It seems like every man you see nowadays has a fade. But there’s a reason for that, and a reason why the fade is still persevering since becoming popular in the 50’s. It’s because it looks damn good. Those sharp lines and angles show people you mean business.
Originating from the military, as well a black owned barbers, this cut is perfect for any kind of event. From birthday parties to networking, a fade is the little black dress of haircuts.
But the problem with fades is that they never last long. It’s like the second you leave the barbers you can hear it growing again.
Inevitably it means you have to go back and get another cut and then go back and get another one then go back and get another and you’re starting to see the problem right? It’s time consuming.
Even if the cut is quick, when have you ever gone to the barbers and there’s been no queue? It’s as rare as a man who’s never had a fade.
Time aside, it can also be expensive. Those trips add up. At some point you have to ask yourself, is it really worth it to get someone to use a pair of clippers, that you could easily buy, to shave off a little from the sides?
So why not buy some clippers? It’ll save you time, money, and you’ll be able to give yourself a fresh trim whenever you want. But you’ve got to make sure you choose the right ones.
You don’t want to invest all that money into a pair of clippers that couldn’t even cut into cake. You’ve got to factor in the type of blades, settings, price, battery, and so many other factors, that we come back around to the issue of time.
Luckily we’ve made things a lot easier for you so you don’t have to worry about research. Below are 5 of the best clippers for a fade, already in the market. From blades to battery, we’ve assessed it all so you don’t have to.
Wahl Magic Clip Cordless Clipper
We’re starting off the list with Wahl, one of the leading men’s grooming brands. As well as just clippers they’re known for their home electronics.
Since they’re so large, they’ve put a lot of money into their research and development department to figure out what you need and how to make the best pair of clippers.
The Magic clippers are cordless which means you don’t have to worry about getting tangled as you shave, or staying near a socket. This also means they’re perfect for being on the go. Portable and lightweight, it only weighs about 290g.
At full battery power, they have an operational time of 90 minutes which is way longer than it takes for the average trim, so you won’t have to worry about working quickly and can take your time to get the perfect fade.
In order to achieve that smooth effect that comes with a good fade, the combs use staggered tooth crunch blade technology.
Not a single hair will escape the cut because of the inbuilt two tracks, each one of a different length to give a nice layered style.
The charging time is 120 minutes for a full battery and uses 120-240 volts of electricity. Perhaps that might be one of the few drawbacks of the Wahl magic clippers.
It takes longer to charge than the amount of battery time it has. However the most important thing is the cut, and you cannot argue with the result of these clippers.
- 90 minutes battery life
- Staggered tooth crunch blade technology
- Long charge time
BaBylissPro Barberology MetalFX Series Clippers
BaByliss made their name with women’s haircare, creating some of the best hair dryers out there. Then they realized, hey, hair is hair. If they could style it so well, then why not cut it? Thus the BaBylissPro Barberology MetalFX Series Clippers were born.
Actually, they’re not technically their first pair of clippers, but we would argue that they are their best.
Cordless comes a s standard with this clipper. It has a battery life of up to 2 hours with a charge time of 3, unfortunately it’s a pattern with clippers that it takes them longer to charge compared to their usage.
But the lithium coated blades will give you one of the most precise, seamless fades you’ll ever have in your life. As well as just the clippers you also get 8 attachments.
It’s fantastic for hair of all textures. Weighing in at 0.7lbs means this isn’t a very lightweight or pocket-friendly clipper, however there’s a reason for the weight and once you find out you’ll forgive it’s heaviness.
Along with the battery this clipper is equipped with a high torque engine that gives off not only incredible power, but also a nice quiet hum.
The last thing you want, early in the morning when you use them, is a screaming motor in your face like other clippers. Oh, and did we mention that the engine it uses is the same kind as a ferrari.
Yeah, that’s right. These are the ferrari of clippers.
