Today we’re taking a look at the best straight razors. Every man has his own needs, so stay tuned for our review of seven different models at a variety of price points.
If you aren’t seasoned in the straight razor shaving business, you might be apprehensive about jumping in for many reasons. First off, the name “cut-throat razor” isn’t particularly friendly, and people have conjured up images of severed jugulars and near decapitation experiences.
Sure, a cut-throat razor can kill you. But only if you swallow it. So if you aren’t the kind to wear your beard with honor, the only real pain is in finding a good straight razor.View in gallery
Be warned; there are some really scandalous gadgets in the market masquerading as straight razors and a multitude of mediocre ones that will mess your morning. Don’t fret because we’ve done the sieving for you. But how can you determine which straight razor is right for you?
What to Consider When Buying a Straight Razor
While the straight razor has retained its good old charm, there are lots of designs out there. As you would expect, razors aren’t created equal; some are exceptional, while others will frustrate you either from their sheer inefficiency or third-rate craftsmanship.
The following are some things you must think about before making your purchase.
Fixed Blade vs. Replaceable Blade
The traditional razor came with a blade that you had to keep for life. Today, shavettes allow you to change the blades as you like.
While some shavettes will require you to stick to certain blades, there are those that are compatible with almost anything that you throw in.
This means that you have the freedom of using what works best for you without having to buy different razors. Of course, traditional blades will give a better shave. And you never have to spend your hard-earned cash buying replacement blades.
Ease of Maintenance
Straight razors will require a little more maintenance than shavettes. Once a replaceable blade starts getting blunt, you just throw it away and fit in another one.
With a straight razor, you have to keep the blade in good shape because it’s all you got. This means regular honing and meticulous storage.
Stainless Steel vs. Carbon Steel
Stainless steel is respected because it looks good, does not corrode and is tough. When pitted against carbon steel, it requires less maintenance and comes at a more affordable price point.
Carbon steel, on the other hand, has higher carbon content and can thus be ground to be extremely sharp. This means that you get a really close shave.
But then, you will have to sharpen your razor more frequently because carbon steel will not hold the edge for long. You also have to keep an eye on it to prevent rusting.
With straight razors, there’s something for everyone. If what you are looking for is just something to get the job done without spending much, you are better off looking for a shavette.
Even with less than $20, you can get something that works. But it’s a different story when it comes to straight razors. Traditional blades can cost a pretty penny, especially if you are looking at more sophisticated items.
The 7 Best Straight Razors (Our Picks)
Are you ready for the best shave of your life? But you must be able to keep a secret because the gentleman’s club has limited admission. Read now, the best straight razors of 2021–for your eyes only.
1. Feather SS Japanese Straight Razor
When it comes to straight razors, you must learn the right technique, maintenance, and a few other things before you can claim your chair at the table of men.
And this is where the Feather SS Japanese Straight Razor comes in. It isn’t a hardcore straight razor; it’s a middle ground between a safety razor and a straight razor. However, Feather knows their razors because they have been at it since 1932. They manage to produce outstanding quality, even while keeping prices at entry-level.
You will love this razor’s design because it mimics the classic straight razor, only that it comes with the convenience of disposable blades. This means that no honing or other maintenance will be required. You just fix a new blade, and you are ready to roll. And it’s quite safe to replace blades thanks to a spring-mounted mechanism.
Did we mention that you get a really nice non-slip handle with this shavette? This means that you will have the confidence to shave as close to the skin as possible. And you don’t have to worry about hygiene because it can be easily dismantled for a thorough cleaning.
Unfortunately, the Feather SS Japanese Straight Razor does not come with blades. You have to buy these separately.
2. A.P. Donovan Straight Razor Set
Once in a while, life throws good things our way, and that is what the A.P. Donovan Straight Razor Set is. You see, getting started with straight razors isn’t easy. First, you have to overcome the fear of getting this dangerous-looking blade anywhere near your face.
Secondly, you must be prepared to spend a little more. Good quality razors don’t come cheap, as you will learn. Then, you must furnish thyself with shave brushes, shaving creams and a host of other paraphernalia.
This A.P. Donovan kit comes fully equipped. In addition to the high-quality carbon steel blade that is fixed to an exquisite mahogany handle, you get a package that has it all: a badger hair shaving brush, a fragrant shaving cream from A.P. Donovan, and a leather honing strop to boot.
All this comes in an ornate wooden box, making it an ideal gift for straight razor aficionados.
This blade has a nice feel on the hand and is well balanced to make shaving a pleasant experience. The high-grade Japanese steel alloy used here allows for a very sharp blade that will trim any hedge. Unfortunately, it won’t come shave-ready, and you might have to hone the blade before every use.
3. Classic Samurai CS-102 Stainless Steel Barber Straight Edge Razor
If you are looking for a straight razor that’s real value for money, you will find it in the Classic Samurai CS-102. Admittedly, this is another budget razor, but it is still more expensive than your average shavette–and a lot cooler.
