One of the hardest haircuts to do professionally is the skin fade. To go from skin to hair without leaving a line or shadow takes a lot of skill.
What if I told you there was a tool that could make that haircut much easier? That could allow you to get rid of that line without taking years of experience?
The Andis Shaver Profoil is that tool.
If you are a barber working in a busy shop that does a lot of bald fades, then this Andis foil shaver is a must have.
I’ll go into all the details in this review, but the short answer is because of the two titanium foil shaver heads.
Let’s dive right into the full review so you can see what I am talking about.
After you’ve read the whole review make sure you take a look at how the Andis foil shaver compares to Wahl electric shavers by clicking the link.
Anatomy of an Andis Profoil Shaver
This Andis shaver is simplicity itself.
In fact, it looks so plain that it may even appear to be an outdated electric shaver that your Grandfather used to use.
Don’t be fooled. This is a top of the line shaver that is not only sturdy enough to handle life in a busy barbershop, but it also has the technology to do a great job.
The Shaver Heads
Deceptively simple, the Andis Profoil heads are two rounded titanium foil guards that cover some very sharp razors underneath.
The razors are staggered head blades which makes this an ideal shaver since it is less prone to leaving razor bumps.
And the foil made of titanium is hypoallergenic and won’t leave guys with a rash or break out on their skin.
The holes are just the right size to allow the hair to enter the chamber and be cut by the blades, while they are also thin enough to get the shave right down to the nub. You’re going to get just as close as a razor using the Andis shaver.
The shape of the heads and the simplicity of the design means that you can get around all the contours of the head and face.
Powered by a Lithium Ion battery, the Andis shaver has a runtime of 80 minutes on a full charge.
The Andis Profoil charges by cord and can also be used while it is plugged in.
I usually have it plugged in when I am not using it so it never ends up running out of juice during the shift.
I love when a product uses Lithium Ion. Especially one that needs to be used professionally. They have the power to hack a busy barbershop without slowing down or giving mediocre results.
The other bonus is that they are able to hold a charge a long time. I don’t mean runtime. I mean that they can last years and still recharge fully. Cheaper nickel based batteries end up not being able to continue charging after a couple of years of use.
Made out of a sturdy polymer, the Andis Profoil body has a solid feel in the hand. It fits right in the palm of the hand and is surprisingly ergonomic, even though it doesn’t look like much.
It is very lightweight coming in at less than a third of a pound.
This is hugely important when using it professionally. If you do a lot of skin fades, then you’ll end up with hand fatigue when using a heavier electric razor.
The dimensions are 3 x 5 x 8 inches so you can see it is nicely compact. You can pretty much maneuver it wherever you need to while working on a customer or shaving your own face or head.
How the Andis Profoil Works
Dry shaving only
One of the downsides of the Andis foil shaver is that it can only be used dry. And bone dry at that. If there is any kind of moisture on the skin, like from sweat or from just getting out of the shower, it won’t work well and will gum up the blades.
But, since it works so well, it is just the way it operates so it doesn’t really matter at the end of the day. As a barber it just means less to clean up so there is a positive aspect.
Very close shave
On the face or the head, the Andis shaver will give you as close a shave as a razor. It glides so easily that it also gets close without causing irritation.
The angle of the shaving heads, combined with the thinness of the foil and the sharpness of the staggered head blades means you get the closest possible shave you can get from an electric. With less work I think the Andis shaver outperforms your typical and popular brands like Braun and Norelco.
This is true for curly, tough and wiry hair as well as fine, light and blond hair. It may not have a lot of bells and whistles but this is a feature not a lot of other brands can claim. Most other models are good at one kind of hair or the other but rarely both.
Another great feature that goes unsung is the rotary motor. Rather than using an electromagnetic motor that rocks the blades to oscillate them, it uses a pivot based rotary system. This means that it is very powerful and is able to keep up with the demands of a professional environment.
This is why it beats out more expensive brands like Braun as they don’t have that kind of motor and can’t work for hours on end because of it.
The Andis shaver is so quiet that practically the only noise you hear when shaving the stubble is the satisfying sound of the hair being shaved.
This is especially welcome in a busy shop that can often be a noisy, migraine inducing atmosphere.
