How to cut and style fine hair - All about fine hair
TRUTH – Approximately 60% of women in North America have fine hair.
DARE – Become an expert in fine hair!
What is Fine Hair?
Let’s separate fine hair into two categories; low density and high density.
Fine hair is limp and more often than not lays flat to the head, yet all fine hair can be easily transformed to give the illusion of fullness and movement with great cutting and styling techniques!
Low density fine hair: hair shaft is thin and grows far apart. Think of a forest where
trees have a lot of space between them.
High density fine hair: hair shaft is thin and grows close together. Think of a forest where trees are close together.
- More than any other type of hair, fine hair needs to be cut on a regular basis to keep the shape in tack and ends looking full.
- Blunt cuts will maintain weight and bulk around the perimeter to create dimension and the illusion of more length.
- As fine hair tends to break, notch cut the ends for more of chiseled and chunky look to help camouflage any stressed ends – use a shorter shear for notching so you don’t go too deep into your sections.
- Keep layers long so there is more volume at the scalp and fullness at the ends
- Parting the hair at a diagonal back to the crown of the head will impart more volume than parting the hair straight back to the crown.
- Low density fine hair fares best with a shorter length to maximize movement and body or go for a short cut that doesn't require volume.
- Asymmetrical cuts automatically bring the eyes to the longer/thicker/fuller side of the head and the shorter/thinner side can be tucked behind an ear:
- Cutting a fringe can make fine hair look fuller, especially when hair is sparse at the hairline:
- How to Sell a Fringe:
- Twist Cut Fringe - Watch video >
- How to cut a full fringe without tension - Watch video >
- How to cut and finish a full fringe - Watch video >
- How to cut a short Fringe or the Michelle Williams fringe - Watch video >
- Statement Fringe - How to cut short full bangs - Watch video >
- How To Cut Angled Bangs:
- Style Fringe with Strong Growth Patterns - Watch video >
- How to bevel a fringe with your flat iron - Watch video >
Bring on the look of density by face framing
Our fine as well as thinning hair clients deserve a cut that will bring out their best facial features; after all, her face is what she is going to see in the mirror everyday. If we can bring the look of density to the facial frame of the cut we know our clients are going to love what they see in the mirror as an end result as well as every day at home.
We may tend to elevate up and cut certain lines around the face resulting in layers that fall away from the face. Our end result? The hair is less dense and the ends are light and wispy. Our fine and thinning haired clients are looking for more definition and blunt lines that give the appearance of thicker hair.
Instead of elevating, we can create defined pieces by free hand – selecting pieces at random but with a purpose to accentuate features of the face for a better visual end result.
Be sure to discuss the technique with your client in the consultation; why the technique will add definition and density. Compare the cut side frame to the opposite uncut side. Give the cut side some movement with your hand – she will immediately be able to see the difference and LOVE IT!
This framing technique is perfect for the client who has a naturally fine hairline and/or for the client who is experiencing thinning around the hairline. The technique is also great for the client who comes in for a cut that was over layered or over texturized from the last cut. The pieces you choose to cut will add needed definition to the frame and make the hair look denser.
Tools of choice:
Professional dry cutting shear:
Why this shear? - The power ridges on the back of the blades give the shear stability without pushing the hair away from the blades.
- Optional finishing tool – Professional Flat Iron.
Finishing product of choice:
- Redken wax blast 10 impact finishing spray.
Our model in the video already has a cut that is face framing but the ends are light and wispy. We want to simply add definition to her cheekbones and jawline:
- Comb the hair to its natural fall.
- Look for that ‘first piece’ of hair that falls along the face – for this model our first ‘piece’ will be cut to accentuate the cheekbone.
- Pinch that piece of hair with the opposite hand of your cutting hand.
TIP – The amount of hair you select in your ‘pieces’ is up to you – it depends just how much definition you and your client agree upon – the more hair you pick up in your ‘pieces’ the more definition you will achieve.
- Come into the piece from behind and ‘talk’ the shear (open and close movement) forward toward the cheekbone with the dry cutting shear.
NOTE – This may appear to be blunt once cut, keep in mind the hair is not going to lay on the face, the hair will separate with natural movement with soft ends.
- Pinch the next ‘piece’ and use the same technique to ‘talk’ the shear forward toward the jawline.
At this point, from the jawline, we approach longer length and have no facial features to accentuate so we will free hand – visually choose piece by piece – determine the pieces you want to define in the rest of the frame and blunt them off to create a strong frame as opposed to light wispy ends of the frame.
For the finish:
- Shake Redken wax blast 10 and spray into your hand.
- Evenly distribute into both palms.
- Work into the ends of the frame for definition.
- Allow the hair to frame and hug the face or use the Sam Villa Sleekr Iron to flick the ends of the hair up and out for volume.
