How to Cut your Own Hair

Let’s face it; going to the hairdressers every couple of weeks is an expensive business. If you’re struggling to afford your regular hair maintenance trips then you may have considered cutting your own hair. It’s a risky decision. After all, unless you’re trained in the art of cutting hair, there are plenty of things that can go wrong. You’ll find all kinds of horror stories from women online who have attempted to give themselves the latest style. If you want to avoid becoming one of them, there are a few tips you can follow.

The good news is, once you’ve done it a few times, it is actually pretty easy. Below you’ll discover the best tips to help you cut your own hair without it ending in complete disaster.

How to Cut your Own Hair

1. Practice, practice and practice some more!

As with anything in life, if you want to get good at cutting your own hair you’ll have to practice. The best way to do this is by starting out cutting your hair extensions. Don’t have extensions? Then buy them! Ideally you should opt for real hair extensions as that will be pretty much the same texture as your own.

2. Invest in good quality equipment

The tools you work with will really make a difference to the results you end up with. You’ll need a really sharp pair of scissors before you start. Make sure you’re buying actual hair scissors though. If you go ahead and use any old kitchen scissors, you’ll end up with pretty messed up results. If you can’t find or afford good quality hair cutting scissors then fabric scissors are the next best thing. As long as they are really sharp you should be ok. Dull scissors will not only struggle to cut the hair, but they could also leave you with split ends.

You’ll also need a fine tooth comb and hair grips. The hair grips are used to clip back pieces of your hair so you can easily see where you’re cutting. The fine tooth comb will help to ensure there are no knots and the hair is even before you cut it.

3. Wash or wet the hair

You know when you go to the hairdressers and they wash your hair before they cut? This isn’t just to pamper you; wet hair is much easier to cut. So if you do plan on washing it, don’t dry the hair before you start cutting. If you find your hair is pretty frizzy after washing, use a little leave-in conditioner to make it smooth. This again will make it much easier to cut.

If you’re lucky enough to have thick, bouncy hair, you may find parts of it start to dry before you get around to cutting it. In this case you can use a spray bottle to wet the hair as and when it’s needed.

How to Cut your Own Hair 1

4. Enlist a little help

For your first attempt at cutting your hair, it can be a good idea to get a little help. This doesn’t mean you have to ask them to do parts of it for you; they’ll simply be there for guidance. They will be able to see if you’re making any mistakes and stop you before it gets out of hand. They’ll also be able to give you an honest opinion of how well you’ve done.

5. Measure the cut

Before you start snipping away, use your fingers to measure exactly where you want to cut. If you’re simply trying to get rid of damaged ends, you’ll want to aim to trim around 6mm up from the split ends. This will help to keep your hair in great condition. One key factor to take into account when measuring the cut is that when your hair is dry, it will look shorter than it does when it’s wet. So be sure not to cut too much off if you want to keep your length. After all, you can always cut it again if the hair isn’t short enough, but you can’t do anything about it if you cut too much off.

6. Understand how to cut

Now this is one of the most important tips to follow. When cutting the hair, don’t trim directly across. You’ll need to hold the scissors slightly diagonally for best results. Don’t be in a rush either. Take your time and ensure you maintain a firm grip on the hair with your fingers. It’s worth noting you can trim the hair with the scissors going directly across. However, it will give quite a blunt look. Holding the scissors diagonally helps to provide a much softer finish.

cut your own hair

6. Work in sections

When you look up tips for cutting your own hair, you’ll find some experts tell you to tie your hair in a ponytail then hang your head upside down before cutting the end of the ponytail. While this can sometimes provide really effective results and it’s certainly quicker, for your first time it’s recommended you work in sections.

Start by cutting the bottom layers. Clip the top parts of the hair up onto the top of your head. That way, it won’t get in the way while you’re trying to cut. All good hairdressers use this method. Once the hair is clipped in place, use the comb to divide the bottom layers into small sections. You can let the top layers down a little at a time once you’ve finished with the bottom.

7. Make sure it matches up

As you’re cutting different sections, ensure that the length of each one matches up. This is a step you’ll need to keep following as you go along. It’s easy to make one side shorter than the other; particularly when you’re just starting out.

Overall cutting your own hair isn’t easy to start with. That’s why it’s recommended you take your time. However, if you follow the steps above you should find with a little practice you’re soon an expert at cutting your own hair. Of course, it’s easier to just trim your own hair. If you’re looking for a more radical style, the hairdresser is still your best option.

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