Philips Norelco 5200 Review – Top Rated Wet and Dry Shaver

The Philips Norelco Wet and Dry 5200 Cordless Shaver is an electric, rechargeable razor that is best for individuals who shave every day and like to keep clean shaven.

It is also good for men who keep a clean-shaven head, as it glides easily over the unique shapes of individual heads, maintaining a nice clean shaven scalp for those who prefer the look.

In other words, despite boasting a “Super Lift & Cut Action’ Technology, it is not very effective at cutting longer hairs.

Fully Water Submergible

It would seem that this shaver really needs to be used every day in order to maintain a nice close shave.
It is widely considered inferior to most newer cordless and rechargeable options, and mostly considered superior to earlier, similar Norelco models of its ilk. It is also known for being very lightweight and easy to handle and maneuver.

While it gets the job done effectively and even remarkably well for many individuals, particularly those with grooming goals similar to the ones mentioned above, or those more accustomed to earlier, inferior models of Norelco razors that are similar to the 5200, many more individuals find that the Norelco 5200 is an inferior product that does not work nearly as well as its price tag would suggest;  which is usually in the $85-$110 range.

It is also not fully water submergible, despite the fact that it is indeed a wet/dry shaver and approved for use in the shower. This means that the user will need to be particularly careful when using the Norelco 5200 while in the shower, especially since it is touted as being particularly effective when used with that method.


  • Technology: Multi Precision Blade System with

5 Direction Flex Heads for fast, close shaves

  • Battery life (when fully charged): 40 minutes

(one shave for QuickCharge option)

  • Blade type: triple rotary blade head
  • Wet/dry use: AquaTech feature allows

for wet/dry use,  in-shower use

  • Charge time: 1 hour (5 minute

QuickCharge option)

  • Cleaning Unit: “OneTouch Open” for

easy cleaning

  • Ergonomics: lightweight but average
  • Accessories: SmartClick Precision

Trimmer attachment, included case,

extra blade head, power cord

Review Score: 3 out of 5 Stars

This shaver is remarkable for a few reasons. One of those reasons is that the heads “float” and easily and gently ride over unique face shapes, planes, and even the (sometimes slightly bumpy) surface of the scalp to provide a comfortable and close shave every time.

As mentioned before, this is really a useful factor for men who always keep clean shaven and for men who keep their heads shaven as well, but it is a high performance feature worth illustrating again, as it will also have grooming uses for individuals who do not fit either of these two aforementioned categories.

Finally, another unique factor about this shaver is that it comes with a free replacement head, which is a value of $40-$60 all by itself. It does perform particularly well in the shower, as the heat and steam from the water soften hairs, allowing the less-powerful motor of the Norelco 5200 to do its job far more effectively.

  • Comes with a free replacement shaver head.
  • Lightweight unit is easily maneuvered while shaving, and the shape of the unit provides a natural-feeling and comfortable fit for both larger and smaller hands.
  • Comes with the Smart Click precision trimmer attachment, for more delicate and precise tasks.
  • Water-resistant, great for in-shower use.
  • Blade heads last up to one year before needing to be replaced.
  • Versatile 5 Direction Flex heads provide a very comfortable and close shave.
  • Features “Super Lift & Cut Technology”, which purports to lend comfort to your close shave.
  • One hour attached to the charging cable provides 40 minutes of cordless shaving.
  • Small, light, and extremely portable; ideal for traveling.
  • The 5 Minute Quick Charge provides enough juice for one full shave.
  • Comes with a travel pouch.
  • Exceptionally quiet operation.
  • 45-day Norelco Money Back Guarantee.
  • Also backed by a full 2-year manufacturer warranty.
  • The Norelco 5200 Wet and Dry Electric Shaver takes longer than competitors in its class to provide a complete shave. Users have reported frequently needing to make two or three passes to obtain the complete, close shave they desire.
  • The motor is not powerful, which causes a variety of issues with the function of the Norelco 5200, namely having to do with its lack of efficiency and speed.
  • Quite a few users of the Norelco 5200 Wet and Dry Electric Shaver have reported that there is no way to judge at what level the battery is charged. In other words, there is no helpful juice-o-meter for the battery.
  • Replacement heads are priced somewhere in the $40-$60 range, which is kind of hard to swallow when the Norelco 5200 does not do a very thorough and dependable job in the first place.

