One of my amazing stylists, Tomeika Myers, has a great analogy about split ends, "Split ends are like panty hose: if you get a run, it just keeps right on running. Would you like to trim a little now or a lot next time?" Some things are inevitable, split ends are one of those things.
How often should I get a trim?
Everyone's hair is different; as a stylist, I've observed that one of my clients may need a trim every 4 to 6 weeks and the next one can go 8 to 12 weeks. It all depends. Below are some tips for giving your ends a longer life span and putting off your trim for as long as possible.
"Split ends are like panty hose: if you get a run, it just keeps right on running. Would you like to trim a little now or a lot next time?"- Tomeika Myers
How to prevent frequent trims
The key to preventing frequent trims is to take care of your ends. Here are my recommendations:
1. Apply penetrating oils for moisture
Use penetrating oils like argan, avocado, coconut, sunflower, or olive oil to protect your hair strands from the inside out and help retain moisture.
2. Apply a sealing oil
Use coating and sealing oils like castor, jojoba, shea, and safflower to lock in or seal in all the wonderful moisture.
A word of caution: depending on your hair type and porosity, your recommended amounts of the oils may vary.
3. Rock a protective style on healthy hair
When your hair is in a protective style you aren't fiddling with your ends. Always opt to use penetrating and coating oils before you get a protective style.
"Your ends are the oldest part of your hair so you must treat them like royalty," says Susy, Celebrity Stylist, at Hairbysusy in Brooklyn, New York. "As you trim your hair it grows. Unfortunately, most Hairstylist's install extensions for the look and the drama of it. When installing hair, you must keep the health and longevity of your hair in mind. You can have drama and healthy hair!" I personally recommend getting a trim before your extension style, especially if your hair will be tucked away for 4 or more weeks.
4. Before you wear your hair down...
If you do opt to wear your hair down, be cautious of the material you are wearing. This may seem like something small, but if you are wearing thick t-shirt, wool, or tweed (just name a few), and your hair is rubbing against that all day, you are pretty much telling your hair to split right on up. Pull your hair up during the day if you are in the office at your computer. I know, it's your hair…so you can decide if you want to swing it all day every day or constantly trim it.
5. Step away from the heat!
I'm not saying that you cannot do the occasional heat styling, but understand that too much heat will fry your ends. If you are a natural with color-treated hair, you are more susceptible to splitting more frequently. Honestly, speaking the tighter the curl pattern the weaker the strands, all hair cannot take constant heat styling. If you must apply heat, try Cantu Thermal Shield Heat Protectant or Alterna Bamboo Smooth Kendi Treatment. Even when protectants are used and you are getting steam treatments, heat may dry your hair out, as well as weaken your curl pattern.
Susy put it very well when she said, "Love your hair and love yourself."
Nurture, love, and trim your hair and it will grow.