During the past twelve months a number of DE safety razors have started to appear on the market that are manufactured in India, it would certainly seem that they are all coming out of the same factory.
These razors are manufactured in both open and closed comb (safety bar versions) and with several different designs of handle in different lengths and diameters. The open comb and the safety bar head however appear to be identical on all of them.
These razors are marketed in the USA by The Italian Barber under the RazoRock label, by Razor Blades and More under the Matador Label and by Shave a Buck under the Cadet label.
Nearer to home Barbiere di Figaro in Holland sell them under the Pearl badge and now in the UK they are being sold also under the Pearl label by Safety Razors.co.uk who are based in South Shields.
Safety Razors.co.uk are retailing these razors at £9.95 plus postage and offer TSR members a 10% discount making this razor £11.91 delivered. The same open comb head is offered with six different types of handle varying in length diameter and weight.
The model I purchased is the SSH-1 I choose this model as it had a shorter and fatter traditional style of handle which I both prefer and I am more familiar with.
The razor weighs 72 grams on my digital kitchen scales 44 grams of this total being the handle. The handle on this model is 79 mm long and 12 mm in diameter. Other models have longer and slimmer handles.
The razor appears to be made entirely from brass and is chrome plated, the quality of the plating is good to very good, not in the same class as Muhle/Edwin Jagger but as good as, if not slightly better than Merkur. The general standard of machining and finishing is very good, only the base of the screw on the top cap is poorly finished with tool marks apparent where it has been cut off.
I should at the outset declare myself as a dedicated user of SE razors and this was my first DE shave for several months. My favourite DE razor has been a ‘New’ head on any handle a little thicker than the standard one, so this razor perfectly fits that ‘style’.
For the test I choose an Astra (green pkt.) blade simply as a blade I am very familiar with and consider a good average blade, for lather I choose Spieck stick as again I am used to it and consider it a fantastic soap. I wanted to introduce nothing strange so the test would be mainly about the razor (minus my lack of DE technique)
I found the balance of the razor just about perfect and the grip and diameter of the handle perfection. The razor was moderately aggressive about the same as a ‘New’ or slightly more, but light years less than an R41, all of the aggression was completely usable and I did not find it in the slightest bit tricky or difficult to shave with in any way. It is not a particularly angle sensitive razor. I unfortunately am unable to compare it to a Fatip as I have never used one.
I completed a normal three pass shave with no nicks or weepers and no feeling of having been ‘scraped’. The finish was ultra smooth.
The only negative point is that the top cap screw stud is 10mm long which is about double that on most three piece razors, the extra length serves no purpose at all that I can see other than prevent the head being used on most of my other handles. I suspect the thread rate is the same but most other handles are simply not threaded deep enough. This is a minor point as I consider the handle supplied as just fine and it will also fit on just about any other head you have.
A super razor in terms of both function and value. For those that like a slightly more aggressive open comb razor this is a seriously good performer.
I have no connection with Safety Razors.co.uk, and in fact had not heard of them until alerted to them and this razor on this forum. I purchased this razor, it was not a ‘freebie gift/tester’.