Universal clipper guards: How to choose the perfect size for precise haircuts


When it comes to grooming, finding the perfect blade length for your haircut can be as crucial as the snip of the scissors.

Enter universal clipper guards, the magical tools that grant you the power to achieve any desired hairstyle effortlessly.

From crisp buzz cuts to flowing locks, this guide unlocks the world of diverse blade lengths, ensuring your hair game is always on point.

Prepare to discover the endless possibilities that lie within these trusty allies and take control of your hair destiny.

universal clipper guards

Universal clipper guards are attachments that can be used with clippers to achieve different hair lengths.

They come in various sizes, ranging from 0 which leaves no hair on the scalp, to 8 which creates a length of 1 inch on top.

These guards are commonly used for buzz cuts, crew cuts, and tapers, allowing individuals to achieve their desired hair length and style.

Key Points:

  • Universal clipper guards are attachments used with clippers to achieve different hair lengths.
  • They come in sizes ranging from 0 (no hair on the scalp) to 8 (1 inch length on top).
  • These guards are commonly used for buzz cuts, crew cuts, and tapers.
  • They allow individuals to achieve their desired hair length and style.
  • Universal clipper guards are versatile and compatible with various types of clippers.
  • They offer convenience and ease of use for creating different hairstyles.

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Pro Tips:

1. Universal clipper guards were first invented in the early 1900s by Leo J. Wahl, the founder of Wahl Clipper Corporation. These guards were designed to provide consistent hair length while using electric hair clippers.

2. Despite the name “universal,” clipper guards are not universally compatible with all types of clippers. Depending on the brand and model, clipper guards may vary in size and design, making it essential to check compatibility before purchasing.

3. The color of universal clipper guards is not just for aesthetics. Different colors are often used to indicate the length of hair they will leave behind when used with a clipper. This color-coding system helps barbers and hairstylists easily distinguish between guards of varying lengths.

4. Universal clipper guards are not limited to hair cutting purposes. They can also be used for various grooming applications, such as trimming facial hair, shaping eyebrows, or even grooming pets. Their versatility makes them a valuable tool in many different settings.

5. In recent years, customizable clipper guards have become increasingly popular. These guards allow users to adjust the length of hair being cut by simply sliding a lever. This innovative feature ensures precision trimming and eliminates the need for carrying multiple guards of different sizes.

No Blade – Traditional “Buzz Cut”

The first clipper guard size we will discuss is the ‘No Blade’ option, also known as the traditional “Buzz Cut.” As the name suggests, this guard does not leave any hair on the scalp, resulting in a clean-shaven appearance.

While this style may seem simple, it possesses a timeless appeal and requires minimal maintenance. The traditional Buzz Cut is an excellent choice for individuals who prefer a low-maintenance haircut that suits a wide range of face shapes and hair textures.

  • The ‘No Blade’ option, also known as the traditional Buzz Cut, leaves no hair on the scalp.
  • It provides a clean-shaven appearance.
  • The style has a timeless appeal.
  • It requires minimal maintenance.
  • Suitable for a wide range of face shapes and hair textures.

⅛ Inch – Buzz Cut With Scalp Showing

Moving up the ladder of clipper guard sizes, we arrive at the ‘⅛ Inch’ guard. This guard leaves the hair 1/8 of an inch long, creating a slightly longer length compared to the traditional Buzz Cut. With this size, a small amount of scalp is visible, giving the haircut a subtly edgier look. The Buzz Cut with scalp showing is popular among individuals who seek a bit more texture and dimension in their hairstyle while maintaining a relatively short and simple appearance.

¼ Inch – Buzz Cut With Less Scalp Exposure

Stepping up to the ¼ Inch guard, we find a length that is twice as long as the previous option. This guard offers a buzz cut with less scalp exposure, resulting in a fuller and slightly more substantial look. The ¼ Inch Buzz Cut is an excellent choice for those who want to maintain shorter hair while enjoying a slightly softer and less aggressive appearance. This size works well on most hair types and can be easily maintained with regular trims.

⅜ Inch – Last Guard For Short/Buzz Cut Look

The ⅜ Inch guard is generally regarded as the final step to achieve a short or buzz cut look. This size provides a noticeable increase in length compared to previous options, resulting in a bit more volume and coverage for the hair. The ⅜ Inch guard is perfect for those who want a short and neat hairstyle while still having enough hair for some styling versatility. It is particularly useful for creating distinct lines or fading effects when combined with other clipper guard sizes.

½ Inch – Closer to Crew Cut

Now we arrive at the ‘½ Inch’ guard, which brings us closer to the versatile and classic crew cut. This size leaves the hair half an inch in length and offers a slightly longer and more textured appearance. The ½ Inch guard is an excellent option for individuals who prefer a semi-short hairstyle with enough length to experiment with different styling techniques. The crew cut, famous for its versatility and timeless charm, is achievable with this guard and is suitable for most face shapes.

