Mastering the Pixie Cut: Step by Step Survival Guide

The pixie cut has long been an iconic and versatile hairstyle that never goes out of fashion. As hairstylists, mastering the art of the pixie cut is a valuable skill in your repertoire. This short and chic style offers a world of possibilities for your clients, but it also demands precision and expertise. In this article, we'll explore the techniques and tips that can help you become a pixie cut maestro.

Image: short-hair-style

Understanding Face Shapes: One of the first steps to mastering the pixie cut is understanding the client's face shape. A pixie cut can be tailored to accentuate and complement different face shapes. For example, a longer pixie with side-swept bangs can flatter a round face, while a textured, layered pixie can work wonders for oval faces. Customize your approach to create a look that enhances your client's unique features.

Precision Cutting: The key to a flawless pixie cut lies in precision cutting. Invest in high-quality shears and keep them well-maintained. Pay meticulous attention to detail during the cutting process. Start with a solid foundation, often achieved through a precise nape and well-defined sides, before adding texture and layering. Remember, it's not just about taking off length; it's about sculpting a shape that suits your client's preferences and facial structure.


Step 1: Consultation Begin by having a thorough consultation with your client. Understand their hair type, face shape, lifestyle, and styling preferences. This information will guide you in customizing the pixie cut to suit their individual needs.

Step 2: Prepare the Tools Gather all the necessary tools, including:

  • High-quality shears

  • Clippers with different guard lengths

  • Comb

  • Sectioning clips

  • Water spray bottle

  • Mirror

  • Styling products (optional)

Step 3: Sectioning Divide the hair into sections to ensure even cutting and blending. Create sections for the crown, sides, back, and bangs. Secure each section with clips.

Step 4: Start with the Nape Begin at the nape of the neck. Depending on the desired length, choose the appropriate clipper guard or shears. Start with a longer length and adjust as needed. Create a clean, horizontal baseline by moving the clippers or shears in an upward motion.

Step 5: Define the Sides Move on to the sides of the head. Use your comb as a guide to ensure a consistent length. Angle the clippers or shears slightly downward as you approach the sides to create a gentle taper.

Step 6: Work on the Crown For the crown area, determine the desired length and texture. Depending on the style, you can leave the crown longer for added volume or create layers for a textured look. Work section by section, cutting and texturizing as needed.

Step 7: Blending Blending is crucial for a seamless pixie cut. Use various techniques like scissor-over-comb, clipper-over-comb, or feathering to create a smooth transition between different lengths. Pay close attention to blending the sides into the top and the nape into the back.

Step 8: The Bangs Discuss the bangs with your client. Pixie cuts can have various fringe styles, from short and blunt to side-swept. Cut the bangs to the desired length and angle, ensuring they frame the face beautifully.

Step 9: Texturizing Texture is key to a pixie cut's charm. Use texturizing shears or point-cutting to add movement and dimension to the hair. Create texture throughout the top and crown, but avoid over-texturizing, which can lead to frizziness.

Step 10: Final Check After cutting and texturizing, release the sections and assess the overall shape. Make any final adjustments to ensure the cut is even and balanced.

Step 11: Styling Style the pixie cut according to your client's preferences. Apply styling products like pomade, wax, or styling cream for hold and texture. Use a comb or your fingers to shape the hair as desired. You can also blow-dry for added volume.

Step 12: Educate and Maintain Before your client leaves, educate them on how to maintain and style their new pixie cut at home. Provide tips on product usage, styling techniques, and the ideal timeframe for touch-up visits to keep the cut looking sharp.

Remember, mastering the pixie cut takes practice and an understanding of your client's unique features and preferences. Each pixie cut is a work of art, and with time and experience, you'll become a pixie cut expert.


Texture is Everything: Texture plays a pivotal role in the pixie cut's appeal. Achieve texture through point cutting, razoring, or texturizing shears to create movement and dimension. Tailor the amount of texture to your client's desired style, whether it's a soft, tousled look or a more defined and edgy finish. Texture also allows for easy styling versatility.

Mastering the Art of Blending: The pixie cut often involves blending different lengths seamlessly. This is especially crucial around the crown and sides. Employ various cutting techniques like scissor-over-comb, clipper-over-comb, or feathering to achieve a harmonious transition between lengths. Achieving a polished look requires smooth blending that appears effortless.

Styling Options: Educate your clients on the styling options available with a pixie cut. Show them how to use products like styling creams, pomades, and hairsprays to achieve different looks. Pixie cuts can be versatile, ranging from sleek and polished to tousled and carefree. Provide hands-on guidance during styling sessions to ensure your clients can recreate their desired look at home.

Maintenance Advice: Pixie cuts often require more frequent maintenance than longer styles. Be proactive in advising your clients on the ideal time frame for touch-ups to keep their pixie cut looking sharp. Share tips on how to maintain the cut's shape and style between salon visits, such as using the right products and techniques for daily upkeep.

Confidence and Communication: Finally, mastering the pixie cut requires confidence in your skills and clear communication with your clients. Understand their preferences, listen to their concerns, and offer professional advice. Build trust by being transparent about what can be achieved and what may not work for their hair type or face shape.

A Pixie cut it's about precision cutting, creating texture, and customizing the style to suit your client's unique features and preferences.