The best open comb razor will deliver the smoothest shave without razor burn, but in this small market of open comb razors which one is it?
Some double edged razors feature an open comb of teeth that acts as a safety guard between the blade and the skin, as opposed to the safety bar seen on most closed comb razors.
The gaps between these open comb teeth direct the bristles towards the blade for a more efficient cut. The best open comb razors deliver a closer shave, while the comb still keeps the skin tight and protects it from the blade.
Some users have also shared that an open comb safety razor lets more lather into the shaving area. Read more about open comb vs closed comb razors here.
In terms of availability, open comb razors tend to be quite popular, although there aren’t many models out there. In the paragraphs below, we shall have a closer look at some of the best open comb safety razors available on the market today.
Best Open Comb Razor Top Picks
Merkur 25C is an open comb razor that is very suitable for men with tough and thick stubble. The safety razor has got a 3.87-inch-long handle with some decent knurling and elegant chrome coating. After applying the lather, you should just slide the razor along the contours of your face with minimum pressure.
Merkur 25C has a total weight of just 2.01oz, while 23C weighs in at 2.12 oz. In terms of total length, both models are equal. This safety razor is durable and precise, while the blades that it uses are widely available and inexpensive.
While Merkur 23C is popular with women, it is also very mild, and so many wet shavers prefer the open comb 25C. The 25C is just a tiny bit more aggressive than the 23C, but it is still a great option for ladies who’ve been longing for a quick, safe, and hustle-free shave.
Merkur 25C comes with a test blade inside, but you can always replace it with one to your preference. When you screw the head in place, make sure that the blade is equally exposed on both sides. Caution: the razor blade does protrude to the left and right, so don’t touch the shaving plate when loaded.
When you unscrew the head, use a towel to protect your fingers from the bade. When you screw the shaving plate, you’ll see how nicely it fits on the handle without any wiggling or looseness. This is the result of high-quality German engineering.
The shave that Merkur 25C delivers is pretty close, but you should handle it with care, especially in tricky areas such as under the nose and behind the ears. Despite its open comb design, this double edge razor causes very little irritation.
- Outstanding design and quality
- Delivers close and efficient shave
- Suitable for men’s stubble and women’s legs alike
- The lather passes between the comb’s teeth without clogging the shaving head
- Users have reported issues with the tightening screw after two years of heavy use
- Some wet shavers have experienced serious skin irritation after shaving with 25C
2. Merkur 15C
Merkur 15C is 3.24 inches long and weighs 1.87 oz. The handle is 3.01 inches long and, like many other Merkur models, is properly knurled for a safe and secure grip. Its traditional length means that it will fit well in a large hand. At the same time, small-handed users will not be perplexed by the handle’s size.
The open comb design presupposes some close and efficient shave that makes 15C very suitable for wet shavers with tough and resilient beards. The shaving plate sort of lines up your longer stubble for a closer and cleaner cut.
The lighter handle means that this three-piece razor is head-heavy. When you shave with 15C, don’t press down like you’d do with a single edge razor. Instead, you should gently guide the head along the contours of your face and let it do the shaving. The result will be a baby-like face, smooth and fresh.
To change blades, carefully twist off the shaving plate with a towel. Then, remove the used piece and place it into a special plastic container. When you put in a new shaving blade, screw the head back until it shows evenly on both sides.
Be careful not to over-tighten the screw, or it may break. The most popular blades to use with this open comb razor are Derby, Feather, and Personna. It will give you a close and efficient shave, however, users have said that it isn’t very gentle to sensitive skin.
- The build quality is excellent
- Ideal diameter and length of the handle
- The handle also has got serious tool-quality knurling
- Users have found this safety razor to be less effective than Edwin Jagger DE89
- Head does not fully cover the razor blade
- Some users say this razor feels quite thin in the hand
Muhler R41 is one of the best safety razors out there. There isn’t a single detail of this open comb shaving tool without at least one special feature. Let’s have a look at the handle. The basic and most common version has got a classic chrome handle.
The models featuring a rose-gold metal, faux tortoiseshell, and black chrome handles are a bit pricier. All handles boast some serious knurling for a safer and a more confident grip and are 3.1 inches long. This seems to be the perfect handle length for all hand sizes.
This three-piece open comb safety razor works well with all standard double edge blades. The best performance is achieved with Muhle’s superior razor blades, but of course, you can use a brand of your choice.
Weighing in at 3.17 ounces, Muhler R41 is a heavyweight champion among the open comb safety razors. That said, you should be extra careful with this bad boy. It takes some excellent shaving technique and immaculate precision to control its hot temper. If you have it, then Muhle R41 will reward you with an exceptionally-close shave with minimum irritation.
For the best results, you should keep the skin pulled tautly and draw the blade across without any extra pressure. The open comb design is so effective that one pass with the grain is all it takes to get a baby-smooth face!
- Three different designs of the handle
- Built to last a lifetime
- Perfect handle length
- Delivers insanely close shave with just a single pass
- Very aggressive
- You must be extra careful when changing the blades
- Some users caution that handle gets slippery when wet
For an open comb safety razor, Parker 24C is only mildly aggressive, which makes it suitable for beginners and experienced wet shavers alike. The handle is about four inches long, which means you have to give yourself some time to get used to it, especially if switching from a shorter-handled closed comb razor.
