“Hubby” here. Just recently, I was confronted once again with a familiar problem: I needed a haircut but was many miles away from a barber or hair stylist.
After giving this frustrating problem some thought, I also remembered frustrations from many of my recent past haircut experiences:
- Haircuts cost me money! In our new lifestyle, we now focus more on keeping money than on earning it. So paying for the same service ten times a year (forever) doesn’t make much sense. And, like everything else these days, haircuts are only getting more expensive.
- I rarely receive a haircut that I like. This is partly because as I age, there’s less and less that can be done well with my hair. But also, I’ve discovered that many barbers give everyone essentially the same haircut. On several occasions, I’ve found myself walking out of the barbershop looking a lot like the guy that left the barber chair just before me. You know that you can expect this outcome when the barber begins the conversation with words that sound like “do you want a ‘regular’ haircut?”
- We move around so much that even when I find someone that cuts my hair the way I like it, we move again and I’m once again shopping for another barber or stylist.
- With our new independent lifestyle, I like the idea of depending on others as little as possible. Cutting my own hair seemed to fit right into our goal of living self-sufficiently.
After thinking for a while about it, I decided to try giving myself a haircut. My online research results were poor since the videos I found were for men’s haircut styles that are nothing like mine. (I have no interest in shaving my head or giving myself a “mohawk.”)
So, I searched for a hard-copy book instead. I decided on “Scissors and Comb Haircutting, A Cut by Cut Guide” (Bob Ohnstad) which gave me the basics of hair cutting. The only tools I needed were a comb and good pair of scissors. (I used household scissors but a pair of barber’s scissors might make it easier if you want to spend a few extra bucks.) This book was written in the 80’s and has example photos that reflect that era, but my own hair style hasn’t changed much since then anyway.
I was able to “measure” my hair length in the back of my head by using my fingers and was able to keep the length even this way. Didn’t need a mirror for this either. Most of my hair is now about three finger widths long, but you could use one, two , three, or four fingers based on your style preference. Trimming around the ears and making a straight line in back was surprisingly easy. Because I normally don’t keep my hair that short I didn’t use electric clippers. However, the book made them look pretty easy to use and they are fairly inexpensive to purchase online.
If you think you may want to start cutting your own hair, but are nervous about it, try paying a barber one more time and closely watching what they do (although, you have probably seen it a hundred times before already). You’ll see that they don’t do anything magical.
I recommend that you reset your expectations slightly and just enjoy the experience. Get used to cutting your own hair and save yourself some money, time, and frustration. Also, if you try it once and aren’t pleased with the results remember the stuff does grow back!