Shaver Buying Guide

Electric shaving with the Philips Norelco razorOne of the most important parts of any person’s daily routine, shaving is commonly practiced by men and women from all over the world in order to remove unwanted body hair and leave themselves feeling fresh and clean. There are a wide variety of shaver types, but the majority of shavers fall into two categories: electric or manual. Both types of shavers are equally effective, but both have distinct characteristics that make one or the other preferable for different users. For instance, some shavers are better suited to cutting certain types of body hair, while others are designed specifically around cutting facial hair.

The Different Types of Electric Shavers

First patented in 1928, the electric razor quickly became popular with users because it allowed the user to shave without using any shaving cream. This feature cuts down on the amount of time it takes to shave, which is a plus for anyone who’s in a rush each morning. There are nowadays three major manufacturers of electric shavers: Philips, Braun and Panasonic. Using an electric shaver is quite different from conventional manual shavers, because the device vibrates and oscillates to trim hair instead of requiring the user to perform each stroke. Electric shavers have come a long way since the first models in 1928, but there are still only two main types of electric razor: foil and rotary.

Rotary Shavers

Philips Norelco 1280X Best electric shaver for menThis type of razor has a set of rotating blades housed behind a perforated metal screen that prevents the blades from coming in contact with the skin, but allows hair follicles to poke through and be cut off by the internal razors. The majority of electric shavers currently on the market are rotary shavers, and they usually come at a much more competitive price than other types of razors. Rotary shavers typically have three or four floating heads, and each head has an oscillating razor on each end. The floating heads allow the razors to glide over the user’s face, and over sharp angles like the user’s jaw line. Rotary shavers can be very quiet compared to other models of electric shaver, because several small spinning blades don’t generate very much noise compared to one large blade.

My top rotary shavers are:

Foil Shavers

BRAUN SERIES 7 799CC-6WD CC4 Wet & Dry ShaverThe term foil refers to the thin layer of perforated metal that covers the blade, and the overall design of a foil shaver makes it much easier to use on sensitive skin. The foil captures hair in its slots and cuts the hair very close to the skin. Foil shavers are best for people with fine hair that grows relatively straight. The shaver relies on hair entering the foil to function effectively, so the user will have difficulties trying to trim curly or coarse hair. Foil shavers (link: top 5 foil shavers) give a very precise finish, so if you shave daily and you prefer a close shave, then a foil shaver is an excellent option. Foil shavers usually come with multiple blades housed inside the shaver, which helps the user shave quickly without irritating their skin. One of the only drawbacks of a foil shaver is that it has trouble with long hair, and they usually have a noisy motor.

My top foil shavers are:

Electric Shavers for Women

Panasonic ES-ED90-P Ladies Wet and Dry Epilator/ShaverSometimes referred to as an epilator (link: top 5 epilators) but also as electric shavers for women, come in many different shapes and sizes, but they all have a similar hair removal process. Epilators are similar to waxing because they pull out hairs instead of cutting them, which extends the amount period between each time the user has to shave. Using an epilator is an easy method to remove hair for women. The device has a rotating internal head with a series of graspers that grab onto multiple hairs at once and pull them out. Unlike waving, and other hair removal methods for women, epilators do not remove skin cells along with the hair or damage the user’s skin in any way. While extracting hair with an epilator is safer and easier than waxing, epilating can still be a painful process because the hair is pulled out from the roots instead of cut. Many people have commented that the pain is the worst the first time you use an epilator, but with each use afterwards the pain lessens until it feels the same a shaving. One useful tip is that applying lotion to the area you’re epilating can reduce the strain on the device and allow it to roll over the skin without issue. Make sure you read our epilator buying guide to find all the best features and advice for top rated women’s shavers.

