10 Best Paper Cutters | March 2017

We spent 28 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top picks for this wiki. From scrapbooking projects right up to large bookbinding jobs and everything in-between, one of these paper cutters will be the perfect trimmer for whatever your creative mind turns to next. They can handle as many as 400 sheets of paper at a time. Skip to the best paper cutter on Amazon.
10 Best Paper Cutters | March 2017

Overall Rank: 6
Best Mid-Range
Overall Rank: 1
Best High-End
Overall Rank: 9
Best Inexpensive
With its precision-printed measuring scale & grid and everlasting, self-sharpening blades, this Fiskars Bypass Trimmer is a decent at-home solution for making invitations, flyers, handouts and other crafts requiring heavy materials.
For those on a tight budget, the Tonic Studios 808 is a good option at just over $20. Its convenient features include a soft, orange handle grip and a paper guide with finger tabs to ensure straight cuts. But it's rather small.
Good for book-binding projects, the HFS 16150 Guillotine has a heavy-duty steel base and a hardened steel blade, allowing you to efficiently cut up to 400 pages. Its non-skid rubber feet will keep it steady on almost any tabletop.
Ideal for tabletop use, the SMTHouse YG-858 offers an extra-long handle, giving you plenty of leverage for cutting through thick stacks of A4-sized paper. Its adjustable paper clamp also eliminates unforeseen shifting and tearing.
  • scratch-resistant surface coating
  • easy-to-read clear-embossed cutting grid
  • doesn't come with any instructions
Brand OrangeA
Model pending
Weight 36 pounds
The X-Acto 26618 is a relatively dependable, guillotine-style paper cutter with an 18" x 18" cutting surface and an intuitively-designed side safety lock that won't get in the way of the blade's cutting path.
  • attractive and elegant looking
  • good for classroom use
  • adjusting measurements is cumbersome
Brand X-Acto
Model 26618
Weight 19.5 pounds
The Carl DC-220N Rotary paper trimmer boasts a patented locking rail mechanism that is designed to hold up to 36 sheets of paper securely. Its adjustable magnetic paper gauge is also great for making repetitive cuts.
  • cuts mat board, plastic sheets, and foam
  • limited lifetime warranty is offered
  • the blade tends to dull rather quickly
Brand Carl
Model 12220
Weight 8 pounds
Good for photographers and office professionals alike, the Dahle 552 delivers a unique 2-way cutting blade that cuts thick stacks of paper with superior precision, while also sharpening itself in the process. It's expensive, though.
  • imprinted protractor for angled cuts
  • automatic clamp holds work securely
  • it's rather heavy and bulky
Brand Dahle
Model 552
Weight 10.6 pounds
Perfect for heavy-duty use, the Westcott TrimAir 15107 provides a sturdy wood base and an ergonomically-designed handle infused with anti-microbial product protection. Its built-in safety guard also helps to prevent injuries.
  • long-lasting, titanium-bonded blade
  • easy and comfortable to use
  • very durable construction
Brand Westcott
Model 15107
Weight 7.9 pounds
The Swingline ClassicCut Ingento CL540m features a durable, self-sharpening steel blade. Its die-cast metal cutting arm and steel tension spring are both designed to ensure clean, precise cuts from almost any position.
  • solid maple wood base
  • cuts up to 15 sheets at a time
  • non-slip rubber feet keep cutter steady
Brand Swingline
Model 1172
Weight 41.2 pounds
The QCM 8200M Desktop paper cutter delivers heavy-duty action, thanks to its ability to cut up to 360 sheets of 12-3/8-inch wide paper simultaneously. Its automatic safety blade lock also prevents cutting until it has been released.
  • steel side gauge with measuring scale
  • needle bearing joints
  • the blade is very easy to replace
Brand QCM
Model QCM-8200M
Weight pending

Good For Fighting Aliens

You probably know the name Jon Stewart as belonging to the former host of The Daily Show, a half-hour satirical news show that airs on Comedy Central. What you might not know about Jon Stewart, though, is that he's a space alien. At least, he played one in a terrible movie from the 1990s called The Faculty. Imagine Invasion of the Body Snatchers, a film in which a parasitic invading alien species takes control of the bodies and minds of human hosts, but have that invasion start exclusively with the faculty of a local high school.

