Monday, June 29, 2015

Lifehack Protip - Razorblades

Ok let's face it, razors are incredibly expensive and you need to replace them way too often.  I'd go out on a limb and say that razors are one of the most expensive toiletry item that a guy (or gal) needs.  The average pack of blades from Gillette is approaching $19, I chose Gillette as they are the number one brand in the US with almost 80% of the market share.  That and the fact that my personal preference is the Mach 3.  I know it always irks me when I need to buy new blades and the amount of work it takes to actually get someone to open the cabinet so I can actually buy them.  Apparently I'm not the only one given the number of commercials I see these days mocking this practice.  Of course, this is obviously the bi-product of a whole lot of people using their five fingered discount in the past.
So how do you know when it is time to actually change your blade?  Some people go by the moisture strip, others do it monthly, while still others just do it when they think they aren't getting as good a shave as they have in the past.  Knowing that razor blades are expensive one must ask how long does a Mach 3 blade actually last?  It turns out according to Gillette that it should be about five weeks. For those of us that use the moisture strip as the timetable to change blades we are likely seeing those blades go a whole lot faster than five weeks.  So how can we extend the life of a razor to make sure that we aren't buying replacement blades a few times a year.  After all this is a blog about frugality and making things last longer.

First and foremost, always dry your blades after you shower.  Think about it, your face sure as heck isn't going to wear down a piece of sharp steel.  Water degrades the quality of blades over time, causing them to start to rust and thus performing poorer.  If you dry your blades you will drastically extend the life of your blade.  To put this in perspective, I have a blade on my Mach 3 that is from 2014 and it is still going strong.  I highly recommend that you dry you blades after every use.  Some frugal extremists go as far as using a hair dryer after after shave.  A little more work than I'm willin to put into it, but some people swear by it.

Now what happens when that blade is just starting to wear out a it more than drying it after each shave can combat?  Try going against the razor on a pair of jeans.  Over time your blades get micro bends and pits on themselves and jeans make a surprisingly good way to fix them.  The denim will effectively fix these small imperfections and revert the blades back to where they should be.  You can even knock out two birds with one stone by keeping some old denim as your drying cloth.  What's important here is to go at least twenty times against the blades on a fairly regular basis.   This will extend your blade life exponentially.

What tips do you have to make your razors last just a little longer?

and for those of us who remember SNL in the 90s, a fun little link to the Gillette 3000!


  1. I just wrote an article about how I switched from traditional cartridge blades to the good old fashioned double edge razor blades. The same way my grandfather used to shave. It costs pennies per blade and gives just as good a shave as any cartridge blade. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thanks for posting! I like the idea of the old fashioned blade, but am not hand steady enough to use them. I use the cartridges more because they are dummy proofed for people like me. 😉