There are both pros and cons to shaving your hair when wet or dry.
I am no hairdresser. These are just things I’ve noticed after shaving my own hair, wet or dry, regularly for the past 2 years.
Overall, it can be easier to shave natural, curly/kinky (black) hair wet when using a clipper (I’ve never shaved my head with a razor). But of course, it depends on different factors like the length of the hair, its thickness, how tangled it is at the time of shaving…, and that’s what I’ll be discussing here.
Also, I said wet but I don’t mean dripping wet. Damp hair is a good middle.
Pros and cons of shaving your hair when dry
Although I usually shave my hair dry, it’s not always the best way to do it.
But I am lazy and, I mean, shaving hair when dry works too. It’s just that clipping your hair when it’s completely dry is not always ideal.
When not to shave hair when dry
I don’t particularly take care of my hair in winter because… it’s annoying and I’m busy/lazy. And so, during that time, my hair is just left uncared for and growing for many months.
As a consequence, when comes spring, my hair is longer and less moisturized. My scalp is a bit irritated (due to a lack of moisture and care), and since I practically live in hats days and nights for months, my hair is super dry.
With this in mind, if I go straight for the clipper and try a dry shave, then I will usually have to deal with the following.
- Hair gets stuck in the removable combs of my clipper;
- It takes more time to shave my hair because I have to stop every 15 seconds to remove hair from the comb of the clipper;
- Scalp gets even more irritated because I have to go over each section so many times;
- In the end, it can be a bit painful (nothing dramatic though).
When to shave hair when dry
In spring, summer, and fall, I shave my hair a lot more regularly. Every 2, 6, or 12 weeks, depending on my mood.
During that time, I almost 100% shave my hair when dry because it hasn’t grown long enough for curls, kinks, or knots to be an issue.
And so, I just grab the clipper and do a quick dry shave before jumping in the shower.
This works just fine.
Pros and cons of shaving your hair when wet
I’ve only recently started clipping my hair when wet. I just run it quickly under the faucet sink and remove the excess water with a towel.
I started doing this after noticing that my scalp was definitely more sensitive and itchier after winter. I noticed that when shaving my head dry, I ended up having to do it at least twice to get a clean cut.
Overall, dry shaving longer, more tangled, dry, and curly hair (coupled with an itchy scalp) was:
- Taking me a lot of time;
- I had to do it at least twice (like on two different days). And so, you have to clean up twice btw;
- My scalp was a lot more irritated (and even painful) for a few days;
- Overall, it was a bigger pain in the b*tt!
And so, I decided to try shaving my hair when damp. I noticed a few pros and cons:
- The process of actually shaving your head is significantly quicker and smoother;
- I only have to do it one time. So, just one bathroom clean-up!
- My scalp feels a lot less irritated and painful during and after;
- My hair still gets tangled in the clipper’s comb (because it’s so long);
- Also, now, since the hair is wet, it’s a bit more… sticky (?). You are left with hair stuck everywhere! On your skin, your hands, the floor, the clippers blade. You have to constantly rinse everything out as you go;
- It’s still faster than dry clipping though.
If it’s your first time shaving your hair
Whether you shave your hair wet or dry, in this post right here, I recommend cutting your hair before shaving it, to make the process easier for you in every possible way.
If it’s your first time shaving your hair, then I strongly recommend reading this post.
Related post: Do this before shaving your head for the first time
Overall, when it comes to whether or not you should shave your hair wet or dry, the answer is… to try both.
Honestly, I don’t know if there’s A “good” and A “bad” way of doing it. It really depends on every person’s situation, hair type, context, etc.
So, there you have it. If you are still hesitant about shaving your head, check out these articles: