It all goes back to July of 2013. We were midway through the year and, for the better part of the year, I was violating rule one of avoiding setbacks. I allowed my busy schedule to become an excuse for not conducting regular deep conditioning treatments. I wore my hair in a daily bun which allowed for neglect to occur as I placed my focus mainly on my skin care journey. Put all those factors together and you have a recipe for a setback.
Since July was my birthday month, I wanted to treat myself to a visit to see Marie. As always, she had my hair laid. But after straightening, she had to trim a couple of inches of hair to address the damaged ends. When I left the salon, my hair was blunt cut, reaching the bottom of my brastrap. I cursed myself silently for letting the damage get this far. But by the end of the year, my hair began to make a miraculous comeback.
Then I started thinking.......It seems like after every mini chop, I'm likely to retain length. Another thing I noticed is just after my trim, the hair could better withstand manipulation from styling without excessive breakage. That's when the breakthrough happened. What if I utilized trimming as a part of my retention strategy versus a last resort to combat damage?
What would happen if I trimmed regularly every 6 months? 3 months? Monthly? What if I used trimming, not as a way of addressing damage, but as a part of my damage prevention/length retention strategy? After having that thought, I had to let it sink in just a little. Normally, I see trimming as a bad thing. I have to do it because something bad happened. Once I'm done, I've "lost length" which is also a bad thing.
No longer will I look at trimming as something I should try to avoid.
My new strategy for trimming will look something like this:
- Make sure I have a pair of quality scissions (DONE)
- Trim off any obvious split/thin ends (DONE)
- Trim after every chemical treatment.
- Trim in sections, not just the ends of my longest layers.
Not to mention how great my hair looks and feel after a decent trim. Sure, I may have lost a couple of inches but I get healthier looking hair in return and additional retention in the long run.