Almost every man on the planet grows some semblance of facial hair. And the maintenance options are pretty straightforward—shave it off or grow and maintain. The latter has become the more popular option and for good reason: a well-shaped beard can enhance a weak chin and jawline, hide unrealized weight gain or simply reduce the pain and frustration of wet-shaving. Having the right beard trimmer can drastically improve your day-to-day beard grooming needs.
Reviewed has been recommending beard trimmers, for several years now. In the most recent update to this guide, after weeks of research and testing 10 of the most popular beard trimmers on the market, we found that the Wahl Lithium Ion+ Stainless Steel Trimmer With Grooming Kit(available at Amazon for $86.99) is still the best option, for most people. Its overall performance and supportive accessories truly separated it almost entirely from the pack.
For those on a budget, we also recommend the Hatteker Hair and Beard Trimmer (available at Amazon). It has solid power, can be used in the shower and it has all the supporting accessories to maintain your beard and even the hair on your head!
Here are the best beard trimmers we tested ranked, in order:
Wahl Lithium Ion+ Stainless Steel Trimmer With Grooming Kit
Hatteker Hair & Beard Trimmer
Wahl Aqua Blade
Andis Slimline Pro Li T-Blade Trimmer
Conair Beard & Mustache Trimmer
Braun Beard Trimmer BT7240
Philips Norelco MG3750
Remington Hc6550 Vacuum Haircut Kit
Philips Norelco BT7215
Wahl Lithium Ion+ Stainless Steel Grooming Kit
The Wahl Lithium Ion+ Stainless Steel Trimmer With Grooming Kit’s sleek stainless steel design and balanced weight distribution gave me the confidence that this tool was made with sound consideration towards comfort, durability, and performance. Its blade's sharpness and power do not disappoint. During testing, it proved capable of trimming close on all beard types, effortlessly creating clean, sharp beard lines. The sharpness of its steel blades and its power also makes the free-hand shaping of bigger beards a cinch.
Most trimmers are not designed with an adjustable handle for creating blended beard lengths. So, guide combs are extremely important in satisfying this need. The Lithium Ion+ Stainless Steel trimmer is a cordless beard trimmer that comes with 12 guide combs and an additional ten-position adjustable guard that addresses all desired beard lengths and fading requirements. Its remaining accessories—a rotary ear and nose hair trimmer head, brow detailer, and shaver head—are much welcomed, surprisingly capable extras.
This is a trimmer that can handle the most challenging beards and with the build quality to withstand a few bumps along the way. Its accessories were well thought out for the guy who may not have the time to visit his favorite barber as often as he’d like. And, its handy pouch keeps all of its accessories in one place for easy travel. It is, however, not designed to be used in the shower.
Hatteker is a new company on the market. And, I couldn’t have been more impressed with their Hair and Beard Trimmer’s performance. Its power is on par with the majority of the cordless clippers in this guide.
This clipper comes with three detachable heads: one for hair, one for beard, and a precision head with a built-in adjustable dial for managing shorter lengths and fading. The heads swap out easily and deliver the sharpness needed for close-cut beards (or hair) with the ability to create detailed lines as well. Best of all, the Hatteker is water-resistant, so it can be used in or out of the shower. The clipper’s ergonomic design makes it feel very comfortable in the hand. And, although encased in hard plastic and not stainless steel like our top pick, it still feels strong and durable. Its hair trimmer head is adjustable making this clipper a great option for everyone with a beard and even a starter clipper for new barbers and hairstylists alike.
The Hatteker comes with six guide combs, along with an adjustable comb guard designed to work with its precision trimmer head. The only concern I have with these accessories is the hard (acrylic-like) material of the three lowest level guide combs (3mm, 4-6mm, 7-9mm.) From my experience, this material (as opposed to its more flexible plastic versions) can sometimes break easily. And, once a few comb teeth go missing it can become a challenge to use while searching/waiting for a replacement.
My name is Craig Whitely, professionally known as Craig the Barber. I have been a professional barber for almost 15 years and have been practicing the trade since the age of 14.
My experience in the space of barbering has opened up opportunities to consult with Fortune 500 Skincare and Grooming brands, educate and train future beauty students and provide men’s grooming content for national magazines. I am the founder and CEO of my namesake and award-winning shaving and skincare line - Burke Avenue by Craig the Barber. For years, I have advocated for consumers in the men’s grooming space so I take great pride in doing so with Reviewed.