- Lithium blades, good for all hair types
- Seamless finish
- High torque engine
- 8 Attachments
- Very expensive
- Heavy, not pocket friendly
ANDIS Us Pro Lithium Cordless Clipper
ANDIS is a company that specializes in hair clippers and other hair tools, both for animals and people. Having been in the industry of clippers since 1922, means they are old enough to know how to make a damn good pair of clippers.
They’re extra popular with people who have afro textured hair because of their lightweight, yet very strong, carbon steel blades. As with most clippers nowadays, these are cordless.
The ANDIS Us Pro Lithium Cordless Clipper is actually one of the few clippers with an excellent usage to charge time ratio.
It takes 90 minutes or less for them to reach full charge whereas they have a usage time of 2hrs. Weighing in at less than 10oz also means these clippers are light and portable.
In terms of the actual cut, these clippers benefit from being able to adjust them to 0 gapped. The amount of gap you have between the blades determines the difference between your fade and hairline, and how it blends.
Professional barbers use clippers that are almost always 0 gapped because of how precise they are. Use caution with this feature if you’re new to cutting your own hair, because it requires a very steady hand.
- Lightweight and portable
- 0 gap adjustable
- Excellent battery to charge time ratio
- Great for afro hair
- Costly, but not as expensive as BaByliss clippers
Oster 97-60 Heavy Duty Barbering Rotary Motor Clipper
Coming from humble roots, operating out of a tiny garage in Wisconsin, Oster is now a worldwide powerhouse. Established in 1924, Oster is a favourite of barbers all over the world.
In fact, it was Oster that completely turned the design of clippers on their head by adding a motor. Every pair of clippers that came afterwards, including the ones on this list, owe it all to Oster.
So when they came out with the Oster 97-60 Heavy Duty Barbering Rotary Motor Clippers, people were flocking to buy them. These clippers are designed to last.
Built for use in a barber shop, the parts are removable to make for an easy clean. The rotary motor is nice and quiet, giving a powerful and smooth runtime of 70 minutes.
Oster makes sure to take care of their customers, including loads of useful accessories in the purchase. Included is lubricating oil, a blade guard, clipper grease, cleaning brush, and comb attachments.
Since these aren’t the most lightweight clippers, weighing in at around 1lb, they’ve made sure to create a comfortable grip with an attached hand ring to hold. So if you do drop the clippers, they won’t go far.
- Heavy duty
- Includes lubricating oil, blade guard, clipper grease,
- Cleaning brush, and comb attachments
- Runtime of 70 minutes
- Hand ring
- Comfortable grip
- Professional cut
Fade King Cordless Hair Clippers
We end our list with the most affordable pair of clippers out of the lot. But don’t be mistaken, affordable doesn’t mean the quality of your cut will be less up to standard than one any of these other clippers can give.
The Fade King Cordless Hair Clippers have been dubbed the best budget clippers to buy.
As well as them being cordless, you also have the option of making them corded if the situation calls for it. These clippers are incredibly multifunctional.
They combine the function of being hair clippers with being a beard trimmer too, so you can use them for either. The LED display and ergonomic handle are built in for efficiency and ease of use.
Accessories include a cape, cleaning brush, and a complete range of guard attachments for hair of different lengths.
The blades are incredibly safe to use and because the teeth are close together, this pair of clippers can be used on kids and toddlers without fear of hurting them. All that aside, the thing that makes the Fade King stand out is it’s beast of a battery.
It may not be a ferrari engine, but the premium 2500mAh lithium battery can hold up 5 hours of usage time. That’s right, 5 whole hours, and it only requires a charge time of 3hrs to reach that.
That makes it one of the most efficient usage to charge ratios.
They’re comfortable to hold and perfect for first time cutters, or even barbers.
- Cordless or corded
- LED display
- Ergonomic, comfortable handle
- 5 hours usage, 3 hours charge
- Good for kids and toddlers
- Cape, guards, and cleaning brush included
- Hair trimmer and beard combined
- Made completely from metal means it’s heavy
- Buyers Guide
Buying a pair of clippers is more personal and tricky than you’d expect. There are so many things to consider, like hair type, blades, fade type and much more.
