Caring for hair with a low porosity level
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After taking the porosity test, you must have discovered that your hair has a low porosity level, i.e. your hair does not allow moisture in, and does not allow moisture out. But before I jump into means of caring for low porosity hair, here are some things that one should know about low porosity hair:
- Low porosity hair usually takes a long time to dry.
- Water usually beads up on the hair.
- The cuticles of low porosity hair are closed.
- Products usually sit on the hair.
- Low porosity hair is resistant to moisture.
- The hair does not absorb hair coloring or treatments easily.
Due to the specific traits of hair with a low porosity level, it deserves to be treated differently (routines, products) than the others. Here are some guidelines in caring for low porosity hair:
1. Limit Your Use of Leave in Conditioners:
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Traditional leave-in conditioners are usually formulated with proteins to help strengthen the hair cuticle, but low porosity hair is usually protein sensitive and does not require too much protein as your hair might become stiff from protein overload. This can be tricky as many products do contain protein without necessarily being a protein based treatment. Go for moisture based/ moisture replenishing/balancing products instead of protein products that will have your hair feeling very dry and straw like.
2. Do Not Moisturize Hair When Wet:
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Applying moisturizers to soaking wet hair is not as effective as doing so to damp hair. This is because as the hair dries, water droplets on and in the strand have evaporated a bit leaving room for your moisturizer to penetrate. You do not want to wait until your hair is completely dry; because the cuticles would have laid flat again. Hence, apply these products when your hair is damp.
3. Deep Condition Hair With Heat:
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Deep conditioning is truly a must for low porosity hair. It is a crucial way of getting moisture to penetrate the hair. Holding onto moisture is not the issue but getting it in is. Adding heat will help open the cortex and make it easier for moisture to enter. Even if you cannot sit under a dryer, you can steam your hair while deep conditioning. Also warming up your deep conditioner will help the process as well. When you are done you can rinse with cool water to seal in the moisture that your hair has taken in.
4. Cover Your Hair To Seal In Moisture:
The use of a cap, shower cap, turban, beanie or scarf to cover hair after moisturizing can be an effective method of sealing in moisture.
5. Make Use of Lighter Products and Oils:
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You want to focus on using products that list their first ingredient as water. If the first ingredient isn’t water chances are it is not the best moisturizer for you to be using. You also want to focus on products that contain ingredients like aloe vera and honey. Avoid using products labeled as butters/puddings and the heavy oils such as coconut oil, avocado oil, and olive oil because they will be too thick and lay on top of the hair instead of being absorbed into your strands. This is because low porosity hair struggles to allow moisture in. The use of these products causes your hair to feel heavy, lifeless, and look greasy. This will also clog your scalp which will affect the growth and health of your hair. Lighter oils like grapeseed, almond oil, and babassu oil should be used instead.
The guidelines listed above, once followed, would help you to treat your hair in the best way possible! You would be giving your hair what it needs and what it loves, and your hair has no other option but to repay you back with that jaw-dropping length!