Philips Series 5000 Review
Philips are a big deal in the world of male grooming. Theirs are some of the best-designed, high-quality products on the market. What is more, they are pretty much always well-balanced between quality and economy. You will generally get a lot for not much.
That is certainly the case with their s5530/06 Series 5000 Turbo Electric Shaver. It is solidly in the middle of the range for electric shavers – you can get models that are far better designed and built, that work a lot better, and deliver a better final product, that come in at hundreds of pounds.
But you will struggle to get something as good as the Series 5000 Turbo with change from a hundred quid (which is exactly what the Series 5000 gives you.)
It’s a hell of a feat for such a reasonable price. It offers great value, paired with convenience and decent performance, making it by far one of my favourite electric shavers – something that hopefully will become clear in this Philips Series 5000 review.
Philips Series 5000 Specs
The s5530/06 Series 5000 Turbo Shaver, as a package, is far more than a run of the mill electric shaver. You get a Series 5000 Turbo Shaver, a precision trimmer, a protective cover and user manual in one package.
The Philips 5000 has an advanced engineered rotary shaving system, designed to capture and cut hair that grows in different directions. Its flexible, independent heads mean that it will always shape to, and follow, your face’s contours. In fact, they move in five different directions, which should more than suffice for anyone. The flexible head design provides a smoother and gentler shave while also making shaving almost effortless.
This is all far better than you would get with a foil shaver. Electric shavers generally come in these two types – foil or rotary technologies. Both will serve you well enough, giving you a smooth, clean shave. However, foil shavers cut hairs using a linear, straight line motion. This makes it hard to properly capture, lift and cut hairs that are growing in different directions.
The Philips Series 5000 s5530/06 Shaver uses a rotary cutting system designed specifically to go easy on the skin, keeping things gentle and smooth, whilst also capturing, lifting and cutting all hairs, evenly. This is as it should be with rotary shaving, with a good rotary shaver – they will generally give a far more even outcome.
The Philips 5000 also has a turbo setting, for those of us whose hair isn’t perfect, and for whom maintaining any look is a lot of effort. No matter your beard type, the turbo setting should be able to trim it impeccably. Simply flip the Turbo Shave setting on (it’s easy to do) and the Philips 5000 will enjoy a ten percent boost in speedy, effective trimming action.
Ten percent may not sound like a lot, but, as I’ll go through below, it makes a massive difference.
The shaver itself is completely waterproof, for those of you who like to shave in the shower. It will give you nearly an hour of cordless run time per charge and will tell you everything you need to know as you use it via its attractive LED display. This is all due to Philips’ commitment to keeping things convenient for their customers.
We all have busy lives. There is a lot to do, without having to fuss around cleaning our razors with any kind of labour, and without having to charge your shaver every time you want to use it. You can wash the Series 5000 under direct water, give it a quick wipe, and be on your way. Or you can shave in the shower and let nature take its course. You can also probably manage anything from 10-15 shaves with a single charge (depending on how long you take and/or how intricate your beard is!)
As it stands, the specs check out nicely. They show a good balance between convenience and end result, and between quality and economy. But what is it like to live with the 5000?
Using the Philips 5000
There are a few things that really stick out with the Series 5000.
The first is that extra ten percent turbo charge. I didn’t expect much from it. The Series 5000 already gives a very good shave, so what need is there to boost it?
Then I tried it.
It’s completely unnecessary in most cases. However, when it comes to thick under-chin hair, or particularly dense hair up top, it is fantastic. It will scythe through it all efficiently and easily, giving you as neat a trim on your trouble spots as on the easy bits.
I also really liked the precision trimmer attachment, designed to give you a little more utility from the Series 5000. The main head simply clicks off the unit and then you can attach the precision head, which turns a standard rotor shaver into the full-on barbershop mentioned above. Use this for trimming moustaches, goatees and sideburns, or simply for edging your beard. I used it for the latter purpose and found that it gave straight, clear lines where I wanted them. It’s perfect for maintenance.
The battery is also good, though there are better out there. A bog-standard shaver with no fancy settings can give you more. However, considering what it does, and that what it does will be a big power drain, the battery is good. It takes about as much time to charge the Series 5000 as you will get using it, but charging it for an hour every fortnight or so (if you shave every day) really isn’t much of an issue. It also means that it’s handy on the go – if you want something you can pack in your gym bag or use at the office, it will serve you very well indeed.
The rotary system itself is magnificent. It is designed to actually lift hairs away from the skin before and as it cuts. This means that the blades will actually cut the hair underneath the surface skin level, giving you the smoothest shave you can possibly get. You will feel incredibly clean and fresh after using it, with no five o’clock shadows and no awkward stubble.
Combine this with the rotary blades themselves and the turbo boost and you have just about the cleanest shave I’ve ever come across.
The Series 5000 is also pretty good looking and handles really well. It has a large, comfortable shaving head. This is gentle on the skin. The body of the shaver itself looks almost sculpted – it is sleek and elegant, thoroughly modern looking. It fits very nicely in the hand, giving you full control and further decreasing the effort level of using it. I’ve used similar models before that have seemed a little bulky and unbalanced – the Series 5000 is light, balanced and crafted almost ergonomically.
It would be great value at twice the price. It really does feel like a luxury item. Though falling behind some of the higher end products on the market, it fully bats above its weight and gives you as smooth a shave as anybody in the world could ever want. You will honestly feel baby-fresh after using it.
A combination of clever design and comfortable craftsmanship makes it the perfect, balanced shaver for anybody looking to feel a little pampered, or for anybody who wants a practical, fuss free shave without breaking the bank. It’s rare for a grooming tool to manage both at once.
So, after all of this, how does it stand up?
If you have five hundred pounds to spend on a shaver, fair enough. Go for a high-end Braun, or even one of Philips’ more expensive models.
However, I’m willing to bet that you won’t get that much more utility than you would get from the Series 5000 – at least not at a consistent ratio with the price you pay. You will get a little change from a hundred pounds with the Series 5000, as mentioned above, but you will feel like you have spent a couple of hundred.
It is practical, useful and no-nonsense in many regards. Then, due to sheer design brilliance, it also has a pampering, luxurious side that subtly slips in there. The turbo charge feature means that even the toughest beards will melt like butter before it. The rotary blades’ unique design will leave you completely smooth. The precision tool will mean that all your lines are clean and sharp. Everything else about the Series 5000 is built to make your life easier and your face and beard more comfortable.
Thumbs up all round.