In a pivotal scene, just as Stewart's character reveals itself to be an alien, a young Josh Hartnett somehow manages to pull the arm off of a nearby paper cutter in a smooth, effortless motion, and use the bladed stick as a weapon against funnyman Stewart. The layers of absurdity here are thick, but the ease with which Harnett tears the arm off the paper cutter has always stayed with me.

For the record, most of the paper cutters on our list are tough enough to withstand the likes of Josh Hartnett's wet noodle arms, but, in theory, their blades are strong enough to fight aliens, should the need arise. Fortunately, for the time being, we can confine our examination of the devices to the act of cutting paper.

If you have the kind of skill I have with a pair of scissors, then you know what it's like to try to cut a straight line and to end up feeling like Jack the Ripper. I butcher paper with scissors. I shouldn't be allowed to own them. A paper cutter, on the other hand, I can operate with ease and accuracy.

That's because paper cutters make it easy for you to hold pages firmly against a lip set perpendicularly to the cutting blade. They have measurements in inches and centimeters printed on their surfaces and on the run of the lip, so you can accurately recreate cuts as you work your way through as many pages as you need to slice.

Even when used carelessly, this combination of pinpoint measurement and sharp, sturdy cutting edges will give you straight, uniform cuts through thick paper, stacks of pages, and other materials.

Cut Through The Hoopla

Don't let the similarities in body design fool you; just because a lot of these paper cutters look alike, that doesn't mean they perform alike. Sure, they all cut paper along straight lines with accuracy and durability, but beyond those facts the differences abound.

Take, for example, the weight of a paper cutter. A lighter paper cutter won't sit as firmly on a table or counter top, which means you have to apply more pressure to the cutter itself to counter the pressure you apply to the paper with its cutting arm. If the paper cutter is too light, or is poorly balanced, the whole unit could shift, resulting in a sloppy cut.

For that reason, you should look for a cutter that's as heavy as your budget will allow. It might inhibit your mobility if you're a some kind of itinerant paper artist, but you'll be grateful for its accuracy over the lighter models.

Another important factor to consider is the quantity each paper cutter can handle per slice. Our top rated paper cutter can handle hundreds of pages at a time, where the cheapest among the options on our list should stop before it sees more than half a dozen sheets stacked on it. If you cut high quantities of paper and you need quality to boot, you'll have to spend a little more on a higher capacity cutter.

Finally, there's your purpose to consider. More mathematically complex cuts require more visually detailed cutting surfaces, and a few of the paper cutters on our list look worthy of a Fields Medal, where others haven't quite mastered their multiplication tables yet.

Once you've figured out the complexity of the cuts you need, the quantity of pages you need to cut, and the mobility you require of you paper cutter, you'll be able to narrow down this list to one or two stellar options.

A Blade From Above

The paper cutter as we know it today saw its first iteration at the hands of French inventor Guillaume Massiquot in the 1830s. He patented the machine in 1844, with an updated patent in 1852, and improvements continued through the years.

It isn't unfair, perhaps, to say that the true predecessor to the paper cutter was the guillotine, that lovely and specific device employed in the removal of human heads. Invented in the 1500s by a pair of very intelligent and equally cruel Europeans (it was a French/German collaboration), the guillotine very accurately sliced people's necks instead of reams of paper.

It's terrifying to think of such a barbaric tool actively being used in the modern age, but the very last guillotining in France took place as recently as 1939, when the French government executed a man convicted of six murders.

Using the technology to increase efficiency in paper cutting instead of people cutting, industries from newspapers to publishing houses found an easy and efficient way to slice through mountains of pages in less time than ever before.

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Last updated: 03/25/2017 | Authorship Information