How to Create Invisible Layers or Internal Layers

When you have a layered haircut, the layers are often obvious. But sometimes you want to achieve an invisible or internal layer cut. This is where the layers are so subtle that it’s hard to tell where one layer starts and another ends. Invisible/internal layers can help you achieve a natural look with lots of movement and texture. Learning how to create them may very well be the “icing on the cake” for your next haircut!

Video Transcript

hi friends Andrew Carruthers education director for Sam via today we're going to tackle something we see becoming quite the trend out there and that's invisible by years we've even heard the term coined of ghost layers and what is the guest looking for when they ask for these kinds of things well they're looking for the benefit of layers which is fullness and texture and movement in the body but what they don't want to see is they don't want to actually see layers so we're gonna work in a really orderly process that can be used on fine hair medium hair thick hair whoever sits in your chair but if they're looking for movement texture fullness all those things but don't want surface visible layers we've got a technique that I think you're gonna really enjoy so let's get after it when working with a technique like this which is pretty much mainly just texturizing types of techniques it's still really important to work in a structured fashion one of the things that can happen with a technique like this is especially if you go over the same section too many times you could end up leaving some really big weak spots or even holes within your haircut so we want to address this in a way that has the same type of intent and purpose behind it as we would any other haircut so we're going to part off first the back area of the hair that has all of the density to it so we're gonna part just forward of what we call the horizontal transition where the head starts to change and round but what we're really looking for with this parting is that we want to see where the hair density changes so you can see right there right where the hairline on Lydia pops up that's where the density is going to change on her hair so we'll start by taking vertical sections straight up from that hairline to just again mark off where the density changes then we are going to take a horizontal section across the head now the size of this section depends on a few things we would suggest that for finer hair or medium hair the sections are slightly larger for thicker hair that the sections are slightly thinner now with finer hair or medium hair we're looking to do this technique to not only create separation but we would also really like to create some inflation some volumes of fullness so our technique is going to be underneath up and out so if you think about the principle of short hair and long hair short hair tends to be more structurally rigid than long hair so when we take hair and we create short to long whichever direction that short along goes that's the way the hair is going to be in to move so if I take a vertical section which we are going to do and we cut from the bottom first and work shorts along this way that is going to influence the hair to want to expand outward so what type of hair textures do you think that that's going to be best for fine to medium hair for thicker hair textures we're going to want to do the opposite and we're going to want to do smaller sections because we're going to want to make more small holes within the hair from the top down because what we don't want to do is on thick hair is we don't want to create some points in here that have a lot of short hair because even if we're working short along from the top down we could create a area of so much density of short hair that it creates expansion within that thicker hair the goal with this type of cutting within thicker hair types we would be taking smaller sections work from top to bottom and taking less hair out on each section with medium to fine hair we're going to be doing kind of the exact opposite we want to be a little bit more deliberate with this hair texture because what we you do want to create is some strength of short hair sitting underneath this long hair so that it gives it something to support now this isn't magic potion kind of stuff this isn't just automatically gonna take fine hair and inflate it into something really full and big and especially if the fine hair has less density to it it's actually kind of thinner side then we want to be really cautious with this technique because you get too aggressive and you're gonna leave that ends looking super skinny and wispy and that's not good either so Lydia here has a pretty much medium hair texture she's got a good density we're taking I would call that about an inch and a half thick section we're going to introduce the shear this is the artist series slide cutting shear it's particularly good for these kind of techniques where we're to be moving as we cut we're going to introduce the shear underneath and we want to kind of look for that natural bend in the air if we blouse the hair we'll see a natural Bend and as long as we stay on the outside edge of that natural bend we shouldn't create sprout enos because that kind of shows us where the hair softens to its own weight so we'll give it a little blouse we see right there so that's where it will enter and the technique is working short to long and I'm using a little bit of tension on the hair and a little bit of pressure with that shear again because the slide cutting shear is so forgiving it's incredibly soft and it's actually intended to naturally push the hair so we want to work structurally because we want to leave that piece alone and I'll take the next section we're working in about a one-inch section then again find that Bend we want to start around the same place the relatively the same place on each strand but it's okay and it's actually somewhat beneficial is if it isn't perfectly the same spot on every single section now if it's two sections out here and then one section there that is going to look a little odd it's gonna create some imbalance within the shape so try to be somewhat consistent but also be okay with the fact that it's going to be somewhat inconsistent because it's beneficial so many of you are probably thinking well I don't have a slide cutting shear so how do I do this so I'll find that gap on the next section I'll grab a different shear more of a normal cutting shear and I'll show you how to do this with a regular shear even with the slide cutting shear because again it is a very soft shear and it's meant specifically to allow the hair to push you can see that it has this natural curvature to the blade even with this we want to not just close the blade because it's going to catch hair fold err potentially cut too much hair off so we're just kind of talking the shear through the err a loose opening and closing as we move up this strand alright so let's take our next section we want to be consistent with the size of these sections so we'll take that about