In case you hadn’t noticed, beards are back. In fact, they’ve been in vogue for a number of years now – much to the relief of the shaving-averse and those men who feel best with hair on their face.
That said, the truly unruly mountain man look doesn’t appear poised to make a resurgence – so keep it neat and keep it clean.
Today, we give you the guidance you need, on picking the best beard trimmer for your – short or long beard look – whichever style you choose.
Why trim? Regular beard trimming keeps hairs healthy and even, helping you look great. Modern beard trimmers are adjustable, include combs and accessories, have long runtimes, feature exciting technology, and look cool.
1. Philips Series 7000 11-in-1 Ultimate Multi Grooming Kit
This versatile, fast-cutting beard trimmer from Philips—an established manufacturer of grooming and personal care products—comes with eleven styling tools, making it suitable for whole-body use.
Philips Series 7000 Multi Groom Features
Eleven quality tools, including a metal trimmer and detail trimmer, two stubble combs, a beard comb, numerous other combs for head, face and body, as well as ear and nose trimmer attachments, make the Philips Series 7000 11-in-1 a perfect all-round trimmer to use from head to toe.
Incorporating Philips’ precise, self-sharpening, DualCut stainless steel blades and an impressive 100-minute runtime (almost twice that of many trimmers) the Series 7000 cuts clean and runs long.
It’s one hundred percent waterproof, too. Take it in the shower; rinse it off in the sink.
And if you’re in a hurry, the quick charge function feeds enough power to the internal battery for a full trim in just five minutes.
An ergonomic, no-slip rubber grip provides comfort and control even when wet, while impact-resistant molded plastic stubble, beard, hair and body combs glide comfortably over skin, minimizing irritation.
What’s not to like?
Some users find the number of attachments excessive – there are a lot of combs to keep track of (though it’s manageable with the included case). Once you’ve been using the trimmer for a while get to know at the bits and pieces.
That said, we consider the Series 7000 11-in-1 a solid mid-priced trimmer, and perfect for the man whose trimming needs span head to toe. It will quite easily cut all facial hair types cleanly – something to bear in mind if your beard is tough as nails.
2. Philips Series 7000 Beard and Stubble Less Mess Vacuum Trimmer
This beard trimmer sucks. There, we said it. It literally sucks – the cut hairs off of your face.
A unique, integrated vacuum system keeps sinks and countertops largely free of stubble, so you can focus on the task at hand – or face, if you will.
Philips Vacuum Beard Trimmer Key Features
Not only does Philips’ Series 7000 Less Mess Vacuum Trimmer catch up to ninety percent of cut hairs, it trims up to twice as fast as other Philips trimmers, thanks to a bit of magic called DualCut technology – a high-performance, double-sharpened, self-sharpening cutting element with a durable stainless steel guard.
And the lift-and-trim system raises hairs toward the blades, ensuring an even trim in fewer strokes.
Though the Less Mess Vacuum Trimmer isn’t waterproof, the blade and accessories can be removed and cleaned under running water.
This Philips trimmer is likewise easy to use – just turn the handle-integrated zoom wheel and set the trimmer to your desired length of 0.5 to 10mm, clearly displayed in half-millimetre increments.
Click the lock-in comb in place and trim away.
A precision trimmer attachment lets you define your neckline, moustache and sideburns, while the 60-minute run and charge times mean this trimmer is ready to go when you are – and it can even be used while charging.
Let’s hear the Cons…
No design is infallible – some users report confusing instructions, flimsy attachment clips and less-than optimal performance on longer beards. The vacuum makes it more suited to short beards, as the vacuum can get clogged if you’re beard is very long.
However, a majority enjoy the precision, performance and mess-minimizing features offered by the Philips Series 7000 Beard and Stubble Less Mess Vacuum Trimmer.
It’s well worth your consideration as a labour-saving grooming tool, and a well deserving contender for the top spot.
3. Wahl Total Beard Trimmer Kit with Beard Oil
Since 1919, Wahl has designed and manufactured high-quality grooming tools. You’ll find their clippers and trimmers in barber shops the world over.
In fact, a century ago, Leo J. Wahl made history, with his patented electromagnetic hair trimmer, followed decades later by the first system with an integrated vacuum.
The tradition continues today, with the Wahl Total Beard Trimmer Kit with Beard Oil for the best precision beard trimming at home.
Wahl Total Beard Trimmer Kit Features
The Wahl Total Beard Trimmer has serious staying power: up to 180 minutes—that’s three hours—of cordless use, thanks to the integrated, high-power, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries.
This is quite possibly the longest-running cordless beard trimmer on the market. And with a 60-minute charge time and 1-minute quick charge feature, you’ll never be caught short-handed.
Precisely ground, self-sharpening, high-carbon blades offer excellent toughness, and can shear stubble down to 0.5mm in length.
Want to go longer? No problem—Wahl’s Total Beard Trimmer includes four attachment combs, spanning lengths of 1.5 to 12mm—enough to cover most styles.
