Manicured facial hair is all the rage these days and we actively practice the art at EFTM. But can you seriously say a styler that costs less than $30 can do a good enough job to compete with $100 plus stylers? We put our facial hair on the line to test it out.

The product that claims it can trim a good look for less than $30 is the Gillette Fusion Proglide Styler. You’re probably aware of the Fusion range of products which are currently all about close shaves with lots of blades. There’s also soft shaving cream, additional blades and all that jazz. The Fusion Proglide Styler still includes the shaver but is also a small styler that comes with attachments you can use depending on the length of the facial hair you want.

Gillette’s sister company, Braun, who are at one with stylers and trimmers, provided the technology for this device, so the foundation is already pretty strong. But at under $30, there has to be a few compromises, surely? Well, there are, but they aren’t really a big deal.

Firstly, forget about automatically adjusting the trimmer to the exact millimetre you want. This is all manual and there are only a few attachments you can use. For those that just want a neat trim, then that is fine, there are enough options for you. If you want something millimetre precise though, look somewhere else.

The trimmer is also quite small. That’s good for annoying and hard to reach areas but it’s not great if you have a lot of hair to trim and not a lot of time. But the good news is the small trimmer glides effortlessly across your skin with minimal catching and irritation. Despite its size, you can get a lot cut in a fairly minimal amount of time (comparatively speaking for the size) so you’re never standing around for hours working on the same spot. It’s also comfortable to hold and easy to grip.

Gillette’s Fusion Proglide Styler is battery powered and compact which is great if you’re a frequent traveller. If you plan on only using it at home though, make sure you have a few batteries up your sleeve. There is no AC option so no battery means no trim.

To be quite honest, this was one of the better trimming experience we have had in quite a while, and the fact that it came from such a well priced device surprised us. We could certainly put up with a slightly longer trim time thanks to the comfort that the Fusion Proglide Styler provides. And if you drop it or damage it, no big deal because you just lay down another $30 and grab a new one.

Price: $29.95 (available late January 2013)