How to Cut a Buzzcut : Hair Clippers & Men's Hair
How to Buzz Cut Hair
A buzz cut is an easy style to cut and will leave you with hair that's very low-maintenance. To give yourself or someone else a buzz cut, you'll first need to invest in some high-quality clippers. By choosing the desired guard size and buzzing the hair slowly and evenly, you'll end up with a professional-looking buzz cut.
Buzzing the Hair
Use high-quality clippers with secured guards.If you don't already have a pair of high-quality clippers, you can purchase a pair costing between and 0 online. Before you start buzzing, make sure the guard is securely fastened to the clippers. Otherwise, you could end up with a bald spot if it falls off while in use.
- Many clippers will come as a kit, including not only the clippers but the charging station, guards, combs, and barber scissors.
- Keep your clipper well-oiled so it lasts longer. If your clipper didn't come with oil, you can buy some online or at your local department store.
Cover the cutting area with plastic or a towel.To catch all of the hair that’s buzzed off, place plastic over the area. You can also cover your shoulders with plastic or a towel to protect your clothes and make cleanup easier.
- Cut the hair in a place that’s easy to sweep up, such as an open room with hard floors, a bathroom, or even outside.
Start with clean, dry hair.If the hair is wet, greasy, or matted down, it’s going to be more difficult to cut. To ensure you get a clean, even cut, wash the hair before cutting it. Dry the hair thoroughly so that it’s ready to be buzzed.
Buzz the top of the head evenly.After properly securing the chosen guard length, start buzzing the top of the head. You want to hold the guard flat against the head, buzzing from the front of the head to the back in even rows.
- If you're cutting your hair yourself, you'll want to make sure you have a good grip with your thumb on the bottom of the clippers. Stand in front of a mirror so that you can see what you're doing.
- Most clipper kits come with 8 guard lengths. A #1 guard will cut the hair the shortest, and a #8 guard will leave most of the hair in place. If you want a really short buzz cut, use the clippers without a guard.
- When you get to the crown, you may need to move the clippers in different directions, as hair grows circularly at that spot.
Cut off the hair on the sides of the head using a shorter guard length.Most people buzz the sides and back of the head using a smaller guard setting than they used on the top of the head. Start where the sideburns are and buzz the sides of the head in an upwards motion. Work carefully around the ears.
- For example, if you used a #1 guard on the top, you could use no guard on the sides.
- If you're buzzing your own hair, work slowly around the edges to maintain an even cut. Follow the same pattern of going in an upwards motion.
- Hair tends to look puffier on the sides when it grows back, which is why the sides and back are kept shorter.
Use the same guard size to buzz the back of the head.Using the same guard setting that was used on the sides, cut the hair starting from the bottom where the neck is going up to the buzzed top, buzzing the back of the head in strips.
- Make sure the guard is flat against the neck/head the whole time so that the cut is even.
- Since you can’t see the back of your head, you’re going to need access to 2 mirrors to be able to buzz the back of your hair yourself. Stand in front of a mirror while holding a handheld mirror to be able to see all angles of your head.
Taper the edges of the cut using the shortest attachment.Using a #1, taper in the edges of the haircut by attaching the proper guard and starting at the sideburns. You should also taper the back of the head, starting at the bottom and working your way up to ear-level, or where the head starts to round out.
- You’ll want to clip all the way around each ear. Pull the ear inwards to keep it out of the way while trimming.
- If cutting your own hair, you'll want to use 1 hand to move your ear away from the clippers while the other hand does the tapering. Make sure you're using a mirror.
Detail the cut to make it look polished.Take a trimmer and cut the sideburns and neckline so that it’s nice and even. This will create a straight line that will give the haircut a professional look.
- If you’re not confident that you can detail the back of your head, ask someone to help you.
Inspect the cut to make sure it’s even.Once you think you’ve finished, use a mirror to inspect the haircut closely. Make sure everything is even and you didn’t miss any spots. If you did miss a spot or need to do a touch up, choose the correct size guard and fix it to ensure the cut is even.
Choosing the Right Length
Pick a guard depending on the desired hair length.Decide how short you want your buzz cut to be and attach the corresponding guard size onto your clippers. A #1 guard size provides the shortest cut, while a #4 gives a longer buzz cut. Use the chosen guard for an all-over cut.
- If you’re not sure which length is best for you, start with the highest number — you can always cut your hair shorter.
Use the clippers without a guard for the shortest buzz cut possible.The clippers will take off most of your hair if you don't put a guard on them.
- Be aware that this cut often shows the scalp since it's so short.
Select a #1 or #2 for a short buzz cut that still shows hair.Putting a #1 or #2 guard length on your clippers will leave you with some hair on top while still being pretty short.
Use a #3 or #4 for a less-intense cut.If you want a buzz cut while still keeping a head of hair, choose a guard that's a #3 or #4. This will give you about 0.25 inches (0.64 cm) of hair length. You can choose to use a shorter guard length on the sides and back of the hair, or you can simply use the #3 or #4 all over.
Opt for a crew cut for a gradual fade.With a crew cut, the hair on the top of the head is longer than the sides. Choose a #3 or higher for the top. When buzzing the sides, go down 1 guard size from the length used on the top of the head. Taper in the bottom of the cut by going down an additional guard size.
Go bold with a high and tight cut.This cut gives you length on the top of your head and buzzed sides and back of the head. Choose a #4 guard size or higher for the top of the head. For the sides and the back of the head, use a #1. This will give you a drastic cut instead of a natural fade.
Try an undercut for a shaped top.Use a #1 or #2 guard length to buzz the sides, back, and part of the top of your head, starting near where the middle of each eyebrow is. You'll be left with longer hair in the top-middle of your head, which you can style however you'd like.
- If you were to draw an imaginary line from the middle of each of your eyebrows to the back of your head, this is the line you should use to buzz your hair.
- Instead of leaving the entire top of your head with longer hair, you'll shape it in so that most of your head is shaved.
Things You'll Need
Plastic or towel
To buzz cut hair, use high-quality clippers with a low number guard if you want the hair really short or a high number guard if you want it a little longer. Once the guard is secured on the clippers, start by buzzing the top of the head evenly, going from the front of the head to the back in rows. Then, replace the guard with a shorter one and buzz the hair on the sides and back of the head. Finally, put on the shortest guard and go over the edges of the hair to taper it.
- If you mess up, don't panic. Go to your local barber or salon to have your buzz cut fixed.
- Keep your buzz cut maintained. Most people with this cut trim their hair again every 2 weeks or so.
- Take your time when buzzing your hair. Rushing through it could lead to an uneven cut.
- Have a friend or family member help you if possible, especially when buzzing the back of your head.
Video: How to buzz your own hair
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