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How to Choose the Right Hair-Dressing Scissors

How to Choose the Right Hair-Dressing Scissors

Are you looking for the perfect hairdressing scissors? It can feel like searching for a needle in a haystack. Finding the right hairdressing scissors can be challenging, with countless available options. 

Wouldn't it be wonderful if someone could hand you the ideal scissors tailored to your every need? Unfortunately, that's just wishful thinking. This mysterious someone needs to deeply understand your hairstylist journey to recommend the best hairdressing scissors for you. But fret not! There's a way to navigate this daunting task. By asking yourself the right questions and gathering essential information about your preferences, you can find the perfect hair shears tailored just for you. So, let's delve into the world of hairdressing scissors and discover the key factors to consider in your quest for perfection.

The Importance of Scissor Size in Hairdressing: Finding the Perfect Fit 

Choosing the right size of hairdressing scissors is crucial. Smaller scissors, typically ranging from four and a half (4.5") to five and a half (5.5") inches, offer precision when it comes to trimming hair. They excel at creating intricate and detailed cuts. On the other hand, if you're looking to implement more advanced hair-cutting techniques, longer scissors measuring six (6.0") inches or more are recommended.

However, remember that the blade size is not the sole consideration when selecting hair-cutting scissors. Factors such as blade type, handle design, and steel quality also play a significant role. Many hairdressers and barbers opt to purchase hairdressing scissor sets that include different sizes to cater to various cutting needs.

Choosing the Perfect Scissor Handle: Prioritizing Comfort and Care

Choosing the Perfect Scissor Handle

When selecting a new shear, handle configuration is a crucial factor to consider. The three main handle configurations are Offset, Opposing (or Straight), and Crane Handle. Each configuration affects the strain on your hand, wrist, arm, shoulder, neck, and back differently.

The Classic Handle: A Traditional Design with Limited Ergonomics

The Classic Handle Scissor

The classic handle design features aligned finger handles, representing an older style that has become less common in modern scissors. While this handle type is often utilized in training scissors due to its comfortable grip, it is recommended for short-term use as a primary shear.

Regarding repetitive cutting tasks, relying solely on a classic handle may lead to discomfort and cramping in your wrists and hands. This is because classic handles lack ergonomic components that help alleviate strain. Therefore, exploring other handle styles with enhanced ergonomics is advisable to seek prolonged comfort and optimal performance.

The Offset Handle: Enhanced Comfort for Effortless Cutting

Offset Handle Scissor

The Offset Handle design is the most prevalent choice among professionals, primarily due to its focus on comfort during cutting. What makes it so comfortable? The design enables your thumb and fingers to rest in a natural and ergonomic position, ensuring a pleasant cutting experience. With a slight bend in the handles, your thumb finds a comfortable resting spot, enhancing overall ease of use.

The offset handle design offers benefits beyond just your hand by providing comfortable placement. It promotes a more relaxed posture for your wrist, arms, and shoulders, reducing strain and potential discomfort throughout your cutting sessions.

The Crane Handle: A Unique Comfort and Posture Solution

The Crane Handle Scissor

The Crane Handle offers a distinctive and less common alternative than the 

more prevalent offset design. This design diverges significantly, providing a unique benefit for users – the ability to lay all your fingers flatter while cutting, allowing for a more relaxed thumb position.

The Crane handle stands out for its exceptional comfort, particularly for individuals dealing with shoulder and wrist injuries. It encourages an improved posture during cutting by requiring you to drop your elbow, ensuring the best possible alignment and reducing strain on your body.

The Swivel Shear: Unleash Thumb Mobility and Enhance Comfort

The Swivel Shear

Swivel shears introduce a revolutionary design element that grants unprecedented freedom of movement to your thumb during cutting. This is made possible by the unique construction of the shear, which allows the thumb ring to rotate. As a result, you can enjoy enhanced thumb mobility and flexibility throughout your cutting process.

