Hair porosity: definitionPorosity refers to the hair’s ability to absorb and retain moisture. It is defined by the shape of your hair’s cuticle: the more open the cuticles, the more porous the hair—and the more moisture it can absorb (up to 30% more!). At the same time, it is incapable of retaining moisture, and the constant absorption and release of water makes hair more fragile.
What causes hair to become more porous?Porosity can be caused by many different aggressors our hair is subjected to every day including: heat styling tools, colouring and bleaching, and excessive brushing. External factors such as air pollution and the environment we live in can also have an impact on hair porosity.
Porosity test: is it accurate?You’ve probably seen the popular porosity test that has been circulating online. To conduct the test, all you need to do is take a clean strand of hair and place it in a glass of water.
- If the hair stays at the surface, it has a low level of porosity.
- If it floats in the middle of the glass, it has a medium/normal level of porosity.
- If it sinks, it has a high level of porosity.
Although this test seems to be effective, it’s always a good idea to examine your hair and its reactions on a daily basis.
- If your hair is often very dry, damaged, dull, brittle and coarse like straw, there’s a good chance it’s highly porous.
- It it’s slightly dry, but still shiny, it likely has a normal degree of porosity.
- On the flip side, if your hair looks tired and lacks volume, it probably has low porosity.
The perfect level of hair porosityThere is no such thing as an ideal level of hair porosity since it really depends on the individual. Generally speaking, healthy hair has scales that are slightly open, allowing it to breathe and hydrate—in other words, medium porosity. Scales that are closed too tightly prevent hair from allowing moisture in and from absorbing products.
Changing your hair’s porosityIs it really possible to change your hair’s porosity? Absolutely! You can repair damaged and porous hair using protein-based products such as the ones in the PHYTOKERATINE line.
Keep in mind, however, that we all have our own hair type—and some of us have porous hair by nature. Your hair’s porosity can also change over time. And, while you can use products to prevent porosity from getting worse, you can’t completely change the type of hair you have.
You’re now equipped with all of the information you need to help your hair achieve its very best level of porosity!