Silky, shiny hair are perceived as healthy hair. Hair grows from the roots and therefore the end is the oldest part of your hair. This end portion of your hair is also the most vulnerable and exposed part of your hair. Imagine, how many times it must have been washed, styled or straightened? How many cold, dry or humid days it must have seen?
Over time, daily wear and tear of hair degrades down the hair cuticle, exposing the inner cortex which results in split or frayed ends of your hair.
SPLIT ENDS AND WHY THEY HAPPEN
Split ends happen when the ends of your hair become dry, brittle and frayed. They can develop rapidly due to excessive damage and lead to slow growth of hair. Some of the most common causes of split ends include:
- Physical damage as a result of styling, brushing, detangling, constantly touching your hair which lead to slow break down of cuticle
- Excessive use of Heating tools is one of the main reasons for split ends as it causes extreme damage to the ends
- Friction caused by fabrics and materials can also damage your cuticle. Hats, scarves, and sweaters all accelerate development of split ends.
- Environmental factors like heat, cold, wind, dry climates all can lead to split ends.
- Apart from these, internal factors like diet, water intake, and overall health can impact strength of your hair.
HOW OILS HELP WITH SPLIT ENDS
Oils come with tonnes of benefit for hair. They not only help in maintaining healthy hair, but also provide much needed nourishment. The oil produced by scalp does not reach your tips and therefore it is essential to nourish your hair ends regularly to prevent split ends.
The best way to prevent split ends is by using hair oils not just on the scalp but also on the hair ends. These oils help moisturize and protect hair strands from splitting apart. The fill in the gaps between the cuticle cells by preventing loss of moisture and provide essential nutrients to strengthen the cuticle barriers.
BEST CARRIER OILS THAT HELP TREAT SPLIT ENDS
Hydrating Coconut Oil: Cold pressed coconut oil is known for reducing loss of protein from hair. It helps keep hair strand soft and healthy as it deeply penetrates hair shaft, nourishing it with fatty acids and triglycerides. This helps in preventing split ends, frizzy hair and brittle ends.
Olive Oil: Olive oil has high content of oleic acid and polyphenols which makes it resistant to oxidation. Applying olive oil on hair will help nourish your hair and protect it from environmental damage as well.
Sweet Almond Oil: Sweet Almond oil acts like an emollient which helps fill the gaps in your hair strands by keeping it hydrated and thereby making it less prone to split ends. It also makes hair softer and shinier.
Hemp Seed Oil: Hemp seed oil is rich in Vitamin E and essential fatty acids which provide deep conditioning to hair. It also helps reduce water loss and keeps hair strands well lubricated thereby preventing split ends from occurring.
Argan Oil: Argan is a very nourishing oil which is rich in several fatty acids, minerals and antioxidants. It provides conditioning to hair and protects hair from free radical damage.
BEST ESSENTIAL OILS FOR SPLIT ENDS
Lavender Essential Oil: Lavender is one of my favorite essential oils and is a wonderful hydrator. It is known for its soothing effect and makes up a great conditioner. It helps deeply condition which boosts shine and nourishes hair. It helps repair split ends, dry hair and prevents breakage.
Cedarwood Essential Oil: Cedarwood essential oil encourages hair growth y stimulating hair follicles. It helps strengthen hair, repair split ends and prevents frizz.
Rosemary Essential Oil: Rosemary oil is one of the most popular essential oils for hair growth as it stimulates hair follicles. It promotes healthy, shiny, frizz free hair and helps prevent breakage.
Geranium Essential Oil: Geranium oil is full of antioxidants and can help strengthen weak strands and follicles. It also helps minimize damage and prevent further damage and works wonder in bringing dull hair back to life by boosting shine.
Tea Tree Essential Oil: Tea Tree is a natural antifungal and acts as a stimulant. It promotes hair growth and prevents hair fall. It is known to help deal with dandruff and helps kill and repel head lice.
Prewash Treatment for Split Ends
- 1 tbsp Coconut oil
- 1/2 tbsp Castor oil
- 1/2 tbsp Sweet Almond oil
- 3 drops Lavender Essential oil
- 2 drops Rosemary Essential Oil
- Melt coconut oil over double boiler. Once melted, remove from heat and add sweet almond and castor oil.
- Now add essential oils and mix well
- Apply on your scalp and hair and gently massage for 10 minutes.
- Leave the oil overnight and wash with a mild shampoo next day. Follow up with a conditioner.
- You can use this hair oil 1-2 times a week
RISK & SIDE EFFECTS
- Essential oils are only for external use and should never be ingested
- Store essential oils out of reach of children and store them apart from other products. Some essential oils can be fatal to pets and therefore always research before using them
- Essential oils must ALWAYS be diluted before applying on skin as they are highly concentrated as can cause irritation. You can dilute them in carrier oil of your choice and the max concentration of essential oils should be 3-4%
- Always do a patch test before applying on larger areas of skin
- It is unclear what effects essential oils have on pregnant and breastfeeding women. While some consider them safe, many doctors advice pregnant women to avoid use of essential oils
- Always buy pure essential oils and stay away from fake counterparts as they wont contain same therapeutic benefits
HOW TO PREVENT SPLIT ENDS
- Get regular haircuts and trims
- Do not wash hair daily and when you wash, always use conditioner or leave in conditioner
- Look for natural shampoo with no harmful chemicals
- Use a wide tooth comb to detangle wet hair
- Minimize use of services which damage hair like coloring or straightening
- Use heat protective spray and minimize se of heat on hair
- Maintain healthy diet
- Prevent certain hairstyles like pony tails or hair twists which can cause split ends
Split ends impact the look of your hair and makes them look dull. If left untreated for long, it can cause hair damage. When it comes to split ends, prevention is the key. It is important to keep your hair well-conditioned and nourished as it may help prevent breakage.
Disclaimer: The information provided on this page is for informational and educational purposes. I am not a medical professional and highly recommend consulting a doctor before using essential oils as part of any medical treatment.