Real, traditional, double edged shaving is brilliant for geekiness. The four elements of razor, blade, brush and soap/cream. All available in myriad forms and with the infinite capacity to mix and match. Regular readers will probably be familiar with Merkur, Edwin Jagger, Parker, Lord, Weishi and vintage Gillette razors. Today I thought I would cover some of the more exotic razors that form part of this rich tapestry. So now lets delve a little deeper into what is out there.
The Merkur Vision is about £80. It is an adjustable TTO (twist to open butterfly head) that looks like nothing else on earth. It is an amazing piece of German engineering. But they didn’t get it right, the early ones had sloppy mechanisms so it had a redesign in 2000. This is a real Marmite razor some love it and some hate it, there seems to be no middle path.
Feather in Japan are famous for their incredibly sharp blades. They also make razors and recently introduced their excitingly named All Stainless. This is a money no object piece of precision Japanese engineering and it is fabulous and is very highly rated. But it costs $160.
The Germans are not to be outdone in the stainless steel department. So we have Pils and their creatively named 101. Machined from solid blocks of the stuff to a fastidious level of precision these are made in small numbers and retail at 175 Euros.
Now to America and some interesting artisan razors. Bob’s Razor works makes all sorts of low volume, hand crafted shaving stuff at reasonable prices. His famous razor is based on an old Gillette model with a heavy hand turned handle. It is called the Bull Mastiff and the handle is $45 and the head $25. These are only made in very small quantities and are very highly rated. Absolutely gorgeous kit.
So next to Thailand and ikon, they made a small batch of razors machined from solid stainless steel last year which were extremely aggressive. This year they have made another batch with the choice of two different heads and two different handle lengths and which are far less demanding of the user. They only wants $65 for these which is pretty good value.
Finally we go to New Zealand and the Goodfella razor which is $71 and has the interesting option of a black chrome head. Once again a real high quality product.
As you can see there is plenty of variety to be had from many different places around the globe. These top end razors may be expensive compared to a standard Merkur model or a vintage Gillette, but they are all beautifully made objects of desire.