We all dread the dreadful split ends and knowing the best way to get rid of split ends can be hard if you don't do the research. Split ends happen slowly and then spread like wildfire and come all at once. Split ends are undetectable at first, so you continue living your best life and not paying any real attention to your hair and then all of a sudden, a couple weeks or months later your luscious hair is riddled with split ends leaving your ends looking scraggled, dry and with so much frizz! Never neglect and miss your appointments to your hairdresser because your split ends will get worse and your hair will not grow to be long and beautiful.
For some people, split ends can be a chronic problem whilst others have the ability to maintain long, strong, healthy hair with hardly any effort. Genetics can play a huge role in your hairs ability to grow without breakage but there are still steps you can take to reduce the risk and prevent split ends. Knowing why you get split ends in the first place to knowing how to prevent them, we got the information you need below.
What Are Split Ends?
Split ends happen when one single strand of hair splits into two. If you're someone that is notorious for sitting there and pulling apart your split ends, then you have a high chance you're going to make things worse. Split ends occur because of your hair shaft splitting or fraying. Although, split ends are mostly recognisable on the ends of your hair however they can even happen anywhere on the hair strand.
Don't fret though, split ends are actually entirely normal however, when in large amounts this is when it's a major concern. Split ends aren't only aesthetically displeasing but they can also indicate that your hair is actually damaged, dry and downright unhealthy. If you neglect treating your hair with proper care, then the problem of split ends will only escalate quickly which will result in severe hair breakage throughout your hair strands and create brittleness overall. If you've never taken the time to assess your hair real close up to determine if there are any split ends happening you could be left with a real problem.
What Causes Split Ends?
Bad hair habits! Like we mentioned earlier, genetics play a role in the number of factors of how bad your split ends could be or the texture and health of your hair. Common culprits are everyday stresses to your hair like taking really hot showers, brushing your hair roughly, putting your hair up in a towel to dry and even sleeping with your hair tired back in a bun or ponytail - these are all factors that can cause split ends or back your split ends much worse. Most people wouldn't even realise this is something they're doing and something that is actually causing their hair damage without even realising it.
If you're someone that notoriously uses heated tools to style their hair, this is a very big factor in what will bring on split ends or worsen your condition of split ends. Heated styling tools are hair dryers, straighteners, curling wands/irons and even hot rollers. Heated tools strip moisture from the hair which is what makes your hair delicate and far more susceptible to split ends. Add chemical treatments into the mix, regardless if you use heated tools or not, chemical treatments such as chemical straightening or perms mixed with colouring or lifting your hair will weaken the integrity of your hair which shouldn't surprise you when you see an increase in split ends in your hair. Use a thermal spray to help protect your hair from damage! Using the wrong sorts of hair products is another factor in what can create a playground for split ends. If you are using hair products that are full of drying agents and alcohols that will strip your hair of moisture will only increase dryness and hair breakage overall throughout your hair.
You'll be surprised to know this, but the climate and weather around you is another factor in what can create split ends and damaged hair - pitty this is something you can't control however, you can treat your hair accordingly. Environmental aggressors such as too much sun exposure or a lack of humidity can lead your hair down a path to dryness which in turn creates split ends. Also, bad nutrition with a lack of nutrients from a terrible diet with vitamin deficiencies and hormones added to the mix is another role not many realise play a role in unhealthy hair.
How To Get Rid Of Split Ends?
We hate to break it to you but you can't permanently get rid of split ends, in fact you can't get rid of them all. The only real way you can prevent or decrease split ends is a regular trim from your hairdresser. It may sound counterintuitive that getting regular trims will help but we promise you it will help because it will make your hair grow faster and come back stronger. Getting regular trims will help because because if you're not cutting off the split ends in your hair, your hair will only continue to break and split ends won't go anywhere because they'll only continue to travel up the hair shaft. You can try using hair products that will smooth the hair such as oils, gels or serums to help your hair stay hydrated, minimise the appearance of split ends and tame unruly frizzy hair - regular trims are the only real cure to help decrease split ends. Depending on your hair texture, try and have your hair cut every 6 to 8 weeks for optimal healthy hair results.
