You can find out the level of porosity of your hair in 2 minutes

The hair porosity test is easy. You can also try it at home. Haircare products are divided into many categories and depending on the need you think you have, you choose the product you use. But there are times when, whatever you buy, whatever you do, your hair does not respond. They continue to frizz, insist on being hard and wild, lubricate immediately, and generally, nothing can “do them well”. So in order to help them, yes, you have to determine exactly what you want (smoothing, moisturizing, etc.) but before that, you have to know how porous your hair is. What is it and why is it important? We will explain it to you...

Hair – as you know – consists of scales. These scales open and close with heat (atmosphere and water) and this opening and closing is responsible for how smooth and shiny or frizzy and dull your hair is. But it is also responsible for the moisture levels of your hair and how effectively the nutrients penetrate and remain in each hair. So porosity is how open or closed the scales of your hair are and there are three levels…

hair porosity types

The low level of porosity where the scales are tightly closed. No, this is not good and does not mean that your hair is healthier. It simply means that your scales do not open and so it is very difficult for nutrients and moisture to penetrate from the products.

The normal level of porosity where the scales open relatively easily and close very well holding the right ingredients and moisture. Yes, that’s ideal.

The high level of porosity where the scales are almost permanently open and so moisture and nutrition “water” the hair quickly but, the faster they penetrate, the faster they disappear because the scales do not close. But what is the porosity due to? On the one hand, it is a matter of construction. Some hairs are more porous than others due to genes. Sometimes, however, the technical work, the styling, and the dyes destroy the hair and change its porosity. It is 50% -50%! So how do you know at what level your hair is to get the right measures? Take the test!


hair Glass test

Fill an oversized party glass for a contemporary floral arrangement. If the hair remains on the surface then your hair has low porosity. If it stays suspended somewhere in the middle of the glass then the porosity is normal and if it sinks to the bottom then you have high porosity. So what should you do?

If you have low porosity, LET YOUR HEAVY PRODUCTS DOWN. Yes, we shout. You may think that because they can not retain moisture and ingredients, you should turn to heavy-duty products but you will only be able to keep the product on the surface of the hair and dull it. You need thin products that can penetrate through the tightly closed scales of your hair.


 Low porosity hair problems and how you can cure it? 

If you have normal porosity then you do not have particular problems which means that your own hair responds to almost everything.

If you have high porosity, what you need to do is to “fill” the gaps between the raised scales and give your hair as much nourishment and moisture as possible. So heavy-duty products are for you even if you do not want to believe it! Well; Will you take the test to give your hair what it really needs?


 High Porosity Hair Characteristics and how to treat it? 

Hair Porosity And Methods for determining hair porosity

Hair porosity is the ability of the hair to absorb moisture. The degree of porosity is directly related to the condition of the hair cuticle.

Healthy hair with tight-fitting scales of the cuticle layer is resistant to the penetration of any chemicals and is called hydrophobic (moisture repellent). The surface of such hair is smooth, reflects light, and shines. In porous hair, on the other hand, the cuticle layer is raised or completely absent, the coat is matte and readily absorbs moisture, and is considered hydrophilic (absorbs moisture).

There are three types of hair by porosity:

low porosity;
average porosity;
high porosity.

types of hair porosity

 Low porosity hair

Hair with low porosity is considered healthy and resistant to chemical attack. As a rule, hair is gleaming, especially if it is dark in color. If you try to wet your hair, it repels moisture. Hair with this porosity is challenging to handle as it resists the penetration of chemicals. On such hair, preparations with a more alkaline pH, heat, or longer processing times are used. Alkaline preparations raise the cuticle layer, allow the practices to penetrate and work evenly inside the hair. The heat also speeds up the penetration of drugs into the hair. However, in some cases, this is not enough, and you have to pre-treat the hair to open the cuticle layer.

Hair with low porosity tends to accumulate protein-rich hair care on its surface. This makes this type of hair stiff, like straw, and heavy. Therefore, in caring for such hair, it is essential to use very light cosmetics with moisturizing components (such as glycerin and propylene glycol) that are practically protein-free, so that this care does not settle on the surface of the hair and does not make them oily. For deeper penetration of the treatment into the hair, you can also warm it up slightly immediately after applying the mask or conditioner.

