Dry, split ends cause breakage, while moisturized ends are more pliable and retain length. Some people shy away from trimming their ends because they do not want to lose length. But split ends cause the hair to tear all the way up to the scalp, which will result in you having to get a major cut. Split ends should be cut at least 1 inch above the split.

A good way to prevent split ends, along with moisturizing, is to dust/trim the ends of your hair. When your ends start to feel crunchy, or you hear popping when you detangle, or start to see tiny hairs in the sink that are not old shedded hairs (with white bulbs at the tips), these are signs that you may need to “dust” your ends.

The easiest way to trim/dust your own ends is when your hair is in box braids or twists, or stretched. Using stainless steel hair cutting scissors, cut the damaged portion only off of each end. You can also do this when you find individual knots, so it’s not necessary to do your entire head.
Moisturizing your ends during the week is a good way to protect them. Use a spray bottle filled with water and/or conditioner to spritz the ends of your hair. Then use oils such as shea butter, castor oil, olive oil, almond oil, etc. to seal in the moisture.

You can also protect your ends by detangling with conditioner, with your hands first then a wide tooth comb, as well as avoiding high-heat appliances and air drying whenever possible. Wearing “protective” styles, such as updos, braids, cornrows, or twists, are also helpful in protecting your ends.

Check out the following video on how I trim/dust my ends.


– Laquita Thomas-Banks

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