When it comes to home grooming, clippers are a versatile and essential tool that should be on your radar. Whether you're looking to maintain a short, neat haircut or just want to keep your facial hair in check, understanding the basics of hair clippers, combs, clipper guards, and basic techniques can make a world of difference in achieving the look you want.
But what if you’re brand new to the home-haircutting game? Well, that’s what we’re here for! We’ve created this comprehensive guide to the world of clippers for beginners like you. We’ll break down the essential components of clipper usage, so you’ll be on your way to becoming a grooming pro in no time!
Hair clippers are electric or battery-powered devices designed for trimming hair efficiently. They come with various attachments and settings that allow you to achieve different hair lengths and styles. Your typical clippers will consist of two main parts: the housing unit and the cutting blades. The housing unit contains the motor and power source, while the cutting blades are what shear the hair. Here’s a closer look at the two main types (corded and cordless):
- Corded Clippers: These clippers need to be plugged into an electrical outlet while in use. They’re generally more powerful and work well for extended grooming sessions.
- Cordless Clippers: Cordless clippers are powered by rechargeable batteries, offering greater mobility and convenience. They’re ideal for on-the-go grooming but also work great for home grooming purposes.
Clipper Attachments and Accessories
Clipper sets often come with a variety of attachments and accessories to help you achieve different hair lengths and styles. Here are some of the most common ones:
- Combs: These are essential attachments that determine the length of hair to be cut. They come in a variety of sizes, typically indicated by numbers, and each number corresponds to a specific length in inches or millimeters.
- Clipper Guards: Clipper guards (also known as guard combs) are similar to regular combs but designed to snap onto the clipper's blades securely. These guards ensure an even cut by maintaining a consistent distance between the blades and your scalp or skin.
Choosing the Right Comb or Guard
Now that we've covered the basics, let's dive deeper into the art of using combs and clipper guards effectively. Selecting the correct comb or guard is crucial to achieving the haircut length you want. Here's a general guideline to help you choose the right one:
- Short Styles (Buzz Cut): Use a #1 or #2 comb for a very short cut, leaving the hair at 1/8 inch or 1/4 inch, respectively.
- Medium Length Styles: Go for a #3 to #6 comb for a more moderate length, ranging from 3/8 inch to 3/4 inch.
- Longer Styles: If you prefer longer hair, use a #7 or #8 comb, leaving the hair at 7/8 inch or 1 inch, respectively.
Maintenance and Cleaning
Proper maintenance of combs and clipper guards is essential to ensure they perform well. After each use, remove them from the clipper and clean off any hair/debris. You can use a small brush to do this. You should also regularly lubricate the clipper blades to keep them running smoothly.
Technique Tip: Clippers Over Fingers
The clippers over fingers technique is a valuable skill to have, even if you’re just starting out. It allows for precision and control, especially when working on specific areas like the sideburns, neckline, or around the ears. Here's a step-by-step guide to mastering this technique:
- Prepare Your Clippers: Attach the desired comb or guard to your clippers based on the length you want to achieve.
- Wash and Dry Your Hair: Start with clean, dry hair to ensure a smooth and even cut.
- Section Your Hair: Divide your hair into manageable sections, securing them with hair clips or ties if necessary.
- Start with the Sides: Begin with the sides of your head. Hold the clippers in your dominant hand and use your non-dominant hand to guide the clippers over your fingers. Place your index and middle fingers flat against your scalp to create a barrier, allowing the clippers to glide smoothly and maintain a consistent length.
- Work Your Way Up: Gradually move upwards, maintaining the same technique. Make sure you’re cutting against the direction of hair growth for an even finish.
- Blend and Taper: Blend the sides and back into the top. Use shorter combs or guards as you move closer to the top of your head to create a gradual taper.
- Check for Symmetry: Regularly check in the mirror to ensure both sides are symmetrical and the length is even.
- Detail Work: For precise detailing around the ears, neckline, and sideburns, remove the comb or guard and use the clippers without any attachment. Be cautious and use light, controlled strokes to avoid cutting too much hair.
Hair clippers are versatile tools that can help you maintain your hair and facial hair from the comfort of your home. Understanding the different types of clippers, combs, and clipper guards, as well as mastering the clippers over fingers technique, empowers you to take control of your grooming routine. With practice and patience, you'll be able to achieve the perfect haircut every time. So, pick up your clippers and start experimenting to discover the look you like the best!
And when you’re ready to make your first clipper purchase, check out The Cut Buddy. You can shop Cut Buddy products today to find the best beginner-friendly home-grooming tools that will elevate your look to the next level. Learn more about how our clippers compare to other popular brands in a previous post where we answer the question Who Has The Best Hair Clipper? We're here to show you how the Cut Buddy Clippers measure up to those from our competitors.