Shave of the day 30th September 2022

Razor: Gillette Single Ring

Blade: Astra Green

Brush: Vie-Long #12705B

Pre-Shave: Proraso Pre Shave Cream

Lather: Sample – Geo F Trumper Rose Shaving Cream

Aftershave: B&M Reserve Classic

Additional Care: Alum Block

Last day pf my Sample September, and my stock of aamples have been severly reduced. Which is great, considering that was one of my goals with this exercise.

Shave of the day 28th September 2022

Razor: Gillette Single Ring

Blade: Astra Green

Brush: Vie-Long #14033

Pre-Shave: Proraso Pre Shave Cream

Lather: Sample Dr Harris & Co Ltd Almond Shaving Cream

Aftershave: Sample – B&M Reserve Cool

Additional Care: Alum Block

Nearing the end of my Sample September, and nearing the end of my lather samples too. Todays aftershave sample was blue enough to leave stains in the sink.

The ideal razor

From time to time I wonder what the ideal razor would be.

Ideal for me. that is. I harbour no illusions that I know what is the best razor for every shaver. Quite to the contrary, I do believe that there is no such thing as a razor that fits everyone – so I am very wary of any company, Kickstarter, or person who claim to have come up with the One True Razor.

Tangent aside, let us consider what m ideal razor would be like. To do that, we need to look about what I like. and why.

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Razor and loading device therefor

Or as we know this patent today; the genesis of the Schick Injector type D and onwards. And unlike a lot of the patents I riff on, this one not only made it into production, but is alive and well. And expired, so anyone can copy the razor and loading device therefor found in this patent. The patent relates to:

…a combined razor and magazine which are separable to enable the razor to be used for shaving apart from the magazine.

From US patrent 1,969,945

Or, in simpler terms, an injector as we know and love them1 today. And in contrast to the older type A, B and C razors,2 which had the magazine in the handle.

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Reciprocating single edge roller razor

Some of you may recall the King Oscillator and the Rotary King razors I wrote about a while back. But King wasn’t the first – or the last – to propose a reciprocating razor. Almost a decade before King got his patents, Robert Taylor got a patent for a safety razor. A safety razor where the act of shaving made the blade reciprocate. Or as the US patent office helpfully classify it:

B26B21/36 Safety razors with one or more blades arranged transversely to the handle of the type carrying rollers with provision for reciprocating the blade

As a side note the blade moving sideways or vibrating is an idea that just won’t die, even if it ought to be well known that a razor is not a saw. To me the idea of sawing the blade is pointless – it would be better to keep the blade sharp.

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Shave of the day 16th September 2022

Razor: Merkur (?) NOS Bakelite Slant

Blade: Shark Super Chrome

Brush: Artesania Romera Manchurian Badger, imitation horn

Pre-Shave: Proraso Pre Shave Cream

Lather: Sample – Truefitt & Hill Sandalwood Shaving Cream

Aftershave: Sample – Saponificio Varesino Cubebe

Additional Care: Alum Block

Sample September is half done, and I’ve been enjoying it a lot so far.

Tut’ankhamūn’s razor-box

Humans have shaved since – I strongly suspect – we were able to make a sharp edge. Some years back I posted about bronze age razors. Quite a few more years before back Egyptologist Howard Carter discovered the tomb of Tut’ankhamūn, an Egyptian pharaoh from the late bronze age. More importantly for us, Carter discovered Tut’ankhamūn’s razor-box as well as a few razors among the contents of the tomb.

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Fingerspitzengefühl razor

Fingerspitzengefühl [ˈfɪŋɐˌʃpɪtsənɡəˌfyːl] is a German term, literally meaning “finger tips feeling” and meaning intuitive flair or instinct, which has been adopted by the English language as a loanword. And what can be more intuitive than running your fingers over your face? At least that seems to have been the logic of James D Millar, who was granted a patent on a fingerspitzengefühl razor in 1910.

Millard’s razor can be described as lacking a handle, like the better known Gronbech razors1 do. But like the later, it does have a handle – just not a normal one.

The razor is interesting in it’s own right too. With a more normal handle, it could have done well. Or perhaps not – competition was fierce in the early days of safety razors.

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