Save Money - Cut Your Own Hair!


Haircuts are expensive. Here in the UK a lady's haircut can cost you anything from £20 (or $33), with a lot of salons charging much much more than this.

And for me, a trip to the hairdresser's isn't the relaxing, luxurious activity that it is for many of my friends, and consequently I resent any money at all that I have to pay for this supposed privilege!

As my hair is medium length, I need to have to have it cut every few months if I want to keep it this length. So if I never went to the hairdressers again this would potentially save me upwards of £120 ($190) per year.

But besides the cost, there are plenty of other things that annoy me about going to a hair salon.

Do-it yourself.

Source
OUCH!  photo credit: nutmeg on Flickr
OUCH! photo credit: nutmeg on Flickr

Lying back into that hair-washing sink cricks my neck, causing me much pain and grumpiness for the rest of my salon experience.

And I can do without the lady cutting my hair insincerely quizzing me on one of the subjects recommended in her hairdresser's "making conversation with customers" manual.

Then when she uses her pongy chemical-filled products on my hair they make me feel sick, and invariably she cuts too much off, leaving me thinking that I could have done a much better job myself...

Plus I'm one of those people who just can't help tipping! I know it's my own choice and so my own fault, but I just think that a hair salon is one of those places where it's expected. And that if I didn't leave a tip, then were I ever to go there again they would remember me and scalp me.


Oh what a waste!

So I end up paying the price of the haircut (which to a frugal person like me is already a crazy price), plus the 10% tip.

And all for a cut which I'm less than happy with, (and which I will undoubtedly go home and alter myself). And for a pain in the neck!

It is for this mish-mash of reasons, that for several years now I have been cutting my own hair.


You what?

When I tell people that I cut my hair myself I tend to get some looks of sympathy. After all, when it's said about somebody that they "probably cut their own hair" it usually means that their hair isn't looking that great, and they're possibly not the most fashionable kid on the block.

Once the look of sympathy and surprise has registered on their face - and then hastily been wiped off again, they usually compliment me and tell me what a great job I've done and how brave I am!

I don't really mind that they might not mean it. Maybe they do admire me, even if it's just for daring to do it, maybe not. Other people's reactions don't bother me. I know that I've saved some money that I can spend on something more useful instead!

And I really enjoy cutting my hair. It serves as a creative outlet for me; it allows me to express my creativity, in the same way that someone else would perhaps get from painting a picture (or indeed writing a hub, which is great too!) I would even go as far as to say that it has become a hobby.


Oh no, what have I done?

Photo credit: Truth Went Trendy on Flickr
Photo credit: Truth Went Trendy on Flickr

What have you got to lose? (Ok, other than hair...)

Most people I know say that they would be far too nervous to attempt to cut their own hair. They'd be worried it would look bad, and they'd have no idea where to start.

Well like anything it's trial and error, but I would definitely recommend giving it a go. After all, you don't know that you're great at something until you try it! And I think that everyone should try this at least once in their lifetime - because you might just surprise yourself. (In a good way!)

Ok, so when you first try cutting your hair it might not turn out quite as professional as a salon-look. But does that matter? The answer to that probably depends on your lifestyle, but for me looking pristine is not one of my priorities in life.

If it does go a little wrong then it's not the end of the world. It's only hair. And you're free to alter it whenever you want to, and in the comfort of your own home. Your haircut doesn't have to be a one-time event, it can be an ongoing experience!

If you cut too much off then there's really no point stressing over it; before long it will grow back again.

And practice really does make perfect. The more you do it the more confident you'll become, and you will gradually find out what works best for you.

If the worst case-scenario were to happen and it all goes horribly wrong then you can always use a hairdresser as back-up. If you weren't trying it for yourself you would have gone there anyway, right? So no real loss.


My Method (as I laughingly call it!)

Some people use rulers and proper equipment and are quite organised about the whole business of cutting their own hair. Here's a lady who gives some good advice that is probably worth following.

Personally, I'm not so organised. For me cutting my hair is an excuse for me to cut-loose (no pun intended), to be creative and feel liberated! And crazy as it may sound, following the rules just kind of takes the fun out of it for me. (But then maybe I'm weird...)

I've experimented with a few different hair-cutting approaches over the years:

When I first started doing it I was intent on layering! Having seen a hairdresser use a special razor to feather-cut my hair I would hack away at the sides to create different lengths and "texture". It looked ok, and I have to admit that hacking was fun! But after a while I realised that I could create a similar effect by holding a clump of hair from each side and sliding the scissor blades down it (working from my face outwards), so I'd end up with the shortest layer nearest my face, with progressively longer hair as I moved outwards.

