Can porosity change over time?

I am still trying to figure out my own porosity. I have sensitivities to so many ingredients; glycerin, protein, polyquats, some oils. I decided to do a float test again last night and the darn hairs sank right to the bottom.

The funny thing is, last summer, I did the same test and the hairs did not sink. They floated, even overnight. I do not color, I avoid 'cones and sulfates, and I have really not changed anything major with my routine. Am I correct in thinking that the reason I have so many ingredient sensitivities is because I am a closet porous-head and have never realized it?

Also, is the float test the only measurement of porosity? I have taken several strands of hair and run it between my finger and thumb, in both directions and it feels perfectly smooth. It doesn't squeak, my fingers don't catch or detect any roughness. Is that a porosity check or a texture thing?
Have you tried the running your fingers backward up a strand test?

My sinks right after coloring, but I can get it to float again with my routine.

But, that being said, I still consider my hair to be porous (whether slight or highly is beyond me)since I can feel kinks and stuff run I run my fingers up it.

My routine is pretty close to what the coarse/porous routine is on Struttswife's ebook. If you haven't goten that yet, it's a good buy!

Do you have a summer dew point limit with humectants? Although anyone can get that, porous heads are more prone to it than non porous.
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.
I'm in the same boat. I don't color or do any chemical processes in my hair, don't use sulfates and rarely diffuse but still have very porous hair. Plus my hair is sensitive to a lot of ingredients. Humectants esp glycerin are a nightmare for me as soon as the dew points start climbing.
Vinegar rinses definitely help and the very occasional protein treatment although I'm also protein sensitive so I have to be careful not to overdo it.
3b/c fine, thick, porous, protein sensitive
Modified CG, CJ Rehab, JCWDT, KCKT, VO5 Chamomile Tea Therapy, CJDF, HEBE Gel/Mousse, Bioinfusion Rosemary Mint shampoo, occasional protein

Experimenting with BRHG

"If you want the rainbow, you've gotta put up with the rain"
Have you tried the running your fingers backward up a strand test?

My sinks right after coloring, but I can get it to float again with my routine.

But, that being said, I still consider my hair to be porous (whether slight or highly is beyond me)since I can feel kinks and stuff run I run my fingers up it.

My routine is pretty close to what the coarse/porous routine is on Struttswife's ebook. If you haven't goten that yet, it's a good buy!

Do you have a summer dew point limit with humectants? Although anyone can get that, porous heads are more prone to it than non porous.
Originally Posted by redcelticcurls
Yes, I have done that test. I have run my fingers downward, from root to tip, and also upward, tip to root. I feel no bumps, no catches, no roughness whatsoever. It feels smooth and strong and uniform. Is that a test for porosity as well, or just for coarseness? Or are those the same things?? Gah, I feel like such a newb in even asking these questions....

I was hoping you would reply to this thread, as I really thought you and I were hair twins. We seem to have the same sensitivities and enjoy the same basic routine. Maybe I shouldn't be straying from KCCC. I love the way my hair looks with that, I just get tired of the long drying times and the KCKT is not moisturizing enough for me, especially in the winter.

So, when you say a dew point limit for humectants, do you mean on the higher end? I absolutely must cut out all humectants when the dews go below 40. For the last week or so, the dews have been in the 60 to 70 range, so I figured some humectants would be OK. This morning I used the CJ Curl Assurance Leave-in and the FX Curl Booster Fixative Gel. By this afternoon, my hair had expanded in volume and felt fairly dry.

I do intend to buy Struttswife's ebook. It sounds like a winner!

I'm in the same boat. I don't color or do any chemical processes in my hair, don't use sulfates and rarely diffuse but still have very porous hair. Plus my hair is sensitive to a lot of ingredients. Humectants esp glycerin are a nightmare for me as soon as the dew points start climbing.
Vinegar rinses definitely help and the very occasional protein treatment although I'm also protein sensitive so I have to be careful not to overdo it.
Originally Posted by Magoo
I decided to redo my hair after your tip about an acv rinse. I haven't done one of those in ages. My hair is drying right now, so we'll see how it goes. I did go back to using KBB SS as a leave-in topped with the FX Curl Booster Fixative Gel. Keeping my fingers crossed.

