Long 4c Natural Hair Case Study: Mwedzi

Mwedzi is one of the most famous, non-famous naturals. She has maintained a fotki account for quite a long time but has not updated it for a while. She is not one to crave publicity, so let us all just be happy that she has left her fotki albums up! In truth, she could have chosen to delete all her albums as she is clearly paring down her online presence.

Mwedzi has the most ridiculously gorgeous, super shrinky 4c hair. I regard her hair as the bench mark for what shrinkage really means. She has made no secret of the fact that long 4c hair is time consuming to maintain and I think that as desirable as long hair may seem, there is a clear message that it is not easy to maintain.

Here are her stats in the usual case study format!

Long 4C Natural Hair Case Study: Mwedzi

Hair Length Waist length
ShrinkageVery High - Waist length to 4-5 inches long
Strand Thickness  Medium to Thick
Overall Hair Density Medium to High
Time Taken to Reach Longest Length Approximately 5 years with several major cuts along the way

Styling for Length Retention -Protective style - normally twists
-Low manipulation, twists worn for around 3 weeks at time to reduce combing to once every 3 weeks. Hair is washed weekly in twists
-Avoid hair tangling as much as possible
Moisturising Routine No fixed routine. 
Detangling Method Finger detangling for less breakage, wide tooth comb for a faster pace
Washing Routine Once a week. Detangle before washing with castor oil and conditioner. Wash hair in sections - at least 10 twists or braids
Trimming Routine 3-4 times a year (taking off around 4 inches per year in total)

Tangle teezer - Hair splitting after a few months of use, required a 2-3 inch trim

The data in the table above is compiled from the following sources
1. Mwedzi's fotki
2. Interviews featuring Mwedzi on africanhairblog and curlynikki

*Disclaimer: Please note that hair typing is NOT a science, for the purpose of this series, the people featured are identified solely by me (Jc) as having 4c hair characterised by a tight curl and high shrinkage. Many people with 4c hair may identify their hair as 4a/4b if they are following the actual book reference for hair type which does not include 4c. 4c was created by natural hair forums to describe high shrinkage hair


  1. Can't get enough of these case studies. Great info.

  2. wow, only 5 years and she cuts off 4 inches a year? she must have fast growth. the pony tail twist is just crazy sexy! I agree that long natural hair, particularly 4c hair isn't for lazy people!
    with pintrest, instagram, tumblr and facebook, who still goes on fotki? lol. may be she moved to one of those accounts?


    1. Hair accounts are still huge on fotki. The value is that they can be more private. I actually think people lose out by expecting to see 4c naturals on the standard platforms you have listed. I would guess that there are atleast 5-10 times more naturals with 4c hair on fotki.

  3. This is interesting. Also, I've been using my Tangle Teezer Originals from Sally Beauty Salon for over 4 years and they have never given me split ends. :O


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