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naereid
April 16th, 2010, 12:22 PM
Just got back from the salon. My hairdresser was totally impressed when she saw my wavy conefree hair - she thought I'd used a curling iron. It looks really good when I go natural. The trouble started once she blowdried it straight. The straightness made every flaw in my hair completely visible. Honestly, it was quite horrifying to look at. :o

I'm growing out of layers that are now between shoulder and APL, while my length is at BSL. Both my shorter and longer layers are splitty, and when you combine them you get one long streak of damage. She said if it were her, she'd just chop it all off at shoulder length and start anew. :( Last time I saw her I was using cones, and she was shocked at how suddenly my hair is so much more damaged. Well, yeah, that's what cones do, hide the damage. I let her cut off the worst of the damage on the lower layers, about 3 cm. (last trim was 6 months ago, I think)

Long story short, now I'm thinking of maybe cutting off my new growth every 2 months until the shorter layers reach my hemline. (I'm inspired by Emichiee's blog post on growing out taper) That would mean maintaining it at BSL this entire year instead of getting to waist... but I guess there's no other way aside from a big chop - which I would never, ever do. :(

Do you have any advice? Maybe I'm not thinking outside the box?

You can't see the damage on this pic, it's just here to show the lengths I'm talking about. The square area is where the short layer damage is.
http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/anthyh/LHC/IMG_4611.jpg

GoddesJourney
April 16th, 2010, 12:40 PM
Yeah, join the club. I endend up slowly cutting off all the layers. This set me way back on my goal, but since the whole head of hair was damaged anyway, it really helped me. I hated getting trims on my bottom layers and still having it not affect the shortest layer, which was by then the worst. Later, I realized that I could just get my layers freshened up at half the rate of cutting the layers off. If you like your layers, don't cut them off, just get them trimmed. This wasn't an option for me because I was just learning how to cut my own hair and without a job or money to pay someone else to do it.

jivete
April 16th, 2010, 12:44 PM
I think sometimes people mistake the different hair lengths as damage. These are going to be more noticable on the longer length. That combined with layers can make the hair look more damaged than it is.

I would just S&D the splits as you see them on all the layers and slowly cut out the layers. You probably don't wear your hair straight very often, so any damage is going to be less noticable.

naereid
April 16th, 2010, 12:58 PM
GoddesJourney: I don't like them, I want 'em gone. :grnbiggri Thanks for sharing your experience.

jivete: It's probably not as bad as I feel it is, but there's still a lot of white dots strewn across my length. :o It really isn't noticable in my natural texture, at least that's a big plus. I do S&D on the longer layers, but the short ones are too short.

Guess the slow trim route is the way. At least I'll get a blunt hemline.

Sheltie_Momma
April 16th, 2010, 03:34 PM
I don't have any real advice, just empathy! My top layers are the worst because of years of blowfrying with a round brush with knobs on the ends and then flat ironing and then sometimes using the curling iron after that! Hah. Sadly my longest best hair is the bottom layer that is totally hidden under the sad hair. No way will I cut to the shortest layer (which would be BSL) so I'm just in limbo - trying to decide what to do...

Frying Pan Paul
April 16th, 2010, 03:40 PM
When I was growing layers out I got them trimmed to keep the splits away and would trim more off of my length so the layers would catch up. All my hair was getting trimmed but different percentages were getting cut off. I hope that made sense.

Carolyn
April 16th, 2010, 03:49 PM
An extra year in the grow out process is really not that long. I made the mistake of estimating when I thought I would be at waist lenght and it took almost 2 more years than I thought. The thing is not to give up and to try to look at the big picture. S & D as far up as you can. If I were you I'd grow an inch and trim an inch. With every trim you'll be getting a thicker hemline and less damage. Wear your hair wavy to minimize how much the damage shows. Think moisture moisture moisture and protect your hair as much as you can. I'm betting in 6 months you'll see a big difference.

spidermom
April 16th, 2010, 04:03 PM
Ah, that's too bad. I know the feeling. I've been growing my hair out for 10 years now, partly because I've had to cut so much off to get rid of pre-LHC damage. I figure that now all the hair on my head has grown since I joined LHC, and I don't find as much damage on the ends as I used to - not that my hair is perfect, not by any means. It's o.k., though, the years are going to pass whether I'm trimming my hair or not.

hydrangea
April 16th, 2010, 04:12 PM
I've got the same problem, except my hair is not curly. When I have more time I will post a picture. There is a dramatic difference and a DRAMATIC LINE between my healthy hair and my damaged hair. Only shows up when I blow dry.

Capybara
April 16th, 2010, 04:57 PM
I would S&D as much as possible.

Occasionally, I'll find hairs that are split as much as 6 inches up from the hemline of my hair, so I know how you feel (((hugs))) . The only solution I see, though, is trimming and babying your ends (:

hydrangea
April 16th, 2010, 04:59 PM
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/album.php?albumid=3674&pictureid=69607


http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/album.php?albumid=3674&pictureid=69608


Not sure if these images worked...if not, you can see the pics in my album. I think I'm going to grow till BSL then cut off damage as I grow as others have recommended, then grow to waist. Otherwise, I'm sure a lot of that will break off the older it gets (closer to waist I get)...I've been using a coney leave in serum on my ends so that they don't break off as easily. Really reduces the amount of shedding. I think patience is key for this situation, unfortunately. :rolleyes:

TXbarbie
April 16th, 2010, 05:03 PM
Good luck growing out layers - I'm starting that journey as well! In a year or so we'll be back to happy, healthy hair :flowers:

FrannyG
April 16th, 2010, 05:09 PM
Well, you need to get rid of that damage eventually, so if you don't want a big cut, then using the bi-monthly method that you describe will definitely make a difference. Best of luck with it! :blossom:

StephanieB
April 16th, 2010, 07:14 PM
Naereid: I agree with Franny, that you will need to get rid of the damaged hair sooner or later - dead doesn't come back to life, and split ends don't mend themselves (broken is broken)... but you can decide how long you want to prolong the inevitable, if it helps you to not get too discouraged all at once.

