The Best Cutting Tips for Curls

By | October 7th, 2020

Cutting curly hair requires a unique approach separate from standard textures. From proper tool selection to ideal technique practice– curl cutting success comes down to a deep understanding of how to achieve the desired end result. Whether you would like to brush up on the basics or dive into advanced techniques, you can increase sales and your book by expanding your curl cutting knowledge. To gain greater insight, we spoke with Keune Senior Creative Design Ambassador, Gareth Palmer!

Take Your Time

While you may be busy behind the chair, setting adequate time aside for curly texture goes a long way for both the result and the relationship with your client. No two curls (nor clients) are alike, therefore, Gareth suggests you slow down the process and engage with your client in order to let them know exactly what you’re doing and why. This added communication will not only result in their desired cut, it will also set you apart as a “curl specialist”, thus leading to more loyal curly clients!

Practice Makes Perfect

Apart from studying the latest cutting tips, applying the new techniques on mannequins or models is a great way to gain confidence. While this may seem basic, Gareth affirms that practice is where you find out what works and what doesn’t. Curly haircuts will feel like a challenge at first, but with invested practice, the confidence built and the results produced are highly rewarding.

How to Prep

While there are various philosophies on the best way to cut curly hair, Gareth finds cutting the hair in its natural dry state is the best way to begin. By doing so, you are able to see exactly how and where the curls fall and you will avoid taking off too much length or creating an unflattering silhouette.

“Curly hair is very reactive when taking off length and removing weight. By cutting it in its natural dry state, you’re able to see the exact impact while cutting and have the ability to interact with your client for instant feedback,” remarks Palmer.

What to Avoid

Texturizing and removing weight from curly clients is a challenge, yet essential, as it completely changes the finished shape. Gareth avoids using texturizing shears and instead relies on a razor or shears. He notes texturizing shears create too heavy of a line for weight removal. With standard shears, his ability to remove weight over a broader section allows him to pay attention to how the hair is reacting. This simple tool choice will result in a tailored finish and provide a softer grow out clients will adore.

Product Suggestions:

Make no mistake, the right style and care products support the curly cut process from start to finish. Take a look at our top picks to help you master the curl.   

Keune Style Brilliant Gloss Spray – Use as a cutting agent on dry hair. Not only does this lightweight spray help define the texture, but it also allows you to see exact results as you cut.


Keune Care Keratin Smooth 2-Phase Spray – Curly hair craves moisture and this Keune favorite is the perfect pick to nourish and detangle. To use as a  foundational product, spray and comb through 2-phase prior to your cut. Afterward, recommend clients use this at-home to recreate the finished look.


Keune Style Curl Cream – This multi-purpose cream imparts a light hold and high-shine finish prior to either an air-dry or a blow-dry. For a more defined look, cocktail Curl Cream with Style Blow Out Geleé prior to air-drying.

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