Can You Hurt Yourself with a Trimmer?

Do you find those sharp looking blades of hair and beard trimmers scary? Is a friend’s messy experience keeping you from using one on yourself? Do you wake up in the middle of the night and think, “Is a hair trimmer safe?” OK, that was taking it a bit too far. But you get the point – stop worrying too much. The “trick” is to play by the book and it’ll guarantee you 100% safe trims ALWAYS!

Ever since stringent lockdown rules restricted people from visiting salons, hair and beard trimmers entered the unofficial list of absolute essentials for men, and continue to be there even with the world returning to normalcy. But like any DIY process, trimming one’s own hair or beard may come packaged with some possible threats and hazards. Let’s see if the fear of getting hurt with a hair trimmer is justified on the various grounds that we overheard around the watercooler.

Threat 1: “My skin will get caught in the trimmer blades and I’ll cut myself.”Status: Less likely, but possible.

How do the blades work? A hair or beard trimmer is equipped with a unique combination of blades, the bottom of which remains static, while feeding the hair to the top blade that moves back and forth in short vigorous movements, thus cutting any hair caught in between.

So, can they hurt? Technically your skin could get caught in between, hurting you in the process, but that’s where the bottom blade comes to the rescue. The bottom blade that resembles a tiny comb in shape, is designed to catch longer and thin objects, specifically with hair strands in mind. Anything that does not fall in that shape would not be caught and the trimmer will simply move past it without any harm done.

What can I do as precaution?

1. Hold the trimmer in the correct way, mostly parallel to the skin, so that the bottom blade rests flat on it. Even while shaping a beard hold it directly over the surface and trim with light strokes.

2. Use the trimmer lightly. Too much pressure will make the trimmer blade sink deeper into the skin, creating folds that can get caught in them and hurt.

3. Use them carefully around the natural folds of the skin, in short and gentle movements, like in the area around the ears.

    Threat 2: “The longer hair in my beard will get entangled in the trimmer and will be painfully plucked out.”Status: Very less likely, but possible.

    Do longer hair get entangled in the trimmer? A long beard can get stuck in the trimmer comb or blades if it is not neatly combed and is all tangled up. Remember, a trimmer is meant to cut individual strands of hair and not a bunch of them trapped together in a mess.

    So, can they hurt? If a tangled-up mass of hair gets caught in trimmer blades, the hair may get pulled instead of being chopped. This may cause a plucking sensation on the skin or may pluck the follicle entirely, causing pain.

    What can I do as precaution?

    1. Keep your beard clean and detangled by regularly shampooing and brushing it. It will not only make the whole trimming process easy but will also create a hygiene ritual to keep any deposits in the beard at bay.

    2. Use the trimmer in the direction of your beard growth.

    3. Make sure that your trimmer blades are sharp. Blunt blades will tug and pull hair which can be very painful. To avoid this, always go for a trimmer with self-sharpening blades.

      Threat 3: “I’ll electrocute myself with a trimmer.”Status: Very very less likely, but possible.

      Can a battery-operated trimmer give me an electric shock? Usually batteries in small appliances have lesser voltage capacity and even in most extreme cases can’t give you an electric shock. On the other hand, corded devices have access to the strong AC current that may act erratically in cases like when the trimmer is wet.

      So, can they hurt? No

      What can I do as precaution?

      1. Use a cordless trimmer as the remotest instance of an electric shock can be avoided when using a battery-operated device.

      2. Use a trimmer that is water-resistant. Trimmers that are resistant to water and allow rinsing are safe. Just make sure not to use them while getting charged from an AC source.

      3. Keep calm & relax.

        IN SHORT...

        Under normal circumstances a beard trimmer is absolutely safe to use and should not hurt you in any way. Just make sure of the following:

        a. Use it gently. Don't apply too much pressure on the skin while using it.

        b. Don't drop it on the floor. This may temper the alignment of the blades and cause them to move erratically.

        c. Hold it comfortably. You want to be in control of things rather than let the trimmer move in unwanted angles.

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