The 6 Best Pruning Shears – [2021 Reviews and Guide]

Promote new growth & shape your plants, we break down this year's top garden shears & scissors

Our Editors independently research, test, and rate what we feel are the best products. We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases.

In this review article from Outside Pursuits we have helped narrow down your options with our list of the 6 top-rated best pruning shears.

And to help you decide on the best garden shears for your specific needs, you can check out our guide on How to Choose the Best Pruning Shears for You. What are the best pruning shears for the money?

Best Pruning Shears

 Gardenite Power Drive Ratchet Anvil Hand Pruning ShearsCorona 3180D ClassicCUT Forged Bypass Hand PrunerFiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears
editors choice
Bypass Blade
Up to 5X your hand strength
Bypass hand pruners
Bypass hand pruners
CoatingNon-stick TeflonFully heat-treated

Precision-ground steel blade
Special FeaturesErgonomic design, Built-in safety lock

Built-in lock, Max cut of 1”
Soft-grip handles, Low-friction coating

Customer Ratings4.3 / 5.0 Stars4.4 / 5.0 Stars4.3 / 5.0 Stars

Also see: Pruning Shears Comparison Table

Quick Answer: The 6 Top-Rated Best Pruning Shears

  1. Gardenite Power Drive Ratchet Anvil Hand Pruning Shears
  2. Corona 3180D ClassicCUT Forged Bypass Hand Pruner
  3. Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears
  4. Gonicc 8″ Professional Premium Titanium Bypass Pruning Shears
  5. Garden Elite Razor Sharp Bypass Pruning Shears
  6. Fiskars Non-Stick Softgrip Micro-Tip Pruning Snip

Pruning Shears Reviews

#1 – Gardenite Power Drive Ratchet Anvil Hand Pruning Shears

best garden pruners and shears

At A Glance:

  • Anvil style
  • Ratchet mechanism
  • Up to 5X your hand strength
  • Ergonomic design
  • Built-in safety lock
The Gardenite Power Drive Ratchet Anvil Hand Pruning Shears are unbeatable when it comes to power. This is a pair of hand pruners that actually increases your own cutting strength by up to 5 times. That’s thanks to the fact that these are ratchet hand pruners rather than the more common bypass pruning shears.

The way that these garden pruners work is with a sharp blade that comes down onto a solid piece of metal. It’s more like a knife than scissors for this reason.

The ratchet mechanism in these Gardenite hand pruners is what gives it all the strength, though. Instead of having to use all your strength to cut through branches, vines, or stems in a single motion, the ratchet mechanism lets you continue to add force through several consecutive squeezes.

In other words, you can keep squeezing and releasing these hand pruners without them immediately opening back up. This is the perfect option for anyone with smaller or weaker hands.

Arthritis patients will certainly find these to be greatly useful because of how easy they are to use with superior effectiveness.

Power-Drive-Ratchet-Pruning-Shears review

Ergonomically designed handles help to increase the comfort level of anyone using these since they help to reduce strain on the hand and wrist.

This is especially important if you do plan to be doing a good bit of pruning. The carbon steel blade is also heat treated and hardened to further maximize strength and durability over time.

It even features a special, non-stick Teflon coating. This helps the garden shears to resist anything sticky that you may come across such as sap.

The great news is that even with this high level of quality and many beneficial features, these are not even the most expensive option of garden shears that we reviewed.

They are very affordable for what you get, which gives them unbeatable value and makes them one of the best hand pruners options out there!

#2 – Corona 3180D ClassicCUT Forged Bypass Hand Pruner

At A Glance:

  • Bypass hand pruners
  • Fully heat-treated
  • Sap groove
  • Built-in lock
  • Max cut of 1”
From Corona comes the 3180D ClassicCUT Forged Bypass Hand Pruner. These are some of the best bypass pruners on the market today and are great for getting the job done.

They are relatively simple when compared to the ratchet option from Gardenite but that is exactly what many gardeners are looking for – a simple choice of garden shears that is effective and highly affordable.

These are relatively large and are able to cut branches as thick as a full inch in diameter. This is great for tougher jobs, but you should keep in mind that it leads to needing a bit more strength in your hands compared to many other options.

These are not the best garden pruners for anyone with small or weak hands, or for anyone suffering from something like arthritis. The forged steel alloy blades have been fully heat-treated for intense durability that will last for years to come.

Corona-3180D-ClassicCUT-Forged-Diameter pruner reviews

Rather than having the non-stick coating like the Gardenite pruning shears, these shears have a small sap groove that directs sticky substances in such a way that won’t require you to regularly wipe down the blades in the middle of pruning.

While the handles of these garden pruners are not ergonomically designed, they are made with a no-slip grip that allows you greater control. They also feature a small lock to keep the blades shut in-between uses for increased safety.

