Edging up usually refers to African America male hairstyles and means putting the final touches on the cut, so the lines are fresh and sharp. However, what used to refer to simply neatening up the hairline has now developed into an art. Intricate designs are created using everyday male grooming tools, such as electric razors and trimmers, but with techniques that take a steady hand and many hours of patience to master.
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On his website, Barber Alex Campbell recommends using a precision trimmer for accuracy. Precision trimmers are used to remove stray hairs, particularly from facial hair or sideburns, but can be used to make elaborate designs in short African American hair. It is recommended that unless you really know what you're doing, you should get someone with plenty of experience to do the designs for you. Start the trimmer and gently cut the design into the hair. Use short light strokes until you have made the line that you want. Between cutting, regularly brush the hair to make sure that all the strands are sitting in their natural place and won't obscure the line when it is finished. Slowly cut the design into the hair, making sure that if the pattern has parallel lines, they are evenly spaced.
General hairline straightening around the back, sides and front of the head can be done with a good quality electric razor. As demonstrated in the You Tube video "Line Up Edge Up Taper With Spritz Technique Cut", you should place the shaver on the area that needs to be cut and then flick downwards. Then move the razor to the next area and do the same. Be careful around the ears, as the razor is sharp. Decide on the shape of the sideburns and carefully cut around the area. Never drag the razor around the hairline, as this is sure to produce an uneven line.
For precision areas in the hairline, such as around the forehead, a razor blade is often used. In his instructional video "How to Use Razor Blade Techniques Like a Hollywood Barber," Alex Campbell recommends first spraying the area with water, so that the razor does not catch on the skin and leave ugly marks. Wipe the excess water off with a damp cloth, pull the skin semi-tight and carefully cut away any unwanted hair in the hairline. Do so by holding the razor at an angle and cutting in a downward motion.
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