Imagine no more leaving the salon with a layered haircut you hate.
Imagine no communication frustration and not ending up on the wrong end of salon sorcery gone bad.
Imagine getting the epic results you want every time you feather your face framing layers yourself.
You can avoid all the craziness and disappointment when you become your own hair stylist. While not for everyone it’s something most can master. At least for doing some things like rocking a layered look.
But maybe you have no idea what we’re talking about here. So first …
What are face framing layers? They’re how to frame your face with cheekbone caressing, chin skimming, or collarbone kissing layered hair. These front layers start shorter and get longer as they go down the side of your face. Those who know how to angle the hair around their face at home can easily add pizzaz to any length. This stylish upgrade works with all textures and flatters all face shapes.
Want to know more? Here’s what we cover.
Quick Section Navigation
- VIDEO: How To Cut Face Framing Layers Yourself At Home
- Where Should Face Framing Layers Start?
- VIDEO: How Do You Frame Hair Around Your Face?
- Should I Get Face Framing Layers?
VIDEO: How To Cut Face Framing Layers Yourself At Home
Honestly, cutting face framing layers is easier than you might think.
This video dishes all you need to know about doing it yourself. Unlike other videos I watched nothing is left out. If you’re serious about this, this is the one to watch.
In end you get layers that soften your look without being choppy. Ready?
Before we get into the tutorial details three Public Service Announcements.
PSA #1: Don’t try this at home with any ole scissors you’ve got laying around.
The only way to get the results you want is with hair cutting shears. Period. Using anything else all but guarantees you won’t be loving the results.
Yet you don’t need pricey, high end, Japanese stainless steel hair scissors necessarily. But you do need something sharp enough to cut hair without gnawing through it.
PSA #2: When going DIY you want your hair to be either completely wet or completely dry. Don’t attempt this with some dry and some wet. You won’t be happy with the results.
If cutting wet having a spray bottle handy lets you take it slow – which is best for first timers.
PSA #3: How-to videos like this should be watched more than once so you get the nuances as well as the big idea.
With that out of the way lets dive in. As this graphic shows there are a lot of moving parts to this process. Something like 15 steps actually.
Please don’t be put off by the number of steps. It can look daunting. Or be a sign the tutorial is step by step thorough. Bet on the latter.
Step 1: MIDDLE PART your hair – even if that’s not how you part your everyday. The idea is to divide the hair evenly on both sides.
Then part your hair laterally from the top of your head down behind the back of your ears.
Step 2: CLIP THE HAIR IN THE BACK half up and out of the way. That way your attention is focused on the hair you’re layering without distraction.
It’s a good idea to establish a length guide. You can either just cut it or look for what’s the shortest length you’ve got going currently.
So the first cut you make wants to be shortest you want your layers to be.
Step 3: CREATE A TRIANGLE in the front by starting about two inches in from your hairline.
You’re going from the center part downwards at a 45 degree angle on both sides. The result as you can clearly see at timestamp 8:38 is a triangle shape just above your forehead.
Clip back the rest of the front portion of your hair to again keep it outta the way.
IMPORTANT: This triangle is going to let you establish your length guide.
Comb through and down from the center part you just made. Don’t pull this section of hair taut. Just keep a bit of tension on it with your fingers so it’s straight as you comb through it.
Step 4: SETTLE ON THE LENGTH
She went with an inch and a half below her chin as her shortest layer. (Be sure you get this – this is going to be your shortest length.) Squeeze down on this section of hair with your fingers so it doesn’t slip and slide around when cutting.
Remember your hair is wet. There is no harm in cutting it a bit longer so that when it shrinks when dry it’s not TOO short. In fact that’s a smart thing to do.
She then simply snips out a small piece in the center of this section. That’s it. Kinda surprising actually.
That tiny strand of hair is now her shortest length. It’s also your guide that will define the rest of your face framing layers.
Step 5: SPLIT THE TRIANGLE IN HALF so it’s parted in the center again leaving you with two sections. You’re going to trim each half in turn.
Step 6: CUT TO THE GUIDE
Take one half of the triangle, over directed to the opposite side, comb through and look for your guide.
IMPORTANT: Her index finger now points straight down to the floor. Snip along the finger up towards that tiny little section serving as your guide. This will give you an angled cut.
Half the hair in that triangle is not cut to the right length.
Step 7: REPART THE TRIANGLE including a small bit of hair you just cut so you’re getting some of the freshly cut strands to act as the guide for the other side.
Step 8: FIND YOUR GUIDE for this side.
Note that for the second side instead of your finger pointing down it’s pointed up towards the ceiling.
As you fan out the hair and comb through again look for the guide. At around time stamp 12:00 you can clearly see how she locates it. As before cut to the guide – cutting up instead of down.
Step 9: CHECK THE LENGTH by combing through the section of hair you just cut. You should see a second loosely defined triangle at the bottom. Trim as needed to make both sides of the triangle the same length.
