Hair Answers: Cutting your own fringe

Posted in Answers, Celebrities on September 29th, 2010 by Reagan

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Q by Tracey: I know it’s best to leave hair cutting to the professionals, but my bangs grow sooo fast and I’m always tempted to give them a wee trim myself. ¬†However, every time I take the scissors to my straight, typical Asian hair, something terrible happens to my bangs. ¬†Are there any tips you can share for trimming bangs?

A by Reagan: Sure! Just don’t tell your stylist I told you though, because there is still a chance you might totally wreck your bangs, and I don’t want to be the one to blame! Just so we’re clear, I’ll do anything to avoid blame.

While I say to my clients, don’t cut your own bangs, I also understand that the whole thing is similar to telling teenagers not to make out. They’re all “sure, sure. making out is bad and I believe you a lot. So, not gonna make out. Promise.” but then like half an hour later and a few slow songs and they’re totally hard core making out. Just like bangs. Did that analogy work? No? Ok, cutting your own bangs is like a ship, sailing out to sea… It’s not like that?

Ok, don’t cut your own bangs. Please. But if you insist, here are a few tips to keep in mind.

~Parting them off precisely is very, very important. Like, important enough that I should say the eff word somewhere in that sentence. When someone comes in red handed and ugly banged, the first sign is a really funky part. Suddenly there are all these long hairs or weird pieces added to the bangs that just don’t belong. Part off your hair properly with a comb, then clip the hair that isn’t going to be cut aside.
~Cut them dry. Wet hair is longer than dry hair. And you’re like “wow I’m so good at cutting hair, my bangs look rad”. And then your hair dries and you’re like “wow, my hair looks like a 5 year old cut it with plastic school scissors”.
~Cut a little at a time. One swift swipe of the sheers will likely send you to immediate tears. Little by little, my friends.
~Point cut them. Don’t hold your sheers horizontal. Hold them vertical. Cutting blunt is going to show all of the mistakes you’ve made. Point cutting gives a softer, more blended look. Which brings us to…
~Do NOT go near your own bangs if you are rocking the very blunt look. Puh-to the-lease. Many stylists (me included) offer free bang trims to regular clients. People who aren’t my clients are only charged 10 dollars, which is really worth it.
~Thin them out. If you are planning on cutting your bangs often, you might want to invest in a pair of thinning sheers. Once you style your freshly trimmed bangs, I like to thin out the ends a little bit to give them that really soft, uneven (in the right way) look.

I think there is a code that whenever talking about fringe, a picture of Zooey must be near. (ps is zooey nekkid?)

Reese too of course.

I hate to do it, but I might have to do a bang trimming tutorial. We’ve already filmed a bang blow drying tutorial, and we’ll get that up asap.

Do any of you trim your own fringe? It’s time to come clean.

30 Responses to “Hair Answers: Cutting your own fringe”

  1. Michelle Says:

    Please please do a tutorial!! I would literally have to go to my stylist at least every 10 days if I never trimmed my bangs. They grow that fast. Not even exaggerating. I trim mine all the time, and I think it goes well about 85% of the time. When it doesn’t, I pin them back and wait a few days. No harm done!

  2. Lea Says:

    When I used to have bangs, I trimmed them myself the point cut way and I never had any problems!

  3. Tracey Says:

    Thanks, Reagan! Excited to try the point cut method when I “don’t” cut my own bangs tonight. I would also love a tutorial!

  4. melissa Says:

    oh yes, i’ve been doing my own bangs for years. i won’t even let stylists cut my bangs. (i’m obviously not going to the right stylists because they scare me.)

  5. Taylor K Says:

    Yes, I trim my bangs. I part them and cut them dry by twisting them all together in the middle of my face and then cutting them at about the middle of my nose. I find that this gives me a great length and a good blend of length. It also makes them a little longer on the sides so that it blends into the rest of my hair.

  6. Marie Says:

    I am not working right now but do hair for family and friends and I alway’s teach the one’s with bangs how to cut them and will even have them cut a little off with me there if they are pretty grown out. I just feel like it’s one of those things that they are inevitably gonna try and do it themselves so why not show them how to do it properly :) It’s really not hard to do if you have a stylist show you and most importantly take a little bit off at a time!

  7. Erica Rogers Says:

    I DO! I don’t cut hair anymore, but I do have a cosmotology license, so I justify it :)

  8. Ang Says:

    Ha ha ha ha!!!! I will freely admit it (to cutting my bangs ANd to making out as a teenager). I’m on board with the bangs tutorial. My stylist will thank you.

  9. Julie Says:

    I am so guilty of this! I specifically recall chopping my bangs in high school at my friends house-pretty sure they were awful-but what does a young gal hopped up on making out care? Turns out I would REALLY care now-thanks for the tips!

  10. amber Says:

    I just wanted to let you know that my hairdresser and I have a tradition. Once a week when I am getting my shampoo/blow out…I read your blog to her. (Really loudly, over running water and a blow dryer) we love it. She is fairly new at it, (2 years since school let out for her) and we love all the tips and tutorials. And btw. We love alexa chung too!!! You are our pretend bff. And when we are all caught up on HDOF we gush over PIP. I comment all the time, but just wanted you to know we luh. Luh. Love ya!

