Hair clippers are personal grooming devices that are used to cut, trim or shave hair. They are composed of sharp blades and longer handles that are either made of plastic or steel. There are two types of hair clippers: the electric models and the manual hair clippers. In this article, we take a look at the best clippers on the market.
A manual hair clipper, as the name implies, relies on sheer hand power to trim and cut hair. This device is still widely used in certain parts of the world, and is regarded as the best hair clippers for men in some countries. Numerous salons and barbers in India, for instance, still use it for giving shorter haircuts to the back and the sides of the head.
Manual hair clippers were invented by a Serbian inventor named Nikola Bizumic. Before the advent of the electrically powered varieties, these clippers were widely used by barbers to cut hair close and fast. The clipper picks up hair in locks to rapidly trim the hair. This type of haircut is typical in the military as well as among boys in schools were strict grooming conventions are in effect.
These days, there aren’t a lot of individual end users who would opt for the manual hair clipper over its electric counterpart. There are certain barbers, however, in Western countries who still use them for trimming. For many hairstylists, it’s still best to have a manual hair clipper for backup in case the electric clipper breaks down for some reason.
4 Best Hair Clippers for Home Use of 2017
There are many brands of professional hair clippers in the market that are producing good quality hair clippers. With so many varieties and models, you can easily find one that is suitable for your needs.
However, it can also be overwhelming to pick out one from so many choices. Following are some of the best hair clippers for both professional and personal use. If you are a beginner at cutting your own hair, you also want something easy-to-use. Speaking of easy-to-use, let’s start with the Philips Norelco QC5580/40 Hair Clipper Pro.
If you are new to hair clipping want to cut your own hair, the Philips Norelco QC5580 is your best option. The Philips Norelco QC5580 is the most beginner friendly, do-it-yourself hair clipper. It comes with a storage case, two hair combs, a head shave attachment, power cord, and a cleaning brush. You can set the length anywhere from 0 mm to 15 mm. The cordless feature is a huge plus when you’re trying to get your hair just right. Luckily, it holds a charge for quite some time. The fact that it isn’t super expensive means it pays for itself after about 4 uses when you factor the cost of a decent haircut at about 20 bucks.
What sets it apart from other hair clippers is the unique, 180-degree rotating head design—which makes cutting your hair simple! You can get to those hard-to-reach spots without much effort. It’s also cordless,and especially light, which eliminates any arm discomfort during a haircut.
It uses a lithium ion battery that enables 1 hour of hair clipping on a 1-hour charge. The Philips Norelco QC5580 is also a great hair clipper for travel, as it does not need a ton of attachments, takes up little space, and comes with a zipper case. Another thing worth noting is that it’s fully washable, which makes cleaning afterwards extra easy. It also has self-sharpening blades made of stainless steel. If you like to shave your head bald, to get to the lowest “0 mm” setting you have to put on the head shave attachment. (You might also want to check out our balding clippers review if you intend to shave your head bald).
So what are the downsides? The Philips Norelco QC5580 is flimsier with flimsy attachments compared to other sturdier and made-to-last hair clippers on this list. And since it’s cordless, it supplies less power.
Extra Info: Be careful when turning the head of the clipper sideways, the length setting works the same way, only it’s positioned a little lower. You risk cutting your hair too short. Double check the length setting after changing the position of the head. Keep this in mind, and you’ll be just fine. This is still one of the best home hair clippers out there.
- 180-degree rotating head
- Fully washable
- Comes with a zipper pouch
- Long-lasting lithium ion battery
- Self-sharpening blades
- Two-year warranty
- Head shave attachment
- Not as sturdy
- Won’t last decades
- Lacks the power of corded clippers
The Oster Fast Feed is a supreme quality hair clipper and a rock solid choice for doing home haircuts. The Oster Fast Feed is a quiet-running, yet powerfu,l pivot motor hair clipper indented for home use. Oster is renowned for quality products, and this is exactly what the Oster Fast Feeds are: quality hair clippers. The Oster Fast Feed comes with: 4 guide combs (1/2”, 3/8”, ¼” and blending), a blade guard, cleaning brush, lubricating oil and an 8 feet power cord.
The fast feed is exactly what it sounds like: being able to handle high volumes of cutting at a fairly quick pace. No more uncut patches or little sprigs of hair sticking up you have to make 3-4 passes on. This places the Oster Fast Feed in the semi-professional barber category of hair clippers, and it is definitely one of the best best clippers for men in this category. The feel of the clippers is rock solid, and the unit sort of hums instead of vibrates like some clippers do in this price tier.
It is very light, particularly for a corded hair clipper—a great feature for a do-it-yourself hair clipper. It also packs some serious power. This little machine has a 12 amp pivot motor and delivers twice more power than a similar magnetic motor clipper. It’s also soundless–you can barely hear it. Instead, you can actually hear the hairs being cut off. The blades can be adjusted with a lever and go from a number 1 to 000 in length—a useful feature for fading. In fact, this feature makes this clipper the best clippers for fades on our list!
