Finding the best beard trimmer is no easy task. There about a dozen different manufacturers currently making trimmers, and each company offers several different models. How do you choose?
No problem – we’ve got you covered with a comprehensive list and reviews of the best trimmers on the market for personal grooming. Before you spend a dime on a new trimmer, make sure you read our vital tips to buying the best grooming tools possible.
Here is our list of the beard trimmers we believe are the absolute best on the market. If you take a look at the list, you might be surprised to see that “best” does not mean “most expensive.” There are a number of very good choices that are affordable on even the leanest budgets.
Best Beard Trimmer
Features to Consider in a Trimmer
When choosing the best beard trimmer, there are a lot of features to consider. Picking what features are most important to you is a highly personalized decision. We highlight some of the features here to help you make a buying decision.
Length Settings and Adjustment One of the more important features of a beard trimmer is its ability to adjust how close of a trim you get. Generally, the length settings are measured in millimeters from a very close 0.5mm out to 10mm or longer.
Some trimmers offer only a few levels, while others offer many different lengths. Some of the better trimmers will offer 20+ settings.
If you want the stubble look, you want a trimmer that has a 0.5 mm setting.
Something to keep in mind is how are the adjustments made? Is there a dial for adjustments and how is it locked into place? You do not want the adjustment dial to move once you start using it. That could lead to a very uneven beard.
Cleanliness Keeping your beard neat is only part of the problem. You also have to keep the trimmer and your bathroom clean. When trimming your facial hair, cut whiskers go somewhere: your sink, the bathroom floor and into the tool itself.
A few trimmers use a vacuum system to suck cut hair into an internal basket that can be emptied when you are done trimming. These systems are relatively uncommon, but can be a really clean way of handling waste hair. Phillips Norelco is one of the pioneers on the vacuum systems.
You will also want the ability to clean the beard trimmer on a regular basis. Most of the best trimmers offer a way to wash the blades, but a few do not. Make sure you get a unit that will allow you to maintain it.
Blades Type Beard trimmers use blades to cut whiskers. Many units use a high-quality stainless steel that is corrosion resistant and will hold a sharp edge for many cuttings.
Some trimmers will use carbon steel blades. Carbon steel blades can be much sharper than stainless steel, which will give a cleaner cut with fewer pulls of the whiskers. The downside is they tend to corrode more quickly than stainless steel.
Some carbon steel blades are coated in titanium. Titanium is a metal that can be very sharp and corrosion resistant. However it is very expensive also. Some companies use thin coatings of titanium on carbon steel to get the best of both worlds.
Wet/Dry Operation All trimmers will allow you to use them with a dry face. However, the best beard trimmers will let you work while your face is wet. Many of them are safe to be completely immersed in water. This means you can trim your facial hair while in the shower if you want.
If you want full wet/dry operation, make sure you check the stats of the shaver closely.
Ease of Cleaning The ability to clean the trimmer blades and being able to do so easily are important for long term care of the unit. Some trimming tools have rinse channels built into the body that allow for the quick cleaning of the blades after each use.
Some units will allow the use of soaps or other solvents to ensure good hygiene.
Be careful when looking at beard trimmers as some will not allow you to rinse or wash them. If you buy one of these, you will be limited to brushing cut whiskers from the unit.
Cordless and Corded Operation The vast majority of good trimmers work cordlessly. Generally, only the low end beard trimmers will require the use of a cord to work. While they will still get the job done, they reduce your ability to move and certainly do not work in the shower.
Most trimmers will work on a built-in battery (see below for more information on battery types.) But the best beard trimmers will allow for the use of the cord with the battery. This means that even if the battery is dead you can still get a trim in. Some battery powered trimmers will not allow this, so carefully check when getting ready to buy.
Battery Type and Life Different rechargeable trimmers will use different kinds of batteries. Some units use nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) while others will use lithium ion (sometimes shown as ICR, IMR, or IFR batteries.)
Lithium ion batteries generally will hold a greater charge and for longer than NiMH batteries. For example, a similarly sized NiMH battery might have 30 minutes of run time, where a lithium ion might run for 50 minutes.
The downside is lithium ion batteries do tend to cost more money.
Travel/Dual Voltage If you do much traveling, you will want to pay close attention to what features your trimmer has that will make a difference to you. Two of the biggest are a lockout feature and the ability to operate on other voltages.
The lockout feature allows you to “lock” the trimmer so it is not accidentally turned on while packed. This will prevent you from arriving at your destination with a dead beard trimmer.
Running on dual voltage means you can use the trimmer around the world. In the US and other countries, the electricity is provided at 110 volts. In Europe and elsewhere, voltage is rated at 220. The ability to run either allows you to travel without concern about your unit not working, or being damaged by incompatible voltages.
Display Different trimmers will have different information to display. For basic units that only work on corded operation, there may be no display at all. For more advanced units, displays may show charging status, whisker length setting and if the blades need to be cleaned
Included Accessories Beard trimmers often come with accessories such as a special comb and travel pouch. Some may come with a cleaning fluid or oil to keep the blades in top shape.
Warranty A warranty from the manufacturer is important, especially considering how expensive some trimmers are. Manny warranties are for one to two years.
I have found that is a trimmer fails, it is immediately, not months after purchase. So buying from a quality retailer like Amazon.com is especially important. Amazon makes returns very easy and prevents you the hassle of having to go through the manufacturer.