Clipper Cut – Everything You Should Know From Basics to Styling

What is a clipper cut?

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What is a clipper cut? Have you ever wondered about those flawless haircuts some people sport? That’s the work of a clipper cut.

More than just a basic trim, a clipper cut uses specialized hair clippers to achieve a uniform length throughout, resulting in a clean and polished look.

This article will go into everything you need to know about clipper cuts, from the various styles like buzz cuts and fades to the essential tools for achieving a perfect clipper cut at home. We’ll also discuss how a clipper cut can simplify your grooming routine, keeping you looking sharp with minimal effort.

Whether you’re thinking about trying a new style or simply curious about this popular haircutting method, continue reading to know the benefits of a clipper cut and why it might be the ideal choice for your next hairstyle.

What Is A Clipper Cut?

Electric hair clippers achieve a clipper cut. They have oscillating blades that quickly and uniformly trim hair. This method allows for precise control over hair length through adjustable guards.

Differences Between Clipper Cuts and Other Types of Haircuts

Clipper cuts, scissor cuts, and razor cuts each serve distinct styling needs:

Scissor Cuts: It is best for detailed and textured styles. Scissors offer control over layering and are preferred for longer, more sculpted hairstyles.

Razor Cuts: It is suitable for creating tapered and layered looks with a textured finish. Razor cuts are ideal for softening thick hair but require professional handling to avoid damage.

The Most Popular Types of Clipper Cuts

Buzz Cut

The buzz cut is a simple and widely recognized style, achieved by cutting the hair to a uniform length across the entire head. It is low-maintenance, ideal for hot climates, and emphasizes facial features with its sharp simplicity.


The fade involves a gradual shortening of the hair from top to bottom. And you can go into how to cut a fade with clippers, for detail.

  • High Fade: Starts high on the head, creating a sharp contrast between the long top and short sides.
  • Mid Fade: Begins at the temples, offering a clean appearance without the starkness of the high fade.
  • Low Fade: This style starts just above the ears, fine transitioning from the longer hair on top to the shorter sides.

Crew Cut

Longer than a buzz cut, the crew cut maintains more length on top with tapered sides and back. It offers styling flexibility and suits various hair types, maintaining a clean and professional look.

High and Tight

This military-style cut features very short sides and back with a longer top. It is famous for its ease of maintenance and suitability for warm climates due to its minimal hair coverage.


The undercut combines long hair on top with short sides and back, creating a bold contrast. The long top can be styled in various ways, allowing versatility within its striking profile.

How to Get the Perfect Clipper Cut

Here’s a step-by-step direction to ensure you get the best results:

  1. Choosing the Right Barber or Salon

    Look for a barber or salon with good reviews, especially those noted for their proficiency with clipper cuts. Word-of-mouth recommendations can also be invaluable.

    Choose an expert with a verified track record in the specific style you want. Often, barbers specializing in clipper cuts have a portfolio you can check.

    Before the cut, consult with the barber to discuss your desired outcome. This talk will also give you a feel for their expertise and customer service.

    Clipper cut service from a barber

  2. Selecting the Appropriate Clipper and Guard Size

    Decide between manual and electric clippers based on your needs. Electric clippers are the most common and provide various options for speed and precision.

    Guards control the length of the haircut. Choose a guard size that matches the desired length of your haircut. Multiple guard sizes may be necessary for fades and more complex styles to transition smoothly between hair lengths.

    Selection of clippers and guard sizes for a clipper cut

  3. Preparation Steps Before Cutting

    Start with clean, dry hair. Wash your hair to remove dirt, oil, and product residue, which can affect how the clippers run through it.

    Towel dry your hair. Clippers work best on dry hair, as wet hair can clog the blades.

    Section your hair using clips, especially if you have longer hair or are planning a style with different lengths. Partition helps manage the cut and ensure even lengths all around.

    Hair washing in the barbershop

How to Do a Clipper Cut at Home – Tips and Techniques

Essential Tools and Accessories Needed

  • Quality Clippers: Choose a reliable set of electric clippers with various guard sizes. For flexibility, consider cordless models.
  • Additional Accessories: Include a barber’s comb, scissors for touch-ups, sectioning clips for long hair, a cape to catch hair, and a neck brush for clean-up.
  • Maintenance Supplies: Preserve your clippers with blade oil and a cleaning brush to keep them in optimal condition.


