by Cipriana of Urbanbushbabes.com
If there is hell on earth for women trying to grow and retain length it’s split ends ends. Split ends (or Trichoptilosis; the Greek ‘tricho’ translates to ‘hair’ and the New Latin ‘ptilosis’ translates loosely to ‘feathers) is the splitting of the hair shaft due to excessive heat and manual stress. It occurs when the protective cuticle has been stripped away from the ends of hair fibers. Split ends develop mostly in dry or brittle hair. Once the cuticle is removed it cannot be replaced. Here’s everything you need to know about split ends and what you can do to keep your ends sane.
Causes of Split Ends:
Dry hair, coloring, perming, relaxing, too much heat (including blow dryers), manual stress and lack of self- induced moisture. Manual stress includes pulling a comb or brush excessively and forcefully through tangled hair.
Repairing Split Ends:
is a huge myth. There is no real way to repair split ends except to cut them off.
Sealing Split Ends:
This is a method of temporarily putting back together split ends for appearance sake. The best way to seal ends is to use serum. The split ends will seal together but this method is very much like using tape or glue to seal your ends, which can cause even more damage as the split ends can travel further along the shaft as the serum wears off — though most split ends tend to break off not far from the damaged area. I know someone might be thinking “well what is the point of cutting split ends if they simply break off regardless?” Well, after the breakage you are left with frayed ends that are more susceptible to split again. Unfortunately there is no magical mending solution to split ends.
Eliminating Split Ends:
You can trim your hair or you can take sections and do a search and destroy — checking the ends and trimming individual split strands instead of doing a blunt trim. I prefer this method since I have a low amount of split ends due to no use of heat in over 2 years. Be sure to cut split ends at least 1/8 inches above the damaged area. Most importantly always remember to use a good pair of professional hair scissors. Using dull blades can actually cause more damage to your fresh cut ends
Preventing Split Ends:
Eliminating or decreasing the amount of heat you regularly use in your routine is key for prevention. Straightening your hair only decreases the amount of natural oils (called sebum) from your already thirsty strands putting you at greater risk for split ends. Consistently moisturizing your hair is half the battle, and paying special attention to your ends (the oldest part of your hair) is a necessity. Split ends for the most part form at the ends because it is the driest area of the hair which is why sealing your ends should be incorporated in your regular hair routine.
Ridding yourself of split ends is essential in retaining length and for the overall health of your hair. Hoping they will just disappear is wishful thinking and not eliminating them immediately can cause further damage. Not only can your ends split into two but branch off into more splits along the same strand, known as “branching”. To hang on to a couple of inches of damaged ends just for length sake is insanity and will jeopardize your hair in the long run. The choice is yours but make it quickly because split ends have a way of sneaking up on you.
Ladies, how do you deal with split ends?