A Bang Up Job: How I Cut My Own Bangs

Who knew posting one little picture on instagram with Clara would start a tell-me-more-about-the-bangs frenzy? You guys are a curious bunch, demanding a post about my hair. Haha. There were even conspiracy theories that they weren’t real and I was pulling a Kim K on you guys by flipping my ponytail and faking them. Hilarious! But they are in fact real. Can’t say the same thing about my chest (just kidding). I just got off the sofa on Saturday afternoon, walked into the bathroom and cut them, came back out and sat on the sofa, and waited for John and Clara to notice. They seemed not to mind them (in fact John said they made me look “young and hot” so I’ll take it) and they do very conveniently cover my forehead wrinkles. So… score!

Because I cut them in the bathroom mirror all by myself, they’re definitely not perfect, but they seem to pass as actual bangs in real life, as opposed to looking like a child who took the kitchen scissors to her head. And since many (many) of you guys demanded a tutorial, here she blows.

I guess we should call this the sister post to the how-I-cut-John’s-hair post that I shared here. It’s pretty straightforward so quite honestly the most awkward part was getting these photos taken. Gah, I’m terrible at posing for John. So it went something like this:

John: click, click, click, “Do you need anything else?”

Me: “Ahh, this is stupid. Nevermind! We’re done.”

John: “What? I only took three photos? You sure?”

Me: “Ok, what about one like this? Ahh, too close. Back up! back up! Maybe we need to buy a lens to make my face artfully blurry.”

John: “Um… ok. So we’re done?”

As for the actual tutorial, it goes like this:

All I did was pull the hair in front that I thought should be bangs (which made a soft curved shape at the crown) forward and then I pulled the rest of my hair back into a ponytail to keep it out of the way. My hair might look ambiguously wet/dry in the picture above, but it’s fully dry.

Which leads us to step 2…

I looked up a few pictures on google of people with blunt bangs just to notice where they stopped. The ones I liked most sort of grazed the eyelashes (good thing I looked since my first instinct would have been to cut them above my eyebrows- eeks!). Then I cut them dry while looking in the mirror with the part of hair that I sectioned out just flopping in front of my face. Cutting them dry is key for me since wet hair can look heavier and longer and then dry and shrink up, thereby ruining your life. Well, that’s a little dramatic, but it can definitely pull a fast one on you, so dry hair seems to work best for ending up with bangs at the actual intended length.

Then I dipped my head into the sink to get my bangs all wet and used a blow-dryer to blow them dry in front of my face. This was helpful because after I dried them a few long stragglers stuck out and I snipped them straight across for a more blunt look. I have a ridiculous cowlick, so I’m trying not to be a crazy about how they fall. Although in this instagram picture there was a funny comb-over effect going on since a few from the other side of my head danced over to that side (hence those few guesses that this was a bang hoax I guess, haha).

Thanks to the aforementioned cowlick, sometimes I pull them apart like this. Just if it’s humid and they’re being wonky. Sorry about this bad self portrait, I was past the point of embarrassment after posing for John, seeing the pictures he took, deleting them in horror, and telling him to back out of the room slowly while whispering “it’s not your fault this is just so awkwaaaard.”

I can still pin them all back with two tiny bobby pins and rock my regular old pony (which I did last night for the Austin signing since it was crazy rainy and my hair + humidity = Frizz-fest 2013). So I guess I get three looks from this little snip-fest: 1) blunt bangs, 2)parted bangs, and 3) no bangs at all thanks to Mrs Bobby and her friend Pins.

Anyway, I hope this quick little tutorial helps someone out there save some money on a bang trim or something. Or just gives you all a good laugh at how uncomfortable capturing these photos actually was for me. It might sound crazy but I’m used to taking pictures of the house, not my mug. So it took me right back to high school yearbook photos and I was all clammy and weird about it. Seriously I didn’t know where to look, how to smile, it was a mess. Anyone else tackling some DIY haircuts at home? Or rocking some freshly shorn bangs? Tell $herdog all about it.


  1. kyle says

    CUUUUUUUUUUTE! I wish I could pull this off but my hair is just the right amount of wavy that I would have to blow dry it every day (not going to happen).

  2. Meredith says

    Your bravery is awe-inspiring! I trim my own bangs and feel rebellious—I would never have the guts to make the initial chop! They’re very fun and flattering on you; I wear mine in the three looks you described as well. Go $herdog!

  3. says

    I love love love them, and this tutorial! I hate being in photographs especially when people want me to pose… so I get the whole, “this is so awkward” thing. Regardless, I miss my blunt bangs. I had them for a long time, and I felt so hip. Maybe it is time to go back to them… hmmm…..

