How To Sharpen Shears – Step By Step Guide

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Written By cuttingshears

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Learn How To Sharpen Shears At Home, Professionally

When it comes to hairdressing and barbering, every professional desires sharp shears. Anything less can lead to frustration during haircuts. Dull scissors tend to bend, fold, and push off the hair at the ends, causing inconvenience for the stylist and potentially resulting in split ends and an imperfect cut for the client.

The sharpness of scissors is subjective and depends on the user’s preferences. One stylist may find a pair of scissors acceptable for use, while another may consider them blunt. If you tend to be clumsy and frequently drop your scissors, it’s important to sharpen them before using them again. Typically, professional shears can be sharpened up to ten times before needing replacement.

Importance of Sharp Hairdressing Shears

Continuing to use a dull shear, especially one with a damaged edge, poses the risk of further blade damage and makes the cutting process strenuous for your hand as you need to exert more effort. Therefore, it is crucial to know how to sharpen shears. However, loose tension in scissors can lead to bad haircuts as the blades bend rather than cleanly cut through the hair strands. When hair-cutting shears become dull, it is advisable to have them sharpened and serviced by a professional shear sharpener or a specialized sharpening company.

Steps To Follow How To Sharpen Your Hairdressing Shears

Experienced hair stylists understand the importance of a sharp pair of hair scissors for achieving precise and clean cuts. However, not all stylists are familiar with the process of sharpening them. Here are several methods you can use for how to sharpen shears:

1. Invest in professional sharpening tools.

You can purchase professional sharpening tools from hardware stores or online. These tools grind the scissor blades repeatedly to sharpen them. They are user-friendly, and there are plenty of instructional videos available online. Professional sharpening tools also provide safety by securely holding the scissors, reducing the risk of accidents.

2. Utilize common household items.

You can sharpen dull hair scissors using common household items. Open and close the scissors against the edge of a glass mason jar in a controlled motion to restore their sharpness. Another option is to fold aluminum foil into a compact rectangle and cut through it. If you can perform ten complete cutting motions through the foil, the blades have been sharpened. Remember to clean and sanitize the scissors after sharpening.

Related: 5 Coolest Scissor Sheaths To Buy In 2023 – Protect Your Shears

3. Employ a whetstone for sharpening.

how to sharpen hair shearsTo sharpen hair scissors using a whetstone, soak the stone in water or oil. Separate the scissor blades and slide one blade at an angle across the stone, repeating the process for ten to fifteen minutes until the blades are sharpened. After sharpening, clean, dry, oil, and reassemble the blades for optimal performance.

4. Use rubbing alcohol for maintenance.

how to sharpen shears hairYou can use rubbing alcohol to sharpen and clean hair scissors. Pour rubbing alcohol into a bowl, dip the scissors, and gently clean the blades using a soft cloth or rag. Repeat this process ten times on each side of the blade. After sharpening with alcohol, ensure the blades are thoroughly dried.

5. Explore glass or aluminum foil techniques.

To sharpen hair scissors at home, try using a mason jar edge or folded aluminum foil. Open and close the scissors against the jar or cut through the foil in ten full motions. These household items can effectively sharpen your hair scissors.

Remember, regardless of the method you choose, maintaining sharp hair-cutting shears is essential for achieving optimal results in your haircuts.

Tips for mastering the art of how to  sharpen shears

Following are some of the tips and tricks to keep in mind while sharpening your hairstyling shears: 

  •  All hairdressing scissors require sharpening due to wear from cutting hair.
  •  Higher-quality hairdressing scissors made of harder steel wear down less quickly and require less frequent sharpening.
  • Cheaper scissors made of softer steel will need more frequent sharpening.
  • Sharpening hairdressing scissors back to their original or even sharper sharpness is possible.
  • To ensure proper sharpening without damaging the scissors, it is recommended to use professional hairdressing scissor sharpeners. They have the expertise and specialized tools required for effective sharpening.