Philips OneBlade Review: A Shaver and Trimmer in One?

By Charlie Harper | Reviews

Apr 30

Philips designs many different gadgets, but they know that personal grooming is at the top of everyone’s list. Or it should be. Many men take great pride in caring about their facial hair. From keeping clean edges, smooth lines, or even just enjoying a close shave, Philips claims to deliver quality results.

With a quality razor, men can take personal grooming to the next level and put themselves forward in a composed manner. The issues of razor burn, and breakouts from shaving all start with having a quality tool for the job.

The Philips OneBlade line with its multiple models claims to cater towards men who have sensitive skin and need some help in maintaining a set style. The line also claims to deliver all the precision of a standard trimmer in a slimmer design.

There are a few different models worth considering if you’re looking to buy your next electric shaver. Although the Philips line collectively is full of quality trimmers and shavers, it’s important to note that none of these is a traditional electric razor.

Philips combines technology with the comfort of a traditional shave in the OneBlade models. The features vary from each product, but in the end, they all cater towards people who simply want a clean, close shave without skin irritation. You can use these features in either wet or dry conditions.

Philips also crafts a number of attachments for their various product lines, including the Norelco. These attachments help maintain intricate or unique looks. Or, if you’ve been looking for the perfect amount of comb length to help in your trimming, Philips does that too.

Men have been asking for a multipurpose shaving device for many years now, and Philips was one of the first to deliver. They brought in the concept of a trimmer and the execution of a traditional blade. Then they used top of the line design techniques to engineer one that does both.

Is it possible to have one tool that can deliver a great shave and a distinguished trim? Although many brands have tried before, Philips is taking a new approach. Let’s talk all about it in this Philips OneBlade review.

The OneBlade Technology

Usually, when we mention a traditional razor, we mean the 1-5 bladed contraptions that need their heads replaced once a week. Or we even sometimes refer to the disposable, one-time-use variety.

There’s nothing wrong with a quality shaver. But, Philips takes the idea of “traditional” back to its roots. The single blade (hence OneBlade) concept used here should provide a shave that would pale multibladed razors in comparison.

The Philips OneBlade pro qp6520/30, Philips OneBlade pro and all other models in the same line deliver a uniquely designed, cross-hatched, coated blade. This one has teeth which extend outward to help guide the hair.

However, the OneBlade head is still generally disposable. The connection where the blade meets the base piece is a few bits of plastic that also impact its flexibility. The flexibility is great, but the plastic is susceptible to damage. Because these are thin bits of, generally speaking, cheap plastic, they are prone to breaking which means replacing the whole unit.

The cartridge should last about 4 months, which is much sooner than electric shavers but much longer than any traditional one. The battery runtime on this shaver lasts for 45 minutes after needing about 8 hours to charge. That’s hardly worth the charge time!
Although no one should take 45 minutes to shave, if you break that down into 10-minute chunks of time there’s no way you can go a week without charging this razor.

What is the Philips OneBlade Pro?

The Phillips OneBlade Pro is an update to the Norelco model and brings in many of the features.

Philips blends the best of an electric shaver and a beard trimmer into the OneBlade Pro so it’s definitely an upgrade to the Norelco. But, fusing them together has downsides as well. By design, it should deliver nothing but a smooth shave. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Most men end up with a cut-up face after repeatedly going over the same spot.

The OneBlade Pro model offers a lot of benefits for someone who doesn’t plan on shaving their whole face regularly. But in those cases, you’re probably better off with just a trimmer. But, this shaver is a more hygienic approach to trimming facial hair.

Essentially the Philips OneBlade pro target people who enjoy taking time on their facial hair, and don’t mind paying for it. Because the blades are relatively disposable, Philips has found a way to extend the life of each cartridge so you wouldn’t have to change them too often. Unfortunately, the pricing on these blades is quite unreasonable.

