I think it’s fair to say the Gillette “Toggle” razor is one of the most sought-after vintage razors, at least from the historical perspective. Now it looks like a new, artisan-made homage to the Toggle is on the horizon!
The Vintage Toggle Mystique
“The Gillette Super Adjustable aka “Toggle” has always been viewed as one of the wet shaving “grails” to both users and collectors alike. Its unique opening/closing mechanism, and limited production has turned the toggle into one of the most collectable razors of all time.”
The Janus Toggle
That curiosity and interest in the Gillette Toggle by the wet shaving community has inspired a licensed engineer and wet shaving enthusiast to re-imagine and re-created the Toggle razor into a “modern” product. A journey of over two years is about to come to a conclusion, with the imminent launch of the Janus Toggle DE razor.
From the Janus website:
“A legend makes a comeback in a thoughtful carry-forward design that still pays homage to the past.
Retro good looks, and old-school simplicity anchored in premium materials, new and unique user perspectives, advancements in computer aided design and engineering and modern manufacturing come together to add delight to the shaving experience.”
As you might expect from a limited-run, artisan-made razor, the Janus Toggle will not be inexpensive. Final price has yet to be worked out but I think it’s fair to say that this will be a multi-hundred-dollar (US) product.
Recently Eric, the owner of Janus Razors, contacted me asking if I would be interested in testing a prototype Janus Toggle for feedback purposes. Of course I would!
My Experience With The Janus Toggle Razor
Admittedly my time with the Janus Toggle was limited: I had a prototype for only a week or so. The production version will undoubtedly be “tweaked” to address the concerns the testers brought up. But I think I can comfortably make a few general comments.
This is a relatively large, heavy razor. However I think the balance is good.
The handle is smooth and would benefit from some knurling. The production model will probably have some kind of textured handle.
The adjustment dial is difficult to turn–but I’m told this will be corrected in the production version. The adjustment range is on the mild side (not a bad thing for me!). It became too aggressive for me only at the high end of the scale. It kind of reminded me of the Weishi Nostalgic Adjustable in that respect (see “Is The Adjustable Safety Razor Finally Catching On?” for my comments on the Weishi).
There is virtually zero “blade feel” for me when in use–I ran the razor over my skin and the stubble just sort of disappeared. Combined with a fairly forgiving blade angle range this razor gave me easy, excellent shaves!
Keep an eye out for updates on the Janus Toggle razor’s launch.