Skip to Content

How To Cut Your Own Hair When You Can’t Get to the Salon

How to cut your own hair when you can’t get to the salon without looking like a hot mess:

How to Cut Your Own Hair The Right Way - ladies, if you're thinking about cutting your own hair, READ THIS FIRST. Make sure you do it the right way, so you don't wind up regretting your haircut! These simple tips will make sure you get the perfect haircut at home, DIY style! beauty | fashion | hairstyles | DIY | salon | hairstylist | how to | tutorial | step by step | YouTube | trim | easy

If you’re thinking of cutting your own hair, read this first to make sure you know how to cut your own hair the right way. 

Is it bad to cut your own hair?

I know…I know…you think I am crazy. I’m ok with that. I have accepted it long ago, and dare I say, embraced it.

Especially right now when you can’t get to a salon because they are all closed.

I thought it myself the first time I stood, hair dripping, hand quivering and scissors aloft in my bathroom mirror…but I promise you, the bowl cut horror stories are nothing like my DIY Haircuts.

When I was a kid, back in the 80’s and 90’s, perms were all the rage. My mother, bless her heart, gave me several home perms. They never quite worked out right, and I always wound up smelling like a nuclear waste plant.

She also cut my brothers’ hair (thankfully I escaped the “buzz cut” fate, but they were not so lucky).

I think she wisely avoided cutting my hair at home because she would have had to fumble her way through it, and it would likely wind up disastrous (no offense, Mom!).

Nowadays though, there are SO many resources available to teach you how to cut your own hair.  Now, I’m not saying that you should take your scissors and start playing Vidal Sassoon and doing crazy styles, but a simple trim, or basic layer cut is easy to do, and think of the money you will save!

Should you cut your own hair?

If you head to the salon every 4-6 weeks for a trim, that adds up FAST.

Your stylist may hate me, and I am sure I am gonna catch hell from any hair professionals that stumble upon my post (SORRY!) but hear me out! You can in fact cut your own hair successfully. You can even learn how to cut your own hair with layers!

The truth is, they know you can, and that’s why they get so mad when they hear people saying they do their own trims.

Now I’m not saying my aim is to put hairstylists out of business, of course a major change is something you might want to consult with a professional on, but a little clean up between salon visits makes a world of difference.

My aim is not to have everyone in the world giving themselves haircuts. However–a nice, trimmed hairstyle can make you FEEL better.

If you don’t have the money, doing it yourself can provide that boost that you need. Not only the sense of accomplishment for knowing you can do it, but also because your hair looks fresh and healthy!

If haircuts for yourself and/or your kids are simply not in your budget or if your local salon is currently closed, then you can cut your own hair and save that money for more urgent expenses.

How to cut your hair the right way:

1. I am NOT Paul Mitchell, I know my limitations and don’t expect to have a cutting edge fancy schmancy look off the cover of Vogue. HAVE REASONABLE EXPECTATIONS.

2. Do NOT cut your hair while PMSing, or just after a traumatic breakup, or any other time where you might be emotionally unstable. It wasn’t a good look on Britney, it won’t be a good look for you either.

3. Use only VERY SHARP scissors or shears (see below for some great, cheap tools to use). That being said, please refer to tip #2. No stabby-stabby.

4. Do not cut your hair wet. It’s easier to see mess ups right away when it’s dry. Therefore, you can make sure to make adjustments as you go.

5. Speaking of adjustments, TAKE YOUR TIME. Cut slowly little bits at a time. Never hack off several inches at once. You can always take more, you can’t put it back on.

6. Never ever cut straight across. Blunt cuts are for the pros. Blend your snips by cutting “UP”.

7. Do your research. There are TONS of YouTube tutorials that walk you through how to cut your own hair step by step.

Find one who has similar hair (length, texture, etc) to yours, and watch that video at least 3 times BEFORE you pick up the scissors. Then have your laptop or computer near by to watch the video for reference. Pause, rewind, repeat as necessary.

8. DO NOT cut your hair right before a big event (*cough* like a wedding). Just in case there are any screw ups…

9. Be confident…if you’re convinced you will screw up, then you will. Relax, take a deep breath and go.

10. Remember: Hair grows back. It’s not irreversible and if you’re currently on a stay at home order, no one’s gonna notice anyway!

If your bangs wind up a little shorter than you’d like, just pin them back with bobby pins, and in a couple weeks they will be good as new. As long as you cut in SMALL amounts as mentioned above, you have nothing to worry about!

Ready to cut your own hair?

Look for advice from professionals! Sites like You Probably Need a Haircut will pair you up with a professional barber to give you advice via webcam!

If you’re nervous, this should give you the peace of mind to cut with confidence.


Sunday 12th of May 2024

how do you cut the back of your head

Brenda Elizabeth

Monday 23rd of January 2023

Where do I see the rest it


Saturday 16th of January 2021

Thank you for this wonderful post, it completely lifted my spirits! I laughed WAY TOO HARD at the ‘tips’ section.. ‘no stabby stabby.’

Breanna Cates

Saturday 4th of April 2020

I recently cut my own hair... ANDDD it turned out GREAT!<3 I love it soooo much .. it made my hair healthier- the thing supporting my idea was obviously Covid-19 - since there is no Hair Salons open:)

Debra Rouston

Friday 15th of April 2016

I've been cutting my own hair for years now. I like it short and choppy so mistakes are easily "hidden". I don't like going to the beauty parlor because they pressure me to buy their products (I already use good products) and never give me a good cut. My hair takes 5 minutes to do, sometimes 10. I also let myself go grey. It's mostly in the front with a little salt and pepper. Love it! Try new things....keeps it interesting.