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Any man who likes to get a smooth, quick shave and not cut himself in the process would love an electric shaver. Prized by men across the world for their ability to make short and easy work of beards and unwanted facial hair alike, there’s a booming industry for electric shavers.
While having a lot of choices is generally prized in a free market, it’s also no secret that too many choices can end up being confusing. If you have to choose from thousands of different razors, picking the best electric shaver for the money can be quite a challenge.
However, the reality of it is that there really isn’t a single best shaver. You will need to take your particular desires into consideration when you are purchasing an electric shaver. No two men are alike after all, and everybody has different preferences and needs when it comes to hair removal.
Things To Consider When Buying an Electric Shaver
When purchasing an electric shaver, there are many things that you will need to keep in mind. As stated earlier, no two men are the same, and preferences differ.
Foil or Rotary?
Foil shavers have cylindrical, rotating heads that look like logs, while rotary shavers look more like circles, usually in a triangle shape. Generally speaking, most men tend to go for the rotary shavers because they are considered to be more comfortable than the foil shavers are, with less risk of nicks. Particularly for men who like the stubbly look, rotary is often the shaver of choice.
Men who prefer a very close shave may prefer a foil shaver since it will cut the hair much closer to the skin on the first try. However, they aren’t as comfortable against the skin when compared to rotary shavers.
Men who have mustaches often prefer electric shavers that have a pop-up trimmer. In addition, you can also use a pop-up trimmer to trim ear, nose, and even eyebrow hair. Men who need to do a lot of detail work may benefit from a pop-up trimmer. If you’re less exacting about your shaving, you can probably do without one.
Those who are fastidious about the cleanliness of their shavers may want to purchase a model that comes with a cleaning dock. Cleaning docks make it easy to ensure your shaver stays hygienic; all you have to do is pop the shaver into the dock and the dock will do the work for you. However, many men prefer to clean their own blades and would prefer to give the cleaning dock a pass.
Basically, most electric shavers are cordless these days, though there’s some that allow you to use them while they are being charged. If you’re the type that’s apt to forget to charge, you may want to ensure that your shaver has the option to use it while it’s plugged in. There’s nothing worse than reaching for your shaver on a bleary morning and realizing that it won’t come on because it’s not charged, and you can’t plug it into the wall. Fastidious personalities may fare just fine with one that will religiously be charged overnight.
Many shavers these days come with an LED indicator that will indicate whether or not the shaver is fully charged and how charged the shaver is. This isn’t a universal feature, but if it’s important to you, make sure the shaver you want has it. In fact, some of the electric shavers on the market that are designed to look a bit more timeless or old fashioned may purposefully not include a modern LED light. Or it could be hidden.
The Best Electric Shavers for the Money
Again, these are not in any order of importance, since everybody will have different preferences. Plus, people have different budgets and desires. The “best for the money” for one person may be impossibly expensive for another buyer. We are trying to appeal to all budgets and desires with this list.
Philips is the undisputed master of rotary head shavers, and this one tops them all. It is definitely a bit of an investment, but the bang for the buck you get out of this shaver is incredible. Plus, if you take good care of it, it’s likely to last you for years as Philips is very high quality and this is one of their higher-end electric shaver models.
It performs well on both the beard and the head, depending on what you want to shave. The head of this shaver cleaves effortlessly to the curves of your head and neck. This is a rotary shaver that actually can outperform a lot of lower-level foil shavers when it comes to closeness. Of course, it’s still not going to be as close as a high-end foil shaver, but if you’re a rotary devotee, you’re likely to find the slight difference in closeness worth the comfort of rotary.
It also has Wet and Dry technology, which means that it can be used safely both in the shower and outside of it. The three rotary knobs are also independent, which is what makes this such a good buy for people who want to shave their heads. It provides a very close shave.
The main negative that is reported about this particular Philips model is that while the shaver may be relatively high-quality, it feels a bit too light. Most would like a bit more weight for a more “premium” feel to the product. Plus, the battery is internal to the device. If anything goes wrong with the battery, you will need to replace the device. You are also unable to charge this razor directly through the cord; you must use the dock.
