In these days of escalating razor blade counts and subscription shaving companies, the allure of the old-fashioned safety razor has never looked better. Cheaper, simpler, and with the feeling of an American classic, you can get still get a remarkably close cut with technology that’s been around for decades. The safety razor’s strength lies in its in its simplicity: The reusable handle and head feature few moving parts, while the disposable blades slide in and out easily while costing pennies each, ensuring that you always have the best shave.
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How you style your facial hair is a personal choice, says Genevieve Bochanty the director of brand experience at the Art of Shaving. “There’s a freedom that didn’t exist of every different kind of style. Every style is accepted. It’s all over the place.”
If you’ve tried cartridge systems, you’ll be amazed with how despite small variations, all use the same blades and therefore give comparable, quality shaves. Still, there are differences, and our list can act as a guide for which safety razor is right for you.
The name pretty much says it all. This safety razor has an adjustable dual head with multiple aggression micro-settings, great for both normal and sensitive skin. It's literally the most badass thing out there.
Pros: Look at this safety razor. Just look. It’s gorgeous. It’s rugged. It’s stunning. The handle is a thing of wonder. And it has this cool feature that helps you avoid misalignment, and uneven cuts.
Cons: The copper finish looks good, but this razor is on the heavier side.
The hallmark of safety razors is a fixed head. But for those to whom this seems alien, we suggest the OneBlade CORE, which features the most beginner-friendly features. Beyond that, it also comes in a sexy, modern package.
Pros: We can talk about the lightweight, medium-length handle, but this safety razor has so many distinguishing features that we should zoom toward them. First, the razor is strengthen by a steel rod running through its length, adding control that we appreciated. But the biggest design detail we loved was its pivoting head, which brings in modern design of multi-blade razors with the affordability of the safety razor. The end result is a closer shave sooner if you’re new to this heritage style.
Cons: Customers were mixed on the pivoting head. Some raved, saying its performance was akin to their favorite modern option. Others were underwhelmed, saying that the extra money wasn’t worth a nominally better shave. The bottom line is that every face is different, so your results may vary.
The Bevel safety razor is a work of art. It goes you a close shave by cutting cleanly at skin level, with no tugging, yanking, or pulling. And it is compatible with all standard double-edge razor blades.
Pros: You can use this safety razor to shave everywhere you need, not just your face. It has a four-inch handle, a matte textured handle grip, a solid brass handle, and weighs just over three ounces. Its single blade can help reduce irritation and bumps.
Cons: It’s still too heavy and burdensome for some naysayers.
The Amazon customer-favorite safety razor by Weishi is a great place to start for beginners and for those who also plan on shaving hard-to-reach places like the back of the neck. This long-handled safety razor is also great for shower grooming and in other high-moisture locations.
Pros: Long-handled bodies have always been preferred for their reach, allowing you to adequately stretch for areas farther than your face. The butterfly-head design makes hands-free disposal of old blades super easy with a simple twist of the base. And about the handle: Its nubbed design is super secure even in the shower. It also includes five blades to get you on your way. As a secondary use, many women love it for legs.
Cons: “I don’t see a need to spend any more, since for me, this razor checked all the boxes I cared about,” wrote one satisfied Amazon customer. Every customer was satisfied, and so were we. To date, this handle has accrued more than 1,500 positive reviews, and we don’t have anything to complain about. With its affordability, that’s saying a lot.
Germany is world-renown for its mechanical engineering, so it’s no surprise that MERKUR is a favorite among safety razor aficionados. Its safety razor epitomizes the company, thoroughly explaining why it’s the world’s best-selling safety razor brand.
Pros: This long-handled safety razor has a textured shaft for wet-or-dry security while shaving. But it’s also a nimble unit, weighing in at a mere two ounces. We especially like the three-piece design, which quickly disassembles for thorough cleanings between uses.
Cons: While light sounds best, many longtime safety razor users prefer the heft of a heavy base, as it can allow for a smoother glide (something that, when taking the suggested multiple passes, is easier on the skin). For that reason, once you get the hang of it, you may wish you went with some weight.
Like your favorite Scotch tumbler, we love the ornate shape of the VIKINGS BLADE the Chieftain. But beyond its silhouette, there’s a lot to love about this safety razor.
Pros: Short-shafted razors like the Chieftain are great because of their precision. Think of it like this: Do you have more control with a five-inch pen or a five-foot pen? Beyond its 3.75-inch length, we also really liked its weighted feel, which tips the scales at around six ounces. The included leatherette case and pack of Swedish steel blades were also nice.
Cons: As mentioned, short-bodied safety razors are more precise, but they make hard-to-reach places harder to reach. If your face isn’t the only thing you shave, you should be looking elsewhere.
On par with the German maker on this list, safety razor fans have loved the English-made Edwin Jagger for decades. Beyond its quality, however, we were most impressed with the range of options available, making it the most customizable brand on this list.
Pros: Short handle or long handle and with a myriad of colors available, this safety razor looks as great as it performs—and it performs great. Its medium-aggressive head is easy for beginners and close enough for veterans.
Cons: While many customers end up happy, we should note that the handle itself is smooth, and unsurprisingly, some complained about its slipperiness when wet. If you’re looking for a razor to follow you in and out of the shower, we’re hesitant to recommend this one.
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