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Merkur Progress vs Parker Variant for everyday?

Which is better as an everyday razor?

  • Merkur Progress

    Votes: 13 52.0%
  • Parker Variant

    Votes: 12 48.0%

  • Total voters
    25
  • Poll closed .
While I consider the Variant a slightly better razor because it comes with features I like that the Progress does not (knurled handle, metal adjustment knob, longer handle, choice of colors), if we consider purely the shave quality, the Progress gives a slightly better shave and the head is smaller so it is easier to maneuver in tight spots. For both, I like the fact that I can dial it between settings and I can do one pass on one setting and another pass on a different setting. I usually start off with 3.5 and end with 2-2.5
 
Just replaced my older Progress (short handle) with a new one. My favorite daily shaver.

On a different subject, my old Progress started biting for seemingly no reason so I stopped using it and went back to my Merkur 34c. A closer investigation revealed that the ring with the numbers on it was spinning freely on the adjusting knob which is why I was getting bit. Could not find a place to get it repaired. Very cool though, the place I bought it from; Gents Barber Shop, Cranston, RI (almost 2 years ago) sold me a new one for $40, free shipping.
 
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I had the Variant first and then the Progress, found the Progress gave me smoother shaves, better balance and the short handle made it more maneuverable. Also I like the vintage look it has, even got the plastic case for travel. The Variant now is gone!
 
As I have mentioned on other posts, the Merkur top on my Variant gives me a smoother shave, is more maneuverable under the nose and is more aggressive per setting.

I like the looks of the Variant a whole lot more than the Progress so putting that Merkur top cap on gives me everything I want.
 

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I just bought the Variant and couldn't be happier! I got mine on a black Friday special and got 20% off. I'm sure the Progress is a great razor as all Merkurs are, but I'm not enthused about the plastic adjuster.
 
OTOH I personally love the yellow plastic adjuster knob on the Merkur Progress. It is Germanic, as is a BMW or a Mercedes, and it gives this excellent shaving razor a personality!
 
The Progress has a smaller-profile top cap, so it wins for me.

Plus, the Variant’s handle is far too long and gets in the way. The short handled Progress is about right in terms of handle length.

If you prefer a long handled razor, then the Variant is a good choice. But you may want to consider a Merkur top cap to make it more manouverable.
 
To appreciate the "plastic" adjuster you have to understand the mindset of a designer in the fifties, plastic wasn´t considered cheap, it was a space age material and to include it in your designs you were implying that your brand was on the verge of technology. Sadly when plastic starting to flow (mold designer pun) to cheaper products our mindset changed and now is related to that, so we think that metal is better. For me, the adjuster gives the razor character and love the contrast of materials. But as always YMMV.

Would you complain about the adjuster on an Apollo Mikron?? I don´t :001_302:

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The Progress has a smaller-profile top cap, so it wins for me.

Plus, the Variant’s handle is far too long and gets in the way. The short handled Progress is about right in terms of handle length.

If you prefer a long handled razor, then the Variant is a good choice. But you may want to consider a Merkur top cap to make it more manouverable.

Remember that there is a Progress withlong handle... not my cup of tea, but there is...

merk-adj-2.jpg
 
Ever wonder where the design of the Merkur Progress ivory adjuster knob comes from?
I have seen that picture before and the knob is iconic so I have no problem with it. I expect it may shatter on a bad fall but no mishaps to date.
It shaves beautifully and I like the balance so ideal for everyday use. At some point I am going to pick out the numbers and position marker in red varnish to enhance the look; just like some of the older Progress razors.
 
I really like my Variant but I find it a tad too heavy.

I may invest in the Progress and decide.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
Brethren,

The question of which is the better shaver for daily use, the Merkur Progress or the Parker Variant, reminds me of another adjustable razor question that has never been settled. Which is the better shaver, the Fat Boy or the Slim? Or the Super Adjustable?

Such questions are unanswerable for another person. One can only test the razors themselves for a meaningful evaluation, and then the answer may be they are essentially equal.

There are days when I believe the Fat Boy is superior. There ae other times when I consider the Slim to be better. And there are mornings when I feel the Super Adjustable is the finest performing Gillette Adjustable ever made.

Similarly, I believe the Progress and the Variant, though dissimilar in appearance, and made in different areas of the world, are essentially equal in performance, quality, and in desirability.
 
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