I put these beard trimmers to the test on four different guys with beards (including myself). Over the course of three weeks, each beard trimmer in this guide was tested on their ability to create clean lines (sharpness), their ability to remove hair quickly (power), and their durability (dropped ‘em.) If the trimmer in question was waterproof, it was used in the shower and also dropped into a full sink of water while on for three minutes. That was a pretty fun test with the added benefit of great barbershop conversation with my volunteers. Speaking of volunteers, in addition to using each trimmer on myself, I also tested them on three acquaintances, each of whom has a different facial hair type, ranging from straight to curly. This was important in order to deliver the most accurate review of each trimmers performance:
Robbie (early 20’s) - thick and straight (virtually no curl); full beard growth on three-quarters of his face with the remaining areas fairly sparse.
Francisco (late 30’s) - curly and fine (thin); full face beard growth with greater beard density on the chin and mustache.
Me (early 40’s) - thick and overly-curly; full beard growth capable. However, I sport a Van Dyke (mustache and chin hair).
Anthony - (late 60’s) - salt & pepper, thick combination beard-type (curly and straight). Full-face beard growth.
What You Should Know About Buying Beard Trimmers
Whether you’re growing facial hair or simply wanting to maintain your hairstyle in-between barber visits, a beard trimmer is a great tool to have handy in your grooming kit. There are, however, many options to choose from, including corded, cordless, waterproof, and vacuum trimmers. Knowing how you want to use your trimmer will be very helpful in your decision-making. Once you have that trimmer in mind, here are the four most important boxes to check before making a long-term commitment.
Blade Sharpness: The sharper the blades, the more versatile your trimmer will be for creating beard lines, shaping long beards, cleaning up necklines and evening sideburns. These are just a few. So the bottom line is making sure that your new trimmer can effectively create a close beard trim (level "zero"). If it can also do this on all hair types it’s a stand-out winner.
Power: The more power the more effective and efficient your job will be. Combine this with sharp blades and you have a trimmer that will deliver every time.
Out Of The Box Power - I know I cannot be the only guy on the planet who wants to immediately use a new gadget once you get it home. So, going with that understanding, I enjoyed testing each of the trimmer’s out-of-the-box power and then comparing it to how powerful it was with a full charge.
Accessories: Trimmers are generally the most popular purchases for men when it comes to grooming. But the more supportive the accessories the better options for maintaining your beard and even the hair on your head. An assortment of guide comb attachments allows for great versatility when blending and also maintaining specific lengths as well. The most helpful guide combs lengths are 1/16” - ⅝”. Additional accessories can include brow and precision detail trimmers, nose and ear trimmers, and even an electric shaver replacement head can help with the details that make your beard stand out.
How To Use A Beard Trimmer
To use a beard trimmer, simply turn it on and place the base of the blades onto the surface of the skin. Allow the blades to gently move across your face.
Whether you are starting from the neck-up or cheekbone-down the removal of hair should essentially be the same. Consider overlapping the last area trimmed to guarantee consistent beard length.
If you need to use your trimmers with guide combs as part of your grooming regime:
Always choose the highest setting comb guard first in an effort to achieve the desired length. This will prevent you from taking too much off at the outset. Adjust to the next lowest setting to go shorter until the desired length is achieved.
Start from the base of the neck and trim upwards (towards the chin), and go against the grain (opposite direction your beard hair grows).
Always overlap the last area trimmed to guarantee consistent beard length.
Once you have achieved the desired length, the final step is to make sure your mustache is neat and not hanging over your lip. Position the trimmer at the center of the mustache and start at the lip line, where the hair tends to “overhang”. Carefully continue to trim toward the outer edges of the mustache as you follow the outline of the top lip as a guide.
How To Maintain A Beard Trimmer
There are three super important steps to maintaining your beard trimmer:
Get the hair out: Although most of the brushes included with your trimmers are pretty flimsy, cleaning out all of the hair after each use will keep these brushes effective. Some trimmers are capable of being submerged in water. If this is the case, take advantage of this extra benefit. Just remember, a clean trimmer is a reliable trimmer.
Keep it oiled: Similar to the pistons in a car engine. If these blades work for long periods without being oiled they will become less effective. Consider oiling them after each use or following the manufacturer’s instructions. For me, it is easier to rule when I have problems with my trimmers if I consistently keep them oiled. This includes the waterproof trimmers that say otherwise.
Store in a dry place: Like all electrical devices, long-term exposure to moisture can pose a problem down the road with potential rust or other types of erosion. A dry place is pivotal in maintaining reliable trimmers.
