Test and Review: Foil electric shaver Braun Series 9 9290cc Clean&Charge Wet&Dry

Pros
  • High quality shave
  • Dry and wet shaving
  • Charging and cleaning station
  • Travel case
Cons
  • Trimmer quality as with lower models
  • Manual cleaning is a pain
Total rating
4.5/5

The Braun 9290cc is a good choice for men with sensitive skin or a close-fitting beard. When shaving, the Series 9 provides a very high level of comfort. You will hardly find a faster and more thorough shave with other razors. If you're after the best, trust that Braun's flagship shaver is indeed the best in its category.

Datum poslední aktualizace
Published: 11/19/2017
Datum poslední aktualizace
Last update: 07/30/2022
Table of contents
Braun Series 9 9290cc
  • High quality shave
  • Dry and wet shaving
  • Charging and cleaning station
  • Travel case
Rating
4.5/5

Braun is a well-known German manufacturer of men's and women's cordless electric shavers. You're certainly familiar with this brand, but did you know that Braun is also the world's largest manufacturer of shavers with a foil shaving head?

If you expect maximum care and a unique shaving experience, you'll definitely want to try the Braun Series 9 9290cc shaver. But how to try such a shaver? Yes, you are right. For hygiene reasons, it's problematic for both the customer and the retailer. However, you don't have to hesitate. In this review, you will learn all the essentials.

Accessories

In this class of shavers, you would expect a variety of accessories, not quite the case. You won't find anything out of the ordinary in the package, except for the automatic cleaning station. But don't despair, you buy a shaver for its capabilities, not for how much plastic nonsense (that you'll never use) you get with it.

Package contents:

  • Foil electric shaver Braun Series 9 9290cc,
  • automatic cleaning and power station,
  • 1x cleaning station tray,
  • power cord,
  • hard travel case,
  • cleaning brush,
  • user manual.
Braun Series 9 9290cc Package Contents
Braun Series 9 9290cc Package Contents

Braun Series 9 9290cc Shaver Features

Features are aplenty on this premium, technologically advanced device. We will present only the most important ones.

Four individual shaving elements

Unlike other Braun shaver ranges, this type of shaver has a shaving head with four shaving elements that move. In addition, the shaver head itself also moves and has a vibration function.

  • Two planchet shaving elements that use hexagonal perforations. This shape, compared to the round perforation, captures more beard and uses the surface area more efficiently.
  • The "HyperLift & Cut" (lift and trim) feature is new to the 9 Series. This shaving element allows you to shave beards that are adhered to the skin. As the name implies by lifting the beard away from the skin and then trimming it. HyperLift & Cut is easily recognizable on the shaver head. It is golden. This color is achieved by a special anti-corrosion protection that ensures the sharpness and permanence of the material.
  • "Direct & Cut" captures unruly beards that grow in different directions.
The four elements of a shaving head in practice.
The four elements of a shaving head in practice.

Braun states in some advertising materials that the shaving head contains not 4 shaving elements, but 5. This is not entirely true unless you consider the skin protector as a shaving element. This protector is actually a piece of protruding metal that promotes better running on the skin and protects your skin from injury from the shaving head. On the shaving head, it is located between the "Direct & Cut" and the blade.

SyncroSonic Technology

With the Series 9, Braun did away with the personalization option that we saw with the Series 7. Personalization consisted of allowing the user to choose the power of the razor based on the area they were in with the shaving head. This functionality was rather unnecessary on the Series 7. Braun showed that it thought the same thing.

Instead, engineers implemented a technology called SyncroSonic. This technology can detect the density of the beard and adjust the output completely automatically. You can also find this feature in Panasonic's high-end shavers. Personally, I would prefer the full power of the shaver at all times of use, regardless of the density of the beard.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5

We did not observe any significant benefit in the implementation of SyncroSonic technology. Its absence might at least bring the price down a bit.

