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tarab , 20 Jan 2009

Split End Pickers?

Okay, I don't know if ya'll do this but, I rip out my split ends and I have to see what they look like. I have to ge them all out of my hair. I am ripping out the back of my hair! Help, do you do this?
188 Answers
January 23, 2009
This seems more like a form of trich to me. I used to pull my hair more but it seems that I've switched to my skin. I used to find really thick hairs and most would be split ends, I'd usually pull at them and split them completely into two separate pieces.
January 29, 2009
Interesting. I used to be a split-end picker, and I would rip the split-end hairs out of my head as well. I actually had my hair cut short at some point (age 17?) and I stopped messing with my hair (even though it is rather long now; I am 32). BEfore split ends, I bit my nails. After I cut my hair is about the time I moved to lip picking. They all seem related to me. I think I am scared to quit lip picking because lord knows what I will replace that habit with. OF course, messing with my hair was a much less harmless habit. It was never a severe habit. But yeah, cut your hair short. You'll start picking at other things instead probably though.
February 20, 2009
I have recently began split end picking. I also bite my nails and skin around them, pick at my face and neck, lip biting/gum chewing, and pick at my scalp. GROSS right! I think split end picking is just one more thing that keeps me occupied. Any pointers??
February 21, 2009
I don't get split ends often (lucky, I know), but when I do get them I have to pull them out, or split them even farther in half. I more pick my scabs.
May 27, 2009
tarab, you are not alone on that one. I played with my hair and picked my split ends, since I could remember. Probably starting around age 10. I am 29 now and still do. I recently cut 10 inches off my hair (never had short hair) and I don't mess with that...However, I do pick my scalp more...Ugh. In college I would zone out with a pair of scissors and stand over the sink and trim each split end. It was not uncommon for me to do that for hours at a time. Looking back now it was most certainly a way to zone everything and everyone out. As alone and crazy as we may think we are...they are a ton of people just like us. And I think we are pretty normal : ) Don't give up.
June 02, 2009
I can relate to that- obsessively looking at split ends and pulling them off (my hair is really really long now, I should really just cut it and get rid of the split ends, but being able to pull off the ends of my hair instead of the entire strand (which i prob would if it was short) is the lesser of 2 evils for me. I agree that you will probably start picking something else if you cut your hair off. I just try to pull it back when I'm around people (so I dont get distracted and anti-social around people... if people were talking to me I would totally zone out and look only at my hair not them which is just rude)
September 10, 2009
I too do this and have done since the age of 15. I do notice i do it less when my hair is short. I leave my hair alone then. As soon as it reaches the collar or a decent length, I ususally notice a split end. As soon as i begin picking them i cannot stop. I pull them apart completely, and get a real buzz watching the process. I have even sat in front of a mirror or perched a magnifying glass to really get a good look and it shows up the little rascals even more. My hair when i begin is thick and lustrous but now a few months later, it resembles rat tails. When brushing it out there are large lumps that are eneven and one side looks like i have cut it in a triangular shape with a few stringy wisps. If i carry on i will be bald. I know i shoukld go and get it cut but never get round to it, any spare time is spent on this undesirable habit. I also pick the skin under my eyes.
September 29, 2009
Hi everyone, So I've been picking my split ends on and off for about 12 years now (AHHH!) There have been times when I've been able to consciously stop and also times that I've unconsciously stopped. Lately I've basically gone off the deep end. I can't stop picking my hair and literally will do it for hours. It's usually when I'm watching tv, on the computer, reading, travelling, in the bathroom... Tonight I've decided that I have to stop! It gives me headaches and I think has affected my eyesight. It's just so hard to stop and people who know about my problem really don't understand how difficult it is to fight the compulsion. Why does it feel so good to break off hairs??
October 24, 2009
I've been picking and shredding my hair since I was 13 and read in Jackie magazine that you should get rid of split ends! I'd never paid any attention to my hair before reading that and was amazed to find a split end! It really did start something!!! Anyway - I'm over 40 now and still do it - I have dents in my thumbs because I run my nails down the shaft of my hair and make several splits then I tear them off - I use a magnifying mirror too and I have been known to save really good split ends! It really revolts me that I do this but I've tried 30yrs to stop and have only succeeded for a few months at a time - the best thing I find to stop me picking is gel or acrylic nails - although I can still feel the splits they are too blunt and clumsy to allow me to shred a strand of hair. I've really got to the point where I feel I have to accept this problem - and just try to limit the damage. Cutting the hair doesn't work - I've tried that too - in fact, in many ways it makes the problem worse as I feel even uglier with short hair!!! Ohhh and the worse thing is...... I do it in bed before I go to sleep - I hate that - I have a sore head afterwards too!
January 14, 2010

