More men are ditching their disposable razors and taking their shaving routine seriously by choosing wet shaving with a safety razor or any single-edge razor over dry shaving. But, aside from enjoying the benefits of a traditional shave, why are safety razors better?
- Dry and Wet Shaving: The Difference
- Why Is Shaving With A Safety Razor Better?
- Tips On Shaving With A Safety Razor
- How To Choose A Safety Razor
- Single Edge Vs. Double-Edge Safety Razors
Dry and Wet Shaving: The Difference
Global estimates show that about 75% of men shave daily, with about 85% preferring a wet shave over a dry shave.1 As more men turn to wet shaving, they are also abandoning the usual disposable cartridges or electric razors in favor of traditional razors. They believe that wet shaving tools, like safety and straight razors, provide a closer and better shave.
A wet shave refers to the traditional way of shaving, which uses a shaving brush and soap to keep facial hairs wet. It usually involves a traditional straight razor, but sometimes men opt for the more convenient modern safety razor. In a dry shave, on the other hand, you don't use water or shaving cream; instead, you use an electric razor or a disposable plastic razor with a lubrication strip to shave directly on your skin.2
Why Is Shaving With A Safety Razor Better?
A safety razor is a shaving tool with a protective guard, so the razor blade can't come into direct contact with the skin.3 This makes it safer to shave with and separates it from an electric or disposable plastic razor.
But, aside from their functional and safety advantages, are safety razors better, and is there a benefit to using them when it comes to the quality of the shave? The answer is yes.
Safety razors are better than multi-blade cartridge razors and disposable razors because they are cost-effective, built to last, have better-quality blades, offer a safer and more precise shave, and are better for the environment.
Multi-blade razors are cheap because they are disposable. But if you’re going to buy it more frequently, it’s going to cost you more in the long run.4
A safety razor, meanwhile, might be expensive as a one-time buy. Still, you don’t need to buy another one for a long time since the safety razor handle is made of durable material—usually metal, which you can use for years. The only thing you'll need to replace on a regular basis is the razor blade.
Built to last
Safety razor blades are affordable and last longer than cartridge and disposable razor blades. Experts always say that if you’re using disposable cartridge razors, you must regularly change razor blades every three to four uses or more if properly maintained.5 This is also true for double-edged safety razors since you have two edges that you can use one after the other.
In terms of the blade's quality, more blades do not mean better. A safety razor’s blade is much sharper than a multi-blade razor since it’s generally made of superior steel.6 These sharp blades make for fewer passes, resulting in a more effortless and smoother shave.
Safer and more precise shave
Shaving with a safety razor, despite the blade’s sharpness, is also safer.
The safety guard limits the number of blades the skin is exposed to when shaving.7 This greatly reduces the risk of nicks, cuts, and skin irritation and guarantees a smooth shave. That is why the safety razor, in general, is the best razor for your skin next to a straight razor and if you want to save money.
One of the most common complaints against multi-blade razors is that they give inconsistent shaves.8 With safety razors, you will no longer have to worry about this.
The safety razor’s design lifts the facial hair and slices it off at a point slightly below the skin surface. And since double-edged safety razors do not have pivoting shaving heads, you only need to apply shorter strokes for a cleaner shave. Doing so prevents shaving nicks, which is a common complaint with disposables. This consistent closeness protects your skin from ingrown hairs, razor burn, and razor bumps.
Most safety razors have metal parts, and you rarely see plastic in their construction. It may be a minute detail for some, but its manufacturing and disposal process significantly affect the environment.
Disposable and cartridge razors are not biodegradable. Their blades will rust away over decades or centuries, leaving just the plastic handle and housing.9 On the other hand, safety razor blades are made from a single metal sheet, so they can easily be recycled. Since they’re made of metal, you reduce your plastic footprint, thus saving the environment from further plastic pollution.
Easier to use
Safety razor blades are easier to use compared to traditional straight razors because of their familiar design. Unlike learning how to use a straight razor, wherein you have to balance the scales and the blade, you can similarly grip onto a safety razor as you would a cartridge razor. But do note that you have to mind the pressure while shaving with DE razors, as their blades are much sharper than those in cartridges and disposable razors.
Ultimately, safety razor blades are a great choice if you want to get a closer shave while still enjoying the familiarity and convenience of other razors. It is perfect for getting started with wet shaving or for those who want to experience a closer shave without the intimidation of a straight razor.
