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An appeal to the shaving gods....

Looking for your valuable input. 

After years of shaving my head with Headblade products, I am somewhat tired of the plastic and rubber pieces wearing out and would instead like to try my hand at my first safety razor. Willing to spend up to about $200. 

I am looking for a quality piece and something not so aggressive that I’ll slice myself to ribbons, leading me to believe something adjustable like a Merkur Futur might do me well. 

If anyone (looking at you @SGH) is willing to recommend specific models I should consider, I would be very grateful!
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Comments

  • jimdgreat1jimdgreat1 Posts: 142
    Mach 3? Been shaving my head for almost 20 years. It's the best I've found.

    I know, it's not as cool as a straight edge.

    XLBGE - LBGE - Charbroil gasgrill

    Wichita Kansas

  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    edited September 2
    @Great_EGGspectations
    If you are wanting to go with a DE razor, especially for head shaving, you will be hard pressed to do any better than a Merkur Futur or Parker Variant. Both are outstanding performers and the quality is top notch. 
    The beauty of these two razors is you have absolute control over their aggressiveness. You can dial them up or down with a mere turn of a knob. Also simply changing blades has a huge impact on their aggressiveness. And you also have the option of shimming them for even more aggression if you so desire. 
    A Merkur Futur set on high, loaded with a Feather blade, and shimmed two times is right on par with the legendary Muhle R41 for aggressiveness. On that same note, a Merkur Futur set on low, loaded with a mild blade and not shimmed is just about as mild as most disposable safety razors. Everything that I just said applies to the Parker Variant as well with one exception. It’s slightly less aggressive than the Futur when both are shimmed twice. But only by a hair. No pun intended. 
    In my humble opinion, if someone is wanting to get by with just one razor, you will be hard pressed to do any better than the Futur and the Variant. Especially for the money. You can certainly argue and build the case that the R41 (and a few others) can surpass the Futur and Variant in some categories. However even the R41 is not as flexible or as forgiving as the Futur and the Variant. For all around shaving, both of these razors best the R41. Because of their adjustability, anyone can pick them up and use them safely and with confidence. This is simply not the case with the R41. It is simply to aggressive for inexperienced users and it’s open comb design makes it a disaster waiting to happen. 
    Several folks on this forum has called, texted or PM’d me after purchasing either the Variant or the Futur. The most common response is “I wish I would of bought it years ago”. 
    Before I stop my rant, let me recommend one more thing. If you chose to go with a DE razor, invest in a good soap or cream. You really can’t use a DE razor to it’s full potential with canned cream. A shaving soap or real cream with provide far more slickness and cushion for a much better shave. It’s like putting regular gasoline in a top fuel dragster. It may crank and go, but it’s performance will be restricted. The same applies to a DE razor. 
    Whatever you chose, good luck and shave on my friend. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    Here is a couple of examples of quality shaving creams if you chose to stay with a cream for simplicity. The first two creams must be lathered with a brush. This can be done in a bowl or on the face. 

    Here is a latherless cream (no brush required). Simply wipe it on. 

    Any of these will provide the protection and comfort that you are looking for when using a DE. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    One last thing. Be advised that the Futur is a very large razor. This can be either a good or bad thing. If you have small hands and a small face with odd or sharp angles, the Futur may not be for you. The Variant will serve you better as it is slightly smaller. 
    Here is a size comparison of the Futur upside the R41. The size difference is easily noticeable. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • Mach 3? Been shaving my head for almost 20 years. It's the best I've found.

    I know, it's not as cool as a straight edge.

    Thanks for the suggestion. I previously used a Mach 3 and also a Schick Quattro. They did the job, but the blades dulled quickly and I found that the width of the multi-blade design made it harder to do the contours. Surprisingly, I found the Mach 3 blades finicky and preferred similar knockoffs. 
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 13,308
    edited September 2
    I don't shave my head, but if I did, I can't imagine using anything but a Mach 3 or similar cartridge razor. Not a snowball's chance of letting a DE razor anywhere near!

