- Beauty & Style
- Contact Us
Like Us, Follow Us
Your lifestyle, your quirk
You’re at the drugstore, balking over the cost of razor blade cartridges, when you realize that the men’s blades are slightly cheaper. Sure, the cartridge is blue, but you’ve adopted the menswear-on-women trend in the past, so why not a blue razor? It turns out that there is more to gender-specific razors than color, so here’s what you need to know about razors so you can choose the best shave and best price for you.
Reader’s Digest spoke to representatives from three different razor manufacturers and found that there were actually three differences between men’s and women’s razors, two that affect the blades and one that affects the shape of the razor itself.
The first difference is the angle of the blades. Men’s razor blades have a greater angle for a closer shave. The angle provides what the industry calls “aggressive exposure,” but it means that the blades can also get aggressive with your skin. The greater angle can cut through the thick hairs on men’s faces, but it comes with a greater risk of cuts. Manufacturers have found that men are more willing to deal with cuts on their faces than women are with cuts on their legs. It is pretty uncomfortable to put nylons over a fresh cut; every woman who shaves has her own story of the nick that wouldn’t stop bleeding, and little cuts in the armpit really sting, so I guess I can understand what the manufacturers are saying.
The other difference that involves the blades is that some razors are better set up for longer hairs. Women tend to shave less frequently than men, especially in the cooler months (why shave if no one will see it and it will keep your legs warmer?), so therefore they are often dealing with longer hair. Some women’s razors, like the Schick Personal Touch line, have a guard bar with combs to put the longer hairs into proper position. Not all women’s razors have this.
The difference with the shape of the razor is that women’s razors are angled so that more of the leg is visible when shaving. Men typically have a good, straight-on view of their face in the mirror as they are shaving regardless of the handle shape, but women don’t have the same luxury on their legs.
Other than those reasons, men’s and women’s razors are pretty much the same. They’re even made of the same metals (though Schick offers a titanium-dipped razor blade for men and not for women). Many women’s razors have moisturizing bars added to the cartridge, but if you’re already using shaving gel, conditioner, or even soap to lubricate your skin, that expensive little add-on is unnecessary.
If you’ve been considering using men’s razors, you’re not the only one. Schick found that the majority of women use razors designed for men. My personal preference is to choose a razor that can accommodate replacement cartridges designed for men or women, like the Schick Quattro. I have a pink handle angled so that I can see my leg better (not that I’ve ever noticed) and I can choose the blade I want. After using blades for both genders, I have to say that I prefer the close shave of men’s blades, plus I save money by not paying for all of those extra moisture strips. And for another plus, if the drugstore is ever sold out of the men’s blades and I have to make sure I’m hair-free, I can always buy a pack of lady blades. It’s the best of both worlds. You’ve got to find the best blade for your needs, so if protecting yourself from nicks or going shaving gel-free is a priority, stick with women’s razors. Now that you’re armed with the information, you can make an educated decision in the razor aisle.