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To Trim Or Not To Trim?

Most natural hair women, of African descent, that I know, subscribe to the idea that trimming their hair isn’t necessary.  Certainly not as often as they did in the days when relaxing their kinks.

Although I now recognize when a trim is a must for me – basically when the ends of my fine hair tangle and knot up  more than usual – I found myself, initially, adopting that same mindset.

As I near closer to the day when I must face the shears again, the last time was 6 months ago (far past my due date), I decided to seek out some online opinions on the topic.

According to Tamara Floyd of Natural Hair Rules here are the top ten reasons you know you need a trim:

    1.  Ends Are Damaged

    2.  Hair Lacks Shape and Movement

    3.  Hair is Breaking

    4.  Hair is not Growing (that you’ve noticed)

    5.  Noticeable Split Ends

    6.  Hair is Frizzy

    7.  Hair Tangles Easily wet or dry

    8.  Single Strand Knots

    9.  Hair Lacks Curl Definition

    10. Your Hair Seems Unmanageable or Unruly

Ariane Roberts of Black Naps  has this to say about the topic:

“Many women of color fear the dreaded scissor.  That may be because they have had so much breakage to the point where they are tired of losing hair. I know when I had a relaxer that was the case with me. Even though my hair was already short and breaking by the minute I didn’t want to lose any more hair. However, the reality is trimming natural hair is a necessary part of a healthy hair care routine. When hair is not trimmed eventually it takes on a thinned out appearance.

It your hair is growing but seems to get thinner and thinner this may be why. Your hair should be trimmed at least every 8 to 12 weeks and by a trim I mean, ¼ to ½ inches of hair. If you prolong getting a trim you wind up losing more hair than you really have to lose. Instead of the mere ½ inch you lose while trimming, you might have to lose 1 or 2 inches.  The average amount of hair growth that we typically experience is ½ inch per month, others may grow more, some may grow less, but that is the average amount. Give your hair time to grow, wait two or three months, and if you do not know how to trim yourself get your hair professionally trimmed.

There seems to be a debate on this topic. Some sites maintain that you need to trim your hair while others actually say that you do not have to trim you hair if you take care of it properly. However the truth is you do! Simple things such as washing your hair or the weather causes damaged or split ends so even if you are caring for your hair properly trims are necessary. If you are not causing extensive damage to your hair, you will not have to trim as much off but you will still have to trim your hair.”

Ariane Robert’s commentary above, I feel, gives an informed perspective not often voiced.

What is your hair-trimming schedule and why?

Do you agree or disagree with the 2-3 month byline?

Share your thoughts, opinions, articles and videos on the subject with NHCN and let’s keep the education going!

Pamela 

Comment on this articleChanging attitudes about natural hair” is what we do at Natural Haircare News. Through informative articles, podcasts and videos, we go beyond just sharing the latest advice and tips on kinky, curly, wavy haircare – We shake things up and focus on the realities of wearing our hair natural. Not sure of which products are right for your hair type? Visit our solution oriented natural hair products store.

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4 Responses to To Trim Or Not To Trim – That Is The Question

  1. Lee says:

    Alas, about 2.5 inches of my hair needed to be cut off during my most recent visit to the salon. (I Love Lulu’s, natural hair care salon in LA!!!) This was my conversation with Lulu…she’s all about healthy hair, so she didn’t hold back…

    Lulu – You need another 2.5 inches cut off…the colored part is damaged.
    Me – Yeah…I know…
    Lulu – It’s not going to get any better if you don’t do it. I mean it will keep splitting if you don’t cut it.
    Me – Yeah…I know…
    Lulu – I could understand if it was healthy hair that you were attached to, but now it just looks like you’re trying to hold onto length even if it’s damaged.
    Me – Okay (swallow) do it.

  2. Karen says:

    Thanks for another thought provoking article. I enjoy reading your articles and really like when you include pictures.
    I’m still a new natural and have been enjoying watching my hair grow. I’ve been growing it for @13 months and am happy with the length (6-6.5 inches). What I’m not happy with is how it “hangs” when I do a wash ‘n go or a twist out and after reading this article, I know why. I need a trim to give it shape! Until I read this article, I just thought it was how my hair grew.
    So now I’m on the hunt for a stylist that specializes in natural hair.
    Thanks again for great (and timely) natural hair information.

    • Pamela says:

      Thank you Karen for being a committed and active reader of Natural Haircare News. We’re so glad you’re getting what you need to make your transition as effortless as possible. I finally got my trim about 5 days ago and it’s amazing the noticiable difference that it makes. My hair looks healthy, full and responds much better to styling products and methods! Check out our past post on Choosing A Natural Hairstylist.

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