It’s absolutely no secret that I love using double edge razors. But they do need to be maintained & require a bit of cleaning & TLC from time to time.
So, how do you clean a safety razor? Let’s check it out!
Double-edge razors come in all shapes, sizes & designs. And when used correctly, can provide a zen-like experience to an otherwise sometimes hectic day. However, to keep your pride & joy in good working order, it’s important to give it a regular clean. This also includes a good disinfect to remove any nasties.
When I was younger I knew everything! Before I ventured into the wide world of wet shaving with double-edge razors, I was pulled into the hype of shaving with the latest & greatest multi-blade disposable cartridge razor. Now, since I wasn’t using one of those fancy electric razors, I thought I was shaving the “old fashioned” way. Little did I know, I was going to learn later on in life there was a far better way to shave. And I highlight that in my shaving showdown Safety Razor vs Multi Blade.
One huge drawback of using a cartridge razor, is that after a few uses, they are an absolute bugger to clean properly. In fact, most men (and women for that matter) wouldn’t even bother to give them a thorough clean, but rather chuck it into the trash, further adding to our planet’s unwanted symbols of our frantic disposable lifestyle.
Enter the safety razor. Not only is it more of a joy to use, but because you haven’t got dozens (well, up to 5 or 6) of blades to try to rinse your lather & whiskers out of, it is far, far easier to keep clean in between passes & shaves.
As I mentioned a little earlier, safety razors can present in various forms, with a range of manufacturing differences.
We also have vintage safety razors to consider as well. Maintenance of some of these require a little more care, whereas today, the steps I’m giving are more geared towards the beginner. Someone who might be thinking about, or has just purchased a new double-edge razor.
There are a number of posts out in the world wide web describing varying tools & methods to cleaning your safety razor. These range from boiling to using acid. Sadly some of these methods may corrode the finish on your razor, not to mention interfering with the opening mechanism of some models. We want to avoid this, so I want to keep it simple & most of all, effective.
What You Will Need:
- An Old Toothbrush
- Ordinary Dish Washing Liquid
- Isopropyl Alcohol or Barbicide
- Cup or Glass
I told you I’d keep it simple! Now for the process.
Take apart, or open up the cutting head base plate (depending on the design) to expose your razor blade to remove it.
Fill your glass or cup to about a quarter full with warm water. Then apply a small amount of your chosen dish washing liquid.
Thoroughly wet your toothbrush in the solution. Next gently scrub all of the pieces of your disassembled razor. This is a very mild solution & will not damage your razor in any way. Make sure you pay particular attention to the cutting plates in the razor head. Even though you might be extremely diligent in rinsing your razor in between shaves, they will still build up soap scum after time. Butterfly (TTO) type razors can be a little more challenging to clean, as their parts aren’t quite as accessible, but with a little care, you’ll have them sparkling just as much as a 2 or 3 piece razor.
Rinse all the parts of your freshly scrubbed weapon with warm water. While your there, tip the water out of your glass & give it a rinse as well.
Pour enough Isopropyl Alcohol into the glass to cover the head of your razor. Any nasties are killed almost instantly, but if you wish, you could soak it for 10 minutes or so the alcohol works its way into all areas of the head. If you chose to use Barbicide, just follow the ratio directions & soak for the required time.
After rinsing or soaking in your chosen disinfectant, allow your razor to dry. Store it in your usual place, ready for next time.
So how often should you clean & disinfect your razor? How long is a piece of string!? Yes my answer is a bit tongue-in-cheek, but it’s the truth. Some gents have a set routine. It might be a particular day every week or fortnight. Others like myself tend to give the beast a good clean when changing blades. Whereas others will wait until normal rinsing isn’t removing soap scum from the head & clean when needed.
There is no right or wrong answer here. The best time to clean, is whatever is best for you.
That’s all there is to it! You now have a shiny, clean, germ free razor ready for action.
How do you clean your razors? Do you have any tips, tricks or suggestions? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!
Here is a great video showing how to clean various double edge razors thanks to Geofatboy from Shave Nation.
Time to get your shave on! 😉