Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Hair Cuts

Frankly, I don't want to write this post.  Why?  A great document already exists on the Facebook group Wavy Hair Community on this subject.  My post will only be a pale imitation.  Please go read the Wavy Hair Community file "Haircut Advice For Wavy Hair".  You must be a member to read it.  Not a member?  You should join.  It is a fun wavy hair group. You'd rather not join? Well, I guess you are stuck with me then.  After I finished writing this post, I wasn't completely satisfied with it.  But, it is the best I can do.  It has the key points for a wavy cut- long layers, no razor, no thinning.  I wish I knew more about cutting hair and could write a more complete post.

Long Layers
Layers help to show off your waves to their best advantage.  If your hair is one length, the top layers weigh down the under layers.  Your under layers can't wave as well under the weight of the top layer when your hair is all one length.  You want long layers (as opposed to layers that start higher on the head), because you want the top layer to be long enough to show the wave pattern. You want to get a few bends in before the first layer is cut. With chin length hair, the layers should start about eye level.  With hair that hits the shoulders, your layers should start mid ear to the bottom of the ear, depending on the length.  Longer hair?  I don't know.  I'll let you know when mine gets that long. :)

Where do your waves start?
If your hair doesn't start to wave until ear level (common for wavies) and you cut your hair to a chin length bob, you might not have much wave left.  You may end up with hair that looks mostly straight but likes to flip up and stick out at the ends.  

Face Framing Layers
You might want some face framing layers in front.  This will help bring attention to your face and show off your bone structure.

No Thinning Shears, No Thinning
If your hair is layered normally, all the hairs in one clump/one wave will end at about the same place.  The hairs will hang and wave together as a unit.  If your hair is thinned, there are shorter pieces within one clump. The shorter pieces may not want to hang with and play nice with the longer pieces.  The hair will not want to wave together  You will get little frizzy shorter hairs that stick out all over.

No Razors
Razors are split end makers.  If your hair is cut by a scissors, each individual hair is cut horizontally across the strand. When your hair is cut with a razor, each hair is cut closer to vertically down the strand.  There is more newly cut surface area if razored.  More newly cut surface area is exposed to the elements to be damaged.  The larger exposed cut area means hair is more prone to splitting.  With razor cuts, you get hairs cut at different, varied lengths, You get the same problems with waves not hanging together as described above with thinning shears/thinning.

Wear your hair wavy to the appointment.
Some people are visual learners and some oral learners.  I'd guess most stylists are visual learners, because they were drawn to a profession that involves visualizing hair.  If you go into the salon with straight hair, you will tell your stylist you normally wear your hair wavy.  But if s/he is a visual learner, the stylist may remember what they saw (straight hair), not what you said.  (This happened to me.)  Go in dressed in your normal style. You want the stylist to have a sense of your style.

Diva Haircuts
Deva trained hairstylists cut each curl individually.  Because this type of hair cut takes more time to complete and requires more training, it is more expensive.  Each wave will end exactly where it is best for your hairstyle.  Are Deva haircuts worth it for wavies?  It depends on several things.  First:  It depends on the skill of your particular Deva stylist (duh).   Second:  Does your hair always clump together the same way?  If so, a diva cut may be for you. If your hair clumps differently each time, you may end up with hairs of different lengths within a clump.  Third: Does your hair shrink a lot when it dries?  Deva haircuts are done on dry hair.  Some people have hair that shrinks different amounts in different places as it dries.  With a regular wet haircut, the layers can be even when wet, and uneven when it is dry. A Deva cut will have even layers when dry and wavy.  Fourth:  Do you alternate between straight and wavy styles?  If you alternate between wavy and straight styles, a Deva cut may not be for you.  The layers on a Deva cut may be even when wavy, but might not look even when styled straight.  I've never had a Deva cut and have no personal experience.

I came home from my haircut and it looks terrible.
It took (or will take) you quite a while to learn how to get the best out of your waves.  You can't expect your stylist to be as able to style your hair as well as you can style your own hair.   Also, some people find their hair freaks out for a few days after a haircut.  I don't know the science behind what causes hair to freak out. But, I've read enough reports about hair freaking out, I have no doubt this is true for some people.  Give your hair a few days and style it yourself before you judge your haircut.  If it is a terrible haircut, just remember that hair grows.  It isn't much of a comfort, but it is true.

My under layer is straighter and peeks out from behind my waves.
Have your stylist cut the straight under layer so it is the same length as the wavy layer directly above it when your hair is dry. When your hair is wet, the straight under layer will be shorter then the wavy layer above it.

See also:  Dorm Room Curly- Curly Cuts: How to Talk to Your Stylist to Get a Great Curly Cut  This contains tips on how to find a stylist and how to talk to your stylist.

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