Stay Sharp - Scissor Over Comb Technique

A scissor over comb technique is mainly associated with classic barbering. It is used when it gets too short to be held between the finger.

Scissor over comb techniques are generally performed in the lower portion of a haircut: the nape, behind and around the ears and in the sideburn areas. You can also apply an over comb technique to an entire haircut.

A low scissor over comb technique is used to refine the nape perimeter lines in medium or short haircuts to give a clean result. The comb is held out from the head between 0° and 30°. A low application removes excess length and weight along the perimeter only. It shows the least amount of scalp in the finished result.

A medium scissor over comb technique is applied to the sides, perimeter and back from the occipital bone down to create a tapered and clean area in a short haircut. The comb is held out from the head at 45°. The line of inclination moves closer to the head as it travels to the perimeter and consequently exposes a medium degree of scalp.

Once the scissor over comb is complete the next stage is to refine the outline. You can use the back of a trimmer against the skin. When outlining the side areas and behind the ears use the trimmers vertically. Use the tip of the trimmers, and then place them against the skin. When working with side burn and ear areas, bend the ear forwards for an accurate result.

Many shapes will also have areas of disconnection. In some cases you may choose to place the initial guide along the parietal ridge, then execute the scissor over comb technique. The parietal ridge is key to a strong masculine shape.