Product: Braun Series 7 - 790cc Pulsonic Shaver
Price: $195.97 (Amazon)
Rating: Strong Recommend*
The hair on my head, and a little more sparingly across my face, is so thick it could possibly be used to pin small insects. And because of this fullness of filament, all of the electric shavers I've tried in the past failed to do an acceptable job of trimming my face compared to the low-tech razor blade. But I've always wished I could ditch the expensive habit of cartridge based razors (I've yet to delve into the world of straight shaves) but still get a consistent finish opposed to the patchy Paul Pierce-style chin every other model has left me with, requiring touch-ups with disposable razor. The Braun Series 7's 790cc is the closest I've gotten to a post-disposable razor solution...
The Braun 790cc Pulsonic Shaver shares some DNA with my disposable razor: inside the OptiFoil holes are Gillette blades doing all the sharp cutting. 10,000 micro-vibrations per minute and Braun's ActiveLift technology partner with a flexible swiveling head to navigate in and around the face for facial clean up duty. Despite all this technology within, turning on the 790cc shaver is sort of like starting a Prius: it's so quiet, it's easy to be left wondering if the shaver is actually on until you put it closer to your face.
I don't have sensitive skin (I can practice the death-defying shaving technique of using just wet skin without lather without any noticeable repercussions), but I'm guessing even the tender-dermal set will benefit without any irritation while using the 790cc. During several test shaves I felt nary a pull, tug, or even the suggestion of pain while trimming down my face. What was most notable compared to other electric shavers I've tried in the past was the 790cc didn't require multiple drive-bys to finish off all the hairs; most sections required no more than two passes, including those annoying flat hairs on the neck, to leave what felt like a nearly-razor shave smooth finish. And that meant for the first time using an electric model, the time spent from start to finish matched or beat using a manual razor shave.
At the base of the handset is a small, but easily legible LCD display showing both charge state and whether your shaver needs to be dropped in for power-up or cleaning. At full charge and depending upon how often/long you require per shave, the 790cc can go for a full week between charges.
The base station itself is a hefty affair, hiding a slot for an alcohol based cleaning solution cartridge which keeps the 790cc optimally and hygienically ready in between shaves (just 25 seconds from clean to auto-dry all done within the base). The auto-cleaning function should extend the life of the razor while keeping cutting efficient primed; the trade-off, at least for a small apartment dweller such as myself, is it takes a lot of room up in the bathroom. But there's also an option to simply wash the Braun shaver with water from the sink, as the unit is fully sealed, meaning I can store away the base throughout the week until required.
A pop-up trimmer is useful for all your sideburn, beard, and...ahem...manscaping needs.
Overall, it's easy to rate the Braun Series 7 - 790cc Pulsonic Shaver as the best electric shaving unit I've ever tried. It's fast, quiet, comfortable, and most importantly leaves a smooth face without the fuss and careful do-overs of other models. The 790cc is priced at the top end of electric shavers, but considering it performs so well, it embodies the axiom of "you get what you pay for", and in the long run should save users money compared to the cumulative cost of disposable cartridge razors.
Pros: Satisying close shave offering nearly the same quality as a razor shave, comfortable ergonomics of not too heavy nor not too light, impressively quiet operation, auto clean and lubrication system makes for near no-hassle daily operation.
Cons: Bulky base unit requires plenty of space, top-tier price, Clean & Renew system requires refills
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. This specific product was provided by the manufacturer for testing and review purposes.