Understanding the difference between each type of dog grooming scissor, is extremely important.
Whilst all dog grooming scissors have one thing in common in that they cut dog hair, these scissors are made in many different designs and they all have specific uses. That is not to say that the dog grooming scissors are not versatile but, they only perform to their best when used for the task they were originally designed for.
A dog grooming scissor’s sharpness, smooth cutting, comfort, durability and suitability are all key components to what makes a great pair of scissors.
There are however, so many dog grooming scissors available today and it can be difficult to know which scissors one should purchase.
What Makes Best Dog Grooming Scissors?
How do you know which dog grooming scissors you need? There are so many different types of scissors, not to mention a wide variety of brands that make each type.
First, let’s discuss the different types of dog grooming scissors and what they are best suited for.
Straight Dog Grooming Scissors.
Whilst each dog groomer has their own preferences, straight shears are fantastic at creating shape and finishing off a trim and are typically the best all-around or the most versatile of the dog grooming scissors family, you can own. If you are a pet owner and only wish to invest in one style of dog grooming scissors, then this scissor should be straight shears.
Why are straight dog grooming scissor the most versatile of the dog grooming scissors? Well, a dog groomer can create a rounded line with a pair of straight shears and it can be used on all areas of the dog’s body. However, curved, blending and texturising scissors cannot create a crisp straight line and they have more specific purposes.
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Detailing Dog Grooming Scissors
Detailing shears are the smallest of the dog grooming scissors. These range between 4” to 6” in length and are designed to be used on the feet, ear edges, around the eyes and other areas that require small hairs to be removed.
Curved Dog Grooming Scissors.
As the name implies, these lovely dog grooming shears are designed to have curved blades rather than straight blades. They are designed to produce curves and to add a finish to a curved area on the dog. Places that lend themselves to being trimmed with curved scissors are heads, ribcages, back leg angulation, legs and feet.
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Blending and Thinning Dog Grooming Scissors
There is still a lot of misunderstanding surrounding these dog grooming shears. This is mainly due to the fact that the technique is being confused with the name of the scissor. When considering this type of scissor, always keep in mind that these scissors are designed to lift, then hold the hair and remove some of the coat.
The term ‘thinning' is the removal of bulk hair and 'blending' is making a seamless transition between two or more coat lengths, for example, on a West Highland White skirt.
Both of these tasks can be achieved by a dog grooming scissor that has small to medium teeth on one or both blades.
The confusion can arise when a dog groomer choses the wrong tooth size for an unsuitable task. For example, a 6.5" dog grooming scissor with 40 teeth on one blade will not cope with bulk thinning work. This is because the teeth and spaces are too small to accommodate large amounts of hair. This scissor is designed for blending work on finer hair. The teeth and spaces are small enough to not leave scissor marks on the coat. At the other end of the scale, a 7" dog grooming scissor with 45 or more teeth are designed to thin hair, the teeth and space are larger. However, scissor marks can be left on finer hair, if the scissor is not used correctly.
Here are a few common uses for blending shears:
- Going back over a trimmed face, to make it look more blended and natural
- Trimming the feathers on medium-length, double-coated dogs, like Golden Retrievers and Pomeranians, to look more natural instead of blunt
Blending the skirt line of a dog.
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A traditional chunker typically is between 5’ and 6.5’ with 10 large teeth with a wider gap between each tooth. These scissors are designed to create a chunky, natural appearance. For example, on a West Highland White or Cairn Terrier head, used with extreme caution, will add a choppy or chunky finish. It does go without saying at this point, that preparation is as important as the scissor.
It is advised that these scissors are used with caution and precision. Used incorrectly may result in the removal of too much hair and affect the finish on the dog. Chunker scissors are not recommended for dog groomers just starting out, however, practice with them, will be beneficial.
Please click to view our range of Chunkers.
Texturising Dog Grooming Scissors
Texturising shears are just as their name suggests, these dog grooming scissors are designed to give a soft and creamy textured finish on a correctly prepared coat. The blade on a texturizing scissor can vary in lengths from 7’ to 10" and the number of teeth ranging from 20 to 30. A Texturising shear is a more versatile scissor compared to a Chunker, as they are able to add a finish to the coat and can remove any unwanted bulk. They will help leave a soft finish to a coat which is gives a different appearance to the sharp tailored finished achieved with a straight or curved blade scissor.
Please click to view our full collection of Texturising Dog Grooming Scissors.
Reversible Dog Grooming Scissors
Reversible dog grooming scissors are uniquely designed to allow the dog groomer to use the scissor in ANY direction.
Using a reversible dog grooming scissor helps eliminate the twisting of the arm into uncomfortable positions in order to get the blades moving in a particular direction. The reversible dog grooming scissors allows the groomer to influence the coat up or down depending on how the blades are directed. The finger rests on both finger holes, provides additional comfort and enables the dog groomer to cut in different directions with ease.
Please click to view our full range of Reversible Dog Grooming Scissors.
Micro-Serrated Dog Grooming Scissors
A micro-serrated edge is, as the name suggests, a series of very fine grooves machined into the cutting edges of your dog grooming scissors, as can be seen in the picture below. The serrated edge has micro serrations throughout the edge from beginning till end at the tip. There is no doubt that it is a necessity of a dog groomer to own at least one pair of micro serrated dog grooming scissors. It will not only contribute towards to a beautiful finish on the trim, it will also give the versatility in the art of dog grooming.
Please click to view our full range of Micro-Serrated Dog Grooming Scissors.
What To Look For In Dog Grooming Scissors.
Now that you know the different types of dog grooming scissors which are available, let’s go through what you need look for in your shears.
Are They Ergonomically Designed?
