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'PolSilver', New Blade In The Current Rotation ...

Good evening to all you fine wet shaving folks. I'm usually hesitant to present a subject that is already well travelled territory and still very subjective, but today I wanted to present some thoughts of today's shaving experience and to trigger conversation about the four (4) blades currently in my rotation. Come on, you know we all love to discuss our DE blades!

Wet shaving with Safety and Straight Razors is a therapeutic experience and I attempt to convert anyone that will listen...even every so often hosting a whisky, cigars, and shaving night for friends and acquaintances that like that sort of thing. It's always a good time and we had one of our attendees girlfriend accompany him and want to learn about traditional wet shaving her parts :punk:, (cough, cough). Legs and such... I'll let your imaginations fill in the rest. Enough about that.
:shaving::a54::behead::kyle1:

Ok, back to the meat of the conversation, DE blades.

Currently, I have four (4) blades in the rotation. 20190712_Blades.jpg

'Feather(2), Personna Red(3), Rapira Swedish(3), PolSilver(3)'. (# of shaves on each)

My goto is usually 'Personna Red' 3:1 over others I have in rotation, but today, the 3rd on the 'PolSilver' may have been the best shave I've ever had.

Let me define what 'best' means to me...Smoothest, effortless, no tugging...a BBS shave with little to no irritation and no weepers. With my ultra sensitive lower neck area, there are very few days that I don't have irritation in that area. I use a cold water rinse quickly transitioning to my Alum stick followed by a Roman announcer at the colosseum speaking through a mega-phone in my head, proclaiming 'Let the stinging begin'. Today, there was no stinging. Obviously, I felt a sensation to the touch of the Alum stick, but that was another indiction that something was different.

My technique during this shave was my basic homogenous shave...WTG, XTG, ATG with my 41$ Gillette Aristocrat J3. You ask why not a Fatboy or some other? Well, I have a couple Fatboy adjustables, a couple Red Tips, a couple of 1964 Aristocrat adjustables, all great, even a open comb bronze Timeless, very good as well, but I picked up this J3 Aristocrat for 41$, which, yes, is the year and quarter in which I was born, but all that aside...after sanitizing, a little polishing and a drop or two of lube, it has always given me the most consistent shaves out of all the others and become my most popular goto each day. Very easy to wield.

Anyway, let me know what you think about these blades. Personal experience, the good, the bad, the ugly...

***Disclaimer*** If you would like to skip my further ramblings, feel free, and head straight to commenting on your experiences with the DE blades listed.


My Scottish grandfather use to say to me when I'd peek in on him while shaving, 'Son, it only takes a few minutes a day to freshen up and have a good shave, 'cause you never get a second chance to make a first impression.' Good advice for any young man, or woman for that matter...LOL Heard a female comedian joke one time, saying, '...if guys don't shave for a day or two, its sexy, if ladies don't its called birth control...LOL Ok, maybe not as funny as I thought, anyway...

Ok, let me set the stage of what I do. Like most folks, I have my routine, preferences, must dos. To have a soothing therapeutic experience as mentioned, for me, it can't change much. See list with exhaustive comments...LOL

1> Shower (Taylor of Old Bond Street, TOBS, Sandalwood bar soap and shampoo. I switch between the TOBS sandalwood and the St. Johns Bay Rum bar soap. Both are awesome and worth the extra expense to me. Here's where I might as well say...YMMV on what you can stomach to pay. By no means do I imply that others are not just as worthy, just that I like what I like and trying other products, although great, somehow diminishes the experience for me. I'm not in it to experiment too much, except a bit on blades.)

2> Tree Hut Shave Oil (what my wife uses to shave her parts. Slickest stuff I've ever used, no real smell to it, just moistens up that beard a bit better than just hot water. Good enough for her parts, good enough for me. :wink2: Apply it to my face/beard before exiting the shower, since thats where it lives.)

3> TOBS Shave Oil on my lower neck. (Very thick oil. Heat it rubbing in my hands before rubbing it into my lower neck.)

4> Hot water wash clothe held to my face/neck for a bit before apply shaving cream.

