Wahl Elite Pro Haircutting Kit
Last updated date: May 8, 2019
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We looked at the top 1 Hair Clippers and dug through the reviews from 3 of the most popular review sites including New York Times Wirecutter, Top Ten Reviews, Hair Clippers Club and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Hair Clipper you should buy.
The Wahl Elite Pro delivers a smooth cut on a range of hair lengths and styles. Power output is just as consistent on this plugged-in model, with an 8-foot cord that makes it especially portable. The sturdy plastic comb guards are a plus when switching between lengths. In our analysis of 42 expert reviews, the Wahl Wahl Elite Pro Haircutting Kit placed 2nd when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
Editor's Note May 8, 2019:
Checkout The Best Hair Clippers for a detailed review of all the top hair clippers.
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From The Manufacturer
Wahl® Elite Pro™ High Performance Haircutting Kit has our most powerful & durable motor, our finest precision self-sharpening blades and SECURE-FIT™ guide combs with stainless steel attachment clips.
Overall Product Rankings
An Overview On Hair Clippers
Men’s hairstyles go in and out of favor every year. You’re going to adopt some out of choice, and some perhaps by the necessities of age or work. If you have a good hair clipper, it can tackle most of them and outlast them all.
The first distinction to make is that there’s a small but significant difference between hair clippers and hair trimmers. The former type is what we’re focused on for this guide, and they’re primarily meant for tackling longer hair — though as you’ll see, the better clippers can be pretty versatile. Hair trimmers are exclusively focused on detail work for short beards or other body hair.
All clippers have a serrated blade (or series of blades) that move back and forth behind a guard by way of an electric motor. In clippers like the Wahl Elite Pro, that motor is a magnetic or universal type. As the name implies, it uses a magnet to oscillate the blades. This method produces a lot of speed and also a lot of friction. It’s usually best for smooth hair, though blade type and sharpness can do a lot to cut through sturdier ‘dos.
On the more expensive end of the spectrum are rotary motors, which use a rotating piston whose action is then converted into a side-to-side motion for the blades. This type is a bit slower but produces more torque, making it more suitable for thicker beards or longer, wet hair. Increasingly rarer are pivot motors, which hit a spot somewhere in the middle in terms of price and performance.
Clipper blades can be made out of a variety of materials, though stainless steel is the most common. Durable and rust-resistant, it can stand up to thousands of trims. Carbon steel is a step up from stainless steel blades in terms of sharpness, though it tends to need more care to prevent corrosion. Many barbers swear by their ceramic blades, which stay cool even in high-speed clippers and retain their cutting edge longer. Their relative fragility makes them a rarer find in commercial clippers, though you can replace steel blades with ceramic in many models if desired.
You can adjust the length of your trim by way of a lever on some models that raise or lower the blade. On others, you’ll need to snap on a guard attachment. Typically, you’ll get several guards with your clipper, and while there’s no universal numbering system, you’ll typically find a length in inches or millimeters printed on them.
DYWM Fun Fact
The first electromagnetic hair clipper was patented in 1919 by Leo Wahl from a design he developed as a junior in high school. If that name sounds familiar, it’s the same Leo Wahl whose Wahl Clipper Corporation is still making successful gadgets today.
World’s fastest haircut? That record was set by hairdresser Konstantinos Koutoupis in Athens, Greece in 2017, who did a complete ‘do in 47.17 seconds. No, it wasn’t a buzzcut, and no, don’t try that at home.
The Hair Clipper Buying Guide
- The first thing you’ll need to do when buying a hair clipper is to find a tool that matches the job. Will you be periodically shaving down a crew cut or mowing a mountain-man beard? If it’s simple upkeep on short hair you’re looking for, an inexpensive model might be fine for the job — especially if you don’t need a lot of length-adjusting guards. The longer the hair, the more you may want to consider something with a high-powered motor and/or more accessories. Also, take a look at the width of the clipper. Wider clippers are great for quickly buzzing through short haircuts, but they may not be able to handle touchy areas like the ears or do detailed beard work.
- To plug or not to plug? If you plan on traveling, definitely consider a cordless clipper. If it holds a charge well, so much the better. If not, keep in mind that international trips may require a plug adapter to fit foreign outlets. For home use, some prefer corded clippers like the Wahl Elite Pro just for the consistency of their power output. Some models may slow down and therefore tug at hairs as they run out of juice. For that reason, a low battery warning light can be a real help — and a unit with a long battery life can help even more. Clippers such as the Remington Shortcut Pro offer the best of both worlds with the option to use it plugged in or cordless.
- If you’re really pressed for time in the mornings, it can be worth the extra investment to go with a wet/dry clipper. The ability to trim your beard or head in the shower can be a real help, but never assume a cordless clipper will work wet. They’ll be clearly advertised if so.
- If you’re a barber handling multiple heads of hair a day, you might be cleaning your clippers every night. If you’re just a regular person whose name isn’t Bigfoot, you can probably get away with cleaning your clipper blades every month or so. Some clippers make it easier than others. The Remington Shortcut Pro can be easily rinsed clean after every use. That helps, but it’s still good to brush off the blades periodically and remove the head so you can clean the blades with lubricating oil. Sometimes, there will be a cleaning station provided that lets you soak your blades in a solution overnight.
- Accessories can make a big difference when it comes to hair clippers. If you’ve got a layered haircut or beard to deal with, you’re going to need plenty of different guards to deal with the different lengths. The Wahl Color Pro is particularly handy in this area, providing a color-coded arsenal of guards to help you easily find the right size for your trim.