When I was feeling adventurous I would also create different layers all over my hair in a fairly haphazard manner. Using a hand mirror with the fixed wall mirror I could make sure that the longest layer (the length) was more or less even all the way around (although asymmetric lengths can be fun too!)

After a while I realised that I could layer the sides pretty well without the need to hack. I would make a middle parting and comb about a centimetre of hair down over my nose and cut it to the length that I wanted the shortest layer to be. Then taking another small section of hair from either side of it I would cut this a bit longer, and continue outwards like this a couple more times until I got a kind of step effect. (It looked better than it sounds!)

Having to spend time cutting the length and trying to make it straight all the way around was a little tricky and after a while the precision this involved was starting to take the fun out of the whole thing. So I took a tip from my friend's boyfriend. Fed up with the long-hair style he'd had since teenage-hood, he'd decided to put his hair in a ponytail and just cut it all off!

It sounded easy and liberating, so I thought I'd give it a try! I wet my hair slightly and made a ponytail, my scissors at the ready. But then I realised that as a ponytail is at the back of your head it's not as easy as you would think. I used my hand-held mirror to see the back of my head, but cutting that much hair was a two-hand job, and I needed my second hand to hold the mirror...

So I decided to adapt the method slightly by making bunches, (two ponytails, one on each side of my head), and snipping them off. Other than making sure that they're roughly even before cutting them, and then tidying up the back a little afterwards there really is nothing else to it!

I'm not necessarily recommending this particular method, after all everyone's different, and we all have different hair types and want different styles, but it worked for me. My own hair's fairly straight and quite thick, so I wouldn't know how to go about cutting curly hair or very short hair, for instance.


Buzz!

But the fun's in the trying. After a while you'll develop your own method and figure out what works best for your own hair and style. And hopefully you'll have as much fun as me!

I love the buzz that I get from cutting my hair. The sense of liberation, and the feeling of satisfaction when it's all cut and looking not-too-bad-at-all. And best of all, it doesn't cost a thing!


Haircut 100 - Love Plus One

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Comments 21 comments

Ivorwen profile image

Ivorwen 6 years ago from Hither and Yonder

I know just what you are talking about! I have been cutting my own hair for more than ten years, as I was always disappointed by the professional cuts I paid for. Blunt, layered, long and short, I've tried them - only once have I been disappointed. Still don't know why I didn't like it that time. :)

I cut my kids and husband's hair too, though I am currently in need of a new pair of clippers.


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 6 years ago from London Author

Thanks for your comment Ivorwen. I'm glad you know what I'm talking about! I don't know why more people don't try it. And good for you for trying all those different cuts.

I haven't tried cutting my daughter's hair yet, other than her fringe, which normally turns out ok, (once I can get her to stay still for long enough!) But I think I'm going to attempt to cut the length a bit as it's getting a bit straggly. (My husband won't let me near his hair, lol!)

It would be even better to save the cost of haircuts for the whole family. :)


mireland19 profile image

mireland19 6 years ago from Maine

This is amazing! My hair is very long and I have been growing it for many years which is exactly why I don't trust anyone to cut it. On the other hand I am to afraid to cut it myself either! I used to have my sister trim it for me and she always did fairly well but she has moved away so now I am left with no one to depend on lol! Thanks for all the great ideas! I love that you detailed so many different things to try! Looking for scissors right now! Thanks! :)


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 6 years ago from London Author

Hi mireland, thanks for reading my hub! And thanks also for your lovely comments. I don't blame you for being protective over your long hair, and it's a shame your sister moved away.

I thought I'd write down some things that I've tried over the years in case anyone found them useful. I'm sure you'd be able to cut your hair yourself, especially if it's a straight cut along the bottom. If you tried it, then I hope it turned out well. Hopefully you'll discover this is something you can do yourself and not have to go to a hairdresser ever!


Iamsam profile image

Iamsam 6 years ago

I can understand you as I am cutting my hair myself.

Nice hub


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 6 years ago from London Author

Thanks for your comment Iamsam. Glad you're doing this too, and saving lots of money!


MermaidMoney profile image

MermaidMoney 5 years ago from Detroit, Michigan

OMG! I have been cutting my own bangs and then let the rest of my hair grow for like 5-6 YEARS without cutting it at all... then letting my husband cut it! LOL!!! This cycle I have done for like 15 years.

