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Best electric shaver 2021: Get a closer, more comfortable shave whatever your budget

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Looking for a better shave? We’ve got the best and latest models from Braun, Panasonic, Philips, Remington and more

The best electric shavers will help you to achieve exactly the look you want, whether that's a smooth shave or a five o’clock shadow.

The problem is that it can be a bit of a minefield picking the right electric shaver for you. Firstly, there's the question of price: how much do you need to spend to get something that does a decent job? As well as that, there are also plenty of different features to consider. Do you prefer foil or rotary blades? Do you need a model you can use in the shower? How about a detail trimmer for tidying up your sideburns afterwards?

Below, we've picked the best electric shavers on the market right now for a range of different budgets and requirements. If you're still undecided after checking out our picks, you'll also find a handy buying guide at the end of this article.

Save £20 on the incredible Philips Series 9000

The Philips Series 9000 is the best rotary shaver we’ve ever tested - the problem was always the price point, with it retailing at £341 when we reviewed it and even higher at launch. Now, Amazon has reduced the price to just below the £300 mark making this the perfect Christmas buy.
Amazon
Was £319
Now £299

Best electric shavers: At a glance


The best electric shavers to buy

1. Braun Series 3 3040s: The best affordable electric shaver

Price: £60 | Buy now from Argos

This affordable foil shaver uses three independently floating elements to adapt to the contours of your face. It can be used in the shower for a wet or dry shave and, best of all, one hour of charging promises up to a whole week’s worth of shaving.

There are no fancy extras: you only get a charging cord and plastic foil guard. Shaving performance isn’t up there with pricier models such as the Braun Series 7, either – you’ll need to do a few passes for a close shave – but cleaning is easy and the results are good for the money. Another slight annoyance is the sensitivity of the power button, which means even the slightest brush can turn it off in the middle of a shave. If you can live with that, though, this is a great shaver at a keen price.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable NiMH; Battery life: 45 minutes; Charging time: 1 hour; Waterproof: Yes, IPX7-rated

Buy now from Argos


2. Philips Series 3000-S3333/54: The best mid-range rotary shaver

Price: £57 | Buy now from Amazon

The latest version of Philips’ 3000 Series rotary shaver is an absolute cracker, with a new ‘5d’ pivoting head that’s designed to adjust to the curves of your face and neck, combined with self-sharpening blades that should give you a close shave for longer. The shave is certainly a cut above – or indeed closer than – most budget and mid-range rotaries, and very comfortable with it.

The other big strength of the new Series 3000 is its excellent design and build-quality. The ergonomics are spot-on and it feels very robust – there are no cheap plastics or flimsy pop-up trimmers here. You can use it to shave wet, dry or in the shower, and the clear battery indicator makes it clear when it’s running out of puff. You can expect 60 minutes of shaving from a charge of the same time.

There are slightly better shavers around if you go upmarket, but if you’re on a sensible budget and tend towards less regular shaving and a thicker, more unruly beard, then this one’s brilliant value. You can even save £20 or so by going for the cheaper but identical S3231/52; the only difference is that it comes without a charging stand.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable lithium-ion; Battery life: 60 minutes; Charging time: 60 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

3. Remington Style R4: Best budget rotary shaver

Price: £37 | Buy now from Argos

If you’ve got thicker facial hair or you’re lazy about shaving, Remington’s Style R4 is the best of the budget rotary shavers. The specs are surprisingly high for the money, with a rechargeable battery, three heads and a pop-up trimmer, and the dual-track blades and flexing cutters work to give you a decent shave, even in tricky areas like the neck or under the jaw.

We’re not so impressed by the 3-day stubble styler – a plastic attachment that doubles as a cover. It pulled at thicker hairs painfully and struggled with a longer beard. Meanwhile, the long charging time and low-ish battery life could leave you out of power when you need it most. If you shave fairly regularly, this is a solid, well-designed shaver – though the R5 is even better for not a lot more cash.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable NiMH; Battery life: 40 minutes; Charging time: 16 hours; Waterproof? No

4. Philips OneBlade QP2620/25: The best electric shaver for sensitive skin

Price: £28 | Buy now from Argos

This Philips OneBlade looks like a fancy traditional razor, but thanks to the bundled stubble combs it’s as at home trimming beards as it is giving a close shave. The OneBlade shaving technology oscillates 200 times per second and this translates to a quick, comfortable shave. Charge time is eight hours for the QP2620’s NiMH battery, which then delivers 45 minutes of use.

Our only quibbles with this one are the closeness of the shave and the cost of extra blades – the blades last four months and cost £11 a pop, and the OneBlade technology doesn’t shave as closely as its foil and rotary rivals in this list. Those with particularly sensitive skin will love it, though – we experienced zero stubble rash with the OneBlade.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable NiMH; Battery life: 45 minutes; Charging time: 8 hours; Waterproof: No, water-resistant; Blade lifetime: 4 months

Buy now from Argos


5. Remington F6 Style Series Aqua: The best electric shaver to use in the shower

Price: £50 | Buy now from Argos

In or out of the shower, the F6 Style Series Aqua is a great rechargeable shaver, with the feel and features of more premium shavers at a thoroughly affordable price. Its two independent flexing foils and intercept trimmer give you a close shave for the money, with the head pivoting to follow the contours of your face and tackle difficult spots around the chin. Build quality is solid, bar a slightly flimsy pop-up trimmer, and the non-slip grip is great if you’re using it wet. Remington’s clip-on stubble styler is better at protecting the foils than actually trimming beard growth down to size – expect a few ‘ouch’ moments if you try it – but this is one of the most comfortable shavers we’ve tried for around £50.

