Grooming Technology

Without wanting to sound a bitter, 70-something, slipper wearing fuddy duddy – the technology that has become intertwined in our daily lives over the last 10 or 15 years is truly staggering. Think through your day-to-day routine, and you’ll soon realise that we’re entirely dependant on some kind of gadgetry; from the smart phone alarm that wakes you up, to the ever present internet which opens up our world to all manor of weird, wonderful, and useful (ahem, FashionBeans) resources. We are the ultimate consumers of technology and quite frankly – it’s bloody brilliant.

To give my rant some context, I’ve recently been testing the super-advanced Clarisonic Cleansing System and as a result had the realisation that our obsession with technological advances has also shaped the grooming market far more than I’d ever considered. If you think back to the 80s (and for some of you that may mean a quick phone call to the old man) most guys were shaving with a single blade unprotected razor that would seem archaic in today’s market, and there certainly weren’t any anti-ageing face toning gadgets (more on that later). Yeah, so we’re still a fair way off 3D face wash, and the chances of edible shave cream (Heston Blumenthal style) are pretty slim, but there are a host of grooming gadgets, gizmos and innovative accessories that are set to shape your routine in 2011, and into the future.

Skin Care Technology

Now-a-days our skin care regimes have the potential to go much deeper than simply a moisturiser and a face wash. The current crop of daily essentials deal with the upper layers of our skin in a way that on the face of it (pun intended) is more than acceptable, but the future of skin care is tackling your complexion from a different angle.

Let’s start with afore mentioned Clarisonic Skin Cleansing System. The basic idea is that this little gadget works in the same way as an electronic toothbrush does, but for your face. Before you recoil in horror, let me tell you that it’s twice as effective as manual cleansing, makes your normal skin care products much more effective and that 81% of those tested saw a marked improvement in the quality of their shave. Impressive, no?

Next up in my own little version of the gadget show is the Slendertone Face. Now for those of you not familiar with the Slendertone concept, it started life as muscle toning technology for your abs, arms, (and for women) the buttocks. But the geeks at Slendertone HQ have been hard at work for the last three years testing and perfecting a version for use on your face that’s now proven to actually reverse the effects of ageing. At first glance it seems like a hefty claim and a hefty investment, but when you think about how much people spend on anti-ageing creams that are half as effective, it’s a steal!

If you’re reading this and thinking that some of these ideas seem a little far fetched, bear in mind that people sniggered at men using moisturisers and make-up in the not so distant past, and that the idea of an iPhone would have seemed staggering 10 years ago – so keep an open mind to what the future of your skin has in store.

Clarisonic PLUS Sonic Skin Cleansing SystemSLENDERTONE FACE

Shaving Gadgetry

While the skin care brands reel out the all singing, all dancing accessories, the shaving bosses are making much more subtle, but equally as effective advances. The current crop of shaving aids mean that there really is no excuse for a sub standard shave, and with the help of the following trend setters – the future looks even smoother.

Regular readers will know that expensive razor blades are one of my pet hates (just edging out JLS at the top of the list). The RazorPit Razor Blade Sharpener is a simple, but extremely effective way of reducing the cost of your shave by staggering amounts. Typically a razor blade may last 10 shaves before it starts to wilt under the pressure, but with RazorPit you can extend the life of your blade to up to 150 shaves. Yes, one hundred and fifty.

Not a fan of the wet shave? Then Philips have the answer. As one of the most respected brands in the industry it’s a given that their electric shavers will go the long hall and the Williams F1 Special Edition Shaver not only looks great, but its double action cut systems follow every contour of your face to make this one of the effective electric razors available – and reasonably priced too.

If a clean shave isn’t your style, then designer stubble can be difficult to achieve without the unkempt, unshaven look taking over. A keen stubble connoisseur myself, I recently invested in the BaByliss For Men iStubble, which (like the iPhone) revolutionised my daily routine. Aside from making it incredibly simple to get neat, even stubble, BaByliss For Men have added a digital display to make length control a snitch.

  • RazorPit Razor Blade Sharpener
  • Philips HQ7390/17 Williams F1 Special Edition Shaver
  • Babyliss for Men I-stubble 7890U
Hair Care Advances

Last but by no means least, the advances in hair care that will shape your style future. I’ve taken my pick from a host of techno-wizardry to unveil two shorter hair must haves, and the gadget of choice for any self confessed poser.

Persuading your partner/sibling/willing associate to cut your hair is a common dilemma for guys sporting a ‘one length all over’ hair style. That was until the guys behind the ‘iStubble’ unveiled the Easy Cut Clipper. Armed with a unique rotary blade and surround comb guide this gizmo cuts the hair in any direction to allow you to trim your own barnet quickly and effectively without embarrassing patchiness. The idea actually really simple and it’s a wonder it took anyone this long to devise it, but now it’s here let us rejoice.

Similarly, guys who prefer a cleanly shaven head will have experienced the painful and unsightly problem of nicks, cuts and irritation of the scalp. Working with the same basic principle as the Easy Cut Clipper, the HeadBlade Scalp Razor is an innovative way of shaving your own head without the hassle. Voted by Time Magazine as one of the ‘Ten Best Designs of our time’, this ground breaking gadget gives you ‘feel’ and control without the worry of taking a chunk out of your head.

And finally, the grooming gadget to end all grooming gadgets. Loved by women the world over, the ghd styler is less of an accessory and more of an institution. But for guys looking to retain a straight style or tame their unruly frizz, the mini version of the classic ghd uses the same unrivalled technology, but packs it into a compact edition that’s perfect for shorter men’s styles.

  • BaByliss for Men Easy Cut Clipper 7435U
Reader Opinion

We have shown you the latest in technology that should continue to shape our grooming routine over the next few years, so now we want to know your opinion:

  • Do any of you use any of the gadgets we have featured today?
  • How important are they to you within your daily routine now?
  • What grooming gadget (realistically) would you like to see created in the new few years?
  • Have you got a personal review (good or bad) about the products above?
  • Can you recommend any other grooming gadgets you just can’t live without?

Let us know in the comments below…

Main image above courtesy of: Remington