Bacterial Infection Due to Shaving...and how often do you sanitize your razors?

Discussion in 'General Shaving Discussion' started by cdmorten, Nov 28, 2011.

  1. Has anyone had any issues with this? My friend just got back from the ER with a bacterial infection that they've tracked down to not sanitizing his razor.

    That leads me to my next question of does anyone else sanitize (boil or bleach) their razors? I've only been doing this for 5 months and I've never sanitized my razor. I just wash it and wipe it.

    Just curious as to whether anyone else has had this issue.
  2. hmm, interesting. I've only sanitised any second hand razors I may have purchased online. As for my daily use razors, no, I have never
    actually gone beyond a rinse down and a you have me all paranoid :sad:
  3. I give mine a soak in barbicide every so often (once a week).

  4. Intrigued

    Intrigued Contributor

    How do they know it was due to not sanitizing the razor? While the infection may have started at the site of a razor nick, It could have been the brush that applied lather, the hand that touched the face, the towel that dried the face........
  5. I've never sanitized any of my razors with the intention of disease prevention. If I buy a second hand razor, it gets a scrub with the toothbrush and scrubbing bubbles. After that, I only clean with the scrubbing bubbles every month or so - and that's just to remove any soap scum.
  6. You can't just blame the razor, it could have been caused by other things as others have said.

  7. Infection from a razor??? Do you know if your friend is using a DE? I honestly can't say that I have ever heard of this happening.

    After each shave, I spray my razor down with some 70% iso alcohol. This probably kills off bacteria, but my motivation to do it is more about reducing soap scum build up and making sure the razor dries quickly.

  8. This is what I do after each shave. It smeems to help keep it extremely clean. Still have to take a toothbrush to it about once a month, more than likely due to the hard water I have here.

  9. Back in the day when I used a cartridge razor and gel all it got was a hot water rinse and a towel drying then it was back in the drawer it went. I never had a problem.

  10. I do not believe that the infection came from the razor itself, but rather at the site where he nicked himself. Bacteria usually does not enter through the skin unless there is a crack, cut, or any source of bleeding. When it comes to keeping yourself clean and infection free, I believe that it is a good habit to swish your DE blade in alcohol after you are done shaving and also to apply an alcohol based aftershave, like Brut or Aqua Velva. Personally, I swish my DE blade in alcohol (50% vol. because I use the cheapo 99 cent ones) because once the alcohol evaporates, my blade is clean, dry, and a bit shiny, but the emphasis here is that it is clean. Also applying an alcohol aftershave will help you with the bacteria problem. To be honest though, I never heard of anyone getting an infection from shaving, regardless of which type of razor used and I personally usually do the above methods because of bacteria, I just like my blade dry and shiny.
  11. This.
  12. Is Barbicide used full strength or is it diluted and how long will a bottle that size last?
  13. Except for Scrubbing Bubbles occasionally on vintage razors, and that was only to clean gunk off of them, I have never sanitized a razor.
  14. I sanitize used razors as part of the cleaning when I get them. Otherwise, no, I don't regularly sanitize razors. I do keep them clean by rinsing them thoroughly and letting them soak in hot water after I've shaved and I'm brushing my teeth & such. Cartridge razors especially, as they can get pretty gnarly fast if you're sloppy with them and people tend to use them a lot longer than DE blades.

    For sanitizing, I use Hydracide (generic Barbacide). I would not bleach or boil a razor as those methods have much more potential to damage the razor and I don't believe they offer any significant benefit.
  15. Good point. I have never "sanitized" a razor except for a second hand razor prior to using it. Consider the conditions in which it is being used. First you wash your face, then you shave in a soapy environment. After this you probably rinse the razor in hot water, followed by air drying.

    Even if you do attempt some sort of "sanitizing," as soon as you touch it or expose it to the air, you run the risk of contamination, unless you are shaving in an operating room. Even then, something could go wrong.........

    Oh, the worry........
  16. It is supposed to be diluted 2oz Barbicide to 32oz water.
  17. As many others have posted, I sanitize mine when I buy them. Then, I just rinse them when I use them. I've thought of dipping them in alcohol or something after shaving, but have never done this.
  18. BigFoot

    BigFoot Moderator Contributor

    Another method that works well is Marvicide. It is in an aerosol can and will kill most any bacteria, including the Hepatitis and HIV virus.

    I always spray all razors with it prior to 1st use. I also disinfect my straights with it after stropping. Not sure why but I just like to make sure I have a clean disinfected blade.
  19. I shave after a shower. My housekeeper disinfects the bathroom once a month. I can't imagine I have a lot of bacteria on my razor or shaving tools. I'm sure there is some, but I doubt anything harmful or in large amounts.

    Oh, and my razor is stored in mineral oil so that keeps it fairly well protected from bacteria as well.
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2011
  20. On thing to keep in mind is that one of the benefits of regular use of alcohol-based after shave is the reduction in the possibility of a post-shave infection if you nick yourself. That said, however, even in my pre-AS /cart & goo days, I never had a problem with post-shave infection.

    Aside from a "new" second hand razor, which I clean with scrubbing bubbles, I don't worry about disinfecting my razor. Far more likely, imho, that if you're going to get something it's going to be from the dirty hands or the dirty (used) towel.

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