Difference Between Trimmer, Shaver, Groomer, Clipper, Epilator and Razor


Are you looking to understand what is the difference between a trimmer and a shaver? Or the difference between a shaver and clipper? Or the difference between shavers, trimmers, clippers, and a bazillion other products?

There are many hair removal devices available. If you have hair on a body part, then there is probably a device that can help you remove the hair there.

Hair trimmers and hair removers are classified into 2 basic categories.

  • Electric Hair Removers
  • Mechanical Hair Removers

Jump to a topic using this index or read on.


Trimmers are devices that “trim” your hair. Trimmers consist of 2 or more sliding blades that are used to trim the hair. When your hair is passed through the blades, they are cut.

Philips Trimmer difference between trimmer and shaver
Example of Trimmer Blades

Most trimmers are small and have a small cutting width. Due to the small width and size, trimmers are precise in cutting hair. That is why trimmers are preferred to style facial hair, as they can be used in multiple ways. But, trimmers are not limited to just cutting facial hair. There are different types of trimmers designed for a variety of uses.

Types of Trimmers

Different texture of hair requires different types of trimming blades to be effective. That is why a trimmer designed for the face cannot and should not be used on any other parts of the body.

In India, face trimmers are also called as ‘zero machines’. We don’t know how the term originated, but the word zero means ‘near zero-length’, which means a trimmer that can almost like a shaver. So if a person is asking for a zero machine, he is looking for a trimmer.

Here are the types of trimmers that you should know about.

1. Hair Trimmers

Hair trimmers are General-purpose trimmers that can be used on many parts of the body. However, it is not recommended to use them. The skin and the hair texture is vastly different on the different parts of the body, and using a trimmer designed for one skin and hair type can be damaging to other parts of your body.

2. Beard Trimmers

As the name says, beard trimmers are made specifically for trimming your beard. Whether you maintain a nice thick beard, a stubble, or a Viking beard, a beard trimmer is all you need.

Beard trimmers themselves are of varying types. Some need to be powered in; some can operate on battery.  Some are super precise; some are average. Since there are many types of trimmers available, choosing the right one can be tricky. That is why we created a Philips Trimmer Comparison. You can understand and compare the different features of Philips’s beard trimmers in that post. We are soon going to create posts comparing other brands of trimmers as well.

3. Ear and Nose Trimmers

The skin inside the nostrils and the skin on our ears are very sensitive, that is why you need specialty trimmers, namely an ear and nose hair trimmer to trim the hair in those areas.

ear trimmer use case

4.Bikini Trimmer

Bikini trimmers are trimmers designed for sensitive areas like the groin and underarms. These are marketed largely to women, hence the name, bikini trimmers. Many women prefer to use hair removal creams in these regions, but using trimmers is much safer as it prevents any allergic reactions.


Shavers are devices that shave the face. Unlike trimmers, shavers take 100% hair off the face. Here is an image showing the difference between a shaver and a trimmer.

trimmer look vs shaver look

Since shavers get you a clean look, the blades have to come in contact with your skin one way or another. Over time, this can lead to skin hardening, and some people also feel skin irritation when they first start using electric shavers.

Shavers are of different types. They can be classified as rotatory shavers or foil shavers. Each of these types can be classified as wet shavers or dry shavers. As the name suggests, wet shavers can be used wet, i.e., with shaving cream or foam. Dry shavers, on the other hand, have t be used dry, without any foam, cream, or lubrication.

rotatory shaver vs foil shaver

Dry shavers can be hard to get used to, and many people never get used to it. So, if you’re planning to buy a shaver for the first time, we recommend that you go with a wet shaver instead of a dry shaver.

If you have trouble choosing a shaver, you can refer to our guide on the best electric shaver in India.


Groomers are similar to hair clippers, but they are specifically designed to cut hair on the body. For men, groomers can be used to trim the hair on the chest, abdomen, armpits, or the groin area. Groomers usually have non-adjustable heads and use a single head to trim the hair. Many groomers also come with length settings, which can help you maintain hair length on your body if you desire.

where you can use groomers on the body


Clippers are similar to trimmers, but they are designed to cut large chunks of hair quickly. These would be used by hairdressers when they are cutting long hair for a customer. These clippers can also be used by people who maintain very short hair and cut it themselves.

hair clipper in action
Example of hair clipper in action

Pet Clippers

Some companies make trimmers/clippers specifically for pet hair. Since their hair is very different in texture and volume than human hair, it is important that you use a clipper designed specifically for them.


Epilators are devices that made for women that don’t cut the hair but uproot the hair directly from the skin. Their surface is made of tiny tweezers, which uproot the hair and leaving hair-free skin.

epliators remove the hair from the root

Since epilators directly uproot the hair, there is some degree of pain involved. Most companies would advise using a soothing lotion to reduce the pain. Epilators provide an alternative to waxing, which is an old and popular method of removing hair from the skin.

The results from epilators are impressive. The skin becomes smooth, and there is very little sign of hair after use. The hair growth is also slow when using epilators.


The old trusted razors are mechanical devices used specifically for shaving. Razors use blades which cut very close to the skin to shave the hair and achieve a smooth looking skin. Using a lubricant while shaving is highly recommended. The overall results from using a razor will depend on the skin of the person, the razor used, and the technique of the person who is shaving.

example of straight razor
a picture of a straight razor

Difference Between Trimmer and Shaver

Some people might still not understand what the difference between a trimmer and shaver is since both are used to trim or shave the hair on the face most of the time.

