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Hair Update: Strand Inspection

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

     As well as I have managed my blog in the past few weeks is as well as I have managed my hair for the past few weeks.

Ultimately I’ve done my hair (and blog) a disservice.

     What’s so aggravating is that my reduction in hair care quality will have a lasting impact on what I have to do with my hair tomorrow.

     Sadly, earlier this week I discovered a split end on a strand of hair I had casually played around with and pulled out (not to worry it had its tag so I’m all good there). If you saw my last candid from the club you would see my hair was/ is in a mohawk, currently one side sits half opened as I undid it so that I could get some strands to inspect.

Following the inspection I found five distinct strand types the healthy ends, split ends, the taper, the incomplete split and the knot.

     The healthy strands were a blessing honestly but I am very concerned that of ten strands I found maybe three which were absolutely, without a doubt healthy. because I’m doing the hair inspection with just the magnification of my eyes I couldn’t be sure that what I thought was tapering or a really short split end was not just a regular healthy strand. In any case if I had a slight doubt I quickly assigned it to one of the Oh- crap! piles.

     For the most part my biggest problem were the baby split ends, about four out of ten were baby split ends. These split ends were maybe one centimeter long which is actually less than an eighth of an inch long. Part of me breathes a sigh of relief that this is within the boundaries of a typical hair trim but I’m still unhappy that I have this emergency.

     Alarmingly I spotted one, of let’s say twenty strands, which had an incomplete split end. Now incomplete split ends are little terrors, one small consolation was that they occurred towards the end of a strand so I didn’t have to deal with the issue of strands destroyed before they’ve even really been brought into the atmosphere. The term attributed to these incomplete splits is trichorrhexis nodosa (pictured below).

     The problem with TN is that if you don’t trim high enough you end up with actual split ends or strands with rush like edges. Due to the appearance of TN I am going to have to forgo dying my hair red :(.

     When it comes to the tapered strands I am at a lost as to whether these come before split ends or after.  Tapered strands made up the other majority leading the way with about on average four strands per every ten. Easily snippable but problematic because if they are occurring so prevalently then I’m really not doing what I should be doing with my hair. My solution is to forgo the flat ironing of my hair that I have been planning to do as part of stage four of mohawk. As well, I probably didn’t do myself a service the first time I flat ironed my hair because I used glycerin as part of my preparation for the heat and as it turns out glycerin is not at all good for the heat treatment of hair. Additionally glycerin may have not been any good for my on certain days of this past winter (see above link as well). But ignorance was bliss, now knowledge is power and I will be making corrections to my hair regimen accordingly.

     Now knots were an already known issue so I was actually happy that of ten strands  I had on average maybe about two strands with knots towards the end of the strand. As a person with kinky hair with Ls and Zs and S’s which convolute so much my hair becomes a third of what it actually is in length,I count knots as naturally occurring phenomenon for any kinky girl’s hair strand lifetime.

One major thing to note is that every single strand inspected had a root!

Thanky for small mercies…

To hair inspection,

3 Comments leave one →
  1. happilynappy permalink
    Thursday, December 23, 2010 10:26 PM

    i am really glad this info was available because ow that know what split ends actually look like i found that i always get the split and knot and the offshoot but i got my ends cut and i am going to take care of them

  2. courtney permalink
    Sunday, March 14, 2010 6:49 PM

    Wow I am so glad I found this article! I mean this is certainly a very unfortunate situation but I thought that I was alone in I have never seen the many different types of splits and I have pretty much all of them in my head. I already cut 2 inches off! What more do I need to do to prevent this horridness?! 😦


  1. DIY How to Trim Your Ends « The Natural Mane

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