I have always avoided protein, especially wheat protein. I guess if I am truly porous, some protein is recommended. What do you use? I picked up some Aubrey Organics GPB condish. Would that work?
I absolutely must cut out all humectants when the dews go below 40. For the last week or so, the dews have been in the 60 to 70 range, so I figured some humectants would be OK. This morning I used the CJ Curl Assurance Leave-in and the FX Curl Booster Fixative Gel. By this afternoon, my hair had expanded in volume and felt fairly dry.
I decided to redo my hair after your tip about an acv rinse. I haven't done one of those in ages. My hair is drying right now, so we'll see how it goes. I did go back to using KBB SS as a leave-in topped with the FX Curl Booster Fixative Gel. Keeping my fingers crossed.

I have always avoided protein, especially wheat protein. I guess if I am truly porous, some protein is recommended. What do you use? I picked up some Aubrey Organics GPB condish. Would that work?
Originally Posted by misspam

My hair seems to tolerate keratin protein but only once every week or 2. I actually realized this after RCC had posted a while ago about revisiting protein after having avoided it for quite a while. I know RCC's got very finicky protein sensitive hair too so her posts are always helpful to me.
I use the Sally's GVP of Joico protein tx. It does have mineral oil in it though which for my hair is a bit of a pain to rinse out so I'm trying to look for another alternative. I don't leave it in for more than 5 minutes and I always follow with a moisturizing deep treatment.
The Curls FX gel did not work for me at all. I think it's got propylene glycol high up on the ingred list which I think is a humectant too. I got instant poof.
3b/c fine, thick, porous, protein sensitive
Modified CG, CJ Rehab, JCWDT, KCKT, VO5 Chamomile Tea Therapy, CJDF, HEBE Gel/Mousse, Bioinfusion Rosemary Mint shampoo, occasional protein

Experimenting with BRHG

"If you want the rainbow, you've gotta put up with the rain"
I hear ya, MissP

I was CONVINCED that I was high porosity for the longest time because of how well my hair takes colour. But the float tests were all over the place. One day, it would all float, the next day all sink and another day half float, half sink. I can`t do the rub test because my hairs too fine to be able to feel a difference.

I decided based on my hair`s fickleness that I must actually be medium porosity. My texture gives me an adversion to too much moisture but other than moisture I seem to be able to use any other ingredient going which makes me middle of the road or maybe even slightly low.

Protein sensitivity could be more about your hair texture - can`t remember which you are but coarse hair doesn`t like more protein and I think it does better with butters than oils.

Sorry I know I`m no help at all. Just know that misery loves company.
Current Products: CJ Products: CF, DF, CT, SG, AFG, CIAB AND CK is back!
Current Experiment: S&C by D

Curl Fix and Daily Fix are my HGs


Sulphate and cone free since July 2007

wavy/curly fine texture/medium porosity/medium-low density

http://public.fotki.com/whatsercurl/

PW: wavycurly

Seek not to change the world. Rather seek to change your mind about the world.
I have always avoided protein, especially wheat protein. I guess if I am truly porous, some protein is recommended. What do you use? I picked up some Aubrey Organics GPB condish. Would that work?
This is a coarse texture trait not a porous trait misspam. So if you're med texture maybe your hair is wanting some protein. The AO GPB is a good start to test out some Protein. Then you can look here to refresh your memory about how to spot protein. Hydrolyzed Wheat is good to avoid in any case. question about protein
Discovered CG 2007

2C Fia BSL/Thick/Med-Coarse/Low(crown)-Normal Porosity Protein and Oil Sensitive

Link-Spritz & Condish Washing

I'm aCurlJunkieJunky

My hair LOVES Coconut DESPISES Soap Bars


CJRehab or H&B Fix, Deva NO POO, EO Rose & Cham POO & Condish, CJ CurlFix, CJ Pattern Pusha, CJ CIAB, SS FHG, KCCC, BRHG, AG Mousse Gel, ACV Rinses,Shikakai Conditioning Hair Rinse.
Misspam, are you coarse or medium. SInce your're routine is so close to mine, I'm just going to guess that you probably are not fine haired.

