Thick and full hair is every girl’s dream, but when your hair starts thinning out, especially at the ends, it will make you ask yourself why this is happening. The answer is that brittle and dry hair leads to thinning at the ends.
Brittle hair is made up of split-ended, frizzy, dry, dull, and lusterless hair, and its appearance differs from full-and healthy hair.
Reasons for Hair Thinning at the Ends
These are some of the reasons for hair thinning at the ends.
1. Continuous use of heat styling tools
One of the ways moisture escapes from your hair is by evaporating and turning into steam. When you wash your hair, it returns to its natural state as moisture is restored.
Using hot tools (1) or equipment to style the hair is a very common practice. Although you may look beautiful after hair styling, the impact of these devices is negative. It makes your hair dry, thin, damaged, and prone to breakage too.
For instance, straightening irons remove all the moisture from the hair to straighten it. (2)
2. Overshampooing the hair
Overwashing your hair might lead to dry hair ends. Shampooing your hair every day may not be suitable for your strands. (3)
While shampoo helps eliminate dust and dirt and cleanses the scalp properly, excessive washing of the hair is not advisable. It strips the natural oil from hair strands and makes hair dry, which leads to weak and thin hair at the ends.
3. Not detangling the hair before shampooing
Detangling before shampooing will ease the knots formed in your hair. It is difficult to detangle hair when wet, and it’s also unsuitable as it is in its most fragile state and can break easily.
To easily detangle hair, divide your hair into four parts and comb it out gently before washing it. Gently massage your scalp with shampoo to stimulate blood circulation, which can help decrease hair fall and prevent clogging of pores.
4. Underlying causes
Dry and brittle hair is treated by finding out the underlying cause, which can be psoriasis, thyroid issues, etc. (4) Also, different hair therapies, including natural products, can help treat the condition.
It is also beneficial to take care of your hair through regular oiling, applying hair masks, etc., so the hair can be kept healthy and strong.
5. Poor nutrition
A diet lacking in vitamins and protein may make the hair dull, dry, and brittle. (5)
If your diet consists of only bad fats and sugar, your hair may not get the nutrients needed to grow well. Poor nutrition does not only make hair brittle, but it may also lead to breakage and fall.
Therefore, you must consume a balanced diet and eat foods rich in vitamins C, A, D, and E for healthy hair.
6. Excessive hair bleaching
Bleach reacts with the pigments in the hair in a chemical process called oxidation, which leads to the removal of the hair’s natural color, rendering it colorless. Excessive bleaching might lead to hair loss that leads to hair thinning at the ends. (6)
One study found that the properties of bleached hair, such as elongation and tensile strength, were different from those of untreated hair. Also, bleached hair suffered from accelerated photodamage when compared to virgin hair. (7)
7. Using low- or bad-quality hair dyes
Dyeing the hair weakens it. Semipermanent and permanent hair coloring products contain ammonia and peroxide. The ammonia swells and opens the hair’s cuticle, permitting the peroxide and dye to get inside, leading to color change. These openings are closed partially when a pH-balancing conditioner or color-stopping shampoo is used.
This process of hair coloring makes the hair weaker and more porous, resulting in thinning at the ends. (8)
Remedies for Hair Thinning at the Ends
To save your hair from thinning at the ends, try these measures.
1. Fenugreek hair mask
Here is a simple way to use fenugreek seeds for hair growth:
- Soak 1 tablespoon of fenugreek seeds in water overnight or for 12 hours.
- The following day, put it in a grinder to make a paste. You can add a little water to make it a thin paste. If you have dandruff, you may also add yogurt. Mix the ingredients well.
- Apply the mixture to your hair and scalp and along the length of the hair. Give your scalp a gentle massage.
- Leave it on for 30 minutes.
- Wash it off with lukewarm water.
- Repeat the process twice weekly for at least a month to see desired outcomes.
2. Oil massage
Nowadays, more people are turning to traditional hair oiling to look after their hair and prevent hair thinning. Dermatologists are getting many queries about the types of oils that are beneficial for the hair and how to use them. (9)
Here is a simple method to infuse your scalp with nourishing oils to encourage healthy hair growth.
- Heat a mixture of oils that includes 1 tablespoon each of olive oil, castor oil, and coconut oil in a pan.
- Massage your scalp with this oil concoction in a circular manner.
- Cover your hair with a damp towel.
- Leave it on for 1 hour.
- Wash your hair with regular shampoo.
- Repeat this process twice a week for best results.
Precautions to Prevent Hair Thinning
- Always apply heat protectants before using heat styling tools.
- Deep conditioning once a week by applying a leave-in conditioner is crucial.
- Use a hair mask if you have long locks. It offers an extra boost to your hair by providing it with nutrition and hydration.
- After hair washing, it is best to air-dry rather than rub your hair with a towel.
- Avoid excessive combing of your hair. Rough and extra combing of the hair can damage the hair cuticles, resulting in hair thinning.
- Trim your hair often as it helps in the growth and thickening of the hair. Hair ends may have been weakened and need to be cut off. (10)
General Queries Related to Hair Thinning
Can hair loss be a reason for thin hair ends?
Yes, loss of hair does make hair thin.
Do split ends make hair ends thin?
Yes, split ends make the hair thin, especially for individuals with a V hair shape. Fraying at the shaft and damage by environmental or physical factors can lead to split ends.
There are many reasons for thinning of hair at the ends. Usually, this issue is temporary and can be resolved with simple lifestyle changes. Seeking medical help is also a great option.
- Lee Y, Kim Y-D, Hyun H-J, Pi L-Q, Jin X, Lee W-S. Hair shaft damage from heat and drying time of hair dryer. Annals of dermatology. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3229938/. Published November 2011.
- PA; CPWNWMC. The effects of water on heat-styling damage. Journal of cosmetic science. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21443842/.
- Punyani S; Tosti A; Hordinsky M; Yeomans D; Schwartz J; The impact of shampoo wash frequency on scalp and hair conditions. Skin appendage disorders. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34055906/.
- Hair loss: Who gets and causes. American Academy of Dermatology. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/hair-loss/causes/18-causes.
- Guo EL, Katta R. Diet and hair loss: Effects of nutrient deficiency and supplement use. Dermatology practical & conceptual. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5315033/. Published January 31, 2017.
- Jeong MS; Lee CM; Jeong WJ; Kim SJ; Lee KY; Significant damage of the skin and hair following hair bleaching. The Journal of dermatology. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20860738/.
- Hair dye. Hair Dye – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics. https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/chemistry/hair-dye.
- He L, Michailidou F, Gahlon HL, Zeng W. Hair dye ingredients and potential health risks from exposure to hair dyeing. Chemical research in toxicology. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9214764/. Published June 20, 2022.
- Mysore V, Arghya A. Hair oils: Indigenous knowledge revisited. International journal of trichology. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9231528/. Published 2022.
- How to stop damaging your hair. American Academy of Dermatology. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/hair-loss/insider/stop-damage.