Time stamp 12:35 or so shows how her two sides weren’t cut even and what she did to fix it.
Once this first cut is made you’ve now got your guide for the remaining front section of hair that you’re layering. Here’s what’s going on
- Release the rest of the front portion you’re cutting to create the layers.
- Check to see that your hair is still damp enough.
- Clip back the hair for one side.
- Comb through the remaining side combining the hair you just trimmed with the hair you just unclipped.
You should clearly see your shortest layer. This will give you an idea how much length you need to remove from the rest. At around 13:30 of the video she makes that super clear.
Step 10: DIAGONAL PART the hair on one side yet to be cut. You want to split the new section front and back going from the middle part to behind your ear clipping the back half up.
Again you want to over direct (which means to direct the hair past your center part) to the opposite side. Your guide will pop out.
Step 11: CUT UP TO THE GUIDE like before along your finger pointed vertically to the ground.
If you find there’s too much hair to hold flip back any already cut and focus on what’s yet to cut.
Interestingly your guide will continue to move down your hair as you go. So you can take a smaller section from what’s left towards the ear and the guide will still be there.
Step12: GRAB MORE HAIR and cut to the guide to continue the first side.
Time stamp 17:00 shows the guide and that she took too big of a section to easily hold onto. She lets loose of the part already cut to the guide.
Or you can cut a small section to the guide and comb again so you are always in control of what and how much you’re cutting.
Step 13: CLEANUP and finish up by grabbing the entire section on the side and clean up any hair remaining to be cut. (This is shown around time stamp 19:45.)
From 21:00 she tackles the other side – speeded up.
Step 14: FINAL LENGTH CHECK
She then compared both sides to make sure they’re the same or about the same length.
Step15: DRY AND STYLE
Finally she dried and styled to show off the gradual layers she created that shaped the cut. Reviving the cuts with layers that aren’t too choppy.
Anyway, that’s how to cut face framing layers yourself.
Hopefully this helps you dodge hugely disappointing, or worse, totally unmanageable layered haircuts.
Where Should Face Framing Layers Start?
Good question. Cause it’s important to know where your face framing layers should start if you’re looking to give limp locks some extra oomph and lift.
Actually there is no right answer.
Plus to a certain extent it depends on how long your hair is.
So the nose or cheekbones might be one starting point for some. These would obviously accentuate your cheeks.
Or you could go for layers beginning at your lips.
Others prefer they start at the chin or slightly below their jawline as the video above showed.
Just remember they’re meant to flatter your face. All the more if you feel the one length look is distracting from your amazing features. So you want the layers to soften your look without being choppy.
Yet with just a few snips of scissors you can produce layers that hit all the right spots. That would be layers to play up your cheekbones, chin and below in oh such a sexy way.
Ready to give ’em a try?
How Do You Frame Hair Around Your Face?
Obviously you want to stair step the length of the layers as they go down your face.
This is typically achieved one of two ways using either your fingers or a fine tooth comb.
The idea with either option is to use your fingers or the comb to hold the hair while you point cut the layers in.
You want your index finger or comb to be totally, like 100%, vertical with the floor. This causes the hair to be held horizontal position.
Then you either cut along your finger or you use the comb to hold the hair that is parallel with the floor and point cut from there. Cutting more near the top of the section and less at the bottom.
Notice that unlike the previous video she cut her hair dry for this face framing layered look.
Starting with a middle part, section an inch or two inches back from your hair line. Grab that with your comb with the teeth pointing away from your head. Run it down until you have the maximum length of hair you want to cut sticking out.
The comb should be vertical to the floor.
There are three basic steps here:
Step 1: ESTABLISH THE LENGTH Point cut into the hair sticking out from comb cutting more length from the top half and less from the bottom half. This will give you shorter pieces in the hair towards your face and longer with hair more away.
Step 2: ESTABLISH THE THICKNESS Again run the comb through the section leaving more hair sticking out. Here you’re going to point cut to remove weight and bulk from the ends as you slide the comb downwards.
Step 3: COMPARE AND TWEAK Grab in inch or so of hair from each side of your part and comb them together to see how well both sides match up length wise. If they’re pretty close good. If not even them out by more point cutting to get to more or less the same length.
Should I Get Face Framing Layers?
Who should get face framing layers?
I’d say this technique is right for anyone who wants to take their cut to the next level.
Or to their tresses a badly needed boost in the volume department.
Because as mentioned above they can do a lot. They work with
- any haircut
- short, medium or long lengths
- any face shape
- any texture
But face framing cuts go beyond that. They let you flaunt your best facial features.
They are also a great way to soften any haircut without sacrificing too much length.
Plus they get rid of weight, boost body, and can enhance waves.
Hopefully helps you justify a decision to get layers around your face.
Think it’s time to break out the scissors?
Want to set off your locks so they look gorgeous from all angles? Our Pinterest boards likely have the ideas, like these for cutting face framing layers, to make that happen.