Additional Cons

  • The Norelco Wet and Dry Electric Cordless Shaver is priced in the range of many similar cordless electric shavers, but its quality and functionality quite frankly not up to par with many of those competitors.
  • **(However, it is worth noting that some of these issues could be chalked up to defective units. All products will have a certain number of defective products, regardless of how carefully and skillfully the manufacturing process).
  • Here is a major problem, one that is mentioned independently, again and again: the On/Off Switch on the shaver unit is too large and positioned in the worst possible location for such a switch to be positioned. This causes the unit to be accidentally switched off very, very frequently during operation of the shaver. This has caused some users to become so extremely annoyed that they actually returned the Norelco 5200 to its place of purchase, to obtain a refund and buy a different electric shaver.
  • The 5 Minute Quick Charge function often does not provide enough juice to completely finish a shave.
  • The 5 Direction Flex head must be removed to attach and use the Smart Click Precision Trimmer. However, once the shaving head has been removed for the first time, it never fits back properly into its socket, and the entire head has been known to fall right out of the socket and into the bathroom sink, over and over. I will say that, even when a replacement base was provided after a call to Norelco, the shaver head at first fit perfectly and solidly into the shaver base again. That lasted until the first time the shaver head was again removed to use the precision trimmer attachment-- and then the loose-socket problem began all over again.
  • Unlike many other trimmers, the Norelco 5200 Smart Click Trimmer attachment does poorly with cutting even the finest thin hair, and many users find that it butchers the job of their sideburn maintenance terribly and cannot be used for that purpose.
  • Longer hairs (i.e., anything that is not stubble or very short whiskers) in general are a problem for the Norelco 5200. It is best purchased for customers looking to shave their face and/or head more or less clean, and to shave as close to daily as possible.

Overview of Specifications and Features

Price and Value for Money:

The Philips Norelco 5200 is a rechargeable Wet and Dry Electric Shaver that is priced comparably to the Norelco 6100; hovering somewhere in the $90 range. However, it pales in comparison to the Norelco 6100, and also to quite a few other similar shavers in that same price range.

It defintely has its drawbacks, as well as a plethora of other functional issues. With its interchangeable shaving head and precision trimmer, Norelco was definitely onto something, but the craftsmanship and design of the actual, physical product ended up being somewhat of a whoopsie.

That is not, of course, to say that there are not many customers out there who are completely satisfied, and even happy, with their purchase of the Norelco 5200 Wet and Dry Cordless Electric Shaver, and have likely not experienced any of these problems with their own personal shaver.

Maybe there were simply a large amount of defective units that went out onto the shelves at some point. Giving things the benefit of doubt is always a good idea, paricularly when we are talking about an item manufactured and designed by Norelco, a company well-known for producing dependable and quality shaving innovations on a regular basis.

No charging dock

The Philips Norelco 5200 does not have a charging dock like many other electric shavers in its class, but the included charge cable facilitates very similar charging statistics as those other electric cordless shavers, and the Norelco 5200 does even have the 5 Minute Quick charge feature (which is good for one quick shave), and which many other shavers in the 5200’s class do not possess.

All said, the Norelco 5200 is certainly a major improvement over Norelco’s previous efforts at a wet/dry cordless electric shaver. It even looks imposing and capable, despite its light weight and easy handling capabilities.


The Philips Norelco 5200 is lightweight, comfortable to hold and to navigate, but the ON/OFF button is located in the most inconvenient place possible, causing it to be inadvertently tripped on a frequent basis.


Truthfully, the Philips Norelco 5200 does not really include accessories, per se; aside from the travel case, they are  more like necessary parts for the 5200 to function.

  • Travel pouch
  • Charging cord
  • Spare shaver head
  • Trimmer attachment


The Philips Norelco 5200 Wet and Dry Electric Cordless Rechargeable Shaver is an effective, worthy shaving tool when used by individuals looking solely for a close shave, either for their face, their scalp or just about any part of their bodies (within reason, of course).

To put that another way,  I am very doubtful that this shaver would work very well on particularly loose and sensitive skin, if you catch my drift.  However, the Five Directional Flex Heads and the high performance of the 5200 in-shower do make this shaver an ideal choice for body shaving in the shower, too.

Review Rating:  3 out of 5 stars.

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Ruben - Shaver Team

My Name is Ruben Cahn. Every morning I used to cut myself shaving with a straight razor. Many razors promise a close cut shave but fail to deliver. I stumbled upon electric shavers. However, many of them caused skin burns. I decided to educate myself about my next electric shaver. In the process I became electric shaver fanatic. Hope you will enjoy my electric shavers and electric razors reviews.

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