How to do a Medium Crew Cut with Clippers and Scissors

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The medium crew cut is a very classic crew look that many men sport. You might also compare it to an ivy league crew or short crew cut. Crew cuts are very versatile and are generally short on the sides and back with a slightly longer top. The style is a popular men’s haircut and it’s easy to see why!

Crew cut hairstyles generally don’t have a very short taper fade and definitely not a skin fade. The hair is slightly longer than that. And because it’s more of a rounded look, it doesn’t have a flat top. It’s not a buzz cut either. You can do this type of cut on curly hair but you will have to pay a little more attention to details. Watch this tutorial taught by Russell Mayes and learn how to do a crew cut. Also, follow along with the transcript.

Medium Crew Cut Tutorial:


Welcome back to the JATAI Academy! Today we’re going to be doing a study on how to do a crew cut. So let’s get started.

So today we’re going to talk about doing a crew cut. Before we get started it’s good to know the differences between a typical crew cut and then just most masculine shortcuts.

A crew cut is basically a short back and sides and a little longer on top which is very common. But most short masculine cuts have a squarish shape, where a crew cut tends to have a rounder shape and tends to be a little shorter on top.

Now it gives you a lot of versatility. You can either go longer in the front and then blend that through or you can take everything kind of short on top.

Or it can be equal to the sides so you have a lot of versatility and a lot of variation. So what we’re going to cover today is we’re going to take everything short in the sides and back and we’re going to leave the top a little longer, a little longer here in the front as well. And then we’re going to comb everything forward and see what we got.


Classic Crew Cut Clipper Over Comb

So starting I’m going to start in the back and I can take a clipper and I can put a guard on it and I can run it up the back normally like I would taper most haircuts but today what I’m going to do is I’m going to work on my clipper over comb.

So doing some clipper over comb work, I’m going to make sure I comb everything straight down. And clipper over comb is about getting a rhythm of the clipper motion across the comb.

When I put the comb in, I angle it at whatever angle that I want my graduation to be, my taper to be, and then I just follow that up the top. Now when I first start there’s no guide so I’m basically just using the force to guess where I want my tapering to be and then I can use that as my guide for going to the left and my guide for going to the right.

So what that looks like is I’ll turn the clipper on, put the comb in, angle that out from the scalp at whatever angle that I think I need. And then that’s the angle I’m going to go up and then run the clipper across the comb.

And here I’m basically just guessing at what length I want this to be. I’m not being very discerning about how perfect it is. I’m just looking for the overall lengths and I think we can go a little shorter there.

So we’re going to take that a little shorter through there as well. And now as I start to go up the back of the head I want to fight the urge that I have of up and out because that’s most of my training is always short and up and out.

But a crew cut is up and over so it keeps that shape kind of round. So once I get my basic taper in like this then I can start to work one side or the other.

Now I’ve got my guide in the middle. I use that as my guide and then just cut this side off here. Now as I press the clipper against the comb I’m not using a lot of force. Right? It’s just very lightly tracing the comb.

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And I’m just going to follow that up and through. I want to make sure that I’m not holding my breath because if I hold my breath, I tend to make my hand shake. And when you’re using clipper over comb like this you want to keep as steady a hand as possible.

Working that up and through. Now once I reach the mastoid which is this bump right behind the ear, I’ve got everything cut through here like I want.

I’m not too worried about my blend right here. We’ll get to that when I start using my scissors. I’m just working on tapering everything down nice and smooth.

Once I get to the mastoid I’m now going to skip and go right to the sides. Now on my side I’m going to start here at the ear and I’m going to go short and work that straight up, work everything straight up.

I am tapering it in two dimensions here. I’m tapering it going from ear up and I’m tapering it from the front going back.

Now once I’ve gotten everything cut to the top of the ear I will then go through and blend at this angle and that angle is usually going to be parallel to my front hairline.

It’s going to be parallel to this hairline from the mastoid down to the corner of the hairline. So I’m trying to keep everything even and smooth because most head shapes arc down a little bit.

So if I continue that all the way through the back I’m going to end up cutting the crown too short and it’s going to make his head shape look funky.

So this ensures that I don’t cut my crown completely out of it. Check that out, see how we’re looking. I’m going to take a little tighter right down here in the nape.

Now once I’ve got the sides and the back done and I got my transition from the front to the back I’m going to go through and do the same thing to the other side.


Crew Hair Cut Scissor Cutting

So now we’ve gone through and we’ve shampooed our model. Gloriously I might say. Now let’s work on cutting the length on the top and blending that into the sides. If you’ve seen previous videos, you’ve seen me do a walking guide.

I’ll take the first section here on the side and I’ll cut that length. I’ll add the second section into the first and combine them and make one section.

So I have section one and two combined. Cut that into the center. I’ll remove section one. I have section two and three combined. Section three and four and four and five and so on and I’ll walk that guide length all the way around the back of the head.

I’m going to do the same thing here on the top, but I’m not going to take any sections. I’m going to do a very classic barber approach where I’m going to start in the front.

I’m going to pull the front back to maintain length and then I’m going to walk my guide all the way through in the back. And as long as I’m consistent about how much I’m moving each time going back I’ll end up with a nice clean line.

