Hair Routines & Growth,  Hair Type

How Often Should You Wash Natural Low Porosity Hair?

how often to wash low porosity hair

Taking care of natural hair, especially low-porosity hair, can be quite tricky.

There are numerous factors at play, such as hair type, hair shaft structure, hair density, and even curl type.

Even the seemingly simple act of washing your hair requires careful consideration.

Should you opt for a co-wash? Which products suit your low-porosity hair best? And how frequently you should have a wash day to maintain the health of your hair?

For many with low porosity hair, “wash day” can feel like a daunting task. Fortunately, I’m here to offer guidance.

In this article, we’ll go into the intricacies of washing low-porosity hair, offering insights into the frequency of washing and sharing tips and tricks to streamline your wash day routine.

We’ll explore the best products, including lightweight oils and water-based products, tailored specifically for low porosity hair.

Additionally, we’ll address common concerns like product buildup and provide solutions, such as clarifying shampoos and apple cider vinegar rinses.

Furthermore, we’ll touch on styling techniques and protective styles that promote the health of low porosity hair, minimizing damage and maximizing moisture retention.

Whether you have low porosity curly hair, straight hair, or relaxed hair, we’ll help you customize a hair care routine that suits your unique needs.

From protein treatments to hot oil treatments, we’ll explore various strategies to enhance the health and vitality of your low-porosity hair.

So, say goodbye to wash day woes and hello to a smoother, more enjoyable hair care routine tailored to take care of low porosity hair.

Related Post: Tips On How To Grow Your Low Porosity Natural Hair Fast

How Often Should You Wash Your Low-Porosity Hair?

It’s typically advised to cleanse straighter hair types, such as Type 1 and 2, every other day at most.

However, for curly and natural hair types like Type 3 and 4, washing once every 7-10 days is more than enough.

The kinkiest type of hair, 4C, can be washed once every 2-3 weeks.

This frequency accounts for the inherent dryness of these hair types, as the natural oils from the scalp struggle to travel down the tightly coiled hair strands, leaving them thirsty.

Washing more frequently can exacerbate dryness, leading to dull, dry hair.

However, it’s important to recognize that these guidelines are generalizations.

The frequency of washing your natural hair depends on various factors, including scalp condition, individual hair needs, the right products to use, your lifestyle, and even your chosen hairstyle, especially if it’s protective.

Understanding this complexity, let’s go deeper into it.

Related Post: The Best Wash & Go Hair Products For Natural Hair

Factors Affecting Your Wash Day Schedule

The choice of hair products and the quantity you use significantly impact your wash day frequency.

For those with natural hair, we often use heavy products containing oils and butters to help with moisture retention and smoothness, a higher buildup of these components occurs on the scalp, hair follicles, and strands.

If you regularly apply rich products like shea butter and coconut oil, frequent washing becomes necessary.

Your activity level also plays a role. Regular exercise leads to increased sweating, affecting the scalp’s oiliness.

For people engaging in frequent physical activity, oily roots develop within days, prompting more frequent hair washing.

While dry shampoo offers temporary relief, it eventually contributes to product buildup, making hair cleansing all that more important.

Hair’s porosity, referring to its moisture absorption and moisture retention capacity, influences the wash day frequency.

Low porosity hair, characterized by a tightly bound cuticle layer hindering moisture penetration, tends to accumulate products on the hair’s surface, requiring more frequent washes.

Conversely, high porosity hair, with numerous gaps in the cuticle allowing easy moisture and product entry, demands a balanced approach between moisturizing products and wash days to combat rapid moisture loss.

Your hairstyle choice also affects wash frequency.

Those with natural hair textures, particularly kinky and coily types, typically require less frequent washing, ranging from once a week to every few weeks.

Co-washing, though beneficial for injecting moisture and alleviating scalp oiliness, should not replace regular cleansing.

Relaxed hair, chemically altered to a straighter texture, tends to accumulate oil more rapidly and thus necessitates weekly washing.

Protective hairstyles like braids and twists offer extended periods between wash days, focusing primarily on scalp cleansing during washes.

However, periodic breaks from these styles, approximately every three months, are recommended to thoroughly cleanse the hair and scalp with clarifying shampoo.

Understanding these factors provides insight into customizing your hair-washing routine to maintain optimal hair health and cleanliness.

Related Post: An Easy Guide For A Natural Hair Wash Day Routine

Best Shampoo For Low Porosity Hair

Mielle Organics Rosemary Mint Strengthening Shampoo

Mielle Organics Rosemary Mint Strengthening Shampoo is specially formulated for low-porosity hair, infused with nourishing biotin to cleanse and strengthen weak, brittle strands.

The invigorating blend of rosemary and mint not only refreshes the scalp but also promotes hair growth and vitality.

This shampoo effectively removes product buildup while imparting essential nutrients to fortify the hair shaft, leaving your hair feeling clean, refreshed, and fortified against damage.

best shampoo for low porosity hair

Related Post: The Best Pre-Poo For Low Porosity Natural Hair of 2024

How Often Should You Use Clarifying Shampoo On Low Porosity Hair?

A clarifying shampoo boasts powerful cleansing agents designed to provide an intensive scrubbing action.

If your hair appears dry, flat, and lifeless even after a wash day, it might be time to incorporate a clarifying shampoo into your routine.

