How To Get Rid Of Split Ends Without Cutting Hair – 15 Ways

Get rid of the rough, prickly hair ends without compromising on the length.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Preethi Nagaraj, MD DVL
Written by Arshiya Syeda, BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma
Edited by Ramona Sinha, MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach
Fact-checked by Medha Deb, Integrated MA  • 

It is no secret that trimming is the fastest fix for split ends. However, you can still fix split ends without cutting your hair. If you are concerned about frayed ends or think cutting your hair would be an extreme option, these methods will help. Those who love long hair and hate looking at the split, damaged, and dry ends will find this article useful. Keep reading to learn how to remove split ends without trimming your hair.

What Causes Split Ends?

Split ends, or trichoptilosis, are a common hair issue caused by various factors:

  • Excessive Heat: Frequent use of hot styling tools like straighteners, curling irons, and blow dryers can deplete hair’s moisture, leading to splits.
  • Chemical Treatments: Over-processing the hair with dyes, perms, or relaxers can weaken the hair structure and result in split ends.
  • Mechanical Stress: Rough handling, brushing the hair aggressively, or using elastics that snag the hair can lead to splits.
  • Environmental Factors: Prolonged exposure to sun, wind, and harsh weather can make one’s hair brittle and prone to splitting.
  • Nutritional Deficiencies: Lack of essential nutrients can compromise hair strength and elasticity.
  • Genetics: Some individuals are genetically predisposed to have weaker hair, making them more susceptible to split ends.

Check the following section to learn how you can manage split ends without trimming your hair.

How To Get Rid Of Split Ends Without Cutting Hair

1. Do Not Pick Your Split Ends

Just like picking pimples, picking split ends can worsen them. Splitting up the hair tips causes friction and damages the entire hair strand, resulting in more split ends and hair breakage. This stalls the proper growth of hair.

2. Go For A Hair Spa Treatment

Hair spa treatment to fix split ends without cutting your hair
Image: IStock

One of the major causes of split ends is dry hair strands. Spa treatments like head massage and hair steam increase blood circulation to the scalp and provide nutrients to the follicles to promote healthy hair. Steam opens up the hair cuticle layers, allowing moisture penetration. As a result, your hair stays moisturized and soft.

3. Brush Your Hair Gently

Aggressive brushing causes friction and split ends. If you have split ends, brush your hair gently to prevent further damage. Apply a little pressure to your scalp to increase blood circulation. Moreover, damaged hair with split ends tends to get frizzy and tangled. Don’t comb wet hair and always use a wide-toothed comb to detangle the knots to minimize damage.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Sleep on a silk pillowcase to reduce the friction that leads to split ends

4. Use Coconut Oil Mask

Coconut oil for hair
Image: Shutterstock

Coconut oil has medium-chain fatty acids that can easily enter the hair shaft, prevent cuticle swelling, and minimize interaction between shampoo and hair proteins. This makes coconut oil way superior to other oils like olive oil and almond oil. It also reduces protein loss and strengthens and moisturizes the hair (1). Warm 2-3 tablespoons of coconut oil in a small bowl and massage your scalp and hair with it. Focus on the hair ends. Wear a shower cap and wait for 45 minutes before washing your hair. Follow the routine twice a week for four weeks to get smoother and softer hair.

Darlene Matthews, a blogger, shares how she treats split ends at home using a coconut oil and fish oil mask. She writes, “Natural omega-3 and -6 oils in the fish oil are known to be very effective remedies to split ends and adding these wonderful resources to coconut oil will have you growing your hair like never before by stopping those ends from splitting in their tracks (i).” She adds that while cutting off the splits might be the quickest way to get rid of them, she protects her ends with this treatment and by styling her hair in protective hairstyles like braids, updos, and twists.

5. Minimize Using Heat Tools

Overusing heat styling tools like blow dryers, hair straighteners, and curlers can dry up the natural oils of the hair. This causes dryness and damaged hair shafts, resulting in split ends.

If you have split ends, limit the use of heat styling tools. Use the blow dryer on a cool setting. Use fabric, silicone, or plastic curlers to style your hair. Also, protect your hair with a thermal protectant or use coconut oil treatment before styling.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Opt for hairstyles like a low bun, waterfall braid, or chignoni  XAn elegant hairstyle type that involves a twist or rolled hair pinned at the back of the head or at the nape of the neck. to hide your split ends.

6. Use A Hair Mask Every Week

Hair mask to fix split ends without cutting your hair
Image: IStock

Hair masks help hydrate the strands, restore hair luster, and nourish the follicles. You can use an avocado and aloe vera hair mask to keep your hair nourished and hydrated. Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties (2). Hence, it may keep your hair moisturized and healthy.

You can mix half an avocado with two tablespoons of aloe vera gel and apply it to the scalp and hair. Alternatively, you can use mashed banana to manage split ends. Use a hair mask at least once a week.

7. Avoid Hair Processing

Coloring, perming, keratin treatmenti  XA hair treatment that uses keratin (a natural protein found in the body) to straighten and smoothen the strands. , or bleaching- avoid all chemical treatments on damaged hair. Processing damaged hair worsens the split ends and denatures the hair protein, affecting the hair structure. Denaturationi  XA process, like the boiling of an egg, which involves the alteration of a molecule from its natural state to a different structure. makes the hair prone to sun and pollution damage.

8. Use A Leave-In Conditioner

Leave-in conditioners are great for moisturizing and reviving dry and damaged hair. Get a good leave-in conditioner. You can also apply vegetable oils (like coconut, olive, and almond oils) to towel-dried hair. Concentrate on the hair ends. Leave it on for two days and apply coconut oil before washing off. This prevents further hair damage and split ends.

