View Full Version : Tell me not to chop it..

September 8th, 2010, 11:26 PM
Hey all, this is my first post, but I've been lurking for a few weeks now...

I have thin, fine hair. I've been growing out some pretty crazy damage for two years now. My hair is currently about four inches away from my goal -waist length. However, the bottom three inches of my ends are so terribly dry and unmanageable. They look terrible. When I trim the spilts, they just split again within a week (my scissors could not be sharper). More than anything, they're 'sticky' and get tangled easily. They are crunchy and vile. (I want to note that I know that these horrible ends DO still have some cuticle, and the core is not totally exposed).

The rest of my hair is quite nice, soft and very shiny. I only wash in a cone-free conditioner, and I only put oil in my hair (EVOO, EVCO, and sometimes castor oil). I comb it with a good comb, use a boar bristle brush, etc etc.

I want so badly to save those last three inches. I only get about four inches a year, and if I cut off the horrible stuff, plus a safety 1/2 inch (if I'm chopping it, why not ere on the safe side?)... well, that means I'll have seven inches to go to my goal, which is roughly two years worth of growth...

I don't know what to do. My boyfriend loves that I'm growing it out, and wants it long, and is basically blind to the dead stuff, and even he told me to just cut the ends because of how stressed I am about it...

I feel like I've tried everything to save them, but no matter how hard I work, they show little or no improvement. But... If I cut.. I will be so sad to lose the length.

Please help....

September 8th, 2010, 11:29 PM
I would love to see a picture, if possible. Then I can really give my full opinion. :)

September 8th, 2010, 11:34 PM
I agree a pic would be good

Have you tried clarifying? Funky ends can be caused by buildup. Clarifying could let your hidden healthier hair free :D

September 8th, 2010, 11:38 PM
I second seeing a picture.

Are you looking for a blunt hemline? If you don't mind layers, you can always trim up layers to cut the damage without losing too much length. That's what I've done. I cut it myself using the ponytail method and it looks great.

September 8th, 2010, 11:38 PM
Don't chop it! especially with bad scissors. At least wait till you have good scissors and only take an inch. When I think i have 3 inches of velcro I usually only have one inch of velcro and the rest is just along for the ride.

September 8th, 2010, 11:41 PM
I can't post a picture from where I am now, but I will upload one when I get a chance.

I have not tried clarifying, because I'm afraid to cause more damage? Should I try that? What would be a good clarifying shampoo choice?

September 8th, 2010, 11:43 PM
also, my scissors are very good. Two months ago I committed to trimning 1/4 an inch once a month, but like I said, it just instantly spilts...

September 8th, 2010, 11:59 PM
I know how you feel! I trimmed about four inches last week because I couldn't stand the damage, & while my hair is so much healthier now & still feel the pain of what I lost..

Here's what helped me though.. I used Bed Heads Dumb Blonde deep conditioner.
I'd just leave it in for a long time, like a mask, then wash it out. But only use it on the ends because it can make your hair very greasy. That sort of saved it a little bit. Panteen pro-v also has a Deep Fortifying treatment that you can use in the same way. I like that stuff A LOT. I use it like a regular conditioner.

After I messed with those products, my hair was a lot nicer & not as 'sticky' or tangly. Is that a word? Now it is. & I think that before I moved onto other products those helped a lot.

After that I started using this spray & oils.. I'll get to those in a second. But first, I just wanna say.. if you don't feel like spending money & buying those conditioners, you can just start at this step.
Also if you only want to get one of them, that the panteen one is cheaper by miles.
& lastly, if you don't want to get either, then just to an EVOO treatment, wrap your head in a microfiber turban or something like that I sleep on it. Olive oil always helps. A lot of times I just oil up, wrap my head in a plastic bag, tie the ends. & squish the bag so all the air comes out. Kind of like a ghetto shower cap. Then wrap a towel around that, & hang out..

So after you've been deep conditioning for a bit, or in addition to it there's a spray I really like that completely made a difference in my hair. Sometimes I wouldn't condition, when my hair was getting super weighed down & greasy, & I would just use this spray & it would to wonders without weighing my hair down AT ALL. You can't even feel it in your hair. (Even if you use a ton of it, like I do.)

Anyway, the spray is by Citre Shine & it's called Citrus & Argan Oil Express RepairLong Hair Strengthener. The bottle says stuff like.. Hair that's at or over 10" long is at least two years old.. & then says that it can repair three years of damage in two weeks. & granted, while it's not going to make your hair look spanking brand new like you just trimmed it! It will help to hide the split ends & make hair more manageable. I'd spray that on, add my favorite oils into my hair (I'll get to those later too), & then let it air dry. In the morning, I'd swirl my hair into a bun & keep it there all day, & when it comes out after work, it's a lot tamer, & the ends don't even look all scraggly. I also use their Citrus & Yogurt Protein Ionic Shield Serum, which is suppose to be for if you're going to straight iron your hair right after, but since I don't really do that, I just like it to protect from weather damage & pollution, etc. You also can't feel that in your hair, & it just keeps things nice & smooth. It kind of helps with the styling later too, I feel like it makes my waves look nice & shiny when I take out my bun.

