Have you looked in the mirror recently and realized you need to do something to tame your beard or other facial hair, but you’re not sure what to use? Without proper upkeep, stubble, beards, mustaches, and even your sideburns can work against you. Instead of looking sophisticated and masculine, you’re left with a ratty beard that’s full of split ends and snags. Without proper upkeep, you may notice that your beard is no longer growing, or maybe it’s started to look bushy and unkempt. Split ends can cause a beard to stop growing, can make it difficult to care for, and can even cause a once full and glossy beard to look unhealthy and disheveled. Unfortunately, split ends are unavoidable and all part of beard life. But if you want to keep growing your beard and want it to look healthy, then you need to learn how to properly take care of your beard and keep it growing strong, full, and thick. The best stubble trimmer can handle the job and keep all of your facial hair in check. But finding a trimmer that can handle shorter facial hair or the thickest beard isn’t always easy.
How Trimmers Can Tame That Mane
Beards and facial hair, in general, can be very high-maintenance, and getting rid of split ends is just part of the problem. Split ends can cause a couple of different issues. First, split ends can cause a beard to look wiry and unkempt. Next, it can slow down beard growth, which means, if you have dreams of growing out a glorious beard, then you need to take some serious inches off. If you have a cropped or shorter beard, then trimmers can be used to maintain the perfect length. Unlike longer beards, a shorter beard will need to be touched up frequently, in order to ensure that split ends don’t develop and wiry hairs don’t start creeping up. But learning how to trim a beard with scissors can be a big job and one that requires skill and training. Additionally, learning how to shape a long beard with scissors or clippers can leave your beard looking lopsided, especially if you’re new to beard care.
Stubble trimmers are often the most convenient solution if your beard desperately needs to be groomed and tamed.
However, using trimmers can be tricky on longer beards, especially if the beard is not all the same length. If you want to taper the sides of your beard to make it appear longer, then trimmers can get the job done. They can also be the perfect solution if you’re learning how to trim beard neckline and can clean up your look in a matter of minutes. Beard maintenance for beginners doesn’t have to be difficult.
The Right Trimmers for the Job
It can be all too easy to remove more hair than you intended, leaving your beard looking patchy, lopsided, or misshapen. That’s where stubble trimmers come in.
We’ve done our research and came across several models that pros and amateurs swear by. But many of these trimmers failed to pass our tests. We chose models that excelled in a variety of areas including quality, durability, length options, and power.
With so many trimmers on the market, it took a period of several days to finally narrow our choices down to the top six stubble trimmers that were not only tough and powerful but affordable as well. Below, you’ll find a comparison chart that lists the differences between each of the models we reviewed, including cost, rating, length settings, whether the trimmer was corded or battery powered, and if the trimmer was wet shave approved.
Top Stubble Trimmers Comparison Chart
Our Top Picks For 2019
If you’re in need of a reliable, powerful trimmer to help you maintain a certain stubble length or touch up your beard, then the six models below can get the job done. Each model has something special to offer, whether it’s the best value for the price, the best trimmer for long beards, or even a trimmer that specializes in attachments for mustache maintenance.
Best Overall Stubble Trimmer-Philips Norelco Multi Groomer MG7750/49 Beard Trimmer
The Multi-Groomer by Philips Norelco is one of their top-selling models. This isn’t your average stubble trimmer. In fact, it can handle all of your trimming needs for your ears, nose, neck, sideburns, beard, goatee, and mustache. It features the patented dual-blade design that essentially passes over the skin twice with a single movement. This ensures you get the smoothest shave possible. This model also comes with several length setting options so you can experiment with your look or maintain the current length of your beard, mustache, and sideburns. Compact, lightweight, and affordably priced, the Multi-Groomer is a multitasking machine that’s got you covered.
