From A Pro: How To Cut Your Own Bangs In 6 Easy Steps
While they typically cost less than a full haircut, monthly trips to the hair salon just for a quick bang trim aren't always within budget (especially now, given the current economic climate). As a result, many folks have started to skip the appointments and take matters into their own hands—but trimming your own hair at home can be intimidating.
As someone who's cut their own bangs very poorly again and again, I can relate to the struggle. However, I finally found a technique that works every time, thanks to expert stylist Brad Mondo's recent TikTok tutorial—here's a quick rundown of what to do (and what to avoid) so you can nail your bang trim, too:
Get your tools ready.
Wet your hair.
For a bang trim, you don't necessarily have to wet your entire head. Just take your mist bottle and douse the front section of your hair on both sides. It doesn't even need to be dripping wet; just damp will do.
Section out your hair.
Next, you'll want to part your hair wherever it naturally falls (though a middle part will be best for curtain bangs). Then, going from the front of your head to the back, take 1 to 1½ inches of hair on each side. "If you want it really thick, do more. If you want it thinner, do less," Mondo explains.
How much hair you section out will determine how thick your bangs will be. If you already sport bangs that have grown out, then just section those strands away from your longer layers.
When you comb your sectioned pieces toward the front, you should see a triangle shape, Mondo says (the "point" is your hair part). Grab more or fewer strands to make the triangle section even on both sides.
Get your "X" pull ready.
The key to creating curtain bangs that give the iconic "swoop" is this: Pull one section of your hair (either the left or the right side) to the opposite side—think of it like drawing an "X." Make sure the hair is combed out and flat when you do this.
When your hair isn't flat (read: tons of strands stacked on top of each other), it will be harder to cut evenly through the hair. Think of it like cutting through a flat, rolled-out pizza crust versus a ball of dough.
Go in for the initial cut.
Once you have your hair combed and pulled to the opposite side, you'll want to determine how long you want your bangs to be. For the video demonstration, Mondo cuts right below the lip, but if your hair is shorter in length, naturally your bangs will be shorter as well. Wherever that length is, aim for a bit below that goal, as you can always trim them shorter later on.
Holding the flat section of hair between your two fingers, cut the hair parallel to your part, Mondo says. This means holding your scissors horizontally for the cut rather than vertically chopping at the ends of the hair.
Even them out & finish with face-framing.
Once you've done your initial cut on both sides, you'll want to compare them to ensure they're even. Comb your bangs down directly in front of your face and trim any uneven ends.
After that, it's time to style. If you choose to use hot tools, a good blowout using a round brush is your best bet. This will help you see the cut more clearly so you can trim any loose ends. When you blow-dry your bangs, you can start by twisting the round brush under your bangs and in front of your face. Then, with the brush still underneath, take each section and blow-dry it while pulling the hair to the aligning side. Again, this will help nail the "swoosh" effect of the curtain bangs.
If you're cutting your curtain bangs for the first time, finish it off with some face-framing layers, Mondo says. You'll want to do this step on dry hair, as demonstrated in his video. Trim the next-closest front sections of the hair (right behind the bangs) a bit shorter than your longest layer, going from shortest in the front to longest in the back. Imagine cutting down in a diagonal line.
This doesn't need to be dramatic—just enough to add dimension and prevent a dramatic length change from bangs to your longest layers.
What to avoid:
From my own experience, I've collected a few quick no-no's. Here's what to avoid:
- Never brush your bangs straight down in front of your eyes for the cut—commit to the "X" setup.
- Stick to horizontal cutting and trimming—don't turn the scissors vertically.
- Never make your first cut the shortest length you'd want—start small and touch them up if you want them shorter.
- Don't fret if they don't look perfect—your hair will grow out faster than you think (here are a few A+ growth serums to help you out if needed).
For many, it's simply unrealistic to visit a stylist every few weeks for a quick bang trim. No sweat: As Mondo demonstrated in the TikTok tutorial, the at-home bang trim might even be easier than you think. Now, if you're going for a full trim and want more tips, check out this step-by-step guide (including tips for wavy and curly hair types).
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty & Health Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including skin care, women’s health, mental health, sustainability, social media trends, and more. She previously interned for Almost 30, a top-rated health and wellness podcast. In her current role, Hannah reports on the latest beauty trends and innovations, women’s health research, brain health news, and plenty more.