Rarely, it seems, are you able to find a beard trimmer that is both good quality and inexpensive. Yet, that is exactly what the Remington MB200 trimmer is. The retail price on this cordless trimmer is amazingly low, yet it offers some very nice features typically associated with higher priced models.
That doesn’t mean that this it the perfect beard trimmer for everyone. Quite the opposite, in fact. However, it will fit the bill for a great many people simply because it can get the basics done without crushing your bank account. Read through my review and take a look at the drawbacks to this particular trimmer. There are some important things you need to know before buying.
Even though the MB200 is inexpensive, it should not be automatically dismissed from consideration as inferior. The truth is, it does have some very good things going for it. They include:
- titanium coated blades
- trimming lengths from stubble to 18 mm
- cordless operation
- low maintenance
Let’s take a closer look at some of these now.
The MB200 blades are titanium coated. They both self lubricate and self sharpen. Other than cleaning they are about as maintenance free as you could hope to have in a beard trimmer. Typically, lower cost grooming tools use carbon steel blades that require oiling lest they corrode and wear out early.
Sharp as any of the higher dollar units, the MB200 handles even coarse hair with ease. These blades will not pull like some inferior products.
There are nine trimming adjustment lengths from 1.5mm to 18mm. Other trimmers, such as the Phillips Milano series offer more adjustment levels (19 for that beard trimmer), but many people are satisfied with the nine settings offered on this Remington.
A click wheel is used to make the beard length adjustments in the MB200. It is an easy-to-use device, and you can quickly make adjustments as needed. Some trimmers have complicated procedures to make adjustments, but this does not. It is easy.
When you adjust the zoom wheel to the right trimming length, the wheel will click into place for each length. This will help prevent the lengths from changing while you are trimming. You definitely don’t want it going too short on you in the middle of a trim.
This Remington model can serve as a stubble trimmer also. Crank the zoom wheel down to the first setting (1.5mm) and it will work perfectly for this. I got a stubble look I really liked, and think this Remington is pretty awesome for getting it done.
There is a guard over the trimming head to help prevent any nicks or unintended cuts. You can remove this and do detail trimming and clean up hairline edges on the neck and around the sideburns.
Rechargeable NiCad batteries run the Remington MB200 and offer a reasonable run time. They charge in about an hour and are typically enough for several trims. Depending on how hard they work on your beard, the exact time will vary.
The problem with NiCad batteries is they can develop a memory. More expensive trimmers use Li-ion batteries which do not do this. It is important that you follow the instructions in the Remington manual to prevent decreasing the battery run time and life span.
The first time you charge the trimmer, you must leave it plugged in for at least 14 hours. This will give it a full charge and prepare it for a long life. After this, the battery can be fully charged in about one to three hours. Generally, you want to draw the battery down to almost dead before recharging. At a minimum, the batteries should be completely drained once every six months, and then charged for a 24 hour cycle.
One important thing to note: the power cable will only charge the battery. It will not run the trimmer. So, if the battery dies, don’t think that you can keep running the groomer by plugging it in.
|blade style||titanium coated, self lubricating|
|included:||cleaning brush, mustache and beard styling comb|
Cleaning and Maintenance
Remington built the MB-200 to be easy to maintain. Other than regular cleaning, there isn’t a whole lot to worry about.
A soft brush is included with the trimmer. That is supposed to be the only thing you will need to clean the MB-200A. The unit is not designed to be rinsed off, and I strongly recommend that you do not try it. I do not think that any of the parts have been designed to resist water, so even a light rinse is likely to get water into the electrical components of the groomer.
I did use a damp cloth on the body of my unit just to give it a fresh appearance. You might want to do the same.
To Oil, or Not to Oil…
Remington states the blades are self-lubricating and do not need oil. While you can probably get a long life out of the blades without a drop of oil, I still use a little light sewing machine oil on the blades. I find that this helps prevent any corrosion from being exposed to bathroom humidity, while keeping the blade temperature from friction down.
There are surprisingly few downsides to the Remington MB200 beard trimmer. However, they are significant and could be a deal-breaker for some people. So, I want to be perfectly clear about several of the potential problems that you might have with this trimmer.
First, the unit uses inexpensive construction techniques to help keep the cost down. While that means you can buy it for less than other models, it also means you should be a little more careful with it. I’m not saying it is fragile, but I am saying you don’t want to drop it onto a tile floor. That could crack the built-in comb that adjusts the trimming length. I’ve never dropped a beard trimmer, but it is something to be aware of.
Second, I really do not like that Remington used a NiCad battery in this trimmer. In my experience, NiCad batteries don’t last anywhere near as long as lithium ion batteries. Also, NiCad can sometimes be worn down too quickly due to charging habits. Make sure you take care of the batteries, and they should last for a couple of years. But you have to be careful to follow the charging instructions that are included in the instruction manual.
Should you need to change the batteries, the bad news is Remington has soldered the batteries into place. They do not intend for you to replace these. However, it can be done. In fact, this YouTube user shows you exactly how to do it, and upgrade the batteries in the process.
Third, even though there is a wide range of trimming lengths, from 1.5 mm to 18 mm, the steps are pretty big between them. So if you have a precise length you like to keep, this trimmer may not have the exact length you need. If it does, great. If not, you will probably be very unhappy.
The Remington MB200 is a solid beard trimmer. It is not the top model on the market, but it is reasonably priced and does a good job. If you are aware of the potential downsides to this trimmer (compared to more expensive models,) then it might be a good fit for you. But if you are interested in features that this trimmer does not have, I strongly encourage you to look at another beard trimmer like the Remington MB4040 or Philips Norelco QT4070. Both of these groomers offer many more features without jumping the price up too high.