Mastering the Clipper-Over-Comb Haircutting Technique

When it comes to being a professional hairdresser or barber in Singapore, there are an entire suite of basic barbering techniques that you must master in order to perfect your craft. The clipper-over-comb is one such haircutting technique that is not only widely used in a variety of different cuts, but fundamentally essential to delivering haircuts that are even and consistent at the exterior. 

What is the Clipper-Over-Comb Technique?

The clipper-over-comb technique entails using a cutting comb to elevate the hair to a desired projection angle before moving your barber clippers across the comb’s surface to remove the excess length. It is used mainly when defining the hair guideline, but can also be applied for a range of other outcomes as we will further detail in the next section. First, to apply the clipper-over-comb technique: 

  1. Make sure you have your cutting comb held in your less dominant hand and a professional hair clipper — corded or cordless, it doesn’t really matter, albeit cordless hair clippers can make for an easier time when you’re just starting out due to their allowance of a greater range of motion — in your dominant hand.
  2. Using your cutting comb, lift the hair up at a 90-degree angle away from the scalp. Once lifted, angle your comb according to what you would like to achieve through application of the clipper-over-comb technique. The elevation angle of the comb will determine the finished result, and can be altered to achieve different outcomes as desired. For example, having your comb at a 90-degree angle will produce equal hair lengths throughout the section when applying the clipper-over-comb barber technique. However, holding your comb at a 45-degree angle while applying the clipper-over-comb technique will give you more graduated results for tapers and the likes. 
  3. Take your hair clipper and move it up the comb, cutting off the hair that protrudes beyond the teeth of your cutting comb. Your clipper and comb should be held parallel to one another — do not position the comb lower than the clipper and make sure that you always stay consistent in your clipper-over-comb technique.
  4. Apply the clipper-over-comb technique to cut the hair section by section, working from the bottom of the hairline. After you are finished cutting each section, move on to the next one and repeat the above steps.

When Should I Apply the Clipper-Over-Comb Technique?

The thing about the clipper-over-comb barber technique that makes it such an important fundamental to master is that it can be used on many different occasions to get a wide variety of finishes, since you can angle your cutting comb and use different clipper guards for varying results. With that being said, many professional hairdresser and barbers employ this barbering technique for bulk removal and quick trimming work.  

Curated Clipper-Over-Comb Tips for Success

Some tips for success when using the clipper-over-comb technique include:

  • Not wetting the hair too much before performing clipper-over-comb to prevent hair clumping that can cause uneven cuts.
  • Using the hair you’ve already cut as a guide for the angle of your comb can help ensure you cut each section as needed to achieve either consistency or variation depending on the haircut you’re going for.
  • Use your first-cut lengths as a guide for your subsequent cuts to ensure consistency when employing the clipper-over-comb technique.
  • Combing the hair with a wide-toothed comb can help you remove tangles that can affect the end-results and helps you better see how the hair lays naturally against the head. 

Get the Professional Tools Needed to Master Clipper-Over-Comb

Of course, the right set of professional tools can help expedite your mastery of the clipper-over-comb technique and empower you to deliver cleaner cuts for your customers. At Wahl, we leverage an extensive history of innovation and experience to give you the latest in barbering technology through our professional hair clippers and other barber supplies

Shop our cordless hair clippers or corded options at Wahl Singapore today. 

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