  11. amber Says:

    Ooooh update. She told her boss about this blog…and he showed the other girls the tutorials! How fricken awesome are you? FAMOUS!

  12. bigfanofHDOF Says:

    oooohhh… that pic of Zooey makes me want to cut my bangs immediately!!!!!!

  13. Meredith Says:


  14. lt Says:

    Seeing Zooey in “100 Days of Summer made me get bangs. I don’t cut them, too chicken. And my stylist is right across the street.

  15. Em Says:

    Totally guilty. Zooey is a babe. Love her hair…and your blog.

  16. Jen Says:

    Dear Reagan,

    I’m getting very very close to cutting my own bangs. Please help me. Is there a help line I can call? I’m writing from my phone hiding in the bathroom of the theatre with scissors. I had to spell check scissors. Like, twice. Anyway, I have no time to come in and time is running out. Especially in this weather. It’s not pretty. Please help me. I hear someone coming. More later.


  17. Carol Says:

    I must say that I am also guilty of cutting my own bangs! Then I hurry and wash the evidence down the sink so no one knows my dirty secret. One time I read in a magazine to twist the bangs into a coil and then cut it like that! OH THAT WAS A BIG MISTAKE! Luckily I was also too chicken to cut too much off so a big crisis was avoided.

  18. cm Says:

    GIRL, I want you to know that I totally feel that we are bff. is that weird and stalker-ish?

    Anyway, I TOOK your advice and snipped at my bangs yesterday, holding the scissors vertical instead of horizontal.


    oh yes they do. thank you!!

  19. Becki D. Says:

    i don’t have bangs myself, but my poor lil Lauren sure wishes this post had existed all those months ago when I started cutting hers. oopsies.

    well, maybe this will help me get them straightened back out, at least!

  20. Amanda Says:

    Absolutely I cut my own bangs! One of my former hair stylists taught me about point cutting. Here’s the deal – while I get a cut/color every 6-8 weeks usually, my stylist is over an hour away (I live in a suburb of DC, and she’s in the city). Stylists down my way? Mostly not great. Mine’s worth the drive, but I can’t just “pop in” for a bang trim in between.
    Awesome stylist = fair trade for my occasional self-bang trimming. IMHO.

    Can’t wait to try out the technique in your bang drying video!! Mine are finally getting long enough that they CAN be swept to the side!

  21. Ann Says:

    um. could you PLEASE do a tutorial on how to curl your hair like Zooey’s?! Me and curling irons don’t really work well together, or should I say my hair and curling irons don’t work well together… either way. I’d really like to figure out a way to get some curl into my hair like that! (and to have it hold longer than 30 minutes would be nice)

  22. Krissa Says:

    yes yes and yes… i do trim my own… i have too like every week and a half or so… i have been doing it for almost 2 years i think… no problems… i defintely do them dry… and as you said dont do it horizontally… i dont have time to go to a hairdresser every week to get them trimmed… i wish i did… but i seem to have it down so far…
    I LOVE this blog…just saw it from a friends…

  23. Rachel Says:

    Please, PLEASE post a tutorial on how to blow dry bangs!! I love bangs but am having so much trouble with mine. I want them to look hip and I’m afraid they look blah. Thanks!!! Love your blog!

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  25. Cattie Says:

    Please please please do a bang cutting tutorial! I’m trying to turn my grown-out sideswept bang into something more like the Zooey fringe. I’m so scared I’ll funk it all up, but I’m stuck in a tiny town for a few months away from my stylist and I don’t trust any of the salons here. Help? :)

  26. Sarah Says:

    I will ‘fess up to cutting my own bangs and making out…though i to be quite honest, i personally don’t feel as if confession is the right word to use as it implies an apology; but that is just me – being a teenager (:

    I have cut my own bangs and hair for as long as i can remember. I just don’t have the money to shell out that the places around here want. It’s crazy. I don’t have $45 bucks to drop every few weeks when i want to trim my fringe. So i’ve learned to do it myself.

    I think the tutorial would be great cuz i am honestly looking to change it up a bit. I feel quite confident to continue managing my own hair in the style i have got it in now, but in wanting to change it up, i want as much real input as possible before i try it.


  27. Miriam Says:

    I have to say I have always done my own bangs…and my mom’s and my sister’s.
    For some reason, we just never trusted any (ANY) hairstylist when bangs are involved…they never really understood how we wanted it. So I became the expert :) I have to admit I’ve become very good at it (Watch it Reagan, I may take over soon, lol)

    My trick is to never, never, under ANY circumstances cut your bangs wet. NEVER. And when in doubt leave it longer than you actually wanted it…then I have my own little secret techniques. In all honesty, I’ve always gotten compliments on my bangs – although I’ve been wearing them long for some time – like chin lenght.

  28. Nicole Says:

    I cut my bangs a la Taylor Swift tonight… took me three hours, but it worked out in the end! I think that it was mostly luck… I did cut vertically though because I remembered that hairdressers do that. I’m a poor student and haven’t gone to get my hair done professionally for quite a few months now!

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