It gets bonus points for its battery charging, too. Normally you’re looking at a 90 minute charge for 60 minutes of shaving, but a quick emergency 5-minute boost will get you through a shave in a pinch. And, to make this even more convenient, the F6 Style Series doesn’t need a dedicated charger; with a USB cable, you can use any USB charger, power bank or even laptop.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable Li-ion; Battery life: 60 minutes; Charging time: 5 to 90 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

6. Philips Shaver Series 5000: The best rotary shaver under £100

Price: £90 | Buy now from Amazon

If you want a good rotary shaver but don’t have a sky-high budget, the Shaver Series 5000 is a great step up from the Remington Style R4. It packs in some of the same technology you’ll find in Philips’ high-end Series 9000 models, including the SkinIQ technology that senses the density of your facial hair and adapts the motor power to give the optimal shave. Meanwhile, the heads pivot in all directions to give a closer shave in tricky areas, though we found a few tight spots around the jawline that still needed a couple of goes. This may be because the head assembly feels larger than the average.

The battery takes an hour to charge for over an hour’s shaving, though there is a five-minute rush charge if you need it, and you can use it wet or dry and rinse it under the tap when you’re done. Philips also sells this model with an optional cleaning pod, which does a fantastic job of cleaning and lubricating the head. You simply insert the supplied blue goo cartridge, stick your shaver in upside down and turn it on. However, you’ll pay an extra £40 to £50 for the privilege and it’s a fine shaver with or without.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable Li-ion; Battery life: 60 minutes; Charging time: 5 to 60 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

7. Braun Series 7 70-N7200cc: The best electric shaver under £200

Price: £165 | Buy now from Boots

The previous-generation Braun Series 7 7898cc set a pretty high standard for foil shavers, using four synchronised shaving elements and a micro-vibration technology to deliver an impressively smooth shave, even if you didn’t shave every day. The new Series 7 70-N7200C is – against the odds – even better.

The head, with 3 flexible blades, is mounted on Braun’s new 360° Flex adaptive system, which can twist and pivot in all directions to follow the contours of your face. Meanwhile, Braun’s AutoSense technology ramps the shaving power up and down according to the density of your beard. It’s genuinely great at pushing through thick and unruly stubble, and there’s not as much of the nasty ‘plucking’ sensation that’s often associated with electric shavers.

Elsewhere, the new handle is lighter and easier to grip, with the button falling right under the thumb. You can still use it wet or dry, and Braun bundles in its SmartCare Centre, which cleans, lubricates and charges when you insert the shaver head downwards and push the connector at the top. You can have 50 minutes of shaving from a one hour charge or sneak an emergency shave in from the 5 minute quick charge. Some might find the illuminated indicators on the SmartCare Centre a little blinding, but that’s really the only criticism we have. It’s the best premium shaver we’ve tested without a sky-high price.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable lithium-ion; Battery life: 50 minutes; Charging time: 60 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

Buy now from Boots


7. Philips Shaver Series 7000: The best smart shaver

Price: £200 | Buy now from Argos

Philips Series 9000 shaver is the best rotary shaver we’ve ever tested, but it’s also the most expensive, with a price tag that will frighten off the majority of buyers. The Series 7000 is more approachable, giving you most of the same core technology for half the price. The latest version is a little chunkier than the outgoing model, with redesigned heads that aim to channel facial hair into the ideal cutting position. They twist and pivot to follow the contours of your face, so that the self-sharpening SteelPrecision blades don’t miss a whisker, while a protective coating reduces friction and makes for a more comfortable close shave. Put it all together, and you get a premium shave whether you shave dry, with foam or gel or in the shower.

Of course, most electric shavers don’t give their best results on the first shave, getting better as they bed in and you get practice. Here Philips has a nifty trick in its GroomTribe app, which works via Bluetooth and uses motion sensors in the shaver to track your shave and help you improve your technique. You probably won’t use it after the first few shaves, but it’s a good way to help you get started. What’s more, the Series 7000 has the same cleaning pod as the Series 5000, to help you get your shaver clean and ready for action. With its smaller, lighter body and more mobile head, the Series 9000 is still one step ahead for closeness and comfort, but the Series 7000 is a whole lot easier on the wallet.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable Li-ion; Battery life: 60 minutes; Charging time: 5 to 60 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

8. Panasonic ES-LV9Q: The ultimate high-tech shaving system

Price: £219 | Buy now from Amazon

Sure, it costs north of £200, but Panasonic’s ES-LV9Q is one ludicrously high-tech shaver. Its five-blade cutting system cuts at an incredible 70,000 actions per minute to ensure no facial follicle goes unsliced. Meanwhile, its pivoting head moves to trail the different surfaces of your face and a sensor checks your beard density to give the heads more power where necessary. Put this all together and Panasonic’s shaver delivers an incredibly close and frankly flawless shave.