10D Flexible Shaving System

According to Braun, the shaving head can be positioned in up to 10 directions. I have no idea how Braun came up with the number 10. However, I can tell you in good conscience that the positioning head is something that really works. What's more, you're not likely to find a better positioning head solution with any other razor at the moment. Plus, you can lock the shaving head in a specific position for better shaving precision.

Waterproof and wet & dry

The name already makes it clear that the shaver allows both dry and wet shaving. What you wouldn't guess from the name is that you can submerge the shaver up to 5m deep. So you can talk about a certain waterproofness. But don't push your luck, because we are not liable for unsuccessful claims. If you do not intend to dive with the shaver, but appreciate the possibility of shaving in the shower or maintenance by rinsing under a stream of water, you will certainly appreciate this feature.

Automatic Cleaning Station

Since this review focuses on the Braun Series 9 9290cc model, we can't leave out the cleaning station.

But be careful when buying. The 92xxcc model names have a cleaning station, whereas the 92xxs have neither.

Yes, the CC in the model name represents that (Clean & Charge) cleaning station.

Other Features

In addition to the above, the Braun Series 9 offers other fairly standard features such as:

  • Trimmer,
  • Travel lock,
  • Quick charge (within 5 minutes the machine is charged in one shave),
  • LED display with battery status indication.

We'll take a look at some of these features in more detail later in the review.

Quality of workmanship and ergonomics

The older Braun Series 7 had a shaving head made of metal. Panasonic Arc 5 body made of stunning brushed aluminum.

I was quite surprised to find out that Braun decided to use plastic for the Series 9. In this class? Sad.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5

At least Braun made the main silver part of the handle matte on the 9290cc model. Compared to the shiny chrome of the 9095 and 9295cc, the shaver not only looks better, but is not as susceptible to fingerprints and dirt. However, there are still shiny silver areas around the power button and virtually all over the shaving head.

Design is a subjective matter. But my opinion is that the Braun Series 9 is a very hilarious piece. If it had a metal body, there would be nothing to fault it. The absence of metal adds to the weight of the shaver. It's surprisingly lightweight and great to handle. Even the higher girth top is no obstacle.

The rear, rubberized portion of the shaver will provide a secure hold.
The rear, rubberized part of the shaver will provide a reliable grip.

Thanks to the rubber surface on the back of the shaver body, the Braun Series 9 is well balanced and also safe. It doesn't slip in any way and you grip it with complete confidence. The trimmer on the back is also covered with this material. This makes it all the easier to slide out. Personally, I would have preferred to extend the rubber surface to the front of the shaver as well, as he did with the Braun Series 5.

The front of the shaver has a built-in LED display, an ON/OFF button that also acts as a travel lock when pressed for a long time. Dominating the controls is a switch to lock the shaving head.

The shaving head can be locked in 5 different positions, allowing for precision shaving in tight spaces. Lock is achieved by pressing the switch downwards. The locking head mechanism has undergone a dramatic change compared to the Series 7. The Series 7 mechanism was quite vulnerable when more pressure was applied to the locked head, with the Series 9 you should not be in danger of this.

The downside of the positionable head is the switch itself, which despite being covered in dimples, is slippery. If you generally dry shave, this won't be a problem, otherwise, prepare yourself with more strength and patience. The Series 5's rubberized switch was significantly better in this regard.

On the back of the trimmer, you'll primarily find a trimmer and metal pins that are used for charging via a charging station. The feeling of pulling out the trimmer is very pleasant. In the extended position, it narrowly misses the shaving head In case you extend the trimmer which has the shaving head in the way (whose range of motion is quite large), automatically the extension occurs and the trimmer does not hit the shaving head.

Braun deserves a lot of praise for this detail. The shaving head, or cassette, is high quality and fits beautifully into place. It is also easy to remove from the machine by pressing two buttons on the side of the shaving head. I must mention, however, that there have been quite a few cases where the Series 9 shaving head has fallen apart after only a few months of use. The culprit in these cases is usually the "HyperLift & Cut" feature.

