When a stylist is looking to purchase a thinning, blending, or notching shear, what are the important factors for the barber or stylist should consider?
1. What is the percentage of hair that the thinning shears will remove? When hair is trapped between the metal tooth and the cutting blade of the thinning shear, the hair is cut. If the hair falls between the cutting teeth, it is left behind. The less space between the teeth, the more hair is going to fall to the floor. The hair, which is cut off, is called the "cut percentage". Most standard thinning shears remove 35-40% of your client's hair. The larger the percentage, the more hair is removed with each cut.
2. What is the shear's tooth pattern? A 40-tooth evenly-spaced standard thinning shear and a a 5-tooth notcher might each remove 35% of the hair (i.e., have a 35% cut percentage), but the effect one shear will give is radically different from the other. The standard thinning shear will take off weight evenly, while the 5-tooth notcher will be deliver much more of a shattered effect. Looking at how the metal teeth are aligned will help the stylist determine if the shear is right for them.
3. Shear length. Like standard cutting shears, thinning, blending, and notching shears come in different lengths. These lengths generally range from short (5.0"-5.5") to long (6.0-6.5"). The stylist or barber should select a shear that gives them good control without feeling too long or short.
In summary, by looking at the length of the shear, the cut percentage, and the tooth pattern of the thinning or blending shear, the barber or stylist should be able to select a shear that best suits their needs.