Cut Baby Hair Before 1 Year: Can I Do It and Should I Do it?

By Lynn •  Updated: 04/17/23 •  9 min read
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Is your baby’s hair struggling to grow, looking uneven, suffering from cradle cap, or simply isn’t as thick as you’d hope it’d be? If so, you may be considering to cut baby hair before one year. But should you? In this article, we’ll explore the many facets of cutting baby hair, as well as when, and if, you should do so.

Why do you not cut a baby’s hair before age 1?

After all, why shouldn’t you cut your baby’s thick hair?

There are a few precautions and factors you’ll want to keep in mind before taking the plunge and cutting your baby’s hair before one year. 

One of those factors is whether or not your baby can sit up. In most cases, a baby that can’t sit up is not a proper candidate for having his or her haircut. This is simply because they cannot sit up until around 6 months. 

If this is true for your baby, then you should wait until your baby is able to confidently sit up on his or her own before you embark on baby’s first haircut. Doing so will lower the risk of injuries and mistakes during the process.

As for reasons one should cut baby hair, it is important to realize that cutting baby hair often takes place for a variety of reasons. Most of it has to do with the parents’ desires. For example, many of baby hair cut takes place due to cultural practices. Others occur because of the parent’s beliefs about what cutting hair will do for the child in the future. For example, some people believe that cutting a child’s curly hair will make their hair grow straight.

So, what are some of these beliefs about what cut baby hair before 1 year could do? 

Consider the following:

  • “My Baby’s Hair Will Grow Back Faster”: The idea that baby hair grows back faster if it is cut is indeed a myth. Though many believe that hair cuts cause hair to grow faster, the truth is that hair growth is often a result of genetics, nutrition and other factors not affected by the length, or cutting, of your little one’s hair. If anything, the hair will appear more even and may retain its length simply because the ends have been cut. But again, this does not affect overall hair growth from the root. 
  • “My Baby’s Hair Will Grow Back More Even”: You may be wondering if cutting your child’s hair will cause it to grow back in more even. Actually, cutting your child’s hair will cause it to grow back more even. Provided that you gave it an even cut to begin with. If, however, you notice bald or thin  patches even after having cut your baby’s hair evenly, you may wish to see a pediatrician to determine the cause. 
  • “My Baby’s Hair Will Become Thicker”: The idea that baby hair will grow back thicker if cut before a year is another misconception. Sure, cutting your child’s hair may make the hair appear healthier and more even, but this does not affect the overall thickness of your baby’s hair. Factors such as thickness and rate of growth are largely determined by genetics. Thus, cutting your childs’s hair on the surface will do very little to make their hair thicker. 
when to cut babys hair

Can I cut newborn hair?

While you could cut your newborn’s hair, it isn’t something that’s recommended. Your newborn, being fresh out of the womb, is subject to many things that could make him or her ill or uncomfortable.

To shave a newborn’s hair means to remove the covering that helps the baby self-regulate his or her heat. Babies’ heat is regulated through their heads, thus, a bald head could put a baby at risk for becoming too cold and developing an illness.

Moreover, newborns cannot properly sit up. Thus, newborns are not a good candidate for head shaving. 

If you feel you must cut your newborn’s hair for cultural reasons or for reasons outside of the scope that is discussed here, we strongly recommend you do so with another adult present to support the child. Also, that you do so in months that aren’t cold. Be sure to cover the baby’s head whenever possible with a hat to help the baby regulate their heat.

Again, there isn’t truly any great reason to shave your newborn’s hair as doing so can put them at risk. Consider waiting until at least 6 months to one year instead. 

Can I cut my 3 month old baby’s hair?

You could cut your 3 month old baby’s hair, but remember, there isn’t any real reason to. Also, recall that a 3 months old baby can’t really sit up. This will put the baby at risk during the haircut.

Instead, we’d recommend you wait until your baby is at least 6-12 months before attempting a haircut.

