When you are looking for a rotary razor, the Philips Norelco 4100 will likely be on your radar. Phillips is known for its rotary razors, and the 4100 is an affordable option sold at most drug stores.

The 4100 has been on the market for a decade now . It is one of the few affordable electric’s that is waterproof. It’s a big upgrade over the 3000 series of razors typically sold alongside it for a lower price point.

The Philips Norelco Shaver 4100 series works for both wet and dry shaving as an improvement on older models that didn’t allow shaving in the shower. It charges within an hour for at least 50 minutes of shaving between charging.

But what about the other features? Are they worth the price? Let’s see.

Overview 

The Phillips Norelco 4100 is designed to be an affordable razor sold in drugstores and other non-specialty stores. It is a three-blade rotary without the floating head deck available on Phillip’s more expensive series.

Instead, the 4100 razor is designed with floating and flexing heads that still allow a wide degree of contour for shaving around the jawline. Also, it is battery powered and rechargeable, unlike the 1000 series.

The Phillips Norelco 4100 is an electric razor suited for anyone looking for a good quality electric razor. It does not have many of the features that high-end electric models do.

However, for those who just want a good basic shave, the 4100 will certainly have your back and your chin.

Quick Facts

Battery life (when fully charged): 50 minutes. (one shave for QuickCharge option)

Blade type: triple rotary blade head

Wet/dry use: yes

Charge time: 1 hour (3 minute QuickCharge option)

Cleaning Unit: Shave head pops open,  you rinse it & use included brush to clean

Ergonomics: lightweight, feels natural to hold, secure rubberized grip

Accessories: protective cap, cleaning. brush, charging cord

Technology: AquaTec technology makes the Norelco 4100 waterproof, safe for shower, gels/creams/etc

Effective Over Multiple Uses

After using the Phillips Norelco 4100 for a few weeks, it showed it is preforming at its best if I used it every day. Shaving is a very personal experience the thickness and curliness of hair has a significant impact on any razor’s effectiveness. For me it was less likely to clog if I used it daily.

I thoroughly tested this razor to give you the most information about all of this razor’s features before you decide. I will also provide you with a rating on the features of the razor’s performance.

How Does it Work?

The Philips Norelco 4100 is a rotary razor. This sets it apart from most other makers of electric razors who use foil designs. Philips Norelco is known for its rotary designs with flexible heads and decks.

This model holds to its maker’s typical flexible blade head design. I found every button, including the power and the one for the pop-out trimmer, can be operated with one thumb.

The thing I miss most in this model, compared to others from Philip’s more expensive models, is the flexible deck. On this model, the three flexible rotating heads are fixed on Philips’s classic goose-neck razor design.

However, the heads themselves are still flexible, giving it better contour than flat “foil” design razors.

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Key Features

The Philips Norelco 4100 has three features that set it apart from its predecessors and other affordable models. These include:

Aquatec Technology

Unlike Philips’s closest model, the 3000 series of electric razors, the 4100 uses Philips patented Aquatec technology allowing it to remain waterproof when submerged up to 5 meters.

This means it can offer a wet or dry shave with shaving gel or cream. This is an important feature and means it can even be used in the shower, which I, for one, like.

Quick Charge Time

From an empty battery to a full charge only takes one hour. This is typically enough for a week of use, or if you’re feeling adventurous, 15 consecutive shaves.

This is a significant improvement over the 3000 series or most low-end razors that take up to 8 hours to charge.

Also, the 4100 offers a quick charge option that allows a three-minute charge, enough for a single shave. This is extremely useful if you forgot to charge but really need a shave.

Flex, Pivot, Float

The rotating disc blade is held within a flexible metal cage that can push inward to get closer to the blade. The blade assembly can pivot side to side and is held by a spring to allow it to move back and forth to move and contour to your skin.

Super Lift & Cut

Dual-blades lift hair to cut below skin level for a close, smooth and comfortable shave no matter how short hair is. It has longer blades to lift longer hairs and smaller to cut through short shadow, even if the hair is just starting to grow back

Dual Precision System

shaves long hair and short stubble to get a shave comfortably right at/below skin level. This makes it versatile for all facial hair types- longer and thicker beards or shorter goatees.

