As you can see, I needed a haircut rather badly.  I had left my clippers back home in London so I had to go and buy a new hair cutting kit.  I thought that after many years of cutting my hair, I would share a few important tips.  If you do it right, it’s better than going to a salon.  If you do it wrong, well, you’ll end up bald.  Here’s what you need to know to be prepared:

1.  Be ready to mess it up.  It’s very easy to forget that you have the short trimmer attachment on and take a big chunk out accidentally.  If you’re like me, it’s not a big concern because the worst case scenario is a close buzz cut which looks pretty good.  Just make sure you’re prepared to go buzzed before you power up the clippers.

2.  Get two with mirrors.  You might think your new cut looks great, but without two mirrors, you’ll never know.  The back is just as important as the front.  The easiest thing to do is look into a hand mirror with your back to a big bathroom mirror.  It can be tricky, but with practice you’ll be a pro.

3.  Go slowly.  Start with the big attachment, like 1″, and work your way down to the little ones.  You might spend an hour cutting it, but it’s better than ending up with a do you don’t like.

4. Clean up.  Cutting hair is really messy.  Hair gets on everything.  Make sure you remove anything sitting out in the bathroom, like toothbrushes, take off most or all of your clothes, and have the broom and vacuum on hand.  When you’re done, clean the bathroom, then take a shower or the hair will go everywhere.  It’s just common courtesy.

5. Don’t worry about it.  It’s just hair.  It’ll grow back.  If you don’t like it you can cut it again tomorrow.  It doesn’t matter.  Just remember: if everyone else spends as much time thinking about themselves as you spend thinking about yourself, the no one else has any time to think about you.  So do what you want.

For some reason there is a stigma about cutting one’s own hair, as if only the poor and style-less would stoop so low.  I may be poor, but the reason I have cut my own hair so many times is because hair stylists never got it right.  I’ve gotten pretty good at cutting mine, so good that other people even let me cut theirs.  With some courage and some practice you’ll get exactly the cut you could never describe to your barber.


Not bad eh?  My apologies for not smiling.  I’ve learned that I’m unable to take my own picture without complete concentration, hence the mug shots.