Grooming is an essential aspect of any male’s life. Shaving facial hair is not just a part of grooming, but it has its own significance in this domain. A safety razor is a wise investment to make the most of this daily ritual.
It’s something that men have been taking part in for years, with shaving facial hair often being associated with cleanliness. Moreover, shaving is a regular activity, even if you keep facial hair. Some areas of the face still require cleaning up, and a razor is what men need for that.
Therefore, any man has to get the best razor possible. Not only do good double edge razors offer better performance than their counterparts, but they also ensure safety. Getting a well-manufactured double edge razor rather than a poorly made one can help people avoid various cuts and injuries. Hence, you need to get the best possible product. Let’s take a look at how you can judge the right one.
- What Double Edge Safety Razor to Buy?
- Why Double Edge Blades are Better
- How to Select the Best Safety Razor?
- Choosing the Best Safety Razor
What Double Edge Safety Razor to Buy?
The very first thing to ask yourself when you’re out looking for a razor is which kind of razor you should buy. The two most common options are the plastic cartridge razors and the safety razor blades. The former has been the more popular option for the past few decades. Plastic cartridge razors have all but replaced safety razor blades, which are often called double-edged razors as well.
The reason for the cartridge razor blade’s popularity is due to the supposed flexibility and degree of performance it offers. Gillette, with their plastic cartridge razors, dominate the global market and suggest it’s the best a man can get. In fact, almost all men and women use these razors once they reach puberty. It’s just the most popular option, fueled by smart marketing and exceptional brand value.
Double-edged razor blades have made safety razors feel like a thing of the past. However, of late, safety blades are seeing increased attention. While they were considered unsafe and risky before, various shaving experts are now offering guides on how to shave with them in a safe and controlled manner. Moreover, there is a fair amount of attention being given to the advantages a safety razor blade holds against the plastic cartridge option. Almost all experts favour the former.
Merkur Traditional Double Edge Safety Razor
Merkur Futur Adjustable Safety Razor
Edwin Jagger DE89LBL Lined Detail Chrome-Plated Double Edge Safety Razor
Seki Edge Feather AS-DZ Double Edge Safety Razor
Parker 98R Ultra Heavyweight Long Handle Safety Razor
Muhle R41 Open Tooth Comb Double Edge Safety Razor
Why Double Edge Blades are Better
Double-edged razor blades offer cleaner, sharper, and better performance than plastic cartridges do. Where Gillette often says that multiple blades are better than one, science says otherwise. Having a plastic cartridge with multiple blades means that you are limiting their effectiveness. It’s harder to get the most out of them due to the limited area, and their performance is affected due to this.
Furthermore, a greater number of blades mean increased irritation. No matter how much plastic cartridge razor manufacturers boast about smooth shaving experience, you are going to experience more irritation with one. Moreover, the shaving angles and the quality that a safety blade provides are superior to that of a plastic cartridge type.
Safety razor blades are built with better and stronger materials, as well. While a plastic cartridge uses weak plastic, a safety blade is usually made out of brass and is quite sturdy when compared with the plastic. It is also easier to clean due to the simple design and single blade. On the other hand, removing hair from a multi-blade plastic cartridge razor is always frustrating.
Various other factors make safety blade razors the better choice. Replacing double-edged razor blades is easier than replacing plastic cartridge razors, which is necessary to understand. Hence, a reassessment of the benefits that double-edge razors offer shows that it’s far superior to the plastic cartridge models. However, to get the best from them, you need to choose the best one.
How to Select the Best Safety Razor?
While safety razor blades are the top choice for any man, picking the right one is tricky. This is because they are not as widely made as to their plastic cartridge counterparts. The latter offers an unmatched variety that makes finding a good one easier. Contrarily, double-edged razor blades are far more specific and need to be put under far more scrutiny.
