Should you cut hair wet or dry?

February 23, 2022

The age old question that has every hairdresser confused, should you cut hair when it's wet or when it's dry? Some have been taught wet and of course some have been taught dry, but is there a right or wrong answer? Absolutely not! If you're a long time reader of our blogs you'll know that we are fully supportive with what you, the hairdresser or barber finds most comfortable or the way you prefer to perform jobs. If you're a newbie here - first off, Welcome! and secondly, you'll quickly learn that as said above we fully support all you creative artists out there on how you perform your haircutting duties.


Now, of course there are the standard ways that we are all taught on how to cut. BUT we all know that hairdressers and barbers are the biggest rule breakers. Picture this - You're an apprentice with a real creative flare and you've learnt all the 'how to' BASIC ways on how to do all things hair. And then... you qualify to be a senior stylist and let your big guns loose, you've now quickly discovered that cutting hair wet may not be the way for you. While yes, you get the result you want by the end, you still love to cut hair dry to see it in its most natural form. Well all your basic rules have now gone out the window and you're getting the exact results you've wanted in a much more timely, happier and comfortable manner. How good is that right!? Your creative flare is shining - just how it was intended to do!


Cutting hair wet

Ok so, when cutting hair wet, it's generally just been shampooed or has been sprayed down to get the perfect amount of dampness applied to the hair to be able to cut it. As an apprentice/junior it's usually taught this way to help hair stay in place (unless it's ringlets) therefore giving the juniors the easiest start possible. Another reason is when you take section after section it can be easy to lose your guideline that you create with the first section, which is why when the hair is wet it can be seen from the density of the hair showing through.

This being said - Junior or not sometimes when cutting larger sections or creating a restyle cut it's much easier to snip away larger amounts of hair when wet then what it is dry (Don't believe us? Give it a try!)  The only downside of cutting hair wet is you'll need to dry it to ensure your sectioning and cuts haven't changed from the condition of the hair going from wet to dry. But we don't like to look at it as a "down side ''. We much prefer to think of it as perfecting your masterpiece! Yes it may take a little longer but you'll be so happy with the end result, oh and so will your client's hair!


Cutting hair dry

Cutting dry hair is a real personal preference - you either love it or hate. 9 times out of 10 stylists love to finish their work off with 'final touches' when the hair is dry and complete. Or if you're anything like us before any cut is made we like to completely dry and style the hair (preferably straight) and cut our clients hair dry.

Why cut dry you ask?  As long as it's not a completely restyle hair cut then the reasoning behind it is because for the standard trims, it's super easy to see all or any split ends the hair might have. Therefore making it easier to cut the perfect amount of hair away and not leaving your client feeling like they have been a victim of a hairdresser getting scissor happy. The other pro of this is that it allows the client to see exactly how much is coming off so they don't get either a complete shock of too much hair coming off OR not enough hair coming off, you can safely cover yourself with the best consultation possible by reconfirming the amount coming off once all the hair is dried. 


Which should you do?

Look, we will never tell you what you should do, but, we will advise on what our preference is and also encourage you to try it out yourself. If you've got this far then it should be fairly obvious that we love a dry cut for trims and touch ups. However, we also love a wet hair cut for the big restyles that need to be done. So which one should you do? Simple - your consultation with your client should be thorough enough to work out which one you'll need to do. If you're having trouble remembering which is which, we'll make it simple - Dry cutting for trims and wet hair cutting for the restyles. Happy cutting!

  • Bottom icon
    Lifetime Warranty
  • Bottom icon
    Free Shipping
  • Bottom icon
    Easy Returns
  • Bottom icon
    Perfect Fit Guaranteed
  • Bottom icon
    #1 in Customer Service
  • Bottom icon
    Used by Professionals Worldwide