Split ends occur when the outer covering of a strand of hair comes away from the main shaft, resulting in hair made up of several weaker sub-strands. Split ends give hair the look of being dry, dull and damaged, and it is extremely fragile. Without its protective, shiny surface to bind it, hair can easily break.
Causes of Split Ends
Split ends are caused by stress to the hair and this arises in many ways. Weather damage such as over-exposure to the sun causes a loss of protein in the hair which makes it more vulnerable. Sea water and chlorinated swimming pool water both dry out hair, making it prone to damage.
Rough towel drying or combing can cause split ends, and when wet, the hair is far more at risk. Washing the hair too frequently strips the hair of its natural oils and makes it less resilient. Hair dyes often contain harsh chemicals which draw nutrients out of the hair and leave it straw-like and brittle. Be gentle when you are drying your hair; do not squeeze your hair too hard. Just pat it gently with a towel. Avoid using the blow-dryer too excessively. This causes split ends easily.
Avoid also the tendency of combing your hair too much; it can cause hair damage. Comb gently while avoiding pulling or tugging your tangles. If there are any, undo them using your fingers instead of the comb.
Treatments for Split Ends
Once the hair has split ends, there is really no way to restore it to its former glory. Silicone based products may provide a temporary solution, sealing the ends of the hair, but this only lasts till your next wash. The only permanent solution is to have a haircut that will remove all traces of the split ends. It is important not to leave the problem unchecked for too long, as the longer the split ends are left, the higher up the strands of hair the splits will extend and the more you will have to cut off to eradicate the problem.
Prevention of Split Ends
This can be achieved by protecting the hair adequately from the sun and treated or salt water. Hair should always be handled gently without rough brushing or combing. Natural mild shampoo and conditioner will help to preserve the condition of the hair. Treating the hair over night with Coconut Oil can also replenish the hair, and make it soft and shiny. Avoiding harsh dye treatments can make a big difference, as can trimming the hair regularly.
As the saying goes, “Prevention is better than Cure.” Preventive measures are still best in avoiding split ends on your hair. It is easy to prevent if you are aware of the consequences of bad hair and are motivated for better hair. It only takes some disciplined changes that involve your hygienic practices. It would be worth the effort in the long run as you put yourself in the routine of maintaining the good health of your hair. This will ensure that split ends do not happen.