Brown haired man with a messy pompadour quiff and a fade

How to Cut Your Own Hair At Home for Men

Find out the tools and techniques you'll need, along with some important tips for doing it yourself.

Men who keep their hair short will usually need to visit the barbers at least once a month. But with most of us stuck at home self-isolating, you might be starting to think about taking matters into your own hands and cutting your own hair.

Cutting your own hair is no simple task. One little mistake and you risk leaving your hair a complete mess, so don’t be surprised if you don’t nail it on the first attempt. Only time and patience can help you do a good job and to do this, you’ll need the right tools and to follow the steps below.

What Do You Need?

  • A towel to wrap around you
  • Scissors
  • Hair clippers
  • A broom or vacuum cleaner to clean up afterwards

How to Cut Your Own Hair

  • Step 1: Detangle your hair completely.
  • Step 2: Start at the top and take a lock of hair.
  • Step 3: Use your fingers to hold the hair and measure how much you want to cut off.
  • Step 4: With the other hand, use the scissors to cut the ends of the hair.
  • Step 5: Cut the hair shorter on the sides of the head for shape.
  • Step 6: Select the hair clipper length.
  • Step 7: Finish using the hair clippers on the sides and sideburns.
Brown haired man with a quiff and short shaved sides
Credit: Rupert Laycock

Tips for Cutting Your Own Hair

  • Place a cloth or towel over your shoulders to avoid getting hair all over you.
  • Stand in front of a large mirror to make it easier when cutting your hair.
  • If you have one, use a smaller shaving mirror to help you do the back.
  • Be careful not to cut yourself with the scissors!
  • Allow yourself plenty of time – you don’t want to rush this.

Hair Clipper Sizes

Generally, male hair clippers have 8 combs or ‘guards’. The smallest is a number 1, which would be a very short cut, up to a number 8, where the hair is kept longer. As the comb size increases, the length of the strands increases. You may also have heard of a number 0 haircut – this is where the clippers are used without a guard on at all, giving a super short, bald shave.

  • Number 0 = 1/16 of an inch
  • Number 1 = 1/8 of an inch
  • Number 2 = 1/4 of an inch
  • Number 3 = 3/8 of an inch
  • Number 4 = 1/2 an inch
  • Number 5 = 5/8 of an inch
  • Number 6 = 3/4 of an inch
  • Number 7 = 7/8 of an inch
  • Number 8 = 1 inch

At-Home Barbers

Professional barbers and hairdressers have years of experience and know all the best techniques for cutting hair. Therefore, we’d usually recommend that if you’re cutting your hair at home to opt for the easiest, most foolproof cuts. But even if you’re feeling brave enough to take a risk, follow these tips and be very careful when using scissors and clippers on your own hair. Good luck!

Product Recommendations


Made especially for men, the TONI&GUY Deep Clean Shampoo clarifies the scalp and hair, removing product build-up and grease. This will leave your hair feeling clean, looking fresh and ready to style.

Looking for something to keep your hair in place throughout the day? The VO5 Matt Clay has a natural matte effect to help create hairstyles that require strong hold with a casual, non-shiny finish.

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