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Shavette question

How similar is the experience of using a shavette to a normal straight?

In practice (feel) and in quality of the shave.

I'm a super newbie to wet shaving but already starting to get curious about straights. My problem is that I really don't see myself taking care on the stropping and proper upkeep of the straight. I love the idea of holding the quality instrument of a traditional straight but I know myself and I'm not going to be able to care for the blade edge properly,

Shavette seems like a nice alternative being able to just chunk the blade for a new one but just how "gimmicky" is using a shavette vs the straight?

I'm concerned by looking at it that it's too gimmicky and might not really be like a true straight razor type experience.

I am hoping the replies will either say it's close enough to make it worth trying or confirm that it's not really all that close and skipping it until I'm ready (probably never) or to take the full straight plunge or stick with DE's.

What's your take?
 
A shavette and a real straight are very different. My advise is that if you want to have a go at using a straight razor, then buy a straight razor. There's a few places like whippeddog.com that can set you up quite cheaply.
 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
Moderator Emeritus
Your right, its not the same as a traditional straight razor...people who only shave with a shavette likely won't get good shaves with a traditional straight. Users of traditional straights, however, could probably shave with a DE blade glued to a chop stick and get a decent shave at that.

Quality of shave wise, all methods will give equally good shaves, its just the method with which you arrive at it. A shavette is cheap, so there would be no loss if you are unable to shave with it. Do a search for shavette, and you will get tons of opinions for and against as a first "straight" razor.

GL!!
 
Users of traditional straights, however, could probably shave with a DE blade glued to a chop stick and get a decent shave at that.
Hahahaha!

I almost choked/snorted up some of the Pyrat rum :pirate: I was sipping from my mouth up into my nose reading that..

I already have DE blades, chopsticks, and glue laying around here.......
 
Its a different beast, I can have a nice shave with my shavette, though I tend to cut myself more with it. I also have a cheapo shavette, which I find too light, but having said all that, it does give me a good shave when I use it, though it is not that often.
 
As others mentioned above, it is very different. I was straight shaving exclusively for over a year before buying my first shavette. Honestly, if I had to learn on that I would've quit straight shaving. A traditional straight is far more forgiving to a novice technique IMO. As stated above, you can get a great shave from them, but if your drawn to a traditional straight, just start with that. Learning stropping and upkeep isn't that bad.

Good luck
 
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Luc

Moderator Emeritus
I tried both, both will shave but... It doesn't feel the same... A real straight is really worth it. The shavette works but the real straight will give you better results IMO. It will also be easier to work with.
 
You have all confirmed exactly what I was afraid of....

So how hard will it be for me to learn stropping? Is it difficult to determine if you have done it right / sharp enough?
 
Is a Feather straight close to the same as a plain straight? Granted they cost way more than the shavette.

I have a whippeddog used straight with a poor man stop kit. Not a bad way to start
 
Is a Feather straight close to the same as a plain straight? Granted they cost way more than the shavette.

I have a whippeddog used straight with a poor man stop kit. Not a bad way to start
No, the Feather no-sharpen straights are like shavettes. They take kind of an injector style, single-edged blade. Basically what I have heard and read is that shaving with a shavette or one of the Feather no-sharpens is less forgiving and they give you less feedback. So in terms of vs. a straight it would be harder to learn and you may cut or nick yourself more often (especially if you have never used any straight before).

Personally I was going to go with the Feather no-sharpen as my first straight because I liked that there was no maintenance other than cleaning. Several good gents steered me towards Whipped Dog and I ordered my first straight yesterday. One thing I have found above all else, if someone here suggests something, and they have been doing it themselves for a long time (a lot of gentlemen on here that have been straight shaving for longer than I have been shaving in general so...) it is 100% worth taking their advice, let them save you from mistakes they possibly made before you :) .
 
You have all confirmed exactly what I was afraid of....

So how hard will it be for me to learn stropping? Is it difficult to determine if you have done it right / sharp enough?
It may take you a bit to get proficient at it (maybe a month?) but once you get it then it's no big deal. Ive been using a straight for a bit over three months and now it feels second nature and takes probably less than a minute when I strop
 
Let me jump in on the side of the shavette razor. I've been using a shavette for going on 2 years now, I started with one, gave regular straights a try, and went back to the shavette. Having started with the shavette, I did start with the Feather RG, I did have my share of problems with getting used to it, but I stuck with it and now I'm able to get excellent shaves with the thing. When I tried regular straights I was also able to get very good shaves from them also. Its all a matter of perference between the two razors. Using either the shavette or the regular its important to realize that you are using an open blade razor, and so the process is very much alike, and the learning curve is very close between the two.

Whichever one you choose to use comes down to your personal preference, and either is fine.
 
