Texturizing the Hair
In hairdressing, the term “texture” is used quite frequently. It can refer to the size of the diameter of the hair shaft (fine, normal and coarse hair texture). It can be used in styling in terms of adding a product to make the hair feel thicker or stiffer (texturing gel or paste added to give firmness and definition to a style). It is used in chemical services that alter the wave pattern of the hair (which are called "Chemical Texture Services"). Lastly, we use it in hair cutting to describe techniques used to reduce bulk from a style or the hair in general.
It is this last application of "texture" that we are most concerned with here. There are many different methods of texturizing the hair, each serving a specific purpose and situation. These hair texturizing methods can be grouped into different categories. Let's examine these technique groups and see how they differ and where they are most effective.
Internal cutting typically involves shortening small sections of hair at some point along the hair shaft's length. This can be accomplished using various techniques. One of the most common methods is the "chipping method," where the shears are used freely to snip lengths of hair internally, removing bulk in a targeted yet random manner.
There is also the "weaving method" where the hair is separated into slices and a tail comb is used to weave out strands as if you were doing a foil highlighting, then the selected hairs are cut in a specific place. It allows more control than the chipping method, and can be varied by using different cutting angles.
Finally, the last method of "internal cutting" we’ll mention involves the use of specific thinning shears which are designed to remove a percentage of the hair rather than all of the hair that is placed between the blades. These shears have teeth instead of solid edges.
The amount of teeth the shears have determines how much or how little hair is removed, and whether or not it is removed in chunks. Fine-toothed thinning shears can be used readily on straighter hair types, while those that are meant to remove thicker chunks should be kept to use on curlier hair.
Internal cutting techniques work well for removing bulk from curly hair types. Curly hair needs to be blunt cut and often needs specific areas to be thinned in order to create the desired silhouette. Techniques and tools that glide along the hair shaft of curly hair can cause damage and lead to significant frizz, making internal cutting techniques ideal.
Smooth cutting is generally a thinning/texturizing technique used with straighter hair types. It involves running a blade along the length of a hair section to reduce bulk in a tapered manner. This is usually done using a razor tool that is simply drawn along the length of the segment from the point at which you want the volume to start to be removed.
The results can also be achieved through a technique called "slithering" or "sliding." In this method, shears are used with a slightly open position and drawn along the hair segment, lightly resting in the "V" shape formed by the slightly open blades. This technique requires practice and control because applying too much pressure or a sudden finger movement can result in cutting off the entire hair segment.
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