Charging the OneBlade Pro is easy. By plugging in the 2-prong charger, you can charge it anywhere in the world. This feature is a bonus for the travellers out there. But the downside is that if you want a full charge, you need to let it set plugged in for an hour. Then you will only have about 90 minutes of shaving time.

The Philips OneBlade Pro swapped out the multiple attachments for a single one with an adjustable guard. The multiple adjustments have 14 different settings. For many people concerned with maintaining their facial hair, these settings are worth the extra cost.

The 14 different length settings do appeal to those who aim for the “permashadow” look, as they can fade between similar lengths to tame unruly growth areas.

The Philips OneBlade Pro qp6520/30 Review

Philips-OneBlade-ReviewLet’s move on to the nexr part of this review.

The Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 is a combination trimmer and shaver. The hybrid design allows this model to use recent updates in electric shaver technology and keep the comfort of handling an actual blade.

It helps provide intricate designs to moustaches, beards, goatees, and sideburns. Overall, this shaver is meant for those who focus on the style rather than just trying to get rid of it. The Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 also help to eliminate irritation from shaving.

This OneBlade model charges quickly with a 2-prong plug. There is also a display on the front that helps you remember when to charge it.
But where it starts to shine when compared to its competition is the number of blades. Many electric razors stop at 4 blades, but this one uses 5 blades that keep their sharp edge for months.

It works well in both wet and dry conditions and through shaving gel. Many razors get clogged with this shaving gel but this cuts right through it.

The OneBlade technology delivers cutting that meets the standard of the competition. With 200 cuts per second, that is about 12,000 cuts per minute. Although it’s not the fastest razor available, it does stand up to well-respected models such as the Panasonic electric razors.

It also highlights 14 different length settings. The length settings begin at 4mm and extend to 10mm. The length setting is easy to lock so there’s no risk of it moving on you as you’re shaving.

Finally, the Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 has rounded polymer tips so the blades are easy on the skin and the battery lasts for about 90 minutes of continuous use. So, the downside to the rounded polymer tips is that although they are easier on the skin, they can leave a slightly uneven shave. But, with 90 minutes of continuous use, you’re not worried about getting your face shaved before the battery runs out.

What is the Difference Between the Philips OneBlade and the OneBlade Pro?

The Philips OneBlade feels very familiar to a standard shaver. But when you compare it to the OneBlade Pro model, you see that the latter has more trimmer qualities about it. The major difference between the 2 Philips model though is the attachments.

The comb attachments on the Pro are more apt to match popular beard lengths because of the adjustability. It also helps feed the hair into the blade. It’s also catered to edge and style, making it a prime choice for moustaches, goatees, and sideburns. All in all, when comparing the two, the OneBlade Pro caters towards maintaining facial hair styles.

One primary difference between the Philips OneBlade and Pro is the battery. For the purpose of this review, we left both units running just to see how long they’d last. Although the former only lasts for about 45 minutes, the Pro lasts for about 90 minutes when fully charged and uses a Lithium-ion battery. The benefit of Lithium-ion batteries is that when you charge before they’re all the way discharged, they don’t “learn” to hold less of a charge which was an issue with the old batteries.

Pricing

pricingThe pricing for the Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 is relatively reasonable. As with many electric razors or hybrid razors, the initial price seems low, but the replacement blades or heads are more expensive making it the same price either way.

However, you’re only replacing the cartridge once every 4 months or so.

In the end, you’re still saving money then if you continue to purchase traditional razors. But, if you go throughout the course of a year buying replacement heads and then include the initial payment you’ve far exceeded the cost of a top-quality electric trimmer.

The Pro model is no match in price against top brands such as Braun, or Panasonic. It quickly jumps in price when you add up the replacement blades on top of the initial purchase price. Price is another big difference between the two.

If you must buy a Philips brand hybrid shaver, you should opt for the OneBlade pro or the pro qp6520/30 models because of the longer battery life which can justify some of the increase in cost.

