Razors are one of those devices we tend to take for granted- they are there, in our bathrooms, waiting for us to use them.
There is actually a huge range and variety available, however, as anyone with a delicate or awkward skin will attest, and they all serve their specific niche of the market. Below we look at some of Braun company award-winners in each category.
Braun Company: Who are They?
Spend any time doing any type of research on razors, and the name Braun is bound to pop up. Usually, they are particularly mentioned for manufacturing some of the best foil razors in the world today.
Ironically, they also manufacture a range of kitchen appliances and calculators- but people always come back to their razors and epilators as the key brand association. They’re a razor market giant- which may leave the curious wondering how they got there.
Ninety years of hard work and quality manufacturing is one key answer. Braun was founded in 1921, and they have evolved from one small workshop right through to the global giant we know today. Humble beginnings for a company that makes over a billion dollars in profit annually.
The raised ‘A’ trademark that’s now synonymous with the brand first featured in 1935, on one of the first battery powered radios to hit the market.
Surprisingly, they didn’t offer their first dry razor until the fifties- although that same design had in fact been being worked on decades before. Featuring an oscillating block cutter under foil, in many ways this marks the birth of the foil razor, not just Braun’s entry into the razor market.
1962 saw the birth of the ‘sixtant’, the first razor to sell over 10 million copies in a decade long period, and the unit that truly established Braun as leaders in razor technology.
Much of their manufacturing moved from Germany to the US in the 1950s, one of the biggest trans-Atlantic partnerships at the time. Today, many of the product lines are made in China, although the Series 7 and several other razor ranges remain produced in Germany.
Their stylish and often ground-breaking designs have had knock on effects worldwide- the calculator they released in 1976 is, in fact, credited with inspiring Apple designs 3 decades later.
Epilators entered the Braun repertoire in the early nineties, when they took over a French manufacturing firm named Silk-Epil. Their legacy lives on today in the flagship brand name for the Braun epilator series.
It was also the birth of their Oral-B brand, although the electronic dental aides would remain under the Braun banner for a while longer.
Taken over by the Proctor and Gamble group in 2005, the following year saw the release of the Braun Series 7 razors, a favourite with their male market that persistently comes top in many surveys even to the present day.
Series 7 were also the first razors with their ‘pulsonic’ technology designed to minimise razor rash and discomfort after shaving.
Braun aren’t only known for their electronics, but also for the ‘Braun prize for technical design’, an award to encourage young designers.
With well over 100 design awards to their own name, and a stable of over 8000 patents, the company today thrives on in a way the pioneers of 1920 probably could never have imagined.
Why Braun, anyway?
It’s easy to call oneself a market giant- but what do Braun deliver that keeps bringing users back. As we mentioned above, they are widely credited with the design of the foil razor, and common consensus repeatedly places their standard electric foil razors as world class.
They rely on a history of precision engineering, with enough change to remain modern without abandoning the key points of the razors that made them famous.
You will find repeated mentions of consumers replacing their Braun models after a decade of daily service- and it’s that reputation for solid, long lasting builds that makes them a fan favourite too.
They’ve managed to keep that reputation across the corded and cordless markets, too, which is quite an achievement.
The Most Popular Braun Electric Shavers
Firstly, it’s rather important to note that there is no such thing as a ‘rotary’ Braun shaver. Braun’s electric shavers are all designed to work in straight lines with foils, as the company believes this creates a closer, better shave that’s more intuitive for the user.
However, they have some fantastic electric shavers for you to consider if this style works best for you.
Foils work with a series of small ‘knives’, or rotary blades, under the surface of the foil, to provide a close shave easily.
Although they are generally called knives, they should actually best be compared to the cutting action of scissors, and share a lot of similar action with the tweezers that power the plucking behind top epilators.
Braun is, in fact, known for its foils, and widely considered the best brand out there for this technology, as well as the innovator of the first well known foil razor out there.
There is no right and wrong answer when it comes to foil vs rotary. In the end it will always come down to your personal preference based on what works the best for your skin, and will vary from person to person.
In general, electric razors may not give you as close a shave as a traditional razor, and rotaries will likely shave you slightly less then foils, but they also provide less razor burn and are less prone to stimulate the development of razor bumps.
Because the simple fact of that barrier [the foil or the rotary head] means that you won’t ever get as close a shave with an electric razor as with a disposable or straight razor, manufacturers use several clever tricks to try and bridge that gap.
These generally revolve around systems designed to guide the maximum amount of hair up and into the cutting mechanism with less passes needed.
Generally, when you are dealing with any razor line, if there is a model or series you can guarantee that the cutting action will be similar among each of the individual razors in that model line/series stable.
This explains the multitude of ‘Series 7’ and ‘Series 9’ designations Braun has, and can give you a strong indication of alternate options to try if you find a razor that’s almost but not quite what you are searching for.
With all that in mind, here’s the best of Braun’s [foil] electric razors.
