Razor Conspiracy

So I understand the whole concept of “give away the razors and sell the blades” but after a recent experiment/experience I am really starting to believe that high end razors/razor manufacturers build in a level of inferiority to their products and I would like others opinions.

To preface, I have always used the standard and fairly inexpensive “Twin Blade Metal” shavers from BIC or other brands which I get for under a buck each. I also generally use these way longer than they are probably supposed to be used, mainly because I forget to grab a new one not because I am cheap (although buying dollar razors may contradict that) :smiley:

In any event, so long as the wife does not shave her legs with my razors I can - literally - get weeks to a full month or more of shaves from a single dollar razor. Yes I notice that the blade becomes dull, but the experience, comfort and results from my month old dollar razor with 10-20 shaves on it is not intolerable. Now flash forward two weeks ago, when over the span of a few days I received not one but two different high end disposable razors in the mail. The first was a Mach 3 Turbo and the second a Fusion Proglide both with the cartridge system.

After using the the Mach 3 the first time, I was VERY impressed and thought maybe I have been missing out! However on my second and third use of this razor the experience degraded to the point where by the fourth shave pain ensued and the razor simply would not remove facial hair… an experience I have never had with the old dollar razor, they always successfully shave even after a month. Thinking perhaps this was just a bad anomaly, I tried the fusion which gave me the single best first shave ever! But alas by the third save was literally useless in doing its job despite any comfort issues.

So I ask, why would a 4 blade high end razor wear out exponentially faster than a cheapy twin blade? Do the high end razor companies create this fast expiration to keep the money flowing? And if so, why do the dollar razors work on average so much longer?

Three blade razors are far and away better razors than their two bladed brethren. I use three and get weeks of use from them. Gillette Sensor 3, ftr.

What makes a razor sharp is the thinness of the blade at the cutting surface. Thin blades are less durable than thick blades however and don’t keep an edge as long. I assume it would be more expensive to manufacture thin, sharp razors, so the cheap ones you buy are probably thicker and thus more durable.

I could echo your “Yes I notice that the blade becomes dull, but the experience, comfort and results from my month old dollar razor with 10-20 shaves on it is not intolerable.” but with “dollar razor” replaced with “three bladed sensor excel”.

I keep hearing those ads for the “dollar shave club” on the radio. I wonder if its any good.

I’m the same way. I’ve used the Mach 3 and Schick Quattro, and they work about equally well for me. I use the same blade for sometimes as long as two or more months. Maybe I just have particularly soft facial hair, but they last forever. I can’t get a disposable double or single blade to last more than maybe two weeks before I need to dump them. And the shave doesn’t feel as good and smooth to me.

I use the Gillette Fusion to shave my head (full head of hair) and some of my face ('stache/goatee) every day or so. I mark the package with a sharpie, and replace the cartridge after 15 shaves. There is just the slightest difference I can detect between first and fifteenth uses.

After each use I rinse well, shake off excess water, then dribble some alcohol on it.

I use a Gillette adjustable double edge safety razor. The blades cost pennies. They’re so cheap I don’t even consider how many shaves I get from each one. And yes, I can hear you from all the way back here in 1960.

I use a quality 4 blade, the Schick Quattro Titanium, but do get a good 20 to 30 clean shaves from it. I do though rinse it well and both shake and blot it dry after each use.

Alternately, you can use a hair dryer to keep the blades as dry as possible. I’ve used the same Pro-Glide blades for three months now using this method.

I would, but I’m shaving my head and I’m not buying a blow dryer just for that purpose.:smiley:

What kind of learning curve is there to using a safety razor?

Since stainless steel has become the material for razor blades, they have lasted far longer than most people believe.* The old carbon steel blades did wear out quickly and might last a week or so. Men got in the habit of changing their blades once a week. When the stainless steel blades came along, they kept the same habit; and newer material hasn’t changed that.

The razor companies don’t publicize this fact for obvious reasons.

Men should change blades when they feel uncomfortable; that can be several weeks.

*That was the basis of the “put your blade under a pyramid and you can use it twice as long” myth.

I use a beard. It’s awesome.

Doesn’t cryogenics have something to do with the cost and duration for these premium blades as well?

I use an old-fashioned safety razor with double-edged blades. You really don’t need more than one blade.

I use a Gillette Atra handle, which fits either Atra (double) or Sensor (triple) blades. The Sensor by far outperform and outlast the Atra blades. For some reason, though, no one around here carries Sensor blades, so most of the time I’m stuck with the two-blade version.

I use the Mack 3 and get as close a shave as with my straight razor.

Because people buy them.

I had the same experience as you. I use disposables (but no more Bics), and I’m in the fifth week of a Wilkinson disposable; I bought a package without checking the name. It’s the same colour as Gillette’s.

Not that it matters (except for Bic’s razors, which in my case feel like dull jackknives). Probably they’re all made at the same factory in China that also produces computers and umbrellas — on the same assembly line.

This is what I understand is the big issue. Razors aren’t blunted by your beard, but they are blunted by corrosion because people keep them wet.

Incidentally, the last time I bought razor blades, the sticker price was the usual ridiculous amount, but when I scanned my CVS rewards card, the price dropped almost $15 – to something reasonable. The best CVS card discount I’ve ever gotten.


This is the key to increasing the life of your razor blade. Clean it and dry it very well. Don’t store it wet.