The Best Hair & Beard Clippers To Use At Home
It may come as no surprise that we are strong advocates for letting the professionals take care of your hair and beard needs. However, we also appreciate that there are times when making it into the barbershop may not be possible.
Unsurprisingly, many of us reached for the clippers when bound by lockdowns a few years back (with mixed results) and for some this has meant an increased level of confidence in home-based follicular maintenance.
We do, of course, recommend sitting in the barber’s chair for any intricate styles or if you’re looking to achieve a new look, but if you want to keep our fine work in check between visits then we can certainly recommend the best kit to do so.
So, if you are thinking of investing in your domestic tonsorial setup then these are the products that we feel are worth parting with your hard-earned cash for.
Philips One Blade
We can’t lie, when we first saw this one-size-fits-all trimmer we thought it could be a jack of all trades, master of none sort of affair. However, for the price point we were actually pleasantly surprised.
Look, you won’t be achieving a buttery fade with one of these bad boys anytime soon, and they wouldn’t be robust enough for use in the salon, but they do a lot for between thirty and fifty quid depending on the model.
Designed primarily for beards, they’re a great option for those who spot a shorter beard and want to maintain a consistent length (the comb guard offers lengths up to 5mm). They also do a good job at edging up with the bare blade and are perfect for achieving the designer stubble look.
We wouldn’t recommend these for long beards or head hair due to the power and blade size, there are better options below if this is what you’re after. Philips do claim that it’s also adept at trimming body hair but this is beyond our remit, we’d probably suggest having a spare blade available if you’re attending to both north and south - so to speak - in one sitting.
Wahl Aqua Blade
Wahl is arguably the go-to clipper brand in our barbershops as their performance and build quality are second to none.
As well as their professional level gear, Wahl offer a wide range of cutting equipment for home use. This tends to be cheaper in price as is it isn’t designed to withstand hours of daily use, not a problem for your weekly home trims.
One of the flagship offerings within this range is the excellent Wahl Aqua Blade. We were surprised at how sharp you could get the edges when the guard was removed and how easily it glided through even thick hair without any painful tugging.
Bonus points for it not having a pesky cord to get it the way mid shearing and the fact that it is suitable for wet and dry use; somehow it can even be rinsed out under the tap like a wet razor. For all its benefits, however, we’d still recommend using it only on the beard as it feels a little low on power to clear head hair smoothly and consistently.
Wahl Magic Clip Cordless
Sticking with Wahl, we can’t sing the praises of the Magic Clip Cordless highly enough. It’s been an in-shop favourite for many a year, and for good reason.
Firstly, a single charge will last a full day of trimming lids, so imagine how long it’ll last at home, you’ll be going weeks between charges. Plus, less chance of running out of power in the middle of a cut; because nobody wants to be heading to work with half a freshly trimmed lid.
Secondly, it’s a great all-rounder. It’s designed for cutting head hair but we use it all the time for trimming beards too. The high torque means that it’ll glide through pretty much any follicles like a hot knife through butter.
The downside, it’s not cheap. Most often retailing at a touch over a hundred quid there are cheaper options available, however, an army of loyal snippers would argue that it’s worth every penny.
Phillips Series 9000 Pro Precision
A few years back we were asked by Phillips to carry out some complimentary haircuts to trial a new hair clipper of theirs; the Series 9000 Pro Precision.
To be honest we were a little dubious. It claimed to have 400 length settings when us barbers are used to less than 5% of that. If it’s too complex for us professionals then how would your average domestic snipper manage? Actually, we had to eat humble pie.
Us professionals are so used to working with guards, flipping between them effortlessly as we know the lengths like the back of our hands. However, we forgot that for those who don’t work in the hair profession they can be bloody confusing.
This is because the guard numbers don’t correlate to any generally used parameter. For example, you may think that a one guard would be either one millimetre or one centimetre, right? Nope, it’s three millimetres. And a three guard in that case? It’s ten mil. You get the picture.
Well, this little beauty goes up in increments that make sense, are clearly visible on a screen and can be altered by a simple finger swipe. And yup, there’s more than double the number of length settings here than there are countries in the world.
If this feels a little OTT then fear not, for there is a built-in function which memorises your faves. The tech doesn’t stop there either, there’s also an automatic turbo function which kicks in to tackle thick hair. We’re hoping the next model will be able to transform into a vacuum cleaner and suck up the cuttings before making us a coffee.