Below in our buyers guide we give you handy tips to look out for when purchasing the right pair of clippers.
Buying a pair of clippers is more personal and tricky than you’d expect. There are so many things to consider, like hair type, blades, fade type and much more. Below in our buyers guide we give you handy tips to look out for when purchasing the right pair of clippers.
The type and sharpness of the blade on your clippers will determine how fresh your trim actually looks. No one wants blunt blades that make it look like Freddy Krueger gave you a nightmare of a haircut.
Generally the best kind of blades to use are made of carbon steel. They stay sharper for much longer and give a more precise cut. Carbon steel blades cut all types of hair.
If you’re cutting your own hair, guide combs are a must. Most hair clippers will come with guide combs. These toothy things are used to show you the length of the hair that will be left on your head, not how much is taken off like some people think.
The current guide for guide combs was actually developed by Wahl, one of the names on our list, and is as follows:
So the numbers will leave the corresponding lengths.
Corded vs Cordless
All the clippers on our list are cordless, and some of them even have the option to be adapted into corded. The benefits of cordless are that it can be used anywhere and you don’t have to worry about getting tangled in a cord if you’re cutting your own hair.
If you’re someone who’s always travelling, then cordless would be the way to go because of their portability. And you don’t have to worry about plug adapters.
However, bear in mind that the battery doesn’t last forever, and they do require charging. Unlike corded clippers that don’t require charging and work continuously.
These are particularly good for barbers who are continuously cutting hair, or just impatient people who don’t have the time to wait for charging.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long should a hair clipper/ trimmer last?
Hair clippers are designed to last. Most of them anyway. How long they last will depend on several factors, the most important one being maintenance.
If you don’t regularly clean your clipper and oil the blades when needed this can cause it to get clogged up and the blades to become blunt and will significantly reduce how long the trimmer will last.
Most times you don’t have to worry about sharpening your blades as they come with an auto sharpening feature, which adds to the lifespan of the clipper. Be sure to double check that this feature is installed before buying any clippers.
As well as increasing the lifespan of your clipper, regular maintenance also prevents uneven and ragged cuts. In the long run, this will give you a much smoother fade.
Are clipper blades sharp enough to cut skin?
Listen, a blade is a blade, and blades are sharp. They should always be used carefully. However with clippers, the blades are set into it and aligned in such a way that when you use it for a haircut it shouldn’t cut the skin.
That’s if it’s used correctly. Now if you come at someone with a pair of clippers looking to do damage that’s another story. Please do not use clippers as a weapon.
Also dropping clippers can knock the blades out of alignment which can result in them nicking the skin. So make sure to be careful whenever you use clippers and keep them out of reach from children.
Are accessories universal?
Most clippers come with accessories like combs which are attached to the blade, and guides, depending on the type of clippers. These are included to help you give the best possible trim and they’re especially handy as a guide if you’re a beginner to cutting hair.
However the reason most clippers include these accessories is because they are designed specifically for that clipper.
They are designed to attach to it, and only it, to discourage you from using competitors’ accessories. It’s not the most ethical thing in the world but it’s understandable.
Luckily, there are some accessories that are universal. These usually come without a clipper and are just a pack of universal accessories.
Is wet hair or dry hair better for clippers?
Given that when you go for a traditional haircut with scissors they almost always wet your hair, it’s understandable to think that it works for clippers too. But actually, it’s near impossible to cut wet hair with clippers.
That’s because your hair will be matted when wet, making it very difficult to cut. For the best results either towel, or hair dry your hair before cutting.
Just never use clippers when it’s dripping wet. Aside from your trim being at stake, so are the clipper blades. When in contact with water, your blades will start to rust. And once your blades are rusted, it’s game over.
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