Series 9 9095cc
Ah, Braun’s series 9. These are the top of the top ranges available from Braun currently, and their flagship product for 2017. This does come with a slightly raised price tag, of course. ‘Synchrosonic’ technology promises 40000 cutting actions in a minute and the closest of close shaves.
Solid head lock button
Close shave easily acquired, better than most other Braun ranges
Shape is pleasant to handle and hold
Cleaning station, cord and cordless use, and a host of features
Expensive next to the Series 7 razors
Some users don’t like the flashy chrome design
Head small compared to other razor brands
So, for all of Braun’s marketing hype it is pretty clear that their customers do still have a very fond spot in their hearts for the Braun series 7.
If you’re serious about shaving, it may be worth experimenting with both to see what works best with your individual skin, and the series 9 does in general appear to deliver a closer shave with less irritation.
However the series 9 does represent some of the absolute latest technology that Braun has available, and can be considered a top of the line electric shaver.
Series 7 797 cc
Well, the box promises just about everything except making coffee while you shave. This is a razor that can be used either wet or dry, although that particular feature isn’t the focus of its operation.
This multi-angle electric razor also uses Braun’s ‘pulsonic’ technology to vibrate your way to a closer shave.
Fully rechargeable and cordless
Gentle on most skins- less razor burn
5 speed settings
Multi angled head
The cleaning station is loud
Overall loud operation
Slow compared to a traditional razor
Edge and small grips can make it difficult to know exactly where you are shaving
This razor ships with all the bells and whistles- a cleaning station with the charger and all. Most men opt to use this only once or twice a week for maximum hygiene, simply tipping the razor for other days.
While it’s not your cheapest option, the series 7 797 cc is widely regarded as worth the extra few dollars it costs above the 790, and most men who use it love it.
Braun Series 5 5090cc
Don’t be quick to down-judge the series 5 because it’s obviously older and cheaper then the other two top picks we opted for. Men’s skin is all different, and the shaving needs to match are too.
The Series 5 is still a strong contender in the electric foil razor field, and it’s worth considering if you’re looking to purchase.
Fully waterproof and can be used in the shower
Flex-tech ensures responsiveness of blade to facial counters
Famed Braun ‘micro lift’ comb ensures close shave
Incorporated trimmer for moustache, sideburns and beard
Rechargeable, corded or cordless use, with cleaning station
Some people find it a ‘pulling’ razor, depending on skin type
Several passes may be needed
Less close shave then some products
On-off switch in an awkward position
It’s surprisingly difficult to get anyone to say something bad about the Series 5. Sure, it hasn’t got all of Braun’s latest bells and whistles, but it doesn’t come at the same price tag either. What it does have is the same Braun foil razor quality, and in the end this matters a ton more for the user.
Braun’s Wet&Dry electric shavers- our favourites
Advocates of either shaving style-wet or dry- will be quick to tell you why their particular method is preferable to the other. Both have pros and cons, and it mostly comes down to your skin and preference.
Many men [and ladies] do prefer the option to do both, particularly if you’re investing in an electric razor. These versatile picks will work for either shaving method, no problem.
We couldn’t leave the ladies off the list. After all, shaving technology is as important to female users as male.
While the Series 9 of the Braun Silk-epil is, as with the guy’s series 9, the latest offering from Braun it is in fact an epilator not razor, and you have to look a bit further down the product range to find their razor. However, it’s a crowd favourite amongst the ladies.
Can be easily used in the bath for maximum convenience
Floating foil technology allows for a close shave
Easy to rinse clean
Simple to use
Battery operation can be aggravating
No separate battery trap door, case must be opened
More ideal for legs then armpits
Ladies’ razors suffer somewhat next to men’s ranges, but this Braun offering performs surprisingly well to the satisfaction of most who try it.
Braun Series 3 3040s
For a product ranked ‘low’ in the Braun marketing squads ‘fancy’ books, the Braun series 3 is an effective wet and dry shaver that many men love. With a comfortable feel in the hand even when wet and a durable finish, it remains a surprising Braun favourite.
NFL endorsement makes a nice tie in if it interests you
Micro-comb technology to reduce razor rash
Uses Braun’s Senso-foil technology
Fits naturally in the larger male hand
Designed without excessive indentations for hair to catch
Less effective than some of the other Braun offerings
Some feel it’s more effective wet then dry
The button can be difficult to manipulate
Can require multiple passes on tough beards
Braun Series 7 740s
Braun fans already know there’s no surprise that a second Series 7 entry made it to our top-picks list. The Series 7 remains a firm product range beloved by many users, and this combination wet/dry offering stands out in its genre.
Interchangeable base station with other Series 7 razors
Travel Case included
Seems to discourage ingrown hairs
Adjustable height settings
Trimmer is slightly fragile and prone to breaks
No Clean and Renew base
Can be noisy next to other Braun offerings.
