Razors.click – a website and a resource

As some of you might have noticed, I like patents for old razors and related accoutrements. Like enough to have many, many posts about them. Enough to self publish a book about them. And more than enough to appreciate the work behind a site like razors.click.

Razors.click is a site mostly about razor patents. It have some added bonuses like a handful of inventor biographies, a few articles on razor related subjects, and short how-to’s on how to make your own wedge blade and taking 360° images. The main focus is on patents though, and where I will show of a patent and either snark on some of the odd details or ramble about the things I like, razors.click lays out the patent in a clear, readable format with interactive drawings.

Razors.click is a good resource for anyone who likes old razors and engineering. Personally I would enjoy seeing more shaving related accoutrements – brushes and bowls – but it is a great resource both for research and relaxation. Go check it out.

Shaving patents, advertisements, history, oddities, reviews, book, and more…

Just a reminder; if you enjoy reading my snarky commentary on old shaving related patents, old (and some newer) advertisements, shaving history and other shaving related oddities… I have collected the vast majority of links on a separate page here on my blog.

I also have a page that acts as a very basic introduction to the various styles of safety razors for those who are new to the hobby, and a page where I got almost all of the reviews I’ve done over the years collected.

And if you enjoyed my writing on patents, I have also committed a book you can read offline that is available both on Kindle and as a paperback.

Tatara Masamune – a review

As I mentioned a little while ago I was lucky enough to receive a open comb Tatara Masamune stainless razor as a gift from Tatara Razors, and – as the ones who have kept track of my SOTD posts will know – used it continuously for three weeks with three different blades. Given that experience, and some time to think, what follows is my opinions and review.

Continue reading

Review of Pereira Shavery’s Baron’s Choice

As returning readers might recall, I have in the past reviewed several of the offerings from Pereira Shavery, a Portuguese maker of shaving soaps with activated charcoal and other shaving accoutrements. Recently I was lucky enough to receive a tub of Pereira Shavery’s latest soap; the Baron’s Choice. This soap is according to the letter I got with it intended as a less expensive soap than their awesome shaving soap with activated charcoal, the soap should be available for – and I quote the letter that came with the soap – “well below ten bucks”.

Continue reading

Reflections on my olive oil shave

The sharp eyed reader no doubt spotted my alternative choice of lather yesterday… and for those who didn’t, here is a reminder:

While it was a spur of the moment thing to do it yesterday – not enough coffee and all that – shaving with oil in general and olive oil in particular is something I’ve been pondering for quite a long time. The logic is reasonable simple:

  • Shave oil is a thing, and a lot of guys swear to using it.
  • A lot of shave oils are expensive and contains things that may be less than ideal to smear over ones face – double so when one risk a cut and getting it into the blood stream.
  • Buying a bottle of shave oil just to learn that one don’t enjoy it would be a waste.
  • Natural oils – olive oil in particular – have a long history for washing, and the Romans allegedly shaved with it too.

…and…

  • Shaving with olive oil seems to be a minor fad among – and I feel slightly filthy just for uttering the phrase – “beuty vloggers”, citing all kinds of dodgy factoids about health benefit and clearer skin.

So having tried it, what do I think about using olive oil for shaving? Well, here is my micro-revies of olive oil as a shave oil.
After applying it, and washing my hands so I could safely grip my razor, the shave itself wasn’t bad at all despite the complete lack of cushion. I got no cuts, nicks or razor burns. Uins olive oil certainly gave a much better result than shaving using just water, and better than I recall using regular bath soap too. And unlike the canned goo and gel I ditched years ago, my skin wasn’t dry or itchy afterwards.
One might think that smearing oil over the skin would result in clogged pores, zits and all sort of problems, I must report aht at least my ugly mug don’t have any of those right now.
Downsides were the somewhat messy sink and razorhead, but nothing that hot water and a soft wash cloth didn’t fix. My goatee was also pretty greasy from the oil running along my skin, but since I shave before my morning shower that was pretty much a non-issue – I have to wash lather out of my beard after shaving regardless.
Was the experiment a success, in that I proved to my own satisfaction that olive oil is a viable alternative if there is no proper lather around? Oh yes, and a better alternative in my opinion than plain water or bath soap.
Will I repeat the olive oil shave? Probably not unless I had to; the lack of cushion and having to wash my hands before reaching for the razor makes it way less than ideal in my eyes.
Olive oil. It works, so don’t knock it unless you’ve tried it. Probably works better for legs and armpits than a well chiseled face though 😛

