I tested 6 products and found the Wahl Professional Senior Clipper to be the best clippers for fades.
Whether you are looking for the most professional hair clippers available, or are just looking for a pair of fade hair clippers to use yourself, you need a reliable pair of clippers that can create sharp, clean lines. The fading clippers should be lightweight and include the necessary accessories to achieve the desired look.
The research that went into creating the list of the best fade clippers relied on consumer reviews, personal experience cutting my own hair, brand recognition, and more. Every option on the list features highly durable and trusted hair trimmers to create the perfect fade for various experience levels.
Wahl’s Professional Senior Clipper is the best overall option because it gives you power, precision, and reliability all in one. It comes with six cutting guides, a blade guard, and additional accessories that make for an optimal fade cut. While intended for professional use, those experienced at cutting hair from home can also take advantage of this excellent hair trimmer.
It runs for 70 minutes before the battery gives out, at which time you can switch to the cord that comes with the clipper. The Wahl brand is well known for supplying top-notch hair cutting and styling tools, and the Senior Clipper from the 5-Star Series delivers.
You’ll also find that each choice on the list is the “best” in a particular category, such as power, budget-friendly, build quality, efficiency, and best barber clippers. This breakdown helps buyers to find the best clippers for their specific needs and highlights the overall strength of each product.
Keep reading to learn more about the different types of hair clippers and which features to look for when trying to find the best hair clippers for fades.
Best Clippers for Fades
Your haircut will only be as good as the clippers you use. Regardless of your ability to fade hair, you need an excellent clipper with sharp blades. Here’s a list of some of the best clippers for fading hair.
Wahl Professional Senior Clipper is a 5-Star Senior Clipper designed for professional use only. This model is the best Wahl clippers for fades, optimally crafted to provide experts with the sharp edge necessary for perfect haircuts. Additionally, the clippers feature a zero-overlap design, ideal for tapering and on-scalp fading.
With the Wahl Professional Senior Clipper, you can make continuous and seamless blends while soft or hard-line fading. The lever adjusts the texture and taper. This clipper is excellent for removing hair in bulk. The clipper comes with a durable metal case to protect your clippers and all accessories.
The 5-Star Series Cordless Senior Clipper comes fully equipped with all accessories required for optimal use. The clippers come with a recharging transformer, six cutting guides, a cleaning brush, a red blade guard, oil, operating instructions, and a styling comb. The clipper and the accessories assure that you have a professional-level product.
These barber clippers are cordless and weigh only 13 ounces, making it very lightweight and easy to transport. It has a lithium-ion battery that can last up to 70-minutes on a full charge and runs on a rotary motor. The Wahl Professional 5-Star Series also comes with a warranty from the manufacturer.
Lastly, the Wahl clipper guarantees that you’ll get powerful torque with these clippers, which catapults it to the top of the list when considering its performance level and cutting power. It even comes with a cord if your clipper dies while in use. The cord is both resistant to chemicals and heavy-duty, which is a great combination to ensure that it lasts for a long time.
Portable and lightweight
Equipped with high precision sharp blades
Clipper comes with high impact metal case
A cordless model with the option to use with a cord
It comes with a warranty from the manufacturer
Equipped with professional-grade accessories
A bit noisy
Can overheat from time to time
The Wahl 5-Star Legend Clipper is an excellent clipper for fades. This clipper is expertly crafted for gradually tapering hair. It has eight attachments, cutting guides, and a cleaning brush.
The blade itself is ideal for achieving the perfect fade look. The blade is adjustable, closing at a 3 and opening up at a full 1. The blade is sturdy and doesn’t dull quickly.
This corded clipper is for use in the barbershop, at home, or in any indoor setting with electrical outlets. It boasts an ergonomic design that feels great in your hand, along with an excellent design.
Precision is essential with clippers intended to fade, and this clipper is very precise. The clipper has a v9000 motor which has a reputation for being energy efficient. This motor is quality and quite faster in performance compared to cheaper models.
The Wahl Professional Legend Clipper has a unique “crunch” blade technology feature. There’s even a thumb adjuster taper for tapering the hair adeptly; this gives you the ability to cut smooth and seamless fades with the blades and the help of the adjuster.