By theory, porous hair can use protein, especially if it's caused by somethng like chemical or heat damage. But, coarse hair often dislikes protein. Finding a combo that works with both coares and porous hair can be a PITA. They seem to need opposite things sometimes. I do love the ACV rinses for helping to calm my cuticle. As Magoo said, I like keratin now and again, I use it about every 2 weeks, and less so in the witner. I do the ACV rinses once every 7-10 days, which is more often than recommended, but it's what my hair likes.

My next big project, now that I am getting paychecks again, is to test these porosity control conditioners against my ACV rinse to see how they compare. I'm a bit leery because the main one I see has propylene glycol as the first ingredient, and that guar stuff that some find to be drying, but I am really curious.

Since you hate wheat, you might want to play with something like the GVP that I use, Nexus Emergencee, AOs Island Naturals or GPB. One of those may help you if you need a protein hit. I mainly use the stretch test to determine when I need a protein hit, and I hit it when my hair gets too stretchy. Also, sometimes I notice a frizzy undefined canopy that I cannot explain otherwise, which responds to protein if adding moisture does not work. I only get my protein in those occasional hits. My hair cannot tolerate daily use at all.

Interestingly my sytlist calls my hair medium/medium while I call it medium/coarse and porous, though I can't tell how porous. It just responds better to a coarse porous routine with the occasional protein hit.

The dry poofiness with humectants and high dewpoints is pretty common with porous hair, but, it can also happen to normal porosity too sometimes. glycerin intolerance (or having to at least reduce the amounts of it)in low dewpoints seemed to run across the board last winter from what I recall.

All you can do really is some more trial and error. Try a little protein and see what it does.

Magoo, you might like the Emergencee. SOme have compared it to the Joico/GVP as performing in a similar manner. It uses collagen instead of keratin. I don't know if it's too much propylene glycol for you, or if that would be OK for a one shot deal. I never bothered to try it because the mineral oil in the GVP doesn't bother me. I would not know it was there if I didn't read it on the ingredient list.


Polyacrylamidomethylpropane Sulfonic Acid, Water (Aqua), Collagen Amino Acids, Hydrolyzed Elastin, Propylene Glycol, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Dmdm Hydantoin, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Methylparaben
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.
RCC, have you had problems with mineral oil in other products? I've been wavering about trying the GVP kpak because of the mineral oil; I think I've had problems from mineral oil in other stuff. Do you happen to know if Sally's has an Emergencee knockoff, by the way?

My new stylist told me I have medium/medium hair -- but I am sure that my dry, wayward canopy is more porous and possibly coarser than the rest of my hair. I am protein sensitive to some degree but I want to try a protein treatment to see if that helps. Do you ever try things like DTs with egg and/or protein, or do those proteins affect you badly as well? I think I do better with that than I do with Suave coconut or other products with wheat or soy.

PS: I hope your iritis is all better now.
2-something? Coarse, medium underneath. Mid-back. On CG since 5/9/07.
Washing COs: VO5 Blackberry, Suave Cherry
Detangle and leave-in: Sally's GVP Conditioning Balm -- I found my HG CO!
Seal with camellia oil
Leave-in: Aura cherry almond
Gels: Homemade FSG, Eco-styler
Plus: SOTC or smooth with camellia oil, JC Nourish & Shine
Homemade food-based DTs
RC color
I hear ya, MissP

I was CONVINCED that I was high porosity for the longest time because of how well my hair takes colour. But the float tests were all over the place. One day, it would all float, the next day all sink and another day half float, half sink. I can`t do the rub test because my hairs too fine to be able to feel a difference.

I decided based on my hair`s fickleness that I must actually be medium porosity. My texture gives me an adversion to too much moisture but other than moisture I seem to be able to use any other ingredient going which makes me middle of the road or maybe even slightly low.

