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I tried every blade in my sampler pack: Here are the results

I purchased a 9 pack sampler pack and also added in a 5 blade sampler of Feather blades, making for a total of 10 different blades. I began my safety razor journey back in May of 2020 and have shaved with each blade 5 times each since then for a total of 50 shaves from the sampler pack. I shaved with each of the following in this order: Astra Superior Platinum, Shark Super Stainless, Astra Superior Stainless, Voskhod, Bolzano Superinox, Shark Super Chrome, Derby Extra, Derby Premium, Treet Falcon, Feather. I use a Muhle R89 as my safety razor. Although the length of time from shaves have been as little as 1 day to as long as 8 weeks, I typically shaved about once every 4 days on average if I had to make my best estimate.

Below are where I rank each blade after 5 uses from 1 blade from each brand.


#1. Derby Premium
#2. Voskhod
#3. Shark Super Stainless
#4. Bolzano
#5. Feather
#6.Derby Extra
#7. Shark Super Chrome
#8. Falcon
#9. Astra Superior Stainless
#10. Astra Superior Platinum


I had a difficult time deciding between the top two, but I gave the edge to Derby Premium. Derby Premium was the blade I used to shave off my 8 week beard. Although I got some cuts from the first shave, mainly because of how much hair there was, the rest of the four shaves I had absolutely no nicks, cuts, or irritation at all and had a very smooth and amazing shave with each shave. Voskhod blades were also very enjoyable as well, and I found it interesting that with each pass it seemed to do a better job of taking off the facial hair. I also thought Shark Super Stainless blades were nice as well and I would consider buying these in the future.

Outside of the top 3, it got a lot more difficult to rank the rest of the blades. I have to say that I was most disapointed with the Feather blade, as I have heard so much about the blade and I even went out of my way to purchase the 5 blade pack seperately to add to the sampler pack just because of how it is usually praised as the sharpest and arguably the best blade out there. While the shaves were not necessarily bad, I didn't have that amazing sensation like a lot of people claim to have had with it. I was nicked on almost every shave I had, and it did not feel very smooth on my face at all.

By far the worst blades were the Astra brands. For the Superior Platinum in general, I broke out in acne every time I used it. I am wondering why this is. While I was on an 8 week beard growth, I used it a few times to trim the neck and cheek line, and once again I broke out in acne using it. I don't know what material is used on the blade, but something about the blade in general does not cooperate well with my face at all.

These rankings are not set in stone, and I will continue to use the blades until I am all out. But as of now, Derby Premium, Voskhod, and Shark Super Stainless have been my 3 favorites so far and might buy the 100 packs of them once I am all out of blades from my sampler.

These results may be surprising, but I think this goes to show that every face is different, and while one blade may work well for someone, it can be the worst blade for someone else.
 
Derby premium is common to have a rougher shave first time they mellow out.
Typically the reason why you have to shave several times with a blade to appreciate it.
Next time a pure Gillette sampler pack (which will be huge) since you like sharp but not too sharp. So what should be in there
Silver blue
Platinum
Nacet
Wilkinson
7 o clock green
7 o clock black
Wizamet/polsilvers iridium
Perma sharp
King c Gillette

And maybe bic just be aware bic gets sharper on the second shave.

And nothing wrong to keep it to derby until you allmost finished that 100box
 
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Yes, I'd love to see his reaction to the GSB on it's second shave!
Lol lots of blades which change...
Gem is one of the blades if I have to use it I tend to cork it else a mweeh shave but if it is a day old great blade

Bic is a scary one, great on the first shave scary **** on second and third. Then it mellow out to superb.

Kai is another which can skin you unnoticed but if it matches the razor smoooth and weeks of life
 
I tried about 7 of those same blades from a sampler pack.
For me the Voskhod and Derby premium and Shark Super Stainless blades are also top 3.

The Astra SP are not good for me, the Astra SS are ok ish. And the Shark Chromiums start tugging after two shaves.
Other blades i tried are the SuperMax Super Stainless, good for me, in fact as good as the Shark SS blades.
I also like Gillette Bleue Extra blades, i bought them in France. I really wonder if these r the same as Gillette Silver Blues?
 
Interesting list!

This was also my reaction. I think a good way to put a sample group together is to read a couple of "5 favorite blade" posts (or similar). You'll find some names popping up many times over a few pages. Those popular blades would make a fine sample list.
 
