6 Tips for Trimming Natural Hair June 29 2018
Trimming natural hair can be a complicated job, especially when you’re trying to grow out your mane. Every little bit of growth counts, right?
Plus, some of the conventional methods of cutting hair don’t apply to women with curls. You probably already know you need to trim to have healthy hair, but it can be difficult to know when and how you should cut it.
Before you read this article make sure you're NOT making these 10 Natural Hair Mistakes!
In this post, you’ll find out when, why, and how you should trim your natural hair. If you want tips for doing the perfect trim that will help to grow out your hair and keep it healthy, keep reading.
1. Buy Quality Shears
Using quality shears is perhaps the most important thing about trimming your own hair. Shears that aren’t sharp will do a great job of hacking your hair and this will likely lead to split ends.
If you want quality hair, you must use quality products like the Snappee Hair Tie so purchase a quality set of shears and put them away in a safe, dry place when not in use. You should only bring your scissors out of their hiding place on wash day.
2. Cut the Strand Straight Across
Pay close attention to the angle of the scissors when you cut your hair. Making slanted trims can cause split ends. A few split ends are inevitable when you have curly hair, but you should always try to control how many you have.
Split ends can take on many forms. On curly hair, they frequently show up as tapered ends. As the strand splits in two, the weaker side will usually break off, and you’re left with a single tapered end. The tapered end then begins to fray.
Once a strand splits or frays, it can easily form a single-strand knot. Frayed ends love to comingle with healthier strands also, so your hair will likely become more tangled when you have split ends.
If you cut a strand at an angle, you are unconsciously creating a tapered end and setting your mane up for failure. Trimming at an angle will cause the hair shaft to become uneven. This weakened ending can cause the strand to split into two.
Instead, cut each strand straight across and never trim at an angle.
3. Only Cut Your Hair When It’s Dry
Should you cut when your hair freshly washed, or should you cut when it’s dry? Cutting wet hair may seem like the normal approach, but trimming it while it’s damp or wet can lead to frayed ends.
The best way to visualize this point is by imagining two pieces of paper. One is damp and the other is dry. When you cut the dry one, you can get a sharp line across, right?
But when you snip the wet paper, the line is uneven. The scissors did the job, but now the wet paper is cut into a soft, jagged line, looking almost like ripped paper.
It’s the same when you cut wet hair. Wait until your hair is dry to trim, or do it before you take the shower.
4. Don’t Try to Trim on a Regular Schedule
Cutting on a regular schedule has advantages if you’re trying to maintain the same length. However, if you’re trying to grow your hair out, cutting can be counteractive.
When you cut on a tight schedule, you really can’t be sure whether your hair needed a haircut. So, you could end up cutting all your new growth!
Instead, trim only when necessary. If you’re noticing that your hair has begun to tangle too easily, you may need a haircut. Getting a lot of single-strand knots or hair fairies at the ends can also indicate that it’s time for a cut.
If you’re looking for a solid number of trims per year to follow, there really isn’t one. You’ll have to pay attention to the cues to determine when it’s time for a trim.
That said, many naturals tell us at Snappee that doing a full trim once or twice per year works well. However, these full trims don’t include the search and destroy method, which should be done on a weekly basis.
See below for information on this helpful trimming method.
5. Use the Search and Destroy Method
Avoid the temptation to pull knots apart. Pulling tangles, much like regular hair ties, can lead to frayed ends and damaged hair. Instead, actively search for straggling ends and single strand knots at the beginning of each wash day.
Stragglers tend to cling on to healthy strands and cause tangles, so you’ll want to be proactive about how you handle these potential problems before you get in the shower.
First try gently guiding the knots apart with your fingers and a dab of conditioner. Then use a sharp pair of shears if it doesn’t budge.
You’ll be much more tempted to impatiently pull and rip strands when you don’t have a pair of scissors close by. Keep a pair of good quality shears in front of you while you work on your hair and use them throughout your wash day.
Using the search and destroy method will allow you to only cut problem strands. This technique will let you go a long time without a full trim, and it will keep your hair healthier overall.
6. Cut in Small Sections or Twists
Do you have an area on your mane that is damaged and shorter than the rest? Don’t forget to snip the ends on these strands too.
Many naturals have withered ends at the crown area that need extra TLC. That means, you need to apply more deep conditioning treatments, apply protein more frequently, and be diligent about trimming that specific area when you get a cut.
It helps to cut the hair while it is in small twists. Trimming this way will help you focus on every hair, including the short strands in problem areas.
Don’t feel like doing twists? At least make sure to cut in small sections. Focusing on a few hairs at a time will help you organize while you trim, and it will prevent overzealous cutting.
Doing trims is key to maintaining long, healthy natural hair. You’ll notice your curls pop when you’re not holding on to straggling and frayed ends. Just make sure you follow the best practices when you decide to cut.
Remember, if you're not using Snappee Hair Ties you could damage your hair using the old throw away type.
What about you? Do you have any special protocol you follow when trimming natural hair?