Saturday, August 14, 2010

DIY hair cutting for the wiggliest wiggler

When your first son is born with a hair like this:
The choice is clear.

Salon hair cuts

I simply don't know how we could afford both for Mr. Goldie Locks!
I tried letting it grow for the first year like most sentimental, soft baby hair loving mothers would, but as I started looking back at pictures I realized that people were laughing at more than just the carrot face.

It was time.

I was no stranger to the clippers. I had been cutting Daddy Goldie Locks's hair since we started dating, but cutting a grown man's hair is nothing like clipping a wiggly, squirmy baby's fine little tendrils.
This was going take a bit of organization and lots of practice.... Now that I've had a few months worth of clipper cuts under my belt, I thought I'd share my "how tos" on the basic crew cut.

1. A basic clipper set
This set is from Walmart (about $30), which includes the clipper itself, a range of attachments from 2" down to 1/8", very sharp scissors and various combs.

2. Two different attachments for the basic crew cut:
A long attachment for the top and a shorter one for the sides and back. I use 1" and 1/2" for a short crew cut that gives me 3 weeks or more between trims. If the little guy has some curl to his hair or you want it long enough to play around with I would recommend 1 1/2" and 1."

3. A large plastic bag or towel to collect the hair as you cut.

4. A few special treats bribes to help your wiggler sit still.

An extension cord to leave you plenty of flexibility with the clippers and a pair of hair scissors to trim the neckline.

Are you ready?

Step 1
Before you open up the boxing ring for your long haired wrestler, take a few minutes to set up shop.

I like to do it in front of the mirror in the bathroom, because I found that both kids like to watch themselves and it's a relatively easy place to clean up. I also try to save time by laying out a big plastic bag to collect the hair underneath a bumbo "salon" chair for my small client.

Bumbo chair? Won't that be a squeeze? YES. EXACTLY!

Step 2
Plop the little fighter down in the chair with a bribe.(popsicles, lollipops, Mommy's comb??)

Step 3
A great first time tip I learned is to put a baseball cap on the munchkin just before you begin to give you an imaginary line to go off of. The bottom of the cap is just about where the longer length of hair will start moving up toward his crown.

Step 4
Start with the attachment for the longest length of hair you want on the top and buzz at that length all over the head. You'll want to start at the hairline and follow the direction of hair growth as you go.

(Please ignore the different outfits... Apparently, the white shirt was really bothering him, so I figured he was just going to learn to deal with some tiny hairs on his overalls. Teach that baby to tug on his shirt while I cut his hair! Humph.)

Back to work...

Step 5
Switch to the shorter attachment and start buzzing at the neckline, moving upward toward the imaginary line where the baseball cap rests on his head.
Gradually pull the clipper away from the head as you approach the imaginary cap line to help blend the different lengths.

Step 6
Carefully clip around the ears by bending them back. I use the scissors for this part, because it should be mostly touch up after you went around with the long attachment.

Step 7
My little blondie doesn't require too much in this department, but for the Big Guy's hair I use the clippers without an attachment to even up the bottom hairline and the sides of the neck after I'm done.

And you're done!

Let that good little man run out those wiggles!

Some more basic hair cutting tips:
  • Cut the hair vertically to avoid an obvious cut line
  • Section off longer hair before cutting
  • When cutting wet hair remember that 1/2 really shrinks up an 1"
  • Always cut hair when it's freshly clean
  • Don't be afraid to do it yourself! It'll grow back :)


  1. I've been cutting my boys' hair for years, too. Never thought about doing it in front of the mirror since our bathroom is so small. Maybe I'll have to consider cutting it in a different spot where he can see himself. Thanks for the tip!

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