Best Beard Trimmer-Conair Man i-Stubble Ultimate Flexhead Trimmer
The i-Stubble by Conair features the patented flexhead design that will allow the trimmer to glide smoothly across the contours of your face, jawline, and neck, ensuring a smooth shave or trim, without the irritation. It’s a perfect option for people with sensitive skin and comes loaded with hair length options that will allow you to easily maintain your well-groomed look.
Best for Long Beard-Panasonic ER-GB40-S Precision Beard Trimmer
Loaded with a variety of length options, and able to handle both dry and wet shaves, this latest model from Panasonic is sleek, lightweight, and powerful. The unique blade design places the blades in a forty-five-degree angle, ensuring the blade makes full contact with your skin, for a closer shave. The trimmer also comes with some great extras you’ll love, including a rubberized ergonomic grip and a quick adjust dial that allows you to change the length settings in seconds.
Best for Mustache-Remington MB4040 Lithium Ion Powered Mustache, Beard and Stubble Trimmer Kit
The MB4040 is a lightweight mustache and beard trimmer that will whip your facial hair into shape in no time, thanks to the three blade attachments and the titanium coated blades. The blades are also self-sharpening and self-oiling, for a smoother, closer shave. This low-maintenance model also comes with a variety of length setting options that you can use for your sideburns, beard and mustache. It’s a great buy if you’re searching for a versatile model that can do so much more than give you a clean shave.
Best Deal-Philips Norelco OneBlade Hybrid Electric Trimmer
The OneBlade is an impressive hybrid trimmer by Philips Norelco that acts as both a razor and a trimmer. It features a slimmer design compared to the average trimmers, allowing you to easily hold and guide the trimmer over the contours of your neck and face in order to achieve the perfect beard shape for round face. This model is also wet and dry shave approved so you can use it in the shower, or with your favorite beard oils and shaving products.
Best Cordless-Philips Norelco Beard Trimmer 7100 Vacuum Trimmer
The 7100 Vacuum trimmer by Philips Norelco is unlike any other model you’ll come across on our list. It features a built-in vacuum that’s designed to suck up any hair clippings as you trim, for zero cleanup. Not only is this a low-maintenance trimmer, but it also comes with self-sharpening and self-oiling blades, several length setting options, and a lightweight design that makes the shaver comfortable to hold.
Stubble Trimmer Buyer’s Guide
The best stubble trimmer will make grooming and taming your wild beard, goatee, or sideburns, much easier. The more accessories and attachments you have, the more setting lengths and styling options available. Basically, a stubble trimmer can do so much more than keep your stubble or beard at the perfect length.
With a good stubble trimmer, one thing you’ll notice right away is how much time you’ll save. Additionally, if you have sensitive skin, then using a razor can cause problems in a number of ways. Not only will you save serious time using a stubble trimmer, but you also won’t have to deal with ingrown hairs or razor burn ever again.
If you decide to grow your facial hair out, then a stubble trimmer will keep it looking nice and clean, regardless of the guard size you use.
Imagine using just a pair of clippers with no guard to trim your stubble or beard. Clippers will not do as good of a job as a pro-quality stubble trimmer.
In general, most stubble trimmers are easy to use, so owning one will completely take the stress out of keeping your facial hair neatly trimmed. If you’d like to learn more about finding the perfect style, click here to read our article on easy hairstyles to do yourself.
Making that Final Decision
So, how do you choose the right trimmer? Take a look at a trimmer’s features before you make a final decision.
Important features include:
- Trim length options
- Waterproof design
- Power source
- Charge time
Most trimmers will come with a variety of adjustable combs that clip onto the trimmer itself and allow you to cut your stubble or beard at different lengths. If you want a model that you can use to style or trim your facial hair then you need trimmers that come with a wide variety of length options. Some models will come with precision trimming settings, which consist of extra blades that are usually concealed on the trimmer itself and can be twisted around in order to connect with the trimmer’s main blade.