Overall, this is a great choice for a man who wants to have a high-end rotary electric shaver that offers very similar performance to most foil shavers on the market.
This electric shaver offers three trimmers and one of the closest shaves that we have ever seen out of an electric razor. It is an extremely high-end foil shaver. Many people who tested this model actually compared the closeness of this shave to shaving with a straight razor, which is almost impossible to get when combined with the convenience and relative safety of an electric.
Another advantage of this model is that it comes with a cleaning dock. Keeping this Braun clean is as easy as using a touch of a button. This can be a real time-saver on those mornings where you don’t have time to ensure that every single bit of hair is out of your shaver. (Most people who finally cave and get a cleaning dock never go back to one without it, once they get spoiled by the convenience.)
People who own this razor tend to rave about it. However, it is best used for shaving the face rather than the top of the head due to the shape of the foil blades. If you are planning on using this for shaving your head, you may want to think twice about that.
This shaver also offers three different speeds of shaving so that it can be adjusted for people that have more sensitive skin. One of the negatives about foil shavers is that they are not as gentle as rotary shavers are, and the different settings on this Braun make foil shaving more accessible for those who may have sensitive skin or are more afraid of nicking themselves.
Another plus is that this is a metal shaver, so that it “feels” expensive and luxurious in your hand. Many people appreciate that and it helps to enhance the shaving experience.
The one main negative about this razor is that it does not have wet and dry technology, so you absolutely cannot use it in the shower. If you are the sort that tends to shave in front of the sink, however, this will obviously be of little consequence.
This is a great foil shaver for those who are on a budget. This shaver is under $100, but it performs well for the price. However, it does not come with a charging or cleaning dock, which is one of the reasons why it is as inexpensive as it is.
The Arc 4 has a bigger brother in the Arc 5. If you are looking for a razor that is slightly more high-end than this one, the Arc 5 comes with five blades, a cleaning dock, and a charging dock. Again, the cleaning dock is considered to be highly convenient and most men love them, but they are completely not necessary. If you are concerned about price and performance, and you aren’t willing to pay for unnecessary additives, then the Arc 4 is a wonderful model to go for.
The Arc 4 basically packs the same amount of performance the Arc 5 has into a cheaper package—it’s just missing a single blade. If you’re looking for a high-end performance for a low-end cost, this is a great choice to make, which is why we’ve recommended it above the Arc 5. The Arc 4 definitely wins out where “bang for buck” is concerned. It’s almost unreal how cheaply Panasonic is selling this well-crafted foil razor.
However, one of the negatives about the Arc series is that many users report that they are a bit noisy. Even the Arc 5 shaver suffers from this problem. So if you live with a light sleeper and you shave in the room right next to your bedroom, you may want to think twice before purchasing this model. Either that or consign yourself to shaving at night.
This is one of the most popular rotary electric shavers of all time. If you walk into a man’s house and he has an electric shaver, it’s very likely that it’s a version of this shaver. In fact, when most people think “electric shaver”, they probably think of the Philips Norelco 4500. This is the quintessential electric shaver.
Why? It’s absolutely budget-friendly at around $60. And it’s got that rotary feel that many love for its comfort and safety. It is also a very quiet shaver, which is great for men who might be trying not to wake up the special person in their lives in the morning. Plus, it’s got that coveted wet-dry technology, so it can be used both in the shower and outside of it.
Basically, this is a versatile, affordable shaver that can get the job done in a comfortable manner. The main complaints that people have about this particular Philips is that it doesn’t feel as luxurious in the hand as some of the higher-end options do (unsurprising, given that it’s got a much lower price than anything else on our list). Plus, the heads do not move independently, so there’s not a lot of flex in the movement of this shaver. This does not make it ideal for shaving heads.
But if you are looking for an affordable electric razor that will get the job done and comes at a very good price, then this is a great option for you.
Buying the Best Electric Shaver
Again, everybody has different budgets and preferences where electric shavers are concerned, so there is no one single “holy grail” shaver for every man out there. But we do think that these four shavers (two foil, two rotary, two high-end, two budget-minded) provide a great spread of electric shavers for men of all preferences.