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Best fading clippers for stylish cuts

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Which are the best hair clippers for fades?

Fade haircuts are among the most fashionable styles today. If you’re a barber or want to give yourself a cut, you need to have the skills to produce a top-quality fade base, but you should also have quality hair clippers to do so.

The best fading clippers make it easier for you to produce crisp, clean-looking fades. It’s a good idea to invest in a high-end machine that delivers elite cordless performance and power.

Shop this article: Wahl Professional 5-Star Cordless Magic ClipWahl Clipper Fade Cut Haircutting Kit and Wahl Color Pro Complete Haircutting Kit Corded Clipper

What to know before you buy hair clippers for fades


The best hair clippers will feature one of three motor types: rotary, magnetic or pivot.

  • Rotary motors: Hair clippers with rotary motors are light, but they’re also powerful and deliver an equal amount of blade speed and power, making them the most versatile.
  • Magnetic motors: These have fast-moving blades and smooth cuts on fine hair, so they are popular for home or personal use.
  • Pivot motors: They're ideal for coarse or thick hair since they offer more power but slower blade speed.


Hair-cutting tools should always have sharp blades. Dull blades require more effort to cut hair, resulting in uneven or low-quality cuts.

The most common blade material is steel, which is sharp and requires no maintenance. High-end fading hair clippers feature carbon or titanium blades, which are self-sharpening and more durable. You can also find clippers with sharp ceramic blades, but these kinds of blades require some maintenance since they’re more fragile.


If you get a haircut with clippers, you should know the number of your cut. Numbers go from 1 to 8 and correspond with the desired hair length in inches:

1. 1/8 inch

2. 1/4 inch

3. 3/8 inch

4. 1/2 inch

5. 5/8 inch

6. 3/4 inch

7. 7/8 inch

8. 1 inch

So, for example, if you tell a barber you’d like a 1 to 4 fade, the lowest part of your fade will be 1/8 inch, and the highest will be 1/2 inch.

What to look for in quality clippers for hair fades

Guide combs

Fading hair clippers come with several guide combs for precision cutting. Comb guides are simple plastic connections that are easy to use and attach directly to the blade. Most hair clippers will come with anywhere from 5 to 10 plastic guides. The more guide combs in a hair clipper set, the easier it’ll be to achieve the desired hair length of a fade.

Corded vs. cordless

Many hair clippers only work if connected to a power outlet via a power adapter cord, but some have rechargeable batteries for use without cords. Cordless hair clippers usually offer 1 to 2 hours of efficient performance and are great for traveling and convenient for self-touch-ups. However, some cordless clippers don’t offer as much power as corded ones, so they’re a less popular option for professional use.


Some hair clippers come with just a few guide levels, but more comprehensive kits come with several accessories. The most common ones you’ll find in a fading hair clipper kit include blade maintenance oil, cleaning brushes, clips, scissors and travel cases.

How much you can expect to spend on hair clippers for fades

You can get decent-quality hair clippers for about $30 to $50, but if you’re looking for a complete kit with all the bells and whistles in terms of accessories and quality, they can cost anywhere from $60 to $150.

Hair clippers FAQ

Is it necessary to oil the blades?

A. No, but it does minimize friction and allow for a smoother cut since the blades will snag or pull at the hair less often.

Can hair clippers for fading be used for trimming beards?

A. Some hair clippers are designed to function as two-in-one machines and can effectively trim beard hair, but most hair clippers are designed to cut and fade hair on the top and sides of the head.

Best fading clippers

Top hair clippers for fades

Wahl Professional 5-Star Cordless Magic Clip

What you need to know: These professional hair clippers are excellent for fades and ideal for those seeking convenience and professional-grade results.

What you’ll love: The Wahl hair clippers sport patented stagger-tooth blades, which give seamless blends for both hard and soft fades. They come with eight comb guide attachments and a taper lever and offer superior speed for high-precision fades. They're cordless and last up to 90 minutes on a full charge.

What you should consider: Some customers find the plastic taper lever to be of inferior quality.

Top hair clippers for fades for the money

Wahl Clipper Fade Cut Haircutting Kit

What you need to know: This is the perfect kit for those who want to keep their budget low but still get high-quality fading clippers and accessories.

What you’ll love: These clippers have a powerful but quiet motor, self-sharpening blades and a gentle blade angle that provides smoother cuts and fades. There’s an adjustable taper level, and the kit comes with 10 comb guides ranging from 1/16 of an inch to 1 inch.

What you should consider: They get extremely hot after only one to 15 minutes of continuous use.

Worth checking out

Wahl Color Pro Complete Haircutting Kit Corded Clipper

What you need to know: This all-in-one haircut kit contains color-coded combs corresponding with different lengths and styles. With the included accessories, it can also be used as a nose hair, ear hair, eyebrow and beard trimmer.

What you’ll love: These clippers have self-sharpening blades, guide combs for cutting between 1/16 of an inch to 1 inch, left and right ear tapers, eyebrow trim combs, hair clips, various styling combs and more.

What you should consider: These professional-grade clippers have a corded design, meaning they're more powerful than cordless alternatives, but offer limited mobility in comparison.

Fade King All Metal Quiet Motor Hair Clippers

What you need to know: This kit is worth your attention if you want hair clippers and trimmer functionality in one device. It can be used for grooming both head hair and beard hair.

What you’ll love: These hair clippers operate quietly but are powerful enough to cut through coarse hair without any tugging. They feature both corded and cordless functionality and last up to five hours on a full charge. The LED display indicates how much battery power remains.

What you should consider: It cuts well, but it takes some effort to “catch hair,” meaning some areas may have to be run over several times to achieve the desired fade.

Prices listed reflect time and date of publication and are subject to change.

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