All you Need to Know About Thinning Scissors
June 15, 2021

All you Need to Know About Thinning Scissors

Getting a new haircut is always exciting. Whether it is to add more volume, get rid of dead ends, or even do a big chop! A new haircut can change your whole look and give you a confidence boost.

There are a lot of factors besides adjusting the length of your hair when getting a haircut to get the look and feel you desire. If you have ever gone to the salon and observed your stylist pick up scissors that look like they have a row of little teeth on one side, these are most likely thinning scissors. Thinning scissors are used by many stylists every single day.

Thinning Scissors

What are thinning scissors?

Thinning scissors are a special type of hairstyling scissor with one plain blade and the other blade with jagged teeth. These two blades work together to decrease the density of your hair and blend sections to achieve your desired look. Thinning scissors are often used on thicker and courser hair to thin it out and thin hair to blend sections.

They can thin out hair without removing excess hair because the teeth on one side of the blade give it the ability to remove less hair than a typical shear with each snip. Thinning scissors are a vital factor when achieving some of the best hairstyles.

Main goals of thinning scissors:

  • Blend sections of hair together.
  • Removing unwanted/excess hair.
  • Softening hairlines.

There are three main types of thinning scissors:

  1. Texturizing & Blending: 20-30 teeth
  2. Removing Weight: 6-12 & 30-40 teeth
  3. Finishing: 14-20 teeth

Texturizing & blending and finishing thinners are very similar. They both have many teeth with minimal space in between them with V-shaped edges. These characteristics give hair a softer, lighter, and more even look. It prevents the look of a harsh and blunt cut.

Thinning scissors for removing weight have way fewer teeth with larger spaces in between each one. With each cut, more hair can be removed. This will create an airy and lighter look and feel for the hair.

How to use thinning scissors

Step One: Type of Hair

After using regular shears, it is time to start cutting with thinning scissors. Determining the type of hair, you are going to be working on is important when choosing what type of thinning scissors, you are using and how you will use them.

For thicker hair, thinning scissors are great for removing chunks of weight and decreasing the density of the hair.

For thinner hair, thinning scissors are great for blend sections of the hair into one.

Step Two: Type of Thinning Scissors

There are three main types of thinning scissors each with a different use.

For blending and texturizing, it is best to use thinning scissors with smaller teeth. Smaller teeth allow for smoother and even blending preventing blunt cuts. Texturizing scissors will typically have about 25 or more teeth and finishing thinning scissors will have between 14 to 20 teeth.

For removing weight on thicker hair, it is best to choose a thinning scissor with wider teeth. These types of shears will have about 6 to 12 teeth. Shears with wider teeth allow for more hair to be cut when removing excess weight in the hair. Allowing it to be lighter and more manageable.

Step Three: Use

Once you have determined the hair type and type of thinning scissors you will be using, it is time to begin cutting! First, make sure you have a good grip when holding thinning scissors. How you hold the scissor and having proper form makes cutting the hair easier and more comfortable for yourself. To do this we will be using the method called the Traditional Western Grip. It is a common method used and loved by many stylists.

How to hold thinning scissors:

  1. Place your ring finger in the top and smaller hole.
  2. Place your thumb on the bottom and larger hole.
  3. Rest your pinky finger above the ring finger on the handle hook.
  4. Next rest your middle finger, then your index finger along with the handle.
  5. Use your thumb to open and close your thinning scissors.

Using Thinning Scissors for Blending

  1. Before you begin blending, make sure the hair is dry.
  2. Comb or brush through the hair to remove any tangles.
  3. Find the hair located in the middle of the two sections you wish to blend using a comb or your index and middle finger.
  4. Using your thumb, open and close the thinning scissors in one smooth motion.
  5. Repeat steps 1-4 until you reach the middle of where the two sections meet and have achieved the desired look.

Using Thinning Scissors to Remove Weight

  1. First, remove all knots and tangles from the hair and comb straight downwards.
  2. Find the section you desire to thin out using a comb or your index and middle finger.
  3. With the thinning scissors in your dominant hand, place the scissors one to two inches above your fingers or comb and towards the direction of the hair growth.
  4. In one motion, open the scissors and glide them down to the ends of the hair. The motion should mimic gliding a comb through your hair.
  5. Repeat steps 1-4 until you have removed all unwanted weight from the hair.

Using Thinning Scissors at Home

While it is always recommended to consult with a professional first, you can use thinning scissors at home to maintain your haircut. There is always a risk when attempting to cut your own hair.

  1. Use a mirror or grab a helping hand to help you as you cut your hair.
  2. Follow the instructions above for blending or removing weight.
  3. Be sure to focus on each section at a time and work in small sections to thin out your hair.
  4. Every 3 to 4 months is a great timeframe for when you need to refresh your haircut.

Thinning scissors allow for many different haircuts to come to life due to their versatile uses and types of scissors there are. From creating a soft, airy look with volume to a natural blend. Thinning scissors complete the haircut and put all the pieces together for the perfect look!