Hey Chicas! Here’s another natural hair lesson. I will be posting a few blogs about porosity.I used to think that as long as the product says “MOISTURIZING”, I should buy it. Turns out that’s not the case.Knowing about porosity will help you properly moisturize your hair and make better shopping practices regarding your natural hair. This summer, the sun is beaming with a vengeance here in Jamaica, and you know what that means, moisture loss. This means you’ll have to moisturize your hair to prevent dry hair.But by knowing your hair porosity, you will be able to know what will and will not work for yo hair.><
What is hair porosity?
Porosity is your hair’s ability to absorb and hold moisture. For the most part, hair porosity is genetic, however, external factors such as heat usage, climate etc. can alter your hair’s porosity.Hair porosity can be low, medium or high.
How to know what type of porosity you have
- Take the quiz at Shea Moisture.com.
- The Slip’n’Slide Test: Take a strand of hair and slide your fingers up the shaft (toward the scalp). If you feel little bumps along the way, this means that your cuticle is lifted and that you have high porosity. If your fingers slip smoothly, then you have low porosity hair.
- The Float Test: Take a couple of strands of hair from your comb or brush and drop them into a bowl of water. Let them sit for 2-4 minutes. If your hair floats, you have low porosity. If it sinks, you have high porosity.
I recommend doing these tests when your hair is clean and free of any product. When doing the float test, use room temperature water. Cold water closes hair cuticles and warm water opens them. Follow these tips to avoid misleading results.
Types of Hair Porosity
Forgive me for my preschool like drawing 😀
With low porosity hair, the cuticle layer is tightly bound with overlapping scales that lay flat. It repels moisture when you try to wet it and is hard to process since it resists penetration of well, almost everything.Low porosity hair is also prone to build-up which can leave it feeling stiff and straw-like.
This hair type is extremely picky and protective of itself. It prefers moisturizers rich in emollients such as jojoba oil humectant products, which attract and hold moisture to your hair such as collagen. Choose lighter, liquid-based products such as hair milks that won’t sit on your hair and leave it oily or greasy.
With medium porosity hair, the cuticles are half opened and half closed. They allow just the right amount of product into the hair,requires the least maintenance and can be styled with predictable results (lucky people). However it has its needs just like any hair.
Occasional deep conditioning treatments with protein conditioners can benefit medium porosity hair, but proteins should not be included in your daily regimen.
High porosity hair has cuticles that are very open. It can be caused from genetics or heat damage.It welcomes products very easily which can result in frizzy hair.Because highly porous hair can also lose moisture easily, it’s important to use leave-ins, conditioners, moisturizers and sealers. Layering these products will help your hair hold on to the moisture you’re giving it.A hair butter can be used to fill the gaps in the hair and prevent it from losing too much moisture.
Well, that’s it for today. For my next post, I’ll go more in depth about low porosity hair and how you can care for it. Ciao now!