Typically, it’s recommended to clarify your hair every 4-8 weeks to effectively remove product buildup and restore hair vitality.

For those who frequently wear protective hairstyles, it’s advisable to give your hair a break from these styles every 2-3 months. During your breaks, you can try some of these curly hairstyles for when you’re lazy.

During these breaks, using a clarifying shampoo in between helps to thoroughly cleanse the hair and scalp, promoting optimal hair health.

Related Post: Does Low Porosity Hair Need Protein? Here’s The Tea

Best Clarifying Shampoo For Low Porosity Hair

As I Am Curl Clarity Shampoo

This clarifying shampoo is great for low-porosity hair, take this customer review for example.

“I have low porosity 3c-4b hair. Worn natural it is always been dry, curls that start nice then get frizzy. Went through a lot of ‘natural hair’ care brands, then once I figured out my hair porosity, I found this product among others- tried it and the way my hair washed was amazingly different!

Curls defined, easy to wash, and run my fingers through. Almost no tangles, smells delicious! My curls have never looked better. I’ve already ordered 4 more bottles of shampoo. It’s that good!!! Buy it sis.”

best clarifying shampoo for low porosity hair

Related Post: How To Clarify Curly Hair & How Often You Should Be

Alternatively, you could use an apple cider vinegar rinse to cleanse your hair, here’s my blog post on that.

How Often Should I Co-Wash Low-Porosity Hair?

Co-washing, also known as conditioner-only washing, involves cleansing your hair with a conditioning product rather than traditional shampoo or a clarifying shampoo.

This method is particularly beneficial for fragile natural hair, as it avoids the harsh effects of frequent shampooing while retaining the scalp’s natural oils, crucial for the health of natural hair.

Cationic surfactants in co-washing conditioners effectively remove minor dirt and debris from the scalp without fully stripping the hair.

While co-washing is ideal for dry hair types, it’s essential to limit its frequency to once or twice between regular hair wash days.

Co-washing shouldn’t entirely replace conventional wash days, as thorough cleansing with shampoo is necessary to eliminate buildup, dirt, and bacteria from the scalp and hair follicles.

Related Post: Top 10 Moisturizers for Low Porosity Natural Hair

Best Co-Wash For Low Porosity Hair

Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk Sulfate Free Cleansing Conditioner

Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk Sulfate-Free Cleansing Conditioner is designed specifically for curly hair, offering gentle yet effective cleansing without stripping natural oils.

This innovative formula nourishes and hydrates curls, leaving them soft, defined, and manageable.

Free from sulfates, parabens, and other harsh ingredients, this cleansing conditioner is perfect for maintaining the health and vibrancy of curly hair, while providing the moisture and care curls need to thrive.

Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk Sulfate Free Cleansing Conditioner for Curls

Related Post: Here’s Why You Should Be Co-Washing Your Natural Hair

Can You Wash Your Hair Too Often?

Absolutely! Washing your hair excessively can cause more harm than good, even if you’re using co-washes, natural ingredients, and top-notch products and methods.

This is because overwashing strips the scalp of its natural oils.

Given that natural hair types are prone to dryness, it’s crucial to preserve these natural oils as much as possible.

Related Post: Why Jojoba Oil Is The Best Hair Oil For Low Porosity Hair!

Wash Day Tips for Low Porosity Hair

Here are some summarized tips and tricks for washing your low-porosity hair:

1. Always Pre-Poo: I like to do a hot oil treatment before washing my hair, using lightweight oils like argan oil or a heavy oil like olive oil if I need more moisture. Here are my favorite homemade pre-shampoo treatments you can make today!

2. Frequency: Wash your hair every 7-10 days to avoid stripping natural oils.

2. Co-washing: Incorporate co-washing between wash days to inject moisture without over-cleansing.

3. Clarifying Shampoo: Use a clarifying shampoo every 4-8 weeks to remove product buildup effectively.

4. Product Choice: Opt for lightweight, water-based products to prevent weighing down your low porosity hair.

5. Deep Conditioning: Treat your hair to regular deep conditioning treatments with ingredients like coconut oil or aloe vera to maintain moisture.

Or try making your deep conditioner at home. Use a heat cap or a shower cap to help the deep conditioning treatment penetrate the hair shaft.

6. Temperature: Rinse with warm water to open the hair cuticle for better product absorption, then finish with a cold water rinse to seal the cuticle and enhance shine. Never use hot water!

7. Leave-In Conditioner: Apply a leave-in conditioner to damp hair to lock in moisture and prevent dryness.

8. Protective Styling: Consider protective styles like twists or braids to minimize manipulation and retain moisture.

9. Avoid Over-Drying: Limit the use of heat styling tools and opt for air drying whenever possible to prevent further drying out your low porosity hair.

10. Regular Trims: Schedule regular trims to remove split ends and maintain overall hair health.

11. Moisture Retention: Use lightweight oils like argan or jojoba oil sparingly to seal in moisture without weighing down your hair.

12. Healthy Scalp: Pay attention to scalp health by gently massaging in essential oils like almond oil or tea tree oil to promote circulation and prevent dryness. I like to oil my scalp to improve scalp health.

By following these tips tailored to low-porosity hair, you can maintain healthy, moisturized locks and minimize the risk of dryness and damage.

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