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What Are The Differences In Razor Blades?-West Coast Shaving

What Are The Differences In Razor Blades?

Razor Blades - Are There Differences?

As you begin your wet shaving journey, one of the first elements to consider is the razor blade. Believe it or not, this thin piece of metal can make or break your experience in classic shaving. West Coast Shaving got its start helping wet shavers with this important initial step in perfecting your shave by creating and selling razor blade sample packs. Depending on your razor (closed/open comb head, etc), skin/hair type (coarse/sensitive), and frequency of shaving, the razor blade you need for a smooth shave can vary greatly.  

In this Shaving 101 video, Aviv and Jared test a few common blades to show you the difference between razor blades that are considered aggressive and mild.  For the purposes of this video, Jared shaved with two extremes: feather (very aggressive) and derby (very mild). But he has grouped a number of popular razor blades into three groupings of blade types.


  • Feather
  • Bic
  • Crystal


  • Astra
  • Wilkinson
  • Personna
  • 7’o clocks


  • Derby
  • Nacet
  • Merkur
  • Shark
  • Lord
  • Treet 
  • Dorco


Razor Blade Attributes

In addition to the division into aggressive, medium, and mild, there are other razor blade attributes to consider. 

Coating: Many stainless steel razor blades are coated with platinum, chromium, teflon or other materials. These coating can reduce friction or resistance and create a smoother glide, resulting in a different shave even though it might be the same sharpness as a similar blade.

Hardware: Which razor you are using can also affect the efficiency of your shave. You might like a mild razor blade in your open comb or slant head razor, as these tend to be more aggressive razors. But if you are using a closed comb, you might be able to handle a more aggressive razor blade. Jared tried this mild Derby blade in an open comb razor to get it through his tough stubble.

Jared’s Take Away: For his experience level, technique, and hair, Jared appreciated the efficiency of the Feather. While he was surprised that he did get a good shave (without tugging) from the Derby, he just found that the Feather gave him a closer, better shave. He could use less pressure with the Feather and get a lower-profile, smoother, closer shave. Remember that the same blade in a different razor can give markedly different results. Experiment and find what combination works best for you. And don’t be afraid to revisit blades in different razors, you might fall in love with something new. 

What is your favorite combination? Which razor blades work best for you? Disagree with our  categorization? Share your experience and let us know in the comments below.

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Squillace Richard - June 7, 2021

I use the Merkur 38C with a Wilkinson sword blade
And a Merkur slant with a Wilkinson for clean up.
The feather blade does not work well for me in these razors. To aggressive for me.
Derby’s are pretty good and Gillette ultra blue they would be my next blade of choice at this point in my shaving journey

George - April 23, 2021

I use a Gillette slim adjustable 1962 model… Have switched from cartridge razors about 2 years ago.
Have tried many blade brands. Astra was my “go to” for quite a while. I can use wilkinson …. as I remember my father used, but Astra seemed to do a better job.
I tried Feather and really liked them, but still not the
“Goldilocks” “just right” feel…. then I tried Voshkod blades …. wow. I use these blades on a setting “5” on my Gillette adjustable…. close shave, no irritation… amazing… 3-4 shaves per blade and I renew. I could go 6-7 but after 4 I like the new blade. … I don’t know if its the teflon coating … or what… just works for me.

Justin M - July 29, 2020

I have coarse hair around my chin and can’t seem to get a shave without some drag in that area. I recently had great success with a Personna platinum blade and the Merkur 25C open comb.

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