Side swept fringe will allow for more versatility in styling
It doesn’t get any better than a classic side-sweeping fringe to flatter any face shape! The variations would include the length your guest desires, the consideration of the density of the hair and the desired amount of texture within the end result. As more and more guests inquire about fringe it’s important to own these three simple techniques to offer this timeless look.
We utilize the Sam Villa Signature Series Reversible Blending Shear for all the three techniques. This shear is the perfect choice for removing length, all while maintaining a soft perimeter edge. The 42 radial teeth will remove a good amount of hair and eliminates blunt lines. The “V” indents at the end of each tooth catch and hold the hair as well as add to the diffused line.
Fine hair needs weight to move and supporting our sections at a low elevation will ensure less removal of weight.
- For minimal tension and for cutting at low elevation use the wide toothed end of the Sam Villa Signature Series Cutting Comb in black for light hair or ivory for darker hair.
- Determine the natural part and comb the hair to the opposite side.
- Approach the fringe area from underneath and allow the hair to drop into the wide teeth of the comb.
- Move into the section with the teeth of the shear facing the face.
HOT TIP – When working with a blending or texturizing shear, the hair will be influenced in the direction the teeth are facing.
- Determine the amount of length to be removed and cut the line in simply by opening and closing the blade.
- End result is a heavy fringe along with a favorable soft edge and weight maintained for movement.
It’s all about the brush!
Round thermal brushes are considered the brushes of choice for adding volume and movement to fine hair. The Sam Villa Signature Series Thermal Brushes have 30% boar bristles and 70% nylon bristles.
Tourmaline Complex has been added to the nylon bristles for smoothing the cuticle and reducing static.
They are designed with hollow and slightly concave barrel cores to speed drying time by directing the hair away from the scalp so that the warm air from the blow dryer can be directed at the root area. Using the cold shot button on your blow dryer locks in solid volume especially on fine hair. The end result is smooth and shiny hair!
- For super short hair.
- Achieve bend and volume where need.
- For short hair
- Achieve increased volume and tighter curls.
- Select this brush to achieve frothy volume and tighter curls on shorter hair.
- For medium length hair, above the shoulder.
- Achieve increased volume and loose curls.
- Select this brush to achieve increased volume and loose curls on medium length hair.
- For longer hair, below the shoulder.
- Achieve smooth waves and flexible curves.
- Select this brush to achieve smooth waves and flexible curves on linger hair.
The importance of Nozzles
Nozzles are included with both the Sam Villa professional ionic blow dryer for concentrated airflow. They allow us to work smarter, not harder!
If you are serious about your finishing, you should understand the advantages of using a nozzle:
- Essential for drying long denser fine hair.
- The wider length expands the airflow and dries more hair faster.
- Essential for drying fringes and frizzy, wavy and curly hair.
- Concentrated airflow produces faster airflow resulting in a more polished finish.
Directing the airflow from the dryer with an attached nozzle from scalp to ends on a lower speed with a higher temperature will actually dry the hair faster without blowing the hair all over exposing the cuticle. End result is shiny hair with less frizz.
HOT TIP – If you are going for a more organic look with a little more volume, dry the hair 75-80% without the nozzle to rough up the cuticle then go back in and finish with thermal brushes.
Don’t suffocate the dryer by making direct contact with the nozzle and the brush. Keep the nozzle at least ½-1 inch away from the brush so you don't a) melt the bristles on your brush and b) damage the motor on your hair dryer causing it to overheat.
For more tips on why and how you should use a concentrator nozzle when blow drying hair, check out this video.
Styling product is not an option it’s a necessity!
Many fine hair clients shy away from product because they have been applying it incorrectly; to the surface of the hair, which makes the hair go flat. Good communication is the ace in your pocket and that's what keeps clients coming back for more!
Communication builds wealth… help the client get what they want and we get what we want.
It is not enough to simply apply the product throughout the hair without the specific objective in mind.
How many times have you heard “my hair never ends up looking as good when I do it than when I do it”. Your response - “are you working with the product I recommended as product is not an option but a necessity to achieve the best result?"
We, the professional have to understand the fabric… hair texture, and the end result to recommend the proper product for the right reason.
Successful finishing first and foremost depends on our own ability to continually analyze our work at each stage of the finishing process and on our ability to remain open minded as our work progresses… discipline your vision.
What separates the good from great is usually not specific technical skills but rather visual perceptive skills. While the haircut remains the foundation for any look, technical styling procedures and the actual finish are the true ‘means’ to creating todays organic finishes.
Product application is key as most often, it is misapplication of a product as to why a client may dislike a product. Simple thought is to always focus on the product where you want the hair to be most responsive to the beautiful cut you just executed.