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Updated February 2022
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Bottom line
Pros
Cons
Best of the Best
Philips Norelco 9700
Philips Norelco
9700
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Bottom Line

The 9700 is the upgrade many satisfied Norelco users seek. All of the best features of other models are incorporated, including wet/dry capability and advanced cleaning.

Pros

Versatile wet/dry operation. Variable speed motor provides more comfortable shave. Very quiet during use.

Cons

Attaching the sideburn trimmer can be challenging. Cleaning system requires careful handling. Blades snag and pull longer hairs.

Best Bang for the Buck
Philips Norelco 2100
Philips Norelco
2100
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Bottom Line

An affordable introduction to the Norelco line of rotary electric shavers, ideal as a travel model or low cost replacement for aging shavers.

Pros

Can be used for other body hair removal. Entry level price point, but mid-range performance. Includes a pop-up trimmer for beards and sideburns.

Cons

Can leave a layer of stubble behind. Motor performance is anemic. Skin irritation and razor burn reported.

Philips Norelco 8900
Philips Norelco
8900
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Bottom Line

For those who seek a versatile electric shaver with a truly spectacular cleaning system, the 8900 is one to consider. Closer than average shave, and helpful trimming accessories.

Pros

Very close, clean shave by electric razor standards. Individual heads can be replaced, not an expensive process. Easy to clean and maintain between shaves.

Cons

Requires multiple passes for complete shave. Can irritate sensitive skin. Will not run while plugged into charger.

Philips Norelco 4500
Philips Norelco
4500
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Bottom Line

The 4500 is a good medium range workhorse model, with wet/dry capacity and a powerful but quiet motor. Includes a basic beard/sideburn trimmer attachment.

Pros

Gentle on skin, very little irritation reported. Long operational time on a single charge, no fade. Rinses clean under hot water.

Cons

Does not contain a power meter display. Battery is not replaceable. Shave closeness is variable, not as good as traditional razor.

Philips Norelco 3100
Philips Norelco
3100
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Bottom Line

The 3100 is a low cost alternative that still delivers a decent shave. Designed for dry shaving, but can be rinsed clean. Women can also use it to shave legs.

Pros

Very affordable price point. Good ergonomic design, feels comfortable in the hand. Blades can be rinsed under running water.

Cons

Relatively long 8-hour charging time for 45 minutes of use. Lightweight plastic housing feels cheap. Does not provide a very close shave.

HOW WE TESTED

We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

30
Models
Considered
185
Consumers
Consulted
22
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Researched
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Buying guide for best norelco electric shavers

Philips Norelco electric shavers stand out for their comfort and unique designs that offer a variety of ways to shave. The shavers are known for their reliable performance and useful features.

Most of the company’s shavers adapt well to the contours of your face, and different models are designed for stubble, longer beards, or even other parts of the body. Some Norelco shavers can be used wet or dry, giving you flexibility in how and where you shave. Most have a battery life ranging from 45 to 60 minutes. Some shavers are fully washable, and the SmartClean station that comes with some models cleans and lubricates the shaver.

With so many options, choosing the right Norelco electric shaver can be overwhelming. Our shopping guide outlines the features and functions and provides a few recommendations to make your decision easier.

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Some Norelco shavers have different shaving speeds so you can adjust it to your hair thickness or skin sensitivity.

Key considerations

Norelco electric shavers vary in blade system, shaving heads, and shaving style. Even the most basic offerings are reliable for daily use, but some models include additional functions and features for easier cleaning or for styling your beard, for example.

Blades

  • V-Track blade system: One of the most popular Norelco blade systems, it excels at lifting hard-to-get hairs for a clean shave.

  • DualPrecision blade system: This is designed for stubble or longer hair.

  • MultiPrecision blade system: This works well for cutting longer hair or short stubble, though it might take a few passes to achieve a clean shave.

  • ComfortCut blade system: This offers a gentle shave that’s perfect for sensitive skin.

  • CloseCut blade system: This uses self-sharpening blades that easily achieve a smooth shave when working with stubble.

  • Super Lift & Cut Action system: This is a dual-blade system designed to target hairs that lie flat. This system might be paired with any of the other Norelco blade systems.

  • NanoTech Precision blade system: This is Norelco’s most precise blade system, allowing you to shave cleanly with a single pass.

  • SkinProtect blades: These are designed to move over skin smoothly and cut hairs in just a few passes.

  • GentlePrecision blades: These are designed for use on sensitive skin and a range of hair types.

