Texture, porosity and elasticity.

Hello,

So, I'm reading over and over that "curl type" is a lot less important that hair type, when determining how to care for your locks.

Is there a page on Naturally Curly that helps us figure out our hair type, similar to the page on curl type? I looked at livecurlylivefree.com, but the factors seem vague. I've also head somesuchstuff about sticking a strand of your hair in a glass of water in order to determine how porous it is. But I've no idea how to..uh..interpret the results.

I apologize if there are a billion threads on the topic!! I've spent hours looking but haven't been able to find them.

In short, there are three questions I'm trying to answer:
  • How does one determine their hair's texture?
  • How does one determine their hair's porosity?
  • How does one determine their hair's elasticity?
Thanks a lot!

-Noelle
I'm curious about the last one.

But I'm fairly sure if your hair gets weighed down easily with conditioners/products or if your hair gets easily greasy, you're a fine haired girl.
If your hair soaks up a ton of moisture and you seem to always be dry, you have more coarse hair.

For porosity, you can take a strand and run it the opposite direction your hair grows- up. If it catches a lot, you have highly porous hair. If it's smooth, you have low-mid porosity.

I'm sure some others can give you way better input on this though.

Oh, and it seems like a lot of fine haired curlies hair can't stand protein... if you're hair has an unexplainable dry/straw like feel no matter how much you condition on the CG routine, I'd recommend using some protein free products.
3A~fine texture
Cleanser: GiovanniTTTT, Deva Low Poo
Condish: Deva One C, GiovanniTTTT, GVP Balm
Styler: Deva ArcANGELL, HESMU, AG Mousse Gel
Want to try: CJ Gellie, Hand Dry Hair Glove, BRHG
I <3 second day hair
Call me a Curltalk Otaku. ~MirCurls
http://public.fotki.com/kellygreen49/
PW curlyhair
Struttswife, aka Tiffany, has a lot of information on her website:

http://livecurlylivefree.blogspot.com/

You should buy her ebook, it will really help you figure these things out. First item in the right hand box.
3a (Corkicelli), highlighted, fine, low porosity
modified CG, since April '07
CG since 3/11/08

SE PA

HGs: Anything Sevi; Curly Kinks Satin Roots, Curlycue ReNew and Coil Jam; homemade FSG and okra gel; soap bars; UFD Curly Magic; Botanical Spirits Jellies, CJ Repair Me, Marie Dean Leave Ins and Curl Creams
Texture is the main thing. I don't know how best to explain it to you if you have already been to livecurlylivefree.com but I'll give it a try.

Coarse hair doesn't "bend" well. It is physically thick. Coarse has nothing to do with how the hair feels, it's about it's thickness. You can definitely feel it if you roll it between two fingers.

Fine hair would be light, airy, billowy, even flyaway. You might not even be able to feel it if you rolled it between two fingers. If it's blonde, you might have a hard time seeing a single strand.

Medium is in between.

Many coarse haired curlies have a hard time using products with protein in them. Their hair can feel brittle, tangled, kind of an all around mess.

Fine to medium curlies however, can benefit from protein.

I don't know if all this helps, but please feel free to ask more questions. I'm sure that somebody on this board can help!
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi

Hair porosity is the amount of damage to the hair shaft. Color, sun, heated appliances, all do damage to hair. It blows holes into the shaft. Too porous equals "weak" hair. Protein can fill the holes and strengthen the hair.

Pull a hair for four different areas of the head. Hold the end of the hair with one hand and with the other hand run two fingers "up" the hair toward the bulb.

If the hair feels "bumpy" or "rough" you have porous hair.

If you the hair feels "smooth" then your probably have low to medium porosity.

If it takes extra processing time for color then you have low porosity. If it takes it quickly but doesn't last long, you probably have high porosity.

If the hair feels smooth but "squeaky" you might need moisture.
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi

I have a lot of time on my hands tonight...