In reply to by loreli

Thanks so much for being honest about your problems girls, i have exactly the same thing, it's awful, i want so desperately to stop it totally sickens me. I really thought i was the only one in all the world with this compulsion.
January 14, 2010
I also have an obsession with picking and ripping my split ends, it repulses me but i can't stop. I started when i was about 14 and am now 46! It's got to such a state now that i have a cataract in both eyes - which in my opinion have been caused through picking my hair compulsivley. I have also given myself the most appalling crows feet as a result of straning my brows, then again it could be an age thing!! I've tried for years and years to stop. Thought i was alone until i came across this website tonight.
January 17, 2010
I am primarily a skin picker, but I would always pull out my split ends from time to time, but I found a good way to redirect that habit. Now I trim my split ends instead of pulling them out. I make sure there are good quality haircutting scissors near any of the places I'd normally find split ends - the bathroom, my computer desk, my bedroom, my purse... Now I get the excitement of searching for, and finding, split ends, but I'm not losing the whole hair, just the split end itself. I feel like I'm actually doing a good thing. My other habits typically cause damage to my body, but this one now fixes damage. For a while, I was pushing myself to trim my split ends whenever I felt the urge to do any other kind of picking and it worked really well for a while. Now I'm off of my more effective OCD meds (I don't have insurance at the moment) so I'm back to picking, but at least my hair pulling has stopped. By the way, I HIGHLY recommend that anyone with these issues see a psychiatrist. It was immediately obvious to mine that I have OCD, based solely on the picking (the intensity and duration probably helped in the diagnosis - when I was diagnosed I was picking for hours each day). Apparently, any compulsive picking is at least an anxiety issue, if not full on OCD. I was shocked to hear that I had OCD, and at first thought it might be a mistake, but after my doctor diagnosed it, I started thinking of a million other ways that I'd obsessive or compulsive. I'm not the typical germaphobe, so I'd just never put two and two together. However, as soon as I went onto medication my picking improved. It took a long time, and a few medication increases and changes to feel like my picking was finally fairly under control, but, for me, medication was definitely the real solution. I'd tried to quit many times, with lots of different creative approaches, but until I solved the underlying chemical anxiety nothing was ever going to work long term.
January 21, 2010
Realise i may need to see a Doctor for anxiety problems, I am such a worrier maybe thats my problem, at last decisive action and to be able to admit to it. The more i research this the more i am coming to terms with it. I've tried different ways to stop, wearing a hairnet helped, looks a bit silly but hey.......! So tired of ripping and splitting hairs spending hours bent over a bright light with a mirror and tweezers searching - its so sick. Every day I vow will be the last and every day i fail. Thanks for your help everyone - really appreciate it.
December 29, 2010
This will really help (i think) I been doing this for about almost a year. It's so sad! Anyways I don't know how old you guys are, but if you can find a Barbie or bratz doll they have split ends! Alot instead of messing up your hair mess up the dolls hair lol. I hope this helped!
December 29, 2010
This will really help (i think) I been doing this for about almost a year. It's so sad! Anyways I don't know how old you guys are, but if you can find a Barbie or bratz doll they have split ends! Alot instead of messing up your hair mess up the dolls hair lol. I hope this helped!
February 01, 2011
i cant believe people other than me have this issue! i am obsessed, and i justify by telling myself that there just split ends. I can spend hours pulling them, the time flies by and i cannot stop!
February 01, 2011
i have to see them to! when i get the ones with like ten splits it almost feels like a high, and i just stare.
February 05, 2011
I feel much better now that i know that i'm not the only one. I've been dealing with this since age 11. I'm 24 now. I always felt weird and alone. I can't stop. I have to do it.
February 25, 2011
I have had the same problem for over 20 years. Like other people have said, I also got a high from finding especially damaged hairs. I'm thrilled that I am not alone and that there is finally a significant amount of attention being paid to this problem. One thing that will definitely help is switching to cutting the split ends off with hairstyling scissors instead of picking them off. This is much better for the hair, and I find it is just as satisfying psychologically. I carry hairstyling scissors in my purse at all times. Another thing that helps control the habit is to prevent as many splits as possible by treating your hair gently--using a lot of conditioner, avoiding chemical damage such as perms, etc. Yet another technique to control it is to wear your hair in buns, twists, braids, etc. These styles contain your hair so that you can't see the damaged ends, and braiding will actually help prevent split ends. These styles look pretty and add variety as well. Good luck, everyone!
February 26, 2011
I go through phases with the different things I do to my body. I have definitely had times where I rip out split and broken hairs. I would just stare at them, sometimes pick them apart. I haven't done that in a while. Right now I am more focused on skin and pores. Sometimes I can get a little hair out of a pore, that is the same kind of "high" for me at the split ends. It hurts more though afterwards.

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