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How To Trim A Mustache With Scissors Like A Pro

Trimmers were a big thing a while back, but more and more men are now choosing to switch back to a trusty pair of scissors for trimming their mustaches. You’re about to learn how to trim a mustache with scissors like an absolute pro. 

To put it simply, if you trim a mustache with scissors you will save some extra bucks even as you give yourself a glow-up. 

While trimmers offer speed, scissors offer control. As long as you’re careful and patient, scissors are less likely to mess up your work. Moreover, scissors will allow you to trim your target areas without taking off too much from other areas. 

When it comes to scissors, it’s important that you take your time and not rush it. In the end, you will be rewarded with clean and neat trim that oozes sophistication. 

Familiarizing yourself with the techniques of trimming your mustache with scissors will go a long way in ensuring that your trim looks elegant but natural. This article will teach you the ropes of how to master this intensely masculine art.

How To Trim A Mustache With Scissors In 7 Steps

This step-by-step routine will help you achieve that perfect trim without setting a foot outside the house. There are different styles of mustaches that you can go for, and it really depends on the look that you’re trying to achieve.

This routine is universal and applicable for a basic trim irrespective of your mustache style.

Before you begin trimming, you should gather everything you will need, so there are no interruptions. 

  • Fine-toothed comb
  • Boar bristle brush (for long mustaches)
  • Trimming scissors
  • Beard oil
  • Maybe some beard wax

Ideally, you should trim your mustache at least once a week so that it retains its shape.

1. Wash and dry your mustache

You can’t begin painting on a dirty canvas, right? So your first step should be to wash your mustache as thoroughly as possible to get rid of any oil residue. Clean hair is easier to trim, and you will have better control over the scissors when making the cuts.

After you’re done, dry your mustache with a towel so that it’s freshly spruced up for a trim. Wet hair strands can give the illusion of being longer than they actually are, which could lead you to cut off more than you intended. 

You can also shampoo and condition the mustache beforehand so that it’s soft and easy to manage.  

2. Comb, comb, comb

Do not underestimate the power of combing through your mustache before your trim because it can make all the difference in the world. 

Make sure that there are no tangles and straighten all the strands so that it becomes easier for you to trim. 

Initially, you can use a small fine-toothed mustache comb and then follow it up with a boar bristle brush if your mustache is long enough to benefit from one. 

Combing will allow you to gauge the actual length of the hair strands in your mustache. Using an anti-static, pearwood or sandalwood comb will usually lead to the best outcome.

You have the option of combing the hair strands towards the center if you want a straight finish at the bottom. For an angular cut, comb the hairs in the direction of their growth.

3. Shape your mustache one cut at a time

The first thing that you have to do is sculpt the shape of the mustache. Grip your scissors and start making small cuts along the bottom line of the mustache. It depends on your preference whether you start from the middle and work your way to the sides or vice versa. 

When you’re trimming, always look as straight as possible so that you do not make any angular mistakes. If you keep a neutral and straight position it will be easier for you to achieve a straight line.

Moreover, you will be able to keep an eye on what you’re doing. If you want a straight edge at the center, you should keep the trimming scissors parallel to the lips and then follow the lip line as you snip. 

On the other hand, if you want an angular mustache, it’s better that you start working from the outer edges towards the center. As you reach the center from one side, start from the other side so that they meet at the perfect angle. 

Use your right hand to trim on the left side and your left hand to trim on the right side. This will help you achieve the same angle on both sides of the mustache.

4. Correct the length

Now that you’ve trimmed the extra hairs, decide upon the desired length of your mustache hairs. Use the fine-toothed comb to straighten the hair again so that you have an idea of how much to snip. 

Remember that it’s always better to be cautious when trimming than to go overboard. You can trim more, but you won’t get those snipped hairs back. Well, not for a while anyway. 

Use the scissors to get a clean line at the top of your mustache. If there are any overgrown hairs, trim them to their proper length. 

You will find that it’s much easier to manage unruly hairs when you’re using scissors because you have the liberty of tackling each strand individually. 

A common trick is to cut the top at a 45-degree angle facing your lips so that they look fuller and shapely. 

One of the most important things that you should not forget about is to leave a strip of skin between the mustache and the nose. If your mustache appears to be overgrown nose hair, its attractiveness quotient will plummet.

5. Tackle the volume 

The thickness of the mustache varies from person to person, but you can manage the volume according to what you wish. The scissors are flexible and can snip off excess hairs one by one instead of trying to take off too much at once. 

Take your comb and straighten your mustache once again. Place the scissor at the point you want to trim the mustache. 

