One of the pillars of good grooming is being able to sculpt the perfect beard. When properly trimmed and shaped, facial hair can make jawlines stronger, faces slimmer, and even provide a bit of balance for those who are thinning on top.
Having a steady hand and an eye for detail is half of the battle. The rest is down to your beard trimmer of choice. This buzzing, bladed tool is the most important component in a man’s bathroom cabinet, so it pays to give it some careful consideration.
Different beard trimmers are suited to different needs. Allow us to introduce you to a few of our favourites and equip you with the know-how to choose the one that’s right for you.
Before you get your wallet out, there are a few variables to be aware of. How much should you pay? Is battery better than mains? Here’s everything you need to bear in mind when shopping for a beard trimmer.
First and foremost, it’s important to have a figure in mind. Beard trimmers tend to range from around £15 for something very basic up to £100+ for top-spec options with premium features. As is usually the case, you get what you pay for, so it’s worth aiming somewhere in the middle to be sure you end up with a trimmer that’s reliable, well built and easy to use. That’s not to say that good, budget options don’t exist, but always opt for a trusted brand in order to avoid disappointment.
Most beard trimmers are powered by a rechargeable battery, but not all. Some are mains powered, while other cheaper options still use standard AA batteries. A lot of this is down to personal preference. If your beard trimmer isn’t likely to be leaving the bathroom then a mains-powered set may be the most convenient. If, on the other hand, you travel a lot, or simply value convenience, then rechargeable or battery-powered is a better way to go.
Blades & Grades
A good beard trimmer’s blades will be made from stainless steel. They require a little maintenance – cleaning with a small brush and the occasional oiling – to keep running smoothly but should last a long time. Most trimmers also come with adjustable cutting guides that attach to allow different trimming lengths. If you want to cut and style, you’ll need one with plenty of settings.
Once you begin to venture into higher price brackets, more varied features begin to emerge. Things like hidden precision trimmers for carving, vacuum suction to avoid mess and even laser guides for the perfect neckline are all available for a price. Think about what sort of style you want to achieve and shop accordingly.
The Best Beard Trimmers Available Right Now
From simple shavers to tricked-out trimmers – here are the finest groomers on the market right now.
Best For: Travel
The Philips OneBlade offers a new take on the concept of a multi-groomer. It’s compact, simple to use and capable of cutting any length of hair. Designed for facial-hair styling, the OneBlade also doubles up as a body groomer – making it a great does-it-all option for travelling.
Three cutting lengths allow for anything from five-o-clock shadow to a short beard. Or simply remove the guard completely for an impressively close shave, without the need for water, foam or gel.
£33.32 at amazon.co.uk
Best For: A No-Frills Workhorse
Remington’s Barba Beard Trimmer may not be the flashiest, nimblest or most technologically advanced tool on the market, but it really doesn’t need to be. As far as budget-friendly options go, this is as good as it gets. A solid, sturdy trimmer capable of delivering professional performance at a fair price.
The Barba offers nine pre-set cutting lengths and ceramic-coated blades. There’s even a pop-up precision trimmer for shaping up lines or tackling those hard-to-reach places.
£17 at John Lewis
Babyliss Super Stubble XTP
Best For: Stubble
Cultivating stubble may seem straightforward enough, but if it’s to look good then regular maintenance is required. This nifty tool from Babyliss is ultra-precise, creating even, well-groomed stubble all over. A variety of guide combs can be attached for your desired length, meaning longer styles are achievable too.
To top it off, the trimmer’s “XTP” technology delivers fast charging that can last for up to 14 days. That means less chance of running out of juice halfway through your morning trim.
£66.67 at babyliss.co.uk
Panasonic i-Shaper ERGD60
Best For: Sculpting & Edging
It’s a beard trimmer, but not as you know it. The first thing that stands out about Panasonic’s i-shaper is its Stanley knife-like design. The blade is positioned vertically for an ergonomic grip while sculpting, and provides increased control for precision edging. If you struggle to carve a good neckline or cheekline, it could be the gadget you need to whip things into shape.
It’s not just for touching up, though. The i-shaper is just as adept at plain old trimming, too. And with 20 adjustable cutting lengths, there are plenty of options where that’s concerned.
£47.50 at shavers.co.uk
Philips Series 9000 Laser Guided Trimmer
Best For: Expert Precision
If there was ever irrefutable proof that we’re living in the future, this is surely it. The Philips Series 9000 beard trimmer is truly at the cutting edge of design. An in-built laser guidance system deploys a red line of light to show you exactly where you need to shave. Follow it for a sharp, symmetrical trim every time without fail.
There’s also something that Philips calls the “Lift & Trim System”, which raises hairs to the optimal position for cutting. That means you can take it all off in a single quick stroke.
£49.95 at allbeauty.com
Wahl Vacuum Stubble & Beard Trimmer
Best For: A Clean Shave
Powerful suction from the vacuum chamber in this innovative beard trimmer catches up to 96% of hair. That means you can spend more time carving things into shape and less worrying about the mess.
£64.99 at shavers.co.uk