The Ultimate Guide to Hair Clippers


    Hair clippers are handy devices to help you maintain your hair without needing to go to the barber every few weeks. Most hair clippers are designed to be extremely easy to use. This means you can maintain your hair and give yourself a cool cut without spending unreasonably at the barbers. 

    Hair clippers give you the flexibility of deciding the cut you want and allow you to trim your hair easily. Be sure to practice first because using a hair clipper requires a bit of practice. Still, purchase a clipper according to your skill level. You will learn quickly and soon be able to give yourself expensive-looking haircuts without spending a cent. 

    Things To Know Before Using Hair Clippers

    Barber tools on a peach surface.

    Before you start putting your hair clippers on your hair, ensure you know what you are doing. It is extremely important that you know the kind of haircut you want. Simple haircuts, like a buzzcut, can be achieved in multiple ways. Due to this, you must come up with a plan before you start cutting your hair.

    When cutting your hair, you want to be able to see what you are doing. A handheld mirror is an excellent way to keep track of your progress and ensure you are not cutting off too much. If your clipper has a self-cut feature, cutting the back of your head is even easier. If you plan on using mirrors, arm yourself with two when you start to work on the back of your head. 

    Having sufficient lighting is also very important when cutting your hair. Ensure that you have turned on every single light. Good lighting helps you see better, which allows you to be precise and accurate in your cutting. Comfort is also essential. If you are uncomfortable, you will likely end up cutting off a chunk you weren’t supposed to.

    It is imperative to take your time and start small. When you begin cutting your hair, ensure that you use the larger attachments that cut off small bits of hair. Gradually reduce the size of the attachment till your hair is exactly how you want it to be.

    When cutting your hair, you should make sure you are comfortable. Professionals suggest standing up when cutting your hair. It gives you freedom of movement; if needed, you can move close to the mirror to get a better look. 

    How To Use Hair Clippers

    Man cutting his hair using clippers.

    Knowing how to use a clipper is extremely important because it uses sharp blades and, if misused, can be dangerous. The first step is to wash and condition your hair. Clean hair is much easier to cut as compared to dirty hair. If your hair is greasy, it will stick together and get caught in the clippers. To avoid this, wash your hair and ensure it is completely dry before you start cutting it. Since wet hair lies differently than dry hair, having dry and clean hair is extremely important. 

    Before you start cutting, ensure that you are seated comfortably. Have a mirror and a bowl of water ready with you. Ideally, you should cut your hair by the sink as water and a mirror is readily available there. Once you are prepared, section your hair as you typically wear it.

    The next step is to start cutting. Set your hair clippers to the correct guard and start cutting. Note that it is always best to start with a lower number than you intend. You should start from the sides and back of your hair and then move to the front. 

    Using the blade’s edge, start trimming from the bottom of the sides and then work your way up. Tilt the clipper blade at an angle, as it helps create an even fade that matches the rest of your hair. Do this on both sides before moving to the back of your head. Ensure that each side is even as you do so. 

    Once the sides are complete, move to the back of your hair and work from the bottom all the way to the top. Always go slowly when you are working with the back of your head. If you are new to trimming your hair, you can hold a mirror to the back of your head to check your progress. Ensure that you use the same guard length for the sides and back of your hair. 

    Once you are done, you should go over the lower half of your hair with your clippers using a lower guard, which helps create a fade. Ensure that you lift your hair when you reach your earlobes and temples. 

    You can also use scissors and a comb to help achieve an even look. Do not use household scissors, as they are not sharp enough to cut your hair. Instead, purchase proper hair shears to trim your hair. The best way to go about using a scissor is to use your fingers or a comb to raise your hair from the top of your head and trim it. You must work slowly and carefully to avoid any mishaps. 

    Once you are done, comb your hair and start grabbing sections to see if they are the same length. If they are not, use scissors to even them out. The last step is to cut your sideburns. Begin from the bottom and slowly work your way to the top.

    Knowing the Difference

    Multiple barber tools and attachments.

    Before you set out to buy a device to trim your hair, it is essential to know the difference between them. There are three different kinds to choose from. Once you have clarified your purpose, you will know which one to buy. Here are the three types and what they do.