Shaving heads

Most Norelco shavers are rotary shavers with three rotating blade heads that pivot in different directions to independently adjust to the contours of your face. Most Norelco blades pivot in four to eight different directions. The more directions the blades can tilt, the likelier it is that you can capture hairs on the first pass.

    Wet/dry

    Norelco’s wet/dry shavers use the AquaTec seal to keep the internal components of the shaver dry while you shave with shaving cream or in the shower. Norelco’s wet/dry shavers work just as well as dry shavers, giving you the option of shaving before, during, or after your shower.

      Corded/cordless

      While most Norelco electric shavers are cordless and cannot be used while charging, some models can be used as corded or cordless shavers. If you shave infrequently, consider a corded-only shaver.

      Maintenance

      • Rinse: Many Norelco shavers are fully washable and can easily be rinsed out with water when you’re done shaving.

      • SmartClean system: Some shavers come with Norelco’s SmartClean system, which holds the shaver while it is cleaned, charged, lubricated, and sometimes dried (SmartClean PLUS). The SmartClean system uses a cleaning cartridge that holds the cleaning and lubricating solution. One cartridge is included with shavers that come with the SmartClean system, but you will have to purchase new cleaning cartridges as needed.
      "The anti-friction rings on many Norelco shavers allow the blades to glide over your skin without irritation."
      STAFF
      BestReviews

      Norelco electric shaver features

      Attachments

      • Three-in-one shavers: Some Norelco electric shavers include attachments, such as trimmers and body groomers, so you can use your shaver on your face, beard, and body.
      • SmartClick precision trimmer: This is included in some shavers that don’t include a body trimmer. Like the other attachments, this replaces the rotary shaver head and allows for detail work or beard trimming.

      • Sideburn trimmer: Some budget Norelco shavers have a pop-up sideburn trimmer on the back of the head.

      LED display

      Many of the higher-end Norelco shavers, like the S9700, include an LED display that shows you several different notifications. This is a great way to keep your shaver well maintained before the blades become too dull or the head is full of trimmed hair. It also means you won’t run out of power mid-shave.

      • Battery charge status

      • Cleaning reminder

      • Unplug-to-use reminder

      • Overheating warning

      • Change blades indicator

      Speeds

      Some Norelco shavers include different speed options to accommodate different hair lengths or skin sensitivities. In most cases, these shavers have a sensitive, normal, and fast setting.

      Travel case

      Some Norelco shavers include a hard travel case that protects the shaver and its accessories. This is a great extra for travel or if you just want to keep everything in one place at home.

      Content Image
      Did you know?
      Norelco electric shavers feature a one-touch design, so you can quickly pop the head open to clean it out.
      STAFF
      BestReviews

      Norelco electric shaver prices

      Inexpensive: Norelco’s entry-level electric shavers range from $15 to $25. Many of these are travel shavers. Some traditional rotary shavers in this range include pop-up sideburn trimmers. While you can get a good shave with these models, it might take you several passes, and the blades might struggle with hairs that lie flat.

      Mid-range: Norelco shavers that cost $25 to $80 vary from basic rotary shavers to fully washable shavers with wet/dry capability and trimming attachments.

      Expensive: Norelco electric shavers that cost from $80 to $300 are high-performing shavers. Many have LED displays and multiple shaving speeds and include the SmartClean system, which does a lot of the maintenance for you.

      Tips

      • Lubricate your Norelco electric shaver every two or three shaves. This will keep the blades spinning smoothly.

      • Check blade replacement costs. Take note of the price of replacement heads or blades for your shaver because they will need to be replaced eventually.

      • Recharge quickly. Most Norelco shavers can’t be used while charging, but the quick-charge function only requires a few minutes of charging.

      • Check the warranty. Not all Norelco shavers are covered by the Philips two-year warranty. If this is a concern for you, be sure to purchase a model covered by the warranty.
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      Many Norelco blade systems feature self-sharpening blades, prolonging the life of the blades and giving you consistently close shaves.

      FAQ

      Q. Can I replace the blades with a different Norelco blade system?

      A. Most Norelco electric shavers accept only the type of head or blade system they come with. You should consider the price of replacement blades when shopping for a Norelco shaver.

      Q. How long do Norelco electric shavers last?

      A. Most Norelco shavers can be expected to last five to seven years, but many people use theirs for ten years or more.

      Q. Are charging cords and stations compatible with other Norelco shavers?

      A. Many charging cords and stations can work with Norelco shavers in the same series.

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