Weighing in at 3.4 ounces, the Parker 24C safety razor is heavier than the Muhler R41. Most of the weight is in the handle that has got a solid brass frame. For a budget open comb razor, the design is pretty good and its performance is quite decent.
Users have also praised the gritty feel that the handle creates in the hand. It spells stability and perfect control, and these two are important prerequisites for a perfect shave. Because there isn’t too much space between the plate and the safety bar, the aggression level of Parker 24C is pretty much tamed.
This also means that Parker 24 C is going to have tough time plowing through some especially rough stubble. Users have also complained that this razor’s head holds some water inside. This is annoying, as water has to be removed after every use, or else the blade starts getting rusty.
- The solid brass frame guarantees life-long durability
- The handle’s knurling guarantees a secure grip
- Excellent value for your money
- Over time, the threads that hold the head onto the handle may start to corrode
- Some users find this razor’s head profile too tall and the blade angle – too wide
- Users have also noted that one of the edges tends to be more aggressive than the other
In terms of design, Parker 26C appears to be a slight upgrade of the 24C open comb safety razor. It arrives nicely packed and accompanied by five of Parker’s premium double edge blades. By the way, this is the only model on our list to sell with spare blades.
This three-piece safety razor has got a black anodized handle that is about four inches long. The genuine brass frame makes the 26C a bit handle-heavy. Weighing in at 3.4 ounces, Parker 26C is a really solid open comb safety razor.
On the whole, Parker’s 26C open comb razor features some decent engineering for its average price tag. However, reviewers have shared that the chrome finish may start to fade after just a short use. More importantly, its threaded top is prone to corrosion.
And while many users praise the feel in creates in the hand, they also share that the blades included in the startup package aren’t of the finest quality. On the aggression scale, Parker 26C scores 7 out of ten. Due to the good balance between the weight and handle length, this open comb razor always delivers a close and smooth shave.
- Good value for your money
- The heavyweight design creates a feeling of stability and durability in the user
- Arrives with five spare blades
- The blades aren’t of the finest quality
- The chrome finish may fade over time
- The threaded top is prone to corrosion
If you are looking for a more efficient and aggressive shave for a coarse beard then open comb razors aren’t the only upgrade to try. The slant razor is a rare and unusual modification of the safety razor.
The slanted head of these razors exposes more of the blade at one end and makes them very similar to the cutting angle of the classic straight razor. This makes slant razors perfect for shaving some seriously rough stubble. Read more about slant razors here.
The Merkur 37c HD slant safety razor is the predecessor of the Merkur 39c slant bar safety razor. The main difference between the two is that 39C’s handle is a bit longer. This three-piece chrome-finished safety razor has got a unique design that makes it a thing of beauty.
The 37C safety razor weighs in at 2.4 ounces and has got a three-inch-long handle. The balance point is approximately 1.5 inches up the handle. It feels quite reassuring in your hand, so you’ll find it very easy to switch from shaving with the grain to shaving across the grain, and then against the grain.
As a rule, shorter open comb safety razors are a lot easier to maneuver because the handle doesn’t get in the way as you are switching between shaving directions.
The handle of Merkur 37C has got some decent knurling: a 1-inch section is fully textured metal. The butt end sticks out about 3 mm from the knurled section. The handle’s knob has got some vertical grooves that do a great job reminding the user where it ends.
Many big-pawed guys write they wish 37C’s handle was a bit longer for an even better and more secure grip. Because of the slanted shaving plate, 37C is a rather hot-tempered safety razor. Once you get the knack of handling it, you’ll be amazed by its incredible shaving efficiency.
The stubble that other razors generally need two passes to eliminate will be gone after just one pass with MK 37C. In some reviews out there, you can read that 37C makes dull blades seem sharp because of its slant. We strongly recommend that you use this safety razor, or any other safety razor for that matter, only with sharp blades. The slanted angle of the shaving head just helps the sharp blade do a better job.
- Beautifully designed and made of high-quality materials
- Durable and easy to use
- Delivers a close and quick shave
- Threads must be oiled regularly to prevent corrosion
- Threads may start stripping if the shaving head is over-tightened
- Razor’s head must be dried after every shave to prevent rust
The best open comb razor, Merkur 25C, delivers a quick, close, and smooth shave. Being rather hot-tempered, open comb razors should be handled with great precision. When one’s learning to drive, don’t go for a Ferrari right away. Better learn the secrets of wet shaving with some closed comb model, and then pick one of the open comb razors discussed above.
Another thing to remember is that the vast majority of open comb safety razors are three-piece models. When unscrewing the shaving plate, always use a towel, as the double-edged blade protrudes a bit at both ends.
While looking for the best safety razor, watch out for comments mentioning corrosion. To prevent rust, dry your shaving tool properly after every shave and store it in a dry and cool place.
Should you have any questions or concerns regarding open comb razors, do not hesitate to reach out to us!