BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images

Having the right selection of tools is key to achieving a perfect haircut. Aside from the heating and styling tools, you will also need cutting implements like shears and scissors. Once your collection is complete you will still need to learn how to use each one. A common area of confusion is the knowing difference between blending and thinning shears and when to use each one.


Both blending and thinning shears are meant to change to look of a hairstyle rather than to shorten length, but each serves different purposes. When excessive bulk is present in various areas of the style, thinning shears are used to reduce and alleviate the bulk without removing style. Blending shears on the other hand remove minimal amounts of hair to actually create a natural transition and erase cutting lines from the first stage of styling.


One of the main physical differences between thinning and blending shears is the arrangement of teeth. Blending shears have one straight, solid blade like regular scissors and one blade that features a row of toothed-grooves. Thinning shears have two blades of teeth and no solid blade. The teeth on thinning shears are wider to remove more bulk while blending teeth are finer in order to create a less distinguishable difference in each cut.

Correct Usage

Once you have cut the hairstyle to the correct length you can then use thinning shears to lighten and thin out the hair wherever you want. Further styling will be needed once you have thinne, because the shears will not give a polished effect. After both shortening and thinning, you can proceed with the blending shears. Use the blending shears to finish off the hairstyle and complete the look you are going for.

Things to Avoid

Make sure to avoid a few things when using your tools in order to prevent damaging the hair. Never use blending shears higher than 3/4 inch above the tips of the hair, always stay near the bottom. Thinning shears though should not be used at the tips or the roots and must be used strictly in the middle region of the hair. Do not make large cuts with thinners, or too much hair will come out.

About the Author

Leah Perry

Leah Perry has been writing articles, product descriptions and content since 2006 for websites like My Dear Child, Modular Kitchen Cabinets and On Track Lighting. The subjects of her works span topics from children to home and garden, home improvement, sewing and cooking.