    Hair Clippers

    Hair clippers are designed to cut from a distance. They do not get close to your skin and are mainly used for long hair or a beard. Clippers have guide combs, which allow you to choose the length you want to cut your hair or beard, which is extremely useful.


    Trimmers are primarily designed to trim beards and create stubble. They usually have compact bodies and narrow blades that give you a lot more control over your task. Due to their form factor, they are much better for putting the finishing touches and fine-tuning hairstyles. You can also use them to create styling. 


    Shavers are designed to give you a smooth and precise shave that you won’t be able to achieve with either clippers or beard trimmers. They are used for beards and hair. 

    What To Consider When Purchasing Hair Clippers

    man holding a cordless hair clipper. 

    When purchasing hair clippers, you must buy ones that fit your needs best. There are many different kinds and brands available, which can make picking out the perfect one confusing. Still, if you consider the factors mentioned below, you won’t have any problem picking out the perfect one. 

    Corded vs. Cordless

    Hair trimmers usually come in corded and cordless varieties. Depending on your use, you may want to choose either of the two. Both have pros and cons, and in the end, it all depends on whether or not you intend to use them in one place or travel with them.

    Corded clippers are excellent if you want something cheap and powerful. Since these trimmers are connected to a power source, they are much more powerful. You can also use them for extended periods. Cordless clippers are excellent if you do not travel often and will most likely use your clippers at home. If you choose to buy a corded hair clipper, ensure that it has a long cable length, as a short one will significantly restrict your movement, making it difficult to cut your hair. 

    Pros  Cons
    They are more powerful compared to cordless. You need to have a power source nearby.
    You can use them for extended periods. If the cable is short, you have limited movement.
    They are cheap. They are slightly heavier due to the cable. 

    Cordless clippers are much more flexible because they do not need to be plugged in, and you can use them anywhere you want. These are excellent for those who travel often and want to keep hair clippers on hand if they need to spruce up their hair. 

    Pay attention to the battery type if you purchase rechargeable clippers. Ni-MH batteries take much longer to charge and often lose their charge over time. Li-Ion batteries are much better because they charge faster and have a much longer service life, which makes them perfect for travel.

    Pros  Cons
    They are rechargeable and can be used without a power source. They have short battery lives, and you may need to charge them if you use them for extended periods. 
    Allows flexibility of movement.  Cordless clippers lose power over time.
    You can use them anywhere because a power source does not limit you. They are more expensive than corded clippers.
    They are much lighter.

    Blade Material

    The blade material plays a huge role in the end result. A high-quality and sharp blade allows you a much more accurate cut. Due to this reason, the clippers you choose must have a blade made of high-quality material. The better the blade is, the longer it will remain sharp. 

    There are many different kinds of blades that clippers use. 

    Blade Type Benefits
    Titanium Blades Titanium blades are the highest quality blades you can find. They are 3x harder than stainless steel and are basically indestructible. These blades are self-sharpening and resistant to rust.
    Ceramic Blades Ceramic blades are fragile blades that do not retain their sharpness for very long. They are resistant to heat and rust, meaning you can wash them without them getting corroded. 
    Steel Blades Steel blades are much more durable than ceramic blades and are easy to maintain. They are one of the cheaper blades and are not resistant to water.
    Stainless Steel Blades Stainless steel blades are one of the most common materials used for clipper blades. They are rust-proof and do not remain sharp for very long.
    Japanese Steel Blades Japanese steel blades have high strength and sharpness, which enables them to allow clean, smooth, and sharp cuts. They are washable. 

    Guide Combs

    Guide combs allow you to shape your cut in whichever way you want. They help turn your hair clippers into a multifunctional device that you can use for various purposes. Using guide combs, you can even trim your beards. Guide combs in multiple types and sizes. The most common types of guide combs include fixed combs, adjustable combs, and special attachments.

    Type of Comb Use
    Fixed Combs These combs are designed to cut your hair at a specific length. You will need to purchase multiple combs in order to get a variety of lengths. These are usually found on cheaper clippers.
    Adjustable Combs Adjustable combs do not need to be replaced; you only need to set the desired length of the cut. These combs allow for precise adjustments.
    Special attachments Special attachments include combs meant for shaving, contouring, etc.

    Knowing which comb size suits you is critical because you do not want to accidentally cut your hair too short. Most companies follow the standard length for guide combs.