A tip we have to share with you when it comes to growing long, shiny, strong is making sure you're feeding yourself with well nourishing foods. A well nourishing diet consists of fruits, healthy fats and vegetables to help with not only your hair but your skin, mental health and overall wellbeing. If you're not getting all your nutrients from your diet, be proactive and take a supplement to boost anything your body is lacking. Folic acid and biotin to be more specific have demonstrated abilities to assist in improving your hairs health, thickness and length. You can find biotin in walnuts, lentils and brown rice and works by metabolising fats, proteins and carbohydrates in a unique way that strengthens not only your hair but your nails also. Folic acid can be found in leafy greens and oranges which will help facilitate production of red blood cells which is what causes hair growth. Also, don't forget water! Hydration through water will never be detrimental to your health and it will especially help in growing your hair and making it healthy.
How To Prevent Split Ends?
Preventing split ends is by far the best treatment. Regardless if you're blessed with healthy, resilient hair, there are a number of things you can do too that will prevent split ends from occurring and maintaining the integrity of your hair. It's vital to remember that dry hair and split ends go hand in hand so make sure you are doing everything you can to keep your hair hydrated and moisturised.
Using the right products is another way to keep split ends at bay. Washing your hair less frequently and using the correct shampoos and conditioners as well as styling products will go a long way. Try and keep the usage of clarifying shampoos to a minimum because they can sometimes be too hard on the hair and be stripping it of vital oils. It's important to research ingredients found in conventional hair products because more often and not you will find them to filled with toxic chemicals, harsh drying agents as well as other ingredients such as sulphate and parabens which never do your hair any good. Avoid these ingredients at all costs! We recommend looking for products that have been targeted towards dry and damaged hair because you'll find the formulas used will contain high-quality ingredients - just remember to still look through the ingredients to avoid using any of the listed nasties we mentioned earlier.
Another way to prevent your hair is to try the condition-shampoo-condition method on your hair if it is especially brittle. Instead of starting your hair washing routine with shampoo, apply conditioner to your mid-lengths to ends first as this will reinforce and protect your hair so that it can lock in moisture better. After that, shampoo once and then end it with another round of conditioner.
This one may break your heart a little but try avoid colouring your hair too much or at all. Sticking to your natural colour is best but we know that natural colours aren't for everyone so if you are someone that regularly dyes or bleaches their hair, try to do it as least as possible and prolong visits if you can (but don't miss your trims!). Try and opt for a lower maintenance hairstyle like balayage or baby-lights because they require the least amount of times you need to visit your hairdresser for colouring.
Most importantly, it's imperative you are being gentle with your hair whenever you're touching it or styling it. Try avoid brushing your hair fresh out of the shower because wet hair is when it is most delicate and can cause your hair to snap. Be gentle when you are towel drying your hair and avoid twisting and wringing your hair also. When sleeping, don't put your hair in high ponytails or buns because you will be adding strain on your hair throughout the night with the added stress of your movements throughout your sleep can be detrimental to your hair - try using a silk scrunchy or elastic that doesn't have any hardware on it.
On the topic of sleep, throw out your normal cotton pillowcase and swap it for a silk pillowcase. We have mentioned in previous blogs before the benefits of sleeping on a silk pillowcase but to refresh your memory or educate those that don't know, sleeping on a silk pillowcase reduces frizz and friction when sleeping which is ideal for your hair because it isn't prone to knots and tangles. Instead your hair glides easily on the silk and can breathe. Silk pillowcases are also heaven sent for your skin - double win!
With all that being said, split ends are something no one wants and we hope knowing and how to prevent split ends will now bring you a head full of hair that is healthy and well taken care of. Remember to read the ingredients on the backs of bottles from the hair products you're using, use thermal spray, sleep on a silk pillowcase, visit your salon regularly for trims and maintain a nutritious diet full of veggies + fruit. Soon you'll notice a difference in more than just your hair!