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Hair Mystery: Snapping Hair

Friday, November 13, 2009

Just recently I found a hair follicle lying around with the tag and all. I picked it up and I wondered what happens to hair when its pulled apart till it snaps?. As thought, as done. I pulled the hair till it snapped and the hair end resembled a asymmetrical angle. It sloped along the shaft till it was thin and tapered off.

Unfortunately, I tried to refer to slides of hair under a microscope but none actually spoke about how healthy or damaged hair should look when broken along the shaft.

In my opinion, the hair snapped with a long end, as though it had been razored badly leaving behind one assymetrical length of hair. I found a slide which showed what bad razoring could do:


Consequently, I begin to wonder, is my hair healthy? Just what should it look like under the microscope?

Split ends occur from hair damage which eventually wears the cuticle down to expose the good stuff on the inside, the results in the hair splitting into two or more strands. These strands are thin and are usually visible.

I haven’t noticed any split ends in my hair.

Initially I thought maybe split ends were caused by some kind of hair breakage which when occuring on a damaged cuticle results in the hair being unable to recover. This inability to recover or heal itself (again my initial hypothesis) meant that the cuticle and what was beneath it split apart.

Either way, this isn’t the case, so why then does the hair appear to be split, or incorrectly razored, when broken along the shaft.

Looking at a slide of  hair which has damage along the shaft:


This condition called Trichorrhexis Nodosa appears as swelling on hairshafts. Breakage occurs leaving the ends frayed (almost brush like). The condition can result from: excessive heat, exposure to hydrogen peroxide, hair dyes, alkalis, mechanical traumatism.

This is listed as a defect which makes the hair break easily. From the pulling I had to apply I don’t think this is the case for my hair.

Thankfully my hair does not appear to have this condition. The hair when broken does not resemble the slide.

I imagine that if I pulled my hair and it resulted in the bursting effect, then I could possibly have some serious hair damage inside the cuticle. But for now it seems inconclusive, and I’m quite happy with that, I’ve searched through the most dire slides and none resemble my hair mystery.

Unfortunately I have found knotted shafts at the nape of my neck. Just one or two though but somehow I feel bummed to think that they exist in my hair.



So I do have knotted shafts, but what should a healthy hair look like when it it pulled apart?

When I pulled apart my hair it snapped with with the ends looking more like this ] [. I’m at the position that that would qualify as a healthy break.

Can you help me solve this?

❤ Kinjee


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