What's new

Inexpensive Artist Club blades that don't suck

A couple months ago I bought a Univinlions branded J-style AC straight. It came with 10+1 unmarked blades, which I promptly set aside.

Weeks later, I went to pick up one of my AC razors to do some detail work on my beard, and was in need of a new blade: I was feeling hesitant to pull out a new Feather Pro, as I had taken a break from Artist Club razors for face shaves to try some DEs instead. Loading a fresh Pro felt like a waste.

So I remembered about the abandoned Univinlions blades, and said to myself: what can go wrong..?

Well, for starters, I had heard that those blades were rubbish and definitely not worth my time. They also came in a small, white, plain cardboard box without any text or logo whatsoever. The blades inside were wrapped in a piece of thin paper, slightly too large and folded inaccurately.

The presentation certainly didn't scream "quality", but the blade inside looked alright. Since I am just so trusting, I washed the blade and dipped it in alcohol before using it. Other than that, I set aside caution and soldiered on, for the sake of science!

I was surprised to find a sharp blade, perfectly able to slice skin if the razor's head was placed down carelessly. A few blades later, I can confirm this wasn't some kind of lucky exception: these are indeed capable blades.

They're not quite as sharp as a fresh Feather Pro, but can do some damage, of the good kind: they can give me BBS on my neck exactly like a Feather. Flip-side, they don't last as long; for the price, none of this should be a deal breaker.

The Univinlions blades might be worth a shot if you:
  • Like the idea of Artist Club refills that only cost as much as DE blades.
  • Think brand new Feathers are a little too much.
  • Don't mind the shorter lifespan
  • Don't mind the wait
  • Can look past appearances
The other catch is the blades can be obtained in small quantities, only by buying a razor; otherwise, they are sold in packs of either 50 or 100 pieces, however the 50-pack is half the price, or less, of a regular, brand-name dispenser, so if you don't like them, it's no big deal.

The 50 pack cost less than 10 bucks; the link below will show a J-style AC straight, so make sure to click on the box to the right to select the blades.
100 packs are also available but offer only fractional savings. Again, remember to click on the box to the right to view the blades.

If you have tried Univinlions, or other inexpensive AC blades that punched above their weight, I would love to hear about your experiences.
I have these Univinlions Artist Club blades. My initial impression is that they work okay but are not nearly as sharp as the ones from Feather. I might even say that I found a bigger difference between these Univinlions and Feathers than I did between the all various DE blades that I tried over the prior 10 years, but some of that DE blade memory is old and my senses are calibrated a little differently now.

I have intended to revisit these blades and do more head-to-head comparisons with the Feathers in a few different razors. My original impression is that after a shave or two they felt like a Feather with 15 shaves on it. Which is not necessarily bad, as Feathers can last a long time. I thought maybe if I use these blades every shave they would be fine, that I might even appreciate the step down in keeness, but that it would take some adapting if one is expecting Feather level sharpness.

These can be had for a good price, though with Feathers available online for $0.41-0.50/each (200 bulk) and very long lasting is there enough value in these $0.17-0.19/each Univinlions for the home shaver??? It is a question I have not answered for myself yet. I am glad to have these available and like the packaging better that the Feather dispensers. Though I when I opened them up I imagined some person folding the wrapping paper by hand and inserting them into the boxes, since the paper is not all even, and that gave me some pause.
Top Bottom