The Difference Between Scissors And Garden Shears

More often than not, people think that scissors and shears mean the same thing. But there is a considerable difference between these two cutting tools.

Each of them has a different configuration and performs different functions. In this article, let’s look at the difference between scissors and shears.

The meaning of scissors

First, let’s try to understand the term ‘scissors.’ Typically, scissors are cutting equipment with two blades and handles that crisscross each other to form a pivot at the center.

In the United States, almost every household has this cutting tool. There is a wide range of scissor types, from kitchen scissors to hairdresser scissors. Scissors are often multi-functional tools; hence you can use them to perform different tasks.

Functions of standard scissors

Below are some of the uses of regular scissors.

  • You can use scissors in the kitchen to cut herbs.
  • Scissors are ideal for opening home delivery parcels and cutting paper. You can help your child complete their art project using this must have garden tool.
  • Today, health practitioners use standard scissors to cut bandages during minor operations.
  • Also, you can use scissors for personal grooming.

The definition of Shears

Shears are slightly different from scissors. Although shears have the same features as scissors, they are bigger.

Shears have a more oversized handle and are more robust to accommodate strenuous cutting jobs like trimming gardens.

Tailors use shears for cutting fabric since they incorporate more cutting strength. At present, there are many types of shears.

Some include fabric shears and gardening shears. But generally, some applications of shears include:

General functions of shears

  • Shears are ideal for trimming gardens
  • Shears are perfect for cutting fabrics.
  • Homeowners can use shears to cut cooked meat like poultry.
  • You can also use shears to separate cables.

Similarities of scissors and shears?

  • Both scissors and shears comprise two blades. These blades cross each other to form a pivotal point for more effortless movement. In most instances, this cutting equipment has one moving blade, and one still blade. Moreover, both edges have stainless steel material for longevity.
  • Both cutting tools come in a wide range of sizes. So, you can always choose a size that suits your needs. Even so, shears come in larger sizes compared to scissors.
  • The blades of scissors and shears take up different forms. Some are convex or beveled. The type of shears or scissors you plan to use often depends on your requirements. For example, if you’d like to pierce through something or maneuver around a curved corner, choose scissors or shears with a convex blade. They will work best for you.

Differences between scissors and shears


In most scenarios, scissors refer to cutting equipment with a height of fewer than six inches.

As mentioned earlier, shears are larger than scissors. Shears are not less than six inches in length.

Thus, they are ideal for tougher cutting jobs. In fact, there are shears specifically designed to trim taller plants and trees without the use of a ladder.


Shears are often designed to perform larger tasks like gardening and sewing. They can handle more strain compared to standard scissors.

Thus, if your scissors can’t seem to pierce through a fabric or something else, consider using shears.


Shear handles are not symmetrical like those of scissors. The handles are usually bent to provide maximum comfortability.

The handles typically have one small opening for the thumb and another large opening designed to fit a few fingers.

On the other hand, scissors have grips with smaller openings. Thus, they may not be able to accommodate all your fingers. As a result, scissors do not offer high cutting strength like shears.

Consume less time and effort:

The design of shears makes it easy for you to cut fabric or any other item easily. Consequently, you won’t strain your back or hands.

Moreover, shears are ideal for people with underlying health conditions that limit mobility.

Since they offer high cutting strength, they require less effort from users. So, even if you have a health problem, shears help you continue with your daily tasks.

Maintenance practices of scissors and shears

Homeowners need to take care of both scissors and shears. Otherwise, they would end up getting damaged.

  • Always store scissors and shears properly to prevent them from falling on the ground unnecessarily. If either of the cutting equipment falls hard on the ground, this may cause blunt blades or broken handles. In turn, you would have to replace them. Use a strong scissor or shear holder to store this equipment. Fortunately, most brands sell scissors and shears when they are already in their case or bag.
  • Although shears can be multi-purpose cutting tools, strictly use hair cutting shears for hairdressing purposes. Such shears are relatively delicate and get damaged when they experience too much strain.
  • When dealing with both scissors and shears, do not expose them to direct contact with harsh chemicals, detergents, sanitizers, and cleaners. Doing this might lead to rust and cause blunt blades.
  • It would be best to keep lubricating your scissors and shears to maximize traction. Subsequently, you will boost their durability. Nonetheless, you have to ensure you lubricate these tools as per the manufacturer’s guidelines. Failure to do so would put these tools at risk of damage.

When it comes to maintaining scissors and shears, the practices are pretty much the same.

But remember, every product is different. So, take time to read and understand the manufacturer’s instructions.

From there, you can proceed with implementing the proper maintenance practices.

Is there a difference between scissors and shears?

From this article, it is clear that there are many differences between scissors and shears.

Although most people think that these cutting tools mean the same thing, shears are much larger than scissors.

Usually, shears are longer than six inches, while scissors are less than six inches. As a result, shears have high cutting strength compared to scissors.

Before purchasing such cutting equipment, evaluate your requirements. Then, you’ll know what you need.