We can agree that some people do not need to trim their hair often while others really need to in order to keep damage at bay. The way you choose to trim your hair is entirely dependent on you, your hair goals, your hair’s rate of damage and your skills. Here are 4 video tutorials describing the main ways to trim natural hair:

1. The ‘Search and Destroy’ Method

This is the most time consuming method but it does have the added benefit of conserving the most hair. You need patience and diligence to filter through individual strands and cut away only damaged split ends or knots. You will need good light and a mirror or two if your hair is not long enough to pull down and see the individual strands. Entertain yourself with a movie (or two) if necessary.

2. Trimming individual twists or braids

If you do not have time for a search and destroy then this method may be for you. All you need to do is clip some hair from the end of medium to small twists or braids. The smaller the braid section, the better the trim will be, however, you do not need to try to install mini twists, parting the twist with a square inch section at the base will give you a good result.

3. The straight hair trim

It really is not necessary to straighten your natural hair for a trim. However, if you happen to have straightened your hair or you regularly wear your hair straight, then trimming it in this state has the advantage that shrinkage is eliminated. Less shrinkage means hair is easy to handle and you never cut off more than you intend to. If you are looking to have an even hair cut, then this too is the method for you

4. The ‘curls that no longer curl’ trim

This method is most useful for people whose hair naturally clumps in curls but this does not mean that you cannot use it if your hair does not. The general principle is to smooth wet, lightly conditioned hair down and trim off the ends that ‘feel’ rough or do not form a regular curl. If your hair is quite kinky, the ‘feel’ method can be very unreliable and therefore you should modify the method to simply cut off what you want

Ladies, what method do you use to trim your hair? And why does it work best for you?

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31 Comments on "4 Methods To Trim Natural Hair"

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Chloé Cece
Hey I have alot of split ends and I trimmed during the summer and I live in the Caribbean and I dont know if its the hot sun thats always damaging my hairs and I need edge control for my edges because they dont stay down and I plait or braid my hair before I go to sleep and leave in for some some and the curl pattern goes away after like 5-10 mins it doesnt stay and my parents dont always have money for me to buy heat protectant and good hair product packs like the cantu shampoo/cond and… Read more »

[…] There are 4 ways to trim Natural hair, find out HERE […]


[…] is an article I found on Black Girl Long hair that was very helpful. Do yourself a favor and check it out, the article discusses a different […]


This is great, but does anyone have advice for damage at the crown?

I had a really unfortunate haircut six months ago….split ends and dead lanky strands (my hair is naturally medium-fine/wavy from the back of the crown all the way down. Horrible cut and split ends in layer.

I can actually gather the worst section of damage into one lock but I’m actually afraid if I touch it I’ll leave a bald spot.


*split ends in EACH layer, I should say


My brother is a hairdresser so I get him to trim it from time to time


A shame MD Obadan didn’t prescribe a grammar cream..
I’ve been really negligent and haven’t trimmed my hair (Ever) since going natural 3 years ago. Only recently have I abandoned the wash and go. Horrible, I know. I’m on a mission for healthy hair, though, appreciate the trimming tips. Thanks!

i want to share my testimony on how i gain my nature hair back in just three weeks: i had very thick curly hair.i straightened my hair 3 year ago.they after some time started 2 fall out.i also having dandruff problem all d time, before i used shampoo called antidruf containing ketoconazole and tugain 2%(minoxidil) have stopped using chemical one year ago.but still i am loosing a lots of hair everyday and my hair has become so thin. when a friend of my visit me and i explain how i lose my hair every day, she told me she was… Read more »
Sheryce Watson

I go to a professional and have her blow my hair out so she can see what needs to be trimmed and that I feel was the best way for me. That’s what I did when I had loose natural hair now I’m locking my hair so trims will not be as necessary to maintain my hair.


[…] cut.  Severely worn ends need to be cut.  These weak points need to be removed. (Check out this post for various ways to trim natural hair.)  After your trim, you can then really focus on achieving […]


[…] cut.  Severely worn ends need to be cut.  These weak points need to be removed. (Check out this post for various ways to trim natural hair.)  After your trim, you can then really focus on achieving […]


The twist/braid method! 😀 I usually know when I need a trim because my shed hair starts to tangle and create knots on my ends. BUT I search and destroy for SSKs every once in a while


I blow-out my hair to trim because it’s fast and I can see & feel exactly what I need to trim. I ,usually, only need to trim every 4 months.


i cut of any straggly, long ends that are there after i twist my hair up after washing or during the week. i cut out little knots too.

my hair seems to be okay with this approach.

i haven’t done a big trim in almost two years.


I’m so afraid to trim my hair, but I really like Method 2. It seems the easiest and considering I only get my hair straightened once a year (for my birthday and a trim) then the third method wouldn’t work. The first method really would take forever and the fourth one is just kind of weird to me.


I do the small braid method about twice a year. Where the braid starts to taper, that’s where you cut. Pretty straight forward. It is time-consuming to take down all those braids though, so I usually leave them in for 2-4 weeks, but in the end, I have a really nice looking braid out.


Love ur measurement!! I never can tell how much to dust off. I used to straighten n trim then I realized that was stupid b/c I 95% prtcv style n hv a LOT of shrinkage. Doesn’t matter if its cut straight if I never wear it straight. Rotflmao at me.


I twist my hair and then just cut off the very tips. I use the width of my thumb as a measuring tool.

I stopped the search and destroy method just because of how I would concentrate more on the front than the back.


I am a huge advocate of “dusting” (and/or trimming) of split ends. Because I take excellent care of my locs I only have to do so every 8-10 weeks. Therefore, I maintain a very progressive hair growth/length while combating split ends. However, I go to the salon because I want it done the CORRECT way (LOL).

Mocha Dier

Im in dire need of a trim … i bleached my hair when i first cut it a year ago and never had a trim or nutn…i can feel the rough dry damaged ends, but something has me holding on to it. 1. i like the colour it has (sometimes, cuz i rinse it) and 2. I think im obsessed with length. I’ll make up my mind and cut them off 1 day tho


Be sure to trim soon because your hair will start to split/break off at a higher and higher length. It will also refrain your hair from growing any longer, if not break off and become shorter.


Hubby trims mine once a month or so, does a perfect job.


Where can I get one of those? Give him a hand clap AND the big piece of chicken and rncourage him to teach a class!


i trim in small sections every 4 months. My sections are probably similar in size to the individual braid/twist trim. I do not trim in braids or twists because the pattern of the twist or braid does not allow for the ends of all the hairs to culminate at the end of the twist or braid. So i do it in loose sections while twisting. I will part a section to twist, trim it, then twist it. I trim as a part of my protective styling process every 4 months.


I trim just about the same way (more often, because my hair is fine and prone to damage). My hair doesn’t retain length evenly, so trimming in braids/twists is just asking for split ends, these fine , fragile strands cannot abide heat, and I aleady spend way too much time in the bathroom on hair maintenance… a search and destroy is out.

Kay Tee

Search and Destroy – every 6-8 weeks.

Crystal J

I so meant to thank your post. Search abd destroy has worked best for my daughter’s hair.


I am totally fearful of messing up my hair, so I just go to the salon. my hairstylist knows that when I want a trim that is what I mean, A TRIM.

Ugonna Wosu

I love Naptural85(not shown here) and AliciaJamesMusic’s methods.


I just used the Naptural85 method and I am really pleased with the results. Letting the conditioner soak first helped me to determine how much I needed to trim versus how much I needed to increase my use of moisturizing products.