Does Manscaped's new nose hair trimmer get the job done?
The Weed Whacker is nothing to sneeze at, reports our brave writer.
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A frustrating fact of life is that as one ages, one tends to lose hair from on top of the head but gain it in places one would rather not have it. I'm in my late 40s and I've been mostly bald since my 30s. And I'm OK with that. But I'm not thrilled by the progress that hair has made in my nose and in and around my ears in the last half-decade.
Some background: I don't shave my face a lot, especially during the pandemic, but I wear my hair short (kind of a soft buzz) and am diligent about hygiene. I've reviewed products from Manscaped, including the company's Lawn Mower, a body hair trimmer specifically marketed for keeping your business below the belt, um, best in show. It’s garnered some attention from "Shark Tank" and ads on Instagram. I liked that trimmer but ultimately decided that I personally don't really need it.
I agreed to evaluate The Weed Whacker, however, because it claims to solve a problem that, sadly, I actually have.
What Is Manscaped’s The Weed Whacker?
The Weed Whacker, a new product from the brand Manscaped, is a waterproof rechargeable electric trimmer for ear and nose hair.
The device is compact and light (about 5.5 inches long and about 2.6 ounces), fits well in my hand, and is easy to operate and maneuver. Its visually appealing design features a matte black finish and smooth lines. The power button, which is flush with the device's surface, turns on and off with just the right amount of thumb pressure and has a satisfying tactile response.
The stainless steel trimmer tip, which kind of looks like the intake of a jet engine or maybe one of those sandworms from the Dune reboot trailer, houses a rotary blade that Manscaped promises won't hurt your skin.
The design aesthetics closely match other Manscaped products, which include the aforementioned groin hair trimmer, nail-grooming kits, and skincare lotions, all with "clever" names. The Weed Whacker looks like The Lawn Mower's little bro.
What comes with The Weed Whacker?
My test unit included a thin white fabric sack with drawstrings, a small cleaning brush, a USB cord, and a USB charger brick that looks a lot like an iPhone charger but is slightly smaller and is black instead of white.
Until I tested the Manscaped Lawn Mower last year, I'd never seen personal care products powered by USB before. What I like about this is you can ditch all the different charging bricks and just carry one USB travel charger for everything—phone, tablet, smartwatch, wireless headphones, and now nose trimmer—such as this one from Anker, which I never, ever travel without.
How much does The Weed Whacker cost?
Manscaped's pricing structure is a bit weird. As with its other products, Manscaped discounts the device if you buy it as part of a package and/or you agree to sign up for the company's blade-replenishment subscription. (This business model, while fiscally sound for the seller, always makes me go, "hmm. Do I really need to get a new blade, which costs half as much as the trimmer itself, beeteedub, every three months?")
Anyway, here’s the breakdown:
The Weed Whacker retails for $39.99 on Manscaped.com with no further commitment. But you get a $10 discount—$29.99 for the device—if you sign up for the “Peak Hygiene Plan,” which costs you $14.99 every three months for a fresh blade.
The Performance Package costs $119.99, or $109.99 with Peak Hygiene Plan subscription, and includes The Weed Whacker, the aforementioned Lawn Mower for your boys down there, a bottle each of Crop Preserver and Crop Reviver (lotions and potions for your delicate bits—eye roll), a travel bag called The Shed, Manscaped boxers, and a Magic Mat, which is a disposable mat that looks like an actual newspaper. (Don't get me started about this ... The fact that the company makes and sells mock newsprint—"Dual purpose – entertaining yet practical," Manscaped says—to capture our unwanted body hair because we apparently no longer read actual newspapers makes me irrationally angry but I know I can't change the world ... I told you not to get me started.) It's worth noting that if you opt for the Peak Hygiene Plan with this package, you get a new blade for both trimmers for the same $14.99 every three months.
Manscaped products are also sold on Amazon, with no subscription plan. You can get The Weed Whacker for $34.99.
How does The Weed Whacker work?
The instructions say to spend about a minute trimming each nostril and ear. However, the first time I tested it I spent almost five minutes trimming my nose hairs. I blame this on both operator error and significant overgrowth (I can't remember the last time I actually trimmed my nose hairs).
I asked my wife to inspect my nostrils with a flashlight (she gets my vote for Wife of the Year, duh) and she alerted me to a few spots I'd missed. So once I knew where to aim, The Weed Wacker took care of those stray hairs easily.
The trimmer is very quiet but when it hits hair, it makes a soft, crackling noise. So I soon learned that when I heard that sound, I knew it was whacking those weeds.
I cleaned the trimmer (more on that below) and moved on to my ears. I guided the cylindrical blade gently into my ears, taking care to not push too hard or too far inside as per the instructions. I gently ran the blade head along the inside of my ear canal, swiped around the outside, along the edges of my cartilage, and then around my ear lobes, where, embarrassingly, most of the unwanted fuzz grows. I heard that satisfying crackling sound that told me that the "weeds" were whacked, fuggedaboutit.
But upon closer inspection, I noticed that the Weed Whacker had missed a few stray short hairs on my lobes and couldn't seem to snip them no matter how precisely I aimed the blade head. So I waited a few days and tried again, but the Weed Whacker still struggled with these shorter hairs.
Cleaning The Weed Whacker
The trimmer is waterproof, which means you can use it in the shower. It also means that cleaning it is easy.
I ran the device under the faucet, then twisted and removed the blade head, and rinsed that out as well. It also comes with one of those tiny brushes, similar to the one you might get with a beard and mustache trimmer. I prefer using a soft-bristle toothbrush to sweep away hairs from my shaving and trimming devices. Having said that, the included brushlet is fine. I then shook off the excess water, gave it a wipe with a paper towel, and reassembled it.
How Is The Weed Whacker's battery life?
Manscaped promises you up to 90 minutes of power, which is pretty accurate, according to my let-it-run-till-the-battery-dies test. If you groom your ears and nose a couple of times a week, you won't need to recharge for quite a while.
However, make sure you bring the charging cable with you when you travel even if you think the device is fully juiced. And here is why: I just brought the Weed Whacker with me on a road trip. When I unpacked my stuff in my hotel room, I heard a faint buzzing coming from my toiletry bag. The Weed Whacker's power button had accidentally activated in transit and the battery was nearly drained. If I had to guess, my shaving gel canister must have collided with the button. Careful packing might prevent this, but perhaps a lock button (separate from the power button) would be great, too.
Should you get The Weed Whacker?
If grooming extraneous hair is important to you, you will like The Weed Whacker. It is well-made, waterproof, and easy to use. However, it costs more than many other ear- and nose-hair trimmers on the market, some of which are more versatile (for example, many also trim eyebrows and sideburns—The Weed Whacker does not).
Then again, most of those cheaper trimmers aren't waterproof and many of them use regular alkaline batteries, which may or may not be drawbacks, depending on your preferences and priorities. If budget is your biggest concern when it comes to trimming the hairs in your nose and ears, you'll get the job done with either tweezers (#ouchnothanks) or a $15 pen-style trimmer powered by a AA battery.
That said, if you already own and love The Lawn Mower, you'll like The Weed Whacker (which can be charged using the same cradle, FYI). But if you don't yet have any of Manscaped's products but are curious to try them, then buying one of its package deals—especially The Performance Package, which is a fantastic value for what you get—is worth a shot.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.