Tips On Wet Shaving With A Safety Razor
Finding the correct technique can make all the difference in getting a close, comfortable safety razor shave.10 Here are some tips to get the most out of your wet shaving experience with a safety razor:
Use less pressure
Don’t push a safety razor down your beard or skin when shaving as if you are using other razors. Applying a lot of pressure on a safety razor while shaving will result in skin irritation or bleeding. To be on the safe side, you should let the blade slide gently across your face by applying light pressure.
Shave at an angle of 30 degrees
It’s what experts recommend. Shaving at a 30-degree angle would easily cut facial hairs close to the skin without any nick. As a rule of thumb, always shave in light strokes following the direction of the hair growth.
Wet shave and never dry shave
Use a high-quality pre-shave oil or gel, and make a lather with a high-quality shaving soap while shaving with a safety razor. Wet shaving reduces the friction on the razor and skin, allowing the razor to glide more effectively and giving you a close shave while protecting your skin.
Replace blades every two weeks
Regularly replacing blades ensures that you always have sharp blades to give you a better shave. To get optimum results, learn how often you should replace razor blades. But, if you frequently shave, replace them every five to seven shaves.
Brush up on modern shaving techniques
It’s never too late to learn new wet shaving tricks. Each man’s wet shaving experience is different, and it’s always good to share what works and does not work for you so that others can improve their shaving experience. Shaving is a communal experience; share the experience, dude!
How To Choose A Safety Razor
You wouldn’t truly understand what makes a safety razor shave superior if you do not have the right tool. It is important to carefully choose your safety razor's head, handle, and blade type to find the most beginner-friendly safety razor.
A safety razor’s head should fit your expertise, hair, and skin type. The handle should be standard or between three and four inches for better stability. Lastly, choose a safety razor that has easily accessible replacement blades. The best safety razor for a beginner would be a closed-comb safety razor or an adjustable double-edge safety razor.
Single-Edge Vs. Double-Edge Safety Razor
When comparing single-edge vs. double-edge safety razors,11 there is no doubt that both provide a great shave. Single-edge is excellent for beginners because they require less pressure and are easier to maneuver. Meanwhile, double-edge razors offer more of a close shave and may be more suitable for experienced shavers who want a barber-style shave.
Whichever razor you choose, you can find the best safety razors from trusted brands here at Naked Armor. With one of our safety razor kits, like the Bleoberis Safety Razor Kit, you can enjoy a complete wet shaving experience. It has a razor stand, a beginner-friendly closed-comb 3-pc zinc copper alloy safety razor, a matching shaving bowl, and shaving soap. Add to Cart below:
More Naked Armor Reads:
- C. David. Shaving Statistics. Chris David Product Design. https://chrisdavid95.wordpress.com/2015/10/19/shaving-statistics/. Octobre 19, 2015
- C. Wholen. How To Dry Shave Like A Pro. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/dry-shaving. October 30, 2020
- Safety Razor Definition & Meaning. Merriam Webster. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/safety%20razor
- C. Bryant. Is a reusable razor or a disposable razor really cheaper in the long run? Health How Stuff Works. https://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/beauty/hair-removal/reusable-or-disposable-razor.htm
- Tips + Tools For Shaving With A Safety Razor. The Grooming Lounge. https://www.groominglounge.com/pages/shaving-double-edged-razors
- B. Jones. Double Edge Razor Blades: The Different Types And How To Choose. The Personal Barber. https://www.thepersonalbarber.com/blogs/guides/double-edge-razor-blades-the-different-types-and-how-to-choose. July 27, 2021
- How Safety Razor Is Made. Made How. http://www.madehow.com/Volume-5/Safety-Razor.html
- Inconsistent Shaves. The Shave Den. https://theshaveden.com/forums/threads/inconsistent-shaves.65119/
- How To Recycle Razor Blades-Shave The Planet. Grown Man Shave. https://grownmanshave.com/blogs/grown-man-shave-society-articles/shave-the-planet-how-to-recycle-razor-blades
- The Beginner’s Guide To Shaving With A Double Edge Safety Razor. Grown Man Shave. https://grownmanshave.com/blogs/grown-man-shave-society-articles/the-beginners-guide-to-shaving-with-a-double-edge-safety-razor
- The Difference Between A Single & A Double Edged Blade. Oishya. https://oishya.com/journal/difference-single-double-edged-blade/