Trust us when we say this - trimming a hedge with anything other than a purpose-made trimmer is for the birds. We've been there. A particularly grasping landlord paired with a spring of rain and sunshine led to us trying (and eventually succeeding) to trim a hedge with shears.
Never again. If we'd only had the knowledge (and the capital) to buy or borrow one of the hedge trimmers on this list, our afternoon-long ordeal would have been over in a snap, freeing us to actually enjoy life. These models are all impressive, and all cordless to make sure that you don't twist yourself up in wires as you work.
Our guide to the best wire-free hedge trimmers to buy today
Bosch AHS 55-20 Lithium-Ion Hedgecutter
Bosch topped our list of cordless lawnmowers and does the trick again when it comes to hedges. This battery-powered trimmer should be more than enough for pretty much any private garden unless you're dealing with palatial, towering hedge walls. It's got a nice long head that will trim a big surface area really quickly.
The handles are also comfortable to grip and it's not too heavy at all, which is key when it comes to actually putting the thing to use. Battery life is really solid, too, meaning that you're unlikely to have to charge it in the middle of a job. All in all, it's the perfect choice for most people.
Husqvarna 115iHD45 hedge trimmer
The star of the show when it comes to the Husqvarna 115iHD45 is balance. It's designed carefully to make sure that it's easily held and indeed lofted and swung, making it a doddle to trim your hedges. It's quite a bit heavier than the Bosch, though, which is why it's not our top pick.
Still, Husqvarna's got a great reputation for quality, so if you want a slightly higher-powered trimmer this should do the trick nicely.
Black+Decker 36 V Lithium-Ion Anti-jam Hedge Trimmer
Black+Decker's trimmer acknowledges a key fact about hedge trimming - even if you're well-practised, and unless you're using professional-grade equipment, your trimmer will get jammed occasionally. It's got a handy button for just such an occasion, which gets your blades to track back out of the jam and could save them from costly damage.
That's a great little feature and is paired with vibrant colours and an easy-to-hold design to make this a really great trimmer with an impressive price.
Gtech's trimmer is notable for the fact that it doesn't have the same hand-held design as the others earlier in this list - it's intended to default to a longer reach that makes it a great choice for anyone with particularly tall plants to take care of. Saving yourself a trip up the ladder could be a great choice, safety-wise.
It's also got impressive battery life to go with the package, making it a great choice if that extra reach appeals to you.
Bosch Cordless Edging Shear
On the opposite end of the scale, though, if your topiary needs are actually really limited, or you don't have much storage space to spare at all, you could find that a tiny trimmer is all you need. Bosch's little kit is great for keeping small bushes under control with regular trims, and is a one-handed little device.
It's also got an attachment to keep the edges of your lawn in check, making it a useful little bit of kit on multiple fronts. We wouldn't suggest that this would be a great solution if you've got a big hedgerow to maintain, but for many of us with diminutive gardens it might be just right.