Which Clipper Should You Choose?

February 19, 2023

Hairdressers and barbers alike will need a good pair of clippers in their back pocket. What do you look for when choosing the right pair of clippers? Let us help you decide.

Corded vs. Cordless

Since the cordless hair clipper has been introduced to the market there is the constant debate over which one is better. Both have their pro's and con's, and a place on your station.

Corded clippers have been around for ages. They vary in size, shape and price. The main draw to a corded clipper is that it will most likely have more power. Since a corded clipper is plugged into its power source it will be more powerful and maintain the same amount of power throughout the entire haircut. This is the main reason barbers choose a corded clipper. A corded clipper is usually considered a more heavy duty clipper.

Another perk of the corded clipper is you do not have to worry about the battery dying during a haircut. This means that corded clippers are more reliable. However, they do have their downfall. Working in a busy salon or barbershop means we are often go go go! A power cord can easily get in the way or slow us down. It also makes changing up your station and moving around the barber shop more complex.

When cordless hair clippers were introduced to the world it changed the barber game! Just removing cords made for so much more room on our stations. As time has gone on they have improved as well, getting stronger and stronger all the time. The cordless hair clipper does tend to be a bit more pricey. You want to make sure your cordless clipper has a long battery life, which will mean investing in some high quality clippers. If you are using lower quality cordless clippers they will not be as strong and have a poor battery life. There is nothing worse than your cordless clipper dying mid fade!

Fixed Blade vs Adjustable Blade

There are two options for blade style on your professional hair clippers, a fixed blade and adjustable blade. Most older style, heavy duty clipper blades are a fixed blade. In this modern age, where the fade has become a very popular cut, an adjustable blade is most important. An adjustable blade means that you can move the blade up and down in length. So instead of having just your basic number attachment combs ( 1,2,3 ..etc..) you can now have 1 1/4, 1 1/2, 1 3/4..etc etc.. making for a better blended fade. You can adjust the blade by simply moving the taper lever up and down on the side of the clipper. The taper lever is one of the best clipper features to look for if you are a fade master!

However, the fixed blade of an Oster fast feed will cut through even the most thick hair! So when choosing your blade style it is important to think of your clientele. If you have mostly men with thick and wavy hair you may decide a strong fixed blade is better for you.

Fade Blade Vs Taper Blade

Back in the day professional clippers really only came with one blade option - the taper blade. With the growing popularity of the skin fade, came the fade blade. You'll still probably find most clippers will come with a taper blade, unless mentioned that they're for barbers specializing in fades.

A taper blade has more of a beveled shape to it. When a professional barber or hairdresser  learns to use clippers you are taught how to cut in a " C" or "scooping" motion. The beveled shape of a taper blade will help you achieve that motion. This will leave your fades with a softer finish.

A fade blade has become increasingly popular with the skin fade crowd. The fade blade is more of a flat blade that will get you closer to the head. This is great for removing any lines when doing a fade.

Luckily for professional hairdressers and barbers the best hair clippers will have a corresponding fade or taper blade available for purchase. It can't hurt you to have both!

Blade material

Again, the blade world has changed so much for barbers. We now have different materials to choose from.

Ceramic blades are a new up and comer that have added so much to the clipper game. These blades stay sharper longer and are heat resistant. Which means no more hot clipper blades on your clients head! These sharp blades won't corrode over time and are washable. They are great for cutting wet hair. However, they are a bit more fragile if dropped.

There are also steel blades. Like scissors, you can find blades in different types of steel. Steel blades are stronger than ceramic blades, however they are more likely to corrode or rust if exposed to water. These are best used if you are only cutting dry hair.

There are also titanium blades. Titanium is lighter than stainless steel and less corrosive, however it comes with a bigger price tag. But they make cutting hair, especially thick hair.. so much easier!


When purchasing your next set of hair clippers it is important to consider what will come with them. After all, when investing money we want to make sure we are getting the best bang for our buck. All high quality clippers will come with a cleaning brush, blade oil and guide combs. It is important to make sure you either purchase clippers with guide combs or purchase ones separately that will fit your clipper blades. These combs will help you achieve the desired length for every cut!

The Best Clippers for you ...

are the ones that make your day to day work better and easier. When considering which pair of clippers to add to your station, please remember to consider your clientele and their different hair types. The barber or hairdresser who has mostly shorter hair, clipper cuts will need a different clipper than the barber who is skin fading thick hair, all day long! Luckily for us there are so many different options out there .. so you are guaranteed to find the right clipper for you!

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