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Despite what you may have been told, razors are not just razors. Their significance in your grooming routine is, well, just that—significant; after all, the razor you use to shave can determine whether you're left with nicks, bumps, and ingrown hairs versus a silky-smooth result. Yes, technique matters (be gentle!), but even the most skilled shavers can't escape the wrath of a bad razor—plain and simple.
So if you've been using the same razor since junior high to keep things simple, it's time to change all that. We scoured the Internet to find top-rated razors that'll upgrade any shaving routine.
Read on for the best razors for a close, smooth shave every time.
Best Overall: Gillette Venus Platinum Extra Smooth Razor
This drugstore-favorite razors got it right the first time, and as the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Year after year, this remains a household go-to razor, and we like to think the five diamond-like coated blades have something to do with it. They help ensure a close shave, and the included moisture ribbon around the blade reduces the risk of cuts and burns. The razor also has a pivoting round head to glide over curves and hard-to-reach areas, as well as a sturdy metal handle that won't slip out of your hands amongst all the suds.
Best Subscription: Billie Razor Starter Kit
These budget-friendly razors and their subscription-based model are taking the world by storm and we're not surprised. Five blades are encased in charcoal shave soap for an incredibly smooth glide every time. Since shaving is typically a routine event, Billie makes it easy to get your hands on replacement heads without having to think twice—they simply arrive at your doorstep as you need them. You can also choose the color of your razor from five different shades, and this particular kit comes with a handy magnetic holder for your shower, too. Talk about the perfect starter kit.
Runner-Up, Best Subscription: Athena Club Razor Kit
You haven’t seen a razor quite like this before, and that’s because it’s composed of sharp, patented blades. A favorite of Byrdie Associate Editor Holly Rhue, each blade is cushioned with skin guards and precisely spaced to allow hair and shaving cream to pass through. We also love that it has a water-activated shea butter serum that plays nicely with sensitive skin.
Best for Sensitive Skin: Schick Intuition Sensitive Care Razor
After numerous cases of painful folliculitis (not fun), Byrdie Commerce Editorial Director Jessica Mahgerefteh was instructed to switch out her former razor (we won't name names) to this sensitive skin-friendly option by her dermatologist. The blades are coated with a conditioning solid of natural aloe vera and vitamin E that, upon contact with water, replace the need for traditional shaving cream.
"My legs were covered in painful and itchy bumps, which made it impossible to keep up a regular shaving routine," Mahgerefteh says. "Once I switched to this razor, I found myself ditching the shaving cream and my frequent bouts of skin irritation. I'll never use anything else."
Best Ergonomic: Flamingo Razor
Shaving hard-to-reach places and curves (knees, am I right?) can be a struggle, but Flamingo razors make it easy—and that's precisely why we love them. They feature an ergonomic handle that's weighted, as well as a flexible hinge that promises a close shave without any extra pressure. The blades (made of high-quality Swedish steel) are also equipped with a hydrating strip to reduce friction. Two words: Quality Stuff.
Best Portable: Alleyoop All-in-One Portable Razor
Not close to a shower or even a bathroom? No problem. With this innovative razor, you can shave from virtually anywhere. It includes a water spray bottle, two triple-blade razor cartridges, and a water-activated moisturizing bar made of shea butter, olive oil, and other nice ingredients for silky smooth skin.
It's small (keep it in your purse), convenient, and can help you in a pinch whether you forgot to shave your legs before a beach day or want to remove a few hairs under your arms that are visible in your tank.
Best for Travel: Gillette Venus ComfortGlide White Tea Blades
Another great option for on-the-go, this convenient mini razor is a simple yet effective addition to your carry on or your gym bag. It has the skin protecting moisture bars that we’ve come to expect from Venus, and users say that the short sturdy handle makes for an easy ergonomic shave. This one also gets a vanity point for being so adorable.
Best Grip: Joy Razor
Who knew that dropping your razor in the shower over and over again wasn’t actually mandatory? Joy fixed that problem with a silicone wand with a non-slip grip to help you navigate your shave easier. Users report a close, long-lasting shave.
Best Splurge: Oui The People Straight Razor
This razor goes back to the basics with one single blade that gets the job done without tugging hairs or irritating sensitive skin. The brand, founded by Karen Young, has revived the ritual of shaving; they recommend taking your time for a close, nick-free shave. (If you're short on time, this might not be the right pick for you.) The razor comes in luxurious metals like matte black or rose gold, and reviewers say that they’ve been converted from their disposable razors for good, including Byrdie's own Senior Editor Hallie Gould.
Best for Dermaplaning: Schick Silk Touch-Up
No stigma here, women get facial hair too. This is a great tool for cleaning up peach fuzz or tiny hairs near your brows or upper lip, and it’s also ideal for dermaplaning at home, if you’ve got the skills. The high-quality blades have micro guards to protect your skin, but for best results use your favorite cream, gel, or oil to prevent cuts.
Best Bikini Trimmer: Schick Hydro Silk TrimStyle Razor
This razor and bikini trimmer makes it super easy to get a close shave where you want it, and a light trim where you prefer it. The battery-operated trimmer is waterproof and has an adjustable comb with four settings so that you can customize your trim length without ever irritating your skin. It also has a hypoallergenic moisturizing serum, so you can keep your bikini line smooth and free of ingrown hairs.
Best Electric: Philips SatinShave Advanced Wet & Dry Cordless Electric Shaver
If you’re prone to nicks and cuts from shaving, then an electric razor might be just what you need. This shaver from Phillips got our attention for its hypoallergenic flexing foil, making it ideal for sensitive skin. Use it dry for convenience or wet with a gel or oil anywhere that your body grows hair for a close, clean shave.
Runner-Up, Best Electric: Finishing Touch Flawless Legs Women's Hair Remover
Shaving your legs often can feel like a chore, but this revolutionary electric shaver gets the job done well while also reducing your shave time. It has an LED light to make sure that you capture every hair, and the palm perfect design has 18k gold plated heads that contour to every curve. Users report that it’s super easy to use and that unlike many other electric razors, stubble is left to a minimum.