DIY Hair Cut for Boys with Clippers: No Scissor Method

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Learn how to get the best haircuts for babies using hair clippers and no scissors in this tutorial from a dad who has been cutting his hair for years and now his kids’ hair.

DIY boy cutting hair

My dad gave me my first haircut and as I got older I started cutting my own hair.

I’ve only paid for 4-5 haircuts all my life. I wouldn’t say I indulge in great haircuts, but I would say it is a great way to save a lot of money. Also, I believe that I’ve gotten better with practice. By practicing on myself for a long time, I am better prepared to cut my toddlers’ hair. I have three boys now so I see a lot more kids hairstyles in my future! It definitely makes it easier than dragging all of the kids to a hair salon, even if it’s a kid-specific salon. A hairdresser is amazing, but these little gentlemen struggle a lot at times.

A young boy standing in front of a small child and smiling at the camera

The best hairstyles for little boys don’t have to be very complicated. Most guys don’t go to beauty pageants, and I think most guys don’t care if they look cool. That will likely change when they become teenagers! Maybe I’ll be great at Faux Hawk by then, or they might want to stick with the classic styles.

Most of the time I think boys look better when their hair is not on their ears and neck than when they are longer. For our guys, the longer hair tends to have more potential for messy hair.

A little boy standing in the grass

My tutorial is for easy to cut and low maintenance haircuts that are better than a crew cut! If you are looking for trendy haircuts, you can check out YouTube videos or just go to a hairdresser who is in a kid-specific hair salon.

This post provides clear instructions on how to use a hair clipper to cut young children’s hair. I have also included my video tutorial. If you are a visual learner this will help you get the best results.

I like to start using hair clippers as soon as I can familiarize my little man with them. That meant only 1-2 haircuts with scissors for each of my son’s hair (click here for tips on how to cut a baby’s hair)

How to Cut Boy Hair for Each Hair Type


Scissors against scissors

I prefer to use a set of scissors ASAP because I think it’s a lot easier to use a set of scissors than to use a pair of scissors. I think it’s a bit safer for younger kids who have a tendency to twist and move suddenly and best of all, you won’t have a hard time cutting your own hair, which is hard to do on your own with scissors is.

Hair and cutting

Clipper will help you get more consistent results. Clipper sets have guards that you put on the clippers to help you cut hair to a specific length, whether they have shorter hair, medium length hair, or your kids are currently wearing long hairstyles.

My clipper set even has some special guards for the left ear, right ear and eyebrows. The highest my set achieves is a # 8 guard who cuts hair an inch long. I use it in the top center of my head. This is the closest set to what I bought.

Then I work my way down with a 6, 4, 3 and a 2. You can specifically buy larger numbered guards, but I haven’t tried that yet. If your child has an afro hairstyle or a natural curl, then some bigger numbered guards should be checked out.

Hair and cutting

Tips for Success

Here are a few things I think you should keep in mind as you prepare to use a clipper to cut a boy’s hair at home.

First, clippers can be noisy and seem scary to young children. Use plenty of encouragement and explain what you are going to do and, to some extent, why you are going to cut your toddler’s hair.

The older guys are getting used to the clipper and that shouldn’t be a problem.

A person standing in front of a mirror and posing for the camera

Make sure you comb your children’s hair beforehand to prevent the guards from getting caught in knots and pulling their hair. I’ve bailed young children before the end of a haircut and have refused to let anything on their heads for weeks. Better to avoid the upset feelings than try to recover from them!

Hair and cutting

One of the best ways to distract kids and keep them still is if you have a phone or tablet with a favorite show or video, use it to distract the boy during the haircut and get the best haircut possible. This is especially great for toddlers as a toddler haircut can definitely turn into a unique hairstyle when trying to cut their hair on the go.

Use MISTAKE like a magician! Haha!

I think my boys are more willing to get their hair cut if they know they can see something than if I don’t let them.

Another tool that can be used on a hesitant or frightened child is bribery. I’m really just talking about something small, like a cookie, an episode of a favorite series, extra time in the park, or something simple. We tried suction cups, but they tend to get a lot of hair during the process – gross.

Most of the cool haircuts with clippers occur in the bathroom. You can easily put them in one room, have a great power outlet for plugging in your clippers, and storage space for your supplies.

If you have a bath mat, just toss it aside until you’re done. If your outlet is not in a convenient location, you can use an extension cord. I cut hair on carpet. Then I simply vacuum the area thoroughly. Also, I used a vacuum cleaner to clean up a bathroom floor after a haircut.

A man brushes his teeth in front of a mirror and poses for the camera

You may also want a small chair that the child can sit comfortably in. You should be able to easily access the back of your head so I suggest using a small stool to sit on.

Plus, it’s nice to use a smooth apron. For my boy’s last haircut, I just used a trash bag because the apron that came with my set had a few holes in it.

If your son cuts your child’s hair, he will get too much facial hair. You can ask him to close his eyes while you blow him off. Just be careful not to spit on her, haha!

One good thing about haircutting at home is that you can just toss it in the bathtub after your haircut. It means less hair in the car and easy cleaning for your child.

My haircutting method for my sons

My haircut method is simple.

I use an 8 all over my head. I do it like this, if later I miss a part that I want to cut shorter, it is at least only as long as a # 8.

Then I use a # 6 everywhere except the top center of the head. Then I use a # 4 from about the top of the temples down, including the top of the back of the head.

Then I’ll start a little lower than I started with number 4 and will use a number 3. For the lower part of my hairline, sideburns, and around my ears, I’ll be using # 2 protection.

For the final cut around the ears, neckline, and sideburns, I’ll just do it freehand with no protection.

Usually it takes me 20-30 minutes. I try to avoid obvious transition lines from one length to another. It might be cool to have a high fade, but I want that to look on purpose rather than like dad being messed up.

You want everything to blend into one another. You can usually do this by cutting at different angles in a V shape.

You want to pull up and out at the end of a cut.

I think it helps to take the time to try to remove most of the clipped hair and move the uncut hair around with your fingers to see if you’ve missed a spot or are of different lengths.

A man is sitting in a sink

It is helpful to remember that long hair can always be cut shorter later. So be a little more careful when cutting the short sections.

Another important thing to keep in mind when cutting children’s hair is that if you screw something up, you can likely cut most of the hair around them shorter as well.

Curly hair adjustments

If your child’s hair is curly it should be your decision whether to have a short haircut, but sometimes keep in mind that having curly hair short sides can get crazy.

To see how they naturally style curly hair, use a comb and take a comb and gently pull the curl out while using your clipper to trim the curl.

If they have thick or wavy hair make sure and start with a little bit and add more when you feel they need it. Many baby boys with curly hair have a side parting, so be sure to work with the natural part of their hair and not tackle it.

You can use different clipper settings for extra texture and definitely use gel to help with those lovely curls.

I’d love to hear if you cut your kids’ hair down below. If you’ve done some cool hairstyles like spiky hair, long side bangs, or shaved lines, show us off below.

Save money and give your sons a cute style for every hair type with a clipper.

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