The blade guards allow you to blend different hair textures. For instance, if you’re looking to achieve a tight fade, just use ½ guard to blend between the aforementioned open (1) and closed guards (3). The build quality on these clippers is exceptional.
Power v9000 motor
Has unique crunch blade technology
Perfect for achieving fades and other cuts
Versatile for achieving different hairstyles
It comes equipped with several attachment combs
The guards are not in order numerically
The cord is short and hinders movement
The attachments aren’t magnetic
The Fast Feed Hair Clipper from Oster’s line of simple corded clippers is comfortable and professional. One of the most notable features is Oster’s trademark fast feed function on all their clippers.
The Oster Clipper does not get as hot as the Wahl hair Clipper after extended use. This clipper has an ergonomic body that makes it very easy to use for a full day if necessary, and you don’t have to worry about heat radiating from the clipper. This clipper is easy to use and is perfect for anyone starting as an aspiring barber or stylist.
The blades are sturdy and durable; they have tested cryogenic, stainless steel blades. These robust clippers can cut with virtually the same accuracy as the top-rated clippers on our list.
The distance between the blades is a little wider than a conventional clipper — this makes short supply blades better and gives you the freedom to cut thicker hair faster.
A good blade deserves a great engine, and this clipper includes a rotatable rotor. Although it is a bit weaker than the Seniors’ V9000, it is more respectable and won’t compromise your results.
The advantage of having a slightly less powerful engine is that it is not noisy when you use it over a long period.
You get four guides included in the package
It doesn’t make much noise, and the vibrations are low
Come with an eight-foot-long power cord
It is lightweight
It is extremely user-friendly
It has a weaker 9W motor
It has a plastic housing
May have to buy guide combs separately
The cord can get in the way when cutting
Remington’s HC420 Shortcut Pro has a different look than the conventional. The ergonomic shape of the clipper makes it easier to hold than typical clippers. You can hold this clipper at any angle you choose, and it still works, making it safer for you. It cuts considerably faster, especially when you take into account its size. It’s also easier to trim the sides of the hair to trim the neckline.
These blades are suitable for thick and coarse hair, capable of cutting through it in seconds. Additionally, due to its curved blades, it provides a broader coverage when cutting. This clipper comes with comb attachments that are different in length ranging from 1.5mm to 15mm.
You are sure to take note of the fading clipper, which is unique to the Remington HC420 Shortcut Pro. Its productivity is due to its carefully crafted shape and design. This clipper allows you to trim hair effortlessly.
Thanks to the convenient design of this cordless clipper, you can cut back and forth without changing your grip as you would with conventional clippers; consequently, you can cut hair much faster because of this feature. This clipper can last up to 40 minutes when fully charged as it has a built-in lithium battery.
Unfortunately, the blade on this clipper is not adjustable, as with the Oster and Wahl. As a result, you will have to use the several guide combs the clipper comes with. You can use these different combs to achieve different hair lengths successfully.
Ergonomic design facilitates a firm grip
Come with nine combs
Cuts hair efficiently and quickly
Blades are sturdy and durable
Charges to a full battery quickly
The battery life is a little short
Due to its unique shape, it may take some time to learn to use it
The Andis 74100 GTX-EXO is one of the best professional hair clippers available for those who want to take your styling to the next level. These cordless clippers work to trim hair into a continuous fade seamlessly. The ergonomic shape of the clipper allows you to shave, fade, and outline hair expertly.
The blades are an improvement from their predecessor and cut closer than before, and you can make it zero-gapped should you want it to be that way.
This cordless hair clipper means less restriction and an unbridled flow when cutting hair. These are the best cordless clippers for fades. Just make sure that you have a sufficient amount of battery before you begin cutting.
The lithium-ion batteries can supply the clipper for over 100 minutes. These Andis clippers are extremely precise, more so than most clippers, enabling it to make great cuts at sharp angles. Versatile enough to be used as a beard trimmer.
