How to Prevent and Treat Split Ends
A hairstylist shares her best pieces of advice.
Leave it to split ends to ruin a hairstyle. Unfortunately, they're a common part of the hair cycle, and they are typically caused by over-processing or coloring, chemical treatments, hot styling tools, or dryness. To help you treat the split ends you already have—and prevent them down the line—we tapped Yasuna Hishono, a senior stylist at Benjamin West Hollywood. Here, she shares some of her best tips for combatting this hair nuisance.
Get regular trims.
Unfortunately, the only real way to eliminate split ends is to cut them off. Hishono recommends pre-booking appointments with your stylist for trims every four to six weeks to maintain shape and reduce damage. "To prevent split ends, it's always a good idea to make sure you get in for your trims," she says. "And don't wait too long!" If you're noticing knots when you brush your hair or find yourself picking at your split ends, you should already be in your stylist's chair.
Use a detangling product.
To avoid creating damage while brushing, try using a detangling treatment, notes Hishono—and a brush or comb meant for detangling, for that matter. Whether you go for a metal bristled brush or one with plastic bristles, a tool designed to combat snags or knots will help you glide through your unruly hair without breaking it.
Do you rely on your blow dryer, curling iron, or flat iron when styling your hair? If so, you should consider reducing your heat schedule to prevent split ends from cropping up. Alternatively, lower the heat settings on your tools. But know that it really pays to air dry your hair, as opposed to towel- or heat-drying, which can cause damage.
Try a deep conditioning treatment.
To prevent split ends, you want to keep your hair as moisturized as possible. To do so, use a weekly hair mask to condition your hair and reduce frizz. Some masks will be left on your hair for 20 minutes or so, while others can be applied overnight. "One of my favorite products to treat split ends is Iles Formula's Haute Performance Hair Mask ($69, net-a-porter.com)," Hishono says. "It's a nice way to keep your hair moisturized every day." Beyond scooping up a hair mask from your favorite brand, try heading to the salon for a deep conditioning treatment—or making your own mask with ingredients you already have at home, like coconut oil, olive oil, and bananas.