What happens if you cut your hair in a ponytail?

If you've ever thought about cutting your own hair, you're not alone. Not only are hair salons expensive, but when you already have to pay for shampoo, conditioner, hairbrushes, straighteners and blow dryers for your home, it can really add up. And sometimes, all you need is a trim to keep your hair looking healthy and full. According to holistic hairstylist Roxie Jane Hunt, DIY haircuts are actually safe if you just want a slight tidy up or micro-trim (via Refinery29).

She says that her DIY haircut tip is great for those with layered haircuts that at are least shoulder-length, and in even better news, it works well on most hair textures. It involves combing damp hair into a tight ponytail at top of your head and grabbing your sharpest pair of scissors. Ideally, you should be using hairdresser quality scissors, as blunt scissors will just cause more split ends.

How to cut your own hair

Hunt's technique is simple and works best on layered hairstyles. Basically, you need to stand in front of the mirror, then squeeze the hair elastic, slowly pulling your ponytail straight up. Once three inches away from the ends, all you need to do it cut carefully focusing on the longest split hairs you can see. If you want to remove more than just split ends, you should be fine to cut straight across the top of your hand holding the ponytail up.

The key to this fool-proof method is only cutting a small amount of hair. If you want a few inches off, or a complete hairstyle change, cutting your own hair in a ponytail is not the way to go as it will leave it looking uneven and choppy. As celebrity hairstylist Juan Carlos Maciques warns (via Good Housekeeping), "When people attempt to trim their ends by pulling all the hair forward on both sides, this leaves... uneven ends and a gap in the center back of the hair."

So take caution with your DIY skills, and if you're not comfortable (or it feels too ambitious), see a pro.