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8 Tips for Picking Out Shears

June 14, 2017 | 1:38 PM
Hair: Thomas Osborn and Richy Kandasamy for TIGI
Photo By Roberto Ligresti

Shears are an integral part of your health and success as a stylist. Picking the perfect pair is not a time to try to save a buck or make an unresearched impulse-buy; you’ll be using these every day, multiple times a day, so make sure you take these tips from Fuel Hair to heart.

  1. One-size-fits-all shears don't exist.
    Every stylist has a different set of needs; find a pair that fits you and your cutting style.
  2. The most important factors when selecting shears are comfort and control.
    Choose a handle type and finger rest that feel good. Size isn’t everything—your control is determined by blade length.
  3. A sword edge is great for precision-cutting.
    The blade will push hair away quickly, but it’s slightly less forgiving. It’s perfect for cleaning around ears, perimeter-cutting and strong precision cuts.
  4. Clam-shell edges give a softer finish.
    The rounded edge will draw hair in for a more feathered end-result that is ideal for channel-cutting.
  5. Proceed with caution with a straight handle.
    You’ll need to bend your wrist a bit to use this one. Some stylists prefer it, but others complain of repetitive wrist strain.
  6. Offset handles will give you maximum comfort.
    The slightly angled handle will leave your wrist in a more natural position.
  7. Consider investing in at least three sets of shears.
    You’ll need one pair for everyday cutting, a longer shear with a sword edge (see #3) for perimeter cutting and barbering, and a blender. Consider a traditional thinner in addition, but modern blenders usually work just fine for that.
  8. Shears are an investment.
    There isn’t a set amount to spend on shears, but spend as much as you need to ensure you’re delivering the best service possible for your clients and getting maximum comfort for yourself. You want to safeguard your wrist strength—so make sure you do your research before selecting a pair.
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