How To Achieve Healthy Hair Ends

Have you ever looked in the mirror and despaired at the way your hair end looks, some are shorter than some and the whole bunch of it is just ragged. How did it get that way and why did you let it? Better yet, you ask yourself, does my hair look good with all these straggly ends? The truth is, there are straggly hair ends, which may look good after a little TLC and then there is chewed up looking ends which just looks like you are desperate for hair length. My hair was in the chewed up category last month. I had to cut off three inches of it. There comes a time when you just have to say goodbye to dry looking ends. The ironic bit about my hair ends is that when I cut them off my hair looked much better.

How does the hair end, which is the oldest art of the hair get to look so ugly after a while?

Reasons For Unhealthy Hair Ends:

1. Age

It is the norm for the oldest part of your hair to look a little worse for wear after a time. The longer your hair becomes the thinner the ends will seem, some of the hair ends you are looking at, especially for ladies with very long hair can be three to five years old, they are very far from their younger, fresher days near the hair root.

2. Heat Use

In previous articles, it is stressed that heat is not such a good thing for your hair directly as it damages the cuticle layers of your hair and prevents the hair from absorbing and retaining moisture. Your hair ends are at even greater risk of heat damage because it is usually the driest part of the hair. Have you ever noticed that after using a curling or flat iron your ends feel extremely brittle? The heat just sucks up the moisture. Lack of moisture equals breakage and wreaks havoc on your ends.

3. Chemical Damage

Your ends are to be protected from chemical damage when relaxing hair even if the relaxer is not placed directly on them. Why? Because when the relaxer is washed out of the hair your delicate ends are given a touch up. So while the hairdresser may pay attention to your newly relaxed hair and gives it the TLC it deserves, your hair ends will absorb some chemicals if not protected and this makes them drier. To counteract this reaction, oil your processed hair before getting a retouch from the demarcation line to the ends or add some deep conditioner especially to your ends before relaxing the hair.

4. Rubbing

Your hair ends are very easy to be roughed up by the rubbing action of certain materials like cotton or wool. Whenever your ends are out and they rub against these materials it is quite likely that you will rub off all the moisture from this part of the hair. These materials are bad news for your ends because they rough up the hair cuticle, which can lead to breakage. So even though you may like wearing your hair down, choose carefully the days when you do this and the outfit you may be wearing.

5. Combing

The issue with the ends of the hair and combing is that sometimes we comb the hair the wrong way and get tangles at the ends and end up yanking on them. The best way to comb hair is to start at the ends (with your big tooth comb) and then work up the length of your hair strand to the root. In other words, don’t leave all the knotted part of the hair for the ends. Use a detangler or a moisturizing leave in conditioner when combing out tangled hair for best results.

6. Lack of Moisture

Everything comes back to moisture for black hair and this is especially so for your ends. If the ends are dry they will get brittle and break. If your hair ends are dry, moisturize them daily and moisturize them first. Be generous with the moisture on your ends whether you are using a deep conditioner or a leave-in conditioner or an ordinary water based moisturizer, give your ends special moisturizing care. Remember to seal in the moisture when you are done with a carrier oil. If you want to preserve a certain hair style (say a curly one) it is easy to redo it when your ends are slightly damp and moisturized.

How To Achieve Healthy Hair Ends

1. Trim It!

If the hair is damaged or terribly thinned out or just looks ugly- trim it. You can do it in one setting or gradually. Combing through bluntly trimmed hair ends is much easier than combing through uneven layers of straggly hair because each hair moves freely and there are less tangles. Trim it yourself if you do not trust anyone else in your hair and you can control the length that you trim off.

2. Protect the Ends

There are several protective styles that can protect the ends of the hair; you may have to wear these more frequently rather than letting your hair out especially in adverse weather conditions such as sun or winter conditions.

3.  Avoid Heat

Heat will fry the ends of the hair so avoid direct heat on your hair ends. The overhead dryer is a better option than using a blow dryer or a flat iron.

