You might prefer a bit of rock-star stubble, a neat, carefully-trimmed full beard, or a clean, smooth shave, but no matter your signature look, finding the right tools to suit your skin and facial hair can be a bit of a prickly issue. With so many options now on the market, and an increasing number of new-kid-on-the-block brands popping up out of nowhere, it can be hard to choose the right electric shaver for your needs. But whether you’re a first-time shaver, a former manual razor devotee looking for a change, or you’ve used an electric shaver in the past but haven’t really known whether it’s the best for your needs, we’re here to help.
Firstly, there are two main types to choose from. Foil shavers, which cut the hair as it enters holes in the foil, are generally better for sensitive skin, as they’re less abrasive and are less likely to cause razor burn than rotary shavers. Rotary shavers, meanwhile, employ rotating circular cutters to do the job, and these tend to be better for gents with facial hair that’s on the coarser side. Whilst generally, the best electric shavers are a matter of personal preference, the features of foil vs rotary shavers are specially designed for different uses so this really is worth keeping in mind.
Think about where and when you’ll likely be using your shaver, as that informs what power source would be best. Most shavers on the market are now rechargeable, which is great if you’ll be using it both at home and away, and means you won’t have to keep topping it up with new batteries. Some can be used both on their rechargeable battery and from the mains, which is good if they’re running low and you don’t have time for a full charge before you head out. Battery shavers are fine for occasional convenience, for example if you find yourself in a country you don’t have an adapter plug for, but for everyday, a rechargeable shaver is the better choice.
Wet and dry shavers can be used (you guessed it) either wet or dry, and most of our picks feature this function for sheer versatility, but you’ll find some very good dry shavers in there too — it’s all down to preference.
Once you've decided on your ideal electric shaver, make sure you check out our best beard oils for 2018 to complete your morning routine.
From trusted brand Philips, this rotary electric shaver packs the power of typically higher-end models into a decidedly more purse-friendly package. Quick, comfortable shaving is what this shaver delivers — it charges fast, so you’ll be set up in no time, the shave itself is smooth with little irritation, and when you’re done, the unit is easily cleaned with a quick flip of the head and a rinse under the tap.
However, reviewers have noticed that is shaves better wet than dry, so if you prefer a dry shave, the Remington PF7500 shaver further down our list is a good alternative and also comes in at a lower price point.
For a comfortable dry shave on sensitive skin, this Remington electric shaver ticks all the boxes. For a very reasonable price, it offers an impressively long battery life and a solid-feeling build quality. Reviewers love that it provided an impressively close and smooth shave for a dry shaver, and while its accompanying trimmer isn’t the best, it’s a nice inclusion all the same if you don’t have to close-shave for a period of time.
The construction of this foil shaver makes it our best electric shaver for sensitive skin. With its three pressure-sensitive elements making shaving effective and responsive, and a micro-comb to capture a good number of hairs with each stroke, it prioritises comfort by minimising abrasion, and gets extra bonus points for being usable in the shower. If you don’t need the wet and dry functionality, the Remington Comfort Pro Foil is a gentle and budget-friendly alternative.
This cordless electric shaver might be small on price, but it certainly isn’t small on functionality. Some users have even said that it converted them from years of wet shaving with a razor, high praise indeed. It’s easily charged by USB — perfect for on the move, you can even charge it in the car — and users loved that the rubber grip made it easy to use in the shower. An all-round great budget buy, although sensitive-skinned dudes might prefer to pay a little extra for the kind-on-skin Braun Series 3 ProSkin.
This USB-powered marvel, chargeable from a mains/USB plug or laptop, is our best electric shaver for travel. One hour of charging gives you 120 minutes of shaving time, and thanks to its wet-and-dry capabilities, you can multi-task by shaving in the shower, so there’s no need to worry if you’re strapped for time before a big event. It also politely collects the hair while you shave to minimise cleanup. Last, but not least, it’s very quiet, perfect if you’re an early riser sharing a room. Good all-round for home and away.
With three sensitivity modes for a close shave that’s tailored to your skin and facial hair, and automatically adjusting “intelligent sonic technology”, the Braun Series 7-790cc is just the ticket for a foolproof shave. The lifting action captures hair even in nooks and crannies, so you won’t miss a spot, and the advanced foil gets extra close for a smooth finish. Best of all, this shaver cleans, charges, and lubricates itself at the touch of a button. Expensive, but worth it.
This slightly alien-looking shaver has been developed with the help of dermatologists to provide the closest, smoothest shave, even on irritable skin. 100% waterproof, it can be used with gel or foam in the shower for a slick finish, and the anti-friction comfort rings help to protect the skin as the razor glides along, picking up even flat-lying hairs in its wake. Handy for longer beards, moustaches, and sideburns, there’s also a precision trimmer included. If you have easily-irritated skin but don’t get on with a foil shaver, go for this one.
Check out our guide to the best men's face moisturisers to complete your daily skincare routine.