To explain the difference simply, trimmers help you cut or maintain a beard while a shaver will help only get a clean shave.

So if you like keeping a 3-day beard or like a 1 mm beard on you most of the time, then you would buy a trimmer.

But if you are one who always keeps a clean shave, then you would buy a shaver.

Here is the difference between shavers and trimmers explained visually.

trimmer look vs shaver look


Multi Groom Kits

Since most men and women need a combination of trimmers, shavers, and groomers, some companies create another category of grooming and personal care products called Multi-Groom Kits.

These are electrical products with a single motor, but with multiple changeable heads. Each head provides different functionality, and therefore, fulfills a different purpose.

The benefits of multi-groom kits are obvious. They cost less, are easy to carry, and you have to manage only a single device instead of multiple devices. The downside is that they aren’t usually great at all the functionalities that they offer. Think of it as a choice between a specialist vs. a jack of all trades. The specialist is great at one thing, but the generalist is acceptable at many.

a picture of a multi groom kit


We hope that we could clarify what the difference between a trimmer, shaver, epilator, clipper, and other devices are.

Remember to check out our posts on the comparison of Philips Trimmers and the comparison of Philips shavers to select an appropriate device for you.

If you still have questions or doubts, leave a comment below, and we will answer your query.

53 thoughts on “Difference Between Trimmer, Shaver, Groomer, Clipper, Epilator and Razor”

  1. Hi Admin, I really like your article because this article is very informative & well descriptive. keep continue your writing.

  2. Hi,
    Is there a grooming kit which has shaver (clean facial shave) as well, along with other grooming attachments for full body?

    1. Unfortunately no. Shavers only come with a small brush like attachment which is only used for defining your hairline. A full body grooming kit is only bundled with a trimmer, which won’t give you a squeaky clean shave.

    1. Javed, if you trim only chest hair, then buy a trimmer. You can then use it on your face and chest. If you plan to use it on other body areas as well, then buy a groomer.

      Hope that was clear.

  3. I want to remove or tim my hairs on chest and back ,Which product do you recommend to by – should i buy BG 1025 from philips?

    1. Paresh,

      BG 1025 is great for chest hair, but for back hair you will need to ask some-one to trim the hair for you.
      Apart from that, it’s a great choice.

  4. I have excessive hair on my leg, will a groomer be good for hair on legs ?? Earlier used a trimmer on my legs but it hardened the hair furthur should I expect the same results from a body groomer as well.

    1. Hey Mukul, you can go for a body groomer without worry.

      Trimmers are meant for harder hair and are harsh on sensitive areas. A body grommer is designed to be soft and gentle. Using groomer will not make the hair hard as well.

  5. Hi, I am using trimmer on my beard, going against the grim on zero but it is causing skin problems, should I switch to electric shavers?

    1. Syed, skin problems can be because of multiple reasons, trimming being one of them. You should try to shave with a regular shaver to see if the problem stops. If it persists, please consult a dermatologist.

    1. No Sadik. Using a beard trimmer on sensitive areas in not recommended. Please use a body groomer or use an all in one kit which has a body groomer attachment.

  6. What a great post ….

    I am interested to buy a bikini trimmer. I have been searching for chose the perfect bikini trimmer, but i can not found the right one. This post help me to find out the perfect one. This is very nice post and also helpful for us. Some days ago, i read an article to chose perfect bikini trimmer, but i have a confusion which one is perfect.

    1. Rajiv, if he shaves, then a shaver will be better, obviously. If he occasionally trims, then you can give him a hybrid device like the Philips OneBlade.

  7. Ok, thanks, the way of clarification very nice.
    I understand and I got the information that, what I want.
    Thanks again

  8. Bhaskar Paggala

    Useful information for all and your explanation is very good. Can you suggest which model (Phillips) is the best to cut hair for me and my kids.

    1. Thank you Bhaskar. Any clipper should be fine, but a scissor and comb will give you better precision. With a trimmer, you might end up trimming off more than you’d like. 🙂

  9. Nice article bro. Btw, my friends use Phillips trimmer of range 0.5mm – 10mm and get almost full clean shave with the 0.5mm. Some use the Phillips BT 3101/15 and Phillips 3203/15.

  10. Hi mate, very informative article you have written. I have a question if you can reply.. Can I use Kemei KM-6332 for removing hair from my pubic area.

  11. Hey Bro,

    Thanks for the information.

    I have a question: I like very clean shave of my beard with no feeling of hair when I touch my beard after shaving. Shavers give me bumps. What do you recommend, trimmers or what?. Any suggestions of which product, brand or model to try?


  12. Iam intrested to buy a grooming kit for low cost, which is best.? BPL men’s 10 in 1 grooming kit cost is 1000, but it shows shaver type is foil, which means? philips multiple grooming cost is 4000 which is high cost? which is best?

  13. hey im a bit confused b/w MG7715/65 and MG3760/33
    also im confused what a precision shaver. i dont really need to shave my body hair i just need to trim it and i got a razor for beard. so should i go for a multikit and save some money cus i’d be needing the other heads after a while or should i just get a body trimmer??

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