About Electric Shaving

Just like almost everyone in America, I started shaving with disposable razor blades as well. These are cheap and espcially when you’re still in school or uni, not a lot of money to spend, probably the cheapest way to shave. When I got my first job, I was able to buy my first electric shaver (all shavers under $100). Although it wasn’t an expensive shaver, just a basic dry shaver, it was great. I have to shave every morning and I hated that the disposable razors were cutting and bruising my skin all the time. Electric shavers are fantastic when you’re in a hurry every morning and don’t want to get up 10 minutes earlier. A few years ago, I bought a new electric shaver, a wet&dry model, and these are even better. So convenient and smooth shaving!

Special Sensitive Skin Shavers

Most wet&dry shavers are ideal for everybody but this is my favorite top 3 shaver for sensitive skin:

Panasonic ES-LV81-K Arc5 Mens Electric Shaver Wet:DryWhile there are two main models of electric razor, there are many variations on each design that can make shaving much easier if the user has sensitive skin. While a foil shaver can provide a very close shave without pulling or knotting up facial hair, some users with extremely sensitive skin find that electric shavers are too rough. This is why many companies have developed we and dry electric shavers that help soothe sensitive skin. If you enjoy the convenience of using an electric shaver, but you don’t like the way it feels on your face, you can use special lotions and water in conjunction with a wet-and-dry electric shaver.

Some users with have commented that wet-and-dry shavers are an excellent option for people with sensitive skin, because the razor takes less time to get used to than other models. With any razor, it takes your skin some time to get used to the feel of the electric razor passing over your skin. Once you’ve gotten past that point, you’ll find that electric razors offer a close shave without irritating your skin nearly as much as a manual razor. You’ll need some shaving tips if you have a sensitive skin and want to have a close smooth shave. When purchasing an electric razor for sensitive skin, keep an eye out for the device’s vibration features and grip design. In order to give yourself a good shave it’s important that you can hold the grip comfortably. Some vibration settings can help alleviate the stress on your skin, which makes shaving even easier than before.

Pros of Electric Shaving

  • Electric shavers can glide over the user’s skin without the use of shaving lotion or water. This allows you to shave almost anywhere as long as your electric razor is charged
  • The shavers are ideal for anyone with light facial hair that grows slowly. Electric shavers are also recommended if you have very straight facial hair. All of these factors allow electric razors to function effectively without pulling or twisting your facial hair
  • You’ll have less of a mess to clean up afterwards because many dry shave models capture the cut hair inside the device for easy disposal. Another plus is that you won’t have to clean up any shaving lotion or constantly clean your razor while in use
  • Electric shavers don’t require you to replace razor cartridges. Many electric razors are self-sharpening, so the device will be in optimal working condition for the life of the product. Some models allow the user to replace the razors inside the device to extend the life of the shaver, but most don’t require new razors
  • The new wet&dry shavers can be used under the shower and are easily cleaned with water. If you have a dry shaver, read these cleaning tips to extend the life of your razorblades shaver head.
  • The user can shave in any direction, which makes shaving much easier, because you don’t have to worry about leaving razor burns or skin irritations. This also allows the user to trim in hard-to-reach areas that would be hard to reach with a conventional razor
  • If combined with lotion, an electric shaver can help keep your skin looking moist and rich. This is especially useful if you suffer from dry skin during the summer or winter
  • They are ideal for travel because you won’t have to carry around shaving cream and other bulky shaving items. You can simply bring your electric shaver along, and shave anywhere you can find an electrical outlet. Some models run off a battery, which allows you to fully charge the device before you leave, and use it over the course of your trip

The Types of Manual Shavers

There are many different makes and models of manual shavers, but there are two categories that are still popular today: disposable razors and safety razors. Some people still prefer to use a classic straight razor, but the old design isn’t nearly as popular as it once was. Fantastic gifts for men are the special shaving kits. Some come very complete with a safety razor, mirror, shaving cream, etc.