Protein sensitivity could be more about your hair texture - can`t remember which you are but coarse hair doesn`t like more protein and I think it does better with butters than oils.

Sorry I know I`m no help at all. Just know that misery loves company.
Originally Posted by whatsercurl
Okay, this is what's baffling to me. I have read the uber-long texture, porosity madness thread as well as Tiffany's blog trying, again, in an attempt to finally nail down my hair properties. But, I keep getting stuck on the word 'coarse'. I thought it described an individual hair's thickness. But then I read on Tiffany's blog about coarseness being directly related to porosity. Am I right in thinking that highly porous hair will feel bumpy when you do the strand test, or am I confusing my terms??

This is what I can tell so far:

Individual hairs feel medium to coarse.
Elasticity is low.
Density is medium.

Porosity is the one characteristic I am struggling with. First, is the float test one of the tests for porosity? If so, then last night's test (sinking hair) indicates high porosity. If the other test for porosity is running your finger and thumb both up and down an individual strand of hair, then my strands feel smooth and strong. No bumps or lumps. Those results sound contradictory, to say the least. I don't know if I have anything else to use to determine my porosity. I have never colored, and besides a couple of perms in my teens, I don't know how readily my hair accepts chemical treatments.

You are a help simply by indulging my posts, which make me sound as if I just fell off the turnip truck! LOL I feel as if my hair is changing quite rapidly these days and I would like to figure out what is going on.

I'm also wondering if some of these rapid changes could be due to wildly fluctuating hormones and the grey hairs coming in at an accelerated rate lately.
I have always avoided protein, especially wheat protein. I guess if I am truly porous, some protein is recommended. What do you use? I picked up some Aubrey Organics GPB condish. Would that work?
This is a coarse texture trait not a porous trait misspam. So if you're med texture maybe your hair is wanting some protein. The AO GPB is a good start to test out some Protein. Then you can look here to refresh your memory about how to spot protein. Hydrolyzed Wheat is good to avoid in any case. question about protein
Originally Posted by DEL2C
Thanks, DEL. When I first started the CG routine, I quickly found out that wheat proteins make my hair like straw. I avoid those, but silk and soy proteins I can take every now and then, especially in a rinse out condish. I guess that indicates I have more of a medium texture. Maybe I am confusing texture and porosity. I think I am going to give the AO GPB a try tomorrow, without changing anything else in my routine and see what happens.
Misspam, are you coarse or medium. SInce your're routine is so close to mine, I'm just going to guess that you probably are not fine haired.

By theory, porous hair can use protein, especially if it's caused by somethng like chemical or heat damage. But, coarse hair often dislikes protein. Finding a combo that works with both coares and porous hair can be a PITA. They seem to need opposite things sometimes. I do love the ACV rinses for helping to calm my cuticle. As Magoo said, I like keratin now and again, I use it about every 2 weeks, and less so in the witner. I do the ACV rinses once every 7-10 days, which is more often than recommended, but it's what my hair likes.

My next big project, now that I am getting paychecks again, is to test these porosity control conditioners against my ACV rinse to see how they compare. I'm a bit leery because the main one I see has propylene glycol as the first ingredient, and that guar stuff that some find to be drying, but I am really curious.

Since you hate wheat, you might want to play with something like the GVP that I use, Nexus Emergencee, AOs Island Naturals or GPB. One of those may help you if you need a protein hit. I mainly use the stretch test to determine when I need a protein hit, and I hit it when my hair gets too stretchy. Also, sometimes I notice a frizzy undefined canopy that I cannot explain otherwise, which responds to protein if adding moisture does not work. I only get my protein in those occasional hits. My hair cannot tolerate daily use at all.

Interestingly my sytlist calls my hair medium/medium while I call it medium/coarse and porous, though I can't tell how porous. It just responds better to a coarse porous routine with the occasional protein hit.

