Everything You Need to Know About Shaving With Electric Razors

Here's what you need to know about shaving with electric razors

Here’s what you need to know about shaving with electric razors | Source: iStock

There’s more than one way to get a great shave. Electric shavers provide a very convenient way to get the right, close shave you’re looking for. It’s all a matter of having the right tools, choosing the best shaver for you, and getting your technique down pat. Electric shavers are a sound investment, so you can happily stop buying expensive packs of razor heads that you need to change all too frequently. They’re also great for when you’re in a hurry, and if your skin is slightly sensitive. Today’s electric razors are designed to give you the closest shave with little fuss, irritation, or the mess that comes with using shave gel or cream as well as those nasty nicks and cuts. Fashion Beans points out that because the blade never comes into direct contact with your skin, electric shavers are great if you’re prone to breakouts or have sensitive skin. Another plus for electric shavers is they push the skin up and ahead of the cutters, instead of slicing the hairs below the surface as manual razors do, which means that you cut your risk of getting ingrowns — which we can all agree is utterly fantastic.

If you’re considering trying out an electric shaver, these are some simple things to know beforehand.

Above all else, be prepared

To start, make sure your face is free of dirt or sebum (your skin’s natural oil) by using an alcohol-based pre-shave product that includes vitamin E to make sure your skin is protected from any kind of irritation from the shaver, says Men’s Health. Unless you’re using a newer, wet electric shaver (which you can use with or without water) you’ll get the best results from a dry shave if the hair on your face is stiff and dry.

Know that there are two different types: foil and rotary

There are two general types of electric shavers for you to choose from, either foil or rotary. While both deliver fantastic results and a close shave, there are slight differences between the two and it’s simply a matter of which one suits your needs better:

Foil Shavers

If you’re looking for an electric shaver comparable to a manual razor blade that you’re most used to, then a foil shaver might be for you. They’re simple to use and emulate the straightforward back and forth motion of a razor. The shaver has horizontal blades covered with a flexible, perforated foil that captures hair in its tiny slots that are then cleanly sliced by the blades.

Foil shavers are ideal for guys that shave everyday and are looking for an exceptionally close shave. Additionally, they’re thought to produce a closer shave than rotary shavers but the jury is out on that one.

Rotary Shavers

The rotary shaver is probably the electric shaver that you’re used to seeing — it consists of two or three separate rotating heads. The rotary shaver works by grabbing hairs growing in all different directions and easily navigates over the contours of the face. It’s especially great for dealing with tougher, longer hairs if you’ve either waited too long to shave or have very coarse hair. This shaver is ideal for the man who likes to switch his style up between stubble and a clean shaven mug.

What you should look for in a shaver


Electric shaver | Source: Braun


Looking for the right electric shaver can be a little overwhelming because there are so many great ones out there that all promise the best and closest shave. Ask Men cuts through the BS and recommends that you look for these basic factors when buying an electric shaver to get the best job done.

  • Closeness– This refers, of course, to the closest shave and is one of the most important factors to consider. If it doesn’t promise this, then you won’t be satisfied with the product or its results.
  • Convenience and Comfort- Look for one you’ll feel comfortable using and one that is easy to use and incorporate into your daily routine. The whole purpose of purchasing an electric shaver (besides the promise of a close shave) is that buying one will make your life easier.
  • Most recent model– Look for the most recent models with hi-tech features to make your shaving experience better.
  • Speed– This is very important. Look for cycles per minute (CMA) and keep in mind that if it takes you 10 minutes to shave with a manual blade, then it should take you 2-3 minutes with an electric shaver.
  • Durability– Consider the price of the shaver, because they can be a little pricey, in relation to the amount of time it should last.
  • Battery Life– Most newer models say you should expect 50 to 60 minutes of cordless shaving. Don’t settle for anything less, especially if you’re a man who likes to shave on-the-go.

How to do it

A clean shaven man

A clean shaven man | Source: iStock

If you’re not used to shaving with an electric shaver then it might take some practice until you get it down and figure out the right way to shave for you. To get you started with whichever type of shaver you choose (foil or rotary), hold the shaver at right angles to your face. Use your free hand to pull your skin taut so you can properly reach the hairs that are standing upright. Men’s Health recommends this way to shave because it will ensure you get the closest contact with the skin, minimize snagging, and effectively reduce your shaving time.

How to take care of it

Lastly, it’s very important that you take care of your shaver to get the most use out of it and the longest life possible. Because of the buildup of dead skin, dirt, and hair, it’s very important to clean your razor, closely following the instructions that the manufacturer provides so you don’t damage it. Also, be sure to lubricate your razor because the friction of the cutting blades against the foil can lead to easy wear and tear and this friction can irritate your skin, cause discomfort, and generate heat from the shaver. Lubricate it by using a drop or two of fine machine oil before you shave. Some manufacturers provide a bottle of lubricant when you first purchase your shaver. Now you’re ready to get down to business.

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