Do Scissors Sharpen Themselves? Hack and Tips

The self-sharpening scissor is a common—and controversial—tool in any sewing kit. But do they really work, and how do you know if your scissors are self-sharpening? 

If you’re confused about this seemingly magical device, read on to find out more about what makes these scissors special.

Do Scissors Sharpen Themselves?

Scissors are not self-sharpening, but they can be sharpened by a professional. Whether you take your scissors to a human or machine for sharpening depends on the type of scissors you own and how often they need sharpening.

Scissors can also be sharpened with a human hand. If you sharpen your own scissors, it’s important to use care when doing so to ensure that the blade does not suffer any damage.

What Are Self-Sharpening Scissors?

Self-sharpening scissors have a special mechanism that allows them to sharpen themselves. This mechanism usually consists of a grinding wheel, which is often made of tungsten carbide (which is used in drill bits and saw blades). The grinding wheel is usually at the pivot point of the scissors, where it can grind away any dull edges on the blade as you use them.

Because this process takes place automatically, you don’t need to manually sharpen your scissors: they’ll do it themselves.

How Do I Know if My Scissors Are Self-Sharpening?

If your scissors do not have a convex blade, they are not self-sharpening. To find out if yours are, look at the back of their blades and see if there is an engraved circle with two dots on either side of it. If there is, then congratulations. Your scissors are self-sharpening and will require little maintenance.

If yours do not have this marking and they still seem to be sharp enough after cutting paper or fabric many times, check the pivot screw (the screw holding the two blades together). 

If it’s loose at all but doesn’t move around when you wiggle it in place, tighten that screw with whatever tool you need to tighten screws: pliers or a Philips head screwdriver. You shouldn’t need any tools for this step — just put your hand over both blades and lift them up by turning them toward each other until they click into place again.

Hack and Tips:

What Do Self-Sharpening Scissors Look Like?

The first thing you need to know about self-sharpening scissors is that they have a tiny sharpening mechanism built into the handle. The mechanism usually consists of either a ceramic or diamond-coated wheel, which is hidden inside the handle and activated by a button on the outside.

The wheel can be made from dozens of different materials, including ceramic and diamond (which are actually two types of minerals).

Some manufacturers add tiny grooves in their handles to help keep fingers clean while using them. These grooves don’t actually do anything though—they’re just decorative. If you want something functional you’ll need to look at other features like how many times per day your blades get dulled down over time due to friction against other surfaces and this will vary based on how much cutting material they come into contact with.

Can Scissors Re-Sharpen Over Time?

Scissors can be sharpened by a professional or the user themselves. A professional sharpening service is usually less expensive than you think, but the quality of their work will vary depending on where you go. If you’re confident in your ability to sharpen your own scissors (and have some spare time on your hands), give it a try.

If you don’t have access to an industrial-strength sharpener, there are a few options that might do the trick:

  • Use a whetstone to re-sharpen them over time with the use of water and oil as lubricants.
  • Use sandpaper wrapped around something like a block of wood.

Buying Guide:

Can You Sharpen Scissors at Home?

You can sharpen scissors at home, but it takes a lot of practice. There are several ways you can do this:

  • A whetstone or sharpening stone is a flat stone that’s used to grind down sharp edges on knives and other things. If you want to try this method, look for one that has two sides—one side is rough; the other side is smooth. The idea is to rub the knife along the rough side until the blade becomes sharp enough to cut through hair, then rub it across the smooth side so that there aren’t any nicks in it.
  • Knife sharpeners come in many shapes and sizes, including electric devices as well as handheld ones designed specifically for use with kitchen utensils like scissors and knives. These generally have two different sides—one coarse side for removing nicks from blades (think about how much easier it would be if all your kitchen knives were already super-sharp!), and one fine side for finishing off their edges once they’ve been restored with their original sharpness.

How Much Does it Cost to Get Scissors Sharpened Professionally?

How much does it cost to get scissors sharpened professionally? It depends on whether you’re talking about a $1 pair of basic household scissors or a more expensive pair of kitchen shears. 

The average cost of professional sharpening is somewhere between $3 and $20 per pair, but expect to pay less than that for most standard household scissors. Professionals may charge higher rates for custom work and for kitchen shears made from harder metals, such as stainless steel or titanium.


If you’re wondering if your scissors are self-sharpening, there are some simple ways to tell. First, take a look at the blades. Self-sharpening scissors have serrations on the top of each blade that look like teeth. These serrations help keep the blades sharp by creating a cutting surface that is both sharp and durable. 

Second, check to see if there is any type of pivot point or rivet near where the blades meet together—this would indicate an internal mechanism used for sharpening purposes rather than simply being made out of one piece of metal or plastic material as traditional scissors tend to be constructed with today (but don’t worry if they do!).

Finally, check out how much it costs when buying new scissors versus having them professionally sharpened by experts who know what they’re doing.