who loves to get your hair done.

You never know when these terms will come in handy.

Hair Extension Terms You Need to Know

We’ve come up with 30 must know hair styling terms to help you along the way!


To make it easier for you we’ve broken down the terms by their specific categories.

There are so many ways to cut your hair. Let’s first start with popular hair styling terms for cutting hair.

#1 Asymmetrical Cut

A haircut where the hair is not symmetrical, and one side is longer than the other.

#2 Big Chop

The big chop is the haircut that marks the beginning of one’s natural hair journey. All hair that is permed, colored and chemically processed is cut off, and the only hair left on the head is the hair that is in its natural state.

The big chop is a big deal for natural hair girls all around the world. Many naturalistas all over the world can remember this big day. They take photos and write down the dates of their big chops to document their natural hair journey(s).

#3 Fringe (Bangs)

Also known as “bangs,” fringe a haircut where some of the hair lies over your face. If you’re wanting to make a change with your hair, but are apprehensive about a major cut, then try bangs as minor change that gives major impact.

#4 Graduated Cut

A graduated haircut is one that is a gradual progression of lengths from short to long. It ultimately creates a layered effect.

#5 Layers

Cutting your hair into various lengths to “layer” them and create a voluminous look.

#6 Pixie Cut

A woman’s layered short hairstyle that is cut to create a slightly tousled effect. From Zendaya to Rihanna are some pixie cut styles that we love!

#7 Razor Cut

A hairstyle where a cut is done with a razor to create a tapered effect.

#8 Undercut

A hairstyle you shave off the bottom into a buzz cut and where the top of the hair is long.


There are many hair conditions that you should be aware of when it comes to styling. Here are a few hair conditions that may affect hair growth and need treatment as soon as possible.

#9 Alopecia

This is a medical hair condition where the immune system mistakenly attacks hair follicles causing them to shed resulting in bald patches on the scalp.

#10 Shedding

When the hair falls from the scalp excessively this is considered shedding. Shedding is often caused by damaged hair and can cause hair loss or balding if not treated or taken care of properly.


There are many different types of color and color techniques.  Each coloring technique is used to create different effects when it comes to the contrast and color of your hair. Here are a few standard coloring techniques:

#11 Balayage

A highlighting technique that you do in a way that creates a gradual color effect for a natural sun-kissed look.

#12 Base Color

This is the color you apply before adding any other colors such as highlights to your hair (often used to color grey hair).

#13 Developer

Developer helps open up the hair cuticles to allow hair color to penetrate through for optimal coloring results.

#14 Highlights

Strands of hair that are dyed to make them lighter than the hair’s base color.

#15 Lowlights

Strands of hair that are dyed to make them darker than the hair’s base color.

#16 Ombre

A hair coloring technique where a lighter shade transitions into a darker shade. Ombre is usually darker at the roots and lighter at the ends.


With so many different types of hairstyles out there, let’s go over some of the terms you need to know when styling hair.

#17 Braid Pattern

The braid pattern is a foundation created by braiding your hair to prepare your hair for sew-in extensions.

#18 Texturizer

A milder version of a relaxer. Texturizer loosens the natural curl pattern without completely straightening it to a completely relaxed state.

#19 Touch-Up

A touch up is what it says, touching up your hair to make it look brand new again. Touch-ups are done with hair coloring, relaxers or perming.


Now that we’ve covered styling techniques lets go over hairstyles. With so many different types of hairstyles out there, let us go over some hairstyles that you may know by their look but not by their name. Here are some styles that you need to know.

#20 Flat Twists

You start by sectioning hair into various sections, twisting strands of hair, and then twisting two twisted strands around one another. Like braid outs, you can wear flat twists overnight or few hours then unraveled to reveal a curly hair texture.

#21 Braid Out

A hairstyle that you take sections of hair to apply product and then began braiding your hair. The braids are worn overnight or few hours and then unraveled to create a curl pattern within the hair.

#22 Bantu Knots

A hairstyle with coiled, small buns all over the head that look like knots. This style originates from the “Bantu people” of southern and central Africa.

It is a typical hairstyle for many women of African descent and used as low maintenance or curl enhancing style for women with natural hair.

#23 Lob

We are all familiar with the signature bob hairstyle. A lob is a longer version of the bob hairstyle.

#24 TWA

This is an acronym for “teeny weeny afro” which you can use to describe short natural hair.

#25 Virgin Hair

This is hair that is unprocessed, and chemicals weren’t used to treat it.

Here at HairLux, we offer virgin hair extensions at a great price. Our textures range from straight, kinky curly, natural wavy, loose waves and more!

There are many benefits to wearing virgin hair such as its durability when it comes to styling and coloring. Virgin hair is high-quality hair. It is known to last very long and great for various types of hairstyles.

Health & Treatments

Hair treatments are great when it comes to treating various hair conditions or getting your hair to be in a healthier state. Here are some hair treatments that can be used to promote the health of your hair.

#26 Co-Wash

This is a method where you wash your hair with conditioner instead of shampoo. This technique is used to retain moisture. Many Naturalista’s co-wash to avoid over drying their hair.

#27 Essential Oils

Natural oils such as castor, argan, carrot, olive oil, etc. that can be used on your hair to promote a healthy scalp and hair growth.

Many of our HairLux products contain essential oils along with other natural ingredients to promote healthy hair growth.

#28 Porosity

The measure of how much moisture can soak into your hair strands. Hair with a high porosity level absorbs moisture easily while hair with a low porosity level does not absorb moisture easily.

Here are some traits of high versus low porosity hair:

High Porosity

  • Hair easily absorbs water
  • Hair dries quickly
  • Requires more products
  • Frizz
  • Hair may often feel and look dry

Low Porosity

  • Hair takes a long time to dry
  • Rather than absorb products build up on hair
  • Natural oils don’t easily penetrate, but they sit on your hair
  • Curls take way longer to thoroughly saturate when wet

#29 Protein Treatment

A protein treatment strengthens your hair. It also adds extra proteins and nutrients to your hair to promote healthy hair. You can get this treatment at a salon, or you can do it yourself at home.  HairLux hair care products have a great protein treatment called, Argan Oil Growth Balm.

Here are some signs that your hair may be in need of a protein treatment:

  • You have recently colored your hair
  • Hair has lost its moisture
  • Your hair has a high porosity
  • Limp or stringy hair
  • Low elasticity hair
  • Hair feels sticky or gummy

#30 Relaxer

A chemical treatment used to straighten hair. (Many also call it a perm, but ultimately you must be careful because the term perm is also a chemical treatment that is used to add curls to hair.)

Speak Hair Lingo Like a Boss

I hope these definitions were helpful in getting you more familiar with various hair styling terms. Knowing these terms can help you communicate better with your stylist and make achieving your next hairstyle easier.

Knowledge is always necessary with what you do and with what you say. The next time you’re getting your hair done at the salon or styling your own hair, you can always refer to these terms and feel like a true hair lingo boss.

What are some common hair terms that you know of?  Share them with us in the comments below.