5> TOBS Sandalwood shaving cream with my Simpsons Commodore 3 Badger brush. (No fancy shave bowls, just dip it in the hot water I ran in the sink, give it flick to toss off excess water and swipe it through the TOBS tub back and forth, once each and start on-face lathering, then set the brush in the stand for the 2nd and 3rd passes. A tub of TOBS SW lasts me a long time. All my supplies do really. People in general use too much. Been watch too many gurus trying to sells stuff on youtube I'd imagine...LOL All I'm going to say about that.)

6> WTG - Aristocrat on 9, most aggressive >XTG - on 5, medium >ATG - on 3, mild, sometimes I'll spot buff/polish ATG on back on 5 when I feel a small rough spot, but today. Nothing of the sort.

7> Cold water rinse and straight to the Alum stick with cool water still on my face. Usually, its grin and bare time until the sting subsides, but not today. Towel dab to dry a bit before splashing stringent or maybe just stoner, depending what flavor I'm in the mood for.

Now for the good stuff. Stay with me cause here's where the therapy continues...

8> Thayers splash of either Peach astringent or Cucumber toner. (maybe redundant after the Alum, but I love the feel so much, don't judge). Let my face air dry while I clean and dry my razor, ring out my brush, clean out the sink to avoid the frying pan being waved at me next time our paths cross in the kitchen and I didn't clean the sink. Yikes! YKWIM

9> After another dab with the towel... back to my beloved TOBS Sandalwood aftershave or St. Johns Bay Rum. If drinking whisky made me feel as good as the aromas on these two aftershaves, I'm be a drunk 10 times over. Oh, who am I kiddin', its a straight draw between the two.

So, if you were brave enough to read my list, feel free to comment on that as well. It's just my routine, preferences, not a product review, but if anyone is considering any of what I mentioned. I wouldn't be using it if I didn't think it gave me a great experience. :biggrin1:

20190712_Blades.jpg
 
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The Rapira Swedish is a mainstay in my rotation. I find it a very comfortable shaver while providing adequate stubble busting power. Not the sharpest but definitely effective.
 
The Rapira Swedish is a mainstay in my rotation. I find it a very comfortable shaver while providing adequate stubble busting power. Not the sharpest but definitely effective.
I concur. Not the sharpest, but definitely more comfortable than the sharper blades. I've found many of the sharper blades too harsh on my sensitive lower neck area. Racketing the Gillette adjustable down to 1 in that area helps, but doesn't seem as consistent. Each shave on Rapira Swedish has gotten better and better. I've been impressed.
 
I think I need to get me some Rapira Swedish and give it a go. Been suddenly hearing a lot about them lately.

Of other other three, I prefer Polsilvers by a wide margin.
 

NoScrubs

Contributor
I have read that the adjustable Aristocrat is the same build as the adjustable Slim. Can anyone that has or had both compare the shaves?
 

Esox

Ambassador
My goto is usually 'Personna Red' 3:1 over others I have in rotation, but today, the 3rd on the 'PolSilver' may have been the best shave I've ever had.
Polsilver was one of my best blades in all of my DE's. I used one for 20 shaves over 5 weeks and on shave #20 it felt as sharp as a fresh Gillette Yellow and even smoother.

@Cal used one to 120 shaves.

120 shaves on a Polsilver Super Iridium,

and done. :001_smile

I hadn't been noticing that the last few shaves had taken a little more work to get to BBS. I suspect that was due to some technique improvement because the shaves weren't taking any longer than before. So (barring the occasional one off) that was 120 great shaves. The blade is no doubt good for plenty more shaves but it's lost that superb sharpness that make the shaves so easy. So with the rule "only great shaves" in mind that's the end of the run for this very nice blade.
 
Like you, I can only get two good shaves out of a Feather blade. Somewhere during the 3rd shave, the blade starts to irritate my face. With most blades I can get 3 shaves and occasionally I can use a blade for 4 shaves before it either becomes too dull or too harsh.

Also like you, I love the Personna Israeli Red blades. They are not quite as sharp as a Nacet, but they feel a little smoother on my face. I can use Israeli Reds in most razors from mild to aggressive. I do not particularly like the Personna Lab Blue blades as the blade is too dull on the first shave, but as the "comfort coating" wears off, the blade becomes as sharp as an Israeli Red, so I would rather start with a Red in the first place.

