Once upon a time, long, long ago, hairdressers all used what we would now call barbering scissors. Most of the techniques used today had not been invented and all the scissors were hand-made, two piece and made of high carbon steel (the type that turns black and rusty). Hairdressers and barbers kept their scissors greased when not being used and wrapped in greaseproof paper.
Every hairdresser and barber would own many pairs of scissors, each would be used until they needed sharpening (usually four to six weeks) at which time they were put aside and the next pair were used. Scissors were not cheap to buy in those days, one pair was roughly equal to one weeks wages, but you could not get by without at least five pairs.
Times changed, the last thirty years has seen dramatic improvements in technology and edges - with the Japanese style high precision blade. Alas, the sharpening man, with his portable grindstone was not able to sharpen this new type of scissor which was far more complex a task. In frustration, hairdressers got into the habit of using their scissors until they were dead blunt, throwing them out and buying a new pair.
The last ten years has seen the availability of Japanese factory level servicing in Australia and having your scissors sharpened and serviced to a high level of expertise is relatively easy (be careful, the portable grindstone guys are still out there, if in doubt...DON'T!). So, for all you hairdressers who still only own one pair of scissor, here's some good reasons to buy a spare pair.
1. You will always be sharp
Having a spare pair means that if you drop or damage your scissors, you can immediately carry on without the hassle of borrowing a pair.
2. You will save money
Reputable scissor servicemen will charge you for pick-up and the use of a lend out if you don't have a spare pair. Having a spare pair will save you this extra cost.
3. A spare pair for the kids
We all know that children move around a lot when they're having their hair cut, the chances of your scissors ending up on the floor is greatly increased. That spare cheaper pair is just the thing to use in this case.
4. A spare pair for the moes
Facial hair is three to four times thicker. Fine delicate edges are easily damaged when trimming beards and moustaches.
5. Your scissors will last longer
Rotating your scissors means that you don't have to use them until they are dead blunt while you wait for the scissor man to do his rounds. Most good scissors are designed to be sharpened between five and ten times. I've seen good scissors wrecked and unrepairable before they have had their first service - the hairdresser used them for far too long as he/she didn't have a spare pair.
6. A long blade comes in handy
Your spare pair can be your long blade. I recommend that your long blade is 0.5 to 1 inch longer than your standard cutting scissors. Use your long blade for cutting scissor over comb, long hair sections and bulk removal.
7. Fine tips also come in handy
Have one of your scissors modified with extra fine tips for cutting perimeters, around ears, against the skin, or a touch up scissors for under bobs etc. I recommend that your scissors with fine tips be a maximum of 5.3 inches in length. Long scissors with fine tips don't cut well at the tips
:) happy cutting!
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