What is hair porosity? It is your hairs ability to absorb moisture. There are 3 main categories. High, medium and low porosity.
Hair that is high in porosity usually absorbs moistures very fast and also loses it quite fast. That is due to the hair cuticles being open most of the time. This type of hair can handle heavy products.
Medium porosity hair absorbs and retains moisture quite well. If you have this kind, consider yourself lucky! The hair cuticles open to accept the moisture and can trap it in quite well.
Low porosity hair has cuticles that are closed. Moisture cannot penetrate the hair shaft easily. It requires heat to open up the cuticles to accept moisture and even so it cannot handle heavy products.
I have low porosity hair. How did I find that out? I did a test on my hair. I took a few strands of my hair and immersed it into a cup of water and let it sit for 10 minutes. It stayed afloat the water. High porosity hair sinks to the bottom of the cup due to it absorbing the water. Medium porosity hair stays in the middle of the cup generally.
Now why is it important to know your hair porosity? It helps to know what kind of products to use on your hair.
I’m going to talk about high and low porosity. Let’s start off with high. High porosity hair loves thick and heavy products. It mainly loves thick oils and butters such as castor oil, shea butter, mango butter, avocado oil,
Low porosity hair loves light oils because they absorb more easily into the hair shaft. It primarily loves grapeseed oil, argan oil, jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, flaxseed oil & apricot kernel oil. It generally doesn’t love butters. Strangely enough, even though I have low porosity hair my hair does kinda like shea butter. I once made a DIY mix of shea butter, grapeseed oil, tea tree oil and jojoba oil. My hair currently loves it. I normally use it to pre-poo but it also loves it as a final step to sealing moisture after wash day.
Low porosity hair needs heat in order for the cuticles to open. I don’t have a steam cap so I normally use my body heat to do this. I use the baggy method to infuse heat onto my hair. The baggy method is simply covering my hair with a plastic bag and that creates a steam room effect on my hair when I’ve applied conditioner or my pre-poo treatment. I also wash my hair with warm water so that it helps to open my cuticles.
Biggest problem with low po hair is that it can feel greasy due to oils sitting on top of the hair shaft & not being properly absorbed by the hair. That’s why these oils are good for this type of hair as they are light and absorb quite easily.
Have you tested your hair porosity? Which products are you currently using to accommodate your hair porosity? Do you find that your hair loves products that are generally not for your hair porosity?