First off, hats off for the badass name. Samurai means warrior in Japanese, and just like the fabled fighters of legend this no-frills shavette never misses a hit and will endure for many moons. This is all thanks to its robust stainless steel construction.
This is a simple razor. You won’t be getting a lot of bells and whistles, but it gets the job done effectively without a lot of effort. No honing or anything of that sort; you just change blades. And you don’t have to stick to a certain brand of blades; you are free to experiment and see what works best for you.
The all-stainless construction ensures that your razor won’t rust. It also gives this tool some good weight which feels intuitive on the hand. You won’t get a premium razor here but a tool that works. And you can buy it with pocket change.
4. DOVO Shavette Straight Razor
Anyone who talks about straight razors without mentioning DOVO isn’t on the level. And the Dovo Shavette Straight Razor is worth a mention because it comes at a decent price point, yet rivals higher-end models in style and quality of build.
A razor that costs less than $50 won’t give you the prestige of a $300 model, but this one gets things done even though you don’t get the fanfare. You also don’t have to keep honing the blade or worrying about corrosion because it utilizes replaceable blades.
You will be getting two different blade holders here to allow you to experiment with different blades. Yes, you might call the DOVO Shavette a learner’s blade; but it’s a neat razor that comes with a stainless steel handle and will last long.
5. Morrama Black Angle Razor KitView in gallery
If you ever want to gift yourself a straight razor that is as chic as hell, pick the Morrama Black Angle Razor Kit. If looks do kill, this one would be deadly. It jumps out of the box looking like something from the future; be ready for flawless aluminum complete with a brass pin all clad in black! A matching stand that is slip-resistant rounds out the ergonomics of this black beauty.
If you are a person who appreciates beauty with your eyes closed (aren’t the most beautiful things felt and not seen?), you’ll fall head over heels for this straight razor because it feels great on the hand. It’s like an appendage you never had!
This isn’t a shaggy dog story because the Morrama Black Angle is an award-winning razor. In 2019, GQ actually recognized it as one of the best razors a man can buy. It’s made by a London manufacturer, so it might come with a fancy accent too.
6. Thiers-Issard Black 5/8″ Blade Point Straight Razor
If you don’t jump with common spirits, it is truly understandable. The world is full of mediocre, and the straight razor industry hasn’t been spared. It’s a shame because straight razors have been produced since the late 1600’s and yet bad elements prevail. But not the Black 5/8″ Blade Point Straight Razor.
You have to take this razor seriously because it has been handmade by Thiers-Issard, and the company has been making straight razors since 1884. Evidently, the French know more than just growing moustaches. The sheer excellence in craftsmanship that has gone into this razor is sure to wow you.
Maybe it’s the English Sheffield Silver Steel they use or their old fashioned way of making straight razors, but you get an insanely sharp blade. It will hold an edge over stainless steel razors but, admittedly, will require more maintenance.
They throw in a well-crafted handle to give you a proper grip as you work. This is a tool that every gentleman should possess.
7. Straight Razor by DiscommonView in gallery
Some people want the best of the best, and it a burden that many distinguished gentlemen bear. But if you wear your weaknesses like armor, with pride, then you are worthy of the Straight Razor by Discommon.
Have your money right because nothing good comes cheap, but we can vouch that you’ll get your money’s worth here. Admittedly, for close to $1000, you could expect to get a lot of bells and whistles. Hell, it could even come with an alarm, so you don’t miss shaving time! But nothing of that sort here–just a premium straight razor that you will pass down generations with pride.
But you won’t just be getting a trophy because this is the best a straight razor can get. Picture the feel of meticulously machined aerospace-grade aluminum in your hands. And there’s more to the handle; a micro-textured finish that will enhance your grip giving you the ultimate control of your tool at all times.
The 6/8″ blade is a masterpiece and is built to perfection. How about being triple tempered and surface ground to ensure that you get the very best in straightness and sharpness? And it bears a hardness of 62-63 HRC, meaning that it is in it for the long haul. Needless to say, this is not a run-of-the-mill-blade. You can say that again because the custom blade profile is crafted by Hart Steel to create a seamless blend with the handle.
What you get is a razor that looks and feels too good to be true. And it comes ready for business; no warm-up required. Just get it out of the box and straight to your face.
Best or Nothing for Your Straight Razor
While these aren’t the only good straight razors on the market today, it is evidence enough that good razors do exist.
And it doesn’t matter what your budget looks like.
There’s something at every price point
For example, the Classic Samurai CS-102 razor is as cheap as they get and does a really good job without faking it. But money can buy exquisiteness and style and exclusivity, and that is what you get with the Straight Razor by Discommon. It may break the bank, but it is worth its weight in gold. Most people start from the bottom but if your means allow, pick this without a second thought.
These are our picks for the best straight razors on the market, did we get it right? Have any straight razor recommendations we absolutely must try? Sound off in a comment below!