Like most women, I find that the thing that drives me to get a haircut is an unruly bangs situation. So, last week, I decided to join the ranks of the few and proud who trim their own bangs at home. The only problems were that I’d never done it before and my weird curly-wavy hair can be a challenge. Enter the YouTube tutorial.
YouTube has finally been around long enough to have matured past the “Man Gets Hit In Groin With Football” stage. Well OK, the football-to-groin videos still proliferate of course, but now they’re balanced out with actual good, funny, or helpful content. Beauty tutorials are perfectly suited for the current age of YouTube: one part narcissism to two parts usefulness.
I had only dabbled in the YouTube tutorial world once before, to get a refresher on how to use a curling iron. But the stakes were higher this time; this wasn’t a styling technique that would disappear once I showered. I was going to be taking scissors to my bangs, and the margin of error was very small.
That’s why I settled on a tutor who seemed like she really knew what she was doing. Not only did her video, with its impressive number of hits, come up first in my search, but a few more clicks revealed that she’s building herself a bit of an online beauty tutorial empire. Best of all, she had naturally curly hair. I decided she was the one I would trust my precious bangs with.
I watched her video twice before venturing into my bathroom to start chopping. Once I got over my initial aversion to her demeanor, I actually found her really likeable and her lesson easy to follow. She had even recorded a voiceover to fill in more tips and information or explain exactly what she was doing. None of her tips were groundbreaking: section off your hair, get it damp, cut at an angle and then deploy whatever you call those little vertical snips that soften the bang line. But she laid them out in a clear, intuitive way that was easy to follow. I did dart back to my computer a few times to re-watch key moments, but that’s only because I’m a nervous little weirdo.
The reason many people don’t trim their own bangs, I believe, is that the stakes are so high and the whole process seems so complicated when you’re actually at the salon. Not to mention that the stylist is often blocking your view of the mirror when they’re working with the front of your hair. This tutorial, and others of its ilk, takes the mystery out of the whole process and empowers you to try it yourself. Once I understood the overall methods to cutting bangs, I really felt confident that I could do it.
So you’re probably wondering how it all turned out. I have to say I did a pretty good job. I erred on the side of caution with the length, as advised by my tutor, so the bangs were still a little longer than I wanted them to be. So, in a few days I might give it another go with some bolder snips. But the shape is great, they style really well, and I’ve lost the split ends that had been driving me crazy. (I would post before and after photos, but I’d like to cling to my relative anonymity while I still can.)
Basically, I feel more confident that I could do this again (in fact, I plan to) and I can only imagine my technique will improve with repetition. It’s nice to know that I don’t have to be mystified by how my own hair works, and that I can go a little longer between haircuts. If you’ve been considering a YouTube beauty tutorial, it might be worth a try. Just do your research, take your time and enjoy the non-existent price tag.