Hair - Hair Type - Porosity

LCO vs. LOC for Your Hair Porosity: How To Choose

Stuck between the LOC and the LCO method for your hair porosity? Find out everything about them in our comprehensive guide!

Written by Danish Bodycare
LCO vs. LOC for Your Hair Porosity

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Understanding LCO vs. LOC for your hair porosity is vital for healthy hair. Hair porosity determines how your hair absorbs and holds moisture.

The LCO and LOC methods help lock in hydration. They stand for Liquid, Cream, Oil, and Liquid, Oil, Cream, respectively.

Selecting the right method can transform dry, dull hair into shiny, healthy locks. Read on to discover which technique best suits your hair type.

What Is Hair Porosity?

What Is Hair Porosity

Hair porosity is all about your hair’s ability to absorb and retain moisture. It’s an essential aspect to understand, as it helps you determine the best way to care for your hair type.

There are three types of hair porosity: low, medium (also called normal), and high.

Hair TypeCuticle CharacteristicsMoisture BehaviorCommon Issues
Low-porosity hairTightly packed cuticlesChallenging for moisture to enter, hair takes longer to dry and feels dry overallDifficulty absorbing moisture
Medium-porosity hairBalanced cuticlesAllows just the right amount of moisture to enter and stay locked inFewer, well-balanced
High-porosity hairMore porous cuticlesAllows moisture to enter and exit quicklyProne to frizziness and tangles, rapid moisture loss

How To Determine Your Hair Porosity

You can determine your hair porosity at home. Here is what you need to do:

  • Grab a clear glass of water and a clean strand of your hair.
  • Ensure your hair is free from any product residue.
  • Place your hair strand in the glass of water.
  • Observe its behavior.
  • If the strand floats at the top, your hair has low porosity.
  • If the strand sinks to the middle, this indicates normal porosity.
  • If the strand sinks to the bottom, you have high porosity hair.

Once you know your hair porosity, you can choose the suitable LCO or LOC method to keep your hair moisturized.

Check out our hair porosity quiz!

The Importance of Moisture Retention for Different Hair Porosities

The Importance of Moisture Retention for Different Hair Porosities

Moisture is essential for maintaining its health, shine, and manageability.

For high-porosity hair, moisture retention is especially crucial. The hair cuticles have gaps that allow moisture to escape with ease, leading to dry and brittle hair.

Different hair porosities have their own challenges with moisture retention. If you have low-porosity hair, it’s harder for moisture to penetrate the hair shaft. Medium porosity hair can hold a balanced amount of moisture with more effortless maintenance.

To address moisture retention for your specific hair porosity, you can choose between LCO and LOC methods.

Both methods aim to lock in hydration and ensure your hair stays healthy.

The LOC Method

The LOC method stands for Liquid, Oil, and Cream, and it is a technique for moisturizing your hair. Here’s a simple explanation of each component:

PhaseDescriptionExample Products
LiquidThis phase involves using water or a water-based leave-in conditioner to hydrate the hairWater or water-based leave-in conditioner
OilAfter applying the liquid, oil is added to seal in the moistureNatural oils like coconut, olive, or jojoba oil
CreamA cream-based product is applied to lock in the hydration and keep the hair soft and manageableCream-based hair products

The LOC Method for Low Porosity Hair

For low-porosity hair, use the LCO method instead of the LOC method for better moisture retention.

In low-porosity hair, the cuticles lie flat and tight. This makes it more difficult for moisture to penetrate your hair shaft.

The LOC Method for Medium Porosity Hair

Medium porosity hair tends to hold moisture well. For this hair type, the LOC method works best to keep your hair moisturized and healthy.

The LOC Method for High-Porosity Hair

The LOC method is beneficial for high-porosity hair, as it helps to keep moisture in for a longer duration.

High-porosity hair has open cuticles, resulting in the hair absorbing moisture fast. It also loses it fast.

Step-by-Step Guide of the LOC Method

Follow these simple steps to use the LOC method for your hair:

  1. Start by wetting your hair with water or spritz your hair with a water-based leave-in conditioner.
  2. Make sure your hair is damp but not soaking wet.
  3. Apply a small amount of your chosen oil to your hair.
  4. Use your fingers or a wide-tooth comb to spread the oil evenly across your strands.
  5. Apply a cream-based product and distribute it evenly throughout your hair.

