DIY haircuts = time and money saved

Hey all! I’ve been very busy since Easter, with a bunch of stuff. My professional life (as a consultant) collided somewhat with my ‘simple life’, and so I’ve been juggling what I can get done at home. One of the tasks I always choose to do myself, though, is haircuts! People are often nervous about giving someone a haircut. I would be nervous of attempting a haircut on someone else’s child, but for my own family I think it’s a total win to do this myself. Why? Even the cheapest haircut costs $15 (for a short boys cut) around here. And that’s if you pick a weekday during school hours. For a Saturday, you are looking at $25. That may not sound much to you, and we could afford to pay for haircuts if I chose to … but I don’t see the value in it, when I can do it myself. Today I managed to pin down William for a haircut. Here’s what he was looking like before I pounced:

Will's long hair: covering up the cute.
Will’s long hair: covering up the cute.

Pretty shaggy, and you can’t tell from this photo but his hair is in his eyes. I’ve been cutting his hair for a while, and sometimes I do a really nice cut, and sometimes it’s a bit off. But I don’t mind (if he doesn’t) and I figure that the more I practise when he is little, the better I will get, and when he is older (and less wriggly) I will be doing a Pretty Good Job (TM). I was very pleased with today’s cut:

Finally finished: he looks younger now!
Finally finished: he looks younger now!

I’ve used a bunch of different instructions from around the web on cutting hair, but today I refreshed my technique with this tutorial, which I found described things with real pictures quite nicely. The hardest parts I find with cutting boys hair are:

  • He gets annoyed and complains. Mostly I pounce when he is distracted playing a game, but he doesn’t like being told to put his head up, and so the hairs go down his neck and make him itchy. I try to be quicker every time. It’s a trade-off between quick and accurate!
  • I don’t do very well taking the hair sections. Usually I get too much hair and I think I have to re-cut the section over and over because of that. I’m working on doing this better.
  • I’m nervous cutting the front part of his hair. I think this means I’m not cutting it quite right (I don’t like to take too much off and make crazy layers). I’m going to have to just follow the instructions for this part of his hair (next time!) and suck it up.

The most satisfying part?

  • I didn’t have to book in a haircut time, so I can get his hair washed and cut at any old time that suits us,
  • I didn’t have to fork out any $$$ now that I’ve spent the few dollars on a pair of haircutting scissors (bought at the supermarket),
  • I feel clever when I get it looking as good as this,
  • I don’t have that rotten feeling I get when a professional does it and I don’t like how short they cut it.

Well, what’s not to love, really? I do my husband’s hair too (his is easy, being shoulder-blade length, just straight across and no tricky sections). I also do my teenage daughter’s hair (she has very long hair — waist length — but it’s easy too). I even do MY OWN hair. Seriously. Since I wear it mostly in a ponytail, I don’t notice if the back section isn’t cut straight across. I haven’t yet cut Evie’s hair. I’m still growing it out, but the time is coming soon when it will need a trim! I may take her to a professional for that first cut, so they can save me some hair. It’s tricky to catch a lock of hair whilst holding the comb and cutting it! The only tools I use for this job are a water spray bottle, a pair of hairdressing scissors, and a comb with a skinny poky end:

Hair cutting scissors and a comb
Hair cutting scissors and a comb

I used to use regular kitchen scissors, and then I decided I’d try the proper ones. I will never go back to kitchen scissors. Wow, a huge difference! If you are thinking of cutting hair, do yourself a favour and buy proper scissors. Messing about with kitchen scissors is a Pain In The Proverbial! Do you cut hair? Do you cut your OWN hair? 😀

3 thoughts on “DIY haircuts = time and money saved

  1. Well I did it! Today I gave both of my boys a haircut. Last time I took them to the barber I was not happy with the results. The hair was not cut evenly and I asked my boyfriend who cuts my hair to fix them. So earlier this week I looked at the boys and said, “This week you are getting haircuts”. I wanted to wait until they were out of school before I tried doing it myself. My youngest went first. I was a little nervous as I put the 1/2″ attachment on the clippers and turned them on. My boyfriend coached me on technique and supervised, giving me tips along the way. Well it was not hard. I wanted the younger one to have it shorter for the summer, so it was pretty much same length all over. Afterwards I took the attachment off and trimmed the sideburns and neckline. Scissors around the ears. It looked great. Then the older one, he wanted to keep it longer on top, so I clippered the sides, and then did scissor over comb cutting on top. My boyfriend did most of that. I did the sideburns and the neckline like my younger. OK, both were done. Brushed each off and then into the showers to rinse off the loose hair. After their hair dried I followed up to inspect my work. A few stray hairs needed attention, but I was extremely pleased with the result. My older son’s hair looked great, better than what he got at the barber shop. My younger one kept looking in the mirror and saying he looked handsome 🙂 I did it, no mess ups and I saved $30 for the two haircuts, plus time and travel. The results were great and I figure at roughly 10 haircuts each a year, I will save $300 a year plus time and fuel costs. Afterwards my mother saw the boys and complimented how nice their haircuts looked. She was surprised when I told her I (with a little help) did them. Needless to say I will not be taking them back to the barber anytime soon when I can get better results at home 🙂 .

    1. That’s fantastic! I’m so glad you got a great result. :). I used to use clippers a loooong time ago but all my boy’s hair is cut longer now. They sure save time! Good on you. I hope your boys are proud 🙂

  2. My youngest son is ok with it clipped short, my older one is more picky. As I mentioned I handed off the scissor over comb cutting to my boyfriend for that phase as he is quite good with the scissors, he cuts mine for me, always a great job. My son did ask that my boyfriend do the top, so when my boys do want to keep theirs longer, I will have had time for more practice and if it seems too difficult, my boys both trust my boyfriend’s capabilities more than mine, so he can always step in to help there again, but I do want to be able to do it on my own. I’m a DIY kind of lady. The savings are really big for me at my income, I figure with transportation costs as well as paying the barber and stylist, I am saving over $900 a year on haircuts. Discussing it with a couple ladies at work, they were impressed with how much can be saved. Real savings because even though I may drag out getting haircuts for a week or so, the boys did get the haircuts and I spent that money. Now I don’t. I shared pics and it had to look good as I would never hear the end of it from my family, or the ex if I hacked the boys hair. And being their haircuts were better than the previous trip to the barber, I am good to go for the haircuts being at home from now on. The next day I shared my triumph with the ladies I work with. They thought I did a great job, after seeing the pics. One coworker really loved the idea as she could really use the savings. She felt confident that she could give her daughter and son their haircuts as her children are still quite young and would not rebel. She asked if I (and my boyfriend) could show her how to do her children’s haircuts. Her emphasis was more on my boyfriend when addressing taking the scissors to her daughter’s long hair being he has been doing mine. And after she had shown her husband her skills, she would suggest that they could save more money if she cut his too. When I asked her if she would be willing to let her husband cut HER hair to save money, she was hesitant to answer, but felt he may not be willing, also that she was afraid he may screw it up. She said if he had the experience like my boyfriend has, she would be OK with it. She then mentioned she would be ok if my boyfriend cut hers and asked me if while she was learning how to cut her children’s hair if I would mind if she asked my boyfriend if he would cut hers at the same time. It is so simple once you get it down, that I cannot believe how much money I will save.

I really love to hear your thoughts, so please leave a comment! :)

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