Last updated: 16/10/2022

Nail clippers are one of the most useful items in our personal care routine. This is because excessively large nails can cause harm to health, accumulating bacteria or ingrown, for example. They are super simple and practical items, but that should be chosen carefully if you want them to be durable and quality. Therefore, we have brought you the best information, advantages and criteria to be observed when buying a perfect nail clipper.


  • Nail clippers should always have their blades ground to ensure an optimal cut.
  • If you want a really durable cutter, always opt for stainless steel models.

The best Nail Cutter: Our Picks

Buying Guide

Choosing the perfect nail clipper for you may seem like a simple decision, but if you want your nails to be well cared for and don’t want to spend money for nothing, this item should be chosen paying attention to several aspects. To help you with this task, we have prepared a special guide where you will find all the information to buy the ideal nail cutter for what you need. Check it out below.

Mulher cortando a unha de bebê.

Nail clippers are useful accessories since the first months of a person’s life. (Source: stylephotographs / 123RF)

Nail clippers: What are they and when did they come into being?

Nail clippers or nail trimmers are simple devices used to cut toenails and fingernails. Usually, the object is made of stainless steel, but there are aluminium and plastic variations of the device available on the market. There is no definitive information on who invented the first nail clipper, but it is definitely one of the oldest tools in history. Since the dawn of mankind, primitive men have used sharp items to cut their nails. However, the clipper as we know it today was not popularised until the mid-1940s. Since then, they have become a very present item in the hygiene routine of the whole world. This is because they are practical, easy to transport and very simple to use. Nowadays, they are one of men’s favourite personal care objects, however, women also use them a lot.

Nail clippers: How do they work?

The nail clipper is an easy-to-handle tool that can be used with ease by adults and children. Typically, a nail clipper has three main parts:

  • Two cutting clamps
  • Axis
  • Lever

However, it is possible to find nail clippers with more features for sale in the market. The most common versions may contain a penknife or a nail file attached. Nail clippers are very handy and can easily be carried everywhere. To use the clipper, there is not much mystery. You will basically have to push the lever, which will consequently cause the upper blade of the clipper to move towards the lower blade, which will create a cutting motion.

Imagem de três cortadores de unha enfileirados.

The most common versions of mowers may have some attachments attached. (Source: saulhm / Pixabay)

Nail clippers or manicure scissors?

Experts in the field of podiatry guarantee that no matter which one you choose, it will be possible to cut your nails without major problems. Both are perfectly suited for cutting nails without causing injury. However, the difference between the two is that cutting with the clippers is much easier. However, it is necessary to check whether the width and the opening of the cutter are adjusted according to your needs. So if you have wide nails, choose a cutter that is wider and has a good opening. Now, when it comes to cutting smaller nails, a wide clipper can be trickier to use. Therefore, scissors are a great alternative, as they are able to cut even the smallest nails with more precision and control. The manicure scissors have the advantage of making deeper cuts and are perfect for adjusting crooked nails. In addition they have the ability to cut in curves, if necessary.

Nail clipper Manicure scissors
Cut Provides straight cuts Performs straight and curved cuts
Use They are easy to use Precision is required
Type of nail They should be suitable for the size of the nail They are suitable for all nails

Purchase criteria: Factors to compare nail clipper models

It can be tempting to buy the first nail clipper you find in a pharmacy near your home. However, this may not be the best option. You could end up wasting a lot of money by having to buy a clipper every time you cut your nails. If you want to buy an ideal clipper amidst so many different products, it is important to pay attention to a few criteria before deciding which nail clipper is perfect for you.

  • Material
  • Tension
  • Blades
  • Features

Below we will detail each of these items, so you can choose the best nail cutter for your needs.


The most important thing you should consider before buying a nail clipper is to determine what material it is made of. This is because the material of the clipper greatly affects when it comes to cutting nails with ease, as well as the durability of the product. If it is made of steel, for example, you will have a great advantage because the cut of your cutter will be better and the durability will be quite long. Now, if you opt for an aluminium cutter, the chances are that it will get old soon or break more easily.


Another factor to consider when choosing a nail clipper is the tension of the lever. It should not be too loose or too tight, as this will affect the ease with which you cut your nails. Also, you need to know if the tension is enough to completely close the cutting clamps. Otherwise, the nail cut will become incorrect or even not work at all, leaving the cutter useless.


Finally, check that the cutting blades are straight. If they are not, do not buy it, as this way the clippers will not perform the cut in the correct way. If this happens after you buy the cutter, ask a person who specializes in cutters and pliers to rectify them, this will keep it sharp and continue cutting well. If you want to do it yourself, check out the following video to learn the process in detail.


Not every nail cutter has only the function of cutting nails. Many of them add several extra devices that make them even more practical and useful in everyday life. Therefore, one factor to observe is whether your clippers have extra functionalities such as a nail file or a pocket knife, which can be very practical. (Source of the highlighted image: saulhm / Pixabay)