    Size In mm
    1 3mm
    2 6mm
    3 10mm
    4 13mm
    5 16mm
    6 19mm
    7 22mm
    8 25mm

    Additional Accessories

    In addition to their primary function, many clippers also come with additional accessories and features that make them much more functional. These accessories and features include self-sharpening blades, battery status indicators, quick charge, and an LED display.

    Self-sharpening blades are extremely useful on clippers because they help the blade stay sharp for longer. Most self-sharpening blades are made using titanium or stainless steel and are much more expensive than standard blades.

    Battery status indicators are an excellent addition to any clipper because they allow you to estimate how much battery you have left. This feature is especially useful for clippers that can’t be used when they are being charged. Ensure you purchase a clipper that you can use when they are charging if you intend on using your clipper for extended periods. 

    An LED display is another important feature because it provides all the vital information like battery status, cut length setting, etc. 


    The more expensive a clipper is, the better it will be because expensive clippers use high-quality materials and blades. They also tend to come with a bunch of accessories. Cheaper clippers are comparatively less feature packed and do not last very long. 

    Clippers can range between $40 and $90 and sometimes even cost more. If you purchase a clipper around the $40 price range, you will get a corded hair clipper with a short battery life. It will probably be made using cheap materials too.

    If you decide to splurge and get a hair clipper costing over $90, you will get top of the professional line hair clippers. They will most likely have a titanium blade, a metal body, and a powerful motor. 

    The Motor

    The power of your motor plays a massive part in how easily you can achieve your desired haircut. Clippers with more powerful motors allow you to harness the full potential of the blades and make the device extremely easy to use. Cheaper motors tend to burn out quickly, reducing the longevity of the clippers. Due to this, you must purchase a trimmer that has a powerful motor. 


    Man holding a shaver.

    When purchasing a comb, it is important that you choose from a well known brand. Brands such as Wahl, Oster and Remington use high quality materials and the latest technology to ensure that you have the best experience. 


    Wahl hair clippers are some of the easiest to use, making them perfect to use at home. They are made using high-quality material that does not bend and keeps its shape, which makes them highly durable and long-lasting. They are also very cost-effective as they are cheaper than other brands and are still made using high-quality materials. Some popular models from the brand include the Wahl Elite Pro High-Performance Hair Clipper Kit and the Wahl Color Pro Plus Haircutting Kit.


    Oster hair clippers are perfect for those who want precise cutting because the blades on these devices are incredibly sharp. Such blades allow you to maintain fades and buzz cuts very easily. Oster hair clippers are also lightweight, which makes them easy to hold and use. Unlike other clippers, your hands won’t feel tired after extended use. Some popular models from the brand include the Oster Fast Feed Adjustable Pivot Motor Clipper and the Oster Classic 76 Universal Hair Clippers.


    Remington hair clippers are designed to be portable and easy to hold. They are compact devices with an ergonomic construction, allowing you to use them easily and take them with you if needed. Remington offers both corded and cordless hair trimmers. The corded models have a thick and long cord, which allows you to move around and use the trimmer comfortably. Some of the most popular models from the brand include the Remington HC4250 Shortcut Pro Self-Haircut Kit and the Remington Virtually Indestructible Haircut and Beard Trimmer.


    1. How do I choose the best hair clippers?

    When shopping for clippers, you should decide whether you want a corded or a cordless clipper. Then take note of the included accessories, the motor it uses, the kind of blade it has, and how expensive it is. These factors can help you choose the best hair clippers on the market.

    2. Is it better to cut hair when wet or dry?

    Professionals recommend that you should trim your hair when they are damp. Since this is when the natural texture is most visible, you will be able to cut much better. 

    3. Are corded clippers better than cordless ones?

    Corded clippers are much more durable but limit your movement because you need to attach the clipper to a power source. On the other hand, a cordless clipper allows you the freedom to move but has a short battery life, meaning you need to recharge it often. 


    Hair clippers are an important part of men’s grooming kits because they are extremely useful. They help you save both, time and money. After all, you do not need to visit the barber to get your hair looking professional. They are designed to help you make your hair look the best without stepping a foot outside. However, this is only possible if you have the right clippers. To choose the best clipper for your need, focus on the motor, its power source, additional accessories, and blade time. Focusing on these factors will help you purchase a hair clipper that will serve you well for years.

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