What's new

First shavette shave, maybe last

I'd been wanting to try a shavette for a while now. I've been face shaving with a straight since Feb. of 2014 and haven't looked back. Head shaves are still DE though.
These past 6 years I've always kinda wondered what a shavette would be like. I finally asked for a cheap one for Christmas and tried it out today.

Sheesh...I think I'll stick with my coticule finished straights.
Soooooo different.
Virtually no feedback(or maybe just different feedback that I can't read yet)
Very heavy scales make it a bit unwieldy(and even more difficult to maintain pressure and angle)
I never thought Derby blades were terribly sharp when I used to use them with my DE...they're sharp...and they can't discern skin from hair.
I can see how people would describe a shavette as requiring you to have perfect technique. However, the lack of feedback makes it nearly impossible for me to realize my angle or pressure is off until it's too late.

Not sure when/if I'll pull out this shavette again but a couple nicks are going to have to heal up first!!!!

 
I am NO expert in shavettes, but use them sometimes (not in the neck). Zero pressure, almost parallel to skin surface and very slippery soap. If it starts to jump or feels like it will bite me... I will abort that day.... I use the blades I quit using in my DE, usually 2-3 shaves before and used the once in shavette. I also use new blades , the ones I do NOT like for DE (Derby , Voskhod and some others). Just go slow....it's a different animal this thing....but it's a thrill (sometimes).
 
I tried a mid sharp blade in my Parker shavette, and got a mixed result.

Then I put in a Kai. Night and day difference. Try a nice really sharp blade before you put it down forever is my advice.
 
I was a shavette newbie until 3 weeks ago...picked up a Focus R21 from TSS
to help me practice strokes and prepare for using straights. Best decision I ever made.
My first two shaves were not enjoyable but after figuring out the angle and pressure,
direction of strokes my growth needs etc, I am getting some excellent shaves.

For me, the trick has been short strokes...not rushing...and most important...to ensure the
blade is never touching your skin while static...it should always be in motion when it contacts
your skin. And stretching the skin as much as possible is also paramount. Another thing you might do
is practise strokes without a blade in the shavette....my left hand was pretty weak at first but I have trained
it to be pretty smooth and steady.

The Focus R21 is pretty light and deft...the only area a shavette cannot address 100% is XTG on the neck.
 
Give the Derby blades a pass. Get some Feathers. Keep the spine way down close to the face. This is very important. Stretch the skin good and tight, use light brushy strokes. Relather as needed. Before I retired, the last couple of years I always took a pair of shavettes with me when I went to work. With a good sharp blade and the right technique, the shave is pretty darn good. No need for multiple passes, no AS burn.
 
I use a Feather AC DX, it is indeed on a whole different level from a half DE shavette; it is also a very different price. I would recommend trying a Feather DE blade and working on the technique. Similar to the advice above, focus on the angle, stretch the skin, use short strokes, and ensure the blade is never static while in contact with the skin. Good luck.
 
I use one every once in a while, like Dilbone says, no feedback.

But, I like them, I use the universal shavette that uses the full DE blade, I have old Hart scales on it (they're very light)
 
I use GSB's in my DE"s for head shaves and can go a month on those blades of 4 shaves a week. Love them. I may try one in the shavette.

Already being quite proficient with a straight after nearly 6 years, I really don't have any "need" to master this shavette thing other than just to say I did. I would likely have to make myself a set of scales for this boat anchor if I plan to continue using it from time to time.

It won't go in the drawer just yet, but I'm not sure it'll be called up for duty more than every couple weeks.

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk
 
Try a feather Artist Club. It’s on a whole other level from these half DE shavette.
I am quite sure that is true. However, price per shave is a lot higher, and the blades are one trick ponies. A DE blade can also be used in a DE razor. And one DE blade equals two shavette blades. Then there is the initial cost. Most beginners are going to opt for the $10 and below category of shavette and maybe upgrade to an AC or similar after AD sets in.