9. Use A Moisturizing Shampoo

Fix split ends without cutting your hair by using a moisturizing shampoo
Image: IStock

Shampoos containing SLS and drying alcohols strip the natural oils from the hair. Steer clear of them to minimize further dryness and split ends. Use an herbal shampoo with moisturizing ingredients like plant butters and vegetable oils to prevent the split ends.

10. Apply A Light Serum

Always apply a light serum after you shampoo your hair. You can choose from these hair serums or apply almond or argan oils. Run it through the hair strands and use a wide-toothed comb to set your hair. The added moisturizer will reduce the risk of developing more split ends.

11. Drink Water

Apart from managing split ends externally, it is crucial to take care of your hair from within. Dehydration prevents the nutrients from reaching the hair follicles, making the hair dry and prone to splitting. Drink 3-4 liters of water per day to flush out toxins, improve nutrient circulation, and reduce split ends.

12. Consume Green Leafy Veggies

Green leafy vegetables contain B vitamins, vitamin C, and minerals that are essential for healthy hair. Consuming green vegetables can improve your hair health and reduce the chances of split ends. Eat leafy greens like spinach, arugula, lettuce, bok choy, Chinese cabbage, red cabbage, kale, chard, radish greens, beet greens, carrot greens, and scallions.

13. Consume Protein

Consume protein to fix split ends without cutting your hair
Image: IStock

Your hair is made of 95% keratin (protein). Consuming protein-rich foods will supplement your hair strands with the amino acids required to keep them strong, smooth, and shiny. You can consume mackerel, salmon, tuna, sardine, eggs, chicken breast, ground beef and turkey, beans, tofu, lentils, nuts, and seeds.

14. Consume Healthy Fats

Healthy fats are great for reducing chronic inflammation-induced stress. Chronic inflammation occurs due to unchecked toxin buildup in the body. Healthy fats like omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids help reduce inflammation (3). This, in turn, helps keep the hair healthy. Consume olive oil, avocado, avocado oil, seeds, nuts, fish oil, and fatty fish.

15. Take Biotin, Iron, And Folic Acid Supplements

Biotin is a B vitamin that helps strengthen the hair. Iron deficiency can cause anemiai  X A common condition that causes reduced blood flow (low hemoglobin) and inadequate oxygen to the body’s organs. , leading to hair damage and hair loss, and folic acid may help manage diffuse hair loss (4). Consume dates, prunes, brown rice, nuts, liver, sunflower seeds, leafy veggies, broccoli, and peas. You may also take supplements after consulting your doctor.

Infographic: 6 Ways To Get Rid Of Split Ends

Split ends begin slowly but increase with time due to frizz, dryness, and damage. A trim is one of the simplest solutions to remove them, but the below infographic suggests beyond that. Check it out to look through the various remedies and preventative measures and know how to prevent split ends.

6 ways to get rid of split ends (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Get the high-quality PDF version of this infographic.

Download Infographic in PDF version

There are many ways you can fix split ends without cutting your hair. The key lies in hair maintenance, i.e., following a regular hair care regimen including regular hair trimming sessions and hair treatments, eating healthy, de-stressing, following a low-stress lifestyle, and exercising daily. When it comes to hair care, stop picking apart your splits as it does more harm than good! Go for a hair spa treatment to rejuvenate your strands, be gentle when brushing your tresses, apply a coconut hair mask regularly, decrease using heat styling tools, use nourishing hair products like hair masks and leave-in conditioners, and avoid hair processing treatments to promote hair repair. Remember to nourish your hair by eating a healthy and balanced diet as well.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do split ends stop hair growth?

Jessica Shults, a hair stylist, says, “Split ends will not stop hair growth because the growth happens from the scalp. Split ends are at the ends of the hair strand, and if they aren’t cut out, they will split further and further up the strand, making it so brittle it will break off.”

Is it good to pull out split ends?

Shults says, “It is not good to pull out split ends because you will stress the strand out and make it more fragile. They should be cut off.”

Does lemon help split ends?

According to Shults, “Lemon doesn’t help split ends, as the acidity will only dry the hair out.”

Does honey help split ends?

Shults says, “Honey might help moisturize the hair strand, but it will not eliminate split ends as the only way to eliminate split ends is to cut them out.”

Are split ends the same as dead ends?

No. Split ends are characterized by forked, Y-shaped hair ends, and they feel comparatively soft. Dead ends have lost all their moisture, are rough and dry, and difficult to detangle.

Is Vaseline good for split ends?

Yes. Vaseline may help prevent split ends by locking the hair moisture in. It will also make your hair shinier.

Do split ends cause hair loss?

No. Split ends do not cause hair loss. However, they may move up the shaft or get tangled with other hair, leading to breakage.

Key Takeaways

  • Trimming is the quickest way to mend split ends, but you can fix them without cutting your hair as well.
  • Go for a hair spa treatment every month or so, brush your hair gently, minimize the use of heat styling tools, and use a hair mask every week to get rid of split ends.
  • Don’t forget to drink lots of water and eat green leafy vegetables and protein-rich foods to keep your hair healthy from within.

Getting rid of split ends without sacrificing your hair length can be a challenge. Watch this video for some pro tips and tricks to repair damaged ends without having to chop your precious hair off.

Personal Experience: Source

References

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. Hair Cosmetics: An Overview,
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4387693/
  2. Aloe Vera: A Short Review,
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2763764/
  3. The Science of Fatty Acids and Inflammation,
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4424767/
  4. Diet and hair loss: effects of nutrient deficiency and supplement use,
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5315033/
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