Layers gone bad can be traumatizing. It may be why so many are looking for DIY step by step help on how to cut hair in layers.
We watched tons of YouTube videos promising to reveal how to easily layer your own hair yourself. Most didn’t measure up.
But then hallelujah! We stumbled across this one by Sam Vay. And we agree with the commenters who said …
“This video was great! So informative! I hope everyone wanting to do this at home took notes.”
“One of the best videos I’ve ever seen for doing a layered haircut. Thanks for such a detailed description.”
“This was definitely the most helpful video for layering my own hair. I went through tons of videos to see what was the easiest way to cut my hair without making it look choppy. This is exactly what I was looking for.”
Suddenly layering your own hair no longer seemed like Mission Impossible.
Even better this is professional grade instruction designed for beginners. From a stylist who clearly knows her stuff and knows how to convey the techniques you need to know for giving yourself a long layered haircut.
So if you want to know how to cut long layers yourself keep watching.
What are long layers in hair exactly? Long layered hair adds movement and dimension to longer locks without sacrificing length. You’re usually only layering the top section of hair in the back to keep the fullness. The layers are typically cut in a few inches or less from the ends. You want them to blend seamlessly without any distinct lines.
Just remember, hair cutting requires more than a little skill and loads of practice. If you could use some more help why not check out other tips we’ve pulled together on layering your own hair all conveniently stashed in one place.
Okay so there are three parts to the process.
- Point cutting the long layers
- Frame framing layers
We broke the training into three step by step clips that focus on each of those to make it easy. Ready to go from blah to breathtaking?
How To Section Hair For Cutting Layers
What she shares is pretty much the universal technique for sectioning your hair.
Step 1) Part where you normally would.
Step 2) Part the hair ear to ear starting right behind the ear
You’ve now got your four sections.
Step 3) Clip the two front sections out of the way for now.
Your hairline follows a diagonal shape down the side of your head. That also means the hair in the back tends to be thicker and denser than the hair closer to your face. Worth keeping in mind.
Step 4) Section out the top section in the back.
Don’t gloss over this point. That top section is what you’ll layer. The underneath section will not be layered.
Typically you’re only layering the top section in the back for a reason. You’re leaving the section underneath one length to keep your hair looking full and voluminous. Yet you’ll still get the shape, softness and movement you want.
If you went for layers in the bottom section those layers would tend to look thin and stringy. Not what you want. You want the look of ultra-luscious, thick tresses.
The goal is to add some texture and subtle body to the hair that lives on top of the bottom section. All to release your inner hair goddess.
Step 5) Clip off the bottom piece of hair in the back to avoid accidently cutting hair down there.
Now you’re ready for the next step.
Layering Your Own Hair Using The Point Cutting Technique
This clip is the crux of the video. That is point cutting your layers into existence.
She describes the process of working with thin sections of hair that start at the highest point on the head like pie slices. Or what she calls “beach ball” sections.
At first I didn’t get the beach ball reference.
But a beach ball has color sections somewhat similar to the vertical sections you want to select for layering. They tend to start at the top, are somewhat narrow then flare out.
She shows exactly what she means by this beach ball section stuff on the mannequin’s head.
Step 1) Part out a thin pie slice section in the upper layer of hair in the back
Step 2) Comb out the first section and decide how high you’re going elevate it before point cutting.
This is where the angle you hold the section comes into play. It determines where the shortest layer falls.
The more vertical you hold the hair the more dramatic the layering will be and the shorter the resulting layers will be.
Yet when slid down to say a 45 degree angle to the back the longer they’ll be.
You can even over direct them forward towards the face if you want.
Just depends on the type of layers you want.
Tip: Did you know dramatic peaks and valleys in the layered hair softens the look?
Step 3) Determine where the shortest layer is going to come on your head.
Tip: Nothing new but still worth the reminder. Cut off less first and recut if needed.
Step 4) Point cut for better blending.
With this approach, you’ve got your shortest piece and it gradually gets longer from there. No choppiness. No distinct lines. The layers just flow and blend really nicely.
Step 5) Grab your next section and repeat until all layers have been cut.
Step 6) Point cut this new section using the one already cut as your length guide
Here’s where working with thinner sections comes into play. Narrow sections will let you easily find your guide.
Work your way around the back of the head taking successive narrow sections trying to hold each roughly the same angle you did the first one.
Tip: How do you know you’re at the right elevation? When your guide is a straight line parallel to the floor that the angle to cut the next piece at. When you see this in the video it may make more sense.
Step 7) Double check your work.
Hold up the shortest layers at various spots and make sure they are more or less the same length. Repeat with the longest layers.
Here’s How To Cut Face Framing Layers Yourself
Finally she moves to the hair in the front and what to do to keep it from ending up too short.
You’ll continue going with pie or beach ball sections that are thin and narrow.
The trick is how you elevate them.
These sections aren’t pulled up. Instead they’ll pulled or overdirected to the back and kinda use the shortest layers you just cut as you guide. I say kinda because you don’t want to go quite as short.
The finish is to slide cut the lower parts of the very front pieces all to get a little bit of face framing going on.
So that’s how it done.
Still unlike other videos she left out something. That would be telling you this isn’t going to be as easy as she makes it look without help. Either that or being good at working with mirrors. Just saying.
Of course you may still have questions. We answered seven frequently asked ones dealing with how to cut layers in hair yourself. It may be just what you need take the DIY haircut journey with confidence.
Anyway, I know you can’t swing a dead cat and not hit a horror story about getting hair layered. At least now you may have a better idea of how to take things into your own hands.
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