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Clipper vs. Scissor Oil: Debunking the Myths and Making Informed Choices

Title: Clipper vs. Scissor Oil: Debunking the Myths and Making Informed Choices


Hello there, fellow hairdressers and barbers! I'm Matt Grumley, the CEO of ShearGenius, and I've been in the industry long enough to have seen my fair share of myths and misconceptions. Today, I want to address one such myth that often circulates in our profession – Clipper vs. Scissor Oil.

In the world of hairdressing and barbering, there's an abundance of information, and some of it can be quite confusing. I've heard countless debates about which oil is best for maintaining the performance and longevity of our beloved tools – clippers and scissors. Through years of experience and rigorous testing, I'd like to share some valuable insights and practical tips to help you make informed choices in your daily life as a busy professional hairdresser.

The Lack of Standards in Clipper and Scissor Oils

One of the first things we need to understand is that there are no industry-wide standards for terms like "clipper oil" and "scissor oil." This lack of standardization can lead to confusion when trying to choose the right lubricant for our tools. Fortunately, in today's world, it's relatively easy and cost-effective to send oil samples for analysis to know exactly what's in them. I've done this with various lubricants, and the results have been quite revealing.

Most of the oil marketed by well-known brands as "clipper oil" is distilled mineral oil, often with a preservative like vitamin E added. It's essential to note that this type of oil does not dissolve or soften scissor parts, and it poses no harm to people or pets with normal use. While it may lack some desirable qualities, it is undoubtedly safe and cost-effective, making it a viable option for maintaining your tools.

Interestingly, much of the so-called "scissor oil" is the exact same mineral oil found in clipper oil. This revelation may come as a surprise to many, but it's a fact worth acknowledging.

Longevity and Maintenance

Now, let's talk about the practical aspects of using clipper and scissor oils. One of the most critical factors for us as professionals is the longevity and maintenance of our tools. After all, our success often hinges on the performance of our scissors and clippers.

I've conducted extensive tests involving rubber tensioners, bumpers, and various washers stored in blade oil for over three years, and I can confidently say that all the parts remained in pristine condition. This demonstrates that the distilled mineral oil used in most clipper oils is entirely suitable for maintaining your scissors and clippers. It's a cost-effective solution that keeps your tools in top shape without any adverse effects.

The Perils of Scissor Oil

Now, let's turn our attention to scissor oil. While it's true that many products labeled as scissor oil are perfectly suitable for the task, not all of them are created equal. Some of these oils can wreak havoc on scissor parts and may end up causing more harm than good.

In our pursuit of the perfect tool maintenance solution, we sometimes encounter subpar products that can deteriorate the condition of our scissors. It's essential to be discerning when selecting scissor oil and to avoid the really bad ones. Quality matters, and not all scissor oils are created equal.

In Summary

In conclusion, it's time to dispel the myth that clipper oil is bad for scissors while the same oil with the word "scissor" on it is good. Such a belief is as unfounded as claiming that blue cars are faster than red ones. As professionals in the hairdressing and barbering industry, we should base our decisions on facts and practical knowledge rather than perpetuating baseless assumptions.

When it comes to choosing the right oil for your tools, consider the following key points:

  1. Lack of standards: Recognize that terms like "clipper oil" and "scissor oil" are not standardized, and the distinctions are often arbitrary.
  2. Safety and effectiveness: Distilled mineral oil, commonly found in clipper oils, is safe, cost-effective, and does not harm scissor parts.
  3. Scissor oil selection: Be discerning when choosing scissor oil and avoid low-quality options that can potentially damage your scissors.

Ultimately, maintaining your professional barber scissors or hairdressing scissors is crucial to your success. Proper care ensures that your tools remain sharp, precise, and reliable, allowing you to provide the best service to your clients. So, don't be swayed by industry myths – make informed decisions and keep those scissors and clippers in top-notch condition. Happy cutting!