All in all, these are very effective and simple. Just keep in mind that they aren’t the easiest or most comfortable option for anyone that may need that due to the condition of their hands or the amount of pruning they need to do.

#3 – Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears

At A Glance:

  • Bypass hand pruners
  • Precision-ground steel blade
  • Easy locking mechanism
  • Soft-grip handles
  • Low-friction coating
A very affordable choice of pruning shears that maintains a high quality are these Fiskars pruning shears. Just like the Corona ClassicCUT, these pruning shears are refreshingly simple. These are a bit smaller than the Corona garden shears. They’re perfect for cutting stems and smaller branches up to 5/8” in diameter.

While they don’t cut branches as thick as the Corona bypass pruners, they are easier to squeeze and use. That makes them a better choice for anyone that has lighter duty pruning needs or isn’t strong enough for a larger bypass pruner choice.

The built-in locking mechanism is even able to increase safety between uses while also remaining very easy to unlock – unlike many options other out there that have more difficult locking mechanisms.

Fiskars-91095935J-Bypass-Pruning-Shears reviews

The precision-ground steel blade is fully hardened to help guarantee the longevity of use through top-notch durability. There are no worries about this blade wearing out quickly.

In fact, these hand pruning shears come with a lifetime warranty from Fiskars. That should give you great peace of mind to know a company stands so firmly behind their product.

The blades also feature a low-friction coating similar to the non-stick coating on the Gardenite garden shears. It helps them to glide through whatever you’re cutting as well as prevents things like sap from building up and slowing you down.

Like the Corona shears, the handles on these Fiskars pruning shears are not ergonomic, but they do feature softer grips that help to increase comfort and ease of use.

#4 – Gonicc 8″ Professional Premium Titanium Bypass Pruning Shears

At A Glance:

  • Bypass pruning shears
  • Max cut of ¾”
  • Ergonomic handles
  • Sap grooves
  • Premium titanium steel
Here is another great bypass pruner option that comes from Gonicc. These are their 8” Professional Premium Titanium Bypass Pruning Shears. They are just slightly more heavy-duty than the Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears that we previously reviewed.

These can cut branches up to ¾” in diameter. This keeps them relatively easy and comfortable to use while also expanding a bit on their overall capabilities.

They also happen to have ergonomically designed handles unlike the previously mentioned bypass hand pruners on our list. This adds a lot of value and convenience as it makes a big difference in reducing hand strain to help you get more pruning done with less discomfort.

gonicc-Professional-Titanium-GPPS-1003-Clippers pruning shear reviews

The blade on these hand pruners is very high-quality and made of premium titanium steel. The blade even features ultra-fine polishing technology that gives it the ability to easily and cleanly slice through whatever you’re pruning.

The sap grooves add to this feature by pushing sap and other such substances out away from the blade to prevent sticking.

This is a very lightweight and comfortable pair of garden cutters that is excellent for a variety of pruning needs. While looks are far from priority with products such as garden cutters, it is worth noting that these have a very nice appearance.

If you are someone that appreciates good aesthetics, you’ll love the sleek design and stark contrast of the black shears and golden blade.

#5 – Garden Elite Razor Sharp Bypass Pruning Shears

At A Glance:

  • Bypass pruning shears
  • High-carbon Japanese SK-5 steel
  • Ergonomic rubber handles
  • Max cut of 25mm (almost 1”)
  • Extra blade included
These Garden Elite Razor Sharp Bypass Pruning Sheers are top-of-the-line when it comes to features and quality. The blade of these garden cutters is extremely hard and sharp.

It is made from high-carbon Japanese SK-5 steel. This is the hardest option available for steel used in tools like this, so you know these really are some of the best garden clippers out there.

Of course, when it comes to a high-quality, well-designed product such as this – you are going to pay for it. This is about 4 times the cost of the least expensive option that we reviewed and definitely the most expensive on our list of recommendations.

The maximum cutting width of these garden pruning shears is 25mm, which equals out to just barely under an inch. This gives them a ton of versatility.

Razor-Sharp-Bypass-Pruning-Shears reviews

Even with the wider cutting range, these are still relatively easy to use even for smaller or weaker hands. They have ergonomic handles that reduce hand strain.

They’re made of non-slip rubber to increase comfort and control even more. Something else unique about a pair of hand pruners that has such a wide cutting range is how lightweight they kept the design.

This, again, adds even more control while still continuing to further reduce hand strain. These are easily the best garden pruners if you’re looking for a solid combination of ease of use and versatility.

Garden Elite even includes an extra blade with these pruning shears for added value.