So I’ve got my section. I’m going to comb everything forward. I’m going to comb everything back to where I think the recession is or maybe a little bit further back.

I’m going to pull that up and then I’m going to go through and cut whatever length that I want. So now I’ve got my whole guide linked on the top.

I’m going to go to the left, cut that through and I’m rounding the shape out. Usually I keep that shape pretty square and I am using my Osaka Scissors from Jatai because I have a little bit more blade length and it’s got a little bit more weight to it so I can cut a thicker section of hair.

I don’t need to be real precise with it. Now I’m going to go back a finger length back, and I’m going to cut using my guide length from the front.

I’ll go a finger length back, cut using that guide length from the front. A finger length back, same thing and I’m going to keep going until I run out of hair in the crown.

As long as I’m methodical with how far back I’m moving each time, I’ll end up with a nice clean line. Comb forward again and now I’m going to start working on the left side.

I have two guides. I have a guide in the front and a guide in the center. And I’m cutting that following both of those two guides from the front and working that all the way into the back.

This is a very very quick fast way of going through and motoring through a lot of hair. I’m not worried about being real precise with everything. I just want to be very very methodical in my approach.

As I work that around, go through, we’ll check this out from the other angle.

Now I’m going to go through and do the same thing on the other side. So now after I’ve got all the top done, I’m not worried about blending on the sides right now. We’ll get that last.

But after I’ve cut the whole top I want to go through and cross cut it the same way. I’m going to pull everything into the center and any little bits that may hang out I’m just going to go through and trim.

And there’s not a whole lot because I was very very consistent with moving my fingers back at an equal distance every time. So just go through just cross check anything that hangs out.

There’s a little nibble there. I’m just going to go through and clean that up. This is just to make sure everything grows out nice and smooth.


Men Crew Cut – Blending

Okay so now that we’ve got everything cut on the top and blend that into the back, I want to make sure everything blends in my transitions from the top to the bottom.

So I’ll just take vertical sections. You can see where my tapering was and I’m just going to go through and make sure everything blends from the bottom to the top.

And I’m going to work that line up and over and blend in. Now if you feel more comfortable starting in the front and then working to the back that’s perfectly fine.

There’s no correct method of where you start versus where you finish. What ultimately matters is that everything blends and is proper and fits the head shape.

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And everything’s looking pretty smooth through there. If I find I got a little bit too much taper through there, I can go through and this works really well with my Osaka Scissors because they’re so much longer than the other scissors that I have. I’ve got that extra blade length that makes it easy for me to go through and scissor over comb.


Mens Crew Cut Fringe

Looking pretty good. Same thing on the other side. So all that leaves us now is to deal with our fringe in the front, our bangs in the front. So depending upon if I want this brushed up and back. Right? Very very collegiate that way.

Or I can have it much shorter and kind of combed over. There’s a lot of things that I can do to this. So it just depends upon how short you want this and what look you’re going for and how their hair reacts.

If they have a lot of cowlicks then probably longer is better so you can control it a little bit easier. So let’s go through and just keep it fairly long but I’m going to even it up so it doesn’t come to a point in the front.

So when I do that I’m going to take and I’m going to pull it out at that angle and then we’re going to go through and point cut this through. A point cut soft line is going to be much more pliable and movable than if I was to cut that blunt.

Blunt lines tend to not move as easy as soft textured cut lines. Just go through take a little bit of that corner off right there. Looking pretty good.

See that little corner right there. It’s very subtle but that subtlety will make a big difference.

The only other thing I might add is if the person has wavy hair or has a lot of cowlicks or they have a bunch of indentations in their head and their heads not smooth you may get some darkness and some lightness through there you can’t blend out very easily.

Tracing this Crew Cut for Men

Then I’m going to go through with my Tokyo Thinning Scissors. I’m going to put the cutting blade on the bottom and then I’m going to go through and just trace what was already cut.

I’m not trying to go back in and re-cut anything. I’m just tracing that previously cut taper that I put in through there and that will make everything mesh together and blend a lot smoother.

And this will also help with any kind of waviness that’s starting to stick out or kick out it will soften that line and like I said in the bangs it will make it much more pliable and much easier to move.

With my Tokyo Thinning Scissors take that little nibble off right there, that doesn’t want to act right. There we go. Much better. Looks pretty good.

We got a nice even smooth clipper over comb around the bottom. We got a nice round shape on top, a little longer in the front. You can puff that up. You can bring it down.

You got a lot of variety there that you’d like. You can comb it and make him look very very Wall Street or you can crop the whole thing up make him look very edgy.

Yes you need to look… well no maybe not that edgy. Well only on the weekend okay. Only on the weekend. Anyway, kind of looks like Kyle McLaughlin to me.

Check out the Jatai Academy. There’s all kinds of great information on there that’ll make you a better hairdresser, make you better barber. You can also check links below to find the scissors that I use. They’re fantastic and for the price it’s hard to beat.

Let us know what you’d like to see in the future and until then I shall see you next time. Thank you so much for watching!


Final Look of the Crew Cut Haircut

How to do a Medium Crew Cut - Final Look


A crew cut can complement any face shape and can pair with facial hair. The modern crew cut is worn by many boys and men for it’s versatile look. We hope this crew cut style haircut tutorial was easy to follow along and understand.


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