Hair thinning shear types

Updated July 20, 2017

Thinning shears, also known as texturing shears, are shears with 'teeth' used by hair stylists to thin out thick hair and add texture. They range in size and are defined by the width between the teeth and the number of teeth on the sheer. There are multiple brands, colours and handle types. Thinning sheers can be used on all hair types (use with discretion on already thin or thinning hair) including babies, and dogs.

Single-Sided Thinning Shears

Single-sided thinning shears have teeth on one blade and the second blade is a straight edge. The common number of teeth for a standard thinning shears is between 30 and 35 teeth. Shears of this size are used for the general thinning of hair during a cut. Typically the hair is sectioned off, held out and cut horizontally in thirds; that is one cut on a section of hair about one-third from the root and again one-third of the way from the ends. On shorter hair one snip about halfway from the roots to the ends will do, according to, depending on how long and thick the hair is. This process makes curly hair curlier, and thick hair more manageable. Standard thinning shears can be used on wet or dry hair, and come in multiple brands and handle styles. Angels 'N' More suggests using the single-sided shears on babies for thinning out thick hair evenly.

Double-Sided Thinning Shears

Both blades on the double-sided thinning shears have teeth. These shears also have between 30 and 35 teeth. Like the single-sided thinning shears, the double-sided thinning shears are also used for thinning and lightening hair during a haircut. They can be used in the same way as single-sided shears. However, with the double-sided thinning sheers the hair is removed in finer sections so they should be used for a softer look. According to Angels 'N' More, the double-sided thinning sheers can also be used on babies for "delicate and light thinning" to give the hair body.

Wide-Tooth Thinning Shears

The wide-tooth thinning shears come with 10 to 14 teeth. According to, these shears are best used for fringe and at the nape of the neck. states that the wide-tooth thinning shears are best used for people with thick or curly hair because more hair is removed and in bigger chunks, but never cut the hair with wide-tooth thinning shears too near the roots or ends of the hair. These shears are also good for using on dogs with thick shaggy hair.

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About the Author

Libby Walkup comes from Fargo, like the movie, but not. She studied literature, publishing and creative writing at Minnesota State University Moorhead and has earned a master’s degree in creative writing at Bath Spa University, Bath, England. She is a published fiction writer, poet, blogger and journalist. She has been published in "Red Weather Literary Journal" and Triond; she began writing professionally in 2009.