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How to hold hairdressing scissors like a professional

June 16, 2022

When holding professional hairdressing scissors there really is no art to it, you just simply have to understand the design of the finger rest and know where each finger should rest. Holding your scissors incorrectly can really make your whole cutting experience feel awkward and may even cause injury or hand fatigue down the track.
So although it is not rocket science on how to hold your hairdressing scissors, it is most definitely important when handling hair cutting scissors. 
When you hold cutting hair scissors compared to normal everyday household scissors then that is a completely different process. 
We know that when you first start cutting hair that it may all seem strange learning how to hold your scissors correctly, but we say it is not rocket science because once you are shown the right way, it's almost like a light bulb goes off in your head. To hold your scissors any other way after being shown the correct way. will just not make sense to you now.
So let's get into it and hope for light bulb moments.. left .. right .. and center, because every Professional hairdresser deserves to know the right way to hold hairdressing scissors. 
How to hold hairdressing scissors correctly
Let's get straight into how you hold your hairdressing scissors correctly shall we..
  1. Firstly let's hold out hairdressing scissors horizontally with your left hands holding the blades shut (if you have right handed scissors) or your right hand holding the blades (if you have Lefty scissors).
  2. Secondly let's check the finger rest part of the handle is at the top and the second single lonely finger hole is at the bottom.
  3. Place your pinky on the finger rest, ring finger in the top finger hole and your next two fingers in the grooves or just comfortably next to you ring finger.
  4. The bottom finger hole is where you place your thumb.
It's really important to hold your scissors correctly while cutting because as I mentioned above, you can cause injuries to your hand and wrist over time.
There has been a lot of thought and technology behind the design of your professional hairdressing scissors, so if you're not holding them correctly then you're not experiencing the full ergonomics of your hairdressing scissors true design.
Let's go through an example of this..
If you are a customer that has brought Swivel Shears due to RSI or Carpal Tunnel syndrome related injuries then in order for you to get your full potential from these shears, it is crucial that they are held correctly. Now we understand that if you're advanced enough in your career to develop injuries then you would have learnt by now to hold your scissors correctly, but there are some out there that still may not hold hair cutting scissors correctly.
Finger inserts
The purpose of finger inserts of finger rings for your hairdressing scissors is to create grip and comfort so your scissors don't slide through your fingers while you cut hair.
Finger rings are normally packaged up when you purchase new shears. When fitting your inserts a way to have your insert fit properly, is to put the insert in hot water but not boiling and let them sit for 5 minutes.
Next you get out the finger rings and place them on a paper towel to get all the excess water off.
Then place the finger inserts in the finger holes and mold your fingers to the finger holes.
If you find that your finger inserts are too small, meaning you cannot put your fingers through them once they are in the finger hole, then you can find larger finger inserts at your local salon supply store.
Holding your scissors with a comb
So you have mastered the correct way to hold your scissors and that's great! But what about that comb?
I remember the first time I picked up a pair of scissors (after holding them correctly) the most confusing part was where or how do I now hold my comb?
Well the short answer is that you use your comb in both hands depending on how you are using that comb for throughout the haircut.
When combing the hair straight to cut it you multitask by holding your comb in the same hand as your scissors and when you're ready to cut you swap that comb over to the other hand to hold while you cut.
This may all seem very complicated and confusing but with practice and watching the motion performed by someone else, in time this will become second nature for you.
 
So now we can all probably agree how important it is to hold your scissors correctly. It's also important to have the tension right on the hairdressing scissors and to have the finger insert fitted correctly.
Comfort is everything in hairdressing and without it, your days will be longer and early injuries in your career could be near. Your hair cutting scissors are by far your most important tool in your kit, so if your most used tool is not comfortable to use then what is the point?
Learning to use your tools correctly and even maintaining your tool that we have always educated our customers in other blogs is just as important in your career then learning how to cut hair too.

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