Beard trimmers use rechargable battery power, but not all are created equal. With some of the less powerful trimmers, you need to charge for 10 hours for 35 minutes of use. Others trimmers, especially ones that use Lithium-ion batteries, can give you nearly an hour on only an hour-charge. Some beard trimmers also have a quick-charge option, where you can set the trimmer in the charging base for 60 seconds or so and get one shave. This is convenient if you’re in a hurry and don’t need your trimmer to be fully juiced. It is common for beard trimmers to also have have corded power capabilities, or even the ability to charge as a USB.
In order to be effective at trimming your hair, the blades on your trimmer need to be sharp and durable. Stainless steel and titanium-coated metal blades are great, and are frequently made to be self-sharpening so they don’t need to be oiled. For long blade life, precision ground blades are known to stay sharper longer than stamped blades. Blades with a certain shape, like wave-blades, and blades designed at an angle (45-degree) are especially effective at trimming facial hair.
To enjoy a smooth, painless shave, features a like flexing guide comb or contour follow comb help you maintain total control over the trimmer. These combs literally “guide” the trimmer blades over the contours of your face and help keep the hair in place for easy cutting, even when you’re going over tricky areas like your jawline and neck.
Beard trimmers frequently come with grooming attachments like a hair clipper comb, mini shaver, mustache trimmer, precision trimmer, stubble comb, and so on. These attachments allow you to trim and style every area of your face and body. Typically, these attachments come in the form of different shaving heads, so you just pop the head in when you want to focus on one area or style. Each attachment is designed for a specific purpose, so you can use a goatee trimmer’s precision detail blades to cut very fine lines, or a beard trimmer that has wide teeth for cutting through thicker hair. Depending on the brand and price, you can get a beard trimmer with as many as four attachments for an all-in-one shaving experience.
Whether you’re using a standard beard trimmer or one of the attachments like a beard/mustache comb, you have the power to choose the length setting you want. Many trimmers use an adjustable dial or zoom lock wheel that you turn to the selection you want, which then locks, so you get a perfect, consistent trim. Some trimmers have 9 settings, while others can have as many as 18 that go from 1/32-inch to 23/32 inches. If your trimmer has attachable heads, they’ll typically have the same number of length selections, i.e. six settings for the beard comb and six for the hair comb. The more selections you get, the more precise you can be about your facial hair style, though unless you have a very particular idea about what length you want, you probably don’t need as many as 18 settings.
Most beard trimmers come with easy-cleaning features and are washable, so you just run the trimmer under water to clean out the hair. Some beard trimmers even have sealed bodies, so you don’t have to worry about water or grime getting trapped inside the trimmer. The hair just slides off the blades when you run it under the tap.