So we deep condition or olive oil our hair. Spray it with the express repair stuff & maybe the heat serum if you're feeling up to it & it's time for the oil.. The last thing I'll put on my hair (& I do all of this while my hair is still damp after a shower) is an oil with keratin protein in it to help repair damage.

Also, do you put any product in your hair on a normal day, like before you style it or whatever?
Because using a simple oil, like something from Orofluido, can do wonders in making your hair look less damaged while you wear it down. While Orofluido is meant more for softening the hair & making it shiny, & doesn't have the restorative properties of keratin oils, it does to a very very nice job of making it look like you don't have split ends. Well both of these oils to. But Oro is a nice "finishing touch". The scent is strong when you first apply it, but it quickly fades & doesn't stay on your hair. Damaged ends should never go 'naked'.

I did all of these things, conditioned, repair spray for a month, oils, wearing oil in hair on a regular basis.. & it got to the point where I just felt like I couldn't take it & needed a trim. But after all of this treatment, I didn't really need to. I had turned the clock back just a bit.

So the spray & oils are a must. Deep conditioning is always great. & if you have any questions just let me know.

Also, have you thought about wearing deep conditioner, like a hair mask, in your hair while it's up? There are some hair styles that you can do where you use conditioner like a gel & pull your hair into a cute side bun. We used to do it after the beach, then go out to eat. It gets frizzy beach hair out of the way, into a cute hair style, & you can condition while you do other things! Sometimes I do it at school or work. No one even notices. There's even a guy on youtube that has a video on how to do it. Just another reason why I love Johnny Lavoy.. Just search on youtube for: "How to: Style with deep conditioner"

I hope I could help at least a little! Good luck!!!

September 9th, 2010, 12:11 AM
Thank you so much for your complete post, Jolie!

I work overnights (I'm at work now) alone, and the go to sleep right after work. I actually wet my hair and put about a tablespoon of oil in it right before work, meaning my hair is kind of getting deep conditioned for 16 hours every day.

Honestly, that's why I feel like I'm going to have to cut it... I feel like if that much isn't helping, then... it can't be helped.

I damaged it by literally not getting a single trim for 5 years, blow drying it every day for two years without using ANY kind of product at all. I used sulphate shampoos daily, and followed those with coney shampoos. Maybe worst of all, I RIPPPPPED through it with a terrible brush, not just before and after showering, but all the time - I ripped through my hair with a brush as often as some people bite their nails. It was just a terrible, terrible habit of mine.

So, considering THAT is what I'm growing out...

I think I might just do it. I doooooooooooooooooooooooooon't want to, though...

Haha, sorry, this must be impossible to read ^_^

September 9th, 2010, 01:07 PM
Nope, clarifying wont damage your hair. It is best to follow with a deep conditioning though to help with any dryness that may occur.
What you could be feeling on your ends could simply be build-up. Its best to get rid of this now before you try and put new oils and sprays on your hair... because if its build-up those oils and sprays could just sit on the top of your hair and thats not going to make your hair feel any nicer. Hmmmm, I do wonder though since your using SLS shampoos dialy.

Anyways, I don’t use SLS when I’m typically cleaning my hair so I use a SLS based shampoo or a shampoo bar that cleans really well when I want to clarify. There will be heaps of information on different clarifying options if you do a search :D

Maybe a dusting, not a cut, could help.

I just did a quick search for "crunchy ends" theres some more info in these that you might find helpful



September 9th, 2010, 02:14 PM
When I feel like this I usually just cut the ends. It is amazing how much difference this can make!!!

It also satisifies the 'cutting urge' LOL :P

September 9th, 2010, 02:20 PM
I'll tell you this straight up. If your last few inches are as damaged as you say they are, your hair may just start breaking off faster than it grows, and you might find that it appears that your hair is not growing.

My daughter went a couple of years without a trim, got to waist length, but one year later, her hair, still without a trim, was exactly the same length.

She bit the bullet and cut off those last few inches, and her hair was back to waist length with no damage before we knew it.

She had thought that she had slow growing hair, but in fact, it was damage hair breaking off that made it seem like her hair was slow growing.

So my advice is first clarify your hair and do some of deep moisture treatments for a week or two.

If you still have velcro ends after several moisture treatments, then I really do suggest that you cut that hair off now, and it may save you an even bigger cut down the line.

Now I know that it's heart-breaking to lose length--I've been there--but damage simply doesn't go away.

September 9th, 2010, 02:57 PM
I agree with FrannyG completely. I've tried to hold onto bad ends in the past, but as soon as I cut them off, I found out that my hair grew a lot faster than I thought.

