How To Tell If Your Hair Shears Need Sharpening

August 28, 2022

We all know the tell tale signs of a new, sharp pair of shears! They slice through hair like butter and you can't get enough of how smooth and easy they are to use ! Unfortunately that feeling won't last forever.Here are some warning signs that it is time for a shear sharpening!

Are your shears making noise?

You're cutting hair and you hear a clicking noise? What does that mean?

Well when your shears start to make noise it can mean a few things. One- they are becoming dull. This means that you have to work harder to make them cut well.  You're putting more force behind your shears, and now they are louder when you open and close them. 

This may also mean that there has been damage to your scissor blades. If you have dropped your shears or accidentally bumped them you may notice that they make a clicking sound when you are cutting hair. This sound means you may have a nick in the blade. Nicks are tiny cuts, or bumps on the sharp edges of your shears. You can often hear and feel them when cutting. Any nicks are signs you need sharpening... now! Continuing to cut hair with nicks on your sharp edge can lead to even more damage to your shear.


Are you shears pushing, pulling or bending hair?

When your hair cutting shears begin to dull you will find cutting hair is a way harder feat. Sharp shears cut right through a section of hair, while dull scissors will make it even harder to get that super straight line. You may find your client's hair is pulling when you're slide cutting, causing them pain! This is a sure sign something is wrong.

Thinning shears and texturizing shears are not to be left out of this either! Both will need sharpening at some point, most likely only once a year. If your thinning shears feel like they are crunching the hair, or pulling it- they too need sharpening!

If you find that your hair shears are folding hair or bending it, we recommend first checking the tension of your shears. If your shears are too tight or too loose it can mimic the feeling of dull shears. Here's a simple test to check the tension of your hair scissors. Open your scissor blades to a 90 degree angle using the thumb ring. Drop the thumb ring. If it doesn't close to a 45 degree angle, your shears are too tight. If it drops below a 20 degree angle, your shears are too loose. Adjust accordingly, making sure not to over tighten or over loosen them. If you find your shears still push hair, or bend it... time for a sharpening!

Do your hands feel more tired than usual?

This could be a sign that you are working harder to cut hair. When our shears need sharpening it will take more work from us to get them to cut hair. It will take you more physical effort to use your hair shears in a cutting motion. This is a sure sign to call your scissor sharpener!

Are you finding more split ends after you cut hair?

Our clients come to us to help prevent split ends. However, if you are cutting hair with a shear that is dull or damaged, you may be doing more harm than good. Often blunt or dull scissors will pull hair causing damage. You will also notice that your clients may seem uncomfortable when you're cutting their hair, this means that the scissors are grabbing and causing them pain as well as damage. Put down those shears, grab your back up pair and get your blade smith in!

Are you just not getting that perfect smooth finish?

Your favorite, new pair of shears are just not feeling right anymore. That beautiful smooth finish you used to get is still not what it used to be. Sharp scissors create gorgeous sharp, straight lines that you just can not get with a dull scissor. If your shears just do not feel right, we recommend doing some basic maintenance on them first. 

Clean your shears using a soft, microfibre cloth to remove all the hair. Oil your shears. Using shear oil put a small drop on the pivot point where the blades meet. Remove any excess oil. Now check your and adjust your tension. Now go do a hair cut. Simple maintenance can help keep your shears cutting hair longer. However, if they still feel off, and it has been awhile since they were sharpened ( over 3-6 months)... time for a sharpen!

Keeping your shears sharp

While you need a good blade smith to sharpen your scissors properly, it is up to you to continue to maintain your shears. Our beloved scissors are our best friends and by performing daily cleaning, oiling and tension adjusting we can help keep them sharper longer... and avoid any of these hair cutting problems!

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