How to Use the Andis Foil Shaver
For face shave
This is the easiest way to use the Andis shaver, but there are a couple of things to remember when using it to get the best results.
First, never use any pressure.
The Andis Profoil doesn’t have bumpers under the shaver heads like the kind you may be used to. These act sort of like springs to let the heads move around and can be gentle on the skin.
Without these, if you press too hard you can damage the foil over the blades that will need to be replaced.
The other problem with using pressure is that you end up cutting less and not getting a closer shave as you may think you’re doing.
Go easy and let the Andis Profoil and the blades do the work for a really close shave.
Keeping the razor at the optimal 45° angle is easy thanks to the way the heads are designed. One head is more recessed than the other so they can both have maximum contact with the skin. The one that protrudes out is the one on the bottom. Then just angle the shaver up so both of the heads are touching the skin. Then just use an up and down motion all over the face. Feel for spots that you may have missed.
For skin fades
Both concepts that I just mentioned for shaving the face remain, but with some other techniques to make sure you are giving as tight a fade as possible.
The first thing to consider is that you want to keep the area that you shave with the Andis Profoil low so you have room to work the fade. If you go to close to where you want to fade the line then you end up going very high on the fade to erase that line. Even if you are doing a high fade keep this in mind.
To work the Andis shaver, just gently go up and down on the area you want down to the skin just as you would on the face.
To blend the line in, take a trimmer like the Andis T Outliner and flick up against the very bottom of the line. Don’t use it like a clipper, just literally flick at the edge of the line.
There will still be a faint line at this point because there is still too much of a difference between the trimmer length and the skin.
Using only the bottom head of the Andis shaver, flick in a downwards motion going with the grain, or along the direction the hair grows to then erase what remains of the line or shadow.
Take a look at the video below for a quick guide on how to do this.
How to clean the Andis Profoil
After every haircut you should be cleaning out the hair and disinfecting the blade on your Andis shaver.
To do this, pop the foil head off of the shaver. You’ll be left with the foil cover on the top and the blades will be left exposed on the body.
Use a brush and gently, I repeat gently, wipe off any of the hair on the foil on the top and underside. Then spray with some clipper disinfectant. Wipe it with a towel or cloth to completely dry it.
Then use a brush on the blades themselves. And once you have the hair wiped away, give that a good spray too. Leave it open for a few minutes before replacing the cover so it has a chance to dry. You won’t be able to use the towel to dry the blades.
If you notice the blades starting to get dull after a while, usually in about 8 months to a year depending on how much they get used, then you will need to replace the blades.
You can pick up the whole kit here on Amazon.com. I recommend having this when you buy the shaver so that you have it on hand in case the foil or blades break and to not have to wait for it when you see the blades getting dull.
Who is the Andis foil shaver for?
I think barbers will get the most out of the Andis shaver, but don’t think it is limited to professionals.
If you are planning to use it at home for your face or head, then you will get a lot out of it.
It is not as easy on the skin as a Braun Series 9, or have all the bells and whistles, but I don’t think everybody needs that stuff.
Especially if you are on a budget as it costs a fraction of the higher end foil and rotary electric razors. The Andis foil shaver may have a low price, but it is not cheap by any stretch of the imagination.
By not giving you all the extras, you save money and still get a very high performing foil razor.
But, barbers will love that this is a workhorse that gets the job done day in and day out.
It can handle a lot of abuse that comes with doing many haircuts per day.
On any kind of hair, at that.
As I said in the introduction, I would be lost without the Andis shaver. The Andis Profoil is easily the most used electric foil shaver in a barbershop, with the Wahl 5 Star Shaver coming in second.
I have never once had an issue with the power, performance or battery. You can expect to get at least 3 or 4 years out of your Andis shaver if you use it heavily. With more light use, then it can last for as long as you need it to.
Just keep it maintained and cleaned and replace the blades occasionally and it will more than pay for itself.
Do you have any questions about the Andis shaver or any other electric shavers for barbers?
Drop a comment in the box below and I will get back to you as soon as I can!
I’m an outdoor enthusiast and have sported a full beard since I was in my early 20’s. Originally, growing a beard was a way to save time when getting ready each day, but I quickly realized that keeping a neatly trimmed beard takes work and some forethought. That’s where this site comes in.
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