How to Properly Clip Split Ends

Snip off split ends before they get worse.
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If your hair has more splits than a cheerleading team, it is way past time to snip those snarly strands. Creating a clean cut does more than just improve your look; it also stops the brittle breakage from getting worse. While you can cut straight across the bottom to detach the ends, it does nothing to get rid of the splits in your shorter layers. A better method removes all of the split ends while leaving your healthy strands alone.

Brush your hair thoroughly to remove any tangles.

Gather together a 2-inch-wide strip of hair from one side of your head. Pull the rest of your hair together and secure it with a hair clip so that it is out of the way.

Pick up the smaller section and turn the bottom of it clockwise until the entire strand is twisted. The twist should be tight but not so tight as to curl or bend.

Look closely at the twisted strand and notice that there are tiny hairs sticking out along it. These strands are the ones with split ends on them.

Hold the strand in place with one hand and pick up a pair of hair shears with the other hand. Turn the shears so that they are parallel with the hair.

Snip 1/8 to 1/4 inch off of each hair that is sticking out of the strand. Start at the bottom, which will have the most split ends, and work your way up.

Release the strand and untwist it.

Unclip the remainder of your hair and separate out another 2-inch-wide section. Secure the rest of the hair back in the clip.

Continue the process of twisting and trimming until you have removed the split ends from all of your hair.

  • Do not use a brush with plastic bristles, as they can actually cause splits ends. Instead, purchase a brush with natural bristles.
  • Get your hair trimmed by a stylist once every six weeks.
  • To decrease split ends in the future, spray your wet hair with a leave-in conditioner after each shampooing.

Kimberly Johnson is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in various online publications including eHow, Suite101 and Examiner. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and began writing professionally in 2001.