A lot of the difference in actual shave quality depends on shave technique as well as a sharp blade. Cost wise, Feather DE blades are in a sweet spot, if you buy by the hundred. About 20c each, so 10c per shavette load, so 2c per shave or less. There are plenty of DE blades that cost half or a third as much, but the Feather is very sharp. But lets say you run out of blades or are separated from your stash. You can always grab a pack of Personna Blues from Sallys or a pack of whatever blades at the drugstore in a pinch. The AC blades could be a challenge to find, and even buying them online is a bit pricey. Aren't they somewhere in the 75c to $1 per blade range? How many shaves from a blade? Even if you get ten good shaves from a blade, it still costs 5x per shave over the Feather DE blade. I doubt that the shave is 5x better. Maybe 5x easier to get that great shave, but my shavette shaves are as good as straight shaves with my best edges, if I only use high quality/performance DE blades. There is a learning curve. Once you get over the hump the shave is nothing to complain about.
 
I am quite sure that is true. However, price per shave is a lot higher, and the blades are one trick ponies. A DE blade can also be used in a DE razor. And one DE blade equals two shavette blades. Then there is the initial cost. Most beginners are going to opt for the $10 and below category of shavette and maybe upgrade to an AC or similar after AD sets in.

A lot of the difference in actual shave quality depends on shave technique as well as a sharp blade. Cost wise, Feather DE blades are in a sweet spot, if you buy by the hundred. About 20c each, so 10c per shavette load, so 2c per shave or less. There are plenty of DE blades that cost half or a third as much, but the Feather is very sharp. But lets say you run out of blades or are separated from your stash. You can always grab a pack of Personna Blues from Sallys or a pack of whatever blades at the drugstore in a pinch. The AC blades could be a challenge to find, and even buying them online is a bit pricey. Aren't they somewhere in the 75c to $1 per blade range? How many shaves from a blade? Even if you get ten good shaves from a blade, it still costs 5x per shave over the Feather DE blade. I doubt that the shave is 5x better. Maybe 5x easier to get that great shave, but my shavette shaves are as good as straight shaves with my best edges, if I only use high quality/performance DE blades. There is a learning curve. Once you get over the hump the shave is nothing to complain about.
Feather SS folding now $69 on Amazon.

Blades, 33-50 cents apiece (approximately). Last me about a month shaving 4 times/week. (I can easily get 14 very comfortable, smooth shaves from a Schick Proline blade; 16 typically. 18 would not be much of a stretch.)

Shave quality difference between the Feather SS with an AC blade and a half-DE shavette? Priceless.
 
I'd been wanting to try a shavette for a while now. I've been face shaving with a straight since Feb. of 2014 and haven't looked back. Head shaves are still DE though.
These past 6 years I've always kinda wondered what a shavette would be like. I finally asked for a cheap one for Christmas and tried it out today.

Sheesh...I think I'll stick with my coticule finished straights.
Soooooo different.
Virtually no feedback(or maybe just different feedback that I can't read yet)
Very heavy scales make it a bit unwieldy(and even more difficult to maintain pressure and angle)
I never thought Derby blades were terribly sharp when I used to use them with my DE...they're sharp...and they can't discern skin from hair.
I can see how people would describe a shavette as requiring you to have perfect technique. However, the lack of feedback makes it nearly impossible for me to realize my angle or pressure is off until it's too late.

Not sure when/if I'll pull out this shavette again but a couple nicks are going to have to heal up first!!!!

Oddly enough, that is the exact kit I bought for my first shavette about 4 years ago. Before that, I used only straights. Nowadays, I'm about 50/50 straight/shavette.

What I can tell you about the kit you have based on my experience is that the razor/holder is decent. It holds the blades using the same mechanism as the Parker SR1, and the blade exposure is what I'd call moderate. The weight of it felt natural to me.