Some things that you need to check out in any safety razor while you consider it is:
1. The Design
There are four typical designs offered for safety razor blades:
- three-piece, and
- butterfly head
The butterfly head design is a type of one-piece razor. Similarly, each design has its specific use and specialty. The three-piece is the most popular out of the bunch and is favoured for its multi-purpose use. On the other hand, the two-piece is preferred by many wet-shavers due to its smooth shaving experience. Finally, the one-piece designs hold distinction amongst the rest for having a rotating handle that opens the cutting head.
All safety blade razors are double-edged, allowing you to shave from either side of the cutting head.
For many, this aspect is the most important of all. Double-edged razor blades are generally more expensive than plastic cartridge razors. Finding the right one means judging the price as well. You do not want to spend too much on a safety razor, but being stingy might mean compromising on quality. Thus, finding a balance between price and quality is essential when picking a good safety double-edged razor. They usually range anywhere from $10 to $200.
4. The Handle
One unique feature of safety razor blades is the length of the handles. They come with a variety, and picking the right fit for yourself ensures maximum satisfaction. You need to look for the handle length that fits in your hand the best. It should neither be too long or too short. If you’re searching for the best shaving experience imagine, the handle length needs to be just right.
5. Adjustable Blade or Fixed
Double-edged razor blades traditionally have a fixed blade. They cutting head and the blade can’t be moved around to get rid of hair in the nosiest of areas. However, some manufacturers are now developing safety razor blades with adjustable blades, increasing the usability and importance of the blades while also making them more accessible.
Safety razor blades can be quite heavy. They are made out of brass or metals after all. However, the weight does not point towards the proficiency of the razor. In fact, a heavier razor is harder to maneuver and not as easy to handle. You do not want the weight of your blade to hamper your shaving experience. Test out as many razors as possible to find one that feels just right inside your hand. Weight matters and you have to pick a weight that feels just for you.
Choosing the Best Safety Razor
Knowing all this, you can now go to the market and select the best safety razor blade available. There are numerous options, each with its own specific use and positives. You need to check their features based on the six points discussed above, and find something that gives you a great balance between all six.
If you’re looking for a good start to your double-edge razor buying journey, here are some blades that we recommend:
Merkur Traditional Double Edge Safety Razor
A personal favourite, a Merkur traditional safety razor of this style was given to Artisanshaving’s founder when he was just 15 years old and he continues to use it every day.
The design is quite heavy which is satisfying for some users who like to gently use the weight of the razor to shave rather than applying pressure to the face. This feels both engineered and powerful as well as delicate and gentle.
One of the big perks of the Merkur traditional safety razor is its length. Many double edge razors are much shorter to save on material and postage costs as well as to give a more utilitarian feel. This is something much more luxurious that feels like you picked it up yourself from a high-end shaving supplier – and they are indeed stocked at such St James’ establishments as Truefitt & Hill and Taylors of Old Bond Street. Today though you can have one shipped quickly and cheaply to your door courtesy of Amazon.
- Long textured handle for extra grip and control.
- Heavy weight to let the razor do the shaving rather than your arm.
- Wide base so you can stand it upright.
- Solid German Solingen Steel – unlike many cheaper brands the Merkur will survive plenty of drops.
Any conversation about the best safety razor blades cannot end without mentioning Merkur. The manufacturer has a unique reputation amongst its competition, having manufactured and designed fine adjustable razor blades for over 30 years.
Their entire production process is nothing short of art. They craft with science at the back of each small tick and move, designing and developing something that is supposed to hold scientifically against all competitors. The result of such a unique and special production method is gorgeous razor blades that provide exceptional service.
The Futur Adjustable Safety Razor is just one of the many they offer to clients. However, when it comes to double-edge razor blades, there aren’t razors much better than it. It’s designed to excel as a razor blade, giving you a shave that’s both smooth and classy. Moreover, its exceptional features are put together in a fantastic chrome body that is bound to catch eyes. With the Futur, you shave in style.
The Merkur Future has several pros that make it one of the top choices for men’s razors. Some of its most salient features include:
- Fantastic look: you have to choose between gold-plated chrome, satin, and a simple chrome finish, all of which prove to be delectable options.