    You could always let Sweeney Todd have a go at it. =)
    Related image

    I hate it when I go to the kitchen for food and all I find are ingredients!

                                                                …Unknown

    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

  • GrateEggspectationsGrateEggspectations Posts: 2,100
    edited September 2
    @SGH: Thanks for the info, friend. I had a feeling the Futur would be a good choice, and you’ve confirmed it. Would it be crazy to consider an R41 for the head? I’ve read about others who have employed it with success, but given my lack of experience with DE razors, I wonder if the aggressive nature of it makes it a poor choice relative to the infinite adjustability of the Futur. When head shaving, you’re flying blind over uneven territory for more than half the shave, so it can be scary at times and you can certainly do some damage. 
  • 1voyager1voyager Posts: 412
    edited September 2
    @SGH - I haven't tried Taylor of Old Bond Street or the Captains Choice yet but I agree with you on the Cremo. I've been using Cremo with sandalwood scent.  It has a great earthy aroma and is crazy slick.
    Somewhere in Colorado
    LBGE, PGS A40 Gasser
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    @SGH: Thanks for the info, friend. I had a feeling the Futur would be a good choice, and you’ve confirmed it. Would it be crazy to consider an R41 for the head? I’ve read about others who have employed it with success, but given my lack of experience with DE razors, I wonder if the aggressive nature of it makes it a poor choice relative to the infinite adjustability of the Futur. When head shaving, you’re flying blind over uneven territory for more than half the shave, so it can be scary at times and you can certainly do some damage. 
    It’s no secret that I’m a diehard fan of the R41. In my opinion, once you master it there is nothing quite its equal. With that said, I’m a face shaver. I don’t know that I would want to unleash the R41 on my head. I would feel much more comfortable with a razor like the Futur or Variant that I could turn down if need be. 
    I have no doubt that there are head shavers out there that use the R41 for its closeness per pass. But I would be willing to bet they didn’t start with the R41. They worked their way up to it. 
    You said it yourself above that you are inexperienced. I can’t in good conscience recommend that you start with R41. The Futur or Variant will be more razor than you need if you set them on their highest setting. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • @SGH: Thanks for the info. Have you tried the Rockwell 6s or other adjustable DE razors? The Rockwell comes in stainless steel, which is nice. 
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    1voyager said:
    @SGH - I haven't tried Taylor of Old Bond Street or the Captains Choice yet but I agree with you on the Cremo. I've been using Cremo with sandalwood scent.  It has a great earthy aroma and is crazy slick.
    I use the Cremo two ways. One, as a preshave. I rub it on and then lather over it with a shaving soap. The other use is for building super or Uber lathers. I use it mixed with a good soap in a bowl to build the lather. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    @SGH: Thanks for the info. Have you tried the Rockwell 6s or other adjustable DE razors? The Rockwell comes in stainless steel, which is nice. 
    I have not personally tried them myself. However I have read a lot about it. It gets good reviews overall. I would not be hesitant to buy one if I decided that I wanted one. 
    But again, I haven’t used one so I can’t say anything good or bad about them. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • HubHub Posts: 699
    I recently joined the wet shaving movement and I started with a Parker Variant Adjustable.  I highly recommend it.  You can adjust it anywhere from a one to a ten.  I started at a one and have worked my way up to a three.  For head shaving you probably would do the same and most likely would max out at a three.
    Beautiful and lovely Villa Rica, Georgia
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    Hub said:
    I recently joined the wet shaving movement and I started with a Parker Variant Adjustable.  I highly recommend it.  You can adjust it anywhere from a one to a ten.  I started at a one and have worked my way up to a three.  For head shaving you probably would do the same and most likely would max out at a three.
    Glad to hear that you are enjoying the Variant.  

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • Thanks again for the input all. 