inch and a half that we have there we're gonna just continue working up the head through the back area which is the densest area and it's dense for a couple reasons not just because there's a lower hairline but just even from an aspect of thinning the donut area kind of through here is naturally predisposed up predisposed to not thin and I did forget one thing before you drop that section luckily I can see right where I stopped before you take that section down take another clip and put it on top of the section that you just cut because what that does is helps you to know where not to cut you see how organized we're working this is something that you know you've seen a lot of like I just kind of take the section and create some short too long from inside out nothing wrong with that but if you do that throughout the entire head it's going to be difficult to be consistent and you're going to have areas that are still kind of thicker and thinner this is gonna give you the ability to be a little bit more consistent so I'm gonna grab a little shear this is just the five and a half inch streamline shear this is probably the shortest blade in earth in our arsenal mmm well I guess we do have the swivel shear to the five and a half swivel but just to show you that you can view this with this pretty much any shear because typically we would like to do this with a slightly longer blade but what's great about this technique is you could really do it with any shear now the main difference is with this year what's blouse we can see that curvature out there the main difference is when I go to close this is going to cut some hair so I need to be incredibly gentle with the tie so with the slide cutting shear we put lots of tension and even a little bit of pressure onto the hair as we were cutting with a regular shear that is meant to grab a hold of the hair and cut cleanly take another one-inch section let that blouse with s-type type of shear we want to be really really cautious and careful and you'll notice I'm almost kind just like softly stroking it down the hair strand so that it just really is kind of peeling some pieces out of that next section I'm getting about four sections across the back of course that's gonna depend on the size of their head and also notice that the shear is not coming in real perpendicular to the hair strand I'm trying to get it real parallel to the hair strand again because that's going to remove less hair blast that out find my entry point just real gently peeling that hair away as we move down the section now again the purpose of this is to create those shorter bits moving to longer bits from the underneath out to support some more fullness to the hair if we were doing this to deflate the hair to actually remove the weight and to get it to hopefully collapse a little bit we would work from the top down alright before we go to the next section let's take this bottom clip out before we go anywhere let's just kind of tickle the hair a little bit and see how we're feeling seeing if we're getting the movement and texture that we want and that's looking actually quite nice what we want is we don't want to see the ends get thin because people aren't looking for thin wispy ends they're just looking for that separation and texture so if you do the first section and you're noticing the section looked a little thin and wispy to it on the next section increase the thickness and increase the width of that section so that as you drop that down it'll add some weight back into that perimeter so I'm going to work in the exact same technique through the next two sections going through the crown here [Music] okay as we get up into the crown one little cautionary point be cautious of growth patterns because if they have a really strong sprouty point throughout the crown a really strong growth pattern by putting too much short hair there you can add strength into that growth pattern so as you let the hair fall down take notice to how it wants to fall this piece is fantastic there's nothing I have to concern be concerned about so it let it last a bit and again just gently peel that hair from short to long mmm out to the ends being careful to make sure that you're leaving those ends fully intact there because that's what this particular guest is asking for they don't really want to see a lot of surface layering they just want to see the movement and body of layering now here we are getting into an area that even on the mannequin head they implant a swirl to make it more realistic which is awesome thank you pivot point for doing that with that mmm we again want to take the hair give it a little blouse and see where it bends you can kind of see that even this it's it's sort of giving me a blouse further out here which is great because that's hopefully what the hair will show you but if you're concerned at all you can start out a little bit further because that little bit of extra weight that you're going to leave by starting out further will minimize the risk of that growth pattern taking over and wreaking some havoc you can always do a little bit more remember that principle you can always take more hair off but if we get a little crazy and make a big fat hole there that's something that's not super fixable so we can see we get this really nice soft texture now when they kind of tickle the hair a little bit the great thing is is some of those shorter pieces that we cut on that upper surface they are going to pop through a little bit so it's going to give some movement through here it's not going to look one length but it's going to start to give them some body and texture and some fullness as we step on to these sides there's a couple little warning areas we'll go back into the same size section and when we do that go ahead and take the clip and clip all that back hair out of the way for the same reason we want to make sure we protect that hair that we've already previously cut so that we don't cut it twice one thing that I did forget to mention in the back hairline that I'll mention here be a little bit cautious because if you have guests that they pull their hair up and do hype buns really often you want to be a little bit cautious with this because if they do that really often and you cut a bunch of short hair underneath when they pull that up that short hairs gonna fall down if they pull more of a low ponytail just for a workouts and stuff this isn't a big deal but if they do the high bun high ponytail something like that you may want to start maybe about I don't know a half an inch or so up on the head shape so that you leave some hair on the perimeter that when they pull that up it'll help them mask those shorter hairs so we're going to just continue as if she does not do that because we've already started that way this section over top of the ear nothing special if they do have some growth patterns which do sometimes happen here around the ear you might want to be a little bit cautious and even just that density around here can also start to thin out a bit and if that happens we also want to be a little cautious on how much we