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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                  November 1, 2014

SCULPTED HAIR OR JUST A BAD CUT?

In order to understand what sculpted hair is it is necessary to understand the other predominant form of haircutting, precision hair cutting.

What is Precision Haircutting?

Precision haircutting was developed by Vidal Sassoon in the 1960s and codified by Paul Mitchell in the 1970s and 80s. It is based on geometric shapes superimposed over the head of the wearer. This form of cutting completely ignores the irregularities of the head and hair in favor of a regimented system of hair cutting. It was adopted by the beauty industry as a standardized method because beauty schools needed a way to teach a growing number of students in a short period of time. Precision haircutting enabled schools to churn out a large number of students that were proficient in basic hair cutting without having to teach them the elements of artistic design which were much more complicated to grasp.

In a precision haircut the objective is to cut the hair in a manner that blends smoothly from one section of the head to another. The hair in each section is typically cut the same length and then the various sections are tied together with transitional cuts to blend the sections together. The result is a uniform haircut. Precision haircuts can be “checked” for uniformity by holding the hair out from the head and looking for longer or shorter hair. Any hair that protrudes from the uniform cut hair is typically cut off to achieve overall uniformity. Precision hair cutting is typically done with scissors or clippers.

What is Hair Sculpting?

Hair sculpting is a much more complicated form of cutting and styling hair that requires a greater understanding of artistic principles, cutting techniques, as well as hair growth and patterns. Hair sculpting takes into account not only the whole person as a part of the design but also the shape of the head, shape of the face, where the hair grows more, where there is less hair, the pattern of hair growth, and how to balance all those considerations into a pleasing design that is easy to maintain. Hair sculpting is not necessarily evenly cut, there may be long pieces of hair next to shorter pieces of hair depending on the look and texture the stylist is trying to achieve. Hair sculpting is done using a variety of hair cutting techniques and tools. There is really no way to "check" a sculpted cut other than to look in the mirror, if it looks good it's a good cut and style.

Stylists that are stuck on precision hair cutting as the "correct" method of haircutting are missing some of the key elements necessary to become a true artist and to deliver that artistry to their clients. They are acting more as a technicians rather than as an artist.

Clients whose stylist is stuck on precision haircutting are being underserved if they are looking for a style that is tailored to their specific requirements.

Mr. Van Voorhees produces both precision haircuts and sculpted hair designs, but prefers hair sculpting.

Clients need to be aware of the variations in different cutting styles of the stylist they are using in order to obtain the optimal results for their particular style and circumstance.

Both precision hair cutting and hair sculpting have their place, but if you are looking for a truly artistic cut and style you might want to consider allowing your stylist to sculpt your hair in a manner that balances and enhances your best features while minimizing your lesser ones.  


Jonathan Van Voorhees of SPRING STREET HAIR DESIGN is introducing the concept of hair sculpting as opposed to the idea of precision hair cutting to consumers in the Tyler, Texas area.

Mr. Van Voorhees has been a stylist since 1976. He has written two books on hair design, and he worked as a stylist and make up artist in theater, video, and film. His styles have appeared in newspapers and magazines nationwide.



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