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Updated December 2021
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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 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 Wet/Dry Electric Shaver with Cleansing Brush
Philips Norelco
9700 Wet/Dry Electric Shaver with Cleansing Brush
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Bottom Line

Multiple shave speeds, helpful LED indicator lights, and a great selection of attachments sets this razor apart from other Philips models.

Pros

We love the flexibility of the three shaving speeds, allowing users to control if they prefer a faster shave or a milder shave. The heads rotate in an impressive eight directions for extra closeness and comfort. LED indicators alert users to charge level, shaving head level, and travel lock engage. This model also includes a facial cleansing brush attachment and handy self-cleaning mode.

Cons

The plastic head covers must be removed for cleaning and tend to fall off with prolonged usage.

Best Bang for the Buck
Philips Norelco 5100 Wet and Dry Electric Shaver
Philips Norelco
5100 Wet and Dry Electric Shaver
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Bottom Line

This razor stands out for the maneuverability of the flexible head and the long-lasting battery life which can hold a charge for several days.

Pros

The flexible head works great, allowing users to get at tough-to-reach spots some other razors cannot, utilizing Philips signature three head blade system for good comfort. The razor outlasts most models with a full charge. Can be used dry or wet.

Cons

The trimmer attachment requires removing the razor head to be used, and is easier to misplace than the pop-up attachments on other models.

Philips Norelco 3100 Corded Electric Shaver with Comfort Cut Blade System
Philips Norelco
3100 Corded Electric Shaver with Comfort Cut Blade System
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Bottom Line

A sturdy shaver that offers a close shave at a low cost for those who do not need a wet shave option.

Pros

This model includes Philips traditional three head alignment, so it provides a close and comfortable shave comparable to some higher priced models. The pop-up trimmer means not having to worry about losing an attachment. The one-touch open makes for easy cleaning.

Cons

No cordless option means this model is less mobile and cannot be used in the shower.

Philips Norelco 7500 Electric Shaver for Sensitive Skin
Philips Norelco
7500 Electric Shaver for Sensitive Skin
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Bottom Line

This model offers equal dependability for both wet and dry shaves in an electric razor specially designed for sensitive skin.

Pros

Gives a surprisingly close wet shave. The razor moves smoothly over skin due to the built-in glide guard, which prevents the rashes and bumps. Heads move in five directions.

Cons

The included cleaning system is bulky, requiring more bathroom counter space than expected.

Philips Norelco 8900 Wet/Dry Electric Shaver with Beard Styler
Philips Norelco
8900 Wet/Dry Electric Shaver with Beard Styler
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Bottom Line

This model provides an exceptionally close and comfortable shave, and includes a useful click-on beard styler with adjustable settings.

Pros

This razor earns its distinction as one of Philips top-end models. The powerful motor gives a shave comparable to manual blades without irritating the skin. The beard styler is simple to attach, and can be adjusted to five different settings. Offers users a lot of flexibility in getting the look they want.

Cons

Some users report the shave heads on this model wear down more quickly than on some similar models.

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
197
Consumers
Consulted
26
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Researched
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Buying guide for best philips electric razors

Shaving can sometimes seem like a chore, but with modern technology, it doesn’t have to. Philips manufactures a plethora of grooming products, including one-blade razors, hair clippers, and trimmers, but here we’re focusing on the brand’s Norelco shaver lineup. One of the most popular electric razor options on the market, Norelco shavers come with three heads that rotate in up to eight different directions to fit the exact shape of your face and neck. Not only do you get a clean, close shave this way, but with the right product, you might just look forward to your morning routine.

Norelco shavers are a great fit for first-time shavers and veteran beardsmiths alike. The brand offers wet and dry shaving capabilities, adjustable speed settings, clever user interfaces, and a variety of grooming attachments at different price ranges. If you’re looking to become a grooming guru yourself, read on.

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Norelco shavers utilize a variety of blade technologies to guarantee smooth results. NanoTech blades, for example, are reinforced with thousands of “nanoparticles” to keep the surfaces sharp and precise. Similarly, Super Lift & Cut blades actually raise the hair before cutting it below the skin level for a super close finish.

Key considerations

Shaver style

As we stated above, Norelco shavers include three heads that shave in different directions for maximum coverage. There’s more variance within that than you might think, however, with some cutting in four directions, with others cutting in five or eight directions. In addition to that, some heads are significantly more flexible than others, which helps reach stubborn hairs and tricky contoured areas such as the jawline and Adam’s apple. Powder-like metallic pigments and anti-friction coatings further separate high-end models from the rest of the pack. As you might expect, the more dynamic and reactive the head, the better the results. These models tend to cost more as a consequence.

To personalize your experience, top-of-the-line Norelco shavers include multiple speed settings. The Shaver 9700, for example, boasts three — slow for a skin-friendly shave, medium for a thorough shave, and fast for a high-powered shave.