  1. Plan Your Cut: Have a clear plan for the hairstyle you want. Online tutorials can guide you through styles like buzz cuts, fades, or undercuts.
  2. Setup: Choose a well-lit area with a large mirror and an additional mirror to check the back of your head.
  3. Cutting Technique: Start with a higher guard size to prevent cutting too short. Use smooth, steady strokes and cut against the hair growth for an even finish.

Common Mistakes to Avoid During a DIY Clipper Cut

  • Skipping Prep: Start with clean, dry hair to prevent clogging the clippers.
  • Using Dull Blades: Keep sharp blades to avoid uneven cuts.
  • Rushing the Cut: Take your time to avoid mistakes, especially if you are inexperienced.
  • Over-Trimming: Begin with a more extended guard and gradually shorten it to bypass cutting too much hair.
  • Ignoring Hair Texture and Growth Patterns: Check your hair’s natural patterns for better cutting techniques.

Maintaining Your Clipper Cut

Keeping your clipper cut looking fresh requires regular care and the right tools.

Here’s how to make your style remain sharp and neat between visits to the barber.

Tips on Retaining the Look

Retain your hair clean and free from oil build-up, making it harder to maintain the style. Use a mild shampoo that does not overly strip natural oils.

Daily styling may be necessary for styles like the undercut or longer buzz cuts. Use lightweight styling products like pomades or gels to keep your hair in place without weighing it down.

Invest in high-quality hair styling products for short hair. Look for products that provide hold and texture without residue.

A fine-tooth comb is essential for precision styling, especially for tapered sides and back. Brushes can help evenly distribute natural oils through your hair, keeping it healthy and shiny.

Consider using tonics or scalp treatments if you regularly use clippers, as they can help soothe the scalp and prevent irritation caused by frequent shaving.

How Often You Should Trim to Restore the Style

  • Frequency of Trims: The frequency of your trims depends on the speed of your hair growth and the type of clipper cut you have. Generally, short styles like buzz cuts and fades may require trimming every 2 to 3 weeks to hold sharpness.
  • Regular Touch-Ups: These need to keep the look precise for fades and more styled cuts. It includes tidying up the edges and cleaning up any neckline or around the ears.


What is the best clipper for home use?

Choose a durable, easy-to-handle clipper with adjustable settings and attachments for home use. Models like the Wahl Elite Pro High-Performance Haircut Kit and the Philips Norelco Multigroom Series are popular. They are reliable, easy to use, and versatile for various hair lengths and styles.

Can clipper cuts work for all hair types?

Yes, clipper cuts are suitable for all hair types. However, the technique and guard size may need to be adjusted based on hair texture and density. Clippers are ideal for concise styles like buzz cuts and fade, which are versatile across different hair types.

What are the benefits of a clipper cut over other styles?

Clipper cuts are faster and more efficient than scissor cuts, offering uniformity and versatility. They allow for an even cut with the help of clipper guards. With regular washing and occasional touch-ups, you can easily maintain them. These benefits make them a preferred choice for consistent and quick hair styling.

What’s the difference between a clipper cut and a scissors cut?

A scissors cut is tailored to fit the contours of your head, blending hair naturally for a more customized style. It allows for flexibility in how the hair grows out, often appearing more “loose.” In contrast, a clipper cut provides a uniform, clean length and is typically tighter. This method is ideal for those who prefer a precise, low-maintenance look.

What is a dry clipper cut?

A dry clipper cut is performed on dry hair, either before or after the hair is dried following a wash. Cutting hair dry allows the stylist to see the hair’s natural fall and cut with greater precision. This method is excellent for achieving a precise, even length, making it a popular choice for those desiring a neat appearance.

Cuts and Style
Cuts and Style
At Cuts and Style, we help readers create personalized hairstyles and self-grooming using the best haircut tools. With a deep knowledge of the barbering industry, we bring our expertise on day-to-day tools to meet the needs of wise hair-clipper users. We are offering insights and advice beyond the ordinary. Whether it's sharing advice on the latest trends, hacks, tips, or a selection of top hair care products, we are dedicated to guiding those seeking the perfect blend of style to look good and, in turn, feel good. Join us on this journey where cutting and styling hair is a skill.
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