Epilators can be an amazing alternative choice for ladies who want to lengthen the period of time they can go between ‘shaves’ without opting for a full on wax. Brain make a few epilators to suit a range of tastes and budgets, so here is some of our favourites.
Braun 5280 Xella
Despite being an older model, this remains a crowd favourite for having a gentle touch- epilators are not always kind to the user. Soft tips and the ability to cope with shorter hairs also helps.
Massage rollers manipulate the skin with mini pulses before and after the tweezers pass, ensuring as little discomfort as possible.
Massage rollers and cooling glove for extra-painless hair removal
2 sizing options
Extra heads in box, each with a slightly different design to help you find the best for you
Fully washable for maximum hygiene
Corded model- mayor may not suit the user
Flat head is more difficult to use if inexperienced
Hairs do not drop through and may need to be removed during use
More prone to pinching then other epilators
Braun Silk-epil 7
This unit is an innovative option for an epilator, fully submersible during use so you can epilate in the bath- and miss out on a few ouchies. This a powerful cordless Braun epilator that’s been on the market for a decade and fully stands the test of time.
Can be used in the bath
Attachments for bikini line and underarms
Built in light [not adjustable] Less painful then similar models
Ships without instructions- not for a novice
Slow compared to some other epilators
Underperforms on damp skin
Some users experience significant breakage rather than removal
Braun SE 3170
If you’re looking for a no-frills, no-fuss epilator in the Braun range, the SE3170 could be for you. The replacement to a highly popular series 3 epilator, it’s standing up to scrutiny the way it’s predecessor did quite well.
Offers high frequency massage to assist with hair removal
Some of the higher end Braun features included
Works on fine hair
Has length limitations unlike some other epilators
Head is prone to detaching
Can overheat under stress
Braun’s most popular beard trimmers.
In an era where the manly beard is making a comeback- but only tamed and pampered- a beard trimmer can be a lad’s best friend. If you’re looking to tame your tangled beard, these three Braun beard trimmers may well be exactly what you are looking for.
Braun BT 5090
The BT 5090 offer a simple out the box beard trimmer with no frills and fuss. While a limited accessory range may disappoint those looking for a lot of gadgets, it gets results guys love. The precise millimetre combs remain a crowd favourite.
Simple and budget friendly
Washable under running water
25 length settings
Works corded and cordless
Comb switching needed for beards of varied length
Doesn’t catch trimmings
Braun BT 3040
Braun’s entry-level beard trimmer remains a popular choice for those exploring the world of maintaining their beards. It’s unusual in entry level products, as the combs are graded to 0.5 mm and offer 39 different length settings- the man who wants his beard kept precise may just be looking for this baby.
Enormous range of settings and precise calibration
Lifetime sharp blades
Can also cut hair
Can be fiddly to operate with so many length settings
Narrow head needs more passes
No storage case
Braun Series 7 Beard Trimmer
Occupying the higher end of Braun’s offerings, the Braun Series 7 trimmer surprisingly offers less height settings then in the lower range offerings. It is clearly pitched at executives, with a smart plug that will adapt to all voltage ratings and a travel case included.
Dual battery system ensures more power.
12 length settings
Detailing trimmer can nick skin if not carefully angled
Made in China
Doesn’t feel as high end as expected
Overall, the Series 7 caters well for a man who travels and needs discreet, travel-easy shaving.
Braun’s best wet shavers
Wet shaves, once considered old fashioned next to the fancy new power of the electric razor and the disposable razor, are steadily making a comeback amount men who subscribe to a certain art of manliness-type feel.
Braun are, of course, particularly known for their foil razors and not the manual razor that most artisan shavers choose.
However, if you are keen for the benefits of a fully wet shave without the hassle of navigating the steep learning curve that is the ‘cutthroat’ razor, Braun’s unique Waterflex razor may be the electrical equivalent for you.
Braun Waterflex razor
No surprises that the Waterflex is one of Braun’s Wet & Dry options, really. It’s a very slim line, simple look, but sports the rotatable head of a high end product.
Has the Acti-trimmer feature so beloved in the Braun range
100% waterproof for cleaning and shower use
Lightweight but feels robust
Cheaper than many Braun razors
Shave head is smaller and less flexible then other Braun products
Many feel the original head is inferior to the replacement, adding to the cost.
Can miss hairs on the curves
For a razor that’s cheaper than most of the Braun range, the Waterflex represents a good entry level wet and dry Braun shaver. While it has a few problems, it’s solid for the money and well worth investigating if you want the quick and easy wet shave option.
Braun has long been one of the dominating shaving brands out there- many will actually argue that they are the best foil razor company in existence.
Obviously every skin type, beard and purpose is different, so there is always a little experimentation needed to determine which range offers exactly what you need along with a comfortable shave, but when dealing with Braun you can rest assured you are purchasing from a trusted company with a name for razors.