Shaving razors are a lot like ink jet printers in that the refill cartridges are where the manufacturer makes its money from consumers. Much like printers, replacement razor cartridges cost an arm and a leg and although name-brand cartridges claim to offer a closer shave compared to a cheap disposable, they seemingly go dull just as quickly.
The high cost of replacements has left a void in the market that companies like Dollar Shave Club are eager to fill but even still, it doesn’t solve the one key issue of durability. After just a couple of shaves, you still need a new cartridge.
That’s where a premium razor from Zafirro enters the equation. Its Z2 razor replaces the typical stainless steel blades with a pure white sapphire blade featuring an edge that’s about 80 atoms thick at the tip, or roughly 5,000 times thinner than the width of a human hair.
Zafirro is currently seeking funding on Kickstarter and I’ll cover that here but stick with me as I’m going to let you in a little secret that’ll revolutionize how you shave and cut down on costs exponentially.
Zafirro actually isn’t new to Kickstarter as it tried to fund its Z2 shaver early this year. Although it far surpassed its funding goal, the team ultimately had to cancel its Kickstarter as it wasn’t able to raise enough funding outside of its campaign to continue ahead. Now, they’re trying again and are off to a good start with more than $270,000 raised of their $1 million goal with 22 days remaining.
The razor industry hasn’t changed much over the last half century with companies simply adding additional blades to the equation in an attempt to attract customers. These companies have very little interest in improving durability as it would cut into (no pun intended) their bottom line.
Zafirro says its sapphire blade razor, which it claims is 10x sharper than a surgeon’s scalpel, can last up to a year with the potential to last even longer. They’ve also put a lot of thought into the handle, hoping that it could one day be passed down from generation to generation like a well-made watch.
There’s no denying that it’s an impressive looking razor and at an early bird price of $99 (MSRP of $299) , it may be a good deal for some. By all means, if you’re compelled to back it, go right ahead. But if you like to save money as I do, keep reading as I’m going to share something I recently learned about razors that has changed my outlook entirely.
I’ve always assumed, perhaps as many of you do, that razors simply go dull after a couple of uses. As it turns out, that isn’t the case at all. Razors stop becoming effective because the blades rust, thus rendering them useless.
Not quite convinced, I decided to conduct my own experiment. In an effort to give my experiment the least possible chance of success, I selected a cheapo two-blade disposable razor. I used the razor as I normally would but instead of just setting it aside on the counter, I dried it. Thoroughly. Very thoroughly. I’m talking, tapping it repeatedly on the counter to make sure every tiny bit of water was removed from the blades.
I also ran the razor over my arm hair in the opposite direction you would if you were shaving (you can also do this on a pair of jeans). Once ensuring it was completely dry, I wrapped it in a dry wash cloth and stored it away in a drawer to ensure it wouldn’t soak in any moisture from a steaming hot shower.
At this point, I’ve gotten five shaves out of the razor thus far and it feels the same as it did new. Using my old tactic of shaving and just setting it aside, I could get no more than two shaves out of the same cheap razors before having to toss it and grab a new one. The little lubrication strip is shot but if you use shaving gel, there's no need for it - it's just another gimmick that manufacturers use to boost sales.
I’ve heard that if you take care of a razor using these methods, you can easily get a year or more use out of it. I’m not sure if that’s possible as I’m only a month or so into my test but the results are incredibly promising at this point. Five shaves from a razor that’s typically only good for two at best certainly speaks for itself.