A safe, close shave, a clean beard – that’s what bearded inventor William S. Henson thought about in 1847 when he patented the first safety razor, otherwise known as the safety razor. Since this first razor, many improvements have been made, but the principle has not changed: sharpness! A good safety razor is chosen with care and thoroughness. These are mainly used to get rid of hair, whether on the face or elsewhere. The problem faced by various consumers is how to make the right razor choice. This review has been written to help you learn how to make the right choice of the best safety razors.
The Best Safety Razors
Merkur 34C Heavy-Duty
Appreciated as much by beginners in the field as by those used to safety razors, this model is distinguished by its very short handle for top ergonomics. Its closed comb ensures a very smooth shave.
Simple to use thanks to its two-piece construction and ergonomic due to its balanced weight, it ensures a smooth and precise shave. Thus, it is suitable for regular use, both for novices and for more experienced users. In addition, its closed comb limits the exposure of the skin to the blades. If its rather short handle may surprise during the first uses, it turns out to be pleasant to handle in the end. And, of course, its slightly retro aesthetic side, as well as its build quality, also have everything to please. The Merkur 34C had already found its place in our selection of the best manual razors for men.
This two-piece razor with a closed comb stands out as a solution that is both simple and effective. Ideal for a smooth shave, it appeals to both beginners and more experienced users. If its short handle may be surprising at first glance, it actually seduces with its maneuverability and good balance. It is also appreciated for its aesthetics and its build quality. In short, it offers a very convincing quality/price ratio.
Merkur is a hyper renowned brand in the industry: it offers a wide range of quality safety razors, among which the 34C is particularly successful.
This is a two-piece razor, which means that it is separable in half for changing the blade. In practice, it suffices to unscrew the razor at the base in order to be able to remove and insert the new blade. The operation is considered really simple by the users.
The razor head has a closed comb: the blade is a little exposed, so the shaving is rather gentle, making it an ideal solution for beginners, sensitive skin or simply a very regular shave. Keep in mind that the movements made with this type of model must be very gentle: if you press too hard on the skin, you risk cutting yourself.
That said, users are impressed with the smooth and precise shave provided by this model. And, while the razor handle may seem surprisingly short, it turns out to be easy to handle and perfectly balanced. In addition, its gripped handle ensures a secure grip.
Finally, it’s hard to ignore the sleek design of the all chrome coated razor. While many emphasize a good build quality, others seem to notice a slight drop in quality, especially in the coating which tends to flake.
Despite this, Merkur products impress with their very convincing price/performance ratio.
Wilkinson Classic Double Edge
If it presents a lower material quality, however, it remains a convincing solution for beginners wishing to initiate themselves into the world of traditional shaving. Its butterfly design makes changing the blade very easy.
If you are just starting out and want to test a low-cost model to get started on the safety razor adventure, this model from the famous Wilkinson brand will undoubtedly do the trick. Simple and well balanced, it is effective for gently shaving the beard. Its butterfly opening also makes it really quick and practical to use. In addition, we appreciate that it comes with 10 spare blades. In short, if it is rather basic, it amply justifies its quality/price ratio.
From the famous brand specializing in shaving, this classic safety razor has a butterfly opening making changing the blade ultra-fast and easy. With its closed comb and blade pack included, it is ideal for beginners. Without being the most qualitative razor in our comparison, it appeals to a large audience with its convincing quality/price ratio.
The Wilkinson Classic Double Edge is distinguished first of all by its butterfly opening, which greatly facilitates blade change. Indeed, the head simply opens in two (while remaining integral with the rest of the razor), thus exposing the blade and allowing a replacement in two stages of three movements.
If this system is considered practical and comfortable, some believe that the blade may, in some cases, not be as well fixed as with a screw system. Others appreciate the latter for the very thorough cleaning it allows once the razor is disassembled. That said, maintaining the Wilkinson doesn’t seem to be a problem for users.
It features a closed comb, which is therefore ideal for a smooth and safe shave. Suddenly, it is a solution particularly appreciated by beginners. It is true that the closed comb, coupled with a butterfly opening and a very attractive price makes it a really accessible option.
While some users find the material quality of the razor a bit low-end, others say they are satisfied with its robustness and balance. All in all, it’s pretty decent value for money. Made of stainless steel with a chrome finish, it has a non-slip handle that is pleasant to handle.
