💇‍♀️ How to cut your wife's hair (and stay married)

December 13, 2022

Step 1: Have a wife who may not have any chill but who thinks that not going to the salon is punk rock.

December 14, 2022

Today was my first haircut attempt. I looked up a quick youtube video on how to cut women's hair and this is what popped up:


It's amazing how much and little I know about hair at the same time. Like, it's quite patronizing that this guy had to explain split ends to me (currently, my hair is about twice as long as my wife's — so I wouldn't call this concept new to me or something that only women experience). At the same time, I find myself completely dumbfounded about the process of combing before cutting, let alone the idea of feathering. Like, I've had many haircuts — including cuts with long hair that were feathered — but being behind the pair of scissors somehow feels brand new.

I do what the video says and trim Camille's french bob. I took off too small an amount, so we need to follow up later in the week to get the length right. I'm not going anywhere near her bangs until I'm much more practiced — that's a grenade that I'll let her handle herself.

I notice that the strand-to-strand lengths are uneven, though the macro level hair length is about right. I'm stressed to tell Camille this, but she's really cool about it. She likes how her hair is feathered and notices that her hair needs to be shorter. Camille reminds me that she's totally ok with having bad haircuts for a while so that I can get better. This is not convincing to me at all, but I'll stay along for the ride.

I'm pretty sure I used too dull a pair of scissors. I didn't have clean cuts, and some strands were longer than the rest of the pull of hair. And, what is the comb in my hand for anyway? It seems useless, and I don't use it to get a consistent length (it was useful for straightening her hair initially as well as making a center part).

Camille was satisfied for the most part, given this was my very first go. Besides the length being too long (kind of the goal, so I could get more practice): I didn't cut the small hairs underneath the long ones, especially at the back of her neck. This is not what she was going for, which was more of a French bob. What I had left her with was somewhat of a stacked bob, a haircut she noted is associated with Karens.

Not what we're going for

I noted the gravity of my mistake, and set the intention to fix this the next trim over the weekend.

December 18, 2022

I had supervision from Camille's mom, Crystal. Her experience is in men's cuts – primarily Jay's, Camille's dad. Any experience is better than my one haircut and youtube video viewing. Plus, I generally value her attention to detail over my own.

This time, Camille took a shower before the haircut. I notice that her hair was way longer than it was last time, even with the cut. Camille notes that hair will typically lay flatter when wet and that she's always had wet hair when she's gotten professional cuts. I'll definitely require this precondition for all haircuts going forward.

After splitting a part and combing Cam's hair, I measured a length to be cut and presented it for review to Crystal. It looked good, and I made a first cut. I was then about to feather Cam's hair when Crystal noted that it is easier to cut all the hair the same length, and feather last. This would lead to a more even cut, she posited — this is what she did for Jay's hair anyway.

I tried this new approach, and boy was it better. I ended up grabbing a bit of the cut strand and a bit of the uncut strand, to make sure the length was even. This gave me more confidence that I had an even cut throughout. Whereas last time, I did the left side of the front, then the right front, before wrapping around to the back, this time I went all the way around Cam's head. Lo and behold, the hair in the front on the left and right of Cam's part was even! That was a huge relief!

I will admit, this time around, I feel like the back of her head is shorter than her sides and front. Though, it's hard to tell if my mistake was from this time, from the last, or if there is no problem at all and this is how the cut is supposed to be. Next cut, I'll definitely take the time to look out for the shape of the overall cut as I make progress towards one side.

I did make a concerted effort to cut the under-hairs at the back of her neck to be shorter than the overall length. I cut these smaller hairs by look as opposed to comparing lengths to the front hairs. Camille tells me that professionals will shave these hairs down, if not cut them as short as possible with scissors. This bob will be French if I can help it!

Later on in the evening, after her hair was dry and we celebrated a successful cut, Cam found a patch of smaller hairs near the back of her neck that were longer than her bob. I had given my wife a rat tail. 🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️

I gave Cam a rat tail

We'll fix it tomorrow...

February 2023

I didn't take immediately after this cut. Here's what I remember about it:

Her haircut was so short that we waited three months until her next haircut.

Her bob was cut too short

Her hair falls above her chin, not just below it!

May 20, 2023

Ok. I'm graduating to using the straight razor. It's time to get serious. Luckily, Cam found a professional video on the subject for me to rent.

This was quite a good tutorial on giving French bobs. I like the hair dressers music choices. Some of the ideas from the video that stuck with me were:

My initial cut following this video, I just focused on getting the length and end texture right. I didn't attempt to cut to get the weight or density right, since I have a feathered razor (she said that it's really easy to take off too much weight with those).

So, I made a first pass, where I cut off the minimum amount possible using proper razor technique. I didn't want to cut too much off like I did in February! I was a bit too cautious, and it ended up too long. I repeated the cut the next day, again cutting off the smallest amount possible. This ended up being the right length! Now, Cam could look good going to her office happy hour. If anything, I appreciated getting to do the cut twice. It was good practice and it helped build confidence with the razor.

June 10, 2023

The length was still good. Now, Cam wants me to try to take away some weight so it looks more like a true bob. Since it was my first serious attempt to cut for weight, I re-watched parts of the Vimeo tutorial, and cut very conservatively. Cam was freaked when she saw how much hair fell to the ground! But, it was clear that after the cut, I didn't really take off that much at all.