When preparing for a haircut there are some vital steps to take to ensure you are giving the best possible service to your clients: dry hair-cutting, wet hair-cutting, and guidelines.
You must check the hair while it is dry to see how the client is currently wearing their hairstyle to identify their natural hair growth patterns. You should also check the density and texture of the hair as this will dictate any style limitations. Always make sure to carry out a porosity test on dry hair prior to the service.
To test the elasticity, always carry out the test on wet hair. Once the hair has been shampooed and prepared for the service, check through the hair to identify the natural parting. On wet hair you will be able to see the hair type in its natural state, such as curly or straight, and recheck the movement of the hair. The elasticity in the hair allows wet hair to be stretched up to 50% of its original length, and you must consider this when you are cutting the hair wet, as the dried results could be much shorter than you or your client anticipated.
The guideline is probably the most important part of a haircut, both for male and female customers. The guideline determines the finished length of the cut and the overall shape and balance.
Guidelines are the first cuts of the hairstyle. The first cut should be to establish the baseline length, which you agree with your customer. This becomes the guideline for the length of the haircut.
Once the baseline length has been agreed and cut, you are ready to begin the internal layer guideline. This internal guideline will help you achieve the shape of the style. Agree the desired length of the layers with your customer and then cut in your internal guideline to suit the angle at which the hair will be cut.
If you are cutting and lose your guideline, stop and re-establish it. Without a guideline you cannot work methodically through the haircut or maintain any degree of accuracy. Even the most experienced stylists will follow a guideline.