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What Exactly is Hair Porosity and How to Find It?

What is Hair Porosity and How to Find it?
Don't know how to check the porosity of hair? We presents to you detailed information about hair porosity and also a few tests which will determine the category of porosity your hair falls in.
Mukta Badipatla
Last Updated: Mar 29, 2019
Did You Know?
boy girl smiling
Curly hair has a natural tendency to be high in porosity. Because, when hair spirals up, its cuticles are slightly raised above the longitudinal axis of the hair, resulting in a wider gap between them.
hair cuticle
The term 'porosity' can be easily explained as the ability of hair to disseminate liquids and gases to-and-fro, from the cuticle and back and forth through the cortex.
Our hair is composed of flexible and responsive scales of cuticle, which tend to overlap each other. The level of porosity of one's hair depends on how compactly the cuticles have bound to the hair shaft.
Also, the contiguity of the cuticles is another major criteria for the porosity of the hair. The optimum balance of moisture in the hair is important to maintain its strength and flexibility.

The most essential factor before choosing any kind of hair product is to understand the porosity of your hair.
Otherwise, you will always end up buying the wrong stuff for yourself. Low porosity of hair will lead to dry and frizzy hair, whereas high porosity will lead to easy breakage of the hair. It's time to find out what level of porosity your hair is at. Read on, and find out how to check the porosity of your hair and the different types of hair porosity.
Hair Porosity Tests
◾ Test 1
After washing your hair, take a strand and put it in a glass of water. Check if the hair strand sinks to the bottom of the water. If it does, then you have highly porous hair. And, if the strand floats on the water surface and doesn't sink, then its porosity is low. But if it floats in the middle of the glass and stays there, then it is of normal porosity.
◾ Test 2
Wash your hair and let them air dry. Do not use a blow dryer. Once the hair is dry enough, take a section of it and spray it with water. If the sprayed water rolls off quickly, then it is indicative of non-porous hair. But if the water soaks into the hair, then your hair is porous.
◾ Test 3
Once you wash your hair, wait until it is dry. Avoid using any products on it till you finish this test. Now, run your fingers through your hair, from the hair tip to the root. If your hair porosity is low, it will feel sleek and silky, whereas normal hair will give a smooth feel. If your hair is highly porous, it will feel greasy.
Low Porosity
When the cuticles of the hair are very tightly bound, then this type of hair is regarded to be low in porosity. This type repels water and harmful chemicals. Therefore, this type is considered healthy. When deep conditioning products are applied to such hair, there is an excessive accumulation of protein, which tends to make it look stiff and dry.
How to Increase Hair Porosity
● Refrain from using products with low pH. These products are high in acidity, which doesn't allow the cuticle to open up. Use products that are alkaline. Products containing humectants and high moisture content are apt for this hair type.
● To lift the cuticles and infuse them with moisture, you can steam your hair, by sitting under a hair steamer for about 15-30 minutes.

● You can apply a good amount of concentrated hair conditioner and cover your hair in a plastic shower cap. Leave the cap overnight and wash it the next morning.
High Porosity
hair concept
Hair becomes excessively porous when it is damaged and has been subjected to extremely harsh chemicals. The cuticles of the hair are so wide open that water or other moisturizing agents are overly drawn into the hair.
This hair is more prone to damage from pollution or harsh chemicals. When there is high amount of humidity in the atmosphere, then highly porous hair will become greasy and very difficult to manage. Also, this hair type will take longer than usual to dry and will always look oily.
How to Decrease Hair Porosity
● Make sure that you use products containing anti-humectants. This type of hair is damaged and has holes in its cuticles. Therefore, rinse hair with a moderately acidic product, which can help in sealing and repairing the damaged cuticles.
apple cider
● Apple cider vinegar also helps in closing the cuticles of the hair. Use a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, once a week. It will help in stabilizing the pH of the hair and will provide the required nourishment to highly porous hair.
Normal Porosity
People with normal hair porosity are the most fortunate, as it requires the least amount of maintenance. It permits moisture and water to get into the cortex, and effectively resists excess water to escape from the hair. Therefore, this type of hair is smooth and easily manageable.
What May Affect the Porosity of Hair?
● The level of porosity depends upon the type of hair. Some people genetically inherit the particular type of porosity.

● Frequently exposing hair to UV rays can reduce porosity. Therefore, make sure that you protect your hair with a scarf or cap before going out in the sun.
hair salon
● Repeated use of hair colors, bleaches, and heated hair appliances can create gaps in the cuticles, which can lead to high porosity.

● Using harsh soaps on hair or a narrow-toothed comb on wet hair will result in an impaired porosity of the hair.
If your hair has normal porosity, don't be carefree about it. Do take measures to maintain this condition of your hair by avoiding harsh treatments, and nourishing it to the fullest. Always remember that prevention is better than cure.