Quiet hair clippers for one year old
September 7, 2011 2:45 AM   Subscribe

What's the best quiet set of hair clippers for cutting a one-year-old's hair?

I've given my son a haircut twice since he's been born, and both times he's been terrified of the hair clippers I use; a ConAir Cleanhead HG300, the same one I use on my head. I feel like it's relatively quiet, but apparently the noise scares him, and he starts crying way before I'm done cutting his hair.
Do you have any recommendations - especially personal experience - for a quiet set of hair clippers for cutting a child's (curly) hair? It doesn't need to be fancy. I've seen reviews of clippers like the Philips Norelco CC5060 Kids Clipper, but people seem to disagree on whether it's really quieter than standard cordless clippers.
posted by mistersix to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (10 answers total)
Not a recommendation for a clipper, as I've never heard one that was quiet, but: maybe consider acclimating him to the clippers in small steps over several days or weeks. If he's very sensitive to the noise, start off by letting him hear them from a distance, and move up to letting him watch you use it (further first, then closer), working up to letting him hold it a bit (with the guard on), then touch it to various parts of his body (again with the guard on, making a calm game of it). Let him have control of how close he gets to it, and don't push if he is frightened.

I had a sensitive infant, who does better now that she's older. We had to work into some things.
posted by moira at 2:59 AM on September 7, 2011

Oh, and touching it to his head should go very last.
posted by moira at 3:01 AM on September 7, 2011

It may be the vibration rather than the sound, though I know that doesn't help much. But if he could hold it and get used to the feel, that might make haircuts easier.
posted by lemniskate at 4:35 AM on September 7, 2011

There exist manual hair clippers. No buzzing, no vibrating, no noise, just snikt. Look for a product called "Scaredy Cut" which has a scissor action and would work well for curly hair (as opposed to buzz-cuts).
posted by seanmpuckett at 4:56 AM on September 7, 2011

This may sound crazy to you, but have you looked into clippers for pets? They are actually quieter because when dogs get scared, they bite and scratch (with really big teeth sometimes and claws!) I know, you don't want to think of your child as a dog, but the difference between the product for a dog and a human is the label they put on it. Plus, the pet ones can handle more volume of hair!

You may also want to try getting him a toy one that makes noise and vibrates so that he can "cut" your hair.
posted by Yellow at 4:58 AM on September 7, 2011

Looking for clippers that are marketed for horses. Quietness is frequently one of the major features horse people are looking for in clippers.
posted by COD at 5:15 AM on September 7, 2011

Seconding manual clippers. (There's really not much point in clippers being electrified in the first place.)
posted by Sys Rq at 8:54 AM on September 7, 2011

I also came in to recommend the Scaredy Cut. Silent, cheap, and effective.
posted by vorfeed at 1:13 PM on September 7, 2011

Thanks, folks - I'll try the Scaredy Cut and see how it works.
posted by mistersix at 2:59 PM on September 7, 2011

Manual clippers, it turns out, were not helpful; it's not the sound or vibration, after all, but more like the fear of something being done to/near his head that isn't under his control. I haven't been able to acclimate him to scissors or clippers yet, despite letting him hold clippers on his own; but in the hopes that I eventually will, I'll mark Moira's as best answer.
posted by mistersix at 3:12 AM on January 19, 2012

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