Most of us push open the doors of our favorite barbershop with the intention to barge out of there looking our best grooming-wise, meeting the same old barber we’ve grown accustomed to for the past couple of years, getting the same cut we’ve been rocking for the past couple of months. Seemingly, nothing changes. Yet, even though a sharp style, a trimmed beard, and clean sideburns are more than satisfactory outcomes as a result of visiting the barbershop, we’ve also nurtured healthier hair growth as a by-product of merely freshening up.
Why are regular cuts necessary to maintain the health of your hair?
You see, hair grows from the root, meaning that the tips of your hair have been accompanying you since you had your hair cut last. Depending upon your habits and other factors, the ends of your hair split and grow fray with time, resulting in hair that has no uniformity across its strands. Given you don’t cut such split ends at the earliest, your hair will continue to split all the way up your hair’s shaft, eventually causing hair breakage that can adversely affect how your hair’s volume and texture look and feel.
How can you tell when you’re due for a cut?
Hair ends that have been long due for a cut can be spotted with ease. If you’ve long hair, and your hair is taking longer to de-tangle as of late, chances are the ends of your hair are excessively split. For those of us with shorter hair, confirming the presence of split ends is as simple as straightening some part of your hair using a blow-dryer or an ironer, then taking a close look at the difference between the ends and the middle part of your hair strands. If there’s hardly any uniformity across a single strand, and your hair seems to thin out as it reaches its end, that means it’s highly likely you’ve split ends, and a visit to the barbershop is warranted to steer clear of long-term damage and sustain a healthier growth of hair.
How often does my hair split?
Unfortunately, for most of us, split ends are bound to happen in the long run. Hence, cosmetologists generally recommend trimming your hair’s ends once every 8 – 12 weeks. However, depending on your lifestyle, daily habits, and routines, you may find that your hair requires to be cut on a much shorter interval timeframe to keep its health at an optimum. Believe it or not, your lifestyle and habits could play a big difference in the amount of time your hair ends begin to split and fray. Hence, we recommend you take cosmetologists’ generalized recommendation with a pinch of salt, using it merely as an absolute deadline at which a visit to the barbershop is strictly warranted.
Things that can accelerate the rate at which your hair splits
In case you’re wondering, here are a few things to keep an eye out for if you’d like to evade split ends for as long as possible. Below are the most common reasons your hair may disregard the timeframe professionals have bestowed upon it, deciding to split and fray long before you may be due for a cut.
An Excessive Shampooing Frequency
Most off-the-shelf shampoos are packed with sulfates and other chemically manufactured cleansing agents that are responsible for extracting oil and dirt from your hair. Naturally, such is shampoo’s intention in the first place. Yet an excessive, daily usage of a shampoo that is packed with cleansing agents strips hair of the lipids that hold its fibers together.
Given you exercise shampooing on such a frequency, your scalp will eventually lose its natural oil balance, thereby losing its capability to nurture and grow healthy strands of hair. As such, with the lack to nurture for the growth of moisturized hair, hair strands eventually whither and dry out, becoming twice or thrice as likely to break and split.
Certain Types of Hair Products & Regular Dyeing
Using shampoos and hair products that are highly alkaline in accordance with the pH scale can also play a part in accelerating the rate at which hair ends split and break. Such alkaline products cause individual hair strands to adopt a negative charge, making them more prone to friction-related breakage when rubbed against pillowcases, hats, and scarves. Also, the habitual use of harsh chemicals which are inclusive of oxygen-bleach and certain types of dyes is not only a major cause of split ends but also a cause for weaker hair fibers in general over the long haul.
The Application of Heat to Style Hair
Blow-drying hair or subjecting it to extreme levels of heat through ironers and hair straighteners without using a heat protectant is also a recipe for broken and damaged hair. Naturally, heat extracts moisture from hair strands. As such, the more you blow-dry and straighten your hair using heat, the higher the chances you’re contributing to your hair’s own demise. That being said, styling with heat is not completely off the table. If your hair is naturally dry, yet you dabble in heat-induced hairstyles, heat protectants go a long way to insure you keep your hair’s health in check while styling up.
Will hair growth speed up if split ends are cut off?
Given we’ve given much dismay to the reputation of split ends. You’d expect an obvious yes to this question. But, split ends do not cause hair to stop growing. They merely overshadow your hair’s potential to grow to its best shape and texture. Hair splits are often the cause of tangles, hair frizz, and broken follicles. Combined, these effects translate into distorted, harder-to-maintain hair that lacks uniformity and texture.
A better question would be: Will cutting off split ends nurture a healthier growth of hair?
Most definitely. If you consistently snip split ends when they are due for a cut, you wouldn’t have to go ballistic and cut off as much as you would if you were to go several months without a cut. When trying to grow a man-bun, for example, you are advised by your barber to come in for a slight trim every couple of weeks or so, taking one step backward to tread two steps forward.
What will happen if I don’t cut split ends?
Now, if you decide to tread the path less traveled by growing a man-bun while completely disregarding the existence of split ends, rest assured you’d be in for one bumpy hair growth journey. In fact, rushing the process and saving out on those couple of inches that would have been cut off may solely be the reason you’ll grow to condemn your long hair in the not-so-distant future.
Why? Well, Depending upon how long you grew your hair to be, one-third, a quarter, or even half a quarter of your hair strands are now broken and split. With such a mind-boggling percentage, you’re in for a treat when it comes to tangles and unorderly strands that take you 20 minutes to straighten out after a shower. Along with the maintenance aspect of things, your hair strands now significantly lack uniformity in texture, frizzing out and displaying major signs of hair damage. Nothing like the hairstyle you initially had in mind, huh?
Well, in case the worst happens, you’d probably not be satisfied with such outcomes, and your next move will probably involve a visit to your neighborly barbershop to mitigate the damage done. What was your mistake? You rushed 5 steps forward into your hair growth journey only to pull a sharp U-turn and take those same steps back the way you came from.
When it comes to nurturing healthy growth of hair, patience is key. And adopting the one-step backward, two-steps forward mentality is essential to avoid such unpleasant outcomes, especially when trying to grow long strands of hair.
You see, while haircuts are the bread and butter of men’s grooming, they are hardly ever telling the full story. To be precise, haircuts are the foundation upon which the quality of your future hairstyles rests. Quality in texture and health, that is. As for your future hairstyle’s quality in style, we needn’t explain the directions to our lounge.