The clipper also stays cool. It does not get hot after prolonged use. (This is important if you are a beginner, when haircuts usually take longer). The only thing it’s lacking are the extra accessories other home hair clippers ordinarily include. The Oster Fast Feed will last decades with minimum maintenance.
- Quiet and Light
- Blade adjustable with a lever
- Does not get hot after prolonged use
- Minimum maintenance
- Does not come with a whole lot of accessories (only four comb attachments)
- Does not come with a storage case
With its wide variety of accessories and attachments at a very low price, the Wahl Color Pro provides tremendous value. For those looking for the most bang for the buck, we recommend the Wahl Color Pro. It’s loaded with accessories. You get: 11 guide combs, an ear trim guide comb, an eyebrow trim guide comb, a neck brush, a cap, a sturdy storage case, blade oil, a cleaning brush, 2 hair clips , scissors, a pocket comb, a medium comb, flat top comb and a blade guard.
The Wahl Color Pro is a “family-oriented” hair clipper, and is the best Wahl clippers in this category. The guide combs come in different colors, so it is easier for everyone to remember their favorite hair length. It comes in a simple, sturdy plastic case. (Plastic cases are underrated). It packs a decent amount of power and has adjustable, self-sharpening high carbon steel blades.
But like every product, shares its deal of inadequacies. The quality is not on par with the other, moderately priced hair clippers; it’s quite heavy and bulky; and tends to get hot after 10 – 15 minutes of use. Still, it provides enormous value.
- Self-sharpening high-carbon steel blades
- Fair price
- Arguably best value hair clipper
- Comes with a large assortment of attachments and accessories (including a barber apron)
- Adjustable lever
- Plastic case
- Decent power
- Quality and performance not on par with the other clippers
- Gets hot quickly
Another great value hair clipper is the Andis Promotor. The Andis Promotor comes yet again with a ton of accessories and attachments, as well as a bonus trimmer.
Here are the contents of the kit: hair clipper, trimmer, 8 clipper attachments, 4 clipper safety combs, 4 trimmer combs, a tapered barber comb, a styling barber comb, stainless steel scissors, DVD instructions, a nice soft storage case, lubricating blade oil, a protective blade guard, a cleaning brush and a barber cape (that’s a lot of stuff). It also comes with a staggering 5-year warranty (that’s a good sign). With the sheer number of attachments, and the above average performance, the Andis Promotor a more than a decent hair clipper.
Both, the clipper and trimmer, are equipped with pivot motors–which means lots of power with no noise. They are also powerful enough to cut through wet hair. It requires little maintenance (does not need any internal oiling). The stainless steel blades are adjustable with a lever. This kit also comes with a nice carrying case, which organizes all the accessories.
The included trimmer is a welcome addition. You can use it to maintain crisp facial and neck hairlines. On the flip side, however, I’ve come across people reporting the clipper does not have as much power as advertised (meaning it could potentially snag hair). And that it gets hot after a while of use.
- Includes a bonus trimmer
- Strong Pivot motor
- Five-year warranty
- Low maintenance
- Adjustable stainless steel blades
- Comes with a sea of attachments
- Nice, soft carrying case
- Can get hot after a period of use
- Users report it can snag hair
3 Best Professional (Barber) Hair Clippers of 2017
Professional hair clippers should have the following attributes: Power, reliability, durability and top performance.
A professional barber needs powerful hair clippers because they provide cleaner cuts in less cutting strokes. They are time savers; this is important when you have a full barber shop and can’t afford to spend a lot of time on one client. Professional hair clippers also need to be reliable. They should last for a long time (a decade at least), stay consistent, and should also be durable. Hair clippers can fall on the ground from time to time. You want hair clippers that can take a punishment and brush it off. And last, they must perform well. Although the haircut quality largely depends on the barber’s skill, a percentage goes to the hair clippers.
That being said, let’s start with the most iconic professional hair clipper of the last few decades, the Oster Classic 76.
The Cadillac of hair clippers. You can’t go wrong with the Oster Classic 76. The Oster Classic 76 is an incredibly powerful, universal motor-drive hair clipper. It is perhaps the most famous professional barber clipper in the US–and it’s not surprising–it mows through the thickest hair with ease and has proven itself time and time again. After the first pass with this baby, you can tell from the effortlessness of how it chomps through even the thickest hair that you have stepped up to top quality clippers.
The Oster Classic 76 comes with a cleaning brush, lubricating oil, blade guard, clipper grease and a 9 feet power cord. It has a detachable cryogen-x blade system. You can easily just snap on and off different size blades. You can also use guide combs instead of different blades as a cheaper alternative–but investing in various sized blades should be a priority (particularly if you run a barber shop) as they perform better. There are 13 different blade sizes you can buy and go for around $20 each. A sound investment.
The Oster Classic 76 housing is made of valox material making it virtually unbreakable. It won’t get hot after use (it even has an air cooling system). Every part of this clipper is replaceable and if properly maintained, will last you a lifetime. Quality.