When to Cut Baby Hair

When should I cut my child’s hair for the first time?

Are you considering when to attempt baby’s first hair cut? We’d recommend considering your baby’s readiness level, as well as why you’d want to cut it in the first place.

Obviously, most children will require a haircut at some point to keep the child well-groomed and comfortable. Thus, if you notice hair poking in your child’s eyes or if you want your baby’s hair at a desired length, it may be time for a cut. 

A general rule of thumb is to wait, if you can, until your baby is at least one year of age before attempting the first cut. At this point, your baby is comfortably sitting up on his or her own and has more awareness of what is going on.

Still, there are things you’ll want to do ahead of time to ensure your baby is comfortable and safe before attempting the first cut. 

Why do we cut baby’s first hair?

Many cut their baby’s first hair for reasons that have to do with cultural practice, appearance and misconceptions revolving around the hair cut leading to thicker, fuller and longer hair. 

1 Year Old Haircut

How do I cut my 1 year old’s hair?

A baby hair cut will take time, patience and preparation.

Before attempting the cut, make sure you have a safe place to have your child sit. Have something to distract them, such as an interesting book, toy or television program. It can entertain your child while he or she is receiving his or her haircut.

If you are trimming the hair, start with scissors at the nape of the neck. Then begin to cut your child’s hair, with small snips and at an angle for easy blending. 

How to Cut a Baby’s Hair

How do I trim my baby’s hair?

Trimming your child’s hair will take time and patience. You’ll want to gather all supplies including whatever you are using to keep your little one distracted. Also a towel, comb, safe place for your child to sit, cloth covering and salon style scissors. 

Then, you may go ahead and attempt the cut. For instructions on how to go about cutting your baby’s hair, check out this video below.

Shaving baby hair

Can I shave my baby’s hair?

You can shave your baby’s hair, but remember, it likely won’t cause your baby’s hair to grow back any faster or thicker. You’ll also want to be sure to always cover your baby’s head once the cut is complete. Especially when he or she is out in the elements 

Lastly, if you plan to shave your baby’s head in the winter months, we’d recommend waiting until the weather has warmed up. This will prevent your baby from developing an unnecessary illness. Remember, babies regulate heat through their head. So removing surface hair will make this process more difficult for your little one. 

How do I shave my newborn’s hair?

We don’t recommend shaving your newborn’s hair. Doing so may make your newborn uncomfortable, lower his or her ability to regulate their body temperature and increase the risk for injury as your baby is not able to sit up or his or her own. 

It may also cause irritation to baby’s scalp.

baby's first haircut

Baby First Haircut Salon

Should I have my baby’s hair cut professionally for the first time?

Whether or not to have your child’s hair professionally cut for the first time is completely up to you. However, you may want to consider your child’s level of comfort.

Indeed, taking your child to a professional may be your best bet in terms of results and safety. But it also may make your child uncomfortable.

Related Read: Toddler Hair Growth Products

If, while in the styling chair, your baby begins to cry forcefully or seems highly uncomfortable, you may wish to perform the task at home.

To prevent a meltdown ahead of time, it may be good to:

  • prepare a snack
  • ensure that your baby isn’t already hungry before the appointment
  • pack toys and other distracting things
  • simply make sure your child is comfortable before continuing on with a professional cut

Cut Baby Hair Before 1 Year

So, should you cut baby hair before one year? It is possible, but it depends on the reason for which you want to do it. Not all reasons are justifiable for cutting baby hair under one year. There are many misconceptions surrounding the topic to begin with. We’d recommend you do your own research first. And ensure that you wait until your baby is one year old in order to safely trim or shave your little one’s hair without making them uncomfortable or putting them at risk.


Lynn is a freelance writer, a wife, and a mother of two beautiful kids. Lynn started Infant Empire with the aim of making parenting easier for fellow mums and dads. She believes the parenting tips provided here will be of great help to all parents.