The ergonomic design makes it easy to hold
Option to make it zero-gapped
Lithium-ion batteries can last over 100 minutes
Precision clipper great for outlining, shaving, and fading hair
A bit noisy
Have to get used to the grip
Charge time can be lengthy
The Renpho is an excellent clipper to achieve the perfect fade haircut. It also features self-sharpening blades, so you don’t have to worry about them dulling. This clipper comes with three guide combs of 1–3mm, and the fade clipper offers close-cutting abilities.
This cordless clipper comes equipped with a DC power motor; this motor provides efficient speed and reduces unnecessary friction. The convenience of this clipper enables you to take them anywhere you wish so long as the battery is full.
You can charge the Renpho via USB. The stainless steel blades of the clipper allow it to make precise cuts which are ideal for the fade hairstyle. The clipper comes with lubricating oil, a pouch, a cleaning brush, and a charger. Other features to consider are the precision speed control and the zero-gap setting.
The clipper comes in a nice package as the contents are in a stylish box. The small size of the clipper makes it easy to hold and maneuver when trying to hit precise angles. It’s so small you can place it in your pocket and go if you wish.
The Renpho is a cordless clipper with a 1400mAh battery that is USB compatible, which is very convenient when it comes time to charge it. Additionally, it has a small LED display that shows the percentage of your battery with a charging indicator to boot. This clipper can last four hours on a full charge.
The rotary motor has four speed settings that range from 5500 rpm to 7000 rpm. The 7000 rpm speed setting is on par with a magnetic motor clipper.
Buying Guide: Best Clippers for Fades
A fade haircut is a classic and timeless look that many men and women choose to rock. Selecting the best hair clippers to get the clean and crisp lines needed to make the haircut stand out can be tricky.
That’s why I’ve taken the time to assemble pointers so that you know what to look for since the clipper should be able to blend lines, cut thick or thin hair, and be easy to maneuver.
Consider the following factors when shopping around for the best hair clippers for fades.
You must consider blade material when finding suitable clippers to do a fade. The blade is an essential part of the clippers because that’s what you’ll use to create those clean and precise lines that make the fade look amazing. Most clipper blades are stainless steel because they’re rust-resistant solid, affordable, and durable.
They don’t require much maintenance, as you just need to clean them regularly, and you won’t have to replace them for a while, depending on usage. Nonetheless, there are still some blades that are stylish and more durable than stainless steel while being just as sharp.
Other blade types that you might want to consider when looking for clippers are ceramic, titanium, and carbon-coated. Titanium blades are three times stronger than stainless steel blades; they are usually the most expensive, virtually indestructible, and self-sharpening.
The carbon blades are more durable than stainless steel, but ceramic has sharper blades over other alternatives.
The blade type that works best without maintenance is ceramic because it doesn’t heat up quickly after extended use but still cuts better than most other blades under the same conditions. The drawback of this blade type is that it’s not as strong as some other choices. You can break it more easily with excessive pressure.
Going back to a stainless steel option, it is the most common purely because of its strength. You have to oil the blades before and after each cut, which is how you can maintain it for longer. They’ll last about a year, but you can replace them with alternative blade types, depending on the thickness of your hair.
Additional Blade Features
Specific features such as self-sharpen blades are becoming more prevalent on your standard set of clippers. The best clippers from notable brands like Oster, Wahl, and Andis now come equipped with these self-sharpening blades.
Every time you turn the clippers on and the motor starts running, the blades will sharpen themselves.
The benefit of this feature is that it prevents the blades from getting dull as quickly as they would if you had to sharpen them on your own every few months. They are also more expensive than other choices, but many professionals see that as the cost-effective option that you’ll need to replace less frequently.
You can also check out features such as quick charging, a battery status indicator for clippers that you can’t use while charging, and an LED display on some of the newer wireless models.
Think of the clipper motor as a car engine; more power is a good thing. The motor is what propels the clipper blade horizontally. An effective motor allows the trimmer to cut hair precisely without causing the hair to get stuck on the blade.
For those with coarse or thick hair, you’ll need a powerful motor to get the job done correctly. Otherwise, you’ll have to deal with clogs. When you find that a clipper doesn’t cut hair well, it’s probably because the motor is weak.
There are three standard clipper motors, namely:
The most common motor type is the magnetic motor because they’re the most economical choice. It consists of a spring and an electromagnet motor, which cause the blade’s vibrational movements.