When you buy quality clippers such as these, you want to do proper maintenance, as well as attach the blades properly.
But since no product is perfect, even the Oster Classic 76 has some minor flaws. It is quite loud (enormous power comes at a price) and is also larger and heavier than most hair clippers. That being said, it’s still a bulletproof choice for barbers. While some even use it to cut their hair at home, it remains the best hair clippers for barbers around.
With the proper care, these hair clippers will outlast that car in your driveway, even if it is a Cadillac.
- Immensely powerful
- Detachable blade system
- Extremely durable and reliable
- Lasts forever if maintained
- Every part is replaceable
- Does not get hot after a period of use
- Made in the USA
- Large and heavy
If you want a cordless professional hair clipper, the Andis Professional Ceramic Hair Clipper (Andis BGR+), should be on your shortlist. Without a doubt, one of the best professional hair clippers available on the market today. The Andis Professional Ceramic Hair Clipper is a cordless–yet-powerful–universal motor, detachable blade hair clipper. It comes with seven attachment combs, clipper oil, charging unit, battery pack, a CeramicEdge #000 blade and a heavy-duty storage case. The Andis Professional Ceramic Hair Clipper is for those who are not into corded hair clippers. It lasts for 1 hour on a 1-hour charge. (The battery can be charged separately).
For a cordless clipper, it’s immensely powerful; and for a powerful clipper amazingly quiet, and smaller than you would expect. Definitely the best cordless hair clippers on our list.
It requires less maintenance than similar hair clippers. It also features ceramic edge blades, which stay sharp five times longer and remain 70% cooler to the touch compared to conventional steel blades. However, it does have a higher price tag.
- Detachable blade system
- Gigantic power
- Storage case
- Resistant housing
- Requires little maintenance
- Ceramic edge blades
The Andis Master is very precise hair clipper, best for outlining and fading. The Andis Master is an excellent hair clipper for all-around outlining and fading, and probably the best hair cutting clippers in general. Unlike the previous two, the Andis Master does not have a detachable blade system, but rather the “standard” adjustable blade with a lever.
The thing about the ‘Master’ is that you truly need to be a master hair cutter. If you’re spending 35-45 minutes in front of the mirror trying to cut your own or someone else’s hair you probably want to pass on these because they can get pretty hot.
The Master comes with blade oil. The aluminum housing can take a pounding–it’s unbreakable. It has a surprisingly quiet powerful magnetic motor. Can trim with utmost precision. It’s also not very expensive for a barber clipper. It does, however, come with a flaw. The aluminum housing can get extremely hot—don’t use it if you are just starting out. While not really suitable for beginners, these are one of the best clippers for barbers.
As a side note: if they are very loud out of the box, tighten the screw on the right side of the unit until the sound becomes a faint hum.
- Blade adjustable with a lever
- Excellent for fading and outlining
- Very precise
- Can get raging hot pretty quickly
Hair Clippers Buying Guidelines: The Do’s and Don’ts
When shopping for manual hair clippers, you want to consider models that come with a variety of comb attachments so you can use the device for various hair lengths. Choose clippers with blade guards to protect the blades from rust and keep them sharp. If you’re going to open your own barber shop, however, you might want to go for clippers that are part of a whole professional hairstyling kit so you don’t have to buy other items such as capes, combs and cleaning brushes separately. Also, what type of hair cut are you going for?
Choosing the best one is a matter of choice, and it is important to go for something that suits your needs. There are many choices available in the market and a number of reputed brands so it is not difficult to find one that is perfect for you.
What to Look for When Choosing the Best Clippers for You
Ask yourself a question: to give myself (or family member, friend) the best haircut, what key things should I be considering? Factors affecting the type of a hair clipper you should choose are :
If you are cutting your hair at home, you are probably doing it to save money. Luckily, hair clippers for home use are inexpensive. You don’t need professional hair clippers as you won’t be cutting hair multiple times a day. Professional hair clippers are also generally bulkier, heavier and more expensive. But if you feel like buying hairdressers hair clippers, go ahead by all means. They have their perks as well. But most should benefit more from using regular home hair clippers.
The next thing you want to consider is weight. You want something that is light and maneuverable. Low weight and maneuverability come into play when you cut hard-to-reach areas. (Like the upper-left side of your head, assuming you are right-handed). Light hair clippers also put less strain on your wrist. Since (presumably) you are a beginner at cutting your own hair, your haircuts will take quite a bit of time. You will be going through the same spots over and over, which can be stressful on your wrist–and leads us to the next point.
You want something that has power. Why does power matter when cutting your hair? Less cutting strokes. Powerful hair clippers cut more hairs in one pass. Powerful hair clippers also won’t snag hair.
Features like cordlessness, the ability to be washed under water, extra accessories, noisiness, how hot they get after a while of use–are of secondary importance. The main things you should be looking at when buying hair clippers for home use are lightness, power, and price.