You weren’t the only one screaming ‘nooooooooooo’ at your TV when Hannah (Lena Dunham) cut her own hair during the season finale of HBO’s Girls. The cringe-worthy moment—the climax of her anxiety-driven breakdown—was enough to turn anyone brave enough to do a DIY chop off the idea. But, if you must, we caught up with celebrity hairstylist Tommy Buckett of the Marie Robinson Salon (@mariesalon) in New York to find out how to do it with more success than Hannah Banana. To start, don’t look at a picture, like she did. “If you have a picture that you’re trying to replicate, you’re probably setting yourself up for failure,” said Buckett, who is responsible for the gorgeous cuts seen on Emma Stone, Elisabeth Moss, and Ashlee Simpson. “When one decides to cut their own hair, it’s usually an impulse decision, so just go for it and have fun!” Herewith, his four top tips:
1. EDGY LOOKS WORK
“This will typically work best with a much edgier look,” said Buckett. “Think Kurt Cobain, Edie Sedgwick, or Debbie Harry.”
2. CUT YOUR HAIR WHEN IT IS DRY
“Always cut your hair dry so you can see what’s happening while you’re doing it. [It will help to] work with your natural texture.”
3. INVEST IN SCISSORS, AT THE VERY LEAST
“Go and buy a decent pair of scissors at a beauty supply store,” he said. (Try Sally Hansen’s Do Your Do Styling Shears; $12 at ulta.com.) “And it’s probably best to ask a friend to help out with the back.” Just not a guy like Laird!
4. YES, YOU CAN DO LAYERS
“For layers, just grab where you think you need them and cut slowly,” suggested Buckett. “Another way to cut layers on your own is to tip upside down and chop into the hair. You can always cut more hair, but you can never go back!”
Plus, get more inspiration for your next hair makeover with these celebrity hair and style updates.