I am not certain I have ever used the Rapira Swedish. I am not sure they are sharp enough for my beard, but I do like the Rapira Platinum Lux.

I primarily use Polsilver blades in more aggressive razors, but I prefer the 7 O'Clock SharpEdge yellow as I find it to be a little smoother on the face.
 
They're the same razor, the Aristocrat is gold plated instead of nickel.
Exactly. They also have a Aristocrat presentation case too, but this one didn't have that any longer when I got it. I do have a mint '64 Aristocrat that has the presentation case and the original blades they included with it.
 
Polsilver was one of my best blades in all of my DE's. I used one for 20 shaves over 5 weeks and on shave #20 it felt as sharp as a fresh Gillette Yellow and even smoother.

@Cal used one to 120 shaves.
No way. 120 shaves? My usual routine is to trash most blades after approx. 5 shaves, but being new to the Polsilvers, I'm going to ride it until can't cut butter...LOL, to find out how much life it actually has in it. Wish me luck I don't gash my face.
 
Like you, I can only get two good shaves out of a Feather blade. Somewhere during the 3rd shave, the blade starts to irritate my face. With most blades I can get 3 shaves and occasionally I can use a blade for 4 shaves before it either becomes too dull or too harsh.

Also like you, I love the Personna Israeli Red blades. They are not quite as sharp as a Nacet, but they feel a little smoother on my face. I can use Israeli Reds in most razors from mild to aggressive. I do not particularly like the Personna Lab Blue blades as the blade is too dull on the first shave, but as the "comfort coating" wears off, the blade becomes as sharp as an Israeli Red, so I would rather start with a Red in the first place.

I am not certain I have ever used the Rapira Swedish. I am not sure they are sharp enough for my beard, but I do like the Rapira Platinum Lux.

I primarily use Polsilver blades in more aggressive razors, but I prefer the 7 O'Clock SharpEdge yellow as I find it to be a little smoother on the face.
Thanks for that Ray. You triggered a thought on the Polsilver in more aggressive razors... As mentioned I've got a couple of nice Gillette Red Tips that are awesome razors on the WTG, maybe XTG, but eat my face off on the ATG...LOL . I'm going to dig one out and pair it with a Polsilver and see what I get on that 3rd pass. They are easy razors to wield as well, like the slim adj aristocrat I use. If you like a more aggressive razor and don't vary the aggression depending on the pass, pick up a Red Tip. Close shave is an understatement...LOL
 

Esox

Ambassador
No way. 120 shaves? My usual routine is to trash most blades after approx. 5 shaves, but being new to the Polsilvers, I'm going to ride it until can't cut butter...LOL, to find out how much life it actually has in it. Wish me luck I don't gash my face.
They smooth out for me at shave 4. Again at shave 8 but then they get harsh for shave 12, smooth out again, harsh again at 18 and then the magic happens. The one I used to shave 20 was and still is the nicest DE blade I've used. I could have taken it further but 20 shaves is more than enough for me on any blade. By shave 20, for what I paid for those 200 blades, that blade cost me exactly $0.02c's CAD.

Perma-Sharp Super is another nice blade. Very sharp and very smooth. I used one for over 20 shaves but I stopped counting at 18. Perma-Sharp Super starts like a Gillette Yellow and as far as I could tell it didnt change at all while I was using it. A Gillette Yellow only went 9 shaves, but it was really done at 7.
 
They smooth out for me at shave 4. Again at shave 8 but then they get harsh for shave 12, smooth out again, harsh again at 18 and then the magic happens. The one I used to shave 20 was and still is the nicest DE blade I've used. I could have taken it further but 20 shaves is more than enough for me on any blade. By shave 20, for what I paid for those 200 blades, that blade cost me exactly $0.02c's CAD.

Perma-Sharp Super is another nice blade. Very sharp and very smooth. I used one for over 20 shaves but I stopped counting at 18. Perma-Sharp Super starts like a Gillette Yellow and as far as I could tell it didnt change at all while I was using it. A Gillette Yellow only went 9 shaves, but it was really done at 7.
Good info. Thank you for the feedback Esox. Yeah, I'm certainly going to give the Polsilver a workout, but I think 20 will be the finish for it. From your and everyone else's responses, I'm going to push all my blades a bit more to see if they have more life than I think. Each blade will be different I'm sure, but who knows, all the data collected will be good data to have. And, as pricey as my fav blades are getting, the more shaves the better.