September 9th, 2010, 03:08 PM
I am in the same boat as you. My ends are terribly thin and like velcro sometimes. I find that shea butter and coconut oil over some water on the last four inches helps with them being crunchy.

My hair is also waist length, fine and thin. I cannot feel any weight when I put it up in a bun and there are honestly days where I feel like cutting it too. I remedy that by putting my hair in braids since my braids have a little substance.

I recommend doing little 1/2 inch trims every six months or so. The hair will likely get healthy and the health will grow down so that the splits will not happen so much. When my ends feel sticky and like velcro, after the 1/2 inch trim they feel much better:)

September 9th, 2010, 03:10 PM
I second dusting/trimming. I think it's the best way to keep ends nice, gradually loose the damage, and still keep the length. Or do an inch at a time, one big chop might be a shock or a big regret.

September 9th, 2010, 03:23 PM
Definitely clarify your hair, before making any decisions. Clarifying might be damaging if you did it every day for years, but if your ends are sticky and vile, chances are that it'll do a lot of good. (Sticky crunchy ends seem to damage themselves, after all!) VO5 Kiwi Lime Squeeze is a nice clarifying shampoo.

After clarifying, but before you reach for the conditioner, give the ends a feel. If they're mushy, like wet paper, it may mean that you need to shop around for a protein treatment in the coming days. After checking out the ends, slather on some good moisturizing conditioner and let it marinate a bit before rinsing. (I'm a fan of the SMT (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=128) for moisture.)

Hopefully, everything will feel loads better after that...

Finally, if you're not wearing your hair up, you might want to start. Tucking the ends into a bun is a good way to protect them from all the day-to-day wear that's probably contributing to them re-splitting so quickly.

September 9th, 2010, 04:56 PM
I agree with those who say you probably need to cut off the bad inches. It will grow in more quickly than you think once the damaged parts are gone and the breaking stops.

September 9th, 2010, 05:17 PM
use suave clariflying shampoo and shampoo the whole lengh then use a deep conditioner(i use the mask kind) that you added some honey and e oil and coconut oil to. leave on the mask for like 10 minutes (i hate the feeling of my hair with conditioner in it) then rinse. i co-wash 1 or 2 times a week and do this about every 1 to 2 months.but my hair is med. think so i dont know if this will work for your hair but its worth a try!

September 9th, 2010, 05:21 PM
^^^also u need to trim the ends! i had build up and spilt ends so i cut a few inches off and did that^^ and it made the difference! my hair feels alot fuller and thicker and healtier

September 9th, 2010, 05:25 PM
I am another pro cutter if the damage is that bad. The length you get with the damage isn't worth risking more damage later.......... and it may get worse. Sorry :(

September 9th, 2010, 05:34 PM
If clarifying helps, but your ends are still extremely delicate, I'd try using silicones on just those last 4 inches. I don't like silicones, but they can protect hair. Just be sure to first apply oils and non-cone conditioners etc. prior to the silicone conditioner, to hopefully 'seal' them in.

If after trying the above for a few weeks, your ends are still bad, then I would consider cutting them.

September 9th, 2010, 11:27 PM
Thank you all soooo much for all the great advice!

I went home and clarified my hair. Just like many of you said it would, this made a big difference!

However, I kept standing in front of the mirror, pining away in my indecision, and then...

I got out my scissors. I cut about an 3/4-1 inch off the bottoms, and 1-1/2 off the layers around my face. These needed it worse, as I have been putting off trimming these big time in hopes they would grow out to the same length as the rest of my hair sooner.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE! Thank you all so, so much. As I'm typing this, I realize that I forgot to take pictures before hand... sorry for that!

But, really, I feel so much better about my hair now. Obviously there is still damage, but even though I can feel it, it's not nearly as /visible/ anymore. My hair looks and feels thicker, which is so nice, and I think that getting rid of quite a bit of fried hair around my face helps the overall look a lot.

Really, thank you all so much.. I knew that if I talked to my rl friends about this, they would have told me 'you have to cut it to make it grow' and chopped off four inches. And how sad I would have been...

Thanks again!!

September 10th, 2010, 01:34 AM
You said you are going cone -free. I initially had no splits and my hair was ok, I went cone-free and ended up with lots of splits 6 months later. What about going back to cones whilst you are growing out the damaged ends. The silicone will provide some slip and a coating to your hair and hopefully will slow down your splits. Yes it's covering up the damage, but isn't that what you need right now? There is no shame in going back to cones when you have been completely cone free. I personally alternate and clarify once in a while if my hair become unruly or if I lose my wave (which happens when I use heavy silicones).

Grow to your goal (only a couple of months now) and then slowly trim the damage away every 6 weeks until it's all gone. At waist length you will be able to do it yourself.