Becoming your very own hairstylist isn’t as difficult as one may think. From the very simple buzz cuts to the very neat fades or undercuts, there are many haircuts for you to try on your own, if you’re just willing to practice a little bit.
Getting to the DIY haircut is quite rewarding and the more you learn about it, the more you’re going to save on your budget too.
If this is the first time when you’re thinking about cutting your own hair, here are some tips to have in mind and things to consider before making the final step.
Get the right tools
You do need to do a bit of due diligence so that you make sure your haircut isn’t a total disaster. You may be having the skills to do a good job every time, but you do need to right tools for it too.
Getting some clippers that “chew” on your natural hair, without even cutting it right, isn’t something you want. You don’t want the blades rusting or dull very soon, or not to take the long use either.
So chip in the extra buck and get some good, efficient and reliable clippers. They don’t’ have to be expensive, but the chances for them to do a great job are higher than when buying the cheapest on the market.
- The brand and price
Some names are more popular than others so there must be something that those specific manufacturers know about hair clippers. This may sound like a cliché, but play it safe and get something that everyone is buying. You should pay something between $30 and $60 when it comes to good clippers for home use. Going lower than $30 is going to give you poor clippers, whereas more than $60 may be too much for your amateur skills. But then of course, you’re the one setting your own limits!
- The accessories and extras
Many clippers come with plenty of additional items: scissors, capes, incredible storage boxes. If you feel like you want to pamper yourself, take the leap of faith and get one of those.
What you do need along with the clippers are in fact the various guards (the more, the better!) as they’re going to give you the real chance to try various haircuts.
- Adjustable or detachable blade
Most of home clippers out there present adjustable blades. The typical feature is a side lever that gives you control over the lengths of your cuts. You may pull the lever in a “closed” position, when cutting the hair shorter. When you leave it “open”, you’re going to be able to get a longer cutting length.
You may obtain a simple, comfortable way to have more control on how much hair you are cutting, aside from clipper combs. Layering your hair mid-cut with just a simple and fast flick of the lever is great.
You may also take it to a whole new level with some detachable blade clippers. The cuts are going to be crisper and you’re going to feel a lot better when using clippers like that.
This kind of clippers work differently as you need to swap one blade with a different sized one, for controlling the cutting length. If you’re a beginner, this may be a bit too much for you.
Even though you get comb sets for detachable clippers as well, using clippers on the naked blades is what brings satisfaction after all.
Most of us out there do go with adjustable blade clippers as they’re easy to work with, not that expansive and come with plenty of accessories too.
- Size and weight
A common clipper is 6” or so and weighs around 1lbs. many of the models out there are made of metal, taking a fall and the long time use. They may also heat up and tire your hands a bit more, but they compensate with their durability and rugged build.
Most of the lightweight clippers out there are cordless models, but they may not be as performant as the corded ones.
How to cut your own hair
Cutting your hair with clippers is a comfortable and streamlines process that doesn’t even compare with the one using scissors.
As long as you’re not doing the most sophisticated haircut out there, it shouldn’t take you more than three minutes or so. A buzz cut typically would take around 3 minutes, whereas you may need 15 minutes for something more complicated.
Going against the grain is the main rule to keep in mind when cutting your hair at home. As your hair’s direction is different on your head, you may want to check it before actually using the clippers.
Here are some steps to follow in case you’re trying a buzz cut at home:
- The top
When you’re planning to have a shorter buzz, you need to pay extra attention to the crown as the skin is a bit more delicate there than other parts of the head. Be gentle when working in that areas and start with the top, going front to back.
Be careful as you reach the creases on the back of your head and go gently in that area too.
- Go to the sides
The area around the ears is always a bit challenging. Many clippers kit come with specific attachments named “ear tapers”. Play it safe and use these attachments and not the standard combs.
If you’re using a naked blade, it best to try as slow as you can so that you don’t end up poking your ear. Even though you may not injure yourself, you may still get hurt.
- The back of your head
Many go bottom-to-top in and against the grain motion once again. You should get a small hand mirror for that so that you may see exactly how your hair cutting is doing.
“feeling” the length of your hair from time to time may help you too, but the risk for missing some parts is a lot higher.
You don’t want to ruin your hair cut, so using a hand mirror for the back of your head is going to help you not to miss any uneven hair patches on the back of your head.
- The neckline and sideburns
you do want these parts to look nice and sharp, as they’re very easy to notice, telling people how great/bad you’re at cutting your own hair.
You may want to use a neckline template for the neckline. They’re quite easy to find and very helpful, but you can also try going with your very own. Some get creative and even use belts to get a right neckline.
Placing your fingers and taking a very good look at the hand mirror, while trimming slowly is enough for getting it right.
Keep in mind to leave the sides a tad shorter than the top if you like a more professional look for your haircut.
In many cases, the hair on the sides seems to be a bit bulkier, giving the fake impression that your hair cut isn’t symmetrical. This is why it’s a good idea to take a bit more off the sides, which gives you balance and makes your hair look nicer.
A 1 or 2 clippers sizes difference between the two sections is what you typically want for your haircut. If you’re going #3 guard on top, you need to make the sides a #2. Keep in mind that this is going to show a lot of your skin, so give a thought about how short you actually want to go on the sides. A slight difference evens the hair on the sides, which is denser typically and the hair on top.
All of these steps are only a recommendation and each may find his own order. You may switch your hands from time to time, but this takes practice and skill. It doesn’t really matter if you follow these steps exactly or not. It’s more important to have a nice hair cut in the end.
How to make your haircut last
The best thing about home haircuts is that you my easily refresh your hairstyle whenever in need. Getting the clippers and doing some fine adjustments before you go to sleep is easy peasy. Not feeling it? Wake up 5 minutes earlier the next day and do the minor adjustments that you felt to do last evening.
Home haircuts are also supposed to be a great way to relax, not only to save some bucks on the way.