Firstly, What does 'ergonomically designed' mean?
Ergonomics is the applied science of human factor engineering in product design. It is intended to maximise productivity by reducing operator physical effort, fatigue and discomfort. A fantastic example of this in action is the computer mouse. You use this product (or used to as everything now is touch screen or touchpad) just by using two fingers to click and move around in small areas with the minimum amount of effort. You do not even think about using it because there is no pressure from your hand or fingers. It is effortless.
Secondly, why are ergonomically designed scissors so crucial to a dog groomer?
An ergonomic scissor design puts the least amount of stress on the hand, arm, shoulder and back. The handles are designed to be in an offset position, allowing the scissor to fit in the natural hand position, preventing the finger and thumb from moving and therefore creating a comfortable grip. The spacing between the finger and thumb holes helps prevent the groomer’s hand from cramping. A downwards bend in the thumb hole, allows the groomer to straighten the wrist and drop the shoulder and elbow.
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Are the dog grooming scissors made from 440c Japanese Stainless Steel?
Whilst many may believe that scissors are just made from steel, the types of steel used makes the difference between an unreliable scissor and a very highend dog grooming scissor. Over the years, we have tried and tested many models of scissors made from various metals and have come to realise through trial and error, that using 440 Japanese stainless steel creates the ultimate scissor. The science behind this is that stainless steel is an alloy made up steel and chromium. This chemical combination creates an alloy that is very sharp and will maintain its sharpness over a longer period of time. Stainless steel is very tough and as a result, will drastically increases the blades durability and lifespan. Due to the chemical combination of 440c stainless steel, rust is extremely unlikely to occur because the alloy is highly resistant to erosion.
How does this benefit you the dog groomer?
Dog grooming scissors crafted carefully using 440c Japanese stainless steel, will mean that your shears are lightweight, very sharp and maintain their sharp edge for a longer period of time. This enables you to use your scissors for longer between sharpening. As your scissor's blades are tough, again you may be able to use them for longer periods and especially throughout a difficult trim or in situations of removing matts. The fact that stainless steel does not rust is a wonderful bonus to you. Scissor maintenance is a vital part of owning dog grooming scissors but working in a moist environment can mean that your scissors are damp, covered in wet hair, sweat and oils from the dog's coat/skin as well as your own skin. Over time, rust will develop on all metals and alloys, so being able to use a material that reduces the risk of rust is key to a scissor’s design.
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Does It Have Removable Finger Rings?
Removable finger rings can allow you to customise how the dog grooming scissor fits on your fingers and in your hand. While this may not be a crucial feature, it can make a big difference in whether or not your hand cramps and starts to ache whilst trimming a dog, especially if you need to trim multiple dogs.
Does It Have Tension Adjusters?
Tension adjusters are a crucial feature to any dog grooming scissor. Having the correct scissor tension is extremely important for maintaining your dog grooming scissors and getting the best out of them. Not only having the correct tension, which will result in your scissors performing beautifully, it will also prevent the blades from locking or catching against one another.
If the dog grooming scissor is too tight or tense, the blades become stiff and do not move freely. This will result in unnecessary wearing down of the scissor and will cause fatigue for the dog groomer due to the extra effort required to move the blades. On the other hand, if the dog grooming scissor is too loose, this will result in the blades closing too quickly and will cause the hair to fold rather than be cut. Providing the dog groomer with the ability to adjust the tension to the correct setting, is an absolute must.
For more information on how to set the correct scissor tension, please click here for our free visual demonstration.
Dog Grooming Scissor Sizes
Shear size is also a key feature to consider when you are looking into purchasing dog grooming scissors. The length of the scissor depends on the type of dog you have in front of you, the grooming task you are about to undertake and what you find more comfortable to use.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I invest the money in expensive dog grooming scissors?
Purchasing high quality dog grooming scissors with all the key features above, is essential to all dog groomers. With many brands of shears available, it can be difficult to know whether you are paying too much or little. Ensuring that you are not paying more than you should, you may wish to compare two or three different companies to find out which scissors they offer, their prices and the customer service they provide. Ensuring that a company can provide direct communication should you have any queries and provide an accessible aftercare service, is vital. Also please look out for trustworthy review providers, such as Trustpilot and read the comments and feedback provided by verified customers. Read the company’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram profiles and look at the reviews and comments. Look out for the company’s professional associations with relevant organisations such as PIF (Pet Industry Federation.) These professional platforms can help you decide on which dog grooming scissor companies to consider and what prices you are happy to pay.
Do I need more than one type of dog grooming scissors?
The answer to this is yes! Whilst each dog grooming scissor have one thing in common in that they cut dog hair, shears are made in different designs and they all have specific uses. That is not to say that the dog grooming scissors are not versatile but, they do perform to their best when used for the task they were originally designed for.
How do I hold dog grooming scissors?
To ensure that all your dog grooming scissors perform to their full potential and help you create those beautiful trims and finishes, using your scissors with the correct action is vital. As professional dog grooming scissors vary in length, weight and style, this means that how you hold and use the scissors will change slightly depending on the type of scissors. Our aim in this article is to provide a useful learning tool by demonstrating visually the correct dog grooming scissor action.
We invited Eve Somers Icmg Gmg from Abbfabb Academy of Dog Grooming Training to provide a free demonstrate the correct scissor action. Maintaining a good scissor action also helps keep your dog grooming scissors in great condition, it helps maintain the correct scissor tension and helps keep the pennies in your purse rather than on continual sharpening.
Please click here to watch our free demonstration.
Finding the best dog grooming scissors can be complicated, but I hope this information helps make your search for the best dog grooming scissors a little bit easier.