How to Cut the Back of Your Hair

Cutting the back of your own hair can be a daunting process. Make sure that you have 2 mirrors, 1 on the wall and 1 handheld, as this will help you to assess the hair at the back of your head. When using clippers, create a guideline first and clip upwards towards this. If you have longer hair and are using scissors, flip your hair forward and brush it out first. Whether you are using clippers or scissors, make small, careful cuts to ensure that your trimmed hair looks good.


[Edit]Using Clippers

  1. Stand so that your back is facing a wall-mounted mirror. To cut the back of your hair, you will need to make sure that your face is in the opposite direction to the largest mirror. A bathroom mirror works well for this purpose.[1]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 1 Version 3.jpg
    • If you don’t have a wall-mounted mirror, a mirror propped up on a dresser will also work.
  2. Ask someone to hold a mirror so you can see the back of your head. A handheld or small makeup mirror works best. It will take a little bit of experimenting to find the best angle that you can use to see the back of your head. Ask a friend or relative to help you and have them adjust the mirror until you can see the back of your head.[2]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 2 Version 3.jpg
    • A smaller makeup mirror that is attached to the wall, and can easily be adjusted to different angles would be a great alternative if you don’t have someone to help you.
  3. Position the clippers with the blade side held upwards. The teeth of the blade need to be facing the back of your neck. The blade will be parallel to the floor.[3]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 3 Version 3.jpg
    • Swap the hand that you hold the clippers with throughout the process. For example, when you are trimming the right side of your neck, hold the clippers in your right hand, and swap as you move across your neck.
    • You will also need to swap the mirror between hands as you change the hand that you hold the clippers in. If possible, have a friend or relative hold the mirror for you.
  4. Shave a horizontal guideline straight across the back of your neck. Look for your natural hairline and shave this line along your hairline. This will likely be where the outline from your previous haircut is.[4]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 4 Version 3.jpg
    • Watch in the mirror the whole time as you shave the back of your neck. Keep the line as clean and straight as possible.
    • Stick as closely as possible to your natural hairline, as this will have the best results.
  5. Turn the clippers over. They will need to be facing in the opposite direction to how you held them previously. Make sure that the teeth are now in an upwards direction.[5]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 5 Version 3.jpg
    • This is so that you can cut your hair upwards towards the guideline you just made.
  6. Shave upwards from the bottom of your neck to the guideline. Make small vertical strokes that reach from the bottom of the hair on your neck, and end at the guideline you shaved. Continue shaving vertical sections up to the guideline until there is no hair below the guideline.[6]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 6 Version 3.jpg
    • Make sure that you only shave below the guideline that you created and not above. Tie up or clip back your hair if you don’t want to cut it.
    • This will remove any untidy hair on your neck and give you a clean shave.
    • Trim this area as slowly as steadily as you can to avoid shaving too high.[7]
  7. Trim the corners of your neck if you prefer a more rounded cut. Create a small rounded guideline on the edges of your hair on your neck. Then remove the small patches of hair that are beyond the guideline, as you did in the previous step.[8]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 7 Version 3.jpg
    • While you are in the process of rounding the corners, you can also check if there is any stray hair behind your ears.

[Edit]Using Scissors

  1. Invest in a pair of hair cutting scissors or shears. Hair cutting shears are available from most department stores, and are designed especially for cutting hair. These scissors will cut hair cleanly and neatly, and will help you to avoid getting split ends.[9]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 8 Version 3.jpg
    • Never try to use paper, craft, or kitchen scissors to cut your hair.
  2. Flip your hair forward and comb through it. Make sure that your head is hanging down lower than your neck, so that all of your hair is off your neck and hanging forward towards the ground. Brush or comb it all forward and make sure that there are no tangles.
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 9 Version 3.jpg
    • Your hair can be either wet or dry to do this. If you hair is wet, remember that wet hair will shrink slightly as it dries and bounces up.
    • It’s also easier to see any existing layers if your hair is upside down.
  3. Cut off the ends of the back of your hair while your hair is still flipped. The hair that is from the back will be on the upside of your head. Carefully trim the tips to remove any damaged hair or split ends.[10]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 10 Version 3.jpg
    • Only make small cuts, and check your hair in the mirror regularly to look at the length. You don’t need to flip your hair over to check it in the mirror, as just turning your head to the side slightly will do.
  4. Trim your hair to the desired length with small cuts only. Although it may be tempting to get the job over quickly, make only smaller cuts to avoid making mistakes. Don’t try to trim off more than at once.[11]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 11 Version 3.jpg
    • If you accidentally cut off more hair than desired, you will end up having to cut the rest of your hair to that length. However, if you cut off too little hair, you can always cut more.
  5. Flip your hair back and check how it looks in the mirror. Stand with your back to a wall-mounted mirror, such as a bathroom mirror, and hold a small mirror towards your face. Find the angle that you can check the back of your hair with.[12]
    Cut the Back of Your Hair Step 12 Version 3.jpg
    • If the back of your hair looks a little uneven in the mirror, you can always flip your hair back over and adjust it.


  • If you make a noticeable mistake while cutting the back of your hair, avoid trying to fix it yourself as this is likely to make it worse. Visit a hairdresser, and try again once your hair has grown out again.

[Edit]Things You’ll Need

  • Wall mounted mirror
  • Handheld mirror
  • Makeup mirror
  • Clippers
  • Hair cutting scissors
  • Comb
  • Brush
  • Hair clips


[Edit]Quick Summary

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