Maybe that will be my next post. Feedback on how the blades I presented performed from 5 to 20 shaves. Maybe exclude the Polsilver since you've already covered that analysis very well, but I'd like to know how the Personna Reds will perform along with the rest. I had heard that the 'Personna 74 Reds' with tungsten hold up extremely well, but are 'all but extinct'.

I've heard good things about the Perma-Sharp but I have never shaved with it. Same with Voskhod. I have a tuck of the Voskhod to try. I'll have to pick a tuck of the Perma-Sharps to try as well.
 

Esox

Ambassador
Good info. Thank you for the feedback Esox. Yeah, I'm certainly going to give the Polsilver a workout, but I think 20 will be the finish for it. From your and everyone else's responses, I'm going to push all my blades a bit more to see if they have more life than I think. Each blade will be different I'm sure, but who knows, all the data collected will be good data to have. And, as pricey as my fav blades are getting, the more shaves the better.

Maybe that will be my next post. Feedback on how the blades I presented performed from 5 to 20 shaves. Maybe exclude the Polsilver since you've already covered that analysis very well, but I'd like to know how the Personna Reds will perform along with the rest. I had heard that the 'Personna 74 Reds' with tungsten hold up extremely well, but are 'all but extinct'.

I've heard good things about the Perma-Sharp but I have never shaved with it. Same with Voskhod. I have a tuck of the Voskhod to try. I'll have to pick a tuck of the Perma-Sharps to try as well.
Theres a lot of info in this thread - Excalibur Club - Blade Longevity DE, SE and Injector

Many members push blades very far. Much farther than I can.

Voskhod I liked too but their a bit quirky. I found the first shave very smooth. The second was harsh and the third very harsh but on the 4th shave they smoothed right out again.

Very smooth blades for me are the entire Gillette 7 O'Clock series, Perma-Sharp, Lord Platinum and Rapira Platinum Lux.

This is the thing about blades, for every person that likes X blade, theres another person that it doesnt work as well for. Derby Extra, the older ones most dislike with enthusiasm lol were one of my top 3 blades out of over 30 I tested. They arent the sharpest and they arent the smoothest but they balance both sides of that coin really well for me. The only downside I found with them is I only got 4 nice shaves from them.

If you havent had a look at Try A Blade, you might. You can buy as many or as few of any blade you want to try. Try as many as you can and you'll find some favorites. I've tried ~35 different blades and found a top 5.
 
I've heard good things about the Perma-Sharp but I have never shaved with it.
One of my Top 5 blades for sure. imho the 2nd sharpest blade out there, one increment below Feather, but also quite smooth and easy to work with (forgiving) given its sharpness. Considerably sharper than a Polsilver (also a top 5 blade for me). I agree with the above advice to hit Try A Blade and have some fun trying out different blades until you find ones you enjoy the most.
 

ackvil

Moderator
Like you, I can only get two good shaves out of a Feather blade. Somewhere during the 3rd shave, the blade starts to irritate my face. With most blades I can get 3 shaves and occasionally I can use a blade for 4 shaves before it either becomes too dull or too harsh.

Also like you, I love the Personna Israeli Red blades. They are not quite as sharp as a Nacet, but they feel a little smoother on my face. I can use Israeli Reds in most razors from mild to aggressive. I do not particularly like the Personna Lab Blue blades as the blade is too dull on the first shave, but as the "comfort coating" wears off, the blade becomes as sharp as an Israeli Red, so I would rather start with a Red in the first place.

I am not certain I have ever used the Rapira Swedish. I am not sure they are sharp enough for my beard, but I do like the Rapira Platinum Lux.

I primarily use Polsilver blades in more aggressive razors, but I prefer the 7 O'Clock SharpEdge yellow as I find it to be a little smoother on the face.
Your experience with Feather blades mirrors mine on most razors. However, with a Feather AS-D2 razor I can get 6+ shaves with a Feather.
 
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