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Which is best for a first timer: Vintage vs New

I hope I'm not opening a can of worms here, but which is best for a newbie.

I am just getting ready to start wet shaving, so not even a newbie for another week or so. I like the idea of a mid 50's Gillette Super Speed, but am wondering if it would be better to start with a Merkur 34c or something similar like a lot of people seem to suggest.

I asked the same thing on another forum, I'm just trying to get a range of opinions to base my choice on. I have a feeling I will be going the vintage route within a few months, no matter what I start with.

Any idea or suggestions?
 
You can't go wrong either way. Don't let yourself get hung up on a million decisions, though. Flip a coin.

You can buy a 34c and a Super Speed and a handful of blades for less than a fifty dollar bill, and that's a great platform to start from that gives you the right tools for the job.
 
Welcome to B&B.

I would suggest that you enter Jason's very generous PIF here and perhaps be in a position to receive some free kit. As far as deciding between new and vintage razors is concerned... I have both and enjoy both but I believe that a vintage razor may well outlast a normal modern razor. Of course, if you wish to include expensive stainless steel razors, the answer may be different.

One of the great joys of older razors was that they were very inexpensive. Prices have risen, but they still provide good value and great shaving.
 
I would recommend getting both. Seriously. I am on my 2nd month of DE shaving, and I have 4 razors. A SS 57 Flare Tip, EJ89, RR Mission and a 46/49 Tech. I started with the EJ89, was great. A little mild, so I tried the RR Mission. My face did not like it, too aggressive for me. I then tried the SS 57 it was a little too aggressive for me. Then I used the Tech, was great.

This trial and error has occurred over a 30 shave period with the EJ89 being used 80% of the time. When I got 4-5 good shaves with the EJ89, I put the same make of blade (new one) in one of the others and tried them for 1 to 2 shaves to compare.

Long story short, everyone has a razor aggression level they like, and until you try a couple, its hard to tell what you will like. Well, unless you get a nice adjustable but that is a whol'nother thread.

If money is tight, get 1 soap (FYI that was hard for me to write), 1 brush, 1 AS and get the 34c and a Tech. Between those 2, you will get a great idea of what type of razor you will like. Have a Great One!
 
I am about 5 weeks in and you cant go wrong either way, I have new style DE Razors and a couple of old Gillette models, I am finding that I am leaning more towards the vintage razors they deliver a great shave and its like using a little piece of shaving history.
 
Welcome to B&B.

I would suggest that you enter Jason's very generous PIF here and perhaps be in a position to receive some free kit. As far as deciding between new and vintage razors is concerned... I have both and enjoy both but I believe that a vintage razor may well outlast a normal modern razor. Of course, if you wish to include expensive stainless steel razors, the answer may be different.

One of the great joys of older razors was that they were very inexpensive. Prices have risen, but they still provide good value and great shaving.
I agree with David. I have been shaving with what some folks call vintage razors (Gillette FB and Slim) - except I bought them new more than 50 years ago! I also have modern razors including a number of stainless steel ones.

What I found is that my preferences in razors have changed over the years. For most of the years that I have been shaving, I preferred adjustable razors. In the past few years, my preferred razors have been slant razors.

When you are starting out, I believe technique is more important than whether you start with a modern or vintage razor. Pick whatever appeals to you, master that razor, and then go on from there.
 
Welcome to B&B.

I would suggest that you enter Jason's very generous PIF here and perhaps be in a position to receive some free kit. As far as deciding between new and vintage razors is concerned... I have both and enjoy both but I believe that a vintage razor may well outlast a normal modern razor. Of course, if you wish to include expensive stainless steel razors, the answer may be different.

One of the great joys of older razors was that they were very inexpensive. Prices have risen, but they still provide good value and great shaving.
Thank you. I definitely entered that great PIF. I never win things like that, but it looks like it's tailored for me.


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All of the replies make me think I'll end up with both relatively quickly regardless :)


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I like the idea of a mid 50's Gillette Super Speed, but am wondering if it would be better to start with a Merkur 34c or something similar like a lot of people seem to suggest.
I think start with which ever you can secure first. The vintage item may take a bit of time to secure a reasonable condition model whereas you could have the 34C within a week.
 
There is no 'best' IMHO! Vintage and new are both good! You should try some of each.

That said, my standard recommendation is to start with a Merkur 34HD or one of the EJ89 series. Just my $0.02!
 
Both will yield very satisfying results. Can't go wrong with a 34HD, However, there is something about using a razor that is closing in on 100 years old that gives you the chills!
 
I think it's a matter of preference and doesn't make any difference. It's really your technique which you will have to hone as you continue to shave and you would have to do that with either a new or a vintage.
 
You can't go wrong with either, but since you think you may want to try vintage later, may as well jump in now, IMO. 1950s Super Speeds are great razors, but avoid the Red Tip model for now. It's more aggressive. Enjoy your shaves!
 
You can't go wrong with either, but since you think you may want to try vintage later, may as well jump in now, IMO. 1950s Super Speeds are great razors, but avoid the Red Tip model for now. It's more aggressive. Enjoy your shaves!
Thanks. If my understanding is correct, the blue tip is mild, red is more aggressive, and silver is somewhere in between? I'm sure someone will correct that if I'm wrong.


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I started off with a qshave butterfly which I didn't like so I returned it but currently I have the z3 gillette super speed and a gillette slim h2. Currently I don't have a modern razor. But I do love what I currently have
 
Thanks. If my understanding is correct, the blue tip is mild, red is more aggressive, and silver is somewhere in between? I'm sure someone will correct that if I'm wrong.


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You are correct, sir! A plain flare tip or a 40's style no date code are good, as is almost any Gillette Tech.
 
Thanks. If my understanding is correct, the blue tip is mild, red is more aggressive, and silver is somewhere in between? I'm sure someone will correct that if I'm wrong.
You are correct. I have a Red Tip, which is considerably more aggressive the '54 1940s style Super Speed I recently purchased (the '40s style has a skinnier handle). I pulled the trigger on the Red Tip because it is my birth year and quarter, but in retrospect I would have been better off at the time getting a silver tipped one. It took some time for me to master the more aggressive model.
 
Get a superspeed (and/)or a tech. After you've got a little experience, if you don't like it (them) you can always sell it (them) again.
 
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