We Asked an Expert How to Trim Your Own Fringe—You Can Thank Us Later

With all of us spending a lot more time at home, we wanted to find out what beauty content you actually wanted to read during this time. So, we asked and a lot of you reached out to us requesting at-home beauty routines and expert guides on how to get those salon-level treatments from the comfort of your own home. One particular request we've seen coming in increasingly as time goes by is for a step-by-step guide on how to trim your own fringe.

Now, if you've ever had a fringe cut in, you'll know how frequently you need to pop into your local salon for a trim. Whether you have a feathered look and it needs thinning out or you've gone for a blunt style and are now struggling to see through it, don't worry. We've got you covered. To start with, we were a little wary of writing this up ourselves given the high stakes. We can certainly write about hair products and hairstyles with expertise all day, but when it comes to picking the scissors up? We always think it's best to get the experts in. (Although, we have enlisted the help of one of Hollywood's top hairstylists to guide you through a full at-home trim.)


(Image credit: @THATCURLYTOP)

When I thought about who to go to for answers we could trust, there was only one person who came to mind. Phoebe Summers is East London's most in-demand bob chopper and blonde-hair colourist, from Hackney- and Brooklyn-based salon Kennaland. Being a fringe bearer herself, she certainly knows a thing or two about trimming those eye-skimming strays. 


(Image credit: @alyssainthecity)

Keep scrolling, then, for Phoebe's step-by-step guide on how to trim your own fringe whilst a salon snip isn't an option. Be sure to follow along with her Instagram video guides as well if you need extra guidance. 

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Make sure your hair is freshly washed, and blow-dry your fringe how you usually like it to sit. Then comb the fringe forward and separate from the sides of the hair by either clipping them out of the way or tucking them behind your ears.

Step 2: Split your fringe into three sections: one directly in the middle in line with your nose and one on either side.

Step 3: Start with the centre section. Use the comb to lay all the hairs flat, and use fingers to set yourself a guide of what length you’d like the fringe to sit at. Once the length is established, use your scissors and use upward motions to snip into the hair below your fingers. Keep doing this until the hair has become very fine.

Step 4: Once the centre has been snipped and the hair is fairly see-through at the ends, use the scissors in the upwards motion again but slightly tilt and snip diagonally. This will start to take off the hair to the length you want it. It’s essential to thin the hair first so you can cut through the hair with ease.

Step 5: Assess the situation! Let the centre section fall, and check that the length looks good. If so, proceed to the right section. Comb the right side into the centre so the middle piece you have already cut joins the side, and clamp fingers in line with the middle section. Using the same upward cutting motion, start to snip the long hair from the right side to join in with the middle.

Step 6: Drop the right side and middle sections and assess. Make sure the middle and the side look connected. This is a good time to clean up any loose hair that may have been left. Once this looks good, repeat Step 5 on the remaining uncut hair on the left-hand side.

Step 7: You should, by now, have trimmed the fringe into shape! Once this is complete, you have the option of taking some weight out, but if you like your fringe very full, then stop here. 

To remove any heaviness or to soften your fringe, divide the fringe into three sections—the same way as Step 2—then elevate each section upward and gently snip into ends. Some hair may fall down, but leave that there. It doesn’t all need to be cut into. Repeat until fringe is soft and weightless. 

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Up next, this is how to cut your own hair if it's curly.

Emily Dawes
Affiliate Editor

Emily Dawes is the very definition of a fashion multi hyphenate. An editor, stylist and writer with over eleven years’ worth of experience in the industry, Emily is known for her impeccable taste, elegant outfit choices and being able to spot the next big thing in fashion from a mile off. Our readers loyally trust her advice and shopping suggestions; so much so she began her own column documenting the most expensive-looking pieces on the high street, which has become a top-performing piece of content for the Who What Wear brand.

Emily has worked for Who What Wear UK since 2020 in a myriad as roles, spanning from contributing editor and branded content editor. Now, she holds the position of affiliate editor and is responsible for the brand’s overall affiliate strategy, ideation and content execution. Working closely with Who What Wear UK’s affiliate manager, Emily has been instrumental in securing and nourishing brand partnerships, surpassing her goals as standard. Leading the team in tentpole shopping moments including Black Friday and Peak Trading, with Emily’s guidance and leadership, team Who What Wear is in a stronger affiliate position than ever before.

Prior to joining the Who What Wear team, Emily served as YOU Magazine’s acting fashion editor where she managed the fashion team and oversaw all fashion content output for the fast-paced weekly title. Emily is a stylist in her own right, having worked with a slew of VIP clients including writer and television personality, Elizabeth Day, as well as styling and art directing several celebrity cover shoots for glossy print publication, Grazia. Her adept fashion knowledge means brands regularly sought out to work with her as a consultant: previously she has developed marketing and content plans for brands for Cocoon and Edge of Ember. Before entering the industry, Emily obtained a Bachelor of Arts in English and American Studies with International Study from Nottingham University. Fun fact: Emily spent a year studying in America which saw her join a sorority during her time there.

When she’s not working or tracking down the chicest, new-in items to share with our audience, you’ll find Emily bestowing her East London home with her stylish flair, reading everything from the classics to cowboy romance novels and escaping to the country with husband, baby boy and dog, Roo, whenever she can.

Emily is currently on maternity leave.