5 Ways To Sharpen Hair Scissors: At Home Or Work Like A Professional - Japan Scissors

5 Ways To Sharpen Hair Scissors: At Home Or Work Like A Professional

Cutting hair at home has never been more popular. The only thing you need is a pair of hair scissors, a go get 'em attitude, and some hair to cut. But what happens when you hair scissors aren't as sharp as they used to be?

The most common question we get asked nowadays is "can I sharpen my hair scissors at home?", and we have just the answers you are looking for!

When you scissors start becoming dull and aren't as sharp as they used to be, then its time to sharpen! 

Note: we are generally talking about cutting scissors, but you can scroll down to find out information on sharpening thinning scissors at home!

Option 1: Professional Sharpening Services

Professional hair scissor sharpening

Nothing beats a professional sharpening job, and there are no other general alternatives to compare with at home.

If you have a good pair of scissors, we highly recommend you have them serviced professionally. You can do this for around $30-50 and they should last another year or so.

However, if you are happy with sharpening your scissors at home, then let's take a look at option 2!

Option 2: Sharpen Hair Scissors With A Whetstone

Sharpening hair scissors on a whetstone

You can purchase a whetstone and use this to sharpen your hair scissors at home without any problem.

Use the tension key to separate the hair scissors blades into two.

Soak your whetstone in water or oil overnight, depending on the type that you purchase, and you can start sharpening your hair scissors by hand.

With a slow and steady sliding motion, angle the tip of the blade and push.

Repeat this process ten or fifteen times until you are satisfied with the sharpness.

Once both of these blades have been sharpened, clean the blades, dry them, oil them, and join them back together. The whetstone sharpening process should be complete and you can now cut hair with your scissors!


Option 3: Sharpen Your Hair Scissors With Professional Tools

Amazon.com: BangBang Profession Kitchen Sharpening Tool Scissor Knife Blade  Sharpener Tools With 4 Stones: Kitchen & Dining

From your local hardware store, Amazon or eBay, you can purchase sharpening tools that are great tools for fixing blunt hair scissors. A popular example is the Pro Grind Professional Sharpening tool.

These professional sharpening tools are great at fixing dull hair scissors because:

  • Easy to use and instructional videos are available that explain how to sharpen scissors
  • The sharpening tool locks your hair scissors in place making it safer to sharpen
  • The multi-grind tool will sharpen the edge with an easy repeating process that results in extremely sharp blades

Option 4: Use Glass Or Aluminium Foil

200pcs Square Sweets Candy Chocolate Lolly Paper Aluminum Foil Wrappers  Silver|aluminium paper foil|foil chocolatesilver silver - AliExpress

You can sharpen your dull or blunt hair scissors with simple things around the house. By opening and closing your hair scissors in a slow and controlled movement against a mason jar, you can sharpen your scissors.

You can also use aluminium foil as a cheap solution to sharpening your hair scissors at home. Grab some of this tin foil, fold it a few times so its a slightly dense square or rectangle, then cut through. The goal is to have ten successful complete cutting motions on the metal foil.

Once completed, you scissors should be sharp enough to cut hair. Always remember to clean and sanitise your hair scissors after this process, so that they are clean before you cut your hair at home.


Option 5: Use Alcohol To Sharpen Your Scissors

RIBBA frame minifig display | Brickset | Flickr

Alcohol is good at cleaning and sanitising hair scissors, but not many people realise that when alcohol removes any build-up or debris on the blade, it can actually sharpen them.

Prepare a small bowl or cup of rubbing alcohol, dip your scissors in the alcohol, then use a small clothe, paper towel, or cotton bud to clean the blades. Repeat this ten times on each side of the blades and then wipe off the remaining alcohol with a paper towel.

Your hair scissors should be a little sharper, cleaner and ready to cut hair! 

How Can I Sharpen Hair Thinning Scissors At Home?

There are different techniques for sharpening hair thinning scissors at home. Follow the same steps as any other technique, but do not sharpen the blade with the teeth on them.

For thinning scissors, we recommend sharpening the blade side at home, then simple cleaning the other side with rubbing alcohol to remove any build-up or debris that could affect its cutting performance.

How Can I Test The Hair Scissor Sharpness At Home?

cutting hair at home

Some people may recommend testing on fabric or paper, but this can actually cause damage to your hair scissors.

After you are confident that the blade has been sharpened using any of the above steps, you can test the sharpness by:

  • Opening and closing the scissor blades near your ear. Listen to hear how smooth the cutting motions are. If the tension and sharpness is right, then it should be a nice and smooth sound.
  • Grab a small section of hair between your forefingers and cut the ends off. If the cutting motion is smooth and effortless, then you can be confident that you have successfully sharpened your hair scissors at home.
  • Cut your or somebody else's hair. The ultimate test is simply putting them to use. If you find that they are not sharp enough while cutting hair at home, then simply repeat one of the above steps, then try cutting hair again.

Tips and Tricks To Sharpen Hairdressing Scissors

There are a lot of different hair shear blades available for professional, but are there any hairdressing scissors that don't need sharpening?

Can hairdressing scissors be sharpened back to their original sharpest form?

  • Every pair of hairdressing scissors eventually needs to be sharpened
  • Each cut of each strand of hair wears the blade down
  • Higher quality hairdressing scissors use harder steel that is harder to wear down and requires sharpening less often
  • Cheaper quality steel is softer and will require sharpening more often
  • Hairdressing scissors can be sharpened back to their original sharpness, or sharper!
  • Only use professional hairdressing scissor sharpeners as they will sharpen your shear blades without causing damage

There is a common misconception that some scissors don't need resharpening, but every pair will eventually need sharpening.

Your hairdressing scissors can be sharpened back to their original form, or sharper with the help of an expert.

The harder and higher quality steel requires a skilled touch to ensure the scissors are not damaged while sharpening.

The two main aspects and challenges around sharpening hairdressing scissors are

  • The higher quality scissors with harder steel
  • The scissor blades (convex, bevel, concave, etc.)

If your hairdressing scissor sharpener is unfamiliar or not used to either your quality of steel or scissor blade, then they may cause permanent damage.

We have the best and complete list of hairdressing and barber scissor sharpeners in Australia!

Professional scissor sharpeners that are able to breathe life back into your hair cutting tools!


  • I was lucky to find a great guy that deals with this, he never disappoints. Plus, he’s a few blocks away which makes it extra convenient. He’s precise, affordable and super careful, no insightful scratches or anything. I did the old diy at-home scissor sharpening technique with a set I’ve found at a local store but I never managed to get similar results.



  • The last time I let someone else sharpen my scissors as they did an awful job, they looked so crappy after. If I spend hundreds on my tools I expect them to look pristine! I’ll have to try my hand at this and see if I can pull it through. A bit scared to not mess things up but I’m going for it.



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