#6 – Fiskars Non-Stick Softgrip Micro-Tip Pruning Snip

At A Glance:

  • Bypass pruning shears
  • Micro-tip
  • Straight blades
  • Precision-ground stainless steel
  • Ergonomic, soft-grip handles
Finally, here is another great pair of Friskars pruning shears. These are the Fiskars Non-Stick Softgrip Micro-Tip Pruning Snip Shears. These are a bit different than most of the garden shears that we’ve reviewed here.

They are a good bit smaller and super easy to use. They aren’t made for anything heavy-duty. They won’t be a good choice if you need to cut even smaller tree branches. These are specifically for smaller plants.

They are ideal for things like deadheading flowers and shaping smaller plants. Since the focus is on smaller plants, the blades of these are straight rather than curved.

This and the smaller size makes these more like pruning scissors rather than pruning shears. The best part of these pruning scissors is just how easy they are to use.

Fiskars-Non-Stick-Softgrip-Micro-guide image

They are designed with a strong focus on comfort and ease of use. They have ergonomic handles that feature a soft grip for superior comfort and minimal hand strain.

The smaller blades and gentle spring-action help with this even more. In fact, these garden scissors have even received an Ease of Use Commendation from the Arthritis Foundation.

It is also important to note that it isn’t just the comfort and ease of use that makes these great garden scissors. They’re also highly effective with high-quality, precision-ground, stainless steel blades.

They even have the non-stick coating that keeps them working smoothly without getting sticky or clogged up. To top it all off, they are extremely affordable for all budgets!

Pruning Shears Comparison Table

Best Pruning Shears Bypass Blade
CoatingSpecial FeaturesCustomer Ratings
Gardenite Power Drive Ratchet Anvil Hand Pruning ShearsUp to 5X your hand strength
Non-stick TeflonErgonomic design, Built-in safety lock
4.3 / 5.0 Stars
Corona 3180D ClassicCUT Forged Bypass Hand PrunerBypass hand pruners
Fully heat-treated
Built-in lock, Max cut of 1”
4.4 / 5.0 Stars
Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning ShearsBypass hand pruners
Precision-ground steel blade
Soft-grip handles, Low-friction coating
4.3 / 5.0 Stars
Gonicc 8″ Professional Premium Titanium Bypass Pruning ShearsBypass pruning shears
Premium titanium steel
Max cut of ¾”, Ergonomic handles

4.1 / 5.0 Stars
Garden Elite Razor Sharp Bypass Pruning ShearsBypass pruning shears
High-carbon Japanese SK-5 steel
Max cut of 25mm , Extra blade included

4.7 / 5.0 Stars
Fiskars Non-Stick Softgrip Micro-Tip Pruning SnipBypass pruning shears
Precision-ground stainless steel
Straight blades, soft-grip handles
4.5 / 5.0 Stars

How to Choose the Best Pruning Shears for You

Like we mentioned earlier, pruning shears are not as simple as you might have once thought. There are many different features and details that go into each pair of pruning shears that set them apart from other pruning shears.

When trying to find the best garden pruners for your needs, there are several specific things to consider. Below, you can see a break down of the most important things you should take into consideration when choosing pruning shears.

best pruning shears review - guide

For the best garden, you’ll need the best pruning shears. Whether you have a big bursting garden full of tons of different plant varieties or just a few shrubs around your home, you’ll certainly want a good pair of garden shears.

Pruning your garden simply involves cutting away branches and stems that are damaged, overgrown, dead, or diseased. This has lots of wonderful benefits for your plants like allowing better growth, controlling insect populations, and preventing damage to anything in the surrounding area like your home.

Pruning your garden regularly helps to keep it both beautiful and healthy. Its normal to think that all pruning shears are basically the same thing, but they actually differ quite a bit.

Type of Pruning Shears

Let’s start with going over the types of pruning shears. There are two main types of pruning shears as well as a few other varying factors that are specific to each type. There are bypass pruning shears and there are anvil pruning shears. Bypass pruning shears are more common and great for a wide variety of uses.

They consist of one very sharp blade that comes down bypassing a thicker blade when squeezed – like the way a typical pair of scissors works. This helps to create a very clean and easy cut. Generally, bypass pruning shears work using a spring-action mechanism. This causes them to immediately open back up after you have squeezed them shut.

Anvil pruning shears also have a very sharp blade. Instead of the blade coming down to bypass another blade, it comes down on top of a thicker piece of hard metal – often referred to as the anvil. The anvil has a notch along it that the blade fits into. This ensures the blade is able to come all the way through whatever it is that you’re cutting.

These types of shears can be used for live stems and branches but are best-suited to dead materials since they can sometimes have a crushing effect on live stems. Anvil pruning shears are more likely to work via a ratcheting system rather than having a spring-action mechanism.

