Does your hair easily lose its moisture? Or perhaps, no amount of product is able to penetrate your hair shaft. This is where hair porosity comes to play. In simple terms, hair porosity is how your hair absorbs and retains water/moisture. Knowing your hair porosity will do you good as it steers you in the direction of growing healthy hair.
Types of hair porosity
Essentially, there are three types of hair porosity - low, medium and high.
Low porosity means the hair is unable to soak up moisture easily and tends to be dry oftentimes. Water usually settles on the hair shaft to form water bubbles and takes a longer time to penetrate. This usually happens with tight curls hence predominant among people with 4C hair.
High porosity, on the other hand, is when the hair soaks moisture easily. As a result, it loses moisture just as easily as it soaks it up. This happens often on loose curls.
Medium porosity is in between. The cuticles of medium porous hair are in between very loose or tightly bound together. Most people either have low or high porosity.
Characteristics of hair porosity
- Hair cuticles are very compact making it difficult for moisture to penetrate
- Products used usually sit on top of hair and absorb slowly
- Air drying hair takes a while
- Hair has a lot of proteins consequently making it relatively dryer and more susceptible to breakage
- Usually resists colour treatments unless bleached
- Product tends to build up easily hence the need to wash hair often
- More prone to dandruff
- Requires heat during treatments to allow for easy penetration of products
- Absorbs moisture easily
- Loses moisture easily
- Air drying takes a shorter time
- Frizzy most of the time
- Hair is more likely to break or shed compared to the others
- Usually comes in the form of loose curls
- Doesn't have a lot of elasticity
How to take care of low and high porosity hair
- Deep condition during every wash day and use heat to allow for easy penetration of products whilst deep conditioning
- Protein treatment once every 4 to 6 weeks. Don't over-do it. Hair already has proteins
- Opt for lightweight oils (avocado, sweet almond oil, etc) to allow for easy penetration. Heavy oils tend to sit on hair and weigh it down
- Products used on hair should be water-based, especially leave in conditioners.
- Avoid using products with silicones, sulfates and parabens (Eya Naturals products do not contain these)
- Moisturize diligently
- Protect your hair with a satin or silk bonnet or scarf at night
- Don't soak your hair with so much product in order to avoid product build up.
- Use low heat or air dry hair after washing
- Opt for products rich in moisture and relatively heavier oils
- Protein treatments are a must
- Be gentle with your hair during wash days and styling
- Go in for protective styles to avoid over-manipulating hair
- Be careful when detangling hair
- Use lukewarm water when washing hair
- Section hair during detangling and washing
No matter the level of porosity of your hair, having a healthy regimen helps in growing and maintaining luscious hair. Ultimately, do what works for your hair.
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- Tags: 4C hair, coily hair, curly hair, Deep Condition, deep conditioning, detangling, detangling conditioner, heavy oils, high porosity, leave in conditioner, light oils, loose curls, low porosity, medium porosity, porosity, porous, retain moisture, tight curls