    I just put my order in for a Rockwell 6s. While many razors appealed, I appreciate that this one is all stainless steel and is also made in the U.S. (and designed in Canada). It gets very good reviews with consistent nods to excellent build quality and smoothness of the shave. It is “adjustable”, though not in the traditional sense - it comes with six plates that are interchangeable, allowing you to dial in your desired closeness. Rockwell has released a dial-based adjustable razor (Model T), but it doesn’t come in an all SS version. 

    Was about $150 CAD with taxes on Amazon, but I purchased directly from the manufacturer and used a promo code, bringing it down to $124 CAD all in. Can review after I receive it and get some shaves under my belt (not literally!) if there is any interest.


  • dannysdannys Posts: 37

    I previously used a Mach 3 and also a Schick Quattro. They did the job, but the blades dulled quickly and I found that the width of the multi-blade design made it harder to do the contours. Surprisingly, I found the Mach 3 blades finicky and preferred similar knockoffs. 
     I used the Mach 3 until Costco stopped carrying the blades. I figured the Fusion 5 would be as good. Boy was I wrong. With the F5, I have bad stubble by mid afternoon. It doesn't seem to get as close as the M3. As for blade duty length, the M3 lasted me a week which I thought was good. The F5 only lasts a few days.
  • MaskedMarvelMaskedMarvel Posts: 2,159
    I’m very happy with the shaver I use now - a heavy brass handle that disposable cartridges slide into,  with a good brush and soap mug - but am intrigued every time these posts crop up. 

    Wish the inital investment wasn’t so high...  I’d love to try it..
    Large BGE and Medium BGE
    36" Blackstone - Greensboro!


  • etherdomeetherdome Posts: 303
    I’m very happy with the shaver I use now - a heavy brass handle that disposable cartridges slide into,  with a good brush and soap mug - but am intrigued every time these posts crop up. 

    Wish the inital investment wasn’t so high...  I’d love to try it..
    Totally agree. I am so intrigued, yet I am content with a Quattro and canned cream. 
    Upstate SC
    Large BGE
  • EoinEoin Posts: 1,855
    I’m very happy with the shaver I use now - a heavy brass handle that disposable cartridges slide into,  with a good brush and soap mug - but am intrigued every time these posts crop up. 

    Wish the inital investment wasn’t so high...  I’d love to try it..
    What do those fancy multi blade cartridges cost? Shaving with a DE and blades is cheaper and the extra up front cost of a normal DE razor is not high.
  • MaskedMarvelMaskedMarvel Posts: 2,159
    Eoin said:
    I’m very happy with the shaver I use now - a heavy brass handle that disposable cartridges slide into,  with a good brush and soap mug - but am intrigued every time these posts crop up. 

    Wish the inital investment wasn’t so high...  I’d love to try it..
    What do those fancy multi blade cartridges cost? Shaving with a DE and blades is cheaper and the extra up front cost of a normal DE razor is not high.
    I get the cvs or grocery store brand with one or two blades and the white strip. They come 20 To a pack or something. Just a few bucks..
    Large BGE and Medium BGE
    36" Blackstone - Greensboro!


  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    etherdome said:
    I am so intrigued
    Jump in and try it my friend. Like most people who try it, it just may give you a whole new outlook on shaving. I use to hate to shave. I mean I hated it with a passion. I had just as soon be whipped rather than shave. It was that hatred that made me seek out something better.
    Once you get a quality DE and some good blades like Astra or Feather, you will never go back. Especially if you learn to make your own lather from a quality soap. 
    There is nothing wrong with using disposable razors and cream in a can. But there are far better options out there that can make shaving a real pleasure instead of a chore. You can compare it to cooking or anything really. Do we really need a Big Green Egg to turn out great food? No, we do not. We can do the same thing on a 20 dollar grill from the Dollar Store. However, the BGE sure does take a lot of the work out of it and makes the overall cooking experience enjoyable. The same can be said for DE shaving. A good razor, a good blade, a good brush and a quality soap will make your shaving experience a joy. 
    And for me, building a lather is a very relaxing ritual that I really enjoy. Most folks who use a DE agree that the lather building is what makes it so enjoyable. 
    Check out some of the peaks on these lathers and superlathers. If this don’t make you jump in, nothing will. 


