Have you ever been to a scissor-happy stylist requesting just “a trim,” only to come out of the salon with a big puffball of hair that’s way too short? Sadly, this is common with wavies when visiting stylists who just don’t understand that curly hair (even if it’s just wavy) goes through shrinkage.
Most stylists like to wash your hair before trimming it, which is fine except it means that you can expect your newly trimmed hair to be at least an inch or so shorter when it dries. Not to mention, some wavies have the bulk of their curl in the bottom half of their hair. Trimming this off is practically detrimental! Because of this, many wavies choose to trim their own hair at home, where they are in total control.
Trimming Hair at Home
Trimming off the majority of waves can be a wavy’s worst nightmare. It’s almost like cutting off Rapunzel’s long tresses – especially for wavies whose only real curl is in the lower portion of their hair.
The results can be hair that looks puffy at the tips, closely resembling dead ends. On the other hand, brushing the hair bone straight (like many stylists like to do while trimming) doesn’t give a real impression of what the hair will look like later. You may walk out of the salon with product-induced hair, looking fabulous. Later, you’ll be stuck wondering how your hair shortened since you left the salon.
The reason behind this is that many curlies experience shrinkage, which can be anywhere from just a couple of inches to as much as six or eight inches depending on the type of waves, curls or coils you have.
With all of these potential pitfalls to having your hair professionally trimmed, more wavies are choosing to do their own trims — and they like it!
How to Trim Your Own Hair
Trimming your own waves is actually quite easy to do. How you do it depends on what you’re going for, but if you’re just looking for a basic trim to keep dead ends at bay, try these simple steps:
- Wash your hair and detangle with gobs of conditioner still in with your fingers, then rinse out the conditioner.
- Gently part your hair and section it off into a top section and a bottom one, then let it air dry a little until it’s damp. You could also wait until it’s completely dry as many wavies have better results doing dry cuts. If you prefer doing a dry cut, let your hair dry before sectioning it.
- Once damp (or after it’s dry), begin trimming the bottom section with shears that are meant for cutting hair. Delicately finger comb your hair so that it’s the same length; otherwise you may end up with uneven hair. Of course, if your hair is already uneven, if you have layers for instance, work along your hair’s angle.
- Separate the top part into two sections, then trim or dust the ends. Remember that this is the part that will be visible from the front, so if you have soft waves and don’t want blunt edges, consider dusting the ends.
- If you have bangs, now is the time to trim them as well. Just go straight across or follow the current angle. Style as usual.