Simply put, porosity refers to your hair’s ability to absorb and retain moisture. Hair can have a low level of porosity, a normal balance or be highly porous. A normal balance is ideal because it ensures that our hair absorbs and retains moisture adequately. Low porosity is not a concern either; it only means that it will take your hair longer to absorb chemicals.
Hair that is highly porous, on the other hand, has more difficulty absorbing moisture. Porous hair also absorbs chemicals and heat faster than hair that is less porous. Resultant, it is more susceptible to damage from over processing. Another problem with highly porous hair is how quickly it loses moisture. Because the cuticles is open and stressed, it readily absorbs and loses moisture, causing the hair to look and feel dry and straw-like.
Test your Hair’s Porosity
You can check whether your hair has a problem with porosity by completing a strand test. Glide your fingers through a strand of hair from root to tip and see whether the hair feels rough and dry at the ends. Another simple test is to place a few strands of hair in a cup of water and see how quickly they sink. Faster absorption of water (moisture) may seem ideal but it is not because highly porous hair will lose the moisture as quickly as it gains it.
What raises the Porosity Level of the Hair
Your hair’s porosity is affected by the use of chemicals, such as relaxers, hair dyes and highlights; artificial heat from blow dryers and flat irons; chlorine; harsh sulfate-containing shampoos and natural factors such as the sun. It is strongly recommended that you reduce your hair’s exposure to these agents to prevent irreparable damage to your hair.
Product that will help
Apple Cider Vinegar: Conditioning treatments that cater to the needs of those with overly porous hair [these products will be marketed as conditioner for “color treated hair”] are usually on the acidic side. Since Apple Cider Vinegar is also mildly acidic, it is a cheaper alternative to pricey conditioners. Apple Cider vinegar works the same in that it temporarily constricts the cuticles correcting porosity levels.
Take 1/3 cup of Apple Cider Vinegar and add it to 2-3 cups of cool Distilled water, use this mixture as a final rinse [do not rinse out], for shiny, tangle and frizz free hair.