You know what they say, “If you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to ask for a glass of milk.” But I say, if you give a girl a fresh hair color, she’s going to want a trim to go with it. Because asking for a “light trim” with my trimonthly bleaching appointment seems so obligatory: freshen up the roots, freshen up the ends, right? But here’s the thing— a trim isn’t always necessary, in fact, it might be the reason you can’t grow your hair past your shoulders.
If hair typically grows, say, 1/2 inch per month, and every two months you trim off an inch of your hair to “keep in healthy,” thats just a really good way to go NOWHERE fast. I’m going to quote Amber when she wrote, “You’ve heard me say it and I will say it a million times again, but for heavens sake can we chill out with the trims?! I was a hair dresser for years and all the time my clients would say, “I need a trim”, and I would tell them their hair looked healthy and I didn’t think they needed one and their response was always, “well its been 6 weeks.”…If you have been taking good care of your hair, you may not need one for months and months at a time, so give your hair time to grow and only trim when necessary.” So simply put, if we take care of our ends, we can avoid trims and let our hair finally grow a little! OK, then let’s keep our ends looking FRESH.
Some of my biggest tips for keeping my ends healthy and split-end-free, are to:
Use a moisturizing deep conditioner at least once a week, and leave that thing on for thirty minutes— keeping it especially concentrated on the ends, where the hair is oldest. I love using THIS one, for my weekly moisturizing/repairing treatment. A deep conditioner can help restore vitamins and moisture-loss to brittle ends.
If you bleach or lighten your hair AT ALL, I highly recommend getting on a protein bond-building treatment, which will repair hair from the inside out. I swear a product like Olaplex No. 3 is going to be a game changer for your hair, in repairing damaged ends.
Before and after styling your hair, use a moisturizing hair oil on your ends. A good hair oil, like THIS, can be such a great tool in helping to restore much needed anti-oxidants and nutrients to dull, lifeless ends. Because ends lacking strong proteins and nutrients are the hair that breaks and splits.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it one billion times again— avoid using heat on your hair if you can. It is SO damaging to your hair. If you can’t go without heat, make for dang sure that you use a heat protectant with it. **Barefoot Blonde Hair Lab voted THIS and THIS as the best heat protectants.
Use a split end mender on both wet and dry hair. Yep, there actually exist products that are specifically targeted toward keeping ends “sealed” up and smoothed out— a kind of protein based hair glue. Using one will help your ends to feel silky soft and smooth and be more uniform-non-split-looking. I love THIS one.
If you’re feeling desperate for a trim and you MUST cut off of some dead ends, use the “dusting” technique to get rid of them. It’s a technique in which your stylist will cut off the dead ends, by quickly running her scissors down your hair, without cutting off actual length. Only 1/4 inch, or so, of the damaged hair is cut off— so you get a healthy end and no length is sacrificed. Dust. Don’t cut (unless you really need a cut, because that happens, too).
So here’s to cookies without milk and hair colors without cuts. Let’s keep our ends healthy and let our hair (finally) grow.
Article and images by Amy Hutchens.