Hair Breakage vs Hair Shedding - How to Know the Difference

Hair Breakage vs Hair Shedding - How to Know the Difference

Hair Breakage vs Hair Shedding - How to Know the Difference


Everyone loses hair each day. The average amount of hair shedding is between 50 and 100 strands per day. It’s normal to lose slightly more, but if you’re experiencing a great deal of shedding, you’re probably wondering why.  Hair shedding is different from breakage, and both excessive shedding and hair breakage are areas of concern.

How to Tell the Difference Between Breakage and Shedding 

Take a look around you after styling your hair. Do you see a lot of short, broken-off hair strands on your bathroom sink or floor? Are there a few sitting on your shoulders? Once you pick these up, examine them. Chances are you won’t see a bulb, where the hair was pulled from the root. Instead, these rootless hairs represent breakage, and are often the result of too much manipulation, heat or chemical damage.  Hair that sheds excessively, on the other hand, is a normal part of the growth cycle, is generally longer than broken hair, and it retains the small white bulb that was attached to the follicle.  Excessive shedding could be the result of postpartum or seasonal changes, or even medications you take. If you suspect anything outside of that, consult your doctor.

How to Do a Wet Hair Assessment 

Hair Breakage

If you want a test to determine how healthy your hair is, try a wet assessment. This helps you figure out if your hair lacks elasticity and strength, a condition that can lead to breakage.

After shampooing your hair but before conditioning, test a small section by combing out tangles and then gently pulling it and letting it go.

  • If it bounces right back into its normal curl pattern, your hair is elastic and in good shape.
  • If you pull it slightly and it breaks, or doesn’t snap back into its usual pattern, it lacks moisture. You could benefit from more deep conditioning.
  • If your hair feels spongy or mushy, you need a protein treatment to strengthen it.

Conditioning with HAIRFINITY Balanced Moisture Conditioner keeps your hair healthy, and helps avoid breakage issues. Be sure to use heat and chemicals wisely so that your hair sheds normally instead of breaks off.

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