Knowing how to use the different plastic clipper guards that come with an electric clipper is the key to giving yourself not just a military-style buzz cut but a stylish, tapered, clean haircut that is shaped properly for your head. The eight different clipper guards that come with most commercial electric clippers each have a specific size and indication, so get familiar with them and use them to keep you looking clean cut and in style right in the comfort of your own home.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Use the number 1 clipper for a near bald head and to trim the edges of hair, your sideburns and your facial hair. The number 1 plastic guard only gives you 1/8 inch of hair, and is as close to bald as it gets without going all the way.
Use the number 2 clipper for the shaded head look. This 1/4-inch guard gives you the look of a several-days-old beard shade, but on your head.
Use the number three guard for that round munchichi look, otherwise known as the monkey head. The number 3 clipper is only a bit longer than the number 2, at 3/8 inch, and looks almost the same on most people but is more grown out, like a round fuzzball.
Use the number 4 clipper to create a standard crew cut. This length of hair, 1/2 inch, stands up on most people, but if you do the top in number four and the sides and back in number 2 or 3, you get a standard military crew cut.
Use number 5 and 6 for tapering hair along the scalp line on the sides and back of the head. Numbers 5 and 6 have graduated lengths, where they are longer on one side than the other; the difference between them is that they are reversals of each other, convenient for switching hands and sides of the head.
Use numbers 7 and 8 to style longer hair. Numbers 7 and 8, 7/8 inch and 1 inch, respectively, are useful for giving guys short Caesar cuts and for trimming the sides of longer hair styles. At 1-inch long, most people's hair begins to lay down, so cutting the top of the hair with the number 8 usually gives you a short Caesar cut. Use the number 7 to shorten and blend the sides and back.
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