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What is the most convenient type of razor and why?

Convenience has different meanings for different people. For the OP taking care of a straight is convenient. For me it was a time suck. I found it far too easy to geek out on keeping that perfect edge. For others the amount of time spent changing a DE blade makes it less convenient than using an injector. For many, shopping is inconvenient. I do not find online shopping inconvenient. I get two weeks or more from a blade. So the amount of time spent each day on shopping and changing blades is quite small. However, in the end what makes me decide what to use is simply what provides, overall, the most pleasant shave: hot water, good scents, comfortable shave, smooth result. Ergo, I like a puck of hard soap, a badger brush suited to face lathering, a DE with a proven blade, and a light but bracing and ephemeral aftershave, all employed in a process taking about seven minutes.
 
"What is your most used method of shaving and why?"

SR shaving.

Why?
  • Because I'm scarred when I shave with a razor where I can't see the blade's edge on my skin.
  • I get the closest most comfortable shave.
  • I get no skin irritation or damage.
  • Shaving becomes an enjoyable ritual (including the 1 to 2 minutes each shave for maintenance) that calms me for the day.
  • Women find it a very masculine way for their man to shave.
 
Surely either electric or cartridge razors must be the convenient options. Not electric for me, though - for my hair getting even a half-acceptable electric shave takes a lot longer than a full wet shave.

DE / SE razors aren’t far behind for convenience. I simply don’t buy the argument that buying blades is inconvenient - just buy a thousand and they will take up far less space than honing stones, lapping stones, strops, etc.

Straight razor shaving must be the least convenient of all - unless the alternative is to use tweezers to pull out hairs one at a time. But then isn’t this part of the appeal? One can take pleasure in the rituals and practices of SR shaving and it doesn’t need to be quick or convenient. But honing a razor, maintaining the edge, lapping stones, making balsa strops, applying polishing pastes, learning and perfecting over years all the skills required, learning to shave well, storing all this stuff, keeping everything clean and dry…convenience isn’t the word. Inconvenience is the word, and that’s fine.

If the OP is making the point that a single shave with a shave-ready straight razor can be simple and fuss-free, once a person has learned how to do it, then ok. But that isn’t the whole story by far.

This has been an interesting thread so far.

Maybe I am the black sheep here, but I have two stones and one strop. And they don't take up that much more room than a pack of 100 blades. I don't have balsa strops or compounds, etc. I guess if I was chasing the most refined, sharpest edge humanly possible I made need that stuff, but from a utilitarian standpoint I don't think it's all required to use a razor.

I also find it very interesting how a tool that had been around for hundreds of years, is considered obsolete and dangerous by so many people. Safety razors have been around a little over 100 years, and electric less than that. I get that safety razors were more convenient than dragging a stone and strop into the trenches of WW1, but for the average guy at home what does that matter. I also consider the safety razor as the equivalent to putting a guard on a table saw. It may help prevent serious injury, but carelessness can still get you in trouble.

I guess I just found it interesting that having a tool that requires a little care was taken over by another tool that has disposable parts and is considered "convenient". I guess convenient means something different to everyone.

Thanks for your input!
 
I think you make good points there, JBird. Perhaps convenience is the wrong word. I would guess most people who get into SR shaving do so for the challenge, and also the purity and simplicity of at least the shaving part. It’s another way of getting back to the analog, manual way of doing things. Less convenient, less easy, less instant gratification, it requires some skill and practice, but it gives us more control and more connection with the activity. And, eventually, for those who master the skills, a superior result.

In a sense, I think they are eschewing convenience for the truer experience of the real thing.
 
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I think you make good points there, JBird. Perhaps convenience is the wrong word. I would guess most people who get into SR shaving do so for the challenge, and also the purity and simplicity of at least the shaving part. It’s another way of getting back to the analog, manual way of doing things. Less convenient, less easy, less instant gratification, it requires some skill and practice, but it gives us more control and more connection with the activity. And, eventually, for those who master the skills, a superior result.

In a sense, I think they are eschewing convenience for the truer experience of the real thing.

You're right. Convenience is the wrong word.

I was confusing the self reliance aspect of straight razors with convenience. My point being that with a few basic supplies and skill you can get potentially get a lifetime of service without further investment.
 

steveclarkus

Goose Poop Connoisseur
I'm saying straight. Yes, I mean straight razor.

Razor, strop, stone. That is all that is needed to maintain this razor for years, besides a little oil on the blade.

As for time, yes, stropping and honing takes time. But stropping doesn't take that long. Heck, honing doesn't even take THAT long if touching up an edge. Besides, how long does it take to run to the pharmacy to get a new pack of cartridges because you swear you put them on the shopping list for the grocery store? How long does it take to order packs of blades online, enter shipping, billing, credit card info, and then wait for it to arrive?

As far as cuts, I cut myself less with a straight than a DE. I believe this is because I can control the angle and can see what the edge is doing.

Also, how much is an adjustable DE? I can buy a vintage straight for a fraction of the price and the angle is infinitely adjustable.

Did I mention less skin irritation too? I don't use pre shave balm or oils, just a hot shower before hand.

