5 Common Mistakes Hairdressers Make When Cutting Curly Hair

Sarah Oglesby - September 22, 2017 Hairdressing Education

5 Common Mistakes Hairdressers Make When Cutting Curly Hair

Being skilled at cutting naturally curly hair can help any hairstylist tap into a clientele that will remain loyal for years to come. When a naturally curly haired client finds a hairstylist that truly understands how to get the best from their natural texture, the client will become loyal for life!

Read on to learn how to avoid the 5 most common mistakes hairdressers make when cutting naturally curly hair.

The Shake haircut by Graham Oglesby

The Shake by Graham Oglesby

Mistake #1: Assuming every client with natural curl longs for smooth silky locks

This is the number one mistake many hairdressers make when they meet a new curly haired client for the first time. This assumption can immediately cause client distrust. The majority of curly haired clients want to know how to work with what they were blessed with naturally.

By assuming the client longs from smooth straight hair, a stylist can incorrectly approach the shape as if they were cutting straight textured hair. This can lead to a multitude of problems when the client returns home and styles their hair in the usual manner. Most notably the shape can look unbalanced and have areas of excessive bulk.

Hairdressing blowing natural curls straight

Mistake #1 when cutting naturally curly hair – assuming every client with natural curl longs for smooth silky locks

Mistake #2: Using too much tension

Both excessive finger tension and comb tension can cause havoc on the finished result of natural curls. Every client has a unique curl pattern that will vary across their head. This curl pattern will dictate how much or how little tension can be used in each area.

A stylist can achieve a more balanced result by reducing the amount of tension they use when cutting curly hair. Areas of the head that have more curl can easily be blended with straighter areas of the hair by reducing the amount of tension used. By using less tension, curlier areas will not bounce in closer to the head when the tension is released.

As well as reducing finger and comb tension, it is also important to ensure you keep the hair evenly moist throughout the haircut. Too little water will cause the hair to become frizzy and the stylist will not be able to see the curl pattern. Too much water and the weight of the moisture will draw the curl down, again preventing the curly pattern from being visible.

A hairstylist using the wide teeth of their comb to prevent excessive tension when cutting naturally curly hair

Using the wide teeth of your comb prevents excessive tension when cutting naturally curly hair.

Mistake #3: Never visually assessing the shape as the haircut progresses

As discussed in mistake number 2, every client has a unique curl pattern that will vary across their head. This means that the shape may need minute adjustments in each area of the haircut to achieve visual balance.

Visually assessing how the curl pattern is reacting to the chosen technique and applied tension can pay dividends on the final result. Adjusting the technique and tension to suit the curl pattern as you work through the haircut will ensure the outcome the client desires is achieved.

A hairstylist visually assessing a haircut on naturally curly hair

Prevent mistake #3 by visually assessing how the curl reacts to your technique at each stage of the haircut.

Mistake #4: Creating too much structure

Natural curl does not react well when too much structure is applied to the external and internal lines. This is not to say that structure must be avoided. There are many times when a structured shape is exactly what is required. However, pragmatically determining where to place structure and where to loosen structure is essential.

Visual assessment as the shape is placed is the best way to determine if the right balance between structure and softness is achieved. Using a variety of texturizing techniques both internally and on the external line are ideal ways to break up the structure to suit the client’s curl pattern.

A hairstylist using freehand techniques on natural curls

Prevent mistake #4 when cutting natural curls by breaking up the curl with texturing techniques.

Mistake #5: Not educating the client on how to work with their natural texture

Making this mistake can cause undue harm to a client’s self-esteem. In a world of obsession of physical attributes, a client could inadvertently get the message that they should despise their natural curls. Learning how to care for naturally curly hair is the surefire way to teach your client how to love their natural curls.

Educating your client on the ideal hair care, styling products and styling techniques for their hair texture and curl pattern builds your clients confidence no end.  Learning to love their natural curls is the best gift you can give a curly haired beauty.

A hairstylist educating their client on how to maintain their natural curls.

Prevent mistake #5 when cutting naturally curly hair by educating your client on how to maintain and care for their texture.

Improve your haircutting skills for naturally curly hair

At MHDPro.com we have developed the perfect advanced haircutting course for clients that wish to enhance their natural curls and texture for low maintenance, fashionable looks. Visit our Curls and Texture online haircutting course now. On completion, you can download your CPD Certificate of Recognition.


To save 20% on this course at checkout

Offer ends 30th September 2017. Terms apply.