Understanding Your Hair Porosity

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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.

Image via botoxforhair.net

Image via botoxforhair.net


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!