4 Tips For Creating A Soft Nape
POV: You’ve just finished up your client’s fresh bob haircut and you are checking it in the mirror and then you see it: The dreaded bell shape. So you try and fix it and you find yourself going shorter and shorter. This is a common problem that we have all run in to at some point. So we asked bob experts Chris Jones (@chrisjones_hair), Carolynn Judd (@styled_by_carolynn), Kara Williams (@haircolorkilla), and Matt Swinney (@matt.swinney) for their tips and tricks to avoid running in to this issue.
Mistake #1: Fighting a cowlick.
Carolynn LOVES using texturizing shears when working in the nape of the neck. “If a client has a really heavy cowlick that’s pushing the hair in a weird way, take the ARC™ Scissors SYMMETRY 30/2 Reversible Blender and go in right at the root and soften the cowlick,” says Carolynn. Trying to apply too much tension on a cowlick can lead to jumps and uneven perimeters and most likely cause you to have to cut the hair shorter to even it out. “Leave an extra ¼ inch as a buffer,” says Carolynn. This will give you some leeway if you have to do any tweaking at the end of your cut.
Mistake #2: Not removing enough hair.
Not removing enough hair will leave you with a bulky, inflated neckline. One way to combat this is to simply get rid of hair! Chris loves to create a soft, tight neckline by using a scissor over comb technique. His scissor of choice? The ARC™ Scissors PARAGON II. Take each section at a slight diagonal forward angle at the nape and scissor over comb as short as you can get it. “Don’t be scared of removing weight. Creating a dramatic undercut will cause the hair to sit closer to the head,” says Chris.
Mistake #3: Too much tension.
“When approaching the nape of the neck, I find it important to use the wide teeth of the comb,” says Matt (@matt.swinney). The goal is to control the hair just enough to keep it in place. Matt loves to use the ARC™ Scissors PHANTOM II to create sharp necklines. “Too much tension is one of the biggest mistakes in my opinion. Also, holding the hair in your fingers can create unwanted elevation. Both of these actions will graduate the nape when you really are looking for that to be blunt for strength,” says Matt.
Mistake #4: Improper head position.
In order to get a super clean neckline, Kara has her clients tilt their head forward. “This gives me the ability to cut a zero elevation line,” says Kara. In addition, this allows Kara to see any hairs that may not be visible. “This allows me to get all the hiding nape baby hairs and give it a really clean finish when they sit up straight,” she says. For this technique, Kara likes to go in with her 6.5 inch ARC™ Scissors PARAGON II.
Pro Tip: Be sure to take super fine sections when working with thick curly hair. “The smaller the section, the cleaner the line will be,” says Kara.