The one thing no one wants to see are split ends staring back at them in the mirror. Before we get into how splits happen, let's get a definition. In my book, The Book of Natural Hair Questions & Answers From A Stylist's Perspective, I define split ends as:
"Hair ends that split from the bottom of the hair strands." Don't be confused with hair tears. That's when hair breaks away from the side of the strands. Not the bottom. Think of them as fraternal twins.
Products CAN'T correct splits and tears. You have to cut to correct. Some damage can't be seen with the naked eye. Cutting above is your best option to rid your problem. Never at the beginning.
Products, excessive heat, and styling can cause issues too. If the wrong products are used, the hair can dry out, and splitting can occur. Think of your skin. When it's dry, it cracks. When it's hydrated, it thrives, just like hair. One of my favorite moisturizers is by Kavella. Their Healing Tea Conditioner helps with hydration. Massaging the conditioner into the ends (not the scalp), and leaving it on for 10 minutes will help hair retain moisture.
The high heat from flat irons and blow drying can cause damage too. Oils used during the drying and styling process don't help either. Chemist Henry Owegi stated oils can leave the hair heavy with build-up and burn when a flat iron is used. If it's not designed to be an ingredient in a product, leave it alone.
Braids and twists are a styling option some like. But beware. The process of making synthetic hair and the harsh dyes it contains can be damaging. If you choose to braid, try human hair. It's less likely to cut and cause breakage.
Genetics can play a part. Super curly hair has a tendency to wrap around itself and cause knots. Drinking plenty of water and deep conditioning is helpful. Hydration is the key. Since the hair is made of protein. Eating beans and lentils is a great source.
In the end, keep a digital hair journal for a year. Fill it with hair photos and products you've used. Track the weather too. Your findings may surprise you. After all, split ends don't happen overnight. It's a process.
If there's anything you would like to read about, please tell me in the comment section.
Photo by: POWER AND SYRED/SCIENCE SOURCE