Understanding Your Hair Porosity
What should I use in my hair? Should I get a milk or a butter? We get this question ALL the time. Our advice? STOP! Don't buy another product!
Ladies the secret to finding the right products for your natural curls is THIS. Know your hair's POROSITY. Sounds simple, but surprisingly a lot of curly girls place more emphasis on curl type when looking for products. But it's actually more important to know your hair's porosity than it is to know your curl type.
Why? Because hair porosity in the key indicator of how your hair absorbs and retains moisture and moisture is the key to healthy natural hair.
Here's How To Figure Out Your Hair's Porosity
Take The Strand Test
Take a strand or two of clean hair either shed or from a comb or brush. Drop the hair into a glass of water for about 2-3 minutes. If the hair floats to the top of the water it’s low porosity hair, if it sinks to the middle you have medium to normal porosity hair. If it sinks to the bottom of the glass it’s high porosity.
Try The Slip and Slide Test
Hold a strand or two of hair and run your finger up the shaft of the hair toward the scalp. If while running your finger your hair shaft feels smooth you are on the low porosity hair side. If you feel bumps while running your hair along the shaft it’s high porosity.
Once you've determined what kind of porosity you're working with, here comes the fun part - Finding products and using hair care strategies that actually work for your porosity type.
Here's A Handy Guide
Low Porosity Hair
Hair cuticle is laying flat almost closed
Moisture is hard to get in because cuticles are tightly bound. But once moisture gets in it’s hard eacape
Hair has a shiny appearance
Hair takes forever to dry
Hair takes long to get fully saturated
Hair takes longer to chemically process
Experiences alot of product build up
Usually protein sensitive
What to do?
Use heat while deep conditioning to help open cuticles
Use products with humectants as humectants draw moisture to hair eg. honey and glycerin
Choose water based products such as light leave in conditioners and milks to easily penetrate the hair shaft.
Loves oils like jojoba, coconut, grapeseed and almond
Apply products to damp hair vs soaked
Use ACV ( Apple Cider Vinegar) rinse to help reduce product build up
Normal Porosity Hair
Requires little maintenance
Hair is healthy looking, full of volume and elasticity
Cuticle is looser/ slightly opened which allowing moisture absorption and retention
Occasional protein needed
Holds style and reacts well to chemical processes such as coloring
High Porosity Hair
Cuticle is raised/open and consist's of gaps and holes which allow too much moisture in and releases moisture just as easily
Hair is frizzy and tangles easily
Hair takes on a dry and dull appearance
What to do?
Use anti humectant products such as shea butter, mango butter, castor oil, olive oil and organic beeswax especially in humid climates
Sealing hair with oils is extremely important to hold moisture in
Layer leave in conditions, butters and oils while styling
High porosity hair responds better to heavier thicker products like butters and creams vs thin water based products
Use mimimal heat
Loves oils like castor, extra virgin olive oil, jojoba, hemp and coconut
Rinse hair with cold water after conditioning to help close cuticles.
You're all set doll! Follow the guide and let us know how it goes!