I keep breaking my Philips shavers.
I have (had?) two – one for home, and one for travel, and they’ve been great. Both were usable in the shower, which is good, but sadly both were susceptible to the stone-hard floors found in the bathroom. They both (and they are different models) broke in the same place:
For something designed to be used in the shower this is a poor show. They should be designed to take the occasional spill to the floor. But that fall is a hard thing to design for, given the mass required for the motor, battery, waterproof cladding, mechanicals and electronics.
So this weekend I went looking or a model with a metal head, but not only does that not seem to exist, but Philips seem to have stopped selling fully waterproof models.
Except for this:
What a compelling redesign. Rather than beefing up the strength of the materials, Philips instead trimmed down on non-essential elements of the shaver. The three heads are attached with a single spindle, and the whole thing is light, strong and, importantly, flexible.
Here’s what happens when you knock it from the bathtub onto the floor, which, distressingly, it took me just a day to do:
The head releases from the body of the shaver, both bounce a little on rubber pieces and nothing is damaged. Fantastic design – a new paradigm.
The downsides are threefold.
First – there are only two models here in Australia (and I had to go to the “shaver store” to see them), and they are both relatively underpowered due to their size and the fact that the three heads are driven by one center rotating part.
Secondly, neither model has a trimmer, but both come with the silly auto-moisturiser. This is something I have yet to fathom – my take is that it is Philips’ way of attempting to have an ongoing sale of ‘razor blades’
Finally recharging is slow – the more powerful of the two models comes with an enormous and vastly ugly recharging and moisturiser replacing unit. It was so monstrous and there was no travel charger option, so I went with the second, lighter and cheaper version. It takes 8 hours to recharge and gives just 20 minutes of power.
Overall the shaver is certainly down on power versus the old shavers, but the sensation of shaving with the three flexi heads is quite different and fantastic. The lightness of the shaver versus the old one means I’ve shed a few more travel pounds, leaving more room for other electronic toys..
But the one to get is this one, which combines more power, longer battery life, faster charging and a trimmer. Now I am still looking for a travel replacement, so I’ll do some hunting….
More pictures of the old and new after the jump
see how much slimmer the new model is