Take this Hair Porosity quiz to understand how to care for your hair!
Often we care for our hair according to our hair type. For example, it is likely that most people purchase specific products that are recommended for their type of hair.
However, did you know that hair porosity is another important factor to consider when it comes to properly maintaining and caring for your hair? Now if you have never heard of hair porosity, you may now be wondering what is hair porosity?
Essentially this term refers to your hair’s ability to retain and absorb moisture.
Hair porosity can affect certain types of hair more than others. It will likely affect individuals with textured hair more than others because curly hair typically lacks moisture.
Porosity can also be identified by the three following categories; high porosity, medium or normal porosity, and low porosity.
- Highly porous hair tends to have cuticles that are raised and widely distributed. This hair type is typically weaker and although it will absorb moisture, it will be less effective in retaining it.
- The cuticles of medium or normal porosity hair aren’t too tightly bound but they will hold onto the moisture. Normal Porosity has balance.
- Hair with low porosity has cuticles that are close together and flat. The strands of the hair will initially struggle to retain the moisture because any products that are applied don’t tend to reach the inner layers of hair.
Despite this, when you are able to get the moisture into your strands, it will last a while and the appearance of your hair will look more revitalized.
While genetics typically determine your hair porosity, there are several other factors that will contribute to and impact porosity levels.
This includes frequent exposure to heat when blow-drying or straightening your hair, the damage that can be caused by bleaching your hair, using products that contain harsh ingredients, and washing your hair too much.
Table of Contents
Why is it important to know your Hair Porosity?
Knowing your hair porosity is the first step to growing long and healthy hair and creating an effective hair care regimen. It actually is more important than knowing your curl type.Tweet
Although understanding your curl type is important, porosity is the key to hair growth. Natural hair needs moisture to flourish, and to ensure that your curls are moisturized it is essential to understand hair porosity. In addition, selecting the right products based on your porosity will save you time and money.
What is my hair porosity?
There are several tests that you can conduct to determine your hair porosity. Perhaps one of the easiest ways to test your hair porosity is using water. The state of your hair afterward will indicate your hair’s level of porosity.
First, you will need to wash, rinse and dry your hair. Then take a single strand of your hair and put it into a glass of water. It will either float or sink to the bottom of the glass.
- If you have low porosity hair the strand is likely to float before it sinks.
- If you have high porosity hair the strand is likely to sink to the bottom straight away.
- If you have medium porosity hair, the strand will likely float around the middle section of the glass.
Alternatively, you may choose to conduct a strand test.
To do this, you will need to gather strands of hair from different sections of your head. If your hair is curled, you will need to stretch these strands out. Take a single strand and run your fingers from the bottom to the root.
If you manage to slide your fingers up the strand easily and it feels a little dense, you have low porosity hair. If the strand of hair feels rough or it breaks as you move your fingers up it, it is likely that you have high porosity hair.
Furthermore, you have medium porosity hair if it feels smooth. Aside from this, each level of hair porosity will have its own characteristics. Low porosity hair is typically dry and products don’t tend to penetrate into each layer easily.
When you wash your hair, the water will also take a long time to soak into it. Medium porosity hair tends to have a healthy and glossy appearance. It also retains moisture easily and holds different styles well.
High porosity hair tends to absorb products fairly well although you will need to add more. You may also find that your hair dries very fast but is also prone to breaking easily.
If you are still a little overwhelmed by the above test options, you can just take this Hair Porosity Quiz!
You May Also Like: Hair Porosity Series
Can hair porosity change?
Hair porosity is typically determined by genetics, however, it can change throughout your lifetime. As mentioned there are certain factors that can impact the condition of your hair.
Overexposure to heat and chemicals as well as environmental damage such as pollution can all impact the porosity of your hair. Hair porosity can also be affected by age and hormone levels.
There are also steps that you can take to change the porosity of your hair. For example, if you have low porosity hair, you can use protein deep conditioners, moisturizing conditioners, and even vegetable oil.
High porosity hair will benefit from the application of deep conditioning treatments, as they will not only add moisture but softness to your hair too. It’s also worth trying out some thicker creams like shea butter or coconut oil as they will help to improve the shine.
Is the hair porosity test accurate?
Some would argue that a hair porosity test is not an accurate way of determining the porosity levels of your hair.
For example, when discussing the test that involves putting your hair into the water and seeing whether it floats, there are many other factors that will influence the result.
In most instances, it is likely that the strand will float because the natural oils in our hair will prevent it from sinking.
You may think that washing your hair gets rid of these oils but this isn’t the case as they are natural oils rather than oils from products that you have applied to your hair.
For this reason, many would suggest that the most accurate way of determining your hair porosity is to evaluate the characteristics of your hair and how these compare to those of low, medium, and high porosity hair.
Despite this, some individuals may still choose to test out some of the methods that we have highlighted above. Should you decide to do so, it is important to note that the natural oils in your hair are likely to influence the results of the test that you follow.