Disposable Razors

Sometimes referred to as a cartridge razor, disposable razors are used today by men and women alike because of the device’s simplicity, ease of use, and competitive price. Disposable razors can be purchased in bulk without breaking the bank, so when a razor blade becomes dull, you can simply replace it with another one. Some razors have a small cartridge where the blade is stored, while others have the blade built directly into the handle without any way to replace the razor. Razors that don’t have a removable cartridge are popular with travelers, because they can simply dispose of the razor after their trip, and the razors can be purchased in large quantities at a low price.

Cartridge-based disposable razors are slightly different because the handle is usually built from high-quality materials, so you simply remove the razor cartridge when it dulls. Modern disposable shavers can have up to five blades in each cartridge, but most mid-range models only have two or three blades. The fewer blades there are in each cartridge, the less expensive it is to purchase the razor, so it’s a good idea to plan the amount of blades per cartridge around your budget. Disposable razor blades can be very cost-effective if you don’t run through razor blades too quickly.

Safety Razors

shaving kit for menA popular alternative to the modern disposable razor, classic safety razors keep the traditional design of a safety razor, but build it with high-quality materials that give the user a very close shave. Safety razors were initially designed to reduce the level of skill required to operate a razor by putting a protective device between the blade and the user’s skin. Now, instead of simply shaving with a single blade, the device has a weighted handle, a double-edged razor, and a shield. While safety razors have been superseded by disposable razor blades, it’s hard to beat the control that a high-quality safety razor offers. The design has more-or-less remained the same since the razor was first patented in 1880, but it’s still used by men all over the world. Almost 50 years after the manual shaver was patented, in 1928 the electric shaver was invented.

Read further for my top 5 safety razors.

Safety razors also come with disposable blades that can be accessed through the top of the razor. Usually the bottom of the handle unscrews and the razor simply pops out, allowing the user to replace the blade. It’s recommended that you keep a fresh blade inside of your safety razor; otherwise the shaver will tear and pull on the hairs instead of cutting them. A safety razor is usually made from high-quality metals, so the shaver is typically heavier than other, disposable models. Some users have commented that safety razors can be difficult to master, but shaving enthusiasts appreciate the authentic look and feel of a modern safety razor.

shaving tips for menStraight Razors

Along with the two main types of razors still used, it’s important to keep in mind that you can still purchase a high-quality straight razor for the same price as a safety razor. While straight razors are not nearly as popular as the other two types, they give the user an authentic barbershop-style shave. Many people have been reviving the art of shaving with a straight razor, which has opened up a large market for straight razors. Many of the razors come with authentic wood handles and specially tempered blades to ensure that you have the cleanest shave. Straight razors aren’t very user friendly, so it’s recommended that novice shavers use simpler razors. On the other hand, shaving enthusiasts insist on using straight razors in order to achieve a great shave.

Special Trimmers and Clippers

Wahl 79524-2501 Chrome Pro 24-Piece Haircut KitAlong with regular razors and electric shavers, there are a host of specialized hair trimmers currently on the market that are optimized for trimming hair in certain places. Many specialized clippers are used for trimming beards and facial hair. Most electric shavers come with a built-in beard trimmer, and there are a wide variety of aftermarket attachments that can be applied to an electric razor to improve its hair-trimming efficiency. Beard trimmers can also be used to trim body hair, but there are a wide variety of other products that are designed for trimming lower-body hair.

When purchasing a facial hair clipper or a trimmer of any kind, it’s important to keep in mind the thickness of your body hair and how often you’ll be shaving. If you have very thick body hair, you might be better off shaving with a regular razor or using your electric shaver.

If you’ve decided to shave all your hair on your head, you should switch to a special shaver or razor in order to get the smoothest shave without irritation.

Steps to Shaving

Of course you can just take your razor and start shaving but that’s asking for a big mess. There are some simple steps to follow in order to achieve a smooth close shave. It won’t take long to do it properly! Read the tips here.

You might wonder why we have to shave. Well, we don’t have to shave and the reason for having hair on our face is mostly outdated. If you’re really interested in the history of shaving, there are a few museums where all the origin, trends and types of manual razors and electric shavers are displayed. Interested in more information about shaving, check out wikipedia.

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