Flexing Heads

Adjust to any curve of your face and neck for a closer and more comfortable shave. Works for any hair type and offers a close, even shave. Instead of just a simple straight line, you can move the head to fit any curve or contour of your face/neck.

How Does It Compare To Other Models 

The Remington R5100 is an electric shaver that is quite similar to the Norelco 4100. Both shavers are popular economical electric razors. Also, they have similar battery lives of around an hour.

They also have an excellent quick charge option when I don’t want to wait for a full charge. Additionally, these electric shavers both give a good but not great shave.

There are some differences. The Remington R5100 has an antimicrobial compound around the blades, which helps keep bacteria from building up. Whereas, the Norelco 4100 has the advantage of being fully waterproof.

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Norelco 4100 Vs. Norelco 4200

The Norelco 4200 is the successor of the 4100 in the 4000 series. However, outside of the name, it is a virtually identical product in a different color.

I found the only two differences are the color and the lack of a charging stand in the Norelco 4200. The 4100 is blue, but the 4200 is red. Replacement blades are interchangeable, and the form factor, motor, and the weight are the same.

Here is a comparison of the main features.

Features Norelco 4100 Norelco 4200
Charge Time 1 Hour 50 Minutes
Run Time 1 Hour 50 Minutes
Blade Type Dual Precision Dual Precision
Waterproof Yes Yes
Trimmer Yes Yes


Norelco 4100 Vs. 4500

The 4500 is the successor to the 4200, and it shows. Unlike the previous two generations, it added a second led to show when the battery is low. Other than that, it is the same product in matte.

The blades, form factor, motor, and every feature are the same as the previous 2 generations. However, unlike the 4200, the charging stand from the original and an optional travel case can be acquired in some models.

Philips Norelco released a good product with the 4100, so it seems they did not want to change a good thing. This is probably why all of these models are still available, and the Norelco 4100 is still a popular electric razor.

What We Liked

Maintenance: I can easily clean the shaver by opening the shaving head and rinsing it off. If any hairs are stuck beneath the blades, I use the included brush.

Charge Time: It only takes an hour to charge, and if you’re in a hurry, you can use it after three minutes with its quick charge feature. I like this because I often left it in the shower and forgot to put it in the dock. After three minutes, it can at least give a quick shave.

Fully Waterproof: This is great if you want to shave in the shower; it’s safe to just leave it in there.

Shaving Heads: I like how the three flexible shaving heads do a good job of covering a large area while contouring so as not to irritate the skin.

Trimmer: I know this is normal, but I still like any razor with a pop-up trimmer.

Battery: I like how the lithium-ion battery gives it an entire week on a charge. Unlike most affordable razors, it does not become less effective when the battery level drops.

Warranty: This razor is covered under warranty for two years.

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What We Didn’t Like 

Power: This model does not work when plugged in. I appreciate the quick charge feature, but sometimes I just wanted to be able to plug it in and use it.

Non-flexible deck: The deck of this shaver is not flexible like it is on other Norelco models. I find this makes it harder to shave difficult to reach areas.

Accessories 

The Philips Norelco 4100 comes with the standard accessories you expect for an electric razor. These include:

  • Charging Dock
  • Brush for Blade Cleaning
  • Protective Cap for Blades


Disassemble Before Cleaning 

Although this can be used in the shower, it is important to turn off the shaver before cleaning, take the heads off before cleaning and clean in hot water and make sure you don’t put the entire shaver underwater. It’s water-resistant and works in the shower, but like most electronics, it can’t work fully immersed.

Staff Ratings 

  • Ease of Use: 5/5
  • Features: 3/5
  • Value for Money 4/5

Final Verdict 

I think the Norelco 4100 is a reasonably priced electric shaver that most men will be happy with. I find that it provides a decent, comfortable shave.

The Norelco 4100 can be used for a wet or dry shave. It even has the advantage of being able to be used in the shower. I like this as I find it easier to shave in the shower.

It’s not for everyone. A more expensive model might be a better choice for someone who prefers to wait a few days between shaves. However, overall, I think the Norelco 4100 is a good, dependable electric razor.