Home » Do Clippers Damage Hair? [Explained]

Do Clippers Damage Hair? [Explained]

The Men’s Attitude is reader-supported! We might get a small commission if you purchase something after clicking our links, at no extra charge for you.

One of the most heated arguments in the men’s grooming world is if clippers cause damage to hair.

The short answer is that hair clippers can damage your hair only if their blades are dull, just like any dull tool you use to cut your hair (scissors, etc.). 

To learn more about why this is the case and what really happens to your hair when you cut it with a dull clipper, keep reading!

Why Dull Blades Are Bad News 

blunt clipper blades

When you use clippers (or any other tool) with a dull blade, you won’t be able to perform a clean and quick cut but rather tug, pull and break the hair. This damages and causes stress to the follicle, which leads to hair breakage, split ends, and even hair loss in some extreme cases. 

Why are sharp blades better than dull blades?

1. Help You Achieve Your Desired Look Easily and Quickly 

hard part round face

Having a well-functioning tool is the key to achieving any look, and when it comes to haircuts, sharp blades are the way to go. Dull blades make the task of delivering precise cuts difficult and time-consuming, no matter your skill level. Sharp blades, on the other hand, will glide through hair quickly and easily, allowing for distinct lines and clean edges—no matter what cut you’re going for. 

2. Prevent Hair Damage 

damaged hair

Investing in quality scissors or electric clippers with sharpened blades designed for cutting hair help reduce breakage and split ends while keeping your locks healthy and strong. Dull blades don’t just make haircuts more difficult but also cause damage to your own hair. In addition, worn blades can be especially damaging if you have thick hair as they tug at each strand instead of easily slicing through them as sharp blades do. Think about it—imagine trying to cut something with a dull knife versus a sharp one—it takes longer and requires more effort, meaning there’s more room for error and damage.

3. Save Time (and Money!) 

As already mentioned, when using dull tools, you need much more time to deliver a task than you should, which is why investing in sharp tools pays off in spades! The reason quality hair-cutting tools save time, and money is that you won’t need multiple passes through the same spot because of uneven cuts made by using defective or not properly maintained equipment. 

How to Tell if Your Clipper Blades Are Dull 

dirty hair clipper blades

It can be difficult to tell if your clipper blade is dull, but there are some signs you can look out for. Look for uneven cuts or snags when clipping your hair, as these indicate that the blade is not cutting correctly anymore. Another sign is that you will need more time than usual to cut through thicker hair sections—as your blades won’t be able to slide easily through them. Lastly, check for nicks or breaks in the edge of the blades, as these are signs of wear and tear on the tool. 

How to sharpen a dull clipper blade?

sharpening the blades

Maintaining your hair clipper blades is key to achieving the best cut possible. Fortunately, sharpening clipper blades is easy—all you need is water, a whetstone, and a few minutes.

  1. Start by soaking your whetstones in the water overnight.
  2. The next morning, take the whetstone out of the water and place it on a cloth towel.
  3. Slide the blade teeth across the whetstone to sharpen them. This should take only one or two minutes, as too much sharpening can damage the metal.
  4. Once completed, dry the blades with a dry cloth and oil them, and screw them to the clipper.

We have an entire article with a video on how to sharpen your clippers that you can check out here.

FAQ section

Do Clippers Thin Your Hair?

No clippers will not thin your hair. They just cut your hair follicle and do not thin it. If you experience thinning hair consider visiting a cosmetologist or a trichologist because probably the problem is not your clipper.

Can Hair Clippers Cause Baldness?

No hair clippers cannot cause baldness. Baldness (alopecia) is a  condition that many adult men battle with and in most cases is inherited. Of course, there are other reasons that can cause alopecia like certain diseases or high levels of stress, but hair clippers are not one of them.

Do Clippers Change Hair Texture?

The answer is no; hair clippers on their own cannot have an impact on texture. However, they can still be part of a lifestyle choice that results in a changed texture. For example, the frequent use of a low-grade dull clipper along with styling products that contain harsh chemicals can lead to a changed texture over time. Additionally, using barber’s scissors after trimming with clippers can alter the hairstyle and produce a different hair texture (but this happens on purpose and is not something permanent). Ultimately, while changes in hair texture may occur as part of regular styling practices involving clippers, they do not directly affect hair health.

Do Clippers Cause Split Ends?

Having split ends can be frustrating and make you want to take drastic measures, like shaving off your hair. But instead of taking those desperate steps, try looking at what condition your hair clippers are in first. If you’ve been using the same pair for a while, it might be time to switch blades or sharpen them. Dull blades cause friction when they pass through your hair, leading to split ends and heat damage – not something anyone wants! So, proper upkeep of your clippers is vital to keep split ends away.


In summary, clippers do not damage your hair unless they have a dull blade. If you think your clipper might be due for a sharpening, make sure you get it done right away so that you don’t end up causing any damage to your hair! By regularly maintaining your clippers and replacing dull blades with new ones, you can keep them working in tip-top condition for years, ensuring precise haircut and healthy hair!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *