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Top five beard trimmer hacks for Decembeard

It’s beard trimmers at the ready as charity initiative Decembeard returns for its seventh year. To make sure you’re well prepared, we’ve just taken a first look at the newest beard trimmers from Babyliss, Braun, Panasonic, Philips, Remington and Wahl. If you’re taking part, read our top five tips on how to get the most out of your beard trimmer, and keep your bristles in good shape this Decembeard.

And why not take our Decembeard quiz[1] while you’re at it. Or go straight to our beard trimmer first look reviews[2] to see which is best to keep your chin fur stylishly groomed. Kick off Decembeard by taking our quiz and challenging yourself to identify as many celebs as you can, by their beards alone.

Can’t see the quiz? Click here[3].

1. Match your beard trimmer to your style

If you’re one of the thousands sporting a full beard for the first time to raise money and awareness for bowel cancer research, you’re going to need to choose a beard style. Whether you want to keep it neat with a classic short, boxed beard or sport a real showstopper in honour of Decembeard (exhibitionists should Google ‘old Dutch’ or ‘French fork’), it pays to know what you’ll need your beard trimmer to do.

Otherwise you could end up paying more than you need to for unnecessary functions and attachments. Some beard trimmers have an impressive-sounding number of length settings, but the longest of these is often just 10mm; great for short beards and stubble but not so much for longer growth. Other trimmers with fewer settings can reach lengths of up to 25mm, which would be better suited for those sporting longer beards.

So figure out how long and how tailored you want your beard to be before you begin assessing the different specs on each model.

2. Weigh up key features

Remington claims its Endurance Groomer can hold 70% of its battery charge over 12 months

A beard trimmer with a lot of power can potentially trim more whiskers in one pass, meaning less work and less time spent grooming. The Wahl SPL Stainless Steel 4-in-1 Multigroomer[4] has a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that Wahl claims will provide double the power of a standard trimmer.

But power alone isn’t a sure-fire indicator of top-notch cutting performance. Battery performance is another key consideration. Remington claims its MB4200 Endurance Groomer can hold 70% of its battery charge over 12 months.

It also boasts a low-battery indicator and a five-minute quick charge function, which should also help you avoid getting caught without power. But is it any good at the really important task of trimming hairs evenly and comfortably? Read our first look review of the Remington MB4200 Endurance Groomer[5] to find.

A firm advocate of ‘convenience is king’? Then you might want to check out the Philips Series 7000 BT7202[6], which has a mini-vacuum that sucks up the trimmings as you shave. It draws them into a chamber at the front of the beard trimmer, which you can then detach and empty into a bin.

3.

Go laser for sharp lines

If sharp lines along the neck or jaw are key to your look, you might be interested in the Philips BT9280 Beard Trimmer with Laser. This unique model projects a laser line onto the face, which shows you exactly where you’re shaving, and is intended to help you achieve a more precise shave. It’s also waterproof, so it can be rinsed under the tap for easy cleaning.

But these extra features come at a cost, and this beard trimmer is one of the most expensive models we’ve looked at. Find out what we made of it by reading our first look review of the Philips BT9280 Beard Trimmer with Laser[7].

4. Clean your beard trimmer

The Panasonic ER-GB42 has a washable cutting head

Get in the habit of cleaning your trimmer after every use, as a build-up of hair can damage the blades and also seriously impair the life of your beard trimmer.

Some models, such as the Panasonic ER-GB42[8], are fully washable, allowing them to be run under the tap for a bit of an easier clean. Even if you have one of these waterproof beard trimmers, it’s still useful to open it up occasionally and give it a brush out, to make sure it’s clear of any build-up. Another useful habit to get into is oiling the blades of your trimmer.

This will help protect the delicate parts and keep the blades working smoothly. Just a couple of small drops are needed, but always make sure you clean the trimmer first. Philips claims the blades on the Series 5000 BT5200/13[9] are self-sharpening and don’t need to be oiled.

