Every barber out there relies on their favourite hair clippers and trimmers to achieve the absolute best for their clients.
So, it’s important to give your clippers the right level of care and maintenance to ensure they do their job as well as you do.
For this week’s blog, we’ve put together a complete guide to caring and cleaning you barber clippers…
Why Is It So Important to Clean & Care For Barber Clippers Properly?
There are a few reasons why proper clipper maintenance is essential when you are a barber:
- To maintain proper hygiene
- To ensure they last as long as possible
- To achieve the best possible results for your clients
Dirty clippers can cause you all kinds of problems. Not only is it highly unhygienic to not clean them, but all that build-up of hair, skin and oils can cause damage over time – meaning your clippers need replacing more often and might even injure a client.
What is the Best Way to Clean Hair Clippers?
As a barber, you will probably find yourself cleaning your clippers at least several times a day.
For the best way to clean your clippers, follow these steps:
- If your clippers are mains operated, unplug them and disconnect the power cable
- Remove any attachments you’ve been using
- Using a cleaning brush, dislodge as much hair and debris from your clippers as possible
- Use an anti-bacterial clipper spray to clear any remaining bits of hair away and prevent cross-contamination
- Leave the spray on for as long as is stated on the can before wiping clean
- Place any plastic comb or tapering attachments in a jar of disinfectant and leave for as long as required before using them again on your next client
At the end of your working day or week, you might also want to give your clippers a deep clean.
To do this, use a screwdriver to remove the clipper blade completely. Again, give everything a good brush before screwing it back in place.
Next, fill a shallow bowl with some blade care solution or liquid disinfectant. With the clipper running, dip the tip of the blade in and allow it to clean for a few seconds before taking it out and giving it a wipe with a clean towel.
Remember not to use water to clean your clippers – this could cause them to rust.
Can I use rubbing alcohol to clean my clippers?
The best way to clean barber clippers is with a professional clipper spray. This is because the aerosol helps to loosen any remaining hairs, while the formula is designed to help prevent rust and cool the blades while disinfecting.
However, if you are caught out without any clipper spray, you could use rubbing alcohol as an alternative.
After unplugging, removing any attachments and brushing the trimmer, hold your clipper over the sink. Take a small cup of isopropyl alcohol and carefully pour it over the teeth, ensuring that it doesn’t enter the electrical compartment of the clipper. Wipe them dry with a soft towel before using them.
How often should clipper blades be cleaned?
You should be cleaning your clipper blades with clipper spray between every client you have.
How Often Should You Oil Your Clippers?
After sanitising and disinfecting your hair clippers, keeping them properly oiled is your next main task! It’s best to oil your clippers every time you use them.
What kind of oil do you use for hair clippers?
It’s highly advised that you use specialist clipper oil such as Wahl Clipper Oil, which is formulated to prolong the life of your clipper and trimmer blades for as long as possible. Any other type of oil might damage your clippers by clogging them up.
Related: Discover Wahl: Brand Q&A
Don’t be tempted to use an alternative like WD-40 on your clippers – it will be too thick! Heavy oils like this can clog up the mechanism and don’t provide enough lubrication. Plus, you need an oil that can withstand the high temperatures your blades can reach after a busy day in your barber shop.
To apply the oil, you usually apply 3 drops across the top blade and a couple at the rear corners of the blade, ensuring it doesn’t enter the electrical compartment. Apply the oil while the clippers are running to allow it to distribute itself properly.
What happens if you don’t oil your clippers?
When in use, you clippers produce a lot of friction. The heat this produces can damage them if oil is not used to keep them well lubricated. You will likely hear them rattle and the blades won’t cut as smoothly as they should – eventually, they might even seize up completely.
What’s more, oil stops your clippers from rusting, helping they stay sharper for longer. If your clippers become damaged as a result of not oiling them properly, it’s also likely your manufacturer won’t cover them with your warranty.
How to Align Your Barber Clippers
If you have had to take your clippers apart when cleaning or oiling them, you’ll need to check the blades are properly aligned when you put them back together.
Each clipper manufacturer will likely have their own instructions on how to best align your barber clippers. Generally, though, the top and bottom blades should be aligned together, sometimes with the top blade ever so slightly hanging over the bottom.
You also need to check they run parallel to each other, too. If they are crooked, your client might get a nasty nip on their neck!
To align your clippers, follow these steps:
- Loosen the screws holding the blades in place. Do this just enough so you can move the blades – don’t unscrew them completely
- With the lever in the closed position, carefully adjust the blades so they are back in the correct alignment
- Once you have them how you want them, tighten each screw a little at a time, ensuring the blades keep their position as you go
How Long Do Hair Clippers Last?
If you look after your hair clippers properly, they should last you many years to come! This means that you should regularly:
- Spray your barber clippers with clipper spray throughout the day
- Give your clippers a regular deep clean to remove all debris
- Oil your clippers every time you use them with a suitable clipper oil
- Always check the blades are correctly aligned
If you don’t follow these clipper maintenance steps, you might find your clippers get dull, pull on the hair, make a rattling noise and don’t produce the smooth finish you expect – so take care of them, and they will take care of your clients in return!
If you need any new barber supplies shop online with Salons Direct for an excellent range today.
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