When it comes to achieving a perfect shave, there’s no tool better than a straight razor. First manufactured in 1680, straight razors are often associated with high-end male grooming practices, as they give the user much greater control over the razor. This allows for a close, precise shave every time.
There are many benefits associated with using a straight razor when shaving, especially when it comes to precision. After all, the design of a straight razor allows for the blade to get as close as possible to the skin, allowing for a smoother, closer shave than other forms of razors. This can also reduce the skin irritation commonly associated with shaving, eliminating any discomfort you may face.
Studies have also found that maintaining a clean-shaven face (aided by the use of a straight razor) can leave you with healthy, glowing skin. This is because the process of shaving also removes dead skin cells.
When shaving regularly, straight razors can also be more cost-effective than disposable razors. This is because they are built with longevity in mind and do not need to be replaced after a few uses. This is also great news for environmentally-conscious shoppers, especially when you consider that an estimated 2 billion razors are thrown away each year.
The Very Best Straight Razors on the Market
When shopping for the top straight razors on the market, there are various different factors that you must consider. This includes:
Blade Material - Straight razors are typically made from some kind of steel. This could include stainless steel, carbon steel, or Damascus steel.
Handle Design - There are a variety of different handle designs to choose from based on aesthetics or grip support.
Durability - The durability of the razor should also be taken into consideration, which means you need to familiarize yourself with ways to properly care for the razor.
Price Range - Straight razors are available at a variety of prices, meaning you’re sure to find a product within your budget. However, it’s also important that you consider them to be a long-term investment.
The very best doesn't always mean the most expensive. For example, for new straight razor shavers we recommend Naked Armor and Dovo and for the more experienced shaver we like Thiers Issard. Taking those aspects in mind, some of our most popular straight razors include:
If your budget allows, the Thiers Issard Spartacus Razor is truly something to behold. This razor features a thin, round-point carbon steel blade that allows for a flawless shave every time. The handle is made from plastic composite scales and features a simple yet sleek moon design.
Best Razor Above Average Price:
The Dovo Bismarck Steel Straight Razor is another excellent choice. Here, however, the main selling point of the razor is its elegant design, elevated by the hand-crafted ebony wood handle. This razor also features a carbon steel blade.
Best Razor Average Price:
The Naked Armor Solomon Straight Razor is a budget-friendly alternative to the products listed above, though expert craftsmanship is still evident within its construction. This classic straight razor features a Japanese steel blade and a biblical brown algum wood handle.
Material Matters - Blade and Handle
The choice of materials used for both the blade and handle of a straight razor has an impact on the product's performance, maintenance, and longevity.
Carbon Steel - Carbon Steel is an excellent choice for razor blades due to the fact that it's wear-resistant. This means that the blades remain sharp, even after daily use, provided they are cared for properly.
Stainless Steel - Much like carbon steel, stainless steel is used in the construction of razors due to the fact that it remains sharp for a long time, reducing the chances of the user shaving with a dull blade.
Wooden Handles - Many users find that wooden handles offer superior grip support, which always comes in handy when shaving. However, they’re also favored for their aesthetics, depending on the choice of wood used.
Horn Handles - Horn is an excellent choice for handle material, due to the fact that it's lightweight and durable. However, it is also rather unique in appearance.
Acrylic Handles - Acrylic handles are known for their durability, as they are resistant to corrosion and water damage. They also offer excellent grip support to the user.
Blade Width and Point Types
What is the significance of blade width?
When shopping for straight razors, you’ll likely hear the term “blade width” referenced quite frequently. This refers to the width of the blade from its spine (the smooth edge) to the blade edge. The thinner a blade is, the ‘sharper’ or more aggressive the shave will be as a result. For this reason, wider blades are often recommended for beginners who are using straight razors for the first time.
What is the significance of the blade points?
Blade points refer to the shape of the edge of the tip of the razor, and you can typically choose between round-point or square-point blades. Round-point blades, as suggested, have a slightly rounded edge, which means they’re well-suited for beginners. Square-point blades are sharper, and therefore require a little more skill and precision.
Maintenance and Care
Straight razors are designed to stand the test of time. However, proper maintenance can extend their lifespan and keep them in good working order. To care for your straight razor, you should:
Clean the razor after each use with warm water, removing any trace of hair and shaving cream or foam.
Dry the razor after each use to prevent moisture build-up.
Store the razor in a cool, dry place.
You should also learn to sharpen your razor through honing and stropping. Honing is the process of using a sharpening stone to sharpen the edge of a blade that has begun to dull. Stropping also sharpens the blade, though this time through the use of a strip of material (a strop).
Learning Curve - Getting Started with Straight Razors
If you are using a straight razor for the first time, you’ll soon find the experience is very different from that of using a disposable razor. However, with practice, you’ll become a pro in no time.
Wash your face with warm water in order to soften the hair follicles and allow for a smoother shave.
Apply your choice of shaving cream.
Hold the razor at the correct angle (a 30-degree angle against the cheek).
Pull the skin taut, and use short, precise strokes to remove the hair from your face.
Rinse your face with cold water after you’ve finished shaving.
However, there are plenty of tutorials to follow online if you need visual guidance. Alternatively, you could enroll in a shaving course at a local barber shop. This way, you can develop the right technique and skills to achieve your desired shave.
There’s a reason why straight razors continued to be used throughout the world— hundreds of years after they were first introduced into the market. Timeless and effective, they allow for a smooth, close shave every time. Furthermore, they’re also sleek and stylish in their design and available in a wide range of colors and styles - meaning you’re sure to find a product you love.
Now is the perfect time to switch from disposable razors to straight razors. Not only will this allow you to elevate your shaving game, but you can enjoy a single product for years to come. As a result, this means you can wave goodbye to razors that break after a few uses or those that leave you with a patchy, uneven shave—and hello to shaving excellence.
This is also a great way to reduce your environmental impact, as you’re no longer contributing to the endless stream of disposable razors being sent to landfills throughout the country. Instead, you’re investing in a product that you can continue to use for years to come. Not only that, but you’re also guaranteeing yourself better results.
Our straight razors also receive consistently positive reviews from seasoned shavers and beginners alike, as evidenced below:
“In short, my razor is perfect. There is not a single point where it was not immaculately finished. The blade is stunningly sharp and precise- and has remained so for the last two months of use with stropping. I am confident this razor will outlast me.”
“I'm getting perfect close shaves without any cuts every time.”
“The Erec looks so unique; there aren't any straight razors I've come across with scales quite like this one. It was sharp out of the box and well oiled.”
“Nearly a month ago I gifted myself the King Arthur shave kit. The razor is a work of art, a thing of beauty, and a pleasure to shave with. The balance is superb making it easy to get the edge in the proper position to shave.”
If you’d like to find out more, please do not hesitate to get in touch today or take a deep dive and see our Straight Razor Guide.
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