how to properly use beard trimmers

How to Properly Use a Beard Trimmer

So you’ve finally grown your beard. Now what? How to properly use a beard trimmer can be daunting at first. Not only are there millions of products on the market there seem to be thousands of different techniques to shave your beard. How can something that seems so simple be so confusing? 

We’re here to help you on this journey. The first step is grabbing your best beard trimmer. No matter the style, it all begins with the trimmer. As long as your beard is the desired length, then we are full steam ahead. 

The Comb

This step is essential for the beard trimming process. Brush the hair in the direction that your hair grows. They will all just about be in the same direction. This ensures uniformity when trimming. 

While you’re combing out the hair, think about the desired length and style of your hair. Seeing the hair brushed out gives you a better idea of what you want to do. It is the first step in how to properly use a beard trimmer.

Shaving The Cheek

This step is to be done as you would normally shave your cheek when doing beard upkeep. Having a nice cheek shave keeps up with the tight look of the beard. The cheek line goes from the point on the sideburn where the beard has started, to the place beneath the bottom lip, or to your mustache. Once the cheek line is visualized, shave all the scraggly hairs above that line. The next steps depend on your beard length. 

Shorter Beard

Black and white depiction of a man by the sea with a shorter beard.
Source: Unsplash

The short beard’s maintenance is all about keeping up with its style and hair stragglers. Grab your trimmer guards and set them to the larger guard which correlates to a higher number. It is not efficient on time, but it’s better than cutting off too much hair with a shorter trimmer guard. 

Make sure your beard is dry before you start. Shaping your beard is the first step before trimming the neckline. Start the trimmer under your chin, and trim along your jawbone line and work your way toward the ear with an upward sweep. You can trim either with or against the beard hair growth as long as you allow the trimmer guard to follow the contours of the face. To define the beard line, remove the trimmer guards and hold the trimmer in a vertical position with blades facing yourself. At the edge of the beard line, start with the blades lightly on the skin and motion toward the edge of the beard line to trim it. 

The classic short beard look is the stubble look. To achieve this, grab the 1 or 2 trimmer guard and hold the trimmer horizontally. If you prefer cutting against the grain or with the grain, it doesn’t matter. To get a stubble look that’s even closer, remove the trimmer guard and repeat these steps without making it look blotchy. 

The Neck

With shorter beards, the neckline is vital because it is visible, compared to the long beards. Tilt your chin up and look at the place you want the neckline to be. A good starting point is two fingers above the Adam’s apple. Have the trimmers facing towards you, and start at the neckline and shave downwards. This ensures an even neckline. Ideally, the beard will go slightly down your neck even with a short beard. 

The Long Beard

Black and white depiction of a man with a long beard ready to learn how to properly use a beard trimmer.
Source: Unsplash

The long beard is a little more complex because it requires free-hand trimming. Since it is over an inch long, there is no need for trimmer guards. This is why the combing step was so important because it reveals if the hairs are different lengths. This is a good place to start trimming to make everything symmetrical. Then from there, it’s all up to the user to shape it whether it be squared off or a different shape. The same shaping up tips apply to the short beard, but the neck can be different.

The Neck

If you’d like the same neck styling as the short beard it is a very simple process and looks nice and tight. There is another very common style to fade it out right above the Adam’s apple. This requires trimmer guards. Hold the trimmers vertically and go in an upward motion but very cautiously. Start with the longest trimmer guards and work your way down.


How to properly use a beard trimmer change from short beards to long beards. This is a very basic guide to trimming your beard. It’s the bread and butter of the trimming world. It depends on the beard length whether trimmer guards are needed, but every person with a beard should have them handy. These are very important baselines for any future beard endeavors. Put your best beard trimmers forward and happy shaving!

By Caoilinn Turner

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