Upkeep for magnetic motors is relatively low, but they’ll get clogged when trying to cut thick hair. Therefore, it is not recommended if you regularly cut African American hair. Softer hair types, however, are perfect.
Pivot motors are the next best option after magnetic motors when it comes to pricing and the ability to cut thicker hair types. The motor design is simple — multiple electromagnets propel the blade while in use. These blades are also excellent for cutting wet hair.
Lastly, a rotary motor is the best trimmer for afro-textured and curly hair. Though it is amongst the strongest motors, it’s still very quiet when operating. This motor type is one of the more durable options when selecting a fade hair clipper.
Rotary motors typically feature adjustable speed. The Renpho clipper, for example, has four-speed settings, which is convenient because it allows you to adjust the motor power to the hair type you’re cutting.
These motors also have less propensity for overheating, but they cost the most out of the three options. A rotary motor is the way to go if you want the best fade hair clipper.
Cordless or Corded
When deciding between cordless and corded, think about the setting you’ll be in and who you’re serving.
You can get a cheaper clipper that’s still powerful if you opt for a cord. You can use it indefinitely without stopping to recharge it since it’s directly connected to a power source.
If you don’t think you’ll be traveling much, or you’ll only use it at home, for the most part, the corded clipper is a cost-efficient option. In this case, you’ll want to consider how long the cord is to allow yourself as much freedom and mobility as possible.
A cordless clipper is rechargeable; the focal point here will be how much running time you get from a full charge. Also, you’ll want a clipper that has a quick charge option in case the battery is nearly dying while you’re in the middle of a cut.
This type of clipper is more convenient because you can take it anywhere without worrying about plugging it in. You’ll want a cordless clipper if you prefer to cut hair outdoors.
The battery life usually diminishes over time, and cordless clippers aren’t as powerful as corded clippers, but they’ll still get the job done effectively.
You can always go for a combo clipper which is cordless but comes with a cord to give you the option to keep going and recharge it later. The charging time is not usually one for eight hours, and a good running time is three hours of operation.
The battery type is another consideration, as a cheap clipper will use a Ni-MH battery, which takes longer to charge and eventually loses its capacity over time. Higher quality clippers have a li-ion battery; they charge faster, have a larger capacity, and will last longer.
A new clipper will also have comb attachments or guides in the package. You use them to taper the hair length when cutting fades.
There are set combs that can cut only one length, and this is usually the case with a cheaper set of clippers. You’ll need multiple guide combs that you can attach should you ever want to change the type of haircut.
There are also adjustable combs that allow the more precise cut because you can adjust them to exactly the length you want, even as low as 0.1 to one millimeter.
You can use a taper lever or wheel to adjust it, and there may be one to two extra sliding combs that come with this type of clipper. They are also more expensive than clippers with fixed combs.
You should choose the exact blades you need for the most precise cuts. If the clipper includes a blade specifically for fades, it’s better than choosing an all-in-one clipper option.
You’ll use eight trim lengths when you purchase a clipper. If you allow someone else to cut your hair, the barber may ask you what length you prefer to have your hair cut. That’s how you’ll pick the right comb guide.
The comb guides you’ll use include: 1 in, ⅞ in, ¾ in, ⅝ in, ½ in, ⅜ in, ¼ in, and ⅛ in. The instructions might also refer to them as one to eight.
If you don’t use a comb guide, then it’s because you want to shave your head bald or achieve an extremely close cut. When you purchase a clipper, ensure that you have the comb guides available.
Frequency and Voltage Rating
Two factors that often go into buying a clipper are the frequency and voltage rating.
In the United States, 60Hz is the frequency recommended for clipper use, whereas in other areas, it’s 50Hz. Since it’s possible to order a clipper online from anywhere worldwide, you must ensure that the frequency matches the power source.
The clipper’s motor will get damaged if you try to plug a 50Hz hair trimmer into a 60Hz power source. And vice versa, plugging a 60Hz motor into a 50Hz results in mediocre performance.
The concept for matching frequencies is the same for the voltage rating.
The standard voltage ratings are 120V, 220V, and 240V. You’ll damage your clippers if you use a 120V clipper with a 240V or 220V power source.