And the light weight, vibration-reducing design and anti-slip grip ensure the Total Beard Trimmer remains comfortable even during periods of prolonged use.
Wahl thoughtfully included a bottle of mint-scented beard oil. While not necessary to use, it provides a pleasant, refreshing scent, cools the skin, and helps keep facial hair healthy.
Insufficiently rigid combs and a tendency to tug on hair are weak points in Wahl’s otherwise solid design.
Nonetheless, the Total Beard Trimmer makes for a good, no-nonsense choice made to do one thing well with a minimum of effort.
4. Panasonic ER-GB86 Wet and Dry Ultimate Beard Trimmer
From Panasonic—makers of myriad high-tech tools and toys—comes the ER-GB86 Wet and Dry Ultimate Beard Trimmer. Quite a mouthful, isn’t it?
Let’s find out if the the ER-GB86 lives up to its impressively multisyllabic name.
Panasonic ER-GB86 Key Features
It’s said there’s strength in numbers. Panasonic aims to prove that right. Most beard trimmers offer a variety of length settings—but none other than the ER-GB86 offer a whopping 58 cutting lengths, spanning from 0.5 to 30mm.
With so many lengths to choose from, you’ll appreciate Panasonic’s acutely ground, 45-degree stainless steel blades.
They were designed to cut quickly, efficiently and with a minimum of irritation. A special 30mm attachment lines up unruly whiskers, making it possible for even beginners to trim and shape long beards.
The ER-GB86, with its strong, high-torque motor and widely pitched blade spacing, is one of the few beard trimmers on the market geared especially toward men with tough, dense and long facial hair.
That said, its ability to cut as short as 0.5mm makes it equally well-suited to maintaining fashionable stubble.
The worst thing the Panasonic ER-GB86 Wet and Dry Ultimate Beard Trimmer has going for it is the price—at a cost of nearly £70, it’s more expensive than many other trimmers.
But its versatility, heft, solid design, quality materials, large, rotary-style length control dial and outstanding performance make it stand out in a market filled with oftentimes good, but seldom perfect, beard trimmers.
How to Choose and Use the Best Beard Trimmer
Function and Form
Consider a trimmer’s most important features—size, ergonomics, battery life, performance—and whether they meet your needs.
Small, plainly shaped trimmers are fine for infrequent use, but opt for larger, more robust models with hand-filling shapes and ergonomic features for regular and extended use.
Likewise, look for a beard trimmer whose battery provides at least fifty to sixty minutes of runtime. Much less, and you’ll be plugging in to recharge more often than is convenient.
Finally, choose a trimmer that cuts well, maintains adequate power output, and trims as closely and evenly as you need it to—especially if you have dense or otherwise challenging facial hair.
Consider how many attachments and accessories you need—will a dozen extra pieces be a help or a hindrance? If you like to experiment with different beard styles and lengths, or are unsure which look suits you best, choose a trimmer with plenty of combs or precision attachments.
Conversely, if you’ve got your style down pat, or like to keep things simple and uncluttered, opt for a trimmer with a wide range of built-in adjustability or a small quantity of number-graded combs.
Though few designs are entirely without flaw, it’s nevertheless important select a beard trimmer from an established, reputable manufacturer. Certain brands have stayed in business for as long as they have with good reason.
Corded or Cordless?
Most trimmers today are cordless, powered by long-lasting rechargeable batteries. Such trimmers are convenient in both storage and use—no electrical wires to get tangled or restrict movement.
If you’re the sort to keep devices charged, go with a cordless trimmer. If you regularly find yourself rushing out of the house with your phone’s battery down to ten percent, you might be better off with a corded trimmer—or one with a quick-charge feature or pass-through charging.
Jack of All Trades, or Master—of One Are you a Swiss Army Knife kind of guy? Perhaps an all-in-one trimmer, capable of tackling both face and body, is for you. Multipurpose trimmers have their advantages: one tool costs less than two, and takes up half the space.
But if your personal philosophy leans more toward having exactly the right tool for the job, take a look at a dedicated beard trimmer.
They’re optimized for cutting facial hair, and may offer superior performance, particularly on tough or otherwise difficult beards.
Wet or Dry Beard Trimmer?
Some beard trimmers are sufficiently watersealed that they may be used in the shower, rinsed off under the tap—or used dry.
They’re perfect for the busy man who trims in the shower or immediately after to shave precious minutes from his morning routine. Time-savings aside, however, the benefits of wet-trimming—as opposed to wet-shaving—are negligible.
If your schedule permits wet or dry use of a beard trimmer, select a model which best meets other criteria.
Can’t Save Cash and Just Trim With Scissors?
Of course you can. But a beard trimmer will give superior results. Adjustable cutting length, the ability to lift and align facial hair, and of course, ease and speed of cutting, all make the electric beard trimmer the preferred choice for styling and maintaining your beard.
A well-kept beard of any length, from subtle stubble to a magnificent outcrop jutting forth from one’s chin, simply looks and feels better.
Invest in a quality trimmer; save time, save money; and look your best. Your beard will thank you.