- Long handle: The Futur ensures that you have a great grip at all times, with its long handle making for easy control and maneuvering.
- Good weight: It’s heavy, but not enough to be distractingly so. Its weight is enough to help you get the shave you desire.
- Adjustable settings: the adjustable feature allows you to customize the way you use the razor, ensuring a comfortable and classy shave for all kinds of people.
- Superior make and design: developed in Germany, this razor purports the notion that German-made men grooming items are exceptional.
The Merkur Futur has only one con worth mentioning. It has a bulky head that doesn’t move around well with the nose and lips area. You’ll have to stretch them out to make use of it.
Similar to Merkur, Edwin Jagger has a solid reputation in men’s grooming because of its sustained exceptional quality. Manufactured in England, Edwin Jagger’s reputation extends to quality safety razor blades for various uses and skin types. However, their DE89Lbl line of safety razors holds precedence over the rest.
The reason for DE89Lbl’s success as a safety razor is the fact that it’s unbeatable when it comes to sensitive skin. Sensitive skin is far more prone to experiencing cuts, nicks, and injuries while shaving. The Edwin Jagger is the very best at helping you avoid that. That’s not to say that its blades aren’t sharp or as effective as other safety razors, but its precision allows you to shave hair quickly and efficiently, without having to experience injuries. It offers exceptional balance and is a razor you will not hesitate to use.
The Edwin Jagger DE89Lbl has several pros that make it worth taking a look at. These include:
- Great body balance: the weight all along the double-edged razor is exceptionally balanced and construed. You will not feel it imposing on your hand in any way. The fantastic body balance will instead make it quite easy to maneuver.
- Fantastic for sensitive skin: the precision shaving offered by DE89Lbl ensures that you won’t have to go through the same spot again. Your skin will not be subject to repeated interaction with the blade.
- Durable: there’s no need to worry about this razor’s life. It’s going to stick with you for a long time and be reliable too.
The only negative aspect of the Edwin Jagger DE89Lbl is the fact that its handle is short and limits maneuverability.
From the exceptional packing to the high-quality service, this safety razor ensures that each moment you spend using it is rewarding. It’s a luxury product with a price tag that might make you balk when you first look at it. However, once you use it, it will prove to be well worth the price you paid for it.
Made from stainless steel, this quality double-edged safety razor provides exceptional performance while being durable. It’s designed to ensure a comfortable shave, and it is going to give you unbelievable performance for a long time to come.
It’s a razor that many people buy as their very first. While the price tag is not a joke by any means, its quality more than compensates. Moreover, the exceptional life of this safety razor makes it a great return on your investment. It’s quality in every aspect.
The various positive aspects of the Seki Edge Feather AS-DZ include:
- Superior performance: The Feather blades are renowned worldwide for their surgical precision and exceptional shave.
- Durable: with medical grade stainless steel being used to develop this beautiful safety razor, you are assured a long and durable life. This razor is going to stick with you through thick and thin.
- Easy to learn: while the specific angle for this razor makes it hard to adjust at the start, the shave you get is consistent and regular. You will not have to worry about testing out this double-edged razor. There is no learning curve to it, and beginners can find it quite easy to use from the very start.
Although this may be a pro for some, the handle is considered by many reviewers to be too compact at 4 inches long. However, that depends a lot on personal preference.
While the previous razor has been called out for its relatively shorter handle, this one gives the opposite. The Parker 98R Ultra is recognized in the market for its very long handle, helping you reach any area of your face without a problem.
It’s not just the handle that’s big. The whole razor is considered to be the heavyweight of safety double-edged razor blades. Coming in a whopping 4.3 ounces, it is larger and heavier than most of its contemporaries. However, there’s more to this razor than its heaviness.
The Parker 98R Ultra combines a beautiful design with meticulous production. Its beautiful brass construction and thrilling finish give it a great look. Moreover, it’s a highly personalized development that aims to fit user needs. The razor can be easily disassembled, cleaned, and put together with ease.
