There is nothing better than visiting a hair salon with your long, heavy hair and leaving it with a lightweight, styled cut which will make the heads turn.
But there are times when you just can’t visit your favourite hairstylist – whether you are travelling and you wouldn’t trust anyone else, or in situations outside of your control, such as the Coronavirus lockdown. The time comes to cut your hair at home, which is at best – risky, and at worst – it can turn into an absolute disaster without the right guidance and skills.
Fortunately, cutting face-framing layers at home is absolutely possible and the results can be stunning if you execute the cut correctly. And what a better teacher than Paul Edmonds himself, who has revealed his exclusive layering, face-framing haircut technique for the first time ever in this blog.
1. How to Prepare the Hair for the Haircut?
Before you cut your hair make sure that all product residue is removed, the scalp is clean and the hair is detangled from the roots to the tips. Start by gently washing your hair with a deep-cleansing shampoo such as Shu Uemura Moisture Balancing Cleanser for Dry Hair & Scalp. This gentle shampoo is paraben and oil-free and will deeply purify and nourish the hair.
Follow up with Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Conditioner, which contains Onsen-inspired ferment. The conditioner will rebalance the scalp to leave it feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, giving it long-lasting shine.
Finish with applying Shu Uemura Essence Absolue Multi-Purpose All-In-Oil to detangle and soften the hair and protect it from heat.
Gently blow-dry and comb through the hair. Then you are ready to start shaping the layers.
2. Face-Framing Layers. Yes or No?
Face-framing layers are a great way to accentuate face features, adding volume to thinner hair and shaping curly, unruly hair. In short, if you have been considering having a hair cut which features face-framing layers you are probably on the right path.
Just remember that although layers are good for definition, you want them to be soft and not too short, in order to avoid frizz and breakage. When cutting your own face-framing layers at home, you need to be extremely careful, gentle and patient to avoid creating sharp edges or eighties-style hairdos.
Where should face-framing layers start?
Even though you want to add texture and definition to your hair, make sure your layers start close to the chin, or below the nose for medium to long hair lengths. Bobs will require shorter layers, but they are best left to professionals.
How to Cut Face-Framing Layers at Home?
The major thing you will need to remember if you decide to cut your own face-framing layers at home is to be as slow and gentle to the hair as possible.
Though short hair can be challenging to cut, as there is less space for mistakes, long hair is actually the trickiest when it comes to layering and shaping. The method below will focus on cutting face-framing layers for long hair, but it can be successfully applied on medium and shorter hairstyles as well.
Remember – start with a clean, conditioned and detangled hair.
1. Start by shaping the bangs/fringe
Start off by taking a front, shallow triangle section of hair at the front of your head, on both sides of your hairline. Start at chin length then blend into the sides. Merge the two parts you sectioned off and comb forward, ensuring you comb from the root through to the tip. The aim is to create a soft concave shape, without cutting off too much.
Place the comb about midway in the hair and spin it around – this will help you make the concave shape. Start by chipping, NOT CUTTING the hair. When you are finished, twist around and release. You’ll see the concave shape has been created. Make sure the two side pieces are of the same length.
2. Continue by cutting in sections
From here on you want to continue cutting the hair in the same manner, again, without taking off too much at the ends.
Take the next hair section, about 1cm wide, parallel to the first section. Clip the rest of the hair back and mirror the same action on the other side.
Remember to not cut straight but rather to chip the ends. Hold the hair lightly in the fingers and chip the ends. Make sure you don’t take off too much at this stage, only do it gently and slowly.
3. Apply a Sliding Cut
For the third section, you will also take about 1cm in width and mirror the same action on the other side of the hairline. From now on, we want to apply a different style of hair cutting, known as a sliding cut. Continue to cut slowly, as you want to make sure you’re in control of every single hair.
To do a sliding cut move the scissors down slowly as you cut through the 1cm strand of hair. Check that both sides are even.
Repeat with another 1cm of hair, until you reach the back of the head.
4. Final Trim and Style
When you have finished cutting your face-framing layers, comb and check the graduation.
You should have ended up with an oval or triangle, and the haircut should not be heavier or longer on one side or the other.
Finally comb through from the roots and chip away to achieve a soft finish. Then comb it through a few times to ensure that there are no bits left longer.
Finish the haircut by applying Shu Uemura Shusu Sleek Smoothing Treatment for 20-40 minutes to nourish and smoothen the hair, for a gorgeous, shiny, salon-quality hairstyle.