Braun was aware of this error and corrected it in production, so the new gold-colored shaving heads should be completely safe, unlike the blue ones.

The Braun Series 9 9290cc case is really good quality
The Braun Series 9 9290cc case is really good quality

The case is made by. Plus, it's nice that Braun makes it standard on lower-end models like the Series 5. The case provides great protection, looks good, and feels quality.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5

The overall impression of the build quality and ergonomics of the Braun Series 9 9290cc is quite convincing, but personally I would have expected more from a flagship. Especially in terms of the use of metal and also less kitschy chrome parts.

German quality

Are you looking for lower quality products from China or India? In the case of the Braun 9290cc, you don't have to. The brand's flagship model is made in Germany, just like the other models in the brand's portfolio.

Battery life and charging

Earlier versions of the Series 9, such as the 9009cc, allowed shaving with the power cord attached. However, they did not offer a wet & dry function like the 9290cc.

So, for safety reasons, the Braun Series 9 9290cc does not allow charging while shaving.

Good news for individuals with sensitive skin and wet palms, the shaver won't kill them! If you generally dry shave, you need not despair. The battery life of the shaver is excellent. If it still runs out of power, thanks to the fast charging, you can recharge it in 5 minutes and it will last you one shave.

In testing, the 9290cc model typically lasted 10 or more shaves on one full charge, which is very good. Charging itself is a fairly quick affair. In 60 minutes, the battery is 100% charged. You can charge the stack by plugging in the power cord, or by inserting it into the station. The battery level during charging is indicated by flashing LEDs in 5 levels (each representing 20%.

No need to worry about sudden battery drain, Braun Series 9 indicates last 9 minutes.
No need to worry about sudden battery drain, Braun Series 9 indicates last 9 minutes.

A great feature is the time countdown, when the charge level is low. The machine will display the remaining time to shave from 9 minutes, until the battery is completely drained. You won't be left with one face shaved but not the other.

Shaving

Now we come to the most important part of this review. Let's talk about how the foil electric shaver actually shaves and what you can expect when using it. I used the Braun Series 9 9290cc for 4 weeks for both daily shaving, every other day shaving, and every other day shaving. Despite having sensitive skin, I used dry shaving most of the time, however for the purposes of the review I couldn't leave out the foam shave. How does the machine actually shave?

I can honestly say that the Braun Series 9 9290cc provides one of the most enjoyable and comfortable shaves of any electric shaver I've had the opportunity to try so far.

Shave Thoroughness

I can confirm the above. The shave closeness is excellent, probably one of the best you can ask for in an electric shaver today. I'd say the Panasonic Arc 5 is perhaps a little better, but the difference was so close in my case that I really can't say for sure, considering we're all different. Of course, I didn't apply any pressure while shaving and only ran the shaver over sensitive areas once. The shaver achieves such excellent results while being as comfortable as possible to use.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5

I personally find it very difficult to shave the area above my upper lip where my beard is thick and hard. Often I have to stay there for a long time with other shavers and apply enough pressure to get at least some results. However, with the 9290cc everything went comfortably and smoothly, no pushing or multiple swiping back and forth. A thorough shave without any discomfort.

Comfort

When it comes to comfort, the Series 9 9290cc is in a class of its own. The Series 7 isn't bad, however with the Series 9 I subjectively felt a smoother, faster and more pleasant shave. Braun achieved this result through a combination of factors such as increased power and the fact that the blades stay relatively cool despite the longer shave time.

Long, close-fitting beard? No problem

Another surprise for me was how well the Series 9 handles long, skin-tight beards. I have such a problem area, especially around my neck, where my beard grows in different directions, plus it sticks to my skin. However, this shaver has handled it the best so far, of the shavers I have experienced so far. I don't want to repeat myself too much, but there it is.

And as for the close-fitting beard? That's the achilles heel of most electric shavers, but not the Braun Sereis 9 9290cc!