The little extra? It is sold directly with a pack of 10 Wilkinson blades!
Merkur Progress 510
This 2-piece razor has 5 levels of adjustment allowing you to adjust the degree of exposure of the skin to the blade for a tailor-made shave. Its pleasant handling and its quality of manufacture are appreciable.
This model is distinguished by its rotating ring allowing the opening of the head to be adjusted on several levels, thus adjusting the exposure and the angle of the blade for a more or less aggressive shave. It is therefore a model that we particularly recommend to those of you looking for modularity, sometimes shaving a beard for a week, sometimes a light veil on a daily basis. Appreciated for its ergonomics, it also enjoys a good quality of manufacture.
This two-piece razor has the advantage of being adjustable: you can adjust the degree of exposure of your skin to the blade according to your needs and preferences. With its handle longer than its mid-range compare, it offers a secure and comfortable grip. In addition, it stands out for its superior material quality – unique to the brand.
While it features a classic two-piece design (only the top of the head needs to be unscrewed to change the blade), it is characterized by an adjustable head opening. Thus, you can adjust the distance between the blade and the comb to ensure a more or less aggressive shave.
In practice, you can choose between five levels of adjustment. To change the settings, all you need to do is activate the ivory rotating ring located at the lower end of the handle. It is a particularly practical solution for men with several types of shaving needs.
In addition to a tailor-made shave, the Progress offers a comfortable grip. It has a longer handle than the 34C and is distinguished by a nice balance for safe handling. Made of zinc and coated with chrome, it enjoys a beautiful build quality.
Finally, it is a model that is intended for men looking for modularity or, simply, are dissatisfied with the degree of blade exposure on other models of razors. It provides a very efficient, customizable shave, and is appreciated for its handy ring system.
With its open comb and 3-part design, it is intended for experienced users looking for an ultra-efficient close shave. It is particularly suitable for more occasional use.
If its 3-part design makes changing the blades a little more complicated, it is above all its open comb format that sets this model apart from the rest of our selection. With more direct exposure to the blade, it provides a more aggressive shave, making it particularly suitable for harder beards and less regular use. While it is attractive for its efficiency and ergonomics, it should therefore be used with great care.
The only model with an open comb in our selection, the Mühle R41 is intended for experienced users looking for a more aggressive shave. It is, therefore, more suitable for occasional use and/or harder beards. Comfortable in the hand, it can be disassembled into three parts – which in our opinion remains a little less practical.
This razor is designed in three parts. In other words, when changing the blade, you need to unscrew the handle from the head, which itself separates into two separate pieces. Often, this is a system judged a little less practical by users, who have to juggle a higher number of parts in hand. That said, the operation remains obviously playable.
What makes this model special is its open comb that exposes the skin more directly to the blade. Suddenly, we get a very close shave as well as a particularly effective work on dense and hard beards.
Many users confirm that shaving is quite aggressive. For this reason, it is intended more for men experienced with this type of razor, and should really be used with care: be careful not to press on the face, let the razor do it! It is therefore not particularly recommended for beginners, sensitive skin or daily use.
Design level, we find the chrome finishes as well as a knurled handle that is easy and pleasant to handle. For a razor of this type, know that it is rather light. However, it keeps a nice balance and is easy to handle. Finally, it is of German manufacture.
How did we make our choice of good safety razors?
If the models of electric razors or even beard trimmers are flocking more and more to the market, the manual razor is not losing popularity. On the contrary, safety razors in particular – also known as safety razors – are increasingly coming to the fore.
Their main strengths? A traditional, hyper-efficient shave, a much lower ecological impact and a profitable investment in the long term.
Whether you’ve already tested one or more safety razor (s) or are new to it, it can be difficult to know which type of model to go for given the different designs and brands available on the market.
In order to be able to master this type of model with full knowledge of the facts, here are a few key elements to pay attention to:
- The design: there are several types of manufacturing, which influence the change of the blade. On the two-piece razor, the top of the head is detached from the handle by a system of screws, allowing the blade to be replaced quite easily. On the three-piece razor, the handle, the upper part and the lower part of the head are separable. The butterfly model has a head that simply opens in two, for a quick and easy change. However, some believe that the blade is likely to be less well maintained.