Elasticity is determined by taking a strand of hair and holding it on either end. Pull. Does the hair stretch 30-50% and then pulls itself back to it's original length/shape when released? Then you have great elasticity.

Does it stretch to something less than 30-50% and then snaps? Then you need moisture.

Does it stretch and when released it doesn't pull itself back into it's original length/shape? Then you need protein.

It is not unusual, especially for fine to medium haired curlies to need both moisture and protein.

Remember to test more than just one strand of hair as well. Many of us have different textures and conditions mixed together. Whew! That was long!
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi

I'm curious about the last one.

But I'm fairly sure if your hair gets weighed down easily with conditioners/products or if your hair gets easily greasy, you're a fine haired girl.
If your hair soaks up a ton of moisture and you seem to always be dry, you have more coarse hair.

For porosity, you can take a strand and run it the opposite direction your hair grows- up. If it catches a lot, you have highly porous hair. If it's smooth, you have low-mid porosity.

I'm sure some others can give you way better input on this though.

Oh, and it seems like a lot of fine haired curlies hair can't stand protein... if you're hair has an unexplainable dry/straw like feel no matter how much you condition on the CG routine, I'd recommend using some protein free products.
Originally Posted by kellygreen49
i thought that if you have fine hair your much more likely to like and need protein? thats what iv always read and been told on here and other sites and i have found it to be true as i have fine hair. i think its the coarser the texture the less the hair likes protein.
3B~Fine, porus, and really long
HG's~Plopping and Homemade FSG!! Thank you BB
Proud To Be Egyptian!
"Your head is like a crown on you.
It is as beautiful as Mount Carmel.
Your hair is as smooth as purple silk.
I am captured by your flowing curls."
Song of Solomon 7:5 (NIRV)
I'm curious about the last one.

But I'm fairly sure if your hair gets weighed down easily with conditioners/products or if your hair gets easily greasy, you're a fine haired girl.
If your hair soaks up a ton of moisture and you seem to always be dry, you have more coarse hair.

For porosity, you can take a strand and run it the opposite direction your hair grows- up. If it catches a lot, you have highly porous hair. If it's smooth, you have low-mid porosity.

I'm sure some others can give you way better input on this though.

Oh, and it seems like a lot of fine haired curlies hair can't stand protein... if you're hair has an unexplainable dry/straw like feel no matter how much you condition on the CG routine, I'd recommend using some protein free products.
Originally Posted by kellygreen49
i thought that if you have fine hair your much more likely to like and need protein? thats what iv always read and been told on here and other sites and i have found it to be true as i have fine hair. i think its the coarser the texture the less the hair likes protein.
Originally Posted by egyptiancurls89
That's correct. Coarse hair already contains a lot of protein already (as I stated in my earlier post to the OP).

Last edited by mpgirl; 06-30-2009 at 10:52 PM.
I'm curious about the last one.

But I'm fairly sure if your hair gets weighed down easily with conditioners/products or if your hair gets easily greasy, you're a fine haired girl.
If your hair soaks up a ton of moisture and you seem to always be dry, you have more coarse hair.


For porosity, you can take a strand and run it the opposite direction your hair grows- up. If it catches a lot, you have highly porous hair. If it's smooth, you have low-mid porosity.

I'm sure some others can give you way better input on this though.

Oh, and it seems like a lot of fine haired curlies hair can't stand protein... if you're hair has an unexplainable dry/straw like feel no matter how much you condition on the CG routine, I'd recommend using some protein free products.
Originally Posted by kellygreen49
I'm fine haired but my hair is rarely weighed down by product because my hair is so dense so that isn't always true. If you're losing moisture it is more likely that you have highly porous hair since the hair cannot hold onto it. Moisture just blows out of damaged hair. It can't hold onto it. That's why color doesn't last as long.
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi


Last edited by mpgirl; 06-30-2009 at 10:59 PM.
Thanks so much for all the info!