The dry poofiness with humectants and high dewpoints is pretty common with porous hair, but, it can also happen to normal porosity too sometimes. glycerin intolerance (or having to at least reduce the amounts of it)in low dewpoints seemed to run across the board last winter from what I recall.

All you can do really is some more trial and error. Try a little protein and see what it does.

Magoo, you might like the Emergencee. SOme have compared it to the Joico/GVP as performing in a similar manner. It uses collagen instead of keratin. I don't know if it's too much propylene glycol for you, or if that would be OK for a one shot deal. I never bothered to try it because the mineral oil in the GVP doesn't bother me. I would not know it was there if I didn't read it on the ingredient list.


Polyacrylamidomethylpropane Sulfonic Acid, Water (Aqua), Collagen Amino Acids, Hydrolyzed Elastin, Propylene Glycol, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Dmdm Hydantoin, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Methylparaben
Originally Posted by redcelticcurls

As always RCC, your posts are quite informative and helpful. Thanks very much for your response.

I think I am leaning more towards myself being a medium/coarse texture and a medium porosity, although I'm still a bit shaky on the porosity. I think it fluctuates and it's almost driving me to drink trying to figure this out. I crave the simplest of routines, yet I find myself trying out more and different products. It's getting frustrating.

Since you still seem to be my hair twin, I will follow your advice and try a little protein and make sure to use an acv rinse more often.

Thanks a bunch!
Yeah, porosity is hard. I swear, one of these days I am just going to have to visit Tiffany! And, hey, you're not out of the way for the drive if I want to go on 95, lol.

I don't have a big strand like Asian hair can. But, even as a kids protein sucked. I remember my well-meaning mother trying matonnaise deep treatments to help my hair that was dry even then. Those things made my hair feel even worse, and I though I was just a defromed kid with deformed hair.

So, I just treat my hair as coarse because it acts coarse. But, I also treat is as porous vecause that seems towork the best even if i can't quite tell what that is.

I have wondered if medium textured hair can have a medulla, as the medulla seems to play a protein role.

For me, that just means no daily protein with an occasional light protein treatment here and there. It also means ACV rinses, and they have been helpful. I even get a lot less color fade since I have been using them regularly. That is saying something for red hair dye.

You could play with protein and ACV to see what it does. The less porous you are , especially with your texture, it may be that the less protein you need. You might find a good time frame of when to get some protein. As much as I love the GVP, I know not everyone will due to the mineral oil.
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.
RozettaStone, thank you for the well wishes. It's getting there, but it can go slowly. I still have at least 5 more weeks on the prednisone, so it will be awhile. I'm sort of just used to having one fully functional at this point, and at least it doesn't hurt now. The only problem is close up stuff becase the depth perception is still off. I had to put a button back on a shirt the other day and it took me forever to thread the darm needle, lol.

I just wear a patch when I am on the computer to keep the glare off of the affeced eye.
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.
RCC, glad you are healing, but sorry it's such a slow process. Nifty eye patch, though!

As for the close work/needle-threading woes: think of this as practice for the joys of middle age. It can take me forever to thread a needle now using both eyes. Hint: hold the needle and thread over a contrasting background. So if it's white thread, have a darker fabric on your lap and look at it and the needle against that. It helps when you don't have reading glasses handy!
2-something? Coarse, medium underneath. Mid-back. On CG since 5/9/07.
Washing COs: VO5 Blackberry, Suave Cherry
Detangle and leave-in: Sally's GVP Conditioning Balm -- I found my HG CO!
Seal with camellia oil
Leave-in: Aura cherry almond
Gels: Homemade FSG, Eco-styler
Plus: SOTC or smooth with camellia oil, JC Nourish & Shine
Homemade food-based DTs
RC color
RCC, glad you are healing, but sorry it's such a slow process. Nifty eye patch, though!