were moved right there at the perimeter on the front hairline we definitely want to be a little cautious because again if she's someone that pulls her hair back away from her face she pulls it back into a ponytail if we get kind of a chunk of shorter hair right here on the face that could be problematic for her so one way that you could do this is you could work slip diagonal from the ear forward so you're still producing some shorter hair on the interior but you're keeping it kind of behind that front hairline so that was a little short hang on get the blouse there's the end of my blouse so I'll work just really soft from the ear and almost like I'm over directing forward and working short to long towards her face now so that we were still getting some shorter hair under there to give it some texture and movement but from the front she's not gonna see any short pieces all around that front hairline so I'm gonna continue working up this side and then the exact same thing as we step off to her opposite side we're going to work in the exact same movement science same sections elevations about 90 degrees horizontal to the floor that's gonna be a good elevation because it's going to keep things very very soft if you do happen to make a little bit of an aggressive cut or something by the time it falls back down a natural fall it's gonna soften out if you do this at super low elevation a chunk like that could be really visible so I'm gonna continue on [Music] as we get into the last section here on the top again same thing is we were talking about in the crown just be a little bit cautious here if you get too aggressive at this point you could potentially leave her with some chunks of hair that are strong enough that they could pop through that surface and cause some kind of kick outs so on top here give it a little blouse right there is that entry point think about I don't know right there underneath that that actually should be okay because of that shorter piece would be just falling kind of roundness of the head if my last section was up here further that might be a little scarier to do something like that and not have it show through so if you're worried just just go ahead and follow your fingers out a little bit farther before you start the motion of the shear and that's gonna give you some protection remember guys you can always cut more hair off great rule of thumb that just constantly remind yourself of just give that a little blouse find where that wants to start it is important to work from their natural part on this hopefully they usually stay with a similar part because if they're going to flip the part back and forth the only thing you have to be a little careful of is making sure that so for example right now we're cutting that shortest hair right here so let's say she says well I my part back and forth you know I'll sometimes I'll grab it from over here and flip it to the other side that would make this shortest point sit right on the surface and because it's going further over to the opposite side of the head that's really gonna appear as a very very short point if your guest has that particular need where they want to flip it back and forth and back and forth we would suggest to make sure you're not placing those shortest hairs anywhere above that vertical transition or the to the head that's gonna protect you then through the top maybe just more kind of like really soft texturizing instead of being so deliberate alright last section here and again this is something we don't want to risk getting to too much short hair right around her face so we'll work from kind of behind this section move forward and we're starting a little bit longer and let that fall so that way those shorter bits from the inside just aren't right along the perimeter go ahead and take all of your Clips out at this point comb through the hair make sure that all the loose hairs have fallen out give it a little shake and a feel Sam says that texturizing is all eyes and feel and that's so true one of the things we want to make sure we do is as we're working you know if you can close your eyes really tune into your hands make sure you're not feeling any thick areas or density but the mirror is such a great tool at this point you know really looking in the mirror with the guests and have them put their hands through it see how they're feeling where they feel like there's too much density still this is actually feeling pretty darn good but you can see why it's so important to work in a structured manner and to do this with intent and purpose if we just kind of took random sections and just kind of jabbed at it we would risk having thin area here thick area here maybe a super big hole right around the ear there's a lot of problems that could come up so last thing let's get a little product under her hair let's go really simple this time let's go shine flash zero two it's just enough of a product that it's going to help to show off some of that texture we're gonna get the hair moving with the hands and then shine flash gets introduced from pretty far back away from the hair we don't want to get too close with product we want it to to distribute evenly and softly through the hair and really mainly we want that product to distribute through the ends of the hair more so than through kind of like the scalp and mid strand most of the time product that we're looking to add visual texture we're gonna want to keep that in Hibbs and ends all right so let's review the key points here first we want to divide off that area that is got a ton more hair back here behind the hairline from the front start with about an inch and a half section across the back that horizontal section if it's finer hair you can use a wider section so you leave a little bit more density per section if it's thicker hair go ahead and skinny up those sections so that you can create more holes within the hair but kind of smaller pieces and also remember if you're working with thicker hair that you're trying to beef light work from the top of the section down rather from the underneath section then continue those one and a half inch sections remember when you get up to the crown area be very careful of those swirls over top of the ear and across the back hairline and be cautious if the guest is someone that wants to pull their hair up into high ponytails high buns make sure you leave them a little bit of a masking piece just right at the hairline so when they pull that up it collects those shorter hairs into that bun or ponytail also around the front hairline work from behind this section towards the face so that you're not putting shorter hairs right there next to the face hopefully this is something you can introduce to your clients that are looking for a more fullness texture and movement but they don't want to actually see surface layers in their haircut if you have any questions or comments please leave them we'd love to hear from you guys thank you so much for watching I'm Andrew Carruthers education director for Sambia [Music] [Music]

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