Porosity, Your Hair and The Porous Hair Test

Hi guys, welcome back to CamilleLove. Today I will be talking all about hair porosity.

Porosity is your hair’s ability to absorb moisture and is broken down into three categories: low, normal and high. There is an easy way to test the porosity of your hair right in the comfort of your own home. Before reading the rest of this post I encourage you to perform this test.

Floating Hair Test

Hair porosity test preview

Step 1: Take a couple strands of hair and drop them into a bowl or cup of water. Make sure it is something you can see through.

Step 2: Let them sit in the bowl for two to four minutes.

Step 3: Observe your strands of hair. What did they do? If your hair is floating at the top then you have low porosity hair. Strands that sink to the bottom of the water mean you have high porosity hair. If your hair did not move much then you have normal porosity hair.

By now you should know your hair porosity, so let’s get into exactly what each one entails. Let’s start with low porosity hair.

Low porosity hair follicle

Low porosity

Low porosity hair has pores that are tightly closed, which means it is hard for moisture to get in. However, once moisture does get in it is locked in tight.


– Curls take a long time to dry.

– Products tend to build up on curls easily.

– Natural oils tend to sit on your hair.

– Curls take much longer to get fully saturated when you wet them.

In order to lock in moisture you will have to do a little extra work. Using a deep conditioner and then applying heat works very well. Also, using a steamer from time to time can be helpful. Using a sulfate free shampoo will also benefit your hair. When cleansing your hair it is important to find shampoo’s that will clarify your hair and add elasticity. If you have low porosity hair you should also co-wash your hair often.

My hair is low porosity hair, so I don’t like to use shampoo every time I wash my hair. I have found that using shampoo every other week and co-washing in between helps my hair out a lot.

As for moisturizing, following the LCO method works best for most (everyone’s hair is different). Instead of using  liquid, oil and then sealing your hair with cream (LOC) it is best to start with a liquid leave in, then follow up with a cream and use an oil to seal in moisture. I use this method and it works well for me. Sometimes I choose to forgo the cream step, simply because products build up on low porosity hair very easily.

Lastly, sleeping with a satin bonnet, pillowcase or both will benefit you! Satin does not strip moisture from your hair. This is important to follow because it is already difficult for this hair type to lock in moisture. This will help ensure that the moisture you have in your hair stays!

Normal porosity hair follicle

Normal porosity

Normal porosity hair is a breeze to take care of! Well, it may not be a breeze, but you don’t have to worry as much about moisturizing your hair. Your hair cuticles are compact and moisture can easily enter in.


– Curls are full with bounce and elasticity

– Does not require as much maintenance as low porosity and high porosity hair

– Moisture is easily received and maintained inside hair cuticles

– Holds styles well and can be easily colored

Deep conditioning regularly is good to maintain product absorption. In order to make sure your hair doesn’t dry out keep heat usage to a minimum. Just because your hair has normal porosity does not mean you should ignore what it naturally needs. Make sure to listen to your hair. If you find a product doesn’t work so well, let it go. Also make sure to find a routine and stick to it the best you can.

High porosity hair follicle

High porosity

High porosity hair contains many open cuticles along each strand of hair. Moisture can get in easily, however it is hard for moisture to stay in. That is the main difference between high porosity hair and low porosity hair. As I said above, it is hard for moisture to get into low porosity hair, but once it does the moisture stays. High porosity hair on the other hand gets moisture easily, but since most of the hair cuticles are open it is hard to seal in moisture.


– Dry and brittle hair

– Dull hair (hard for it to reflect light/shine)

– Hair dries quickly

– Curls absorb water, but require more product

– Curls are frizzy

Sometimes high hair porosity can be developed because of the way you manage your hair. If you are constantly adding in chemicals, using high heat and handling your hair roughly your hair porosity can change to high. However, most people with high porosity hair are just born that way.

Managing high porosity hair can be time consuming. It is important to use minimal heat, air drying is your best option. Deep conditioning your hair often and rinsing out your hair with cool water will help seal your cuticles and prevent frizz. Make sure to detangle with a wide tooth comb (or your fingers) to limit breakage. PROTEIN IS YOUR FRIEND.

Along with moisture protein also leaves your hair cuticles easily. Don’t overload on protein, but definitely add it into your hair routine and do treatments as often as you think you need to. Lastly, it is important to use thicker products. Products that say “butter” or “pomade” are great. These thicker products will add tons of moisture. Also, don’t be afraid to add in more than one leave in conditioner. How you moisturize your hair is totally up to you!

I hope this post helped you understand your natural hair a little more. Leave your questions and feedback below!