This is a question that many people have so I will take the time to try to instruct the best I can. These days the weekly haircut is getting mighty expensive huh? That $12-20 per week is starting to hit a few dudes in the pocket and I cannot even blame them or you for wanting to learn how to give yourself a haircut.
I’ve been doing this for about a year now and it is actually pretty easy. The thing you have to keep in mind that when you cut your own hair is to be steady and slow. You should be spending more time cutting your own head than your barber as a rule of thumb. No one knows your head like you.
The first thing you need to do is wash your hair! Just like if you were going to get cut by a barber, you need a clean head of hair. Trying to cut your hair when it has dirt in it is no good. Wash your hair and then let it dry.
Don’t grab your clippers yet!
Now if this is the first time cutting your own head the thing to do is learn your head. You will want to take your fingertips and massage your head. Yes this sounds weird but just do it. Learn where all the little dips and nooks are on your scalp. This is what I mean when I say you should cut your hair better than your barber. He certainly is not going to massage your head. Unless, umm… you have a special relationship…
So now your head is washed, your scalp is clean and you massaged your scalp. On to step two.
What Clippers Can You Use?
A lot of people will go back and forth on this topic. Some will say you need the super expensive barber grade clippers with the vacuum. Some will say you can get the job done with $20 K-Mart Clippers, and guess what they are both right?
The main difference will be how well the clippers cut out the box and how well they hold up over time. It is obvious you are not going to get the same cut a year into ownership with K Mart clippers as you will the $500 expensive ones. They just aren’t built the same.
I use some simple Wahl trimmers. Wahl Professional’s to be exact. There is nothing special about them. I got them for $49.99 at…. K Mart. Yes, you can get the cheap brand there too but I opted for the Wahls because that’s a brand I always see professional barbers with.
The Wahl’s also come with a small edger that I have never used because they are not meant for coarse (I.E. Nappy) hair. For that I grabbed a pair of Andis T-Outliners from Walmart.
I also have the Andis Professional Outliners but never use them. The only reason I got them was because I read some hype on them. I think I’ve taken them out the box maybe 5 times. The T Outliners give you all you need to trim your mustache and do your lineup.
How to Cut Your Own Hair
It’s time. You have your clippers, you are confident and you don’t mind rocking a hat if you mess up. Let’s do this!
Remember when I told you to massage your head? You are going to cut your hair in the way it grows. Some people will tell you to cut against the grain but I find that a trickier cut to do so I am going to suggest for your first cut to go with the grain.
Start with the guards you prefer (#1 or #2) and set the clippers to their widest setting. That means the little arm is all the way down and the two blades and the furthest apart they can go.
Start just before the crown of your head, somewhere near the middle and cut down towards your hairline. Do this for one side of your head. Then, on the same side of your head cut just below the crown going down towards your neck. Then slowly cut the gap left in your crown accordingly either towards the neck, or towards the hairline depending on how your hair grows.
Repeat for the other side of your head. Brush the loose, cut hair from your new haircut and you are almost done!
Now for the hardest part….
How to Lineup Your Own Hair
Grab your liners (I use the Andis T Outliners) and get ready to cut your hairline. This is the hardest part because it makes or breaks your haircut.
The trick I use is to use a credit card. I use the credit card to guide my clippers and stop me from cutting anywhere I don’t want to cut. Cut in short, quick strokes only cutting the hair that grows outside your hairline. Don’t cut or re-create your hairline or you’ll push your hairline back.
For the back just use a mirror and cut alongside your neck then the base of the neck.
Viola! Magic! You have a fresh cut and it cost you nothing!