Snip off the portion that extends beyond the comb’s teeth. You can trim the hairs underlying the mustache and bring the bulk under control. 

If you have thicker and overgrown hair towards the end of your mustache, you can pull it taut and start snipping the hairs located underneath.

It’s a common problem for bearded men that the hair strands of the mustache blend into the beard. If that is the case for you, you need to separate out the mustache hairs first with the help of your hand and then go in with the scissors.

trim mustache with scissors

6. Clean it up

It might take you a while to end up with a mustache that has just the right length and volume you were looking for, but be patient because the result will be worth your effort. Using scissors can slow you down, but it will also ensure that you do not make any glaring errors. 

Once you feel that you have done enough and there are no more adjustments to make, you should comb the mustache one more time. 

This will help you locate any hairs that you have missed when snipping. If you find any such strand, trim it to the appropriate length. Clean up the stray and loose hairs from around your mouth and face. 

7. The Final Touches

Keeping your mustache healthy is important. If you want to go the extra mile, apply beard oil to your newly trimmed mustache to give it some nourishment and moisture. If you want to style it, you can then apply some glorious beard wax. 

For the perfect trim, you should focus on keeping the mustache tight on the lips and then adjusting the length of the sides depending on the style you want. For example, if you want a proper handlebar, you must spare enough length on either side.

The Type Of Scissors You Should Trim Your Mustache With

Being careful about the kind of scissors you use for trimming your mustache will give you many benefits. The type of scissors you choose depends on certain factors like:

1. Length of the blade

Trimming scissors come in different lengths, and you should try out a few in order to gauge what will work best for you. Usually, mustache scissors have shorter blades because that allows for better precision when trimming.

2. Length of the scissors

In a salon, you will see barbers using scissors that measure anywhere between 5.5 inches and 7 inches. However, that’s not a great choice when you’re trimming your mustache at home. Ideally, you should go for mustache scissors that measure between 4 and 5 inches.

3. Material

Most mustache scissors are made with stainless steel. However, you should be careful because there are different grades of stainless steel. 

Since you will be using the scissors on your face, they should be made with high-quality steel to minimize the risk of irritation. 

The best mustache scissors are usually either made of Japanese or German stainless steel. With Japanese steel scissors, you will generally get a curved cutting edge.

On the other hand, German steel offers a beveled cutting edge that works well on mustache hair. However, it’s not as precise as its Japanese counterpart.

4. Grip

You do not want to mess up your mustache at any cost, which is why you should opt for scissors that offer a very good grip. You should be able to keep your hands steady when you’re trimming. 

Make sure that you invest in scissors that are comfortable to hold for long periods of time. Many facial hair scissors have in-built finger rests and big openings so that you can place your hand perfectly.

Additional Mustache Grooming Tips

The following tips will help you stay on top of your mustache game at all times. The mustache becomes the focal point of your face, and you should go all out when making yourself a grooming routine for it.

1. The beard and mustache are separate beasts

If you want to sport both a beard and a mustache, then you must make a point to distinguish between them when grooming. They are separate beasts and should be treated individually.

You should trim and maintain both of them during every session. It’s common to mistake mustache hair with beard hair, which is why combing is important. You will be able to locate the roots and cut accordingly.

This is less of a problem when the mustache isn’t a prominent feature of your facial hairstyle. For example, with a goatee, it isn’t that big a deal if you treat the mustache and beard as a single entity. 

But with a Van Dyke for example, you’ll want to nurture each component individually to get the best result. 

2. Tweezers may be worthwhile

While scissors will do most of the work for you, adding tweezers into the mix can give you even more flexibility. 

You can tweeze out the annoying stray hairs that reappear every time you trim. However, if you have sensitive skin that is irritated by tweezing, it’s better to skip it.

3. Keep it clean and moisturized

Do not miss out on weekly mustache oiling and shampooing sessions. If you’re someone who prefers to use wax to style their mustache, this tip is especially applicable to you. 

Product-buildup in your mustache will have adverse effects and is very unhygienic. Moreover, you want a soft and manageable mustache. Keeping the hair strands malnourished will lead to coarseness.

4. Combing should become second-nature

Combing your mustache should be an everyday activity. Don’t wait for your next trimming session in order to comb your ‘stache. Integrate it into your routine just like brushing your teeth. 


Trimming your mustache with scissors is definitely not the toughest thing on the planet. In fact, once you get the hang of it, you might never want to switch to an electric trimmer for this purpose ever again. 

It might seem a bit of an ordeal the first time you try it, but you will soon get used to the routine. 

Trimming your mustache with scissors is a grooming necessity and you shouldn’t go more than two weeks without snipping off the extra strands and reviewing its shape.