Root Clipping: How to Create Volume in Type 2 or 3 Hair

Megan Dominion

What is Type 2-3 Wavy or Curly hair?

Type 2 hair comprises types 2A, 2B and 2C. These hair types might look like classic beach waves that are straight at the roots and then start to curl or wave at your ear level. Type 3 comprises of 3A, 3B and 3C.  This is where curls and ringlets become more prominent. Often people have a combination of different types of hair, and not just straight 2B, or 3A for example.

These hair types can often lack volume and the closer you get to type 2A, the harder time your hair may have holding curls and definition. In this article, we’re going to chat about the two most effective methods for adding volume to wavy and curly hair at the roots.

Root clipping for wavy to curly hair: A Step by Step Guide

Have you heard of root clipping? It’s a really fun, easy and inexpensive way to add volume to your wavy or curly hair and it takes SECONDS to do! It’s all over TikTok, too! Follow these simple steps for even better hair:

1. Start with wet hair, after you’ve added styling foam or mousse. Try not to use use creams, gels or oils as these will give your hair the opposite effect of volume and can make your locks look heavier, less defined and weighed down

2. Use jaw-like hair clips of different sizes on different parts of your hair. This will come down to trial and error based on your hair’s style, e.g if you have a fringe or layers in your hair.

3. Tilt your hair to an angle and start placing your clips quite close to your scalp but not directly against it. Take a small section of your hair and clip so that the roots stand up / are exposed. The more clips = more volume.

4. Once your clips are placed, leave your hair to air dry OR you can use a diffuser. If air drying your hair, don’t go for a jog, exercise or be in the wind while it’s drying.

5. THE most important step is to ensure that your hair is 100% dry before removing the clips.

If you’re a fan of hair plopping, then you can still use this method once you’ve completed the plopping process. You just might have to change the kind of products that you’ve put into your hair to ensure that you’re getting as much volume as possible with the clipping method!

Does styling your hair upside down work for volume?

One downside that has been reported about hair plopping is that you might lose volume at the back of your head. This comes down to technique, but many curlies and wavies find that upside down styling gives them more volume at the back of their head. Let’s break down the method!

How to plop your hair for volume

1. You need to be completely ‘upside down’ and not just leaning over. A quick hack is: If you can see your feet, then you’re simply leaning over. Your hair should be touching your knees to get the full benefit of the technique!

2. You start the upside down styling once your hair is wet. You will follow your usual styling and scrunching method, except while ‘completely’ leaned over – ensuring that your hair isn’t touching the sides or back of your head

3. Plop for a shorter amount of time. This comes down to trial-and-error (and your hair’s porosity), but 15 – 20 minutes should do the trick! Read our top 8 mistakes when plopping for some more tips!

4. Ensure that there is enough product at the back of your head, as this is where volume tends to fall flat.

5. Diffuse as a combo. We know that diffusing can take up to 45 minutes, and we don’t recommend having your upper body upside down for that amount of time. Instead; do a combo of diffusing completely upside down (not leaning over) and then completely rightside up. It might seem like a workout, but it will be worth it!

Styling hair upside down

Remember, there is no 100% right and wrong way to style your hair. Half the fun is in experimenting and figuring out which techniques work best for YOUR hair, and your styling preference!

You might also find some answers to achieving great type 2 volume here: 6 potential reasons why your naturally curly has gone straight

Megan Dominion

Megan Dominion is SILKUP's Managing Editor. She's been down both the curly hair and skincare rabbit holes many times and loves that there's always something new to learn; a new science, method, product or personal experience.