View Full Version : Gack, white dots/advice on breakage.

April 21st, 2010, 06:23 PM
I just recently held my hair up to the light, and I noticed that virtually all the ends are white dots or split, just like they were when I highlighted/blowfried it. Most of them seem broken and damaged when I feel the ends carefully, though I never noticed that before since the length is very soft.

What the heck?

I don't dye my hair with anything but henna glosses(which do give me a deep red on my porous hair.), I use a lot of conditioner, I'm very gentle with my shampoo bars(which did reduce splits for a while. SLS and SLS free regular detergents cause instant breakage.) and my hair is barely shoulder length. About 1/2 of it has been growing, the rest has just left awkward layers due to damage. It hasn't grown in about a month, but I figured the growth just wasn't noticeable(well the roots grew, but the length didn't. The roots grew almost 2 inches!) It's been about 4 months since my last cut, but I normally go very rarely.

Looking further at my hair, the breakage continues all the way up to the scalp and makes my hair a lot thinner in the ponytail. It's still a thick III, so I shouldn't be complaining, but it's still pretty broken. It's probably around 50% breakage, as opposed to the 75-90% that I had before(when it was still an ii/iii.). I do have crazy thick hair, so I'm not always as gentle with detangling as I could be, but I do keep conditioner in it while I detangle.

Could the henna be causing damage? I wear my hair up in a ponytail as possible(using bobby pins to hold it up.), detangle very carefully, only brush as needed, oil as much as I can(my hair is currently very greasy), and wear it in a cotton or satin scarf when I sleep.

I use a body shop wooden comb, a body shop wooden brush, a wide toothed random plastic comb in the shower, and a boar bristle brush otherwise. I use the scrunchies that don't even have the little glue seam. My bobby pins are a little rough, but not too bad.

Also, my mother thinks my hair looks horribly damaged and frizzy due to the coarse hairs coming in. :( Not meaning to sound ranty, but she went on a long tirade about how I should bleach my hair back to it's "natural color" (which she thinks is Marilyn Monroe blond. Even when I had my hair it's natural color, she thought it was dyed darker. My hair is a pretty light blonde naturally, and was never as light as she thinks it is.) and I tried to explain that that's not possible with henna, and she basically told me I had to get a pixie, because otherwise all my hair will fall out. She used to be a bit more supportive, but she's under a lot of stress right now, and understandably is a bit off. But, I didn't even ask for her advice on my hair, and her comment was what inspired me to look in the light for my hair texture.

***/ end vent***

I am almost wondering if I should just go back to a pixie and keep it cut often so I don't have to deal with the damage. It seems like no matter what I do, my hair breaks horribly and refuses to grow in the front. Bangs look horrid on me, so they are not an option. The coarse hairs are really bothering me, because they are really dark and it just doesn't match my old hair color. One of my best guy friends, upon seeing my roots, asked me why I used to bleach my hair blond and said he was sorry I was graying so young... He's not the sort of guy to make weird comments, but he thought my hair was naturally black looking at the roots and that I had gray hairs mixed in it. All of the coarse hairs are VERY wavy, and I don't know how to deal with coarse wavy hair, while still keeping the treatment gentle enough for fine hairs.

Strangly enough, the hair in the back is fine, and did grow this month. I treat them the same as the rest of the hair on my head, but they are mainly coarse hairs at this point. Sorry about the length/ranty mood, it's just this is really annoying me. I thought I was getting somewhere with my hair with finally being able to put it in a pony tail, getting out of the triangle danger zone, but this is just... Ack.

Maybe I should wait a few months, get a few inches trimmed off the ends and continue going for trims? I just don't want to have damaged looking hair, and my hair does look fried for me.

April 21st, 2010, 07:25 PM
Maybe you should try taking off a couple cm and doing major moisture treatments. Are you using any kind of heat styling? And yes i would stop all colour for a while and see if it helps

April 21st, 2010, 07:40 PM
Good point on the few CM off. I might try that, I just worry my scissors are too dull, and it's all over the hair length... I might ask my stylist if she can do something.

I don't do any heat styling, but there might be a cm or two in front from when I used to. I did blowdry my hair maybe 3 times over the winter, on low, because it was just so cold out. I'm not surprised if that caused this damage, but it's still annoying.

I will try stopping color, it just seems odd for henna to act like this. Oh well.

April 21st, 2010, 08:01 PM
When did you start with LHC hair-care methods? Keep in mind you probably only have 1/2" or less (depending on growth rate) of healthy hair from each month of growth since you stopped bleaching and frying. And that healthy hair doesn't grow in all at once, making the progress appear to be even slower.

I'm really struggling with breakage too, it sucks.

I don't think you should cut it all off! Be patient. There are a lot of amazing success stories here on LHC, but sometimes it takes years to get real results.

April 22nd, 2010, 12:10 PM
rhubarbarin-It should theoretically be all virgin based on roots growth, and trims. However, it wasn't trimmed up above the damage probably in the front(since it would have had to be a buzz cut for that to have happened!) in any of the haircuts I've gotten. I've been on LHC for almost a year, and my hair grows(based on roots and overall length) a good inch or more per month. I hope I don't need to get it all cut off. Thankfully, it's just the ends that feel horrid. I'll be microtrimming soon, and hopefully that will help. The length still feels fine, except for the ends that are shorter throughout it.

April 22nd, 2010, 12:20 PM
Ponytail holders are not the gentlest becuase you have to bend the hair, pull it through and stretch the bands. Try switching to a plain ribbon or a bunjii.

That plastic shower comb may need inspecting and replacing.

Your overall routine sounds good but patience and hair-love are in order. It's hard to take people commenting on your hair so either tune 'em out or ask how they'd like it if you said things about their hair.

I support your journey.

-Best from NYC!

April 22nd, 2010, 01:23 PM
I might try a ribbon, especially as it gets longer! Thanks. There's a lot of breakage where the ends sorta get twisted into the ponytail holder. The comb seems fine, but I might have to look into a seamless one. I do only use it with conditioner, so... I don't know if that's the cause.

April 22nd, 2010, 01:39 PM
Those dreaded white dots. Just the other day I saw a little bump on one of my hairs, I tugged at it and it snapped off.....it was about 5 inches long!!! I think this breakage though is due to how I treated my hair in the past (perms/excessive blow frying etc).
However I've noticed less overall breakage on my hair because of a change in my routine (I use little/no blow drying, wash my hair once a week concentrating on my scalp/using non-sls shampoo , S&D, sleep with braids, oil my ends every night, use lots of conditioner or hair mask once a week). One thing that has really helped with the breakage(my hair feels and looks stronger) is: COCONUT OIL!
Try doing some super moisturizing treatments (or protein?) and if you still notice the breakage, you could trim just a couple of centimeters.Good luck!

April 22nd, 2010, 01:49 PM
I've only found one solution to this: avoid looking at your ends. Oh, and get regular trims so that it at least looks well-cared-for from arm's length away. That's how most people see you, so if you're good to go from that distance, call it good.

I have problems like that. As careful as I've been with my hair, I can find white dots and splits any time I look. I've just about trained myself not to look.