By Winnie The Fashionista | Oct 10, 2018
Legend has it that once you know your hair porosity,you’ve figured it all out; the key to your natural hair journey. And legend is right. Porosity is the hair’s ability to let in moisture into the hair shaft. Basically, how well does moisture and product pass through your hair cuticle and into the hair shaft? The cuticle is the outer covering of the hair. A protective layer of sorts.
Porosity can be classed as : Low, medium and high.
The number one test for determining your porosity is the Float Test. Take a couple of strands from your scalp( painful,I know) and drop them in a bowl/cup of water. Let stand for about 5 minutes. If your hair sinks to the bottom, you have high porosity. This means moisture is readily and quickly absorbed into the hair. If your hair sinks to midway in the glass/bowl, this means you have medium porosity. Now, if your hair stayed put on top of the water, then you have porosity. Like me. This means that even if you leave your hair strand in water for a whole day, it’s not sinking nowhere honey.
Having low porosity means your cuticles are laid down and are resistant to let in moisture and products. Most of the time your hair gets dry so you need a little help. This means that you need to be using more alkaline products to lift your cuticles to enable moisture/product to get in and nourish your hair. You can also use a steamer to help lift cuticles. This also means your hair is prone to product build-up since product just sits on your hair and goes nowhere. Consequently, you need to use products with moisturizing properties such as shea butter and coconut oil to keep hair moisturized. Avoid extremely heavy products which may cause build-up.
This kind of porosity is moderate. Your hair can absorb products and hold moisture pretty well. It is not on either extreme end of the porosity scale. You can use most products available on the market, hurrah! You don’t need to spend time on the aisles looking at ingredient lists.
High porosity means your cuticles are almost wide open. Moisture is absorbed very quickly and is lost equally as fast. The advantage is that moisture enters readily which means you need to use less product. The disadvantage is that your hair can be prone to major frizzing and tangling. Your hair can change with the slightest humidity or everyday activities like swimming. What you need to do is seal the cuticle to prevent moisture loss or entry. Use more acidic products like Apple Cider Vinegar, to seal your cuticles. Also, use heavier products and layer them. Use heavier oils like castor oil to hold on to the moisture.
Now that you know about hair porosity, you can customize your hair regimen accordingly. The more you know, the better!
Check out Tips To Protect Your Natural Hair for ways to improve your hair care regimen.
DISCLAIMER: We endeavour to always credit the correct original source of every image we use. If you think a credit may be incorrect, please contact us at [email protected]
Sign up for our newsletter and get notified when we upload a new article.