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Beluga Razor – Another Crowdfunded Project

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beluga razor
[Updated July, 2017.  This appears to be a dead project, there has been no communication about it for some time.]
[NOTE: A video review of this razor is coming shortly.  I will edit this post with the video when it is ready.]
Who says double edge razors are boring?  Hot on the heels of Rockwell Razor’s astonishingly successful Kickstarter project–they raised over 10 times their pledge goal–comes another crowdfunding razor project, the Beluga razor.  The Beluga razor attempts to be “the best of both worlds” with a double edge razor (with a single edge exposed) that uses a pivoting head like a modern cartridge razor.  I was lucky enough to get to shave with the prototype a few times.

Beluga Beginnings

Zac Wertz is an Attorney from Cincinnati, Ohio with an MBA and a background in Finance.   He says:

“Most people don’t realize the amazing experience of shaving with a single edge, mainly because of the large learning curve typically associated with them (unless they just aren’t aware).  [T]he Beluga Razor virtually eliminates this learning curve, thanks to its pivoting neck, so you can shave with ease for the first time ever.  If you can use a Gillette Razor; you can use the Beluga Razor the same way.

“A pivoting neck is a simple and easy solution to make single edge shaving incredibly easy for the first time.  With the Beluga Razor we wanted your razor to have a high degree of pivot, but we recognized from the beginning that the pivot point would be the weakest feature. Accordingly, we spent a lot of time to make it one of the strongest features possible so it can help you reach those hard to reach areas and eliminate excessive pressure.

“With the Beluga Razor we designed our handle to be a little bit larger and longer than usual to provide a nice and relaxing shave, but still retain the versatility to use multiple hand positions with ease and greater comfort.  The handle material that was carefully selected is Linen Micarta. Linen Micarta is a premium plastic used by many premium knife handle makers because it is extremely durable and actually creates a better grip when wet. Known as the “Cadillac of Plastics”, the feel of this handle is truly unique, and just like the razor, it must be used to truly appreciate. The feel is warm and organic, and over time it will even darken with age to represent the generations of use you will get out of it.  Each colored batch of Micarta is unique and will vary overtime, making your razor truly unique.  The handle colors available are tuxedo black, hunter green, and maroon.”

Zac is seeking patent protection for this razor design.

But How Does It Shave?

The Beluga razor prototype I tried felt unlike any other razor–traditional or modern–I have ever used.  The handle really does feel “warm and organic” and the razor as a whole feels solid and hefty in the hand.  If you have used a modern cartridge razor with a pivot using the Beluga will be familiar–though I do not think I can say it is exactly the same hand-hold.  For me there was a definite “sweet spot” hand position for the pivot to do its best job.  And resting the blade side on the skin is unlike using a traditional safety razor–since you rest the entire “face” of the razor on the skin there is perhaps less tactile feedback than you might expect.  The design of the head also makes “detail work” like leveling sideburns a little different as well due to the way the blade is mounted: the razor has little guide notches on each side that show where the blade edge is.
The Beluga razor really shined for me when I had thick, multi-day stubble.  The razor just plowed through it like it wasn’t even there.  A “normal” shave was excellent as well, with the pivot making consistent reduction no matter where I was shaving, thanks to the pivot.  The only challenge was under the nose, where the fairly large head made detail work a little more difficult (but certainly do-able! I just needed to adjust my technique a bit).  I suspect that the head on the production razor will be smaller.
The Beluga razor represents some genuinely innovative design elements and deserves the attention it has received.  Take a look at their crowdfunding page to see their current status.


Shave tutor and co-founder of sharpologist. I have been advocating old-school shaving for over 20 years and have been featured in major media outlets including The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and Lifehacker. Also check out my content on Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!View Author posts

13 thoughts on “Beluga Razor – Another Crowdfunded Project”

    1. I can’t say. The Beluga razor is still in development and I only shaved a few times with an early prototype. The design has changed since I tried it.

  1. I really like the idea of Beluga.
    The only thing is the price,
    I think 99$ + some international shipping fee would be a good price point.

  2. I must say I find this a very interesting development and I hope it will do well. It is obviously early days yet but, considering the broader picture, perhaps we are seeing a shift of paradigm along the lines of “Less is more”. In only a year we have seen at least three novel developments which work along the lines of a single or double edge coupled with innovative and durable design: Bornsharp, Rockwell and now Beluga. I find this a breath of fresh air compared to the still dominant mainstream which only seems to offer more blades, thicker lubrastrips and more microfins wrapped up in a device that looks more and more like a cheap toy than a shaving implement.

  3. The Beluga seems like a very interesting concept, and one that should be a much better alternative than standard cartridge razors. However, my concern would be with the pivoting head. Correct me if I’m wrong, but for the pivoting head to work, the user would be required to add extra pressure on their face while shaving, correct (similar to the pivoting heads in current cartridge razors)?

    1. Hey Rick,
      Zac here from Beluga. I was just waiting in case someone else wanted to answer this, but I’ll be happy to answer your question. A lot of cartridge razor users are known to apply to much pressure to the skin, but that is not because of the pivoting neck and more an issue of the lightweight materials. When the product is so lightweight you tend to want to press harder for what you think is proper contact (and it ends up being too much). With our Beluga Razor it is heavily weighted so one doesn’t find the need to press down as hard (just let the weight of the head do its thing) and the pivoting neck is mainly there to just help maintain a consistent contact with the skins surface to deliver a very consistent shave. With the Beluga Razor the only thing you will then concentrate on is how much pressure is applied and the pivoting neck makes this even easier, thus really you have greater control over the pressure in my opinion.

  4. Nice write-up of an innovative design.
    I have a Linen Micarta razor handle, made by Cooncat Bob. I don’t know what “warm and organic” means, but the handle is pleasant to use. It’s lightweight but solid, grippable and not at all plasticky feeling.
    I have two questions:
    1. Is the pivot spring-loaded so that it pops upward? If so, the tension seems critical to safety and effectiveness. What can you tell us about this aspect of the design?
    2. To insert a DE blade, do you split it and insert one half in the head, or do you insert the whole blade with one edge exposed and reverse it when the exposed edge becomes dull?

    1. Hi, based on a video on its Kickstarter page (about 2/3rds down), it looks like you take off the bottom portion of the head to insert the entire double edge blade. When one side of the blade dulls, flip it to the other side. I change blades after every three shaves so I’d have to chose between flipping after one shave and pay more for blades, flip in the middle of my second shave and agh no, or flip after two shaves and deal with a duller blade. Not sure what I’m going to do yet but I did back the project and am looking forward to receiving it.

    2. Bob,
      Warm because it’s not cold like a steel handle would be.
      Organic because it almost feels like a natural and organic material like wood.
      1. As to the spring rate, yes this is a very critical aspect of the design and is an area we have put a lot of thought and effort into to come to an effective solution. Not sure what you mean by pops upward, you can see a gif image of it pivoting on the Kickstarter page.
      2. Already answered by James.

      1. Thanks, Zac.
        Flipping the DE blade makes sense to me. I should have viewed the video before posting.
        By “pops upward,” I was referring to the spring action. At rest, the head is in its highest position, and, when the user moves the head along his face, the head is pushed down, right? What happens in an upward stroke? Is the tension on the spring adjustable by the user? Does changing the angle of the handle in effect adjust this tension?

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