High porosity hair has very specific requirements when it comes to hair care. As the cuticles are raised, this type of hair is very prone to damage and needs the right hair care regimen to regain some strength.
Unlike with low porosity hair products, you can’t simply go for specific ingredients and hope for the best.
Instead, you need to combine specific products the right way and do regular treatments to make your hair the best that it can be.
Let’s look a little more in detail at the products that will help high porosity hair, and when and how often to use them!
Related: What is hair porosity and why should you care?
Disclosure: Some of the links below are so-called provision links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
High porosity hair care
Before we dive into the specific types of products you’ll need for your high porosity hair care regimen, you need to know a few general things to look out for.
With high porosity hair, minimizing (additional) damage is key!
Stay away from heat at all costs. Forget about “heat protectants” and stuff like that. Your hair can’t deal with it. Unless you really like the “fried” look, you simply want to avoid all kinds of heat. Even the water you wash your hair with should be lukewarm. Not hot.
Related: How to dry hair without heat
No more “sleep damage”
Absolutely protect your hair in the night. Get a satin or silk pillowcase*, wear a bonnet or a Slap* or simply wrap a silk cloth around your hair before going to bed. Whichever variant you choose, all of these will help your hair retain moisture and avoid friction that can lead to additional breakage.
Related: My Satin lined cap review: benefits & tips
Alright. That needed to be said. Believe me when I tell you that these things will make a significant difference in your hair health!
Let’s move on to your ideal high porosity hair care regimen!
The ideal high porosity hair care regimen
Ideally, your hair care regimen for your high porosity hair contains pretty much everything:
- regular deep conditioning to moisturize your hair
- monthly protein treatments to help fill the “holes” in your hair structure (unless you have any signs of protein overload!)
- after a wash rinsing your hair with anything that closes the cuticle layer like an apple cider vinegar rinse or simply ice cold water
- using sealing oils on damp hair to “lock in” the moisture
High porosity hair products to get you started
Alright, so now you want to see actual products you can get, right?
To get you started, I picked a few high porosity hair products you can easily get online. Test a few and find out what works for you!
Testing is not optional here. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as the best products for high porosity hair – it’ll depend on your own hair type!
Shampoo for high porosity hair
With high porosity hair, you want to use gently cleansing shampoos. A good example for this is the Shea Moisture High Porosity Moisture Seal Shampoo*.
It’s sulphate free and color safe. Hint: Color safe is a good keyword to look for when you’re looking for a high porosity shampoo. It means, that the shampoo is not “stripping” too much!
You can order the Shea Moisture High Porosity Shampoo here!*
Deep conditioner for high porosity hair
High porosity hair greatly benefits from regular deep conditioning treatments. A good deep conditioner for high porosity hair is the Sheamoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Treatment Masque*.
It contains a lot of moisturizing ingredients that will help beat dryness. And, it is curly-girl approved. So all followers of the curly girl method can absolutely use it!
Get the Sheamoisture deep conditioner here*!
Related: 10 curly girl approved conditioners
Related: 6 hand-selected, curly girl approved shampoos
Protein hair mask for high porosity hair
For most high porosity hair types, regular protein treatments are extremely helpful. Just make sure to not overdo it. (If you need a refresher, find more information on your hair and protein here.)
The Arvazallia Fortifying Protein Hair Mask* is a real protein bomb.
It contains hydrolysed wheat protein, and different oils.
However, if you follow the curly girl method, you might wanna pick a different protein mask, as this one also contains silicones.
Get the Protein Hair Mask here*!
Heavy sealing oils for high porosity hair
To seal in the moisture after a wash or after applying Aloe Vera gel* on your hair, you want to use sealing oils. For most high porosity hair types, this can be a rich, heavy sealing oil. Sesame oil* would absolutely work, but I personally prefer cocoa butter. (I know, it’s not really oil. It’s fat. It works.)
You can absolutely get raw organic cocoa butter* and use that, or you can order a pot of Palmer’s cocoa butter*.
I use their cocoa lip balm* and
High porosity & fine hair: products to keep it light
Yes, there is such a thing as thin high porosity hair. And it’s tricky!
If you have fine hair with high porosity, you’re facing a double challenge. Not only do you need to deal with easily damaged hair, but all the treatments can also weigh your fine hair down.
So while the general tips for a high porosity hair care regimen apply to you, you might want to opt for slightly different products.
First of all, when it comes to sealing oils and creams, you don’t want to go for the heavy options like cocoa butter. Instead, choose a light sealing oil like jojoba oil*, almond oil*, or grapeseed oil*.
Related: 7 curly girl approved hair oils for shiny locks
Related: The best curly girl approved products
When it comes to conditioners, you also want to opt for products that are not too “buttery”.
A good example of a lightweight conditioner without silicones and sulfates is the Silk 18 Conditioner* by Maple Holistics. It still contains proteins, helping your hair structure. You can get it here*!
Did these tips help your high porosity hair regimen?
If you found this helpful, please share it with others as well!
And, as usual, make sure to pin this to your hair care board!
*These links are so-called provision links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
I have found that if you have high porosity it is is a good idea to give up shampoo especially if you have curly hair so instead switch to clay washing. If you must use shampoo it is best to use silk but make sure it is sulphate free or has no sodium chloride as these can cause hair to be dryer than normal.
Look for hair products that have silk AMINO ACIDS as they penetrate the hair strand deeper constant use may help you be less dry + hair will also be more hydrated if you oil the hair before blow-drying on COLD air.
If you find an item with HYDROLYSED SILK it is OK to use but will not help you retain moisture for long – it is best to have at least 3 items that have silk that you will use every time you wash / daily styling:
for example = only silk AMINO ACIDS items: use silk shampoo ( baby shampoo is best as it is more gentle to scalp ) + silk conditioner + silk serum
Silk is great at repairing damage quickly also protects you from UV damage too it works best for those with thin or weak dry hair = most high porosity have fine hair even those that have Afro hair
I have seen benefits of doing COLD blow-dry even with silk serums in less than a year = hair has more shine + feels super smooth + grows better; hot blow dry made my hair crispy. I love silk in my hair I have 2 silk serums 1 is for blow-dry the other is a spray used after styling to add sheen it stops me relying on hair gel. I also have a silk foam which can be for heat or flexi-rods as it has slight hold….overall I have 6 different products with silk including a clarify shampoo I use this once a month.
My main way to clean my scalp is between clay washing or doing an Arab wash using SIDRA I got mine from amazon – I prefer the Arab wash as it is more astringent + the clay I use is mitti and it must not be used too often as it can cause bleaching but does reduce frizz by 25% & it is so easy to rinse out lots of ideas on YouTube how to use this to replace shampoo – mitti is used to remove snake poison so it must be great for the scalp so to be safe I use it for 1 month then use my other cleanser for 2 months then repeat.
Mitti is quite drying so add 2 tbsp soy oil or use a nut oil as they are fatty & both are higher in CERAMIDES than olive oil so hair repairs faster + retains moisture better due to the OMEGA fats!
Wow, Rachelle, thank you for this super comprehensive comment. It makes sense that silk would work great on highly porous hair, giving it that extra protein boost!
I’ll look a little more into the clay washing, sounds interesting!