Other Beard Trimmers We Tested
Wahl Aqua Blade Deluxe Trimmer
The Wahl Aqua Blade is the Wahl Lithium Ion+ Stainless Steel Trimmer’s cordless, waterproof counterpart. It comes equipped with 12 different guide combs to help maintain your beard.
During testing, I found the Aqua Blade was sharp, durable, comfortable in my hand, inside and outside of the shower. Along with its guide combs, this trimmer comes with three detachable heads: a nose/ear trimmer, one for trimming eyebrows, and an electric shaver. The electric shaver head is small, narrow and seemingly made for detailing and small area maintenance. This specific design could pose a potential concern for shavers with sensitive skin, as you’ll need to give larger shaving areas, like the neck, multiple passes to get a close shave.
The Andis Slimline Pro Li T-Blade Trimmer’s power is impressive and its blades’ sharpness delivered on all hair types during testing. Four guide combs are included with this trimmer, along with a charging stand. This is a classic barber trimmer designed to work on all the details a barber needs with the support of other tools at their disposal. For stand-alone and home use its limited accessories lean more towards the consumer who is more comfortable with working with less to get the job done.
Unfortunately, there were a few issues with the Slimline Pro that can’t be overlooked.
The trimmer’s sleek design places all of its machine parts in the top half of the trimmer making it feel quite top-heavy. And, while the trimmer looks like it’s made of chromed metal, it’s actually constructed using hard plastic. This makes durability a concern—especially since dropping a top-heavy trimmer will eventually result in damage to its blades.
This Conair Beard and Mustache Trimmer was the only corded model I tested for this guide. It’s very comfortable and balanced in the hand and its cutting power is solid. Conair includes two standard guide combs and one adjustable comb guard equipped with eight positions.
Unfortunately, Its blades are not sharp enough to deliver the detailing required for short beard lengths and curlier hair types.
The Braun Beard Trimmer BT7240 comes equipped with a built-in, ten-position adjustable dial, that allows for fading and managing shorter beard lengths. Equipped with two additional adjustable guide combs it has the basic tools needed to trim and maintain. It also comes with a detachable electric shaving head, an eyebrow trimmer, and a Gillette Fusion Five Proglide razor with two cartridges.
Unfortunately, the BT7240’s power and sharpness lacked the ability to handle tough jobs and different hair types. We also had some concerns about its build quality.
After using so many trimmers over the years as well as testing this selection of trimmers a bar has been set for what should feel and perform like a trimmer in this price point. From it’s lightweight feel, hard plastic casing, to its weak power representation, this trimmer had a lot to prove upon opening.
The Philips Norelco MG3750’s lightweight, rugged design and cutting power made it feel like a real workhorse. Its sharp blades can handle all beard types with ease as well as its detachable head attachments - ear/nose and a precision trimmer. Four standard guide combs (1mm, 5mm, 12mm and16mm) are equally as tough as the trimmer.
This is a great tool to have handy in a travel bag or, as your first trimmer. It’s tough, sharp, powerful, and cordless. What’s more, its attachments are easy to clean with water.
The only thing to be mindful of is that its rugged design could make it uncomfortable to hold, for some users. Not having good control over the trimmer could spell danger to a neatly coiffed beard.
A hair clipper system equipped to make post-grooming clean-up easy? Where do I sign up? The Remington Hc6550 Vacuum Haircut Kit comes equipped with 11 guide combs, including four slanted ones for trimming around the ears.
The Hc6550’s vacuum system is designed to catch beard hair as you cut it and works, surprisingly well, with all hair types.
The biggest drawback to this trimmer is that its girth makes it very difficult to get a comfortable hold on it. Additionally, the Hc6550’s blade is positioned behind its vacuum port. This, combined with its less than sharp blades makes it a challenge to detail your beard with it.
The Panasonic ER-SB40 is a good-looking, easy-to-use beard trimmer. It comes equipped with an adjustable dial that can position its blades to cut as low as 1/32 of an inch. for easy fading and short hair maintenance. The ER-SB40 comb guard sits comfortably on the trimmer’s head and, thanks to the trimmer’s length dial, is easily adjusted to accommodate a wide range of beard lengths.
Unfortunately, this trimmer lacks the power and blade sharpness to confidently detail neckline lines or clean up a mustache.
The Philips Norelco BT7215 comes equipped with a built-in vacuum to catch hair, a dial for adjusting the trimming length of its comb guard and sharp blades. It also comes with a secondary detailing head and two guards specifically designed to fit it.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to love as its built-in vacuum, designed to collect beard hair as you trim, is barely capable of doing its job.
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