Review of the Spearhead Case – a modern Khaki Kit

Bottom line up front? If you need a small, unobtrusive case for your razor and some blades, the only real competition to the Spearhead Case is the original Khaki Kit – and they are getting harder to find in good condition.
This short review requires a little bit of backstory.
A few years ago I bought one of the original US Army issue Khaki Kit via my favourite forum, and I’ve used ever since whenever I’m travelling either privately or for work. As such, it’s had showed up regularly in my Shave Of the Day, which is where a fellow shaver (Dennis, aka Ironbeard on twitter) spotted it and got interested in it.
In fact, he got interested enough to try to recreate it.
So much to my surprise and pleasure, he asked earlier this year if I would like one of his new cases. It arrived promptly and I’ve used it a fair bit the last few weeks, and I must say he got it pretty much spot on.

The case is about 5cm by 10cm – 2″ by 4″, same as the old Khaki Kit, and is of a more grey-green material than the old kit.

This is where I should have written a few paragraphs on how the new case is in use, but honestly there isn’t much to say.. it just works as intended, and takes almost no space in my GoBag – same as the old Khaki Kit. Simple, unobtrusive and reliable. Would easily fit in one of the pockets on my uniform if I needed to go really lightweight, although in such a case I might not have time to shave.
The old Khaki Kit was made from cotton weave, as was much of what we today would call the load bearing gear of the time. Keeping in the spirit of that, the Spearhead case is made from 1000D MilSpec nylon, much like modern load bearing gear is. The material certainly feels stronger than the old cotton do, but we’ll have to wait a century to see if it’s as durable as the original as well.

There is – apart from the materials – two noticeable changes from the old Khaki Kit to the modern Spearhead case: The straps for holding everything in is elastic bands instead of cotton straps, and there are two straps for holding the razor head instead of just one. Both changes are for the better; elastic straps means the case will hold a wider range of razors – and I suspect that Gillette would have used them in the original if they were cheaply available in 1917 – and the two straps keeps the head in much more securely since the threaded stud sticks up between the two bands, as can be seen in the photos
To me the Spearhead case is a perfect match for any shavers who wants or needs a convenient, neat, unobtrusive and reliable way to carry a three piece safety razor and a tuck of blades – be it military, law enforcement, first responders, blue collar or businessmen (or ladies; a safety razor works greats on legs too). If you carry your shaving gear, the Spearhead will keep it safe for you.
You can pick up one for yourself at spearheadshaving.com, for a quite reasonable price too, either by itself (25$) or along with a Parker 91R three piece razor (50$). Dennis don’t ship outside the US yet – international shipping is a hassle as I’m very well aware – but Maggard also stock the cases and will ship abroad. I would recommend buying direct from Dennis if you live in the US though, I’ve always preferred buying my supplies from as close to the source as I can.

For me the Spearhead case is a worthy heir to the Khaki Kit. It only took a century, but it turns out the best replacement is a recreation in modern materials… so now my original Khaki Kit will be reserved for more formal occasions and private travels, while the Spearhead Case will be on active duty.

Seven years and counting

I posted the very first post on this blog seven years ago today… it’s been fun, and as long as it keeps being fun I’ll keep at it. Thanks to all my readers, both my regulars and those who swing my now and then. I couldn’t done this without your interest in the fine art of wet shaving.

One of my favourite parts of writing this blog is when I got the time to deep dive into old patents and odd shaving gear and accessories – what I call Shaving Oddities – and I gathered all (or at least most) of those in a single page. If you have the time and inclination I suggest looking over them; there is quite a bit to learn and a fair number of chuckles to be had there.

I’ve also attempted to collect all of my reviews on a single page… I probably missed out a few here and there.

So again, to all my readers, thank you all for coming by and thank you all for inspiring me to keep having fun writing this blog.