August 3, 2017

Understanding the Difference Between Foil Razors and Rotary Shavers

Understanding the Difference Between Foil Razors and Rotary Shavers

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As you look through all of the electric shaver models available today, you might start to wonder about the differences between rotary and foil heads. Although it is beneficial to try out each style to find out which one suits your skin and hair type, it is really not possible unless you’re willing to purchase each razor type. Instead, you can study the differences between the two blades to discover their main benefits. From there, you can easily make a decision about which shaver head configuration will meet your needs.

What you need to know about foil and rotary razors.

Blade Movements

Foil Electric Razor

Foil Electric Razor

The blades on foil and rotary shavers actually sit just below the upper guides. The guides protect your face from coming into direct contact with the sharp blades. In addition, the guides direct long and short hairs into the shaver head for fast removal by the cutting elements. The way the blades move beneath the guides is the big difference between these two shaver types.

On foil units, the blades spin on shaft that sits just below a secondary guard. The spinning blades feature dozens of edges that remove the shortest of hairs with ease. Rotary shaving blades feature a circular cutting surface that spins around centrifugally. As the blades spin around, the guides capture more hair with each pass.

Guide Cutouts

The guide hole cutouts on foil and rotary blades feature patterns that suit the blade type used for that unit. Each electric razor manufacturer carefully creates and tests the shapes used on the guides. Foil razors often feature a different pattern on each foil to capture every type of hair with a single pass. The patterns may range from hexagon holes to slots and waves.

Rotary razors feature two to three rows of circular cutouts that also prevent missed areas throughout the shave. Slots and holes are the most common type of cutout for rotary shavers due to their ability to eliminate long and short hairs at the same time.

Contouring Abilities

Razor manufacturers recently realized that razor heads need to move and flex over facial contours to create a smooth, clean finish. Otherwise, hairs below the cheekbones, along the jaw line and near the chin are left standing after a lengthy shave session. The way the razor heads move varies across the different rotary and foil shaver varieties.

Foils often independently move from side to side to closely follow facial contours without causing irritation. In addition to the foil movement, the shaver head may bend and flex around the curves. With this system, even using the lightest touch keeps the foils firmly against the surface of your face.

Since many people are inclined to press down while using rotary shavers, the rotary guides and shaving head move independently to gently glide around facial curves without excess pressure. The rotary heads usually flex inward around tight curves, like the chin area, and outward around the cheekbones and jaw line. This is especially helpful while shaving rounded areas, like your neck or cheeks.

The shaving head may pivot around and shift from side to side to prevent missed spots on tight areas. By moving in a circular pattern, the rotary guides can reach more hairs without repeating each pass across your skin.

Maintenance Needs

Rotary Electric Shaver

Rotary Electric Shaver

Both rotary and foil shavers require frequently cleanings to stay in good shape over the years. The way you maintain the shaving heads does vary a bit between each type of razor. Low cost foil shavers usually require full removal of the shaving head to reveal the cutting elements. At that point, you can rinse out, dry and lubricate the cutting block. Higher cost foil shavers may allow you to rinse out the blades without removing the foils. You can use the high power motor to shake dirt and debris loose if running water alone doesn’t do the trick.

Rotary razors, especially wet and dry use models, allow you to blast the cutting element clean without any dismantling required. Vibration technology on many of the models allows you to use the powerful motor to clean out the cutting elements. If the device has a stray hair reservoir, the simple rinsing process cleans that out as well. Many of the high cost rotary models come with a cleaning and charging station that uses proprietary detergents and lubricants to keep the blades in good condition.

Both rotary and foil shavers require regular replacement of the cutting element every twelve to twenty-four months. You can simply pop the cutting element out and replace it with the new one without any special tools.

Although rotary and foil shavers are different in their look and feel, both produce a close shave without aggravating your skin. Unlike disposable shavers, razor burn and itchiness just doesn’t occur with these high tech electric models. –


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