I haven't experienced any tugging, biting, pinching (whatever you want to call it) with the razor, even in the two or three days between shaves. The excellent efficiency of catching unruly beards is also one of the reasons why the shaver lasts for more than 10 shaving cycles. You simply get it done very quickly. Then there are the 4 massive elements of the shaving head see the introductory section of the review.

Outside of the latest Arc 5 ES-LV9N, the Series 9 has probably the best implementation of a flexible shaving head. This works flawlessly and allows you to keep constant contact with your skin, even if you have more pronounced features. When shaving your jaw or chin, you will feel a real difference compared to other shavers, I can guarantee it.

The Series 9 is relatively quiet and doesn't vibrate in any major way, certainly not like the Series 5. The smooth operation does add something to the comfort, but most importantly you'll feel like you got your money's worth.

Orientation of the shaving head, does it matter?

You may not have known this, but the shaving cartridge can be fitted to Series 9 models in two different orientations.

Does shaving head orientation affect shaving performance?
Does shaving head orientation affect shaving performance?

Which brings me to the question, does orientation affect shaving performance? Braun says no. You can read in some sources that it does. So I'll have to try it out for myself. To find out, I shaved half my face with setting #1, then rotated the cartridge 180° and shaved the other half of my face with setting #2. To my surprise, I observed a difference. It wasn't great, but with the HyperLif & Cut setting in a higher position on the machine (setting #2), I felt the shave was smoother and the machine was more effective at capturing longer, close-fitting beards. Anyway, a number of factors can affect the outcome and definitely try each shaving scenario for yourself. Personally, I wouldn't be surprised if you didn't notice a difference.

Trimmer

The trimmer on the 9290cc evokes mixed feelings in me. I like its position. The extension and retraction works beautifully smoothly and it is also adequately wide. In the extended position, it protrudes above the shaving head, which I'm sure you'll appreciate. That way you can see what you're trying to trim and nothing is in the way of your view.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5

Unfortunately, I have to trim the area multiple times before I get the desired result. Is it blunt?

As a rule, I use the trimmer to trim the sideburns and surrounding area. However, with the 9290cc it takes a lot of work. I have found that the Braun Series 3 and 5 are doing just as well as the Series 9. This isn't a reason I wouldn't buy a trimmer, but the trimmer could still be much better than it is."

Wet Shave with 9290cc

Personally, I prefer wet shaving to dry shaving. I usually get a better result that way, and it's also less painful and smoother. But since the Braun Series 9 is supremely comfortable and provides a surprisingly close shave, I've mostly used it for dry shaving.

In the case of wet shaving with this particular shaver, I felt really excellent comfort and thoroughness, however in my case the difference was negligible compared to dry shaving. Thus, the negligible difference was outweighed by the superior care when shaving with gel. This is quite unusual, as I usually get better results with wet shaving. Especially with Panasonic and Philips shavers. However, this will mainly be because the Braun is far more comfortable.

So the bottom line is that I don't need shaving foam or gel when using the 9290cc shaver.

There is another reason why I prefer to stick with dry shaving though, I'll tell you about that in the next part of the review.

Cleaning and Maintenance

The model name carrying cc indicates that you will get an automatic cleaning and charging station (Clean & Charge) with the machine.

As a result, you have two options for cleaning the Series 9:

  • automatic cleaning,
  • manual cleaning.

Simple, right? So let's get started with the auto-cleaning.

Auto Cleaning

The supplied station is specific to the Braun Series 9. Together with a Series 3, 5 or 7 you will receive a different station. The stations for all series support the same cleaning cartridges. However, the unit for the Series 9 also features a built-in fan for drying the shaver. The Series 7 uses induction heat, while the Series 3 and 5 have no active drying technology, so logically their cleaning process is more tedious.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5

The cleaning station therefore not only cleans, but also dries, charges and lubricates your Braun flagship.

So let's take a closer look at the cleaning station that comes standard with the 9290cc model.

Cleaning station design is great as long as you dry shave.
The cleaning station design is excellent as long as you shave dry.

