There is more than one answer to the question, “Why is my hair breaking off?”
By Leah Fletcher
Hair breakage may be a serious problem. Whether you are trying to add to or maintain your hair's length. If your hair is breaking off faster than it is growing, it might seem that your hair is not growing at all. And, unless you have a medical condition, your hair is growing on average one-half inch per month.
To answer the questions regarding the reason your hair is breaking off, look at where the breakage is occurring. Is it at the ends of your hair? Or, is the breakage occurring at the crown of your head? There are a wide range of reasons, breakage occurs, according to Dorothy Miller, owner of Dorothy Miller Beauty Salon in the Oak Lane section of Philadelphia,
Miller explained that if you notice a lot of breakage on the ends of your hair, they could be excessively dry. This might be due to too much heat styling. Excessive use of hot styling tools—irons, hot curlers, blow dryers, hot combs--too frequently might explain why your ends are damaged.
Another reason your ends may be extremely dry is lack of conditioning. Do you condition your hair following every shampoo? Do you deep condition on a regular basis as well as use a leave –in conditioner? Black hair, according to Miller, needs moisture to thrive.
Are you using a comb with widely spaced teeth? If you comb has teeth that are too close together, they might be pulling the hair of your tangled ends causing breakage.
Miller believes the solutions for dry, breaking ends include regular deep conditioning, daily conditioning with moisturizing treatments, using a comb with teeth wide enough to work through your hair (particularly natural hair) and easing up on heat styling.
Maybe you notice breakage in the crown area. This may have more to do with styling techniques. Are you wearing tight ponytails or are you using rubber bands? "The wrong type of hair accessories can "catch" and break your hair off," said Miller. She added styles that are too tight can also cause breakage.
To solve this, try using ponytail holders with no metal parts or covered rubber bands. You should also try different hair styles, especially those that don't pull too tightly on your hair.
Overlapping chemical processes
If your hair is relaxed and you touch-up more than the new growth, overlapping the relaxer onto previously relaxed hair can cause breakage. Touch-ups, explained Miller, are a tricky area for many people.
Hair color might also cause breakage, if used too often on top of other chemical processes that leave your hair dry. Miller explained that hair colors that involve bleaching before depositing new color onto the hair can be especially harsh on hair that is already relaxed or texturized.
If possible Miller advises you to see a professional for relaxer touch-ups, even if you can easily maintain your hair on a daily basis. While hair rinses are generally safe enough for anyone to use at home, she believes professional stylist should always perform complicated color processes.
There are other causes of hair breakage besides those mentioned above. Other causes could be excessive tangling, improper application or removal of hair extensions, hats or other headgear that snaps or rips delicate strands of hair. Even scratchy bedclothes, fingers and hands may contribute to the problem. But, breakage may be addressed and corrected, Miller said by employing routine maintenance and regular trimming; and the use of quality hair care and styling products.
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