Public Perception

There is a clear divide among users on whether the Philips OneBlade pro is worth it. People who have thin or medium-thick facial hair prefer it to other hybrid or electric razors. But, anyone who has flat laying hair, or thick beards reports a large amount of skin irritation, cuts and bumps.

The Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 receives some praise for not having as many issues with causing skin irritation. If you are set on having a OneBlade, then the OneBlade qp6520/30 is probably your best bet.

Where the Philips OneBlade pro qp6520/30 wins the top place out of the entire line, is in detail. If you’re using this model for edging or detailing the top and bottom prongs help guide you to a straight line and let you get in tight spaces. The smaller head and thin handle make it easy to get a precise edge.

How It Compares

Philips OneBlade ReviewWhat makes the Philips qp6520/30 and Pro stand out from other razors is its hybrid form. The Philips OneBlade pro provides a balance of traditional razor and trimmer.

But, it retains a quality of traditional razors that many trimmers just can’t claim and that’s waterproofing. For anyone who prefers to shave in the shower, the Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 can handle it. The grip on the sides holds up well to hands covered in shaving gel, cream or foam.

The blade, in theory, is like nothing you’ve ever seen before. This rather large trimmer, shaver hybrid has a standard size blade. The sort of blade you would imagine replacing weekly or even just throwing out.

Although it looks out of place, the blade is in fact what sets the Philips OneBlade series apart from the competition. Unfortunately, it’s also it’s undoing.

So, each side of the blade has 2 layers of prongs. The first green layer is not the blade but helps your hair stand up for the blade. The second layer of prongs is the extension of the blade.

Between the prongs or teeth, the hair will encounter the blade which rapidly wavers cutting many strands at once. The fact that these teeth are on both edges is pretty impressive also. Before the Philips OneBlade, it was unheard of for a trimmer to work from both angles.

Although it’s not often discussed, the flexibility in handling the razor from multiple angles makes a huge difference for many men.

After the prongs are the actual blade, itself starts. The blade on the Pro and the qp6520/30 has a cross-hatched pattern. It is coated with a material that makes it incredibly smooth. When you test it at first, your finger can glide right across the surface. However, when in use, the razor quickly loses this quality with any amount of pressure.

The crosshatching design quickly turns against the user and wreaks havoc on their face. In comparison to its competition, you’re better off with either a traditional razor or an electric shaver.

What We Think

what we thinkBefore we come to the end of this review, here’s a summary of what we think:

The Philips OneBlade isn’t the first choice for anyone looking for a hybrid trimmer/shaver. It’s pricey and doesn’t work for everyone. However, the Pro offers slightly better performance at nearly double the cost.

If you are attempting to save money, this is not the razor for you. And, if you have thick, course, or low laying facial hair, you should probably stay away from the Philips OneBlade and the Pro.

However, the Philips OneBlade qp6520/30 retains the quality design and innovation but delivers with slightly more success than the other 2 models.

It uses a mix of variety and quality to help many people achieve several different styles. Because the length is easy to switch, but also that it locks into place it can ease the worry of those who have beards. Now you don’t need a trimmer and a shaver.

The razor can keep your edges clean, and the blades are gentle depending on what type of beard you have. So those who switched to an electric razor for a less irritating shave should be wary of the Philips OneBlade line. We should note that the level of irritation depends on your type of hair, especially with this razor.

The Philips OneBlade qp6520/30, Philips OneBlade and the Philips OneBlade Pro all require multiple strokes, which leads to more irritation. At first, the green coating surrounding the blade on all OneBlade models helps prevent irritation. But after only a few uses, this effect wears off, and your skin could be more irritated than ever.

Before we conclude our review of the OneBlade models, here’s our final take:

Overall, the Philips OneBlade models including the OneBlade qp6520/30 aren’t the best choice if your skin is at all sensitive. However, if you have thin or medium beard hair that likes to stand straight out, shavers from this line could be a great option.

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