Find The Best Straight Razors In The UK
The straight razor, or the “cut-throat” as it is better known in the UK, has been around for years. In Barber shops across England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales, barbers have plied their trade, with the good old-fashioned cut-throat and a leather strop.
I remember my first shave with one of these some 30 years ago, and I have had many more since then.
If there is a better shave to be had, then I have yet to discover it. The hot towel, pre-shave oil, the warm cream and a skilled barber with a straight razor doing what they do best, and all finished off with the perfect sprinkling of after shave.
It truly is an experience that every man should try at least once in his lifetime. After all they have been doing this since as far back as 3,000 BC, so it is an age old tradition. Mind you, back then, they used initially sharpened bone before moving to copper.
At the Shaving Emporium we would recommend finding a barber in your own local area who offers such a traditional shaving service, and then go and give it a try. This type of experience also happens to make a wonderful gift idea for any man. We would recommend doing this before trying it on your own at home.
You need to get a good understanding of what to do before attempting this on your own. Here is a video below that shows how good the experience can be from beginning to end.
Video On How To Use A Straight Razor
In the early days, these blades would have been left open, which was fine in a barber shop, but far from ideal in the home. These blades are very sharp and with children around the home, they would have simply been too dangerous to have around.
Which Brands Make Straight Razors for the UK Market?
There are a number of brands and I have listed the most popular below:
- Shaving Factory
- Steel Salon
- Men Rock
- Edwin Jagger
- Shaving Shack
So as you can see there are a wide choice of brands to select from. You will find that there are two types available:
- Fixed blade
- Ones that use standard safety razor blades
The fixed blade means just that, and that is the type of blade that will need sharpened regularly by using a leather strop. This is the very traditional method. The other type of cut-throat razor has a holder, and you then insert a standard razor blade in to that. That means to change the blade, you simply have to change it. The bottom line is that both of these will give you a pretty amazing shave, and it then comes down if you want the ease of use by changing a blade, or prefer tradition and like the idea of sharpening a fixed blade.
We at the Emporium as you can imagine, are sticklers for tradition, but a few of our contributors use the separate blade option. Let’s have a look at some of the best straight razors, that you can actually buy in the UK.
The Dovo Range
This is the best known of the brands who make straight razors. Dovo are a German company based in Solingen, and have no doubt, their products are high quality. They make a whole range of quality products including hairdressing tools, scissors, manicure sets and razors of course.
The Dovo range of straight razors would be best known for their unique style. Set 5 different brands of these razors down on a table, and the Dovo one will be easy to pick out.
They have been around since 1906 and they do know what they are about. I have included one here as an example which is the Dovo Straight Razor 3 ounce is quite popular. Remember that style as you will not see it anywhere else.
We have done full reviews of the Dovo range of straight razors which you can read by clicking here.
The Parker Range
Straight razors can be as cheap as a few pounds and all they way up to a few hundred at the very high end of the market. The average prices though sits around the £15-25 mark for a decent quality.
Most Parker straight razors will sit at the lower end of this average. The one I have shown here is the Parker 31R Stainless Steel Straight Edge Razor which retails for under £15 in most places. you will find these still being used by many of the barbers throughout the UK.
So there is no questioning the quality and we think they are a great way of getting started, with straight razor shaving. You can read full reviews of their range of straight razors by clicking on this link.
The Bluebeard Range
They started first by producing a shaving cream and have gone on to produce other shaving products based on the success of their first few products. I have included one of their straight razors here known as the Bluebeards Revenge Shavette Razor which is priced at just under £10.
This one gets good reviews, but we have not tried this one out yet, so will reserve judgement until we have. You can read full reviews of their range by clicking here.
Those would be the most popular brands, and certainly the biggest selling brands of these types of razors in the UK.
Luxury Straight Razors
For those where money is no object, and I am sure there are not many, there are specific ultra high quality straight razors that cost a whole lot of money. At this end of the market a razor will set you back around £250. The Feather Artist Club, Damascus, Dovo, German Revisor, Executive Shaving all offer cut-throat razors at this type of price point.They are priced at this amount because of the high quality of metal used in the blade and also the material used in the handle. Here is an example from Dovo, which costs about £80. This one has a carbon steel blade and a handle made from cellidor. Cellidor is a fancy word for very hard plastic, which is very tough, glossy and is easily coloured.
This we think is a lot of money, but of course you get the quality. This is the type of blade that has to be sharpened after every shave to keep the blade in a state of super sharpness. This type of razor is for really serious shavers.
Fixed Blade Straight Razors Need A StropWe have mentioned several times about the use of a strop. We have done a separate article on those which you can read by clicking here. However we wanted to mention them briefly here, because if you decide to buy a fixed blade straight razor, then it will need to be kept sharp. The best way, and the only way we feel, is to use a strop.
These come in many different sizes and the quality varies a lot. So does the price. The one I have shown is one at the lower end of the price scale, but these go all the way up to some pretty serious money. They should always be made from leather. In days gone past in the UK, many teachers adapted these and actually used these for corporal punishment in schools. so apologies to the older men if this picture brings back painful memories.
Their proper use is of course to sharpen a cut-throat or straight razor.