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When it comes to cutting hair, there are many tools available to stylists and barbers. Two of the most common tools are scissors and razors. Both tools have their benefits and drawbacks, and knowing when to use each one is an important skill for anyone who cuts hair. In this article, we will discuss when you should use scissors versus a razor to cut hair.


When to use scissors for haircuttingWhat are Scissors Good For?

Scissors are a staple in any hair cutting kit and it’s the first tool a stylist or barber likely learns with. They are a versatile tool that can be used to create a wide range of haircuts, from blunt cuts to layered styles for both men and women and short and long hair. Scissors provide more control and precision than a razor. So if the goal is a blunt, defined, structured hairstyle, such as a one length haircut or a blunt bob, scissors are likely the best choice.


What are Razors Good For?

Razors are best used for creating softer, more textured haircuts. Razors are especially useful for creating layers, adding texture and removing weight. Unlike scissors, razors can create a softer, more natural-looking finish that is perfect for a lived-in look. A lived-in style feels like someone has had the haircut for a while and it’s not fresh out of the salon or barbershop. Some haircuts such as shags, pixies and mullets benefit highly from using a razor.


When to use scissors vs. a razor for haircutting - curly hairWhat about Curly Hair?
Curly hair is a little tricky and controversial. Curly hair can be cut with either a scissor or razor, but the results really depend on the technique of the haircutter. Having control at the ends is key to prevent frizziness. Razors are often know to create texture so one might think razors are not appropriate for curly hair. However, if used with intention, razors pose no detrimental issues when cutting curly hair. Razors should be used to cut a soft line but not super textured. The lines should have some firmness to it with a definite line.

It should be noted that scissors are not totally free from frizz creation. Sometimes using scissors or texturizing scissors to create texture at the ends can result in frizz. So learning from a professional who has a deep understanding of cutting curly hair is your best bet for how and when to use scissors and razors to cut curly hair.


Can Scissors and Razors be used on Dry Hair?

It’s widely accepted that haircutting tools are best used when hair is wet. But what about on dry hair? While stylists and barbers have differing opinions, many agree that dry haircutting is acceptable in certain instances. If at the end of the haircut you realize something was missed, a little dry haircutting is appropriate. So using scissors and razors for finishing touches is okay. But in general, for the full haircut, wet hair is best.


When to use a razor for haircuttingWhat else to Consider?

When using scissors or razors to cut hair, it is important to use a sharp, clean blade. A dull blade can cause damage to the hair, leading to split ends and breakage. It is also important to use the correct technique when using these tools as improper technique can lead to uneven cuts and damage to the hair.


What about Hair Thickness and Density?

With regards to hair thickness and density, it doesn’t really matter. Razors and scissors can be used on any of these hair types. Again, it’s all about the technique. It’s good to note that razors are exceptionally good at removing weight and bulk in a more natural way but may not be as easy to use when it comes to thin or fine hair.

The main takeaway when it comes to whether you should use scissors or razors to cut hair is to ask yourself what kind of hairstyle you’re trying to achieve. You can create a bob with a scissor or a razor and you can get two totally different bob looks. Both tools are great and have their uses, but probably the best way to approach haircutting is to incorporate both for various areas of the haircut that would benefit from either tool. Knowing when to use each tool is an important skill for any stylist or barber which can help ensure clients receive the best possible haircut for their hair type and style.


JATAI provides innovative and professional quality beauty implements with world-class customer service and educational support. To offer great products as a master distributor, we seek out and select only manufacturers who demonstrate superior workmanship, the most advanced technology, and respected business core values of reliability, honesty and integrity. Accordingly, JATAI represents three major ‘workhorse’ brands that dominate within their categories. Feather, Seki Edge and Fuji Paper. JATAI Academy brings beauty tools to creative life. It’s the ultimate professional information resource where Education, Artistry and Trends CONNECT for Stylists and Barbers.

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Amanda Kimball - Hair Stylist
JATAI’S amazing online Academy allows you to get education at any time – totally when it’s convenient for you. It’s a great place to go if you are needing new techniques or refreshers. There are so many to pick from. I use it often to freshen up or learn something new.
Paul Vega - Master Barber, Stylist, International Educator
Jatai's Feather Razor is responsible for so many of the textured looks that I have achieved. It’s a tool that I teach with to so many hairdressers & students throughout the country.  You will find Jatai's Feather Razor in every Top Artist assembly of tools.  Respect to the Feather Razor!
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