Design-wise, the station is very similar to the one you get with the Series 5. Which doesn't make much sense at first glance, since they are two different categories of shavers in terms of price and performance. However, these model series are very similar in both design and proportion. Therefore, the manufacturer has done as it has done.

On the station we find the main button, which we press to start the cleaning and drying process. Above this button you will also find simple explanations on how you should and should not use the station. You simply should not use the station if the head is dripping water or foam.

Do you think that's a little odd for a machine with Wet & Dry? You're right. In my opinion, this is a pretty major drawback. What does Braun mean by that?

If you use the shaver in the shower, or have used cream, foam, gel, or anything similar when shaving, you must first manually wash and dry the razor before putting it in the cleaning station. Sad.

The foam or gel could damage the station, so you will have to undergo this martyrdom over and over again. Plus, drying is not a matter of seconds. Given how complicated the shaving head is, wiping with a napkin is out of the question. Cleaning stations from Philips or Panasonic have a distinct advantage in this respect, because none of the above applies to them.

Manual maintenance won't be an obstacle for you if you shave with the dry method. Otherwise, consider a Philips or Panasonic, it's really not worth it.

Back to the cleaning station though. You open the base where the cleaning cartridge is located by pushing the button on the back along with sliding the station upwards. The transparent plastic container slides out the same way, but towards the back. Do not forget to remove the plastic cap when installing the new cartridge.

You can do the refill change with your left rear.
You can change the cartridge with your left rear.

Then you close the station, plug in the cable and everything works. Now all you have to do is slide the machine into place. The cleaning cycle is very short, taking just over 2 minutes.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5
  • automatic switching on of the machine,
  • application of cleaning and lubricating fluid inside the shaving head to remove dirt and cuttings,
  • switching off the machine.

Braun Series 9 9290cc will tell you when it wants to clean itself. This need is indicated by the water droplets on the machine itself lighting up. The station evaluates the condition of the machine, based on which it selects the appropriate cleaning mode: short, normal or high intensity mode.

The selected program is again symbolized by water droplets, for a change on the station itself:

  • short - one drop,
  • normal - two drops,
  • high intensity mode - three drops.

Despite this "artificial intelligence", my station has never selected any mode other than high intensity mode. This is even if I have done manual cleaning before. However, the high intensity cleaning mode takes about 3 minutes, so it is not a problem, at least in my eyes.

You'll be pleased with the perfume. A pleasant citrus scent emanates from the station throughout the process. Very nice detail.

Once the cleaning process is complete, the drying fan inside the station turns on to blow out the shaver head. The air passes only inside the station through the blades or shaver head.

Because the cleaning fluid contains alcohol, it evaporates relatively quickly. The drying process takes less than 40 minutes. The drying process is not very noisy, but not completely silent like the Series 7 station, which uses induction heat for drying. I measured approximately 35dB in the immediate vicinity of the station. In the room, the natural noise level was 24dB. You can think of 35dB as a quiet library environment.

The blanks are slippery after cleaning, which suggests that the cleaning fluid is also a lubricant, so you don't have to worry about lubrication.

The result is a clean shaving head that's ready for the next use.

The shaver didn't disappoint me in any way during the test and did its job to a tee every time. It is truly a wonderful thing to always have your machine ready. Full of energy, lubricated, perfectly clean and also with a citrus scent. After removing the machine from the station, I made a detailed inspection and found only a few traces of cleaning medium on the top of the capsule, but not on the machine head itself.

The cleaning station is simply a must have, I could hardly imagine using a shaver without it. The price of refills is not exorbitant. However, Philips and Panasonic offer refills for their stations cheaper and they also last longer.

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5
Replacement cartridge size.
Spare cartridge size.

The life of the cartridges can be extended very easily, just split the shaving head, carefully knock the cuttings into the basket and start the automatic cleaning afterwards.

