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With Black Friday fast approaching I thought that I would open up the doctor’s bag again and share an item that may make the perfect holiday gift for someone special in your life.
Like most boys I started developing stubble around 15 years old or so (been so long I really can’t pin the age down more than that).
My initial attempts with keeping my face clean and smooth were primarily relegated to twin blade razors and shaving cream.
Back in the 80s twin blade technology was the most advanced but this now pales in comparison to the number of blades they try to cram in now.
Can you believe a 7-blade razor actually exists??!?!?!
Kind of makes me reminisce about an old MadTV show commercial parody:
Although the shave was indeed smooth, I was not a big fan of using a blade and shaving cream as this would almost always result in some nicks/bleeding.
And then when I finished off with aftershave the resulting burning sensation was something that made me want to stop shaving altogether.
Upping my shaving game.
I ended up asking for and getting an electric shaver, one of the early Braun shavers, that got me through college and medical school.
I would not get as close a shave as I did with a razor but this was a compromise I was happy with as I avoided the mess and skin nicks completely.
I had brand loyalty for bit with Braun and as one model stopped working I would buy the newest model, my last one having a nifty self cleaning base (which had a liquid cleaning solution refill you had to replenish monthly).
The above mentioned Braun shaver is considered a foil-type shaver and when it came time to replace it because of wear and tear I thought I would stick with the same category.
It just so happened that Amazon had a Black Friday sale on Panasonic foil shavers and after doing some research I decided I would jump brands and try it out.
I bought my first Panasonic model on Nov 24, 2011, a 4 blade foil shaver which I apparently upgraded, according to my order history, to a 5 blade improved version courtesy of another Black Friday sale on Nov 26, 2014.
Both of these models have since been discontinued, now replaced with the latest 5 blade model.
Like the Braun, the versions I chose came with an automatic self-cleaning base.
Whereas the Braun model required liquid solution replacement cartridges, the Panasonic cleaning refills were dry, requiring you to fill a water reservoir and replace the cartridge once a month.
It is a bit unfair to compare the Panasonic shaver to my older Braun shaver because of the advancement in technology, but it definitely did provide a closer and quicker shave.
I was converted to Panasonic and that second shaver I bought lasted until the beginning of 2021 when it started showing its age.
At that point the self-contained battery would not hold a charge to complete even a single shave.
Because sending out the shaver to replace the battery would approach the cost of buying a new shaver outright, I thought it was time to get a new one.
I just so happened to mention it in passing to my fiancee who said don’t you dare buy one, now I finally know what to get you for your birthday, which I believe was less than a month away at the time (I am notoriously hard to shop for).
Going in circles.
My fiancee did some research and ended up getting me the top of the line Philips electric shaver, the model 9000 prestige.
Although my entire electric shaving life consisted of foil shavers, I was not close-minded to try other options if they were better.
The Philips model is categorized as a rotary shaver.
There was a bit of a change in shaving habits when I started using the Philips shaver.
My previous foil shavers required an up and down type stroke when shaving parts of my face.
The Philips shaver required a more circular type approach.
Although it felt awkward the first few times, I quickly got accustomed to it and found that I completed my shaving routine much faster.
A lot of this had to do with the design of the shaver head, the Philips head is much larger and therefore covered far more area than my previous foil shavers.
Initially I was worried how the large shaving head on the Philips model would shave my upper lip, but soon found out that I could just position one of the shaving blades to address the area and the other 2 were left free floating.
Again it is a bit unfair to compare the latest technology to a 7 year old model but I felt I got a much closer shave than I had ever before, approaching actual razor-like quality.
Another bonus was that this shaver was far quieter than any of my foil shavers.
In addition, the cleaning cycle for both my foil shavers made a racket lasting 30 minutes or so, so you had to time the cleaning cycle in order to not disturb anyone.
What I initially thought of as a negative ended up being a positive, the lack of an automatic cleaning station.
The Philips shaver required you to run the head under running water after each use (couple of seconds), remove the covering of the shaver head off, and then run water inside (another couple of seconds).
Then after each month of usage you do a deeper clean where you remove each blade complex (simple turn of a ring), wash the blade and outer foil separately, and reassemble.
This typically can be accomplished in under 2 minutes and is very simple to do.
And that’s it.
Unlike my previous shavers I did not have to buy monthly cleaning refills (typically $4/each).
And with my previous Panasonic shavers, the end of the month tended to leave the shaver smelling a bit off as the solution was on its last legs.
The Qi enabled charger could also be used to charge other devices such as smart phones.
Alas there are some negatives that I would like to disclose, none of them were deal breakers for me:
- There is a sideburns trimmer attachment that requires you to remove the main shaving head to install it.
- This is understandable because the size of the main shaving head would be in the way.
- My previous foil shavers had the sideburns trimmer built in and were far more convenient to use.
- The travel case, which is incredibly well made, for this shaver is enormous.
- It has the capacity to hold the Qi charging base, sideburns trimmer attachment and main unit.
- It will not fit in a men’s travel toiletry bag (whereas my foil shavers would fit right in).
When this shaver finally needs to be replaced, I feel like I will stick with the rotary style for my next model.
Curious to see what other items are in my doctor’s bag?
Just open the bag and peer inside, you may find something of use.
NOTE: The website XRAYVSN contains affiliate links and thus receives compensation whenever a purchase through these links is made (at no further cost to you). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Although these proceeds help keep this site going they do not have any bearing on the reviews of any products I endorse which are from my own honest experiences. Thank you- XRAYVSN