Some men relish running a sharp blade against the contours of their face, while others prefer taking the electric route.
No matter how they feel, shaving is an inescapable chore for most men.
I used to prefer the manual shave, but not any more. I made the switch two years ago when Philips introduced its AquaTouch shaver.
The use of shaving cream, water and an electric shaver brought about new-found freedom and comfort to my face. The heat generated by the moving blades dissipated upon contact with water and being able to wash the shaver under running water simplified the cleaning process.
I still hung on to my trusty Gillette, though.
The combination of using both methods still produced the smoothest shave I have ever had.
However, I might be throwing away my Gillette for good after trying out the new 9000 series from Philips.
During the six weeks of using this model, my manual shaver has remained untouched and will probably not be used any time soon.
The three rotating blades on the S9711 are utterly relentless in their pursuit of removing facial hair, even with one-day-old growth, which is usually a chore to shave.
Compared with my trusty AquaTouch, the shaver's multidirectional heads rest more closely on the face and move more flexibly, giving me the closest shave I have ever had.
There are three power modes to choose from.
I start with the stronger fast mode, then switch to the standard mode for a second pass. A third pass on the lowest setting, if necessary, will clean up any stubborn fine hairs.
Extended use usually heats up an electric razor, but things stayed cool with the S9711.
I also like the battery-level and cleaning-level indicator. There is no longer any confusion as to when to charge the device and I get about 20 shaves on each charge.
This includes the time I spent dunking the shaver into the cleaning cradle, to rinse the shaver with water.
The included cradle is designed to charge the shaver and work with a cleaning gel which also lubricates the blades. Each cartridge is good for three months (assuming you clean it once a week) and a double pack costs $16.
This shaver is the most expensive one I have used, but it is also the best.
Specifications: V-Track precision blades, super lift and cut action, Aquatec wet & dry
Value for money 3/5
Battery life 4/5
This article was first published on Nov 26, 2014. Get a copy of Digital Life, The Straits Times or go to straitstimes.com for more stories.