I think this calls for another blog.... ha ha!

Thank you for the inspiration and also I am so so so glad i am not alone in this... ;D


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 5 years ago from London Author

MermaidMoney, you must have lovely long hair. I like the way you do things! I'm also glad that I'm not the only one who stays away from hairdressers, and manages their own hair. :)


Karen N profile image

Karen N 5 years ago from United States

I've thought about cutting my own hair, but don't quite have enough nerve to do it. :)


ElianeLaura profile image

ElianeLaura 5 years ago from Quebec city, Quebec

two pairs of scissors for 30$ and 2 years later... Never letting a hair dresser near of my hair again. I agree with all of this ! :)


Mow 4 years ago

I've cut my own hair about thrice now... am really glad I am not the only one in the world cutting their own hair!


Siobhan 4 years ago

Shocking, I bet your hair is v. Interesting!!!! As a senior stylist myself I can honestly say I bet it would look better if u went to the salon. Maybe ur just going to the wrong salons?!?!?


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 4 years ago from London Author

Thanks for all your comments. I'm glad I'm not the only one too! (Although I suspected I probably wasn't). I cut it again a few days ago, it took me quarter of an hour, it gets easier each time. And I'm very happy with it. :)

Siobhan, thanks for your comment. It's true that my hair might well look better if I went to a salon, (although it never has so far, lol!) So perhaps I have been to the wrong salons. But if I'm happy with my hair the way I do it, and it saves me a lot of money, then that's good enough for me.


JSParker profile image

JSParker 4 years ago from Detroit, Michigan

Am I right that you included the "Early Morning Starshine" video because you like the music and--WOW--all that hair?

When I was the career woman, I spent more than $600 cutting and coloring my hair. Now I'm a somewhat early retiree, and people ask me even more now where I get my hair done! Well, I spent about $50 a year at Great Clips and do a little trimming in between myself.


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 4 years ago from London Author

Yes, you are right, and it's from the musical "Hair"! :)

Wow, yes people spend so much doing stuff to their hair. I had to google Great Clips, and it looks good.

I'm so glad that you're getting lots of compliments now, good for you and your trimming!


gjcody profile image

gjcody 4 years ago

Moon Daisy ...just had to say hello ...interesting article. I am a hairdresser for many years. I have owned a chain of salons and I would tell my stylists to say we do not accept tips ...but please send someone else to our salon. It was great for business and it definitely inceased business. And I have to say we did and still do many of the families from all incomes. I love cutting and styling hair ...but most of all I love making people feel good when they leave my salon ...we create a relationship with our clients.

I am sorry you feel like you do about a salon ..but I have to agree with Siobhan and say you just have not found the right salon.

We all deserve an income and I am sure you do not realize how much it costs to run a salon.

But I am sure if you were not happy with your haircuts, it probably does look better when you cut it. LOL.

Any ways ...I just wanted to stop by and say hello ...my best to your success and health! ...and may I add your haircuts!

Please stop by soon and say hello!!


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 3 years ago from London Author

Hi gjcody, thanks for your comment, and sorry I'm only just seeing it and replying!

I love your idea of telling your stylists not to accept tips. That would solve a lot of dilemmas. :)

Maybe you're right that I haven't found the right salon! I do quite like doing myself though, I like the creativity. You never know though, I might just venture to a salon again one of these days.


Diana Grant profile image

Diana Grant 2 years ago from London

I took a chance and let my partner cut my hair. I was very pleasantly surprised by the result, and 18 years later he is still doing it (no, not the same haircut, or his arm would be worn out and my neck would be stiff).

Every now and then he points out how much he's saved me, at about £30 a time. Say 5 times a year for 18 years = £150 X 18 = £2,700 or approximately $4,000. Not bad!


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 2 years ago from London Author

Hi Diana, thank you for your comment.

That's great, and I'm glad you have such a talented partner! That really adds up to a lot doesn't it? We can save so much by learning to do certain things ourselves.


RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 2 years ago from the short journey

I gave up on hair dressers a long time ago. Maybe it's just my hair… Anyway, my husband helps me keep it trimmed. You've encouraged me to expand my (our) skills… :)


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 2 years ago from London Author

Great news RTalloni! Much better if you can do it yourself, (or get your husband to do it). Think of all the money you've saved! Diana (above you) has worked out how much it's saved her over 18 years and it's about $4,000, amazing! Thanks for your comment.

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