Basic Concave Layer

How to cut a basic concave layer haircut
Step by step guide on how to cut hair with the basic concave layer technique, from Stacey Broughton,
This technique will help you with your body positioning when cutting and understanding layering. It's also great for textured hair. Master this shape and you will reap the benefits!
Concave layer - before the haircut
Before: Monica before the cut and colour.
Concave layer haircut - How to begin the cut
Step 1: Begin the haircut on the right hand side. Take a diagonal section from the recession to just in front of the ear. Use even tension, over-direction and pull the hair forwards and up, angling your fingers towards the hairline, and cut a line from short to long. Notice that Stacey chooses to stand on the left of the model whilst executing his right hand side.
Concave layer haircut - How to cut for correct balance
Step 2: Repeat this process on the second side, again standing on the opposite side. Working these two small sections first ensures correct balance from the outset.
Concave layer haircut - Check the balance of the cut
Step 3: Check the balance technically and visually.
Concave layer haircut - Cut with over-direction and elevation
Step 4: Return to your initial side and cut the next section, using the previous section as a guide. Again, use over-direction and elevation and pay attention to the angle of your fingers.
Concave layer haircut - Cut the second section
Step 5: Then cut the second section on the other side.
Concave layer haircut - Cut alternating sections
Step 6: Continue with this alternating pattern until you reach the back. Working with alternating sections ensures accuracy of technique. Please note as Stacey works behind the ear, the section lengthens to include the back hairline.
Concave layer haircut - Sections are curved into the nape area
Step 7: Please note that the sections from the front through the side are diagonal and curved into the nape area. These sections will become more vertical as you work into the back.
Concave layer haircut - Cut with an angle reflective of the head shape
Step 8: Please note that as you move around the head, your angle is reflective of head shape. Notice how Stacey also decides to divide his longer sections for ease and accuracy.
Concave layer haircut - Check and refine balance
Step 9: Remember to constantly check and refine the balance.
Concave layer haircut - Cross check the cut
Step 10: Just before the final section in the back, you should crosscheck your work.
Concave layer haircut - Cut with a concave shape that pivots
Step 11: Next, cut the final two sections in the back on both sides. Notice that Stacey's elevation and over-direction in the bottom part of the section is severe, to maintain length. This ensures that the concave shape pivots from a shorter point in the front to a longer point in the crown. This guarantees that the outline lengths remain long.
Concave layer haircut - Refine the connection between both sides
Step 12:
Crosscheck though the centre-back, using the same elevation. This refines the connection between both sides and removes corners.
Concave layer haircut - Use free hand cutting technique
Step 13: Next, refine the perimeter in the front, using free-hand techniques.
Concave layer haircut - Cut the top section
Step 14: Now, begin work on the top section. Use horizontal sections from the parting and stand behind the model. Use a guide from the first side area and cut a concave section from short to long, elevating and over-directing the hair. Use the position of your fingers to determine the angle.
Concave layer haircut - Check cutting angle
Step 15: Please note that the concave connects on the parting side and does not connect on the other side. Check the angle visually.
Concave layer haircut - Cut parallel sections
Step 16: Continue with parallel sections through to the crown, using the same elevation and over-direction and your previous section as a guide. Please note that the parallel sections take into account the roundness of the head and the angle increases towards the back.
Concave layer haircut - How to dry the hair
Step 17: Now dry the hair. Dry the underneath first, then work diagonally from front to crown so the dryer is directed down the cuticle.
Concave layer haircut - How to iron the hair
Step 18: Using Coriollis C2 irons and diagonal sections which mirror the outline, iron the hair ensuring a bevel throughout the perimeter. Please note that Stacey is particular with his temperature control, dependent of hair quality.
Concave layer haircut - How to soften the shape of the cut
Step 19: Now use appropriate free-hand techniques to soften the internal shape.
Concave layer haircut for long hair
Finish The result is a traditional, basic concave technique, refreshed for the modern climate by use of disconnection. A great teaching tool for body positioning and finger angles.
Text and photos by MHD. Subscribe to view the training video!