Apart from my family, friends and faith, gracing my face with a newly bladed safety razor is one of my small joys in life. That victorious battle against your whiskers as the double-edged blade slices through the stubble.
Closed comb safety razors are the choice of most beginners to classic shaving. They tend to be quite forgiving as you master your new-found experience. But the truth is, they don’t suit everyone and maybe, just maybe, an open comb razor such as the Parker 24C will be a better option for you.
What is an open comb safety razor?
If you’re anything like me, before you purchased your first safety razor, you did a bit investigation. It didn’t take long to discover that there were a couple of different types of cutting plates and combs to choose from.
Traditionally, open comb razors were only good for navigating around the extravagant moustaches and sideburns of yesteryear. However these days, advancements in technology have enabled them perform just as well as any other safety razor.
So let’s take a look at what an open comb safety razor is.
To put it simply, an open comb razor has no safety bar. The teeth on an open comb razor tend to be larger and are generally spaced further apart. They comb through the hair as it cuts to channel your whiskers (particularly longer ones) as you shave. The result of this is that your face has greater exposure to the blade than you would with a closed comb.
Parker 24C Open Comb Safety Razor
Parker have a strong reputation for quality products in the wet shaving community. Made in India, the 24C certainly reflects that.
You also have the option of the 26C with the black handle as well.
At A Glance:
- Design: Three Piece
- Comb: Open
- Length: 101mm (4in)
- Weight: 94g (3.3oz)
- Price: Approx $30. Click for Today’s Price at Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, & West Coast Shaving
- My Rating: 4 out of 5
All safety razors are built to perform a specific purpose and the Parker 24C open comb razor is no different.
Cuts Thick Hair
- As the blade has no safety bar, the greater exposure of the blade slices through thicker hair with little effort.
Good For Heavy Growth
- The open comb allows longer hair to be guided through the specially designed teeth. This results in a very effective shave, particularly if you have a few days growth (or more) to disperse of.
Easy To Clean
- The lack of safety bar ensures that the rinsing away of whiskers and lather is a quick and efficient process.
- With experience, this really becomes a non-issue. However the exposed blade and non-existent safety bar may deliver you a few extra nicks when you first start out.
As a side note, many have said that open comb razors are not suitable for beginners. Interestingly, plenty of users claim that they couldn’t distinguish a significant difference to their closed comb cousin…just some food for thought!
What are others saying?
“Fantastic razor, the handle is surprisingly heavy. It’s aggressive enough to cut my coarse curly hair, but gentle not irritating my sensitive skin. I find that persona lab blue blades pair best with this razor. This was my first DE razor, and while i have suffered a few nicks, it was nothing drastic. I will certainly recommend this to anyone who is interested in wet shaving.”
“This is my first DE razor after years of using a cartridge. I chose this one based on good reviews on online forums and I am very happy. Make sure you also buy a blade sampler pack if you are new to this so you can find a blade that works great for you. One thing to keep in mind is absolutely no pressure!! Just let the weight of razor do the work.”
“It’s going to take some practice, but so far I really like this razor. It’s heavy in your hand and the weight of the razor really does the work for you.”
“I still contend that Parker quality has come a long way. I feel that it surpasses Merkur quality of fit and finish, and equals that of Edwin Jagger.
I normally prefer a short-handled razor, but the grip, comfort, and balance of this razor is superb.
It is not as aggressive as one might expect from an open comb razor, but certainly aggressive enough to tackle several days worth of growth. My first shave with the 24C was with one of my short handles attached, the second with the handle supplied. The second shave was much better and a definite BBS!”
“I would recommend this razor to cautious beginners and experts alike. Parker has joined the ranks of the fine razors available today.”
“Received the razor with the head snapped off. There was no damage to the products box or the shipping container (box). I had 3 other items shipped with this razor and none of them were damaged. Returned item and replaced with a Mehaz (I love this razor). Didn’t trust the quality of the Parker to try another one.”
“This is my first DE razor so maybe I’m missing something. When I shave with this, it feels like one edge is more aggressive (less angle?) than the other. I’ve tried turning the heads in multiple configurations, loosening the handle, tightening the handle (makes it worse), but nothing changes the difference between the two edges. Anybody else experience this?”
It’s fair to say that an open comb razor isn’t everybody’s cup of tea. If however you want to dive into the world of open comb safety razors, you could do much worse than the Parker 24C
Although there have been manufacturing concerns raised by a couple of people, for around $30, the Parker 24C is a very respectable product with a price that’s hard to go past.
What is your experience with open comb safety razors? I’d love to hear about your thoughts and experiences in the comments below.
Time to get your shave on! 😉