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NEED TO KNOW: The Razor Cut Misunderstood

Razor Cut Lob by Matt Fugate

The Chainsaw! Just the word itself brings the thought of a very loud heavy menacing lumberjack tool, made for gnawning and tearing through mountainsides, decimating every tree in its path. Or you think of running for your life out of a small town in Texas because you’re being chased by a chainsaw-wielding murderer….. But have you ever thought of the chainsaw as a tool used with finesse and pinpoint precision? Well, the next time you see a breathtaking ice sculpture, keep in mind that a chainsaw created that beautiful work of art. 

Blonde Waves by Matt Fugate

I set this scene because I have found that in our craft of hairdressing, the razor can be viewed the same way as a chainsaw. The look I  see on clients’ faces when I reach for my razor is one of shock and awe, causing them to pull away and say, “Oh please don’t use the razor on my hair!” or “I’ve had the razor before and it ruined my hair!” etc.  And to be honest, when I hear about their experiences with razors, I shudder and understand their fear….

Razor Cut Long Waves

Most use the razor in a mindless fashion, like the lumberjack, clearcutting the hair without remorse, and yes—some do murder the hair with it as well. But the razor, when used correctly, can create the most amazing, seamless and soft hairstyle—one that a pair of scissors cannot replicate. So, to help you understand and hopefully appreciate this mysterious tool, I’ve rounded up a list of do’s and dont’s when it comes to using a razor: 

Razor Cut Lob by Matt Fugate

  • The razor should only be used after advanced training and used with the utmost respect. It is not a “texturizing” tool like that of its guarded counterparts…(I do not use a texturizing razor).
  • The razor should only be used on hair that is extremely wet, or lubricated with cutting agents like that of leave-in conditioners. This makes sure that the blade glides through the hair and doesn’t pull.
  • When moving the razor through each section, it should be sharp and gentle, the client SHOULD NOT feel the hair being cut.
  • The styles created with a razor result in the hair feeling softer, due to the fact that the cortex of the hair has been shaved down to it’s desired length; not cut blunt between 2 blades of the scissors.
  • The razors movement is very important, for the hair will mimic the way it is cut.
  • The razor CAN change the texture of your hair for the better, allowing the hair to style itself.
  • The razor should not be used on super curly hair, if used wrong it can compromise the curl pattern.
  • One should use caution when using it on super blonde hair, as the elasticity of the blonde is already at its max so you have to be mindful of how much your pulling on the hair.
  • The razor does not cause split ends unless the blade being used is dull….the blade should be changed after EVERY haircut.
  • The razor, if used on dry hair, will tear at it, creating a shattered effect.
  • You CAN cut precision blunt lines with the razor.
  • The razor makes your hair easier to curl and set, as the ends are soften and want to naturally wrap around the tool.
  • Razors are amazing for cutting fringes as they lighten the ends and remove weight.

Essentially, the razor is a magical tool that can broaden your horizons as a stylist and allow you to create genius looks on your clientele, but there’s no denying that its mastery requires a certain level of advanced education. Invest in yourself, and in your craft. And as a client, don’t be afraid if your stylist pulls out this tool—it can create a gorgeous effect when placed in the right hands.

Follow @mattshair for more #manespiration.

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