Ask yourself the following questions:
(a) How often do you wet-shave your face/head/legs?
(b) How many shaves on average do you get from each razor?
If your answers are (a) 3-5 times a week and (b) around 4 to 7 times with the same blade and you are male, you fall into the average usage category. As you would expect, the lifetime of a razor blade varies according to the conditions it is subject to. If you are female and you only shave your legs/bikini line, the usage will be less frequent and blades will last longer. However if your hairs are darker and thicker, your blades will need to be changed more frequently. Either way, it would benefit everyone if there were a way to extend the life of the average shaving razor.
Wet-shave preparation etiquette
It is now known that dry human hair has been found to have the same toughness as copper of the same thickness. Therefore those who do not allow the hair to soften sufficiently before shaving run the risk of damaging their razor prematurely. All it takes is a hot towel, or a few minutes of steam/hot water contact before you begin to shave. Similarly, those who do not lubricate the hair at all before shaving are allowing unnecessary drag which is both uncomfortable for the user and damaging to the razor. Applying a small amount of gel/foam/oil will allow the razor to glide smoothly, reducing the effort required and avoiding microscopic deformities of the razors edge.
After debris from your own skin and hair, the most hostile element to your razor is, believe it or not - water. Those that live in a hard-water area will notice that it is more difficult to produce a good lather from soap products. This is because the mineral heavy water reacts with the foaming agents, meaning you will need a higher concentration of soap than those in a soft water region. Furthermore, when hard water dries, the minerals form a scale that can create an irregularities in the shape of the razor blade and even erode it over time.
Those who live in soft water area's are still at risk from the one thing water does best when its has prolonged contact with metal - oxidization (or rust). Unless you thoroughly dry your razor after you shave, or take measures to protect it from a damp atmosphere, it will rust. The rust that occurs on a razor blade its not the same aggressive kind that you see on nails left out in the rain, it's microscopic. But like the lime-scale caused by hard water , it can create distortions in the shape of the blade which can cause excessive drag and even cut your skin.
How to prolong the life of your razor
Now that we understand the causes of razor deterioration, the solution to razor longevity is simple. Eliminate all microscopic debris and water from the blade, and keep it in a moisture-free environment. For the first part, I have found the ideal product. The Razorpit Razor Blade Sharpener is a simple piece of kit that removes micro-debris from your razor and sharpens it at the same time. Made from recycled materials, the Razorpit Razor Blade Sharpener is not only ecological, its economical too. The makers claim it can extend the life of your razor up to 150 shaves. You will be saving money and saving the planet by cutting down on wasted disposable razors and cartridges.
Watch this short video to see how it works.
After you have cleaned and sharpened your razor, it is important to remove any traces of water and ensure it remains moisture free. I have heard stories of people using hair-dryers and fans for this, but just shaking it well, blowing on it and blotting with a towel can do the same job. There are liquid solutions on the market that require you to store the razor submerged in an alcohol or oil solution. Please comment below and share your experiences if you have used any of those products. Finally one last piece of advice, I would advise against storing your razor in the bathroom. Bathrooms are moisture rich environments that encourage rust and scale to form on metals. If you absolutely have to keep it in the bathroom, store it in a container with a rubber seal, or a sealed zip-bag away from any running water sources.
See below for more information and to purchase the Razorpit Razor Blade Sharpener.
Razorpit Razor Blade Sharpener (UK)
Razorpit Razor Blade Sharpener
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Razorpit Razor Blade Sharpener (USA)
RazorPit Men's Razor Blade Sharpener, Black
Sale Price: $9.93
You save: $5.21 (34%)
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18 new from $9.93