If you do not intend to use the station on a daily basis, it is advisable to remove it and seal it with a stopper. Alcohol evaporates fairly quickly and after a while the cartridge would spontaneously evaporate. Of course, the life of the refill depends on how often you use the station. On average, a refill will last 1 - 2 months.

Manual cleaning

Right now, manual cleaning of the 9290cc (or any of the Series 9) is a piper! Try as I might, it's almost impossible to get rid of all the clippings inside the rather complicated cartridge mechanism. You can use the supplied brush and sweep out most of the debris with it, rinse the shaving head under hot water, or even use liquid soap.

Despite your best efforts, even after this process, you will probably find more dirt inside your head. For machines that can be cleaned easily, I recommend not getting a cleaning station. However, this is the opposite case. Definitely don't get a machine without a station. Avoid models with s, such as the 9293s.

Spare parts

A whole story could be told about spare parts, or more specifically Series 9 shaving heads (cartridges). Their sales started after the launch of the shaver. However, to buy a replacement head for the 90s and 90b models, you had to be really lucky and have quite a bit of money. Later, there were many reports that the shaving heads were very faulty and would literally fall apart after a few months.

Happily, with the introduction of the updated Series 9, Braun began outsourcing the production of the shaving heads. After a brief initial production downtime, the shaving heads are now available seamlessly and at a lower price than before. At the same time, there are no longer reports of high failure rates. The Braun Series 9 9290cc uses 92s silver replacement shaving heads.

The 92s/92b variants are also backwards compatible with older Series 9 models. Braun recommends replacing the shaving head on Series 9 every 18 months. Realistically, of course, it depends on how often you use the shaver, your beard type, maintenance and other factors.

Price

The name "Series 9" itself suggests that the Braun 9290cc is not in the lowest class of electric shavers, but rather in the highest. You can assess how this translates into price for yourself.

Conclusion - who is the Braun Series 9 9290cc for?

A simple conclusion could be the following sentence. The Braun 9290cc has met most of my expectations, exceeded some and disappointed me in some small ways. But that could be the end of all reviews, so let's break it down. There's a lot you'll love about this shaver, it excels especially in:

  • unique shaving comfort,
  • great shaving head efficiency,
  • fast, effortless shaving,
  • reliably shaves stuck-on, unruly beards,
  • you'll hardly find a closer shave among electrics.

And you won't like it above all:

Where to buy Braun Series 9 9290cc
Recenze elektrického holicího strojku pro muže Braun Series 9 9290cc.
Rating
4.5/5
  • flagship processing handled better by Philips or Panasonic,
  • absence of premium materials,
  • unusable cleaning station when wet shaving,
  • weaker trimmer.

But there is only one product. However, it can be stated that what the Braun Series 9 9290cc was made for, it does perfectly.

If you're unsure about your choice of machine, you can rest assured that this model will not disappoint. Whether you are a heavy user or this is your first foil electric shaver, you will most likely be satisfied.

If you have a fine beard, the Braun Series 9 will probably be a cannon for sparrows and certainly the Series 5 or even the Series 3 will do the trick.The Series 9 is also a good choice for those individuals who:

  • have sensitive skin
  • are bothered by the heating blades,
  • have a close-fitting beard,
  • have unruly beards that grow in different directions,
  • shave only occasionally (the shaver can handle even a 3-day beard).

Braun Series 9 9290cc User Manual

Braun Series 9 9290cc
  • Shave quality
  • Built quality
  • Battery
  • Value
4.5

The best foil electric shaver

The Braun 9290cc is a good choice for men with sensitive skin or a close-fitting beard. When shaving, the Series 9 provides a very high level of comfort. You will hardly find a faster and more thorough shave with other razors. If you're after the best, trust that Braun's flagship shaver is indeed the best in its category.

Pros

  • High quality shave
  • Dry and wet shaving
  • Charging and cleaning station
  • Travel case

Cons

  • Trimmer quality as with lower models
  • Manual cleaning is a pain
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Test and Review: Foil electric shaver Braun Series 9 9290cc Clean&Charge Wet&Dry
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