The final step is crucial for locking in the moisture that the first steps have provided.

The LCO Method

The LCO method stands for Liquid, Cream, and Oil. This technique focuses on layering these products in a specific order to maintain moisture.

LiquidApply a water-based liquid or leave-in conditioner to your hairHydrates the hair and prepares it to absorb and retain the following products
CreamApply a cream-based moisturizer to your hairLocks in the hydration from the liquid and strengthens and nourishes the hair
OilUse an oil of your choice to seal in the moisture from the liquid and cream layersCreates a barrier to prevent moisture loss and keeps the hair soft and shiny

The LCO Method for Low-Porosity Hair

The LCO method is best for low-porosity hair. Applying a cream before the oil helps to moisturize better and nourish the hair.

The cream, being water-based, can penetrate the hair shaft with ease.

Following up with oil helps seal the moisture provided by the liquid and cream. This adds shine and reduces frizz.

The LCO Method for Medium-Porosity Hair

For medium-porosity hair, the LCO method also works well. Your hair cuticles are moderately open. This allows your hair to absorb the optimum amount of moisture.

The LCO Method for High-Porosity Hair

If you have high-porosity hair, the LCO method can still work for you. The key is to choose products that provide deep hydration.

Step-by-Step Guide of the LCO Method

Here is how to use the LCO method:

  1. Start with washed or damp hair.
  2. If your hair is dry, use a spray bottle to dampen it with water.
  3. Use a water-based leave-in conditioner or mist.
  4. Distribute it through your hair, ensuring you cover each strand.
  5. Massage a cream-based moisturizer into your hair, focusing on the driest parts or ends.
  6. Seal in the moisture with your choice of oil, like coconut oil or argan oil, by applying a small amount from mid-lengths to the ends of your hair.
  7. Proceed with your desired hairstyle, or let your hair air dry.

LOC vs. LCO: Which Is Best

LOC vs. LCO Which Is Best

If you have high porosity hair, the LOC method might be more suitable. It helps lock in hydration. For those with low porosity hair, the LCO method works better. It allows for slower absorption of moisture and prevents buildup.

When it comes to keeping your hair moisturized and healthy, the LOC and LCO methods are popular techniques you can use.

Both methods involve applying three products: Liquid, Oil, and Cream. The main difference between them is the order in which these products are applied.

StepLOC MethodLCO Method
1Apply a Liquid or water-based product like a leave-in conditioner to hydrate the hair and prepare it for moisture retentionApply a Liquid or water-based product to start the hydration process
2Apply Oil to seal in the moisture and prevent it from escapingApply a Cream to help lock in the moisture
3Apply a Cream to further seal in the moisture and provide additional nourishmentApply Oil to create a protective barrier and seal in the moisture and nutrients from the cream

Tips and Tricks for LOC and LCO Methods

When using the LOC or LCO method, pick lightweight products. Heavy creams and oils may cause build-up, making it harder for your hair to absorb moisture.

Opt for water-based leave-ins, light creams, and non-greasy oils like grapeseed or jojoba.

Consistency is key. Stick to a routine and adjust products as needed. Track your hair’s progress, and don’t be afraid to switch methods if one isn’t working for you.

Keep in mind that a well-moisturized head of hair takes time and patience.

Happy moisturizing!

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I use the LOC or LCO method?

The answer depends on your hair type and how fast it loses moisture. You should use either of these methods once or twice a week. It’s important to check your hair’s response. This allows you to adjust the frequency to maintain optimal hydration levels.

Which method is more suitable for 4c hair?

While both the LOC and LCO methods aim to moisturize your hair, the LCO method is usually preferable for 4c hair. 4c hair often experiences difficulty retaining moisture, which can lead to dryness and breakage. When catering to 4c hair, it’s essential to find the best method possible.

Can I use gel alongside LCO or LOC routines?

Yes, you can incorporate gel into your LCO or LOC routines as an additional styling product. When using gel, make sure to choose one that compliments your hair’s needs and doesn’t cause protein buildup or weigh the hair down. Apply a lightweight gel after completing the LCO or LOC method to enhance the definition. Remember to adjust the amount of gel if necessary, based on your hair’s requirements and the desired style.

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Danish Bodycare

The Danish Bodycare editorial staff consists of beauty experts, hairstylists, makeup artists, and models with years of experience in the personal care space.