Corded or Battery-Powered
Obviously, a battery-powered trimmer will be more convenient and flexible to use compared to a traditional corded shaver. Cordless trimmers that are waterproof also make trimming a breeze. However, while more convenient to use, there are some drawbacks that come with using a cordless trimmer.
First off, a cordless trimmer is nowhere near as powerful as a corded model. More power equals a trimmer that can cut using a higher speed and all without pulling on your facial hair.
Another issue is battery life. With a corded trimmer, you won’t have to rush through your grooming routine because you’re worried about the shaver dying in the middle of a trim.
Most battery-powered trimmers have an indicator light that will allow you to monitor its battery life.
Not all trimmers will operate on a single speed. Some will come with a few speed options that you’ll choose based on the thickness of your stubble.
If you don’t use your trimmer daily, then the charge time may not be a big deal. But if you use it more than a few times a week, then how long it takes to charge is going to matter. While there are models out there that can fully charge up in as little as an hour, lower-priced trimmers can take more than ten hours to charge. If you’re constantly forgetting to put the trimmer back on its charging cradle then you need a trimmer with a faster than average charge time.
Wet and Dry Trimming Options
Some men prefer to trim their stubble or beard before they shower, while others want a trimmer they can use when they’re in the shower. These days, many models can accommodate both wet and dry shaving, while some trimmers are designed for dry shaves only.
You will only have to worry about this spec if you’re interested in a cordless trimmer. A trimmer’s runtime is the length of time it can operate per charge. On average, you’ll find trimmers that have a twenty to thirty-minute runtime per charge, however, there are some models that have a fifty to sixty-minute runtime.
Finding the right trimmer isn’t exactly easy. Many low and moderately priced trimmers can break on you within a matter of months, especially if you use it often. If you’re not sure whether or not the trimmer you’re interested in is designed to last, pay close attention to the specs. A model that’s made out of stainless steel will be the most durable. These trimmers are often more expensive, but if you like to keep up on your facial hair daily, then a high priced trimmer will be worth every penny.
What are the Advantages of Using a Stubble Trimmer?
Aside from the fact that a trimmer can save you time and money, buying a trimmer can also be a great alternative to traditional shaving since most modern trimmers are less irritating on the skin. If you’re prone to razor burn or ingrown hairs, then using a trimmer can be a great option.
When you’re choosing a setting on your trimmer based on the length of your stubble or beard, then you should pay close attention to the trimmer’s length setting for stubble, or a short, medium, or long beard.
For a short beard, which includes stubble, you can use a length setting from 0.4 millimeters to 0.5 millimeters.
For a medium length beard, you can use a setting that ranges from five millimeters up to twelve millimeters. If you’ve decided to let your stubble grow out and you want to keep a longer beard neatly groomed, you’ll use a setting length that ranges from twelve millimeters up to twenty-five millimeters. However, keep in mind that only a few stubble trimmers will go above twenty millimeters.
Additionally, just because a model may have a cutting length that goes up to twenty-five millimeters does not mean that it will have several length options for stubble or medium length beards.
Are Beard Trimmers and Stubble Trimmers the Same Thing?
Often beard trimmer and stubble trimmer are used interchangeably, and in most cases, they function the same. However, there are some models that can handle keeping your stubble trimmed neatly, while a model that’s specifically designed for beards may have only one stubble setting. A good stubble trimmer will have length settings that reduce your beard down to 0.3 centimeters. However, a regular beard trimmer may not have this type of lower setting, which is why it’s always important to pay attention to a spec sheet in order to determine just how flexible a particular model is. Bottom line, in most cases, a beard trimmer and stubble trimmer are the same thing, however, some models of trimmers that are specifically marketed for beards may not have the type of lower settings you’re looking for. So, before you buy check out the length options.
Length options can be especially important if you want to maintain that 5 o’clock shadow look, in which case you would want to use a length setting of 0.2 millimeters. You must make sure that the trimmer you choose has this type of lower length setting in order to achieve the looking you’re going for.