The blades, however, are on the less-forgiving side as far as half-DE's go. Something a bit milder like a Gillette Silver Blue (aka "GSB") will give you a much easier shave. I would suggest trying a milder DE blade before abandoning shavettes. You may also consider the Vincent Sigma blade, which is slightly thicker, fits your razor well, and is much more forgiving than the Derby.


s-l1600.pngsigma.jpgsigma1.jpg

The most forgiving half-DE shavette I have used is the KureNai GF 35 (knockoff of the Kai Captain, modified to take half-DE blades). However, even the KureNai will bite if I'm not super careful with those Derby Pro blades. The razor came with a pack of Dorco blades, which are much more forgiving than the Derby Pro's.

20190930_083233-1.jpg

I will add that in my experience (in terms of shavettes), I found that I much prefer the Artist Club shavettes over DE shavettes. The longer blades are a bit closer to the same shave experience as a straight, and I find that the blade life (with proper care) easily justifies the cost over DE blades. The entry cost of AC razors can sometimes turn off a newbie who wants to try before committing to them, but there are knockoffs and less expensive AC compatible razors available. Starting price is about $10. Feel free to PM me if you'd like some links.

There are several AC blade types available (including guarded blades that make it darn near impossible to nick yourself IME), and I recommend trying at least a few of them via tryablade.com.

That's my (long-winded) two cents.

Rob
 
Feather SS folding now $69 on Amazon.

Blades, 33-50 cents apiece (approximately). Last me about a month shaving 4 times/week. (I can easily get 14 very comfortable, smooth shaves from a Schick Proline blade; 16 typically. 18 would not be much of a stretch.)

Shave quality difference between the Feather SS with an AC blade and a half-DE shavette? Priceless.
Okay then. You have thought it out and weighed the tradeoffs. Too many guys automatically assume the more expensive tool is the better tool. Or the first or last thing they tried is the best.
 
Give the Derby blades a pass. Get some Feathers. Keep the spine way down close to the face. This is very important. Stretch the skin good and tight, use light brushy strokes. Relather as needed. Before I retired, the last couple of years I always took a pair of shavettes with me when I went to work. With a good sharp blade and the right technique, the shave is pretty darn good. No need for multiple passes, no AS burn.
Don't agree with you on that one. I'm a long time Shavette user and I find the Derbys give a great shave with a little practice. My favourite though is half a Voskhod. I find the feathers too harsh for me in a Shavette,
 
Stainless handle shavettes are just awkward. Very unbalanced and tend to rotate easily in the hand. Try a Parker PTB or SRW with plastic scales. Both Focus shavettes are nice too. Avoid stainless or thick wood. There is no heft in the bladed portion to counterbalance it
 
I can shave really well with a Parker shavette and a half Shark blade. Feather blades are a no go for me. They are very unforgiving blades which I don't even want to use in a DE, let alone in a shavette. Once you've learned how to shave with a barber razor, it's actually very easy. I would not go for a metal handle. Wood or plastic are better IMO.
 
Stainless handle shavettes are just awkward. Very unbalanced and tend to rotate easily in the hand. Try a Parker PTB or SRW with plastic scales. Both Focus shavettes are nice too. Avoid stainless or thick wood. There is no heft in the bladed portion to counterbalance it
[/QUOTE
Parker's have a very positive blade holding mechanism. I love them
 
If you have an old whetstone, use it to dull the corners.

Also, try to get a Weck or at least one of the "hair shapers" that use the single-edge blades with a spine -- much better than a DE-style.
 
Shave quality difference between the Feather SS with an AC blade and a half-DE shavette? Priceless.
This. If I were worried about a few extra cents per shave, I'd be in the wrong hobby. ;)

If you've ever held an AS-D2 in your hand, you know the type of craftmanship feather puts into that razor. I feel that the Artist Club has that same level of fit and finish, and it's a pleasure to shave with one. The blade size and rigidity is closer to a straight razor. I prefer it over a regular straight, of which I have several very nice specimens... because I don't really jive with all the stropping and blade maintenance. With the AC, I unfold the razor and it's ready to go!
 
Top