View Full Version : Feather blades question
08-01-2008, 02:05 PM
So I've been using DE blades for a few years and settled into Derby Extra in my Merkur HD, but also occasionally use Merkur Super Platinum and Gillette blades. I started lurking here a couple months ago and saw Feather blades referenced pretty often. I picked up a pack and found them very irritating to my skin - and they increased my nicking from rarely to every shave. Do these blades have a reputation for being especially sharp? I have no problems going ATG with the blades I'm used to, but feel like my skin is being burned with I do with the Feathers. Have others had this experience?
08-01-2008, 02:15 PM
Feathers have the reputation for being pretty darn sharp & unforgiving. Some folks swear by 'em, others swear at them. Of course YMMV.
08-01-2008, 02:15 PM
Do these blades have a reputation for being especially sharp?
Yes they do! It's agreed upon that feather blades are the sharpest out there. Some people find them too irritating to use. I can use them daily but I have to take my time and pay close attention to not using any pressure or they give me burn and samurai slices.
08-01-2008, 02:16 PM
There is a whole thread about "corking" and particularly with regards to the Feather blades. Essentially using little pressure and dragging the blade through a cork or Styrofoam cup to smooth the edge.
08-01-2008, 02:22 PM
Heh, yeah, Feathers have that reputation for being "sharp as ninja assassins." Don't give up on them -- they're sharp and so you can get a great shave with fewer passes, and you might adjust your technique a little (blade angle makes a difference, e.g.).
I don't use Feathers for my daily mowing because of the expense (and some people, myself included, find they don't last but three shaves), and I'm working through a sampler pack, but Feathers are worth the trouble, in my opinion.
08-01-2008, 02:34 PM
Thanks for the confirmation guys. And thanks Alacrity59 for the reference to the corking thread. I found it and I think I'll give that trick a try.
08-01-2008, 08:27 PM
I use them every day with no problems. I change blades after 4 shaves.
08-01-2008, 09:59 PM
I use feathers daily with no regrets.
Every now and then I try another blade or three that is otherwise well regrarded here. For me nothing else seems to do... Feathers rock IMHO (ymmv).
08-01-2008, 11:12 PM
Well, I tried again this evening, after the corking trick, and that made quite a difference. I'm certainly not ready to give up on them ...
08-02-2008, 03:28 AM
Feathers for me are the ducks proverbial guts! I swear by them. I have a pretty hardy face, so YMMV of course.
For me, its three or four shaves per blade and then ditch it. I use my Tech and an Old Style Gillette in rotation, with preference to the Old Style. I find the pairing gives a BBS shave with little effort and as little as 2 passes [WTG + ATG] and maybe some touch-up. I find I can use a hefy amount of pressure [for a DE] and still not nick unless I run over a pimple or what-have-you. Generally I use very light pressure however.
My technique involves a shower or hot water face wash [water only] and then apply some shave oil. I then prepare my brush and face-lather. I fill my shave-mug with cold water and rinse the razor in there while shaving. I find this gives the best shave, the oil helping with spots that can be troublesome from time to time and giving a smoother shave with less irritation [like I said though, I usually shave fine no matter what as my face is near iron-clad...thank God].
Like j6ppc said above - you may find them to be the holy grail or you may think they are worse than a cheese grater.
Cheers - boingk
08-02-2008, 03:50 AM
Yes, Feathers are probably the sharpest Safety Razor ever made.
Has anyone heard of one that's sharper?
I can't use them. About every 6 months I give them another try and they are always just too sharp for me.
So I just keep a stash of them in a drawer, like WMDs that will be tested once in a while but never used.
But who says sharpness is what its all about anyway? This is the kind of thinking that actually led to the demise of the DE itself - always looking for something sharper, faster, more efficient, etc. I find Derbys and Merkurs to be the best, although I wouldn't mind trying those Gillette 7 O'Clock blades that I have heard are sharper than Derbys but not too sharp.
08-02-2008, 04:34 AM
I often get a bit of burn with feathers which I usually don't with other blades. I've never got really bad burn from them like you describe however. Blades are a personal thing - if you're not getting on very well with feathers try some other brand. Personally I like derbys best.
08-02-2008, 06:43 AM
Feather blades don't work well for me either in my Merkur HD. They are very harsh and unpleasant. I also use Derbys which I think are much smoother.
08-02-2008, 09:49 AM
I switched over to Feathers in my Slant and I won't go back to anything else in that razor. I didn't switch until I had my technique down after a couple of months. Since switching over, I've been bitten by the blade once (took a little chunk out of my neck). I can get 4 shaves out of a blade on average. Even though they are pricier than a lot of blades, a 50 pack of Feathers is still more cost effective than buying cartridges.
08-02-2008, 11:22 AM
I have my stash of Feather blades too. Sometimes I try them and get a good shave but I know it wont last. Too much skin taken away and next day or day after I get irritation. They are humourless ninja blades.
08-02-2008, 12:58 PM
Feathers give me a little bit of irritation on the first day, but on day two and three, they give some of the best shaves ever.
08-02-2008, 01:03 PM
Thanks for all the replies everyone. I'm gonna keep dabbling with these, since I've still got seven blades left, but I'm thinking after that what I've discovered is that it's not that there's anything wrong with Feather blades but that I've just got a more sensitive face than I realized.
I'm beginning to believe that with regard to the Slant, at least for my face, it's more about technique and a new blade than the brand of blade.
I've used it with a few brands now and have gotten BBS with no irritation with all of them. I might need an extra touch up with an IP compared to a sharper blade but hey, that's just a chance to play with more lather and I save about half the price of the ninja blade.
I'm pretty adamant about good prep, that probably helps as well.
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