quite a while ago I received an email from Proshave.dk, a Danish vendor of
shaving equipment, with the subject: ”Fancy testing a Razorpit?”
lot of thoughts went through my mind, of which most probably were fit for
a horror movie.
I had only heard of Razorpit in connection with cartridge razors, I think
it was understandable that I thought I was asked to test the Razorpit in
connection with a cartridge razor, and the shave snob in me only had one
resounding answer: “No thanks!”
was however somewhat surprised when I realised that the question actually
was a bit different, it actually was if it was possible to use a Razorpit
in connection with a DE razor?
short consideration, I thought it sounded as a quite interesting question
and so I accepted the “challenge” and agreed to test the Razorpit with
was with some curiosity, I received the Razorpit, got it unpacked,
examined and read the instructions – the latter is usually only
something I do, if all else fails, but in this case I felt that it was the
appropriate thing to do.
is not much to it; a rubber plate that has to have some foam/lather
applied to it, after which the (cartridge) razor is pushed across the
plate 4 times, rinsed and put in place.
must be honest and admit that I have seen the Razorpit more as a
promotional stunt rather than something that actually works as described.
It is developed for the cartridge razor, but that it should be possible to
get "up to 150 shaves" with the same blade sounds too good to be
true, and "up to" can mean anything from 10 to 150, and if you
only get ten? Well, in that case the investment does not correlate to the
outcome in my opinion.
minimize the amount of variables I chose to use the same razor and the
of blades throughout the experiment.
razor I chose to use for the experiment was a Gillette Fat Handled Tech
(1938-1942) and I selected it for two reasons:
It is my absolute favourite razor, and if I were to be in company with the
same razor for a long time, it had to be good and one I would not get
It is a mild razor that gives a very good feedback, and it was important
in an experiment like this.
chose to use the Derby Extra blade for the experiment, because it is an
easily accessible, popular and good all-round blade.
blades used in the experiment came from the same package, again to make
any variations as small as possible.
finally, with some biased scepticism, I went along with the test, and to
do it as comparable and fair as possible, I started with a control. The
control consisted of a fresh Derby Extra blade, which I used until it felt
worn. The blade was not removed from the razor after the shave; the razor
was simply rinsed under the hot tap and then put in its place.
shaves throughout the experiment has been four passes; WTG, WTG, XTG and
my control, I achieved 36 shaves before the blade was worn. It was
surprisingly many I had expected somewhere between five and ten, but at
least I had a starting point.
the control shave a new blade was put in the razor and the shaving process
repeated, with the only difference that the razors head after the shave
was pushed over the lathered up Razorpit four times for each side, rinsed
under the hot tap and set into its place.
had to practice a little, so the blades edges actually came into contact
with the rubber surface, the safety bar and rounding of the head can make
it a little difficult to obtain a good contact, the Razorpit is designed
for a cartridge razor, which is flat.
have found it difficult to establish a success criterion for something I
do not know what I can expect from, but in my view, it would be if I could
achieve an improvement of at least 25% with the Razorpit than without it.
Since I got 36 shaves in my control, my goal would be to reach 45 in order
to be able to say that there was an improvement.
to around 30 shaves, the feeling was normal, even though I could feel that
the blade wasn’t entirely new any longer. When I reached around 40
shaves, it seemed as if the blade began to deteriorate, and I just waited
for it to go off soon, but around the 45th – 46th
to my surprise I got a completely comfortable BBS.
made me analyze the past few shaves, and I concluded that the lather in
the previous shaves had not been “on the money", which had the
effect that the blade was worn. For the next shaves, I was very aware that
the lather was as perfect as possible, and it resulted in close,
comfortable and problem free shaves.
I reached around the 60 shaves, I could not quite believe it, I almost
thought it was a lie, but as I had plotted all the shaves in a spreadsheet
from the start of the challenge there was nothing wrong, the figures spoke
I reached about 80 shaves, I could clearly feel that the blade wasn’t
super sharp anymore; it didn’t shave quite as close as earlier, but it
was still by no means uncomfortable, and I discovered that by using
"The Gillette Glide" technique, I could achieve a minimum of a
DFS each time. In addition, when I used a soap/cream with a good glide and
got a perfect lather a BBS was still just achievable (including
I reached around the 90-92 shaves, I would probably have scrapped the
blade under normal circumstances because it felt quite tired. It required
quite some touch-up work to get a close shave, and I could definitely feel
the blade was worn, but as I was so close to the 100 mark I thought it
could be fun to try and reach that number – without the shaves becoming
uncomfortable in any way, it just took some more work.
100 shaves, the blade finally gave up and I must say that it almost
deserves to be put on display, because 100 shaves with the same blade is
ended the experiment with yet another control shave, where the razor this
time was rinsed in cold water after use. In this control shave, I got 23
shaves out of the blade.
question was; “Does Razorpit work on a DE razor?”
short answer is; “Yes.”
is really nothing more to say.
test clearly shows that the life span on a blade can be improved
considerably – I got an improvement of 64 and 77 more shaves or
expressed in percent; an improvement of 178 % and 334 %.
Test results must of course be taken with the reservation that another
person most likely will come to a different result when it comes to the
number of shaves. Some will probably get fewer shaves and some perhaps
more than I have achieved, but I am totally convinced that regardless of
who tries the Razorpit, they will be able to extend the life of a DE-blade
compared to normal use.
to if the Razorpit is worth the investment (money + time), I will leave
for the individual to assess.
have read a theory that says that the blade will last longer in a mild
razor than in an aggressive one.
have never really been wondering whether this could be true, but with this
experiment behind me, it could be fun to choose an aggressive razor (open
comb) and repeat the experiment with that.
the blade is more exposed in an open razor, it should be a little more
easy to use on the Razorpit, and if nothing else it should be
correspondingly obvious if the theory holds water – but for now I think
I will give my straights a little love, they have been neglected for quite
some time ;o)
the Razorpit, I had an interesting discovery as the control shaves quite
clearly shows that a blade rinsed in hot water has a longer life span than
a blade rinsed in cold water.
of the blades supports this statement as it is obvious that the build-up
of scum happens faster on the blade rinsed in cold water.
when I look at the blade that made it through 100 shaves, I can almost be
surprised it could shave at all in the end.
the top down it is:
exposed to Razorpit
left photo show the top of the blade and the right the bottom (as inserted
in the razor).
Control, cold water
Control, hot water
Blade exposed to Razorpit
Same order as above - looking at the edge
And a little from above