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View Full Version : can you cut off damage slowly?



ghilliegirl_an
February 13th, 2011, 11:25 AM
I've had long hair nearly my entire life and I love it, about 3 1/2 years ago though a hair dresser cut off around 2 feet of hair all the way up to bsl, after this cut I started straightening my hair every day because if I didn't it barely fell to shoulder length(my hair is naturally curly). 3 years later my hair is about hip length pulled straight and heat damaged up to about midback length. I really don't want to cut my hair that short to cut off the damage and the damage itself isn't really noticeable unless you look closely or I wear my hair in a tight braid. Everyone tells me that if I don't cut all the damage off my hair will just keep breaking anyway, I don't really understand this logic because I know I've read of people on here that have maintained their current length while growing out hair dye damage so I don't really get the difference. My plan was to cut about an inch off every 2 months until the damage is cut off, I did this last about two months ago and while I still have damage on the length of my hair the ends themselves are in good shape. I no longer straighten, blow dry, or tease my hair, I only use hairspray when absolutely necessary(dance to keep down flyaways) and I wear my hair up and condition it carefully. Is it a hopeless cause to try and keep my hair this length until the damage is off or do I have to cut it all off in order for it not to keep breaking? Thanks for any advice.

-Ashley

Madora
February 13th, 2011, 11:30 AM
Damaged hair is weakened hair, and weakened hair is fragile and will eventually break.

dancingunicorn
February 13th, 2011, 11:44 AM
you can maintain your length by cutting off about half an inch per month, and slowly get rid of the damage at the same time :)

spitfire511
February 13th, 2011, 11:49 AM
Nightshade wrote a great article about growing damaged hair here http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=79

I'd check it out - she's got some great info. I would say that, yes, you can keep trimming as you are, but you're going to have to completely baby that damaged hair to minimize the breakage. Like you said, no heat-styling at all, make sure you're using a wide toothed (no seams) comb etc.

Personally, (as you can tell from my album) when I get frustrated I tend to chop mine off, like I did in December to get rid of all of the layers that I had.

I don't think anything is a hopeless cause if you're willing to work for it! :D

EvaSimone
February 13th, 2011, 11:58 AM
You can definitely slowly cut off damage! I had badly damaged hair when I first started at Lhc. Now I am about half an inch from tailbone and the damage is gone. It took me four years but was better than a dramatic chop. I also second Nightshade's article.

AnnaJamila
February 13th, 2011, 12:06 PM
You can slowly cut out damage, but you will end up cutting a little more in the end. If you really baby it, maintaining to cut out damage you can expect to cut off(depending of the length damaged) around 15-20 inches. Chopping all at once, you can expect to cut off around 10-15 inches.

If you think about it, though, while growing back out to hip you'll be trimming as well, so the one big chop would end up only putting you a few inches ahead of the game.

I've always been pretty "good" when it came to my hair, so I'm basing this off of a close friend's expiriences.

Roscata
February 13th, 2011, 01:00 PM
Nightshade wrote a great article about growing damaged hair here http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=79

I'd check it out - she's got some great info. I would say that, yes, you can keep trimming as you are, but you're going to have to completely baby that damaged hair to minimize the breakage. Like you said, no heat-styling at all, make sure you're using a wide toothed (no seams) comb etc. [...]

I agree with this completely. You CAN grow out damage if you don't want to loose length.
Definitely read that article and good luck on your hair journey! :D

ericthegreat
February 13th, 2011, 01:21 PM
It depends on just how bad the damage is really. If the overall condition of your hair is very weak, then no matter what kind of great care that you give to your hair, the chances are great that you will have a lot of breakage anyway, so even if you don't cut it off, since its too badly damaged it will break off on its own anyway.

If the damage is not that extreme, then the best solution is to cut off all the damaged ends, say the bottom two inches of your hair, then continue a new haircare routine that is gentler on your hair (no heat styling, color or other chemicals, using moisturizing conditioners and oils).

cinemax
February 13th, 2011, 01:52 PM
I'm growing damaged hair out. Plan on trimming until my short side hairs catches up with the longer hair. I know it will take a long time but I don't want to cut it all even, I'd have a Bob.

jujube
February 13th, 2011, 07:41 PM
Well I have a bob, actually. And that bob is still damaged from chemical dye and me trying to flat iron my hair into submission. Do I want to go back to pixie length? Absolutely not. I was heat-styling to make my hair look ok while it grew out, and the damage will be babied and trimmed off eventually.

I think in the end it's about what matters most to you: length or health. You seem to prefer long hair over healthy hair. Some LHCers would have cut off the damage completely, while others would baby it to keep length. You seem to prefer length, as I do, and Nightshade's article is a very good start to help you with that.

Anywhere
February 13th, 2011, 07:58 PM
My hair is dyed (multiple times), straightened many times, bleached, dyed again. It's about 45% virgin right now and I still haven't chopped off the damage entirely. If your hair is able to somewhat recover from the damage then it should be okay, but if it breaks off in your hands it might be a good idea to chop it.

SpeakingEZ
February 13th, 2011, 08:24 PM
If I chopped off all the damage I have, I'd probably have to cut off more in the long run. At the damage-free length, I wouldn't be able to put my hair up at all and I finally got the shortest strands in the front long enough to go up in a bun. After being out of protective length for so long, I'm sure that those front strands are more damaged now than they were before I trimmed them.

wildblue
February 13th, 2011, 08:49 PM
I've got damage I'm trying to grow out too... thanks to my flat iron lol. My plan is to dust once a month and do S&D every week or two. I'm off to read that recommended article now. :)

Mesmerise
February 13th, 2011, 09:05 PM
It sounds to me as if your damage is not THAT extreme, and if your ends seem healthy then there's no reason why you can't cut it out slowly. Overall I think that's the best way to go about it!

Read the advice here about caring for your hair so you're extra careful with the damaged hair (so that there's no more damage), and eventually it will all get cut out without you having to sacrifice length in the meantime.

SheaLynne
February 13th, 2011, 11:27 PM
I am another who is slowly trimming away damaged length, while keeping my length. Mine was not terribly damaged, but from APL to nearly waist, I had done alot of blow drying with a round brush and following with a flatiron, for over a year, and then did 6 months of wash-out color.

I stopped all the damaging styling nearly 2 years ago, and for over a year, I've been trimming 1/4 inch each month, and it keeps the ends decent, and along with wearing hair up and S&Ding splits out, it is looking okay. I am now just hitting true tb, and I have about 4 more inches of damage to trim away. I may decide at classic to maintain there and get rid of the old ends faster at that point.

I figure I can keep everything more protected when it is long enough to do updos, whereas if I had cut the damaged length all at once, I would have been back to where I couldn't manage most updos. So, it is working for me.

I have monthly progress pics in my album.

strigiformes
February 14th, 2011, 01:22 AM
I am also trying to grow out some old damage, trimming it away as I go. The main problem I have is that the damaged areas are more prone to tangling. It puts more stress on the healthy hair when I am constantly having to comb and brush them out. I really have to remind myself to be gentle about it so I'm not stretching, breaking, and yanking out my hair.

I guess I need to think about wearing my hair up more, but I'm pretty clueless about updos, which is part of why I'm here! :) Best of luck to you in growing out your hair!