⅝ Inch – Used in Taper, Closer to Crew Cut

Moving forward, we come across the ‘⅝ Inch’ guard, which is commonly used in tapering techniques to achieve a smooth and gradual transition in hair length. Unlike the crew cut, this guard size offers a bit more length and volume, making it ideal for those who want to maintain a relatively short and manageable hairstyle with a fade or taper effect.

The ⅝ Inch guard provides enough hair to experiment with different styling options, allowing individuals to get creative with their looks.

  • Key points:
  • ‘⅝ Inch’ guard used for tapering techniques
  • Creates a gradual transition in hair length
  • Offers a touch more length and volume compared to a crew cut
  • Ideal for those desiring a fade or taper effect
  • Provides enough hair for various styling options

The ‘⅝ Inch’ guard is perfect for achieving a stylish and versatile haircut that strikes a balance between shortness and manageability.

¾ Inch – Used in Taper and Enough Hair for Styling

Next on our list is the ‘¾ Inch’ guard, commonly used for tapering techniques and styling purposes. With a length of ¾ of an inch, this guard offers more coverage and a fuller appearance. The ¾ Inch guard is ideal for individuals seeking a versatile haircut that allows for different styling possibilities, while still maintaining a semi-short length. This guard is suitable for those who prefer a textured and casual look, and its versatility permits effortless transitions between more formal and casual occasions.

⅞ Inch – Great For Taper and Styling

Moving closer to longer hairstyles, we arrive at the ‘⅞ Inch’ guard. This size is great for achieving a taper effect while still preserving a significant amount of length. The ⅞ Inch guard provides ample coverage and creates a fuller look, making it an appealing choice for individuals with a preference for medium-length hairstyles. With this guard, various styling options become available, allowing for easy adaptation to different occasions and personal preferences.

1 Inch – Create Length on Top

The ‘1 Inch’ guard on the universal clipper guard scale is the largest size available. It is designed to create length on the top of the head while maintaining a shorter look on the sides and back. With ample coverage and enough hair to experiment with, this guard allows for creativity and personal expression. It is perfect for achieving diverse hairstyles such as a textured look, a sleek comb-over, or a neatly styled pompadour.

  • The ‘1 Inch’ guard is the largest size on the universal clipper guard scale.
  • It creates length on the top while keeping the sides and back shorter.
  • Ample coverage and enough hair for experimenting with diverse hairstyles.
  • Perfect for achieving a textured look, a sleek comb-over, or a neatly styled pompadour.

Universal Clipper Guards For Customizable Haircuts

Universal clipper guards are a great tool for achieving precise and customizable haircuts. They come in a range of sizes, offering options for various styles from the traditional Buzz Cut to the crew cut and more. It is important for hairstylists and individuals seeking specific haircuts to understand the different guard sizes and their effects on the final result. By selecting the perfect clipper guard size, you can ensure that your hairstyle reflects your personality and maintains a professional and polished appearance.

Here are some key points to remember about universal clipper guards:

  • They offer a range of sizes for precise haircuts.
  • Each guard size has its own unique characteristics and styling options.
  • Understanding the different guard sizes is essential for achieving the desired hairstyle.
  • Selecting the right clipper guard size helps in reflecting your personality and maintaining a professional appearance.

So, whether you are a hairstylist or an individual looking for a specific haircut, make sure to choose the appropriate clipper guard size to achieve the desired result.

“By selecting the perfect clipper guard size, you can ensure that the hairstyle reflects your personality while maintaining a professional and polished appearance.”


You may need to know these questions about universal clipper guards

Are clipper guards universal?

While attachment combs are typically designed to be compatible with the specific blade design of your clipper, there are universal attachment combs available that can work with certain other brands of clippers. These universal attachment combs are designed to fit a variety of clipper models, providing a convenient option for those who may have different types of clippers on hand. However, it is important to note that not all attachment combs are universal, so it is advisable to check the compatibility before making any purchase.

How do I know which Clipper guard to use?

To determine which Clipper guard to use, it’s essential to understand that the number on the guard corresponds to the length of the hair it will leave. The lower the number, the shorter the hair will be. This information is particularly useful when requesting a fade, as using specific guard numbers can achieve seamless transitions in hair length. By knowing exactly which numbers you’d like to fade from and into, you’ll impress your barber and ensure a precise and tailored haircut.

Are all hair clipper guards the same?

No, all hair clipper guards are not the same. While they follow a standard numbering system, each guard is designed to cut hair to a different length. Higher number guards will give you a longer cut, while lower number guards will provide a shorter cut. This allows for versatility in styling and enables individuals to achieve their desired hair length. It is important to choose the right guard based on the desired length to achieve the best results.

What does a 2 guard haircut look like?

A 2 guard haircut is characterized by hair that is cut using a number two clipper guard, resulting in a length of approximately a quarter of an inch. This length allows for a short and neat appearance, while still keeping the scalp hidden. It is a versatile haircut that can be used for buzz cuts or fades, providing a clean and polished look without completely exposing the scalp like shorter cuts do.

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