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Can You Cut Yourself With an Electric Shaver?

electric shaver cut

Ever get a little nick from shaving?

Yep, anyone who’s been shaving for a while will have, whether it’s your face, legs, or any other part of your body – it comes with the territory.

Shaving accidents have been around since, well, shaving itself — especially since for thousands of years, sharp-as-knives straight razors (or other sharp implements) were the only shaving tools available.

It wasn’t until the late 19th century that disposable “safety razors” were invented. While an improvement, they were really just straight razors with a special holder that were still dangerously sharp to handle.

In the 1930s, electric razors changed the shaving game. They were easy and safer to use. Though electric razors use sharp blades, they don’t actually touch the skin — they are housed in tiny shearing compartments and foils driven by small motors. 

But does that mean your skin is truly protected from those annoying — and painful — shaving cuts? Let’s take a look.

Cut It Out

Shaving with exposed blades is still wildly popular — and still leads to cuts.

The number of blades in these razors has steadily increased over the years (some even have up to seven blades), and while they’re safer to use than straight razors, shaving cuts with disposals are still prominent.

With electric shavers, cuts are far less an issue, but they can happen.

Electric shavers contain rotating or oscillating blades behind metal foils, either in a rotary design or foil that is one long strip of oscillating blades or rotating disks that are still hidden by strong metal barriers.

Electric shavers have had a strong following since they were first invented in the 1920’s – although, first met with much scepticism, which has now been expelled with the advanced, proven shavers of today. Apart from way fewer nicks and cuts, they shave faster than their disposal razor counterparts and newer models offer close shaves earlier electric shavers lacked. 

While the razors housed within electric shavers never actually touch the skin, they are still very sharp, and because skin isn’t perfectly flat, the blades can sometimes catch those imperfections.

Cuts and nicks happen occasionally, often from pressing too hard on your skin while shaving, shaving over acne or other small bumps on the skin, or from machine malfunctions.

With electric shavers, the much more common result is skin irritation and bumps for some people, but this can pass as the skin adapts. It’s also a good idea to try different electric shavers if you’re first experience using one is uncomfortable, because not all electric shavers are equal.

Protecting Your Skin

The top manufacturers of electric shavers know that cuts and nicks are a concern of consumers when it comes to shaving.

That’s why many go to great lengths to offer products with innovative and reliable safety measures to prevent cuts or any type of irritation from happening. 

Many will include instructions on how best the shave with their electric shaver, including the most effective shaving moments that both lead to a quicker, closer shave and a safe one. 

Some, like Philips Series 9000 rage, offer electric shavers with three multi directional head, super sharp blades, and SkinIQ pressure sensor to ensure you’re not pressing to hard, all combines to shave across the contours of your face. The metal surface if the blades use SkinGluide tech to minimise the chance of scrapping and causing a cut.

Since many cuts or other skin irritation issues can occur when you shave against the grain (the best direction to get a closer shave), electric shavers often make it easy now to shave in both directions easily and safely.

Electric razors like Braun’s Series 7 get high marks for their close shave and also come with a handy cleaning cut that also eliminates the potential for cuts and skin irritation.

The Remington F5-5800, a more traditional foil shaver, and the rotary-driven Philips S9000 have been recognized for the comfortable and worry-free shaves both provide.

The above mention premium electric shavers work with shaving cream – wet or dry. This allows you to add an extra layer of protection against the possibility of a cut, since the shaving lubricant creates an additional barrier between the blades and skin, with less friction.

What You Can Do

But even when using a top of the range electric shaver, you aren’t immune to the occasional small cuts or discomfort, but it’s far less likely than with manual shaving.

Be sure to read your electric razor’s instructions for safety tips, how often you should replace the blades and foils, and how best to clean and maintain your electric shaver overall, and a bonus tip – try a pre shave treatment before every shave.

Related: Stop Shaving Cuts from Bleeding