Useful additions like this can take the hassle out of maintenance tasks.

5. Master your Decembeard technique

The difficulty in achieving that perfect Decembeard style will vary depending on how complex the look you want. But there are some basic tips that will help you get the most out of your beard trimmer:

  • Wash and dry your beard.

    It will make it easier to trim and will leave it looking fresh.

  • Comb the beard so all hairs are lying flat and in the same direction.
  • Tidy up the neck line and then move to the cheek line. Work slowly, checking as you go. It’s easy to take off too much.
  • Decide on your length, and set the trimmer or attach the appropriate guard.
  • Follow the contours of your face working from below the chin upwards toward the cheek bones.

Read more about Decembeard[10] for how to take part and what the money you raise from your beard will be helping.

Beard trimmer first look reviews

Below are all the beard trimmers we’ve just looked at.

Follow the links to read our reviews:

Prices correct as of 29 November 2017.

References

  1. ^ Decembeard quiz (www.which.co.uk)
  2. ^ beard trimmer first look reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  3. ^ Click here (www.which.co.uk)
  4. ^ Wahl SPL Stainless Steel 4-in-1 Multigroomer (www.which.co.uk)
  5. ^ Remington MB4200 Endurance Groomer (www.which.co.uk)
  6. ^ Philips Series 7000 BT7202 (www.which.co.uk)
  7. ^ Philips BT9280 Beard Trimmer with Laser (www.which.co.uk)
  8. ^ Panasonic ER-GB42 (www.which.co.uk)
  9. ^ Series 5000 BT5200/13 (www.which.co.uk)
  10. ^ Decembeard (www.decembeard.org)

Movember: top five tips for using electric shavers

Charity initiative Movember[1] is back again, with men around the world sporting neatly groomed top-lip topiary. The aim is to raise money and awareness for a range of male health issues, including prostate cancer and suicide prevention. If you’re taking part, read our top five tips to help you keep your electric shaver in good working order, and maintain the perfect moustache this Movember.

Or go straight to our electric shaver reviews[2] to see which one will help you showcase fantastic facial hair.

1. Electric shaver maintenance is key

Get into the habit of cleaning your shaver after every use. A build-up of hair can damage the blades and also seriously impair the life of your electric shaver.

The blades on most electric shavers are easy to detach and rinse under the tap. You’ll also get a handy, narrow brush to help clean out tricky areas. Our guide on how to clean and maintain an electric shaver[3] can help you get the most out of yours.

Some higher-end models, such as the Philips S9000 s9031/26[4], also include a dock that cleans the blades while the shaver charges.

2. Avoid skin irritation

To really showcase your moustache this Movember, you’ll have to be diligent about shaving the rest of your face every day. This could be an issue if you have sensitive skin, but there are ways to avoid unnecessary irritation.

One tip is to tackle the most sensitive areas, such as the neck, first – before the blades build up the operational heat that could cause your skin problems. You should also focus on your technique, so you don’t have to apply unnecessary pressure by going over the same area too many times. Some models have features designed to help tackle sensitive-skin issues.

The Braun CoolTec CT2s[5] has a cooling element which is meant to keep skin calm throughout each shave. The world’s first internet-connected shaver, the Philips Smart Shaver Series 7000[6], has been specifically designed to reduce irritation and shaving-related skin complaints for people with sensitive skin.

The Philips Smart Shaver Series 7000 is designed to help reduce shaving-related skin issues

3. Get the best battery

One of the key selling points of an electric shaver is how convenient it is.

But that goes right out of the window if you reach for your shaver in the morning and find it without power. We test the battery performance of every shaver we review. We’ve found a Best Buy with a battery that lasts for a whopping 26 shaves, meaning you could take it away on a three-week holiday fully charged and wouldn’t have to carry the charger with you.

But there are others that will give you only around eight shaves per full charge. Compare our electric shaver reviews[7] to see which is best for battery life.

