(Last Updated On: June 4, 2018)

Hair porosity is the capability of your hair to absorb and retain moisture. As you may have noticed, your hair may sometimes be dry and in other instances relatively more moisturized. This is albeit, without change to your hair care regimen. This is brought about by your hair porosity.

You may be wondering: what is hair porosity? Why do you have to care? If I were to tell you, you have everything to care about hair porosity. It is very important that you know it. Why this attached importance with knowing your hair porosity?

To take good care of your hair, you need to know its capability in holding and retaining moisture. This will guide you on the hair products to use. Besides, it will also help you in deciding which hair processing methods are ideal for your hair porosity type. In a nutshell, you have to know your hair porosity if you have to keep it healthy.

Are you now convinced of the importance of knowing your hair porosity? Great, I will now let you into a little more secret. Keep reading.

Easy tests for your hair porosity test

There are various types of hair porosity tests. Do not be bothered with the number. The methods actually complement each other to give you accurate results. For your guarantee, you can try more than one method to test you hair porosity. It is recommendable you try them all and compare the results. After all, many tests will be better than one and they are easy to perform.

The float/sink test

This is the most common used method on hair porosity test. It is the easiest and done at home.


  • Take a glass or a bowl and fill it with water. Use water at room temperature so as not to alter the natural condition of the test specimen
  • Get a few strands of your hair and drop them on the water. Before plucking the strands, ensure that your hair is clean and free from any other impurities such as oil.
  • Observe keenly the behaviour of the hair strands. You will have to wait for about 2-4 minutes before you get conclusive results.

Explaining the results

What happens to your hair strands once in the water is what tells your hair porosity. There are three results you may expect. Here is the elaboration on whatever result you may get:

  • If after 4 minutes the hair strands are still floating then yours is a low porosity hair. Water was never absorbed at all and the strands remain floating.
  • If the strands undergo slow sinking your hair is of medium porosity. Your hair was able to gradually absorb moisture and hence sank at last
  • If the strands sink immediately you place them on the water, your hair has high porosity. It absorbs water very fast and hence cannot float even for an instance.

Slide hair porosity test

This test is only for those who have long hair strands. It is not effective for people with extremely short hair.


  • Grab one piece of your hair strand or lock from the far end away from the scale
  • Run your finger through it till you reach the scalp
  • While doing so, ensure you take note of the easiness or difficult in passing your finger through

Explaining the results

Just like the first test, you are expecting a set of three different results. Here is the elaboration of each set of results:

  • If the running of your finger through the hair is smooth, your hair type is low porosity. Low porosity hair is flat and thus free to slip your finger through.
  • If your faced some considerable resistance to the movement of your finger, you have a medium porosity hair. Medium porosity hair is partially raised and thus offer less resistance to a passing finger
  • If you felt high resistance when moving your finger through the strand, you have a high porosity hair. High porosity hair is curly and passing a finger through it will feel bumpy.

Spray Bottle Test:

This is third hair porosity test and it is as easy as the other two.


  • Separate a small section of your hair from the rest
  • Sprinkle that small section with a little water from a bottle just enough to make it misty

Explaining the results:

As in the other tests, you are expecting a three set of results. Here is the elaboration on what to make on each set:

  • If the moisture is not absorbed into your hair, you have low porosity hair. The hair cuticles are closed and do not absorb the moisture.
  • If the moisture is gradually absorbed into your hair, you have medium hair porosity. The cuticles are open so as to just absorb and retain adequate moisture.
  • If the moisture is absorbed instantly, you have high porosity hair. The cuticles have large gaps which absorb the moisture at a very fast rate.

Quick Tips to take care of your hair type

Now that you know your hair porosity, won’t you want to know how best to take care of it? Here are the best tips for you.

Low porosity hair

  • Heating treatment is recommended. It opens up the closed cuticles.
  • Only use light hair products. Grape seed and argan oils are good for you
  • Avoid any build ups by washing your hair with apple cider vinegar or clay.

Medium porosity hair

For this one, you don’t have to worry. It is healthy so keep doing what you have been doing in the past.
High porosity hair

After your test, you hair porosity will fall into any of the 3 types viz. low porosity, medium porosity and high porosity. What is important now is to know how exactly to take care of your hair and keep it healthy. Here are quick tips for your hair type:

  • Do egg washes but do not overdo them
  • Heavy products like creams and coconut oil are good, use them daily
  • Intense hair processing helps repair and restore the damaged cuticles

Bingo! Now you not only know how to test your hair porosity but also you know your hair porosity type. Besides, there are easy-to-do tips on how to keep your healthy whatever type it is. Take control of your hair. It always starts with hair porosity.