Your DIY Guide to Men’s Haircuts

Fear not, fellas. DIY haircuts have vastly improved from the bowl-cut days. With social distancing in full swing, even your favorite barbers are likely offering virtual consultations to help you tame your mane between visits. If you’re ready for a DIY trim, here’s everything you need to know about at-home haircuts. 

What You’ll Need

  • Hair scissors: House scissors make for blunt chops, so make sure you buy a pair that’s made for hair. 
  • Clippers: The ones you use for your beard should work fine here, but ask your pro if they have any suggestions on how to kick your clippers up a notch. 
  • Comb: Your hair type determines your comb type. Fine toothed combs work best with fine hair and wider toothed combs are ideal for thicker locks. 
  • Spray bottle of water: This will help you wet down sections of your hair instead of dunking your whole head. 
  • Makeup brush: A fluffy brush can be used to swipe scratchy bits of fresh-clipped hair off of your neck and face when you’re done.
  • Styling products: Gel or mousse will help keep hair away from your face and make you look slick to boot. 

Set Yourself Up for Success

Make your work area as much like your favorite barber shop as possible (old-timers gossiping about The Last Dance in the corner is optional.) Make sure you have good lighting, a mirror or two, and an easily sweepable surface so you aren’t picking hair out of shag carpet for hours.

Focus on Trees, Not the Forest

Every barber is different but most Pros suggest that beginners to the haircut game try doing small repairs first instead of going for a whole new look. This means you have to do a little triage and figure out which parts need attention right now and which bits can wait until the barber reopens. Start with trims around the ears, neck, and bangs. Consult with your Pro for guidance about techniques. 

Wet v. Dry

Buzzing with a razor is best done on dry hair. Snipping with shears requires damp hair. Keep in mind that hair looks shorter when it’s dry, so take it easy when cutting wet hair. Stop yourself just before you think you’ve reached your desired length, then dry to check your work. 

Take Crosscheck Breaks

A great home haircut involves checking your work periodically. Between each step, examine your hair from a few different angles to make sure everything is lined up the way you want it to. Good things take time, stud. 

Get a Buddy

No man is an island, and this is doubly true for at-home haircuts. Recruit another person to help check your work, cut hard-to-reach areas, or just cheer you on. Your Pro will be able to do part of this via video chat but they’ll probably need a second opinion from someone actually in the room. 

Style it Up

Since you might end up with a haircut that’s longer than usual, it’s a good idea to use this time to experiment with styling methods that keep your do from bugging you. Gels and mousses help slick back longer hair, but this might be the perfect time to really nail the man bun once and for all. 

If this all seems a little daunting to you, hit up your hair Pro. They can walk you through a cut designed for your specific look, and help you look less shaggy.