4. Baggy It

To get your hair ends super moisturized, pull it back in a loose ponytail, bundle your ends together and moisturize your hair thoroughly and then put a plastic bag on the ends. Leave on for an hour or more or even overnight and then seal with an oil.

5. Protect Your Ends From Chemical Processes

The more often you relax your hair, the greater the likelihood that your ends will be given a touch up, protect them before going into a chemical treatment. You can coat your ends with conditioner or petroleum.


  • Julie said:

    Interesting articles. Is there a way i can subscribe?

  • Brittany said:

    Hi Brenda,
    Do you think your hair could break in braids if you braid it after doing a 4 month stretch and leaving the braids in for 2 months or you think i should relax it a week before i get the braids?

    • Brenda Barrett said:

      Hi Brittany
      I don’t think your hair will break while in braids because you are not handling it at all even after a four month stretch. I would not relax before braids. You can put in the braids, give your hair two weeks after you take them out and then relax it.

  • Veronica said:

    Hi. I wear a protextive style everyday nd put leave in conditioner and oil on my ends twice a day. Why are the ends still breaking off? I never use heat or have my hair down .Is there anything I can do?

    • Brenda Barrett said:

      Hi Veronica,
      What type of leave in conditioner do you use and what type of oil? And what type of protective style? Maybe you should reconsider using the products on your hair ends everyday and use them occasionally instead? You will have to isolate all the things you are doing to find out what is causing your hair ends to break.

  • C Chappell said:

    My daughter had a texturized for 3 years done by me at home.. I took her to a hairstylist. Request and ask hair stylist for a texturizer. New stylist advise after doing her hair she place perm. My daughter hair has shed and is now very short. It was down her back and very thick. Now not even touching her shoulder. Is it possible to go back to me texturing hair at home. She has now had three perms from hairstylist in the past 4months

  • Ashanti said:

    Hi Brenda,
    I’m 15 years old, and being going natural. But, I moisturize and seal my ends every night I go to bed. One thing I noticed when I detangle my hair is that I see a lot of hair breakage here’s what I do: First I spray water on my hair then, I section my hair of into 8 sections then I use my Garnier Fructis leave inn conditioner. To seal my ends I use the Garnier Fructis marvelous ends.My question is why does my hair keep breaking off? How do I prevent breakage so my hair can grow?

  • DORA said:

    About six weeks ago my hair started breaking and shedding after applying coconut oil. It became very dry. I have many products to stop the breaking and shedding. (Alphogee protein treatment etc. However, this has not stopped the hair loss complete. I need HELP!!!

  • Sabis said:


    Can you recommend a good that is not strong in perfume scent. Looking forward to your response.

  • Imari said:

    Hello! Is it okay if i use heat protectant spray such as Tresemmé Thermal Creations? Its a Heat Tame Leave in spray. It protects heat up to 450°F. Which i dont even use heat close to that. I have relaxed hair. Will it be okay? (:

  • Peace said:

    Hi brenda
    My hair is long but very dry and light. It doesn’t have
    Weight. I have tried all kinds of treatment but still the same. But how can I style my hair without using drier or combing it. Thanks

  • yaniri said:

    I usually straighten my hair once a week with rollers and a blow dryer. I was thinking to alternating the weeks i straighten my hair. So I only put heat about 2x a month. Have you ever tried something like this? Do you think it would be effective?

  • Nonkuthalo said:

    Hi Brenda

    For the past few months i have had my hair all natural not relaxed at all,it was breaking but was not visible up until i relaxed and used a dye on it. i lost my hair after that and have since lost it up until; now,plus is it true that black african relaxed hair does not grow long?

  • Sika said:

    I just started to perm my hair, i want it to grow long since it’s just at my neck, what should i do?

  • Roz said:

    My hair has been in braids for six months. I just relaxed it but ends are dry. Someone told me to try coconut oil. Is it good, and how do I use it?

Add your comment

You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.