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Yesterday I told the tale of how (and why) I started cutting my husband’s hair at home. After much money saved, I admit that this practice is not necessarily for everyone. For example, I don’t cut my own hair. And perhaps someone in your family has a very complex style that they will only let a professional handle. But just because you don’t cut hair at home doesn’t mean you can’t also share in the money savings. Today I want to offer four more easy tips to help you cut cost when it comes to cutting your hair.

1. Have a friend do it

Maybe your household hasn’t produced any brave barbers to date, but that doesn’t mean you can’t seek out a friend who does have the skills. And if you insist on some kind of payment as thanks, you could offer to do them a favor of equal value, such as cooking them a meal or walking their dog.

2. Find a cheaper hair cutting service

Perhaps you go to your favorite barber out of loyalty, but sometimes a fancy hair boutique might be charging two or three times as much as a discount hair salon like Cost Cutters or Fantastic Sams. While a different person might be cutting your hair every time you go in, the money you save will more than make up for it.

3. Look for coupons before you go

Every time I get my hair cut, I have my husband find me a coupon on the internet. For example, he signed up a long time ago on Cost Cutters’ own website and they send out coupons by email regularly.  A quick google search for other hair salon chain coupons also yields several results.

4. Get your hair cut less frequently

For certain styles this doesn’t really work, but if your hair style will allow it, then sometimes a way to save money is to wait longer between cuts. You don’t want to wait too long (this can lead to unhealthy split ends and breakage), but you might not need to go as often as you currently go. I tend to get my hair cut about every four to six months. My hair grows a lot during this time, but then it’s kind of fun to get it all cut off again!

Reader Reflection

Have you found any creative ways to save money on haircuts? Please share!

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Several months ago my husband came to me with a proposition. Let me provide you with some necessary background information before I go into the details. First of all, my husband is the ultimate deal-finder. He loves to save money and discover great prices. Secondly, my husband works from home and really finds it inconvenient to have to drive all the way into town just to get a haircut (we live out in the boonies). You can see where this is going…his proposition was to have me cut his hair at home and he had found a great deal on a home-hair-cutting kit.

My first reaction went something like this, “Um, are you crazy? I can’t cut your hair!” But then he laid on the encouragement, thick. He told me he thought I would do a fine job…it couldn’t be that hard, right? Next he offered me another selling point—he did the math on how much money we would save. The home kit he found (Wahl Haircut Kit) happened to be on super clearance that day with a rebate, so it carried the low price of just $9. My husband’s regular haircuts cost $15 each and he had been going about four times a year (that’s $60 a year if you’re counting). He also pointed out the money we could save in gas and the time he would gain since he wouldn’t have to drive into town for a cut anymore. I couldn’t deny the obvious benefits.

He bought the kit. I wasn’t completely on board, but I told him I’d give it a try since his arguments were so good. The kit arrived and sat on the shelf until my husband’s hair was getting so long I had to cut it. Yes, I was putting it off, mostly because I still wasn’t too confident in my abilities. So, we picked a time one afternoon and I cut his hair. And you know what happened? I actually did an decent job. I was hired.

home-hair-cut

You can cut hair at home too

Now that we’ve done it a few times, I can safely say that although I’m not going to open my own barber shop, I’m glad to cut my husband’s hair! Once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty easy and as I stated above, the money savings are too good to pass up. Now since I initially had such a hard time being convinced to even consider such an idea, I thought it would be useful to outline some tips here to encourage you also to give it a try. This won’t be a tutorial on how to cut hair, but rather just some advice I learned along the way that will help you get started and ultimately get you on your way to some real money savings.

  • Set aside some time to learn about the art of cutting hair. I’m not saying you should take a class or read a book. All I did was watch a couple of videos on YouTube. That seemed to be enough information to at least get started.  Furthermore, hair-cutting kits certainly do come with useful instruction manuals.
  • It helps if your customer is patient and forgiving. I couldn’t have asked for a better first customer. My husband had the utmost faith in my abilities and was extremely patient. He encouraged me every step of the way and didn’t even seem too concerned that I could make a mistake that would cause him to not want to go out in public (I didn’t). So, you can’t force your customer to act this way, but you can tell him or her that it would help you do a much better job.
  • Don’t expect your initial cutting job to take ten minutes. I admit that the first time I cut my husband’s hair, it took about an hour—far longer than a cut would have taken at the barber shop. But it’s important to take your time while you are still getting the hang of it. You don’t want to make any rash mistakes because you’re trying to be as good as any professional your first attempt.
  • Cut conservatively the first time. What I mean by this is that you should start by cutting off small amounts first, until you get the hang of it. If you go in full right away, you won’t be leaving yourself much (if any) room for errors. It will take longer this way, but it’s also a safer approach.
  • Be careful!. Hair-cutting scissors and razors are naturally pretty sharp (so they get the job done). That’s why it’s important that you be very careful when handling these potentially dangerous tools for the first time. I cut myself early on because I was trying to go too fast.
  • Take the job outside. We made a rookie mistake our first time around and cut my husband’s hair in the dining room. Hair was EVERYWHERE. We now cut outside and let the wind blow it away. Trust me, this is so much easier!
  • Have fun! This is a great time to get to have some one-on-one time with your customer, whether it’s your spouse or your child. Talk, laugh, and enjoy it, just like at the barber shop.
  • Don’t worry, the next time will be easier. If you can find as good of a deal on a hair-cutting kit as we did, your kit will have already paid for itself after just one cut! And take heart, you will only get better as you practice more.

Home hair-cutting isn’t necessarily for everyone

While I now cut my husband’s hair at home regularly, I still don’t cut my own hair (nor do I ask my husband to do it). If my hair were just simple and all one length, then perhaps I would give it a shot, but I have complicated layers like many women so I still like to go get my haircut professionally. However, choosing to abstain from cutting hair at home doesn’t mean there aren’t other creative ways to save money. Tomorrow we’ll look at four ways you can save a few bucks on haircuts if you can’t (or won’t) cut at home.

Reader Reflection

Do you give haircuts at home? I’d love to hear any interesting stories!

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