And the only environmental waste I create is soap scum and an occasional aftershave bottle. I order replacement pucks for my sterling soap containers.

Where the straight lacks is in travel. But even then it's not that big of a deal to pack a strop and straight, but a little case and a single tuck of blades has the advantage there.

We all have different lifestyles and definitions of convenience though. To me maintaining a blade is more enjoyable than having to run to the store or order new ones online. What razor do you think is most convenient and why?
Well put! When I travel, which is rare these days, I just pack a shavette - problem solved.
 
I'm saying straight. Yes, I mean straight razor.

Razor, strop, stone. That is all that is needed to maintain this razor for years, besides a little oil on the blade.
....

I am very similar but once I have a SR to my shave-ready standard, all I need is razor, strop and a 0.1μm diamond pasted balsa strop (to maintain the edge for life). The balsa is much lighter than a stone.
 
I haven't used a straight in years but when I did I found that it took time to keep a razor sufficiently sharp. The first step was to hone the razor. I found that I had to hone the razor once a month. It took me at least 30 minutes to hone the razor from start to finish. In addition, it took me some time how to learn to hone it properly. I ended up getting sour straight razors and brought one to a barbershop to have it honed properly.

Stropping, however, was a daily chore. The strop I had had two sides one that was rough and one that was smooth. I stopped my straight 40 times on each side and that took me at least five minutes since I was careful not to nick the strop.

In contrast, inserting a new blade in a DE takes me all of 10 seconds.
 

JCinPA

The Lather Maestro
I haven't used a straight in years but when I did I found that it took time to keep a razor sufficiently sharp. The first step was to hone the razor. I found that I had to hone the razor once a month. It took me at least 30 minutes to hone the razor from start to finish. In addition, it took me some time how to learn to hone it properly. I ended up getting sour straight razors and brought one to a barbershop to have it honed properly.

Stropping, however, was a daily chore. The strop I had had two sides one that was rough and one that was smooth. I stopped my straight 40 times on each side and that took me at least five minutes since I was careful not to nick the strop.

In contrast, inserting a new blade in a DE takes me all of 10 seconds.


Glad you guys like the SR, but life's too short for this. I'm not going to waste time finding and quoting my reloading ammo analogy (posted elsewhere about SR shaving), but I find reloading a fun hobby in and of itself. But I never, ever argue to another shooter that it is "more convenient" than buying ammo and just going to the range and shooting it.

Semantics, schemantics. But words matter. You guys are just trying too hard.
 
Given many of the qualifiers, it seems to me that a Rolls Razor might be considered the most convenient. Razor, hone, and strop all in one package. The edge is visible against the skin and the angle is variable much like a straight. The handle stands away from the blade, much like a safety razor, making the blade more visible than a straight.

On the other hand, I have a couple hundred blades on hand for my DE razors, so I rarely need to run to the store for one.
I do enjoy the contemplative aspect of honing my straights to a fine edge, but i find daily stropping tedious.
The Rolls Razor requires assembly/disassembly for each shave, due to the stropping mechanism, so I don't use it as much as a DE.

So, ya pays your money and ya picks your poison...what you prefer is what you prefer.
 

FarmerTan

FarmerStan the Man
Actually..... This morning I shaved with the most convenient razor: the one "at hand!"

I was running late, so I grabbed my Krona loaded up with a 7 o'clock and grabbed my handy mirror and shaved in the shower.

So that is the best answer for me for ease of use/convenience: the one that is readily available.
 
Drove reeeealy close to there a couple of times on the way to Wisconsin. LOL, I'd drive 1,000 miles outta my way to avoid Chicago. Unless it's really late. Then Chicago is a ghost town.

As a Wisconsinite I can confirm that Chicago should be avoided. What's just as bad is Illinois people driving up north for the weekend. They are always in a rush and drive like jackwagons. Swerving in and out of lanes, cutting people off. This isn't the big city fella. Calm down
 
I’m with @Jbird45 on the simplicity and convenience of the straight razor.

Not nicking myself is convenient.
No steptic pencils or alum blocks.
No cleaning the blade after ever stroke.
Never clogging the razor.
Never changing the blade.
No disassembling the razor to dry.
No cleaning stubble from the side of the sink.
No blade disposal worries.
No batteries to charge.
Never run out of blades.
No buffing.
No checking for missed bits.

A few daily laps on leather and a couple laps on a finishing stone once a week is a small price to pay for the comfort and convenience.
 

FarmerTan

FarmerStan the Man
As a Wisconsinite I can confirm that Chicago should be avoided. What's just as bad is Illinois people driving up north for the weekend. They are always in a rush and drive like jackwagons. Swerving in and out of lanes, cutting people off. This isn't the big city fella. Calm down
You have opened up mine eyes! Often when I am passed on the e-way by the folks headed "Up North" I get angry. They are probably just Deetroit folks used to the free way being a parking lot. I need to cut them some slack, mentally.

My big problem is having any sympathy for them when I see the road rage stuff going on. People DIE over that. I can't imagine living with myself if I caused someone to die because my pride got hurt.
 
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