Those are my top dogs too. My skin turns red when I use dorco primes. Maybe the blade coating? Anyway your not alone. Some blades are a hard no.
 
Derby premium is common to have a rougher shave first time they mellow out.
Typically the reason why you have to shave several times with a blade to appreciate it.
Next time a pure Gillette sampler pack (which will be huge) since you like sharp but not too sharp. So what should be in there
Silver blue
Platinum
Nacet
Wilkinson
7 o clock green
7 o clock black
Wizamet/polsilvers iridium
Perma sharp
King c Gillette

And maybe bic just be aware bic gets sharper on the second shave.

And nothing wrong to keep it to derby until you allmost finished that 100box
I might just do that! Thank you for the recommendations.
 
I might just do that! Thank you for the recommendations.
With some searching you can probably find how most blades progress in usage. If you have a blade which is rough on the first shave they sometimes cork or strop it to give it artificial wear before the first time.
for other blades that is already wasting the blade.
in se territory i palm strop gem and feather fhs and with the feather I have to be careful because it has no longevity just 1-2 shaves Gems have great life just rough first time so palm strop or styrofoam cut to get that gone and still leave 7-10 shaves.

If the blade shaves well on the second shave keep going until you get more irritation or it starts to tug instead of cut. Sometimes the cutting noise changes.

some blades will slowly start to wear down and others will do that abrupt.

some razors are utterly forgiving for which blade (my broman and snmirn are) others are a pita and like just one blade.

prep, razor and technique seem to have influence on blade life
 
I've done a search for posts about blade samplers & am posting the following information about the B & B Great Blade Exchange:

Using B&B's own Great Blade Exchange you can trade in 2 each of your blades in exchange for 2 blades of your choosing. Take a look at the list of available blades, quite impressive. The only limitation is you have to send in as many different brands of blades as you are taking out. In exchange, I'll send you 2 of all the blades you want to try, for the cost of a postage stamp!
 
Great information, thank you. Agree on the YMMV comments. I use both Derby Extra and Astra SPs and have found the Astras to be a step above the Derby's in initial sharpness and longevity with 5 - 6 good shaves vs 4 - 5 from the Derby's.

Regarding the Derby Premiums that so many are fond of. Has anyone every seen a direct communication from Derby regarding how the Premiums differ from the Extras?

In the Derby English language catalog the only difference listed is the use of Swedish steel. Otherwise the copy for both is identical with the statement "Special double coating with chromium, ceramic, platinum & tungsten for optimum edge durability & comfort" implying that the manufacturing process may be the same. Topic likely worthy of its own post.
 

FarmerTan

FarmerStan the Man
Great information, thank you. Agree on the YMMV comments. I use both Derby Extra and Astra SPs and have found the Astras to be a step above the Derby's in initial sharpness and longevity with 5 - 6 good shaves vs 4 - 5 from the Derby's.

Regarding the Derby Premiums that so many are fond of. Has anyone every seen a direct communication from Derby regarding how the Premiums differ from the Extras?

In the Derby English language catalog the only difference listed is the use of Swedish steel. Otherwise the copy for both is identical with the statement "Special double coating with chromium, ceramic, platinum & tungsten for optimum edge durability & comfort" implying that the manufacturing process may be the same. Topic likely worthy of its own post.
The difference in steel is HUGE to my incredibly handsome face!

Or, it could be the fact that the Premium ones are made by little elves in a hollow tree...
 
Great information, thank you. Agree on the YMMV comments. I use both Derby Extra and Astra SPs and have found the Astras to be a step above the Derby's in initial sharpness and longevity with 5 - 6 good shaves vs 4 - 5 from the Derby's.

Regarding the Derby Premiums that so many are fond of. Has anyone every seen a direct communication from Derby regarding how the Premiums differ from the Extras?

In the Derby English language catalog the only difference listed is the use of Swedish steel. Otherwise the copy for both is identical with the statement "Special double coating with chromium, ceramic, platinum & tungsten for optimum edge durability & comfort" implying that the manufacturing process may be the same. Topic likely worthy of its own post.

Swedish steel would mean Sandvik blade steel. There are many different alloys of Sandvik, some where made for razor blade applications. This is extremely good steel and is also used in knives.
 
I have only used Derby extra, and I think the older ones. If you live in the USA the Derby Premiums are almost the same price on Amazon for 100 and 200 packs, why even worry about the extra 50 cents. I wanted to try Derby Premiums but Merz is out
 
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