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Let me jump in on the side of the shavette razor. I've been using a shavette for going on 2 years now, I started with one, gave regular straights a try, and went back to the shavette. Having started with the shavette, I did start with the Feather RG, I did have my shave of problems with getting used to it, but I stuck with it and now I'm able to get excellent shaves with the thing. When I tried regular straights I was also able to get very good shaves from them also. Its all a matter of perference between the two razors. Using either the shavette or the regular its important to realize that you are using an open blade razor, and so the process is very much alike, and the learning curve is very close between the two.

Whichever one you choose to use comes down to your personal preference, and either is fine.
A whole lot of good in this post. Specifically on the "personal preference" and sticking with whatever you end up choosing. If I had given up DE shaving on my first try I wouldn't be where I am at today (way happier heh).
 
Stropping is not difficult at all. Just make sure that the first strop you buy is a cheap one because you will take nicks out of it.
 
Using either the shavette or the regular its important to realize that you are using an open blade razor, and so the process is very much alike, and the learning curve is very close between the two..
Enough for me to try it out...

I was not aware of the prices but once I saw it was ~$20, read this post, and watched a geofatboy vid of him shaving his first time with a Parker shavetteI figured why not?

If it gives me something even close to the feel/action of a regular straight and I like it this will make it easier to go for a straight. But at least or if nothing else it's a new toy right?
 
The one I bought was a Parker SR1 in stainless. They are quite inexpensive and nice quality (usually ~ $15-$18). I found it holds the blade very secure. It's funny, my SR1 had been collecting dust lately because I've got a bunch of new straights I've been trying out, but I broke it out this morning after all of this talk about shavettes.

Good luck
 
Let me jump in on the side of the shavette razor. I've been using a shavette for going on 2 years now, I started with one, gave regular straights a try, and went back to the shavette. Having started with the shavette, I did start with the Feather RG, I did have my share of problems with getting used to it, but I stuck with it and now I'm able to get excellent shaves with the thing. When I tried regular straights I was also able to get very good shaves from them also. Its all a matter of perference between the two razors. Using either the shavette or the regular its important to realize that you are using an open blade razor, and so the process is very much alike, and the learning curve is very close between the two.

Whichever one you choose to use comes down to your personal preference, and either is fine.
+1

I started with traditional str8, then tried a Parker shavette and have settled on a Feather AC. I agree that a traditional is more forgiving because it is not as sharp, but on the other hand I find I get a better shave with less effort with a disposable type because it is sharper. I was hesitant to go the straight route initially because of the upkeep, I can't even keep a decent edge on a chef's knife, and my reluctance proved to be warranted. It's hard for me to say if I benefitted from starting with a traditional because hindsight is 20/20 but if I were to do it over I would skip it. If the maintenance aspect is deterring you and the challenge of it doesnt appeal to you, I say try a Parker or a Feather. A Parker will cost you less than $20 to try and a feather will be easy to sell if you decide it's not for you.
 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
Moderator Emeritus
The best part of shaving with a traditional straight for me IS the upkeep, the stropping, cleaning, honing, oiling, etc. If I was going purely on ease of shaving I would sell everything and keep my 2 feathers. YMMV, but shaving with a feather has become akin to DEs for me, quick, easy, close, comfortable....but my Wade and Butcher is more fun.
 
Very different. As technical it may seem similar, and their handling too, but there are lots of differences. First of all a straight is heavy and large. This makes it well balanced. Most shavettes are off balanced. Except expensive ones. Just like the safety razors, straight razor can do some of the work with its own weight. Shavettes can not, you have to handle the thing like a feather and push the strokes more distinctly. At first its very hard to adjust the pressure on shavette. Because of the lack of weight, they are less stable than straights, so, very unforgivable with the blades you load them. Especially with blades like feathers, one tiny mistake, you get cut. Not a tiny bit of forgiving. Its very clear. But nothing give me a closer shave than a shavette.

Do the experience similar to a straight shave? no, it has its own feel
Do using it will help handling straights in future? yep, but you will still need to get used to the bigger, longer, scarier looking blade of the straight at first
Does it hard to use? yep, imo most unforgiving shave tool, but possibly closest shaver possible

What would I choose between too? Well I have both of them, use boht of them. Sharpening, honing, stropping is not a burden to me as I like doing those. But still I use my shavettes more often, as they are immensely practical. Slide a blade, and start shaving. Every time good shave, unlike a regular straight, which you need to care of it like a baby for all the time. Honing, stropping, drying, oiling up etc.

This is why most pops use safety razors, they combine the straight's or shavette's shave quality with the easy of use of the cartridge ****s. When you combine them with the right blade, you wont miss the straights or shavettes much.
 
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