4. Minimise Movember moans

A moustache can be divisive.

Some people love them; others absolutely hate them. Even during Movember, when it’s all for a good cause, a moustache can test the patience of the most understanding partner. The last thing you want to be adding in on top of any potential discord is the sleep-disrupting whir of an overly loud electric shaver first thing in the morning.

Our electric shaver tests include an assessment of noise, and we’ve found some surprising results. Some expensive models, costing well over ?100, only got two stars out of five for noise, while there are very quiet electric shavers available for less than ?30.

5. Nail your shaver technique

Feedback from Which? members shows that most still feel a wet razor blade gives a closer shave than an electric shaver.

But you can certainly narrow the gap by focusing on proper technique.

  • Don’t wash your face before you shave. Unlike with wet shaving, you ideally want the hairs to be dry and stiff so the blades of your electric shaver can catch and cut them more easily.
  • Let the shaver do the work. If you’re keeping your electric shaver well maintained, then you should be able to get a close shave by working the blades over your skin lightly and slowly.

For more tips on shaving technique, and other expert advice, check out our guide on how to buy the best electric shaver[8].

Read more about Movember[9] for how to take part and what the money you raise from your moustache will be helping.

References

  1. ^ Movember (uk.movember.com)
  2. ^ electric shaver reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  3. ^ how to clean and maintain an electric shaver (www.which.co.uk)
  4. ^ Philips S9000 s9031/26 (www.which.co.uk)
  5. ^ Braun CoolTec CT2s (www.which.co.uk)
  6. ^ Philips Smart Shaver Series 7000 (www.which.co.uk)
  7. ^ electric shaver reviews (www.which.co.uk)
  8. ^ how to buy the best electric shaver (www.which.co.uk)
  9. ^ Movember (uk.movember.com)

This woman was so angry about her mobile phone service she padlocked herself to the shop

Searching for a mobile phone signal can be a frustrating necessity for most people, but for this woman it all became a bit too much. Sat on a camping chair, Diane Cartwright padlocked herself to the door of a mobile phone shop for several hours in a desperate attempt to get her phone working. The business owner placed a chain around the door of her local EE store on Wednesday in an attempt to convince bosses to give her a working phone or release her from her contract.

Waving a placard saying: EE: Please release me, let me go and peaceful protest Ms Cartwright sat in the shop doorway from 2pm to 5.30pm. Police were called to the scene but took no action over what was deemed a civil matter .

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Mrs Cartwright, who is in her 50s, relies on her mobile phone to run her dog-grooming company called Porthma DOG in Porthmadog with husband Edmund. She claims her phone only receives an intermittent signal, meaning her company was potentially losing hundreds of pounds from customers in missed calls, the Daily Post reported2

Mrs Cartwright said: We have lost 700 – 1,000 worth of business. We don t want the stress. People were trying to call us and it was saying out of service.

She says that, despite numerous calls to EE, the problem has not been resolved.

Hywel Trewyn Diane Cartwright padlocked herself to the EE shop in Bangor

She wanted to cancel her contract with EE and had demanded they give her a PAC code so she could keep the number but move it to another mobile company. Mrs Cartwright from Mynytho, Gwynedd, said: I can t afford another week without my phone working. All I need is the PAC code. They don t want you to leave. This is the second time the Cartwrights have had problems with mobile phone coverage.

Two years ago, their home was hit by a lightning strike which knocked out their mobile phone, broadband and landline supplied by EE. Mr Cartwright claims he spent 45 hours on the phone trying to sort their problems out. Then, it took six months and the intervention of their MP to get their problems and refund sorted. At the shop in the Deiniol Shopping Centre at Bangor Mrs Cartwright said: We don t owe them any money. I went to the shop at Bangor and I was assured that they would sort it out. I am at the end of my tether and sick to death of it.

The Daily Post said they had approached EE for comment.

References

  1. ^