Hair Porosity Breakdown + Do I Have High Or Low Porosity Hair ~ My Results!

Calling All Naturals w/ Curls, Coils & Kinks

So I have been hearing off and on about a natural’s porosity level being vital since my transition phase. A few YouTube videos later and Shea Moisture’s new High and Low Porosity Level Collections that just dropped later and now this subject has captured my attention. It’s kind of funny how one minute something may not seem that important to you and a few years later combined with unforeseen insight and all of a sudden boom…the information of the season! Well, I have been inspired to test out my own porosity level and dive further into this unfamiliar subject for me. I will take you through my lens of what I found and how it may help elevate me further in my natural hair journey. Do I have any takers?

Hair Porosity: What does this mean?

  • Porosity refers how well your hair is able to absorb and hold moisture.

There are several methods out there to test your porosity level however I chose to use the Float Test. Do you want details? See below 

The Float Test: How do you administer the test?

  • Fill a glass or bowl with room temperature water
  • Take a couple of strands of your clean hair and put them in the water. Clean hair is important. If you have oils and product in your hair; it could alter your results.
  • Watch it for 5 minutes. If your hair sinks immediately, you have high porosity. If your hair floats you have low porosity. Although I am sure there are exceptions to every rule.



Hair Porosity Types: Which one are you? 

  • HIGH POROSITY: High Porosity hair has gaps and holes in the cuticle allowing too much moisture into your hair leaving it prone to frizz and tangling with humid weather conditions. If you live an active lifestyle such as: swimming or even bathing/shampooing can create more damage due to the amount of moisture high porous hair can absorb. Also it’s important to notate that High Porosity hair can be a result of damage from chemical processing, rough treatment or environmental damage. Make sense?


  • Maintenance
  • Use products that have anti-humectants in climates with high heat and humidity. Humectants draw in moisture into that hair.
  • High Porosity hair can also lose moisture easily so use: leave in conditioners, moisturizers and sealers.



  • MEDIUM POROSITY: The type that usually requires the least amount of maintenance. The cuticle layer is looser allowing just the right amount of moisture to enter while preventing too much from escaping. Hair with medium porosity tends to hold styles well. Is this you?


  • Maintenance: ↓
  • Deep condition w/ protein conditioners often




  • LOW POROSITY: Low Porosity hair has tightly bound cuticle layer with overlapping scales that lay flat. This type of porosity is considered to be healthy and very shiny. Low porosity hair repels moisture when you try to wet it and is hard to process since it resists penetration of chemicals. This type is prone to build up from protein rich conditioners and can leave it straw like.


  • Maintenance: ↓
  • Use protein free daily conditioners
  • Use conditioners with humectants like honey & glycerin
  • Stick to moisturizers rich in emollients like shea butter and coconut oil
  • This type of porosity loves products with humectants which will attract and hold that moisture in.



My Results: → The Float Test: Well, I tried this test 2 different ways  for kicks and giggles I suppose. lol!

  • Results w/ some product on my hair = Low Porosity!! My hair did NOT move at all and stayed at the top of my glass just floating and enjoying itself.
  • Results w/ freshly washed hair = Low Porosity again!! My hair performed the same results with and without product.



Start of the Float Test


FINAL THOUGHTS: Overall I was not shocked at all with my results. As I began reading the different characteristics of the different porosity levels my hair automatically sounded like Low Porosity. My hair loves glycerin and rich emollients! For all I know I could be Medium Porosity but according to this particular test results I am definitely knocking on the Low Porosity door. I did find it fascinating and vital information to know especially going forward with knowing how to properly take care of my natural tresses. As we all navigate through our natural hair journeys it’s always inspiring to learn together to help better ourselves with the proper knowledge so our results will reflect what we have learned. I don’t know if these results will explain every single natural’s hair type or if everyone will fall into just one category but I love learning and taking all points into consideration. By no means am I an natural hair expert or even licensed however that shouldn’t stop us from learning all we can so that YOU will be the best expert with YOUR hair! Remember you don’t have to be licensed or have a hair degree to know what works best for you and your curls, coils and kinks. Do you research, experiment some and work it! So… have you tried the Float Test? – What were your results? If not, will you try?  Do you think I should try Shea Moisture’s Low Porosity line? Until next time ~ Chow! ♥


After results of the Float Test


Today’s Natural Hair Lingo

  • CAN ⇒ Calling All Naturals
  • LOC Method ⇒ Liquid/or Leave In – Oil  ~ Cream = 3 Step process for moisturizing natural hair

Weekly Power Thought: As we all navigate through our natural hair journeys it’s always inspiring to learn together to help better ourselves with the proper knowledge so our results will reflect what we have learned.

Weekly Natural Hair Care Savings


A.Adams ~ Subscribe:Learn:Grow:Share


One thought on “Hair Porosity Breakdown + Do I Have High Or Low Porosity Hair ~ My Results!

  1. Latoya says:

    I think my hair is low porosity but I will try the test to confirm. I actually tried the float test once and my hair just sat on top of the water. Yes I think you should try Shea Moisture’s low porosity products!!


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