The Panasonic Series 900+ (also known as the Arc 6), is the Japanese company’s first-ever six-blade foil electric shaver and has been designed to tackle longer, more dense stubble. This is something Panasonic -- somewhat strangely -- claims has been made more common due to “the increase of people working from home”.
Combining Japanese blade tech with the brand’s ultra-fast linear motor, the Series 900+ promises to be a cut above any other electric shaver on the market, chomping through up to 80% of hairs in just one pass and delivering long-lasting smoothness even after eight hours.
But are six blades really better than five, or any other number of blades? Let’s find out…
Panasonic Arc6 Shaver Review: Price And Availability
Panasonic's Series 900+ shaver was launched in the summer of 2022 and comes in two different configurations, the shaver-only ES-LS6A and the more expensive ES-LS9A, which ships with a dedicated cleaning and charging station as well
While the latter retails with an RRP of £499.99 / US$499.99 / AUS$730, we can’t find the cheaper configuration available online at the moment apart from at OnBuy.com, where it’s sold for a whopping £589 / US$715 / AUS$1050 so we’re assuming Panasonic has released this in limited markets. However, the more expensive model is currently only £380 / US$424 / AUD$680 on Amazon. Those in the UK can find it cheaper still on Very.co.uk for just £299.99.
For the sake of transparency, we tested the pricier 900+ ES-LS9A model for this review.
Panasonic Arc6 Review: Design
Sporting an impressive (and slightly overkill) number of blades, the Series 900+ ES-LS9A is one of the world’s most innovative electric shavers. On the flip side, this unique cutting-edge design does mean it's a somewhat chunky bit of kit. The shaver’s head is enormous when compared to other razors out there, making it a little top-heavy. Still, this doesn’t really impact performance or comfort, thankfully.
In terms of aesthetics alone, the Series 900+ is an elegant-looking device, touting a premium matt finish and a very useful LCD display that’s hidden under the front of the handle, shining through when switched on to give it a high-end feel. And that’s exactly what you’d expect from a product that retails for nearly £500. Phew.
The charging station that’s included with the Series 900+ ES-LS9A also works a treat and proves very satisfying to gorp at when it’s sitting on your bathroom counter looking all important and expensive.
Panasonic Arc6 Review: Performance
Having more blades than most shavers could even dream of, the Series 900+ should, in theory, provide a closer shave that requires less effort, fewer glides and thus less irritation.
It works via an arrangement of two finish blades, two lift blades and two thick stubble blades that are coated with titanium and designed to scoop up and capture long, flat-lying hairs found on the jaw and around the neck.
Another neat little feature is the Series 900+’s beard sensor tech, which comprises a sensor that detects beard density and thickness and adjusts the power of the motor 14 times per second to ensure it doesn’t nip skin or tug on hairs as it follows the contours of the face, rotating from side-to-side.
In our tests, the shaver didn’t fail to disappoint and the results were impressive. Shaving feels easy as the device slices its way through stubble like butter, requiring less effort. This might be because Panasonic says the Series 900+ makes use of blades that have been “nano-sharpened” to just 30 degrees, creating an angle that keeps the blades close to the hair root. It’s also very comfortable to use, and because you’re not needing to push hard onto your skin to get shorter hairs, irritation is kept to a minimum.
Longer and flat-lying hairs are cut but not quite as well as we were expecting seen as though Panasonic has introduced the titanium-coasted blades for this very reason. On the other hand, this is an issue for most electric shavers so it’s not like it’s anything out of the ordinary.
Lastly, we loved that the Series 900+ can be used wet as well as dry. Used with a nice shaving gel, it glides even more effortlessly than it does during a dry shave, resulting in an even more pleasant shaving experience. This is especially handy if you suffer from sensitive skin and irritation.
Panasonic Arc6 Review: Verdict
The Panasonic Series 900+ boasts some very impressive tech that results in a very close and comfortable shaving experience. Sure, it’s pretty expensive, but if you’re looking to take the pain and irritation out of traditional razor shaving.
Six blades might seem a bit unnecessary, and it does add unwanted bulk to what is a pretty sexy device, but we’re confident that it’s this innovative design that provides a super close shave while making it one of the most comfortable electric shavers on the market, even for those who suffer from sensitive skin.