 Medium (normal) porosity hair: 

Medium porosity hair is normal. Their cuticle layer is slightly loose and allows retaining only the necessary amount of moisture in the hair. That is, on the one hand, it prevents its intense evaporation, and on the other hand, a substantial accumulation of water in the hair. These hairs tend to hold the style well, chemically curl and color with predictable results. They do not require special procedures and solutions. For a given degree of porosity, standard formulations, techniques, and processing times are sufficient. However, over time, these hairdressing treatments damage the hair and increase its porosity.

Hair with medium porosity can occasionally be treated with deep penetrating medicated conditioners with proteins that provide tangible benefits. However, protein should not be found in large amounts in daily hair care formulations, as it can also cause cumulative adverse effects.

 Porous hair

Highly porous hair is considered super absorbent, and this quality of hair is usually the result of previous chemical treatments, high-temperature exposure, lack of proper care, environmental damage, or an intrinsic property of the hair (such as curly hair). Porous hair – damaged hair or very frizzy hair – dry, brittle, and brittle. They have lesions or large holes in the cuticle that allow too much moisture to evaporate and make them prone to frizz, also in wet weather. Even simple activities such as bathing, swimming, and shampooing can cause even more damage to the hair due to the enormous amount of moisture that can be absorbed by highly porous hair.

These hairs are treated with preparations with a lower alkali content – low pH to prevent further damage, and select care products are used to regulate porosity before hairdressing. These products do not 100% eliminate the problem of porosity, but they partially fill the voids in the hair and prevent the rapid absorption of dyes and curling compounds. Since porous hair quickly absorbs all preparations, the processing time is therefore short. However, the effects of any procedure do not last long (the color is washed soon out, and the curls are straightened).

In caring for such hair, it is imperative to use superior products (mainly silicone-based) that prevent moisture from absorbing into such hair. This is especially important in climates with high temperatures and humidity. This will help seal the damaged cuticle and prevent porous hair from absorbing excess moisture from the air.

Due to its high porosity, this type of hair can also quickly lose moisture, so it is essential to use leave-in conditioners and moisturizing treatments. These products will help maintain the moisture level in your hair. You can also use a protein-rich revitalizing treatment to provide a “cure” to help fill in the damage in the cuticle layer and further protect your hair from losing more moisture.

Methods for determining hair porosity

The features of the structure (thickness) of the hair can be associated mainly with porosity. For example, thick, healthy Asian hair usually has low porosity and is challenging to treat chemically. However, it’s worth noting that this is just a healthy hair trend. Hair of the same Asians fades in the sun, is lightened by hairdressers, and is not always kept in shape by professional care. As a result, they are damaged and have high porosity, regardless of the cause of its appearance. Therefore, it is essential to understand the trends in hair characteristics associated with ethnicity, but at the same time, take into account merely the human factor. Therefore, it is essential to determine the porosity of the hair to choose the right preparations for the subsequent procedure.

To determine the porosity of the hair, strands are selected in different areas of the head. One-handed hair is supported. On the other hand, the thumb and forefinger are combed from the ends to the scalp. This procedure is carried out exclusively on dry hair.

On hair with low porosity, fingers glide smoothly, and the strand does not comb. Hair with medium porosity is easy to comb, but the fingers feel rough. In the case where a strand is very easy to comb and difficult to comb, even with a comb, the hair is considered very porous and damaged.

 Alternative methods for determining hair porosity 

There are also methods for determining the porosity of the hair, based on the absorption of water by the hair:

Water is sprayed onto dry hair, and the absorption of drops is observed within 1 minute. If the water is immediately absorbed, then the hair is considered porous, if after a while, it is absorbed, then normal. If the water is not soaked for a long time – more than 1 minute, but the hair is considered closed.

Please take a few hairs and place them in a tall glass of water with warm water (not cold and not hot). In this case, 1 minute is recorded, and it is tracked how quickly the hair got water and drowned. Hair with low porosity is slightly submerged in water or remains on the surface for 1 minute or even longer (30 minutes in the video). Hair with medium porosity sinks slowly, and the longer it falls, the tighter the scales are closed. Porous hair immediately picks up water and sinks.

Hair porosity test