However, should you go for such a heavy razor? Many people do prefer heavier razors since they do the job without requiring as much effort from the person using them. However, it’s all about what you’re comfortable with and what gives you the best shave. Hence, if you like a heavier razor, there’s no need to second guess it.
Beyond the long handle, the Parker 98R Ultra offer:
- Durability: it’s going to stick with you for a long time to come.
- Quality construction: the brass construction is fantastic. It’s a great, sturdy make that looks beautiful with a shiny yet simple finish.
- Easy grip: the long handle factors to provide an easy grip.
- Easy to dismember: it’s quite easy to clean for its size due to simple dismemberment.
While it is big, heavy, and durable, the Parker 98R Ultra does not offer the same quality of finish as many of its competitors.
The unique appearance of this safety razor and its performance have given it a special nickname: It’s known as “the Beast” in the market, and its reputation always precedes itself. However, this razor is respected rather than derided by people.
The Muhle R41 is a special case, and it’s simply because of the brute that it is. It is one of the most aggressive razors around, with blades that can hurt quite badly. You need significant experience to use it properly. Its long teeth have earned it the Open Tooth name, and the shave it gives is exceptional if you’re careful that is.
The Muhle R41 is often not recommended to beginners or those not experienced with using safety double-edged razors. Moreover, it is not recommended for people with sensitive skin either. A single irregular movement could lead to a very bad cut, one that is going to bleed for a long time.
So, if you’re not sure about your skills with a razor, try to keep yourself away from the “Beast”. Its teeth are reason enough to stay wary of it. However, if you’re skilled, then the Muhle R41 is going to give you a shave you’ll adore.
“The Beast” has built its strong reputation due to the following positives:
- Ergonomic design: the exceptional design meets many users’ demands and is all about giving people the best possible shave, with the perfect handle length.
- Close shave: the teeth of the cutting head allow for a very close shave that gives a lot of control to the user of the razor.
- Three designs: there are multiple designs to choose from. You don’t have to limit yourself when it comes to the look.
- Weighs good: while it looks massive, the Muhle R41 does not weigh as much as you would expect. It’s fairly light for its size and easy to handle.
This goes without saying, but the Muhle R41 should not be used by anyone who is not good with a razor. It is bound to hurt any beginner and could cause serious cuts and nicks if used without prior training. Moreover, it also troubles sensitive skin with its sharp blades.
These five safety razor blades make for the best that the market has to offer. They combine great designs with thrilling development, leading to special results. Safety razor blades outrank plastic cartridge razors in almost every single department, and these razors can show you exactly why.
Rather than being limited to what your plastic cartridge razor offers you, you can explore your own needs with a safety razor blade. You can go for any length, size, and cutting power. Double-edged razor blades help you explore far more than what safety razors do. You can go through various options with different characteristics and pick one that meets your needs specifically. Hence, for a true shaving experience, there’s nothing better than a safety razor blade.
Out of the five listed above, the choice for a beginner would either be Merkur Future or the Seki Edge. The Edwin Jagger is perfect for those with sensitive skin, while the Muhle R41 is strictly for the experienced and well-trained. All five of these safety razors have their particular use, and they give an exceptional performance to users in their domains. Hence, when choosing between them, try to ascertain what you need from your new safety razor. Make the choice that best attunes to your requirements.
I’m on a mission to help millions of people around the world ditch expensive and wasteful plastic cartridge razors and switch to traditional safety razors that are far better for the planet.
I discovered the joy of traditional shaving when I was just 14, less than a year after I even started shaving at all. I loved the time-honoured ceremony, precision and quality of soap, brush, razor and aftershave.
My double-edge safety razor from Merkur is still the same one I use every day, although I’ve enjoyed experimenting with a range of models over the years.
Paradoxically I have also been through a long list of interesting facial hair styles, but have never stuck with a full beard. Instead I am normally sporting very intricate mixes of sideburns, moustache and goatee that makes a good shaving system essential.