Can You Use an Electric Razor Without a Guard? 

Find the answer to, “Can you use an electric razor without a guard?” and all that jazz in our article here. We will walk you through everything you need to know. 

Guards, also commonly referred to as clippers or combs, are accessories that fit onto the blades of your razors to snip your hair to a specific length. 

Although most razors, including electric ones, come with a selection of guards, you might wonder whether these are actually necessary, and can you use an electric razor without a guard? This article will give you the answer; read on!  

Can You Use an Electric Razor Without a Guard?

Guards usually come in 1 to 25 millimeters. Their purpose is to gather hair towards the blade and help the blade buzz cleanly without clogging issues.

So, yes, you can use an electric razor without a guard. It is completely safe to do so. But you will have to be a bit more careful and extend your routine to include rinsing and applying a tonic or aftershave moisturizer.

Using an Electric Razor Without a Guard

With & Without a Guard… 

To begin, let’s explore the difference between using an electric razor with a guard and using one without a guard

With a guard, you can choose to buzz your hair to a specific length. Typically, the options range from 1 to 25 millimeters. You clip or snap the guard onto your razor’s blade, and it should adjust the cutting to your desired length. As a result, you will always have a clean and consistent cut.

Lee's Razors
Lee's Razors

The guard works the same way for non-electric and electric razors, although some electric ones have an adjustable dial guard instead of a few detachable ones (e.g. The Philips Oneblade Pro).

Guards will have numbers imprinted on them to indicate the length that they offer. Even though it should not be too difficult to figure out, it is rather essential to note that different brands may have different systems and charts in place to denote what each number means. Nonetheless, the general rule is that a 0 is cutting without a guard and is the closest you can get to the skin. 

Note: The numbers on a guard are sometimes also referred to as “grades”. They will likely be called “low grades” and “high grades”. 

Without a guard, the razor will trim as short as it possibly can. Usually, this will be about 0.5mm to 1.5mm, depending on the specific razor that you have. 

When you buzz without a guard, you will be left with a very short stubble and will likely feel “naked”. By this same token, you will get the closest shave when you use the razor without a guard. 

Most people who use an electric razor without a guard use it for their beard and or hair. For the latter, you will get something like a buzzcut that will surely keep you cool, particularly in the hot seasons.  

0-grade buzz cut
An example of the 0-grade buzz cut

You can use an electric razor without a guard for a dry shave or a wet shave; it is mostly based on your personal preference. 

Typically, a dry shave will give you fewer irritations but will not deliver a close shave. Dry shaving tends to be quicker and leaves behind fewer cuts and nicks. However, you will be able to get a closer shave with a wet shave, although it is also common to feel abrasive effects, dryness, or itchiness as a result. 

See also:

Use an electric razor without a guard for both dry and wet shaving
You can use an electric razor without a guard for both dry and wet shaving

How To Use an Electric Razor Without a Guard (For the Face)

Note: The procedure is pretty much the same if you want to do a buzz cut for your hair. 

Now that you have read about the difference between using a razor with and without a guard, you may decide that you want to go ahead and shave without a guard. As such, the next step for you to take is looking at how to use an electric razor without a guard. 

Grab your electric razor and head into the bathroom in front of a mirror. Place a waste bin under where you are cutting to catch the clippings. This is a simple step that makes cleaning so much easier! Then, follow these six simple steps: 

  1. First, comb all your hair out so you can see where the longer hair strands are and adjust as needed throughout the later steps.
  2. Switch your electric razor on and begin shaving without attaching the guard. Or, use the grade 0 guard, which is essentially the same.
    (Note: You should point your blades upward and shave against the grain, starting on one side first. Do this slowly and carefully; you do not want hastiness to leave you with an ugly shave.)
  3. During this process, you may need to comb out your hair strands again so you can see where you still need to buzz. 
  4. Once you are done with one side of your face, move onto the other side and repeat the steps. Again, take your time and carefully comb your hair strands out once in a while to make sure that your trimmed hair is even.
  5. Then, comb your back down for a final check. At the same time, attend to any stray hair. 
  6. Check yourself in the mirror one last time and proceed to the clean-up steps. 

Post-Shaving Steps 

  1. Rinse your face to get rid of any excess loose hair.
  2. Then, pat dry your face with a fresh towel or cloth.
  3. Next, apply a tonic or aftershave moisturizer. Regardless of what you use, make sure you use it as guided on the packaging directions or the instructions manual. 
  4. Clean your trimmer using the brush that comes with it. Shake off any clinging hair, and be sure to go through all the blade grooves. If your razor is waterproof, you can also run it underwater (you also can clean your electric razor with alcohol)
  5. Finally, oil your razor and run it for 20 seconds before you wipe it down with a paper towel. The lubrication will keep your razor in tip-top condition and help extend your razor’s service life. So, it is critical that you never forget this step! 

For a more detailed visualization, watch Aaron carry out this procedure on his Youtube channel. 


As you have just read, the answer to, “Can you use an electric razor without a guard?” is yes. There should be no problem if you decide to do some buzzing without a guard. 

Nonetheless, if you still have questions about this matter, reach out to us in the comments below! If you have given shaving without a guard a try, please share your experience with us and other readers, as well!


Lee Cantor

Provide the best shaving product reviews and shaving advices to the wetshaving community and friends.

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