Everything You Need to Know About High-Porosity Hair


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If your hair feels dry, brittle, and prone to breakage, it could be due to a lack of moisture. Additionally, it’s important to understand the porosity, be it low or high, of your hair. If your hair is highly porous, that means the moisture you add to your hair will quickly pass through, not locking in place due to the raised cuticles on the hair shaft. That said, it’s important to pay attention to how your hair absorbs different products to determine the level of porosity and how to properly moisturize your hair. 

To help figure out whether you have high porosity hair or not, below, Dove partner and celebrity hairstylist  Lacy Redway breaks down everything you need to know. 

What is high porosity hair?

“High porosity strands have raised cuticles, which can cause the overall look and feel to be prone to dryness and frizz,” Lacy Redway, Dove partner & celebrity hairstylist, tells ESSENCE. “High-porosity hair tends to be dryer, frizzier, and does not maintain moisture because the cuticles are laying in various directions.”

What can I expect?

Adding moisture to high porosity hair can be challenging and requires extra care to keep it hydrated. According to Redway, hair porosity can be determined by genetics or various factors that have damaged your hair strands, such as excessive heat or chemical treatments like perms or relaxers.

How do I treat it?

Redway recommends clients who have high porosity hair to moisturize their hair daily to prevent it from breaking and causing more damage. “Heavier formulas with more moisturizing ingredients can help maintain a healthy look and feel,” Redway says. She also suggests regular deep conditioning with products that are rich in protein with active peptides. Additionally, try to minimize heat styling, and avoid harsh chemicals and hairstyles. Let’s also consider adding a weekly hair mask to our haircare routine.

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