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Dusting vs. Trimming: Why One of These Will Save Your Hair Length

March 20, 2019

1 Min read

Most pros will say, to maintain healthy hair, you should try to visit the salon every six to twelve weeks to clean up your ends. However, few of us actually visit a stylist that regularly, often because we fear visits that frequent could cause us to lose too much length. (We’ve all sat down for a supposed trim and ended up with way more hair on the floor than we’d like.) However, when you visit the salon every six or so weeks, you don’t have to undergo a traditional trim. Instead consider asking your stylist for something called a dusting.

Unlike a true trim, which maintains the lines of your haircut (and may cost you an inch or more if your ends are riddled with splits and breakage), a dusting is a very conservative snipping of just your ends—usually a quarter-inch or less and only in the spots you really need it. “A dusting gives your stylist the chance to snip off split ends before they start traveling up the hair shaft, a practice that can save your hair’s health and, in the long run, its length,” says Faith Huffnagle, Prose’s director of education and veteran stylist. A dusting can often be tacked onto a salon blowout or color service, and many stylists will charge you a nominal fee (or nothing) for it.

By comparison, a true haircut or trim is something you need only do every three to six months, says Huffnagle, and its primary purpose is to reshape a grown-out cut. Regular dusting doesn’t mean you can skip your regular cuts (hair doesn’t grow evenly and even the best cut will eventually need reshaping—especially with shorter styles), but it may enable you to push off that trim an extra month—and, ultimately, because your ends will be healthier, lose less precious length.


Regular dusting keeps your hair healthy and so does a custom hair care regimen. Create yours here.



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  1. I got dusting done twice and it actually hasnt grown any longer since. I’m going nuts here. I have 10 inches I need to grow, and fast….. what else can I do?