This means that you can keep squeezing several times in a row to apply more pressure without the shears releasing the pressure and opening back up. This increases the strength of the cuts you can make and is often a helpful option for weaker or smaller hands.

Maximum Cutting Width

Another very important consideration for finding the best garden shears for your needs is the maximum cutting width or simply the size of garden shears that you require. This is all dependent on what you will be pruning. If you plan on only working with smaller plants, you will want to stick to something smaller and won’t need to worry too much about the maximum cutting width.

If you are planning to be cutting branches, you’ll need to make sure that your pruning shears will be up to whatever job you need them for. Each set of garden shears has a different maximum cutting width that can vary greatly.

Think about the size of the largest things you’ll be pruning and compare that to the shears you are considering. It is also important to think about the fact that larger pruning shears that work well for slightly heavier duty tasks tend to put more strain on your hands and can be difficult for some users.

Blade Material

Choosing blade material is mostly about durability, but it also plays a role in the versatility of different pruning shears. You’ll almost always be looking at steel of some type, so it is mostly about the grade of the steel. High-carbon steel will be the highest-quality, strongest, most durable option.

pruning shears blade example

This will be able to more easily cut through even denser and thicker materials without any damage to the blades. It also tends to be more expensive.

Other steels of slightly lower grade – such as stainless steel for example – are still excellent for most pruning shear needs. This is especially true if they have some sort of coating on them as many do. They are more affordable and still fairly durable.

Handle Material and Design

Finally, you’ll want to look at the materials and design of the handles on different pairs of pruning shears. Some handles are made with ergonomic designs while others are not. This can play a big role in comfort, but not all non-ergonomic options are uncomfortable.

It also has a lot to do with the material. Softer materials will have more give and allow you to use them for longer without experiencing as much discomfort. Harder handles can cause discomfort much quicker but are also more durable. Ideally, you want handles that are non-slip as well since this provides much greater control.

FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions About Pruning Shears

Question: What are pruning shears?

Answer: Pruning shears are a type of hand-held tool that is most commonly used for gardening. They are specially designed to cut through stems and branches of plants. They are generally used in order to help the plant look and grow better.


Question: Do I need pruning shears?

Answer: If you are gardening on a small or large scale, pruning shears are extremely beneficial to have. You don’t want to let dead, damaged, or diseased sections build up within your plants. This can cause all sorts of problems and limit a plant’s ability to grow and thrive properly. Pruning shears are the best way to properly prune and trim your plants.


Question: Why are pruning shears curved?

Answer: Many – but not all – pruning shears feature curved blades. The purpose of the curved blade is to get a better grip and angle on whatever it is that you are cutting. The curve helps to hold the stem or branch in place as well as lets the blade go in at an angle that helps achieve a cleaner cut with the least amount of pressure required.

Pruning Shears Buyer’s Tips

Buying the right tool for the job is very important. That’s why we hope that our guide and list of the top-rated best pruning shears has been useful to you in your search for the best pruners.

If you’re still having trouble choosing a pair of pruning shears, user reviews on products are another excellent resource to get helpful, unbiased information on the products you’re looking at.

It is also very important to take your time when choosing where you will purchase your pruning shears. Prices, shipping, and service can vary quite a bit between different vendors.

We have found that Amazon delivers well on each of these things pretty consistently, but you should always keep options open in order to ensure you get the best deal possible.

Thanks for reading The 6 Best Pruning Shears. We hope this article has helped you to discover the best garden shears or garden scissors your plant and shrub pruning needs and preferences.

And if you’re shopping for other gear take a look at these related review articles from Outside Pursuits:


How We Researched

To come up with the top pruning shears, we researched a variety of sources for reviews such as Home Depot, Lowes, Target and AcmeTools along with our own personal experience.

We also consulted online magazines for product research and reviews to get as much unbiased information as we could. To help weed out fake reviews we used to make sure we only looked at genuine reviews.

With so much quality gear available, we had to narrow it down based on what we felt were the best options were for the price. The staff authors have a wide and varied background in yard maintenance and home repairs.

The authors have decades of experience and are eager to share their knowledge with readers.


To help narrow down the selection we used personal experiences along with recommendations from landscapers, bloggers and contractors.

After extensive research, we came up with our list to help you choose the right one for you.


Notice: is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program. earns fees from products sold through qualifying purchases by linking to Amazon offers a commission on products sold through their affiliate links.

Richard Moore

Richard is a co-founder of and major contributor to Outside Pursuits. He has trekking and survival experience throughout Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. Richard contributes his extensive travel and outdoor experience to the editorial topics and content on Outside Pursuits including outdoor gear, motorcycle accessories, auto/4x4 accessories, and tools. In 1998, he survived in the wilderness for over a week without food or specialist equipment. He was stranded on the northern coast of Honduras following Category 5 Hurricane Mitch.

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