Battery life

Electric razors are powered by lithium ion batteries, but some have more juice than others. Entry-level variants can run for 30-45 minutes on a charge, but they may take up to 8 hours to replenish. On the other end of the spectrum, expensive versions can be fully charged in just 1 hour and provide 50-60 minutes of run time.

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Did you know?
When switching from a manual razor to an electric one, it can take two to four weeks for your skin to adjust. There can be irritation during this time due to the more abrasive electric blades, but this is completely normal and should fade over time.
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Features

Wet/dry shaving

Everyone’s morning routine is a bit different — some shave before showering, some do it while showering, and some even do it in the car on the way to work. Flexibility is important when choosing an electric razor, so consider your wet/dry options when shopping.

Dry shavers are relatively self-explanatory, as they aren’t rated for water and are generally quite affordable. Wet/dry shavers, on the other hand, employ tough seals (commonly branded as Aquatec) to keep moisture away from the sensitive electronics. The convenience allows you to dry shave, shave while bathing, shave in the car, shave with or without shave cream, and everything in between. These combination options are also extremely easy to clean, as the top usually flips open and can be simply rinsed out.

Beard trimmers

You don’t always need a complete clean shave. In fact, sculpted stubble or a contoured beard can greatly enhance your look. That’s why Norelco products commonly include beard trimmers, whether it be a simple flip-up extension or a separate attachment that clicks into the main unit.

You’ll find SmartClick trimmer attachments on flexible head models such as the Shaver 8900 and S9000, while cheaper alternatives have single-blade flip-up versions.

Cleansing brushes

Generally available on high-end models only, cleansing brushes take your grooming prowess to the next level. These attachments click into the main unit just like the beard trimmers do, delivering a deep, thorough facial cleanse with soft and hygienic brushes.

"Manual razors cut hair at a sharp angle, but electric razors generally do so straight-on. This can result in thicker-looking hair when it grows back, but despite common belief, electric shavers do not actually make your hair grow thicker. "
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Self-cleaning modes

As if electric razors weren’t convenient enough, select iterations will even clean themselves. Philip’s SmartClean system cleans, lubricates, and charges your shaver all at once, and all you have to do is plug it into the purpose-built dock. These models can cost a pretty penny, but no worry, other models can be simply cleansed with hot water and a soft brush.

LED displays

Ever wondered if your shaver battery was low, or perhaps if the travel lock was on? Select Norelco shavers boast LED user interfaces with indicators for battery health, blade replacement requirements, cleaning status, speed settings, and more.

Philips electric razor prices

Inexpensive: Despite their high quality and available features, Norelco shavers can be bought for as low as $50. For the money, expect relatively static heads that shave in four different directions. You’ll still get a great shave with these units, but they aren’t as adept at reaching troublesome areas.

Mid-range: For $100 to $200, you’ll find more flexible shaving heads that adapt to every contour of your face. Nearly every option should offer wet and dry shaving at this price point, as well.

Expensive: Finally, at $250 and up, features such as self-cleaning docks, adjustable speeds, digital user interfaces, cleansing brushes, and octo-directional shavers become more common.

Tips

  • Dry shavers should obviously be used dry, but to get the most out of your wet shaver, a little prep goes a long way. Wash your face with warm water, take a hot shower, or use a hot towel before using. This will remove impurities and soften your beard, allowing you to get the cleanest shave without causing irritation.
  • Pre-shave solutions can help you achieve the best grooming results. Some use alcohol to remove dirt and oil, while others use powder or caffeine to stand the hair straight up. This causes the hairs to be cut cleaner and shorter, which means a closer shave. Aftershaves can help prevent skin irritation.
  • To achieve desired results with a rotary shaver, don’t use long strokes; instead, glide the shaver in small circles, taking care not to go over the same spot too many times.
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Electric razors are allowed in both checked and carry-on airline luggage. Some options include travel locks that prevent your device from activating during transit, which can save your possessions from possible damage.

FAQ

Q. Can an electric razor shave as close as a blade?
A.
Modern electric razors are capable of extremely close, clean shaves. That said, there will always be a physical barrier between the blades and your skin due to their inherent designs, and that means a manual razor will always get closer. Electrics offer unmatched convenience though, which is why so many people prefer them.

Q. What is the best way to maintain my electric shaver?
A.
High-end electric shavers often include their own self-cleaning stations, so all proper maintenance entails is docking the unit when it’s not in use. For other models, rinse after each shave and clean the blades once a week. Follow manufacturer instructions for specifics, but cleaning generally entails unplugging the unit, removing the cutter head, brushing accumulated hairs off with a brush, and rinsing it under hot water. Apply lubricating oil if instructions direct you to do so. Also, resist the temptation to tap the shaver on the sink to remove whiskers, as this can damage it.

Q. How often should I replace my shaver’s blades?
A.
Blade replacement guidelines vary from product to product as well as user to user. Every beard is different, after all, and proper maintenance isn’t always performed. A general rule of thumb, however, is to replace your blades every year or so, keeping in mind refills will cost about $50.

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