If your ends are damaged — not just dry and crispy, but split or broken — you should get a trim ASAP.

A trim can improve the overall health and appearance of your hair, and make detangling and styling easier. Plus, you’ll likely feel motivated to care for your freshly trimmed ends.

To prevent dryness, and the resulting damage, try the following:

1. Moisturize: On an as-needed basis (usually every 2 to 4 days), apply water and/or a water-based, leave-in conditioner. (A water-based conditioner will have “aqua” listed as the first ingredient!) You don’t need much; just be sure to evenly distribute.

2. Seal: Next, apply a thin layer of oil, butter or a silicone-based serum to seal in the moisture from the water and conditioner.

3. Hide: Still experiencing dry, crunchy ends? Prevent them from drying out by rocking protective styles like buns and pin-ups. If you’re not into the protective-styling thing, try drying your hair in a stretched state (twists, braids, etc.). This method can help your hair hold on to more moisture and retain it.

4. Deep Treat: If you really want to see some length-retention, engage in a hardcore deep-conditioning routine. Make sure your product is moisturizing and extra slippery for added detangling help. Also, always follow up a trim with a deep treatment or the first two steps above.

Remember that, even without heat and color damage, our ends are very delicate; they’re the oldest part of the hair and they’ve been exposed to the wear and tear of styling and the elements. Always be mindful of how you handle your hair today, because you’ll still be feeling the effects of it years from now!

Photo by Ivana Cajina on Unsplash

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