Electric Shaver vs Manual Razor

Electric Shaver vs Manual Razor
Electric Shaver vs Manual Razor

There is nothing quite like the fresh-faced feeling of a quality smooth shave to start the day, but there is still some debate as to how best to achieve this. Some prefer using the manual approach using warm water, shaving foam or gel and a razor; others prefer to take the easy option and let an electric shaver take care of it. But which is best?

Now both types of shaver have their own advantages and disadvantages, and really it comes down to personal preference. In fact, some people prefer to use both – wet shaves for the smoothest, closest shave, and an electric shaver for when speed or convenience is more important.

A Close Shave

Most people will agree that to get the closest, smoothest shave possible you will need to use a wet shaver. As the blade is in direct contact with your skin, it can cut closer than any electric shaver can. This is because the protective cover on the electric shaver’s cutting head keeps the blade slightly distant from the hair. Electric shaving technology has improved over the years, but it still can’t quite match the traditional wet shave method.

Verdict: Wet Shave

The Fastest Shave

In general, an electric shaver can be quicker than a wet shave – although some electric shavers are designed to be used with shaving foams or gels, so it’s not always black and white. A thorough shave with a wet razor can take up to 3-4 times longer than using a good quality electric shaver.

Verdict: Electric Shaver

Ease of Use

While both types of shaver are easy to use, a wet shave with a razor requires more preparation. With a razor, you need to wet the skin, and then apply either a shaving cream or gel before you can start shaving. Then once you’ve finished shaving, you need to clean and dry your face. With an electric shaver, you just switch it on and start shaving straight away. The electric shaver is also less likely to cause skin irritation or cuts.

Verdict: Electric Shaver

Shaving the Cost

A typical razor such as the Gillette Mach 3 will cost around £20, including enough spare blades to last a few months. After these are used, replacements will cost around £5-7 per month depending on how often you replace the blades, plus the costs of shaving gel or foam. An electric shaver costing £50-100 may seem expensive initially, but after a year the costs even out – and eventually the electric shaver becomes more economical.

Verdict: Electric Shaver

Overall Winner

WIth 3 out of 4 “wins”, the electric shaver is the overall winner and the best choice for most men. The speed and ease of use of an electric shaver outweighs the slight loss in the closeness of the shave that you can achieve. In addition, over a year the electric shaver will end up being cheaper to use.

That said, if you are happy to spend a little more time and effort using a wet razor and want the smoothest possible shave, then the old-fashioned way is going to be the best.