- The comb: on closed combs, the skin is less directly exposed to the blade, which ensures a smoother and safer shave. It is an ideal solution for beginners, sensitive skin or men who shave daily. A razor with an open comb, therefore, offers a more aggressive shave – because of more direct exposure to the blade. It is recommended for more experienced users, for a less regular shave or with harder and coarser beards. In some models, the degree of exposure of the blade is adjustable.
- The blades: if most of the blades offered today are double-edged, it is up to you to choose which type is best suited to your skin and your beard (in order to choose, for example, more or less sharp models). ). Normally, almost all SKUs should be suitable for your razor – since they meet a standard size. The blades have the advantage of being very often offered in generous lots at an attractive price.
- The Materials: Safety razors are typically made from durable materials. Usually, there are stainless steel models covered with chrome. Some brands also opt for bamboo. Many famous models are made in Solingen, the cradle of cutlery in Germany.
- Ergonomics: if you have the choice between longer or shorter sleeves (often measuring between 7 and 10 cm), the important thing is above all to opt for a model with good balance and therefore a safe and comfortable grip. Use a knurled grip, which is less likely to slip off your fingers – especially with wet hands. In any case, you may need a little getting used to it before you get the hang of it.
It is following long hours of online research on various specialized sites, the meticulous analysis of ten preselected models and the careful examination of numerous user feedback that we have pinned the 4 safety razors for you.
What types of safety razors are there?
Single-edged safety razor
Single-edged safety razor blades use a stiffer and thicker blade than their double-edged counterpart. It requires a different type of head, a different technique, and a different feel. The single-edged safety razor is held at a different angle than the double-edged safety razor. With the latter, you use the top cap to guide the shave, while with a single-edged safety razor, you start with your head flat on your face, then tilt your back slightly to find your angle. The blades single-edged are often quite specific to a certain razor, but they also last longer than a double-edged blade. According to several comparative tests and professional opinions, this type of razor has a better lifespan, but it is not democratized enough.
Double-edged safety razor
The double-edged safety razor uses the bending of the blade in the head to create an angle that allows the blade to cut through your facial hair . Angle, blade spacing, blade type, and even the geometry of the safety bar all play a role in ensuring a better shave. The blades of a double-edged safety razor are sharp, thin, of standard size, and come from a variety of brands. When shaving with a double-edged safety razor, the top cap helps guide the blade to the right angle as it glides over your skin. There are different degrees of aggression in the blades, the geometry of the razor, the weight and the design of the head. A wide variety of tests, comparisons and user reviews have confirmed that this type of razor is the most widely used around the world.
Closed comb safety razor
The closed comb or the safety bar refers to the bar that provides a layer of protection between the blade and your face. Most double-edged safety razors are closed-comb. Those new to wet shaving should definitely start with this type of razor as it offers the highest level of protection. Closed comb safety razors are also great for all levels of razors. It’s the best type of razor when you really care about safety and protection, several comparison tests have suggested.
Open comb safety razor
The open comb safety razors have openings in the safety bar which allows a larger portion of the razor blade being exposed to the skin. This creates a more aggressive shaving experience than that of a closed-comb safety razor, meaning that shaving will remove your hair faster . But there is also a higher risk of cutting and injuring yourself. This could be a great solution if you have really thick hair or if you rarely shave. This type is strongly discouraged to those new to safety shaving for the damage it could cause, according to some tests and professional advice.
It depends on the model to buy. Some models do not offer blades with the razor. Others offer a few. Some other models, such as the Solimo, come with a reserve of 100 blades. This provides a shaving autonomy of almost a year, for a shaving rhythm twice a week.
The aggressiveness of a safety razor is its ability to shave deeply. The more aggressive it is, the deeper it shaves and leaves no hair behind, and the shorter your shaving session. The less aggressive the razor, the more you have to shave a second time, or even more. Aggression goes hand in hand with comfort. The more aggressive a razor, the less comfortable it is, and vice versa.
What Is The Best Choice Between A Safety Razor With A Smooth Handle And One With A Less Smooth Handle?
It is always better to choose a razor with a rough handle, less smooth. A smooth handle may slip out of your hands when shaving and cause cuts, while a gruff handle fits properly and firmly in the handle, providing a safe shave.
Just turn the safety bar counterclockwise while holding the handle firmly. Be careful when opening a razor loaded with a blade.