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I have always used a Gillette Atra, which has worked well for me, and have never been interested in any of those new expensive fancy razors. Now, the Atra blades are getting more difficult to get, and I was afraid I was going to have to “upgrade” to a new 5-blade “system” paying $2-$3 per blade. I’m very seriously interested in getting one of these Merkur shavers but have no idea where to start.

Just so you know, I have very think facial hair (I’m Italian) and I keep a short beard that I trim with an electric razor every week. I usually wet shave my neck and the top part of my beard every other day. Can you tell me which shaver model you would recommend and which blades? Actually, I don’t really know the difference between the safety razor, double edged, single edged, etc. So I’m really just trying to get more info so I can make a good choice.

Honestly, the more traditional razor is right up my alley and I can’t wait to get started. I just don’t know where to start. Can you help or at least possibly send me a couple of resources that I could use to reference?

For a safety razor, the Merkur Heavy Duty (HD) and the new Edwin Jaggar razors (DE87, DE89L) are probably the best-built popular razors out there right now. The Edwin Jaggar DE89L in particular has been getting a lot of buzz in the traditional shaving community lately. A less expensive possible alternative might be a Weishi razor: they’re not quite as well-built as the Merkur’s and Edwin Jaggar’s but they have a reputation as a “gentle” and “forgiving” razor that is good for the beginner.

No matter what razor you get, definitely try a variety of blade brands. There’s some interaction between the razor, the blade, and your skin so it definitely pays to do a little experimentation to find the combination(s) that work best best for you.


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

2 thoughts on “Razors?”

  1. I have coarse hair that grows fast and shaving-sensitive skin, a bad combination to say the least. I’ve only used one razor, the Edwin Jagger DE89. Still experimenting with blades, but the razor is very aggressive on hair but gentle on my neck, which is the most sensitive part of my shave. It’s inexpensive at about $35 and it feels solidly built, probably will last the rest of my life with almost daily use. I highly recommend it. As for blades, I’ve had good results with Shark Stainless and excellent results with Crystals. I will definitely be buying the Crystals again. Great razor-blade combination. Hope you get good products and great shaves.

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