On one of my #ChristmasGiveaway posts on Instagram, I encouraged my followers to share with me their hair struggles so that we could chit chat on possible solutions. We all have different hair struggles and I believe that a problem shared is a problem half solved. The question that was most rampant was, “Why does my hair lose moisture so fast?” Turns out most of us struggle with moisture retention and ultimately dry hair. So I thought it would be wise to finally address the issue via this blog post that you can always refer to and share with a friend who might be having the same struggle!
In order to ensure that your hair is moisturized and stays that way for a long time, it is important that you find out your hair porosity. Hair porosity basically refers to your hair’s ability to absorb and hold onto the moisture. This is usually determined by how our hair cuticles lay and how they open up. The outer layer of our hair is what we call the cuticles.
How to do a porosity test?
There are many methods but the easiest is:
- Put clean water in a clear glass. The water should be room temperature.
- Ensure your hair is clean. Take a strand or two and put it in the water.
- Watch for 3-5 minutes
If the strand sank immediately to the bottom of the glass, your hair is of high porosity and therefore it absorbs water very fast. Your hair has an open cuticle which allows water to easily be absorbed but unfortunately the moisture easily escapes as well. Your type of hair is prone to frizz as well. You may need to put in a little more work to keep it moisturized. Some tips that will be helpful for you are:
- Use protein treatments as part of your regimen since your hair needs protein to fill in the gaps so invest in products that have protein.
- Ensure you prepoo using your oil and/or using a moisturising conditioner to detangle before your wash session.
- Avoid harsh shampoos that will strip off your natural oils and make your hair even dryer. Sulphate free shampoos are a great pick e.g. Saru Organics , Design Essentials are just examples of brands that have suphate free shampoos.
- Deep condition regularly using both protein based and moisture based treatments.
- Use a hair masque as part of your regimen for that extra boost of strength and moisture. Saru Organics Hair Growth Masque or Haldha Naturals Hydrating Hair Masque are great picks for you.
- Avoid heating tools
- An apple cider vinegar rinse would not only help balance your ph but also help flatten the cuticles and seal in the moisture. Simply mix ACV with water in the ratio 1:3 when doing your final rinse.
- Aloe vera juice is also a product that you can add in your spritz bottle.
- Invest in leave in conditioners for that extra boost of moisture.
- Use heavier oils to seal in moisture, eg. castor, olive oil, avocado oil , shea butter etc
- The LOC method would be ideal for you when moisturising, i.e. use a liquid (water/leave in conditioner), then use oil, then your curling cream.
If your stand remained afloat, you have low porosity hair. Having low porosity hair means that your hair strands have a tightly bound cuticle. It tends to lay flat hence ends up repelling water. This type of hair is prone to have product build up. A few tips go a long way when taking care of low porosity hair:
- Since you are prone to have product build up, use a clarifying shampoo as this will help in opening up the cuticles for optimal deep conditioning. A simple co-wash may not be reliable.
- While doing a deep condition, use heat i.e. hooded dryers to enable certain ingredients adsorb onto the hair shaft. The end result will be that your hair will feel softer and moisturized.
- Leave in conditioners formulated with proteins may not be your best friend. This is why: the proteins will strengthen the hair cuticle which is not entirely a bad thing. However this only tightens the cuticle bond. So its good to use water based moisturizers instead e.g. those that have aloe vera juice, and alternate leave in conditioners with a light weight moisturizer.
- Avoid heavy oils and butters like avocado, castor and olive oil. They are too heavy for you’re type of hair and will only result into build up and ultimately your hair will feel dry. Therefore, it you have to seal the hair after washing, consider light oils such as argan oil, almond oil, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil.
- Don’t moisturize when the hair is completely dry, this means that your cuticles will have laid flat again. So the most opportune moment to add the oils is when the hair is damp.
- Don’t overdo protein treatments. Instead, invest in conditioners with humectants such as honey, glycerin etc. Humectants will attract and hold moisture to your hair.
- Choose lighter, liquid-based products such as hair milks that won’t sit on your hair and leave it oily or greasy since your prone to build up.
MEDIUM POROSITY HAIR
With this type of hair, the cuticle layer is loose and allows just the appropriate amount of moisture in and at the same times prevents too much from being lost. Normal porosity babes are the luckiest because they can rock their styles really well. Regular deep conditioning with protein based conditioners are good for this hair type but remember too much of something is poisonous. Therefore balance the amount of times you do the same.
In conclusion, knowing your hair porosity will help you choose the right products and healthy practices for your hair. Knowing the right products and routine will help you keep it moisturized. So take 5 minutes and do the strand test when your hair is clean so that you can make informed decisions when buying your products. I shared a few products that have been working for my coloured hair and luckily I was able to partner with a few of my favorite brands to gift some of you ladies this Christmas season. I am still running a few giveaways on my Instagram page and some of my Facebook page before the year (2018) ends so let’s be friends here and chit chat some more.
I hope you found this helpful,