Cutting Technique with Placing Fingers

Hairdresser placing fingers on the client's cheekbones and sideburns
Photo: Pixelshot/Canva
Q: When getting my hair cut, my hairdresser always puts one or two of her fingers on the sides of my forehead, my cheekbones, and/or my sideburns. What is the idea behind this? Why is she doing it? My hair is short.
A: Short haircuts like pixie cuts and men's cuts are great options for those who want a low-maintenance cut that's easy to style. However, getting a short haircut can also be daunting because any mistakes are more noticeable.
To make sure the cut is even, symmetrical, and precise, hairdressers often use special techniques with their fingers. They often place their fingers on different parts of the client's head, such as the sides of the forehead, the cheekbones, or the sideburns. These techniques serve multiple purposes, and can drastically enhance the quality of a short haircut.
One of the main reasons hairstylists put their fingers on the sides of the forehead or the cheekbones is to visualize a guide for the length of the haircut. This is important when working with short hair, as even small variations in length can be noticeable. By placing their fingers on these areas, hairdressers can visualize a guide for the length of the haircut, which guarantees that the hair will be cut to the desired length.
Another reason hairdressers put their fingers on these areas is to create balance between both sides of the head. When cutting hair, it's essential to make sure that the haircut is even and that one side doesn't look longer or shorter than the other. By using certain points on the sides of the forehead or the cheekbones as a reference point, hairdressers can create a symmetrical look that is consistent on both sides of the head.
Hairdresser putting fingers on the client's forehead
Photo: Pixelshot/Canva
Additionally, placing their fingers on these areas and also on the sideburns allows stylists to double-check their work. Cross-checking is an essential step in making sure the haircut is even and consistent. After cutting the hair on one side of the head, the hairdresser will move to the other side and put his or her fingers on reference points to check that the length is the same on both sides. By doing this, hairstylists can identify any areas that need additional trimming or adjustment and make sure that the haircut looks as good as it can.
Hairdressers with a lot of experience sometimes develop their own hair cutting methods to make cutting hair simpler and faster for themselves. They then use techniques that they were never taught in cosmetology school, and it can sometimes be challenging for someone unfamiliar to comprehend why exactly they do certain things. The most important thing, however, is the final outcome of the haircut. If it looks good, then it doesn't matter what "strange" things the hairdresser did.
See also: How to cut hair