Journal

Update: switching to an ‘old-style’ safety razor.

A while back I wrote about my experiment swapping over to an old style safety razor in an attempt to decrease the plastic waste from my disposable razor cartridges.

Here is my report back on the experience thus far.

It feels a little different

The first thing to note is that using a safety razor feels, well….different and requires a slightly different shaving technique.

My new metal safety razor is noticeably heavier than its lightweight plastic predecessor. Additionally, not having a pivoting head the safety razor requires a certain attention to detail to keep the head angle in the shaving sweet-spot.

It sounds silly but the years of accumulated shaving muscle memory that allowed me to quickly shave face and head on autopilot whilst singing and moonwalking in the shower (all done in 60 seconds, usually with only minimal blood loss) had to be abandoned for risk of a macerating blood bath. The safety razor has demanded I slow down a little and pay attention. At least until I learn the ways of its Wilkinson Sword blade.

The blade is SHARP as frick!

Advertising is so BS. Forget all that triple-bladed or quadruple-bladed disposable razor hype. One blade is plenty when it is as sharp as frick. And you really can sense the sharpness of the safety blade as you shave.

I found the shave to be really close and smooth which surprised me. The only negative is that it seems to be a little less conforming to the curvature of my head… meaning it takes more strokes to cover the same ground as my disposable. But with respect to shaving my face I would say the safety razor gives a better shave than my old disposable.

Shaving my legs for the ladies.

I considered shaving my legs so that I could give some useful feedback to the females (and others who prefer to have smooth pegs), but Kelly told me I would be crossing her maximum weirdness threshold. And there would undoubtedly be consequences. She let the word consequences hang in the air for dramatic effect…..
Oh well. I enjoy the opposite of “undoubtable consequence” a little too much, so you will have to conduct your own leg shaving experiment.

Rediscovering the sound of a shave.

Did you know shaving has a sound? Well it does. And with those plastic disposables you have probably forgotten it.

But switch over to a safety razor and you will instantly remember the sound from way back when you used to watch your dad or grandfather shaving (or perhaps even your mum). Its a pleasantly satisfying Scrrrrrrr Scrrrrrrr Scrrrrrrrr. A sharp friction sound that, for whatever reason, I just didn’t get with my disposable.

Combine this with the relative weight of the safety razor giving the impression that you are actually using a tool, an instrument, rather than a bit of cheap plastic… and the swishing in the water and the tap tap tap of the razor on the edge of the sink to clear the shaving cream (it’s all coming back to you now isn’t it?), and you will rediscover the craft of shaving way down on the autonomous sensory meridian response end of the spectrum.

To complete the experience you can always ask your partner to buy you a shaving mug and brush for Christmas. Gift idea solved.

In summary…just do it.

So in short. The experiment has been a success for me. And I have now joined the masses who sing the virtues both environmental and experiential of using a safety razor.

If you haven’t already made the switch, I recommend you give it a trial and see for yourself. My rating:

1 comment on “Update: switching to an ‘old-style’ safety razor.

  1. OMG Ian, you’ve taken me back to the 60’s, remembering the sound of my dad shaving, and watching him lathering up with the brush and mug (before shaving cream in cans). You have also reminded me of the bloodbath (literally) of sneaking that same safety razor when a teenager in the 70’s to shave my legs. Imagine having to wear long pants in summer in QLD to cover the scars…..not so great.

    Like

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