Having said that, we found it works best if you shave every day. If you let a few days pass, the long hairs seem to fox this smart shaver, leaving odd hairs loitering on your fizzog. For the very best results, you can use it wet, then place the shaver upside down in its cleaning station and wait while it cleans and dries. This involves 80 minutes of fan noise and the shaver itself isn’t quiet, but if you’re horrified by the thought of going out unshaven, this shaver will make damn sure your nightmares don’t come true. And if you’re happy to clean it yourself? Just the shaver comes in at a slightly less extravagant £170.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable lithium-ion; Battery life: 45 minutes; Charging time: 60 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

9. Philips Travel Shaver PQ206/18: The best electric shaver for travel

Price: £17 | Buy now from Argos

This tiny electric shaver might not look like much, but it’s an absolute steal at the price. About the size of a mobile phone, the Philips Travel Shaver packs in a pair of rotary heads equipped with self-sharpening blades that last for up to two years. Plus, as it takes easily-available AA batteries, there’s no need to carry a charger with you when you go abroad.

You only get an hour of shaving from a pair of AA batteries, and the shaving performance isn’t as close or quick as pricier models, but the results are surprisingly decent. For little more than a tenner, you get an effective shaver, a zip-up travel case, and a pair of batteries to get you started. If you’re flying abroad to finalise that multi-million-pound deal, this might not be the shaver for you. But, for everyone else, the PQ206 is a perfect travel companion.

Key specs – Battery type: Replaceable AA; Battery life: 60 minutes; Waterproof: No

Buy now from Argos


10. Philips Series 9000 Prestige: The ultimate rotary shaver

Price: £341 | Buy now from Amazon

It’s tempting to think that the Series 9000 Prestige is all about the gimmicks. Philips’ most expensive high-end shaver ships with a fancy, glowing, wireless QI charger, a carry case and a clever click-in trimmer which does a great job of sorting out your sideburns. It sports a futuristic design, complete with a digital battery indicator, and takes around three hours to charge wirelessly, after which it will shave for around 60 minutes.

It definitely looks and feels the part, with premium materials and a lightweight but tough construction. Yet what really sells this shaver is the sheer quality of the shave. Straight up, it’s by far the best rotary we’ve ever tested, delivering a closer shave and leaving fewer hairs behind than any other, yet managing to do so without irritating sensitive areas of the face and neck – something that we can’t say for every other shaver.

The trick is that it senses and adapts to the density of your beard, while the high-precision floating head gets as close as possible to the skin. We usually take all the talk of NanoTech Dual Precision bladed and 150,000 cutting actions per minute with a pinch of salt, but the tech in the Series 9000 seems incredibly effective. Of course, it’s incredibly expensive, but if you want the best, then this is it.

Key specs – Battery type: Rechargeable lithium-ion; Battery life: 60 minutes; Charging time: 180 minutes; Waterproof: Yes

How to choose the best electric shaver for you

What type of shaver do I need?

It really depends on how thick and wayward your beard growth is and how often you need (or want) to shave. If you have thick facial hair that sprouts in all directions – or if you only shave every few days – a rotary blade shaver is usually the best option. The best eat unruly hairs for breakfast (Ed: gross) and will clear thick stubble in minutes.

Foil shavers work better if your hair is relatively light or if you like a clean shave every day; you’ll find them softer on your skin and they can sometimes give a closer shave – and the battery life is often better.

What are the best shaver brands?

The UK’s market-leading electric shaver brands are Braun and Philips. Remington, Panasonic and Wahl are also very popular manufacturers.

What power source options are available?

When choosing a razor, you might come across mains, battery and rechargeable devices. Most electric shavers are rechargeable these days, making them perfect for use both at home or on the move. While some can be used both cordless or from the mains – allowing you to use them even if you’ve run out of charge – you should probably avoid battery-powered shavers. These are designed for occasional use only and using them often could cost you a fortune in batteries.

Should I choose a shaver based on my skin type?

If you have sensitive skin and are prone to razor burn, a foil shaver might be your best bet as they are recognised as being less harsh on the skin when compared to rotary shavers.

What extra features should I look out for?

Charging: Many cordless shavers now come with a quick-charge setting that means you can plug in your shaver before you get in the shower and it’ll have enough power for one shave when you’re finished. If that’s not an option, however, plug them into the supplied docking station – or simply plug in the cord from the power adaptor – and they can usually be fully charged within an hour or two. Some now even charge through a USB cable.

Waterproofing: As well as dry use, a lot of cordless shavers can be used with shaving foam or gel, if you’re worried about sensitive skin. Many can also be used in the shower – if you’re really in a hurry in the morning. Make sure you read the instructions before getting your shaver wet, however, as not all are waterproof and many are only, at best, water-resistant.

How much should I spend?

Of course, this comes down to personal preference, but not every shaver will work for everyone’s face. The price of electric shavers varies massively, and the cost isn’t always indicative of how it will work for you.

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