Which Side Of Scissors Do You Sharpen? (Explained)

Sewing scissors are a must in any sewing kit, but they can get dull quickly.

As you use your scissors, you need to keep them sharp. Even sewing through a few layers of cotton can quickly dull your scissors.

Luckily the fix is simple. Restore the edge to your cutting tools, and you’ll be good to go, but which side of the blade should you sharpen?

Which Side Of Scissors Do You Sharpen?

When sharpening scissors, you do so on the side with a beveled edge.

The beveled side is the one that has been ground down to a sharp edge as the grinding process creates a curve along the edge of the blade. This curve is called an “edge angle,” giving scissors their cutting power.

There are three main ways to identify the beveled edge of a scissor:

  1. Look at the handle and the tip of the blade. If there is a slight curve in the metal, it is a beveled edge.
  2. Look at the two blades and determine if they meet at an angle greater than 90 degrees instead of just meeting at a corner.
  3. Take one blade and place it flat against something solid, such as a piece of paper or cardboard.
  4. Then, turn it so that you can see both edges at once without any interference from other objects in between them.
  5. If one side looks like it has been cut off or ground down slightly more than the other side, this indicates that you have a beveled edge on your pair of scissors.

Once you determine which side is the beveled one, you can sharpen your scissors. The best way to sharpen sewing scissors is to take them apart and sharpen each blade as you would sharpen a knife.

You can use a whetstone, an electric grinder, or sandpaper to sharpen your sewing scissors. When using these tools, it’s important to remember that you should never apply too much pressure when sharpening your blades.

They might become brittle and more susceptible to damage due to this.

If you’re looking for an easier way to sharpen sewing scissors without damaging them, consider using an angle guide for precision sharpening angles. You can also use a self-sharpening scissor, which allows you to run the scissor through a hole to sharpen both sides of its blades.

Do You Sharpen Both Sides of Scissors?

The cutting edge is the sharpened side of the scissors’ blade. However, you want to ensure that both blades’ cutting edges are sharpened when cutting paper or fabric.

If only one side is sharpened, that side will be duller than the other and tear through what you’re cutting instead of slicing through cleanly. You’ll be more likely to end up with jagged edges and holes in your projects, which can lead to frayed edges or even holes in whatever material you’re working with.

In addition, if one side of your blade is duller, this can cause uneven cuts and cause raggedy cuts instead of clean slices through paper or fabric.

Sharpening both blades of your scissors will help ensure that all cuts are smooth and even so that your projects look great.

Are the Sides of Scissors Significantly Different?

The sides of a pair of scissors are significantly different.

Both sides of the scissors have been designed with a specific purpose. Understanding how each side should be used to make the most out of your scissors is important.

The sharper edge of a pair of scissors is called the cutting edge. The cutting edge is used for cutting through material and is designed to be sharp enough to separate two objects with minimal effort.

The other side of the pair is called the blunt edge and is used for pushing or pulling materials apart without breaking them apart. The blunt edge can also push or pull objects together without breaking them apart, which may be advantageous when sewing materials together.

Why Is One Side of the Scissors Angled?

The blade of a scissor is angled because it helps the user achieve more precise cuts, which means they can make their cuts more quickly and get more done in less time.

The angle also helps control which part of the material gets cut. This is especially useful when cutting fabric or other materials with different thicknesses.

Finally, the angle makes it easier for anyone to make clean, straight cuts without worrying about being too perfect.

Why Is One Side of the Scissors Straight?

One side of the scissors is straight because it allows you to cut things straight.

A straight edge is necessary when cutting materials such as paper and fabric. The straight edge helps you cut straight lines, which you’d want to do with paper or fabric.

What Do the Different Shapes of Scissors Mean?

A pair of scissors can be identified by their shape alone. In the same way, the blades of various scissors are optimized for specific tasks.

Each size and shape of scissors is best for a different task:


You’ll find blunt-tip scissors in offices and schools. These scissors have a rounded point on one side and a flat edge on the other.

The blunt tip cuts paper and cardboard, while the flat edge allows you to trim fabric without snagging.

This is a good choice for kids because it doesn’t have a sharp point that could hurt them if they accidentally poked themselves or someone else with it.


Offset scissors are designed for precision cutting. They have blades that are usually longer than their handles and form an “offset” angle between them. 

This allows them to be used for intricate embroidery and other detailed sewing tasks.

They’re also great for cutting thick materials because they can get into tight spaces without getting stuck or bending the material being cut.


Right-handed people must use right-handed scissors. Right-handed scissors have been designed so that the right blade always faces up no matter how you hold them.

In other words, a right-handed person can see the cutting line clearly and, thanks to the cutting action of their right hand, can make a smooth cut along the entire length of the blades.


Left-hand scissors were designed to be used by left-handed people.

When using left-handed scissors, the top blade is always on the left so the user can easily see the cutting line, and the blades are squeezed together by the user’s hand.


Straight scissors were designed to have two blades that are rigid and parallel to one another.

Compared to other scissors, these are the simplest to learn how to use. The straight scissor is a staple in most households because of its versatility.


Curved scissors are great for cutting paper and fabrics like ribbons because they give you a better grip on your work.

They also have a pointed tip that makes them useful when cutting close to an edge or corner.


Embroidery scissors are designed specifically for cutting out fabric when making clothing or other items that require sewing together pieces of fabric.

Others are designed for cutting embroidery threads.

Embroidery threads are typically made out of nylon or cotton and come in a wide range of colors so that you can create designs on your clothing using different patterns or stitches.


Unlike traditional scissors, which require you to keep your hand flat on the fabric, duckbill scissors have a wide, flat blade and a slightly angled handle.

The paddle blade, also known as a duckbill blade, is designed to keep you from slicing through the fabric’s usable stitches.


Angled scissors have a blade that is angled down and to the front.

The curve is subtle, and the blade’s tip is almost level with the top of the handle. These are great for cutting in tight places, such as around a buttonhole or overhand knot.


Serrated scissors are a type of scissors that feature sharp, saw-like teeth on the edge.

Blades with serrations are much better at grabbing and holding onto material than straight blades. This eliminates the need to risk damaging your material by folding or pushing it.