    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • RedSkipRedSkip Posts: 1,329
    @sgh  Fantastic!  Looks like whipped cream or meringue - stiff peaks too.
    Large BGE - McDonald, PA
  • I’m very happy with the shaver I use now - a heavy brass handle that disposable cartridges slide into,  with a good brush and soap mug - but am intrigued every time these posts crop up. 

    Wish the inital investment wasn’t so high...  I’d love to try it..
    For something that you use almost daily (daily for both face and head, for me - a 15min minimum routine), I find it’s actually a very modest cost.

    If you take the example of my purchase, it’s a stainless steel (316L) piece with no mechanisms to go awry. $125 CAD seems like a downright bargain. And then there’s the decrease in blade costs over cartridges. 

    And if if you don’t like the razor you buy, I bet resale value is pretty good. 

    Not it trying to be a smart**s, btw. Maybe just rationalizing my purchase a little.  :)
  • lkapigianlkapigian Posts: 3,695
    Norelco works for me
    Visalia, Ca
  • ZaltydogZaltydog Posts: 106
    I have had my eye on the Rockwell 6S for awhile now and actually pulled the trigger earlier today. Have been using the Merkur 34C for years, but @SGH and his shaving passion resulted in me taking a closer look at the aggressiveness factor. I have also started using Creamo as a base layer prior to face lathering. That has worked out well.
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    Zaltydog said:
    I have had my eye on the Rockwell 6S for awhile now and actually pulled the trigger earlier today. Have been using the Merkur 34C for years, but @SGH and his shaving passion resulted in me taking a closer look at the aggressiveness factor. I have also started using Creamo as a base layer prior to face lathering. That has worked out well.
    Congrats, hope you enjoy the new razor. 
    I try to spread the word about using the Cremo as a preshave. It’s far cheaper than oil and does just as good if not better. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • etherdomeetherdome Posts: 303
    @SGH,  This may be an ignorant question but..... if I currently have a multi blade system like Mach 3 or Quattro and switch to one of these “nice” razors that only have a single blade, do I have to make several passes with the “nice razor to get a super close shave? I’m only asking because I watched a video of a guy reviewing the Parker variant who basically shaved 3 times in one shaving . Once set on 5, once on 2.5or 3 , and once on 1. Re-lathering each time.  I hope not . I’m intrigued , but don’t have time for shaving to be a 20 plus minute process!!!!!
    Upstate SC
    Large BGE
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 17,624
    All this because of the Headblade system used by the OP...  =)
    Louisville;  L & S BGEs, PBC, Lang 36; Burnin' wood in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer.  
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,035
    edited September 3
    etherdome said:
    @SGH,  This may be an ignorant question but..... if I currently have a multi blade system like Mach 3 or Quattro and switch to one of these “nice” razors that only have a single blade, do I have to make several passes with the “nice razor to get a super close shave? I’m only asking because I watched a video of a guy reviewing the Parker variant who basically shaved 3 times in one shaving . Once set on 5, once on 2.5or 3 , and once on 1. Re-lathering each time.  I hope not . I’m intrigued , but don’t have time for shaving to be a 20 plus minute process!!!!!
    In a nutshell, no. One pass with a good DE razor will give you a DFS (damn fine shave). When you see folks making several passes, they are usually trying to get a BBS (baby butt smooth) shave. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • TeefusTeefus Posts: 681
    SGH said:
    Here is a couple of examples of quality shaving creams if you chose to stay with a cream for simplicity. The first two creams must be lathered with a brush. This can be done in a bowl or on the face. 

    Here is a latherless cream (no brush required). Simply wipe it on. 

    Any of these will provide the protection and comfort that you are looking for when using a DE. 
    Cremo is my “daily driver” unless I can find King of Shaves. King of Shaves is hands down the best there is. Think Astroglide or KY Jelly. You could shave with a filet knife and be smooth and nick free. 


    Michiana, South of the border.
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