As for the close work/needle-threading woes: think of this as practice for the joys of middle age. It can take me forever to thread a needle now using both eyes. Hint: hold the needle and thread over a contrasting background. So if it's white thread, have a darker fabric on your lap and look at it and the needle against that. It helps when you don't have reading glasses handy!
Originally Posted by RozettaStone
Lol, I turn 40 in September, so maybe I had just better start practicing now then. Thanks for the tip!
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.
RCC- I am excited to hear that you are going to try porosity control condishes. I thought about it a while back but didn't do it-- couldn't find anyone on here that had tried them and didn't want to be a guinea pig (yet) since I'm still really trying to find out exactly what works with my hair.

I am med/coarse and porous so it's a constant challenge to balance proteins (I use them rarely) oils and glycerin I am sensitive to (and now humectants with the high dews) but I am learning slowly.

Looking forward to your reports on those products!
RCC- I am excited to hear that you are going to try porosity control condishes. I thought about it a while back but didn't do it-- couldn't find anyone on here that had tried them and didn't want to be a guinea pig (yet) since I'm still really trying to find out exactly what works with my hair.

I am med/coarse and porous so it's a constant challenge to balance proteins (I use them rarely) oils and glycerin I am sensitive to (and now humectants with the high dews) but I am learning slowly.

Looking forward to your reports on those products!
Originally Posted by hmixon
Lol, I did some searching too. There were bits here and there, but not enough of what I was looking for. Most related to pre-color use, which makes sense. But, I want to use it the same way I use ACV rinses to see if one or the other is better.

I picked up a sample size of the Roux Porosity Control at Sallys for about 2 bucks, so this will even be cheap right now. If the sample works, then I'll get a full sized one to try. I'd like to test the Nexus one too since the ingredients lists look different enough.

Now I just need to get off of my lazy butt and go try it out.

It may be that ACV rinses do just as well, which would be nice since that is cheap. I've been quite happy with them so far. But, I want to know and I can't find enough out there, so I may as well try it.

I think the coarse porous combo can be difficult if one doesn't know how to deal with it. I now better understand why it took me a year to find a workable routine.
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.

Last edited by redcelticcurls; 05-31-2009 at 02:58 PM.
RCC - I want to thank you for all your help in this thread. Today, I used the AO GPB and don't seem to have suffered any ill effects at all. If anything, my hair is curlier and not as much canopy frizz. I think I will continue using this once a week and see how things go. Maybe protein is not so bad after all, although I will still be avoiding wheat protein since I do get an immediate dry straw reaction from that.

Would you mind expanding on your medulla point in a previous point and how that plays a role in the protein issue?
RCC - I want to thank you for all your help in this thread. Today, I used the AO GPB and don't seem to have suffered any ill effects at all. If anything, my hair is curlier and not as much canopy frizz. I think I will continue using this once a week and see how things go. Maybe protein is not so bad after all, although I will still be avoiding wheat protein since I do get an immediate dry straw reaction from that.

Would you mind expanding on your medulla point in a previous point and how that plays a role in the protein issue?
Originally Posted by misspam
Coarser hair has a medulla, which is the centermost layer of hair. Finer hair does not; its innermost layer is the cortex. That much I remember from here and from reading around googling.

Tiffany's ebook talks about it a bit more. But, I don't have copy/paste permission from it, and I can't google up a better explanation.

It does seem that those who have a medulla can't handle as much protein as those without one.

I'm glad that the GPB worked for you. I like protein about every other week, any more than that is the devil, lol. I too notice curlier curls and less canopy frizz after a needed treatment. As you know, the hard part is finding appropriate protein that doesn't cause straw hair on the first dose!

ETA: My thinking goes something like this. If you have a medulla, the inner part of you hair structure dictates a dislike of protein. But, if you are porous, your cuticle might be helped with some. But, a hair is only so thick; what affects the outside could affect the inside. Finding something that keeps both parts happy is the trick.

ETA again
Misspam, here is a link with hair anatomy. It helps to have a little bit of science voacb to read it though. Although the cuticle is the outer layer, the hair in the drawings is still way down in the follicle, so everything looks sort of internal.
Kiva! Microfinance works.

Med/Coarse, porous curly.

Last edited by redcelticcurls; 05-31-2009 at 04:34 PM.

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