But that's not all—the swivel shear design also offers additional benefits for your overall comfort. Accommodating a lower resting position for your elbow while cutting provides significant advantages to your shoulder, arm, and back. This ergonomic advantage can greatly alleviate strain and promote healthier working conditions.

Right or Left-Handed Scissors Designed for Your Dominant Hand

Using scissors specifically designed for your dominant hand is of utmost importance. Attempting to cut with scissors designed for the opposite hand can lead to discomfort and potential strain on your hand and wrist.

Left-handed scissors feature reverse blades that cater to the natural motion of a left-handed user. By utilizing these specialized scissors, cutting becomes a more natural and comfortable experience, significantly reducing the risk of hand and wrist pain.

Ensure that you select scissors that are specifically crafted for your dominant hand. Doing so allows you to embrace a cutting tool that aligns with your natural abilities, allowing for a seamless and pain-free hairstyling process.

Choosing the Ideal Screw System for Scissors

Screw System for Scissors

Scissors generally come with a flat or normal screw system, requiring a screwdriver for tension adjustments.

  • Adjustable Screw: Many individuals prefer scissors with an adjustable screw system as it allows manual turning of the small screw by hand for easy tension tightening or loosening.
  • Convenience: With an adjustable screw system, you can easily adjust the tension without needing a screwdriver, providing added comfort during use.
  • Tension Test: To check the correct scissor tension, fully open the scissors and let one blade drop freely towards the closed position. The tension is ideal when it smoothly stops at the ten-to-the-hour position.
  • Balanced Tension: The right scissor tension ensures a balanced and optimal cutting experience, contributing to comfort and precision.
  • Personal Preference: Consider your preferences and convenience when choosing a screw system, opting for one that suits your needs and allows easy tension adjustments by hand.

Scissor Maintenance

Proper maintenance of your scissors is essential to ensure that you consistently deliver professional, sharp haircuts to your clients. The quality of the edges of your hairdressing scissors plays a vital role in achieving outstanding results.

The frequency of scissor maintenance can vary depending on factors such as the type of blade (convex or bevel edge) and the intensity of use by professionals. Generally, it is recommended to have your hairdressing scissors sharpened and serviced at least once a year. However, entrusting this task to an experienced professional sharpening service is crucial to avoid any potential damage to your valuable tools.

In addition to professional servicing, it is equally important for hairdressers and barbers to maintain their scissors themselves regularly. This involves using oil and a cleaning cloth to keep the scissors in optimal condition. Regular oiling helps prevent rust and ensures smooth operation while using a cleaning cloth removes any debris or residue that may accumulate during use.

By following a consistent maintenance routine, you can prolong the lifespan of your hairdressing scissors, ensuring they remain reliable and perform at their best. 

In Summary: Choosing the Perfect Hairdressing Scissors

Having the right scissors is crucial for delivering your best performance in hairdressing. It enables you to select the size and shape of scissors that complement your unique hair-cutting technique.

Understanding the appropriate type of scissors that suits your specific needs is crucial to acquire the perfect pair. With the right scissors, you'll embark on a journey of happy hairdressing, achieving exceptional results with every cut.


Why is it crucial to find the right scissor for me?

Using the wrong shear can lead to various hand, arm, shoulder, neck, and back problems, including Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Tendonitis, Bursitis, and Rotator Cuff. On the other hand, the right shear can prevent or even alleviate these problems. Additionally, poor-quality shears require more frequent sharpening, resulting in higher costs.

What is the difference between lighter and heavier shears?

A wide variety of scissor styles are available, including weight differences. While some individuals prefer heavier shears, most stylists lean towards lighter scissors. It is essential to be aware of your preference and ensure that the weight of the scissor feels comfortable in your hand, providing a sense of control over the blade's tip. Notably, lighter shears may not cut thick or ethnic hair as effectively as thicker, heavier blades.

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