Home Barber Haircutting Tips
By Toni C - Nov 2, 2011
If the cost of a haircut is a regularly recurring expense you would like to eliminate then consider the very
doable and cost saving practice of home barbering. By no means is formal or professional training a pre-requisite
for cutting hair at home. A decent hair clipper set, a willing recipient and a desire to learn as you go is a good
start. A couple areas to consider before starting would be choice of haircutting tools and environment. Ideal,
practical results can be expected through practice, repetition and persistence.
For the most part, shears and hair clippers are the two options when it comes to cutting hair. If you are just
starting out then electric hair clippers is probably the better way to go.
Choosing the right hair clippers can, in most cases, make a noticeable difference in the quality of the haircut
and long-term skills development. What is utilized in barber shops and salons is not typically what you would find
at Wal-Mart, Target or any other number of discount retailers.Although hair clipper kits from these types of
stores should be sufficient for beginners, investing in a professional grade hair clipper at the outset can help to
ensure consistent, smooth cutting with low maintenance, long-term reliability.
Detachable blade systems, rotary motors, variable speeds, wet hair cutting ability are a few common features and
functions integrated into a good number of professional grade clippers. Some notable model specific clippers
include the detachable blade system enabled Oster Classic 76, Andis Master adjustable blade clipper, Wahl Five Star
Senior and many more.
The environment includes factors such as location, lighting, seating and overall comfort for both the barber and
the patron. Good lighting goes a long way in helping to make sure all areas and aspects of a fresh haircut are
accurately visible. For easy cleanup, consider cutting hair outdoors or in a garage area.
Raised seating where the recipient’s head is at least chest high minimizes the need to stoop or slouch when
working the hair clipper and saves your back from unnecessary strain. A bar or work bench stool should do just fine
for seating. Barber chairs are always an option if your budget permits.
Consider using an old sheet as a stand in for a barber’s cape. If you are cutting children’s hair, keep a bottle
of baby powder handy for dusting their neck or shoulders. This should help to relieve and minimize the skin
irritation that may occur with small and fine hair cuttings.
A conservative approach to first time haircutting is usually the ideal for all parties involved. Hair clipper
kits that include guide or attachment combs can help prevent accidental bald spots or unintentional hair art.
Consider starting with the largest attachment comb for top cutting. Cut against the lay of the hair for an even
length cut across the area. A comb can be used to bring the hair back to its proper natural lay in-between clipper
passes. Try a smaller attachment comb for cutting hair on the sides and back.
A common clipper movement used by barbers to blend the back and sides into the top area is the rocker motion.
For example, with the clipper resting in the palm of your hand, start at the nape of the neck, cut upwards then
bring it up and away from the head with a slow flick of the wrist. A comb against the area to be cut with teeth
down and the stem slightly angled out can also be used to guide the clipper motion up and away. Use the same comb
to bring hair flow back down and repeat.
Take your time and practice through repetition. Online videos are a great resource for reviewing and learning
useful techniques. Mistakes may happen from time to time but at least you can count on the hair growing back, in
most cases. Be sure to keep your clippers well maintained by blowing out hair cuttings and oiling as needed.