Plugging a 240V clipper into a 1w0V power source would require an exceedingly long time to charge the battery. Even if you’re using a cord, your clipper won’t work properly.
If you reside in the U.S. and purchase a 220V clipper, you must get a power-up converter with a 110V-220V rating, to be exact.
Noise isn’t a huge factor depending on how often you use the clipper. The noise may not bother you as much as those who cut their hair once a week or biweekly.
However, if you’re a professional that uses the clipper in a shop or salon, you’ll want to read the reviews to see if the device is relatively quiet. Neither you nor your clients will enjoy an overly loud buzzing noise for eight hours or more daily.
Hair Clipper Maintenance
Another critical aspect of owning a commercial clipper is to take care of the equipment to get the best performance possible from your hair trimmer. Follow these simple steps to keep your clipper in tip-top shape.
Each time you use the blades, ensure that you clean them thoroughly with the guards by using hot water.
Lay the blades and the guards out to dry once you clean them with water.
Use blade oil before and after every use. Make sure you buy some if it isn’t already included in your package.
Keep up with how often you replace the blades. The manual will tell you how long they should last. Using dull blades can be damaging to your hair or your clients. Sharp blades are the most important part of a good fade haircut.
How To Give Fade Haircuts
If you’ve ever cut hair and never quite understood how to achieve the perfect fade, here’s a comprehensive guide on how to do a fade haircut with a clipper:
Begin by washing and combing the hair to detangle it.
Make sure to trim down the hair on the top of the head to your liking. This will give you a reference point on where and how to cut your fade.
Take and connect a high-number guide comb such as a #3 or #4 and begin trimming your way down, including the sides and back. Make sure to cut away from the top of the head. Remember, the lower you move the guide comb, the lower the number will be.
After you’ve faded the hair, blend away layers to achieve a smooth, even, and seamless transition between every layer of hair.
Use a razor or trimmer to clean up the areas around the ears and neckline.
All the steps above apply even when you want to perform a skin fade on yourself.
There are some differences, such as the need for a handheld mirror, but the overall technique is the same. Ensure that you have a quality hair clipper and a pair of scissors or razors.
Pro tip: To get optimal traction, always go against the grain or the direction your hair grows.
Here are the responses to the most commonly asked questions regarding the best clippers to create a fade.
What size clippers do you use for a fade?
Most barbers use a #3 guard comb, the longest option, to create a clean fade haircut. If you’re going for a buzz cut or a precise fade, you can choose any guard size #1–#3. A #3 comb guard will leave your hair between 10mm and ⅜ inches long.
Why are fades so popular?
Fades are currently deemed to be the coolest haircut for men. It first became popular around the 1940s and 1950s among men in the U.S. military.
It’s still one of the best options for those in the military due to the strict grooming standards. Also, celebrities and musicians wear faded haircuts, making it a signature style.
How high should a fade go?
A traditional fade starts around the ears, about halfway up your head. It covers the side of the head for about one to two-thirds of the surface area, which tapers off around the eyebrow. It creates a smooth and clean look.
How do you blend fade lines?
Though there are multiple ways to achieve blending, you can use a scissor over the top of the comb for the best results to blend fade lines. Wet the hair first and angle your comb to nearly 45 degrees.
Begin to comb the hair upward for one to two inches. Take the scissors and trim any hair hanging over the comb by the fade line.
What is a zero fade?
Some men choose to get a zero fade, which is a form of a taper fade that keeps hair near the bottom of the neck. The hair is still longer near the top and gets shorter as you near the ears, but your scalp isn’t showing as it does with a standard fade.
It’s no surprise that the best clippers for fades come from the Wahl brand. The Wahl 5-Star Series Senior Clipper is a popular model with sharp blades, a durable metal body, and a long battery run time.
It’s a cordless device that comes with a cord when you need to keep moving. It’s also lightweight and compact, so you can pack it up and take it anywhere you need.
Though it costs more than some other options on the list, it more than delivers versatility, reliability, precision, and longevity.
Buy the Wahl Professional Senior Clipper today to create the perfect faded haircut. Check out the linked article for a review line up clippers you should be using.