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How Much Does A Blade Matter

Maggardrazors sales them.
Their retail price might not be as cheap as the vendors onAmazon but at least Maggard is an absolutely reliable vendor (imho).
I must have given you the idea that I don’t love Feather blades. I do love them. I also Love BIC blades.
The factory that makes Bic Chrome Platinum is here ,in Greece.

Although they are made here,
they are “For Export Only” blades and even the local shops have to import them !

But the same factory produces another blade called Astor (Super) Stainless .

Some workers of the factory suggest that those two are the exact same blade ,but the Bic brand is for export ,whilst the Astor brand is for the domestic market.

If you ask me ,they are not the same blade.They are made from the same steel grade-imported from Japan-they do have the same temperature hardening and the same honing,but they must have different coatings.

Both are extremely sharp ,
they become noticeably smoother after their first or second use ,
but the Astor blades can
be quite “unpredictable” .

Maybe their red coloured pack ,denotes the thirst for drawing blood.
I do like both ,
but the Bic Chrome Platinum offers more relaxed shaves than the Astor .

I firmly believe that any blade made with Japanese or USA steel has to be good. Both countries charge over the average world price.

Japanese steel may not be the best choice in blade making because it is quite expensive. But Japonese steel is really hard, making it difficult to sharpen, but if the best equipment is used to sharpen it, the results can be fantastic.

Major Companies Using Japanese Steel are:

KAI – that makes sense.
Feather – that also makes sense. including the Kai and Feather brands.
German Personna – Persona White. (Surprise!)
Bolzano – a case in point of a company using great steel with poor equipment.
BIC – Yes BIC. Good quality blades.

source : https://globalshave.club/blog/f/everything-you-wanted-to-know-about-double-edge-razor-blades-but
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I've recently tried both BIC Chrome Platinum and BIC Astor in my FOCS and while their sharpness is very similar, the Astor blade feel more harsh and not as smooth as the Chrome Platinum did. BIC CP's were amongst the first blades that i've tried when I started my DE journey a few years ago and I don't remember in which razor i've tried them, but I remember that they were ok, but nothing impressive. After reading a post after post how sharp and great they were and some even compared them to Feathers, I looked at my blade box that is filled with either blades for tests or blades that don't work well for me and i'm probably never going to use again and there I found that I have one last BIC CP and i've decided to give it a try with the Fatip Grande.

I must say I was impressed. The blade was indeed sharp, but just enough to do it's job with ease and nothing more and also super smooth. The Fatip felt like a race car on my face and even if I increase the speed the results were great. It was a no brainer for me and I just had to order some blades. I've found a Turkish seller in Aliexpress and I bought 200 for around 25$ with free shipping and a few days later i've got a 6-7 pounds coupon from Ebay and i've bought 100 more from a guy from Jordan for around 6-7$ using the coupon. The carton packaging of the blades from Turkey and Jordan are slightly different and I suspect that the blades from Jordan are old batch and i'm yet to shave with them, but the blades from Turkey were not exactly the same as the one I shaved with from my sample. The Turkish ones are a bit sharper on the first shave and also very smooth.

I've also tried the BIC Astor a few weeks ago, because some people claim that the blades are the same and although I remember that my first and last shave with them wasn't as good, I decided to try them in the FOCS and although I was able to get a very close shave, but the shave itself wasn't comfortable and enjoyable at all. They felt just as sharp but also very harsh. Since i've kept the blade and some blades get better in their second use, I might give it a second chance, but regardless of the results, I don't think i'm ever going to try them again. It's funny how both of these blades are made in the same factory and I consider one to be one of the best and the other one to be one of the worsts blades ever.
Blade matters in the same way that the razor matters I guess. More expensive doesn't have to mean better, neither does more aggressive. Ironically, I've found that at this point I can't tell what is better for me. Parker blades seem to be the best for my face but I have thick beard growth and they're allegedly quite mild (don't know how to tell, its a razor blade lol). I was led to believe that I had to use feather etc. but honestly, unless you leave longer than 3+ days per shave, I find it hard to believe that the sharpness will make a difference. Just use what works and what is available for you. As long as it isn't rusted, damaged or obviously tainted there is a 99% chance that you can get a smooth, enjoyable shave with it in basically any razor as long as you use good technique and understand your skin.
Something about blades matters. Feather 1-2 shaves, Voskhod (0) will never try again, most other blades 2-4 shaves, KAI (6) shaves so far, probably a couple more to go....
Interesting views so far everyone. Thanks for the replies.

The next thing, can someone contextualise sharpness for me? In other words, a feather can come out the packet at “32” vs a Gillette Platinum at “45.” How different is that?? (This is in relation to a graph I found on here.)
It depends a lot on the razor how much difference there is. Some razors perform with allmost any blade but still excell with just a couple. Example is Broman which excels with a Kai but eats allmost anything and sometimes my face.
Other razors are really limited to one or two blades. Example is my qshave adjustable futul which is civilized and comfy with a Gilette silver blue but turns a butcher with most other blades.
Still prepping your face before shaving is even more important.
Interesting views so far everyone. Thanks for the replies.

The next thing, can someone contextualise sharpness for me? In other words, a feather can come out the packet at “32” vs a Gillette Platinum at “45.” How different is that?? (This is in relation to a graph I found on here.)
The numerical values for "sharpness" you are referring to are from the testing conducted at the site Refined Shave. There is not a lot of agreement among us DE shavers as to what these numbers really mean in terms of actual blade performance. The general consensus seems to be that it is difficult at best to quantify "sharpness" as perceived in actual shaving; there are a number of factors that contribute to the perception of sharpness. I don't mean to minimize the work of this gent over at RS, but there is really no substitute for the experience of trying blades on your face, in your razor. If you're like virtually everyone else here, some blades will feel smooth and sharp, others not so much. And that, it seems, is a very individualized thing.

There is some current discussion on the topic of blade sharpness here: Measuring blade sharpness: Does it tell us anything about shaving performance? - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/measuring-blade-sharpness-does-it-tell-us-anything-about-shaving-performance.599005/#post-11010837
Yes, the blade makes a difference. Even the same blade feels different in a different razor. I don't read this section of the forum much and I didn't read all the replies but all blades are basically made the same way but not all blades are equal. You will find different opinions on all blades. I bought 100 Voskhod blades on the grounds that a lot of people liked them. To me they pulled really bad and could not use them, at least they costed less than $10 to my door. Another popular one Personna Red, pulled my whiskers bad. Do a search for the Graham Field blade. There is also a thread on the worst blades in this forum somewhere.
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