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Very mild yet efficient non boutique razor recommendation for a long term DE user with reactive/sensitive skin

I keep putting off trying my Merkur Progress razors. I have a short handled one.... and an XL I have for our son's backup. I also have the Mergress in both handle lengths. I really need to try the Mergress razors. They are the only adjustable razors I own but the Mergress, Ogress and the regular Progress razors show up in so many SOTD photos here.
I find it to be a nice shave!
I have had the most incredible shaves the past three nights (generally shave at night) with a Razor Rock razor, Lupo if I recall correctly. It was an incredible gift and I think the baseplate is a a 110 gap. You wouldn't think of it as mild, but I get a mindless and smooth shave with it, surprisingly so.
Spiral handle British aluminum tech. You're welcome.
Just like my 1958-9 English aluminium handle Tech

At a blade gap of around .26", a beautifully smooth yet efficient shaver, loves a keen blade but will happily accept almost all I've run through her.

I would highly recommend this @sten

Get the baseplates with the flat end cap which will be brass, like this. The aluminium handled examples will look identical to this.

The English aluminium swirl handled ones like mine come in at around 32 gms, and are very common on the English bay. Excellent examples can be picked up, with shipping to the CONUS, for around $45-50.

Here's a very clean example for £19.99 or $26.17 at latest exchange rates.
Vintage Gillette Tech Safety Razor | eBay - https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/195224361105?hash=item2d74475891:g:xu4AAOSwn21i1Fi6&amdata=enc%3AAQAIAAAA4Hp8sPDZu9Gb%2FsmCwJaoCjSX2YJX85eWkJSD%2BGcdUMKC9XEyoimaF4u%2FNfA0XG%2BjVAo4%2B1wmHkZv9zd8shmVGBpBFYHg7E%2BTfDN86sT6a2cX6GM2CWdFSjCd%2F1i1vixugqFm2O9eB0V%2F%2Fbrp7WSRSeAo38AjTeFqbsVyXq%2BV3G3ycF%2BZLgd%2BuWN3ujiHvx62h24kEDyZgt8QzTGdl9ElGaz1WI3ifNPUAx%2FYnNuKnqvCOAmBRfLBNL1FZ5uEOL%2Fp99rfaewJbZD87loR9OY33fHDBhRXjYMt7u7oR15yyumr%7Ctkp%3ABk9SR9bRvPWqYg

Very often they come in shaving sets. Check these carefully, for there is often pure gold inside!

A timeless classic vintage, highly loved here and their resale value in the US will appreciate. Effortless efficient daily drivers. Just the sweetest shavers.

Good luck.
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These are my mildest razors and what I have experience with. Left to right aluminum handle super speed, ball in Tech Schick Krona, Wilkinson Sword classic, and later travel Tech. Out of all of them I'd have to say for vintage I like the Schick Korona, and as for new manufacturer I really like the Wilkinson Sword classic razor very mild but very efficient.
The Simple Clean Shave razor is very mild yet efficient. You can be pretty much mindless and still get a good shave. Machined from aluminum with stainless steel inserts. It runs about $50. The Razor Company also sells it as their house razor and it can sometimes be gotten from them for less during sales.

The Game Changer .68 is mentioned a few times. I have the open comb version and it's a great razor. The regular one should be even smoother.
I will second the Gamechanger 0.68.

If you look at the Merkur 34c, try and discover whether the version you liked was made with the old tooling (up until about 5-6 years ago) or the new tooling (looks similar, but the razor is milder and no longer has a brass thread post).

The de89 clone you tried may have been more aggressive than an actual de89. You should try the original if possible - you can just buy the head only for very little money.

Incidentally, have you tried just shaving the tiny stragglers under the nose with sideways strokes? I have many razors and have no problem getting under the nose with any of them, including things with large heads like GEM razors, by using a little sideways stroke on each side of the septum. I have to do this to hit those spots just under the nostrils and this seems to be the only way to do it - size of the razor head isn't really a factor.
I will third the Game Changer .68. Great razor but not too aggressive.


I shaved a fortune
My face has a few bumps I have to watch when I shave. My skin isn't sensitive to the razor blade itself... but to soaps, croaps and creams with a scent. I can't seem to use scented soaps without a reaction so I've found a few unscented soaps that all work well.

I didn't have good luck with the Overlander but so many people do. I'm the outlier, I think. I would say if I was looking for a mild but efficient razor, based on my limited experience, I can say the ESC/Alpha Shaving Claymore Evolution or the Blutt BR-1 0.86 DE razors would be my choice. I don't know if those are considered "Boutique razors" or not... They don't fit into the less expensive genre, but they are readily available and can be used daily for people with sensitive skin.... again, based on my limited experience.
There are many razors that might possibly work like my favorite Canadian prewar Tech, flare tip Superspeed, or Schick Krona for starters.

Couldn't you just use two of the razors you already have good experience with in combination? Shave everything with the Rockwell #2. Do a clean up pass using the Razorock Old Type or SLOC. I've found the SLOC to be great at dealing with the chin and mustache areas.
I've been using the RR German 37 slant for a week now, and frankly I really like it. I can actually shave first thing in the morning and again in the evening the same day without irritating my skin. I don't get the longevity of shave my Lupo's deliver, but it is noticeably milder to my skin, allowing as much cleanup/buffing as I care to employ.



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