Social distancing might be the biggest distinguishing feature of summer 2020 - and it’s unlikely anyone will spot stubble from more than two metres away - but lots of people like to feel smooth regardless.
Whether you’re after silky smooth legs (for fashion or sports purposes), or want to banish fuzz from your arms, bikini line or anywhere else, razors are a quick and inexpensive solution for men and women. And the good news is, that while few are cutting edge, there’s one to suit everyone who wants to shave.
So, whether you’re after a reliable cheap and cheerful option, a razor designed for sensitive skin or even a shaver that does it all, we’ve got a gadget that will make you feel great.
How to choose the best razor for you
To pick the perfect razor, you need to consider where you want to shave. It might seem obvious, but there’s a lot of choice out there. While a swivelling head might come in a handy for shaving your legs in a flash, it might prove intimidating for other areas! You might choose a more compact razor if you typically travel a lot, or one that’s built to last with disposable blades only, if you like little waste.
If you have particularly sensitive skin you might want to choose a razor with more blades (which some brands say reduces friction) or one that has a built-in moisturising block. Taking the time to identify your skin’s needs and picking a suitable razor will make the chore of shaving slightly more enjoyable.
Some razors are designed with gender in mind and you don’t need to look hard to find plenty or pink and glittery offerings. But just as these options can work well for men too, while some with more masculine or unisex designs can be a good fit for women. Ignore the hype and get one that best does the job for your needs.
Just as you choose a razor to suit your skin, you might want to consider one that best matches your values too. Perhaps supporting start-ups is important to you, or you like products with smaller environmental footprints. With a little research, you can find a razor you’re happy with on every level.
The best razors you can buy today
‘SkinElixir’ might sound like a potion from the pages Harry Potter but it’s Gillette’s new magical ingredient in the ‘lubrastrip’ of its Venus Extra Smooth Sensitive razor. This ‘ribbon of moisture’ helps to protect legs, arms and anywhere else from nicks and cuts, meaning you can get yourself smooth (if you want) without extra care and attention. Combined with five extra thin blades, the razor is designed to give users super smooth skin with minimal irritation.
Shaving’s a chore for most people, but it can be downright uncomfortable for those with dry and itchy skin. However, Wilkinson Sword’s Intuition Ultra Moisture razor makes life easier as the razor’s four blades are surrounded by a generous block of moisturiser that lathers up when it touches wet skin. Infused with shea butter, it saves users the effort of applying shaving gel and lasts a surprisingly long time…just don’t forget to clean your shower afterwards as the tray can get perilously slippery.
If you’re a minimalist at heart and like your products simple but stylish, Sunny razors might be for you. With five blades and a Lubrastrip, The Teal One razor is designed to deliver a smooth shave and look great in your shower or in your bathroom cabinet, with its Millennial-friendly styling. The handle has a good grip on it and replacement heads are readily available to buy and quite a bit cheaper than comparable offerings, which is interesting as it’s actually made by Gillette. The gender-neutral design is universally appealing and might be a great buy for men who like to shave their body.
FFS Razors is another brand targeting stylish Millennials (probably). Its products come in a range of covetable colours and have 6 blades, aloe vera lubrication strips and a nice ergonomic metal handle. As well as being built to last longer, there's a blade recycling scheme on offer and a cruelty-free promise. Despite its do-good credentials this razor is designed to feel and look nice too. You can even get it engraved. Best of all, the razor is really competitively priced and you can set up a subscription so you never run out of replacement blade heads.
If shaving your legs was a sport, those with a Venus Swirl might have a speed advantage. It’s a little pricier than others by Gillette, but it has a Flexiball so you can shave tricky bits like knees without too much trouble, which makes the whole chore a lot faster. The razor can contour curves for fewer missed hairs and has five blades and the usual ribbon of moisture to protect from cuts. Like most of Gillette’s razors, this one has a soft-grip handle, which is handy in a wet and slippery shower and you can buy almost any of the company’s blade refills, meaning you could combine a moisturising head with the extra-flexible handle if you wanted to be extra swanky.
Most of us have too many products in our bathroom, making Wilkinson Swords’s double-ended razor/bikini trimmer a great multitasking tool. The Silk Bikini’s razor end has five precision blades with water activated hydra renew serum, giving users an easy glide, which leaves skin moisturised. On the other end is a waterproof bikini trimmer with three adjustable lengths that can be used in or out of the shower. It offers a big bang for your buck and works hard for a place in your cabinet.
Let’s face it, many razors are wasteful, but Upcircle’s safety razor is different. Made to last, it has minimal plastic parts and a metal handle that’s built to last. This means that while the initial outlay may be more than plastic equivalents, you won’t need to buy another any time soon. Instead of throwing away whole heads, users simply unscrew the handle from the two-part head and insert a new blade. Yes, it looks a bit daunting, but the company says its single blade provides a close shave. Best of all, when you’re done, you can send the firm your old blades to recycle and get money off replacements. The razor comes in an appealing minty colour that’s designed to be used by anyone, anywhere.
There was a time when pretty much everyone who decided to shave their arms and legs used those orange disposable razors. Thankfully, BIC’s offerings have improved and its triple blade Soleil razors offer a good shave. Available in an appealing four-pack, they have a fixed head, lubricating strip infused with vitamin E and a nice ergonomic design. They’re also incredibly cheap, making them handy for a holiday, but possibly irresponsibly so, because chucking away plastic razors without a second thought is obviously bad for the environment. If you need a disposable option, these are the best of the bunch, but a reusable travel-sized option would be kinder to the planet.
Strawberries are a highlight of summer and not just at Wimbledon. The latest product in the Venus line is perfect for this time of year, as the five-blade razor is surrounded by generous moisture bars that include scented body butters. The combination will not only leave legs smooth and moisturised but smelling delicious. Plus the razor itself is stylish and you can add almost any Gillette head if you get bored of fruity smell but like the look of the handle. The only catch is that you can only buy it at Superdrug, which might not be the most convenient.
Wilkinson Sword’s Intuition Complete claims to do everything brilliantly and for the price, it’s a great deal. The razor has five blades for a close shave and a slim head, making it handy for hard-to-reach, fiddly areas, like underarms. A slimmer head means shaving your legs might take longer, in theory, but the razor has f.a.b. blades, allowing the user to shave forwards and backwards, saving time. The razor also has Skin-Protect gel for a smooth glide and help reduce irritation too.
Holidays to far-flung places may be on hold for now, but if you’re planning a trip for the future, this is the razor to chuck into your suitcase or backpack. Gillette’s dinky Venus Extra Smooth Snap razor has a standard-sized head complete with five blades and a Lubrastrip, but a compact handle so it takes up less space. Despite being tiny, it’s ergonomic and easy to use, plus it fits neatly into a plastic case, to keep your luggage dry and your fingers safe when you’re rummaging in a bag. It’s so good, you’ll probably keep using it once you’re home.