I bit the bullet back in February (IIRC) and cut several inches of dead ends off, and was glad for it, ulitmately. But I probably ought to have done the whole job at once - and I still have a couple of inches of ends that will need to come off, sooner or later.

I just hope that I can prevent any further damages (and I keep a close eye on the few splits I've got to make sure they aren't getting longer/going higher up my hair shafts) while I grow it a few more inches longer... my hair grows soooooo darn slooooooooooooowly! If I'm lucky, it grows an eighth to a quarter of an inch monthly.

There's no real "right" or "wrong" choice - it's up to you, naereid. :)

Yozhik
April 16th, 2010, 09:07 PM
If the damage is only really visible when straight (which you don't seem to do that often), I'd try not to dwell on it too much. If it's really bothering you, though, go for the frequent trimmings to try to get rid of the damage faster.

I'm going through this dilemma, too :( I can't decide if I should keep on growing, or cut back my hair to a healthier length. I haven't gotten far at all, though -- right now it's barely at upper BSL (if I stretch the waves) . . . I'm thinking of getting to a mini-goal length that I'm satisfied with (full BSL), then maintaining there and trimming away the damage. Maybe this could work for you, too?

Good luck!

Tressie
April 16th, 2010, 09:37 PM
Are you sure you have real damage, or just the demarcation line of layering? Honestly your hair looks wonderful in the photo you posted! I'm joining in the suggestions to pamper and S&D any splits you see, and if you are bothered by what the stylist pointed out, enlist someone to help snip any splits on the shorter layers for you? That's my plan! (o:

naereid
April 17th, 2010, 01:12 AM
Thank you so much for the advice and support, everyone. :grouphug:

So it's like I thought. The best way to go over this is S&Ds and taking off the bottommost growth regularly until I get to those nasty layers. Sucks, but at least BSL is an okay length. If I went drastically shorter it would just depress me.

I was very upset last night, couldn't even study for my exams. :( But this morning I'm feeling a little more optimistic. Sure, my ends are shorter, but they feel nice and thick instead of wispy, and it'll only get better. I just made my first figure-8 bun and am hoping updos will help keep the damage away a bit. (though I am worried about doing them too tightly and damaging my hair further! oh woe.)

There really are a lot of splits in the shorter layer, it's just hard to photograph due to the shiny magic of flash.

Good luck to everyone who's in the same situation. We can do it! :flower:

Emichiee
April 17th, 2010, 12:58 PM
I think maybe your situation looks worse to you now than it is, due to recently revealed cone damage, layers and well straightening hair with heat can cause a frizzy look.

I think you will have good results with the monthly trim method since your taper at this point is mostly due to layers. And the ends usually feel a bit better after every trim too ;)

Arctic_Mama
April 17th, 2010, 01:20 PM
It depends on what you value - my hair is unmanageable at lengths shorter than bsl, I can't live with it or style it shorter, so I'd rather gain lots of length and then cut back from, say, tb to waist a few times, than cut damage more slowly at shorter lengths. If the damage isn't demonstrably traveling upward I'd wait, but that's me. I've been babying dyed and flatironed ends for two years now with no noticeable increase in damage or splits, so I am in even less hurry to lop them off when length is paramount for me.

It's entirely up to you - if you'd rather have less damage than more length, by all means trim away!

naereid
April 17th, 2010, 01:27 PM
I think maybe your situation looks worse to you now than it is, due to recently revealed cone damage, layers and well straightening hair with heat can cause a frizzy look.

I think you will have good results with the monthly trim method since your taper at this point is mostly due to layers. And the ends usually feel a bit better after every trim too ;)
Emichiee! Glad you saw my thread. I've read your blog post on hemlines at least four times. :grnbiggri Thanks for the vote of confidence.

I always knew that at some point in time I'd have to start maintaining my length in order for the layers to meet the ends, but of course I kept delaying it. It's probably for the best that I decided to do it now so I can finally get it over with.

naereid
April 17th, 2010, 01:38 PM
It depends on what you value - my hair is unmanageable at lengths shorter than bsl, I can't live with it or style it shorter, so I'd rather gain lots of length and then cut back from, say, tb to waist a few times, than cut damage more slowly at shorter lengths. If the damage isn't demonstrably traveling upward I'd wait, but that's me. I've been babying dyed and flatironed ends for two years now with no noticeable increase in damage or splits, so I am in even less hurry to lop them off when length is paramount for me.

It's entirely up to you - if you'd rather have less damage than more length, by all means trim away!
I see what you mean! :) My hair, on the other hand, is manageable at BSL. I'm learning buns and braids; the only thing that's really bothering me about management are the layers that poke out. So by trimming I'll be both growing out layers and getting rid of the damage. It's painful that I won't gain any length during the procedure, but the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

I'm babbling so much in this thread to convince myself I'm doing the right thing! :laugh:

bumblebums
April 17th, 2010, 01:51 PM
It sounds like you are in the same predicament as me... I haven't trimmed since August, and now the last few (layered) inches are looking pretty thin. They are not really damaged--they feel good and I see very few splits--but they still look kinda sad. I decided not to cut, though, because it's easier to deal with the hair when it's longer, even if the ends don't look good enough to wear down.

So I was going to suggest that you do what I've been doing--wear the hair up 100% of the time (during the day). Once the hair is long enough that I won't miss it if I trim an inch, then I'll trim. For now, the ends are safely hidden under a bun.