Shavers.jpgWhen it comes to the manly art of shaving, do you prefer to use an electric or a manual razor? If you’re not quite sure yet, never fear, for today we offer a selection of key razor considerations that may help you to pick your side. That’s right, today we answer the age-old question of how to choose between an electric or a manual razor! Read on for the full story.

Manual Razors – The Good, the Bad, & the Ugly

Manual Razors.jpgProbably the most significant advantage of the manual razor is its extremely close shave, which is far closer than any you’re ever likely to get with an electric—at least this has been my own experience. Because of the closeness of the shave, you don’t need to shave quite as often, though each shave does take a bit longer than with an electric shaver, and you’re all but guaranteed to receive some nicks and cuts with pretty much every shave.

Manual razors are relatively easy to use & inexpensive to buy (though they do need frequent replacement, thus making their cost add up over time). They’re also light and easy to carry during travel. One limitation of manual razors, however, is that they always demand a wet shave (unless you’ve got the skin of Superman). This, of course, involves the additional cost of shaving gels or foams, as well as aftershave lotion (which is highly recommended!!). I personally always opt for a manual shave whenever I’m going to a wedding or any other event where I’m expected to look extra sharp!

Electric Razors – Advantages & Disadvantages 

Rorary Shaver.jpgThe differences between manual and electric razors are many and varied. Among the key advantages of electric shavers are the speed and comfort with which you can get a relatively close (yet generally nick-free) shave. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I got a cut from mine. I similarly can’t remember the last time I had a manual shave without getting at least a few nicks.

Electric shavers come in rotary or foil models, which each have their own Pros & Cons. You can learn more about these issues from my recent article entitled How to Choose Between a Rotary Or Foil Shaver. One characteristic that applies to both types of electric shavers is that they don’t require the use of foams or gels to shave with, though some models do allow for a wet shave for those that prefer it.

These shavers are also super easy to travel with, and you can literally shave anywhere, any time! I personally have been known to shave in the car (as a passenger, of course), while watching TV, and while just puttering around the house. I’ve never needed aftershave afterwards either, and I’ve rarely had any discomfort from my electric, though some people do find pretty much any type of shave to be somewhat unpleasant.

Although they’re a good bit heavier than manual razors—and often quite noisy, electric shavers are pretty much standard equipment for most men today. They’re a must-have appliance even for those of us that sometimes prefer a manual shave, and many of them even feature a pop-up grooming tool. Of course, proper maintenance is always necessary with electric shavers, but it’s not a major issue. For a few useful tips on electric shaver upkeep, see my earlier article on the Top 5 Tips to Maintain Your Electric Razor.

And that’s the long and the short of it. If you decide that an electric shaver is something you need, Best Buy’s Shavers & Groomers page is a good place to start looking for the right model. There are a number of excellent models currently available, so it’s worth taking the time to investigate at least a few of them before making your selection. Weigh your needs and priorities to determine which features may be right for you, and remember to first familiarize yourself with the differences between rotary and foil models. If you do your due diligence ahead of time, you’re more likely to end up with a highly satisfying shaving selection. Good luck!

Note: The electric shaver in the lowermost image above is one rotary model that’s certainly worth considering. It’s the Philips Series 5000 Dry Shaver, and you can learn all about it by clicking on the link.

Leonard Bond
Leo enjoys writing about everything from secret agents to tech toys and gadgets to professional hockey. Find his reviews and other product related commentary right here on the Best Buy Blog and his latest hockey rants at


  1. I agree manual razor has its own charm and electric shaver really makes the shaving job easy… but as the for the close shave goes I think still Stright Razor and Safety Razor takes the job…

  2. I have used various types of shavers over time, and I find that the selection of shaving utensil should be based on type of hair to be shaved.  I have thicker structure of hair and if I used a rotary shaver I feel as though it is ripping the hair instead of cutting it, this is where a foil shaver works better, however it takes several passes to get a smooth cut. I tried the manual multi-blade shavers and found that they get clogged fast. I found the cost and effectiveness of canned gels and foams was getting too expensive and not superior to the old ways, and in one case messy . (avoid laying the cans on their side in a drawer)

    I decided to return to good old fashioned single blade razer, with fine adjustments on the blade and I use a brush with either tubed shaving cream or a solid dry shaving soap, which last me significantly longer than the cans at a fraction of the price.

    When it comes to cuts, the problem is easily solved. Switch to cold water when rinsing the blade, this will tighten the metal and your skin, and be careful, it;s still sharp.

    I also have a battery operated foil shaver that I use in emegencies when I travel.

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