  4. tracy says

    Sherry, you look so amazing! I love the new look. I vote for a pic taken with your hair down with the new bangs!!!! Pretty please…

  5. says

    I wear a wig so I am too terrified to attempt full bangs because if I don’t like them Im still stuck with them (until I get a new wig, but them’s pricy!)

    I have had wigs with bangs before that were cute, but the bangs always needed to be washed an styled and drove me bananas.

    I love yours! They really complement a simple ponytail!

  6. ClareJR says

    The bangs look great! And your photos don’t scream “awkward!” so perhaps the sweaty palms are unnecessary.

  7. Danielle says

    I LURVE the $he-Bangs !! I think it is time we all sing together now : “$he-Bangs, $he-Bangs ! Oh baby when $he-DIYs, $he-DIYs….”. Ok, maybe not…
    I used to have them for a while too, but the longer ones – and with my wavy, frizzy hair – I had to blow dry them DAILY. And that was out of the question when my lovely 3 1/2 daughter arrived in this world, and stole my entire time.
    Cant WAIT to see you guys in Miami tonight – my book has been reserved with them for AGES now ! Ok, at least it seems like it…. And I will have your SuperHero cape on ! <3

  8. Becca says

    They look great! I’ve been trying to work up the nerve (and the emotional stability!) to give my 14 month old baby boy his first haircut! It’s too long and shaggy, especially around the ears, and he need a trim for sure. I cut my hubby’s hair, so I should be able to pull it off…just concerned about getting him to sit still, as well as seeing all that beautiful baby hair strewn across the floor!

    • says

      I’ve been trimming my little guy’s hair for a while now (he’s 15 months old now!). I’ve done it 4 times and had it cut at the salon once.

      I get my little guy to sit still by stripping him down to his diaper, sitting him on the bathroom vanity, and letting the water run into the sink. He plays with a couple different cups while splashing in the water while I trim his hair (using Sherry’s method of usig your index/middle finger as a guide).

      It has worked great! My mom-in-law is a retired cosmetologist and she said it looks wonderful!

      Good luck!!

    • Amy says

      I cut my 2 1/2 year olds hair. I strap him into his booster seat, turn on a movie and give him a special treat (oreos, ice cream, anything to keep his hands full). I’m not going to say he loves it, but it works.

    • JB says

      I cut my son’s hair. (He is 3.) I bring his booster seat into the living room & put on a t.v. program. My SIL used to put her boys on the patio & give them a popcycle for distraction. If I just use scissors my son barely notices, when I razer around his ears, I sometimes need my husband to encourage him to stay still.

  9. Cara says

    I was just thinking about getting bangs again. They look great! I used to cut my dogs hair. The first few times she seriously looked like Mrs. Dreysdale’s poodle after Jethro cut it’s hair. Totally wacky with puff balls and uneven hair tufts everywhere. It is much harder than it looks.

  10. says

    Work it, $herdog! I saw the picture on Instagram and loved it right away. I had blunt bangs when I was younger, and then I went through a phase in middle school and high school where I curled them (wtf?). Then they were long, sideswept bangs for several years until I finally grew them out. But now I’m thinking that was a mistake, because I have trouble doing my hair now that I don’t have any layers in the front! Shoulda just kept them.

    • Alisha says

      I, too, had blunt bangs growing up that started at the top of my head and ended 1/2 an inch above my eyebrows (Mom did love my eyebrows). This paired with my short wide forehead and wicked cowlicks made for some interesting hairstyles. And to trump your middle school bang curling, Paige, mine were actually permed (!!!)…by my mother…For consecutive years. After that I grew them out and my hair never went back to straight so I’ve been rocking wavy hair ever since (perm for life!)
      BUT I always am filled with Bang Envy when I see them on other people and nostalgia for the straight bangs of my youth, although those dreams are dashed by all my hair dresser friends whom flat out refuse to cut bangs on my head. Ever. Again. Probably for the best since styling devices and me are not friends…shoot, we ain’t even acquaintances.

  11. says

    of course you look great :) but the question that remains is: is tere a picture of sherry+bangs+hair down? yeah we like to see every angle ;)

    you always look cute so no worries about the posing’awkardness ;)

  12. ErinY says

    Love the bangs! I was totally on the “Are those real?” train! But I agree you look young, and dare I say, like a hip, European model!

  13. Rachel W. says

    Sherry, you look fantastic with bangs! I like having them–they’re versatile and make even a ponytail look more interesting. And like you said, you can always pin them back if you’re not in the mood to mess with them!

  14. Lena says

    This is exactly how I cut my bangs! Decide on a semi-impulse, then act normal and wait for people to notice haha…people look at me in shock when I tell them that I did it myself but no one’s been able to guess!

    One thing I find works for me is for the initial chop cutting them a little longer than I want them to be and then just trimming to get the right length. The most recent time I did it I left the sides a little longer than the rest so they frame my face more which works better for me. But they look great as is on you!

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