When you’re shopping around for a beard trimmer, you should be able to easily tell the difference between a high-quality trimmer and a cheap one. Most lower-priced trimmers will have carbon steel blades which can work well in the beginning but are often known to rust if they’re exposed to humidity often. Models with stainless steel blades would be the best option since stainless steel does not rust.
However, there are some pros and cons when it comes to stainless steel blades as well. Stainless steel blades are perfect for thicker hair, and they are corrosion-resistant, however, these blades usually need to be sharpened more frequently compared to carbon steel blades.
If you really want top of the line blades, look for a model that’s equipped with titanium coated carbon steel blades. These blades can endure humidity, are more precise and they won’t wear down quickly after sharpening.
Ceramic blades are another option, but trimmers that use these are often more expensive compared to trimmers that use carbon steel or stainless steel blades.
Most stubble trimmer sets with come with a few accessories such as three-millimeter combs, five-millimeter combs, and a precision comb. A cheaper trimmer will only come with an accessory or two, unlike high-priced sets that come with a wide variety of styling attachments. So, regardless of how short your facial hair is, you’ll definitely find an accessory you can use that’s designed to give your stubble or beard a cleaner, well-groomed look.
How to Prevent Ingrown Hairs When Using Your New Trimmer
It’s pretty common for men new to stubble trimmers to get ingrown hairs. This is because they don’t realize that their skin needs to be prepared prior to using the trimmer. If you don’t have the best stubble trimmer and you don’t prepare your skin, then you may not be able to use your trimmer as often as you like. If you have a very short beard or light stubble, then this can leave you looking unkempt and sloppy. Below, we have some great tips that will teach you how to properly use your new trimmer, right off the bat, so you can avoid the learning curve and enjoy facial hair that’s neatly groomed.
If you exfoliate, you’re basically removing the dead skin that can trap hair and turn them into ingrown hairs. To exfoliate, all you have to do is lightly scrub your face with an exfoliating scrub.
If you didn’t already know, heat works to open up the pores, which can result in a cleaner shave. If you don’t want to use your trimmer in the shower, place a hot towel over your face prior to shaving, or you can even quickly use your trimmer as soon as you get out of the shower.
Sharpen Your Trimmers Often
Before you use your trimmer, always make sure the blades are clean and sharp. If you don’t use your trimmer in the shower, you’ll need to wash it regularly. The blades should also be sharpened as needed. If you’re not sure how to tell whether or not the blades are sharp enough, if the trimmer begins to pull out your stubble instead of cutting it, this is a major indication that you’re trimming with dull blades.
Shaving with the Grain
Stubble doesn’t always grow in the same direction. When you’re using your trimmer, follow the direction of the hair growth and try to shoot for using as few strokes as possible. This process can be time-consuming, however, it’s necessary in order to avoid irritation.
If you’re known to periodically shave off your stubble or beard, when you do so, make sure you use gel or shaving cream with warm water. There are dozens of shaving products on the market that are designed to prevent ingrown hairs. If possible, try to avoid using a foam since it tends to dry out the skin. Instead, use a clear gel. A good trimmer should be able to do a dry or wet shave no problem, and if you’re lucky enough, you can even take your trimmer with you in the shower.
Make sure the trimmer you buy has a cover over the blades, which will prevent them from getting too close to your skin and causing cuts and/or irritation. The cover will shield you from cuts and can also help to prevent ingrown hairs.
The best stubble trimmer should feature several length options for stubble, especially if you’re going for the 5 o’clock shadow look. It should also come with a few settings for a short to medium length beard, especially if you prefer to grow out your facial hair during the colder months of the year. A versatile shaver equipped with setting options, a durable design, and blades that are easy to sharpen will save you plenty of time in the mornings. We hope our buyer’s guide and our reviews of the six best models on the market will help you narrow down your choices and allow you to find the perfect trimmer that can work with your skin type, shaving needs, and budget.