Mpgril, thanks to your awesome descriptions, I'm pretty sure I have medium, porous hair with..like..no elasticity. It reacts alright to protein (I never know if the protein is helping a lot, but it doesn't weigh it down). I could be wrong about my hair type, and I'll ask a stylist next time I go to get a trim, but this is a muuuuch better starting point!
Thanks so much for all the info!

Mpgril, thanks to your awesome descriptions, I'm pretty sure I have medium, porous hair with..like..no elasticity. It reacts alright to protein (I never know if the protein is helping a lot, but it doesn't weigh it down). I could be wrong about my hair type, and I'll ask a stylist next time I go to get a trim, but this is a muuuuch better starting point!
Originally Posted by nj001
I'm glad it was helpful. One thing I should correct though. For the stretch test the hair should be wet. I just pluck one from the shower drain! If the hair snaps right away it could need both moisture and protein. The hair is weak and dry. You may need to play with the balance for a couple of weeks. When I started using protein I saw some improvements right away, but the consistently good hair days took a bit longer.

Remember, this is all a journey. Be patient with yourself. I started my curly hair journey a year and a half ago. I had successes along the way but it was frustrating. My hair just didn't seem to ever look as good as other's on this board.

Maybe my hair is better, but I think I'm better "about" my hair than I used to be. Someone on this board used to say she was "Zen with her hair..." Don't remember the poster but that is exactly where I am with my hair right now. Balanced hair -- balanced life!
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi

Wow, great information! thanks!
But I don't understand how elasticity is important? I mean, is it just to know if your hair needs more conditioning or protein?
2C, med-coarse, med. dense, normal elasticity, low porosity. Mod CG since 5/30/11
Routine:
Low-Poo: Organix Nourishing Coconut Milk
Co-Wash: Suave Naturals
Tropical Coconut
RO/LI: TRESemme Naturals Nourishing Moisture
Gel: 3/4 Fantasia IC Hair Polisher Gel + 1/4 La Bella Lots of Curls
Spritz: AVG + LI w/water - 2/3 day hair

Treatments:
Conditioning: EVOO *started using on 8/14/11 on dry hair overnight, its looking good!*
Protein: homemade
Love: TTO, plop, pineapple
Hair that has low elasticity can easily break or split and can appear dry and dull. Adding protein to fine hair can build the strength of the hair and prevent further damage. Adding moisture can make the hair shaft more flexible and shiny.

Remember, hair is dead by the time you can see it. You can't "undamage" hair you can only improve the look and feel of it with the right product ingredients until the damaged parts are cut off either all at once or over time.
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi

mpgirl - i got my curl genie back last week and my texture, medium, and porosity, normal, are what i expected. however, i have low elasticity and they said perhaps a conditioner with protein might help.
your description made it a lot clearer. my hair does stretch and stretch..... and for a long time i was avoiding protein. i have been doing occasional repair me treatments, but now i see i need to add just daily products with more protein.
i stopped coloring my hair over two years ago, never flat ironed it, and in the infrequent times i use a dryer, it is with a diffuser and for only a few minutes to give it a helping hand, so i was confused as to how my hair had low elasticity.
when i read your description, it all fell into place. thanks!
now i'll get shopping, hopefully that with just new additions here and there, will complete my product list! (i'm not a pj at heart, prefer to have great hair every day without the mystery!)
[FONT="Arial Narrow"]
3a, some 2c & 3b, medium texture, porosity normal, low elasticity
washing/cowashing, conditioning, protein tx: curl junkie products
leave in:cj conditioners and treatments as leave in
styling: cj pattern pusha, cj honey butta leave in, cj cccc, cj ciab, lalsg. cj aloe fix gel is my high dews/summer HG!!
sealants - spiral solutions emollience butter, jane carter nourish & shine
Glad it helped!
3b spirals, fine texture, normal porosity, dense
Picasa:
Link
Deva Low Poo
Suave Naturals Coconut for detangling
Renpure Organics conditioner/leave-in
Homemade FSG
KCCC
Curl Junkie Stuff
BRHG


Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
-wabi-sabi

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