Knowing your current hair porosity level can help you choose the right products and hair care methods. Porosity is one of the most important factors because it affects everything else about your hair including thickness, smoothness, and strength. If a favorite hair product suddenly stopped working or your last hair color didn’t hold at all (or held on too well!), a change in porosity may have played a part.
Hair porosity is really simple to test at home with no more than a glass of water. The most accurate test should be done on hair that was washed with a clarifying shampoo and air dried at least 4 hours before the test. Conditioners, oils, and other products can change the porosity level of the hair by coating the hair strands, and we want to determine porosity in a raw state.
With clean and dried raw hair, take a sample of at least three strands, one each from the top, middle, and bottom of your scalp. Place each strand in its own glass of tap water. After 8 minutes, examine the glass and note the sinkage of the hair strands according to the chart.
Most people get roughly the same results from each hair strand. If you hair is very long and has been through a lot of damaging colors or perms, then you may find that sections of your hair are porous and others are not. If the difference is extreme, you may need to use different products on different sections of the hair.