A South Korean brand you might not recognise.
1st Shave (used with Kiehl’s White Eagle Ultimate Brushless cream)
I used the cream as I have for previous shaves, which is pretty much the same with any brushless cream, only with a little less product (as per their recommendations). No tugging, but I had relatively little stubble. I didn’t pick up any nicks either. My neck was generally good, though not great, but I did have a few rougher spots. ATG my face felt okay. ATG there was plenty of resistance, bordering on roughness. I will say that, without the trimming blade, I struggled to get the area directly under my nose so ended up with a rough strip there. Other places commonly missed by cartridge razors, like the corners of my mouth were also a little rough. Overall, just about a good shave.
2nd shave (used with Dove Men+Care Pro Moisture Sensitive Shave Cream)
I smoothed on the cream and set to work. I had a good amount of stubble, having used an electric shaver the previous day, so I got a little tugging on my top lip. Other than that, it sliced through my whiskers with ease. I opened a couple of previous wounds, but otherwise was nick-free. I paid special attention to my trouble-spots, which were still rough, but the rest of my neck was very good. WTG my face was slippery smooth. ATG was good too, with minimal resistance. Nowhere quite made it to BBS, but a couple of places went close. Post shave feel was soft but dry. I struggled a little with the area under my nose and I didn’t quite get all of it, despite my efforts. I also had a little roughness in the nooks and crannies that cartridges struggle with. Still, a very good shave.
3rd shave (used with Dr Carver’s Easy Shave Butter)
A small amount of cream provided enough slickness for my usual routine. I didn’t get any tugging or irritation. I had some roughness in my usual trouble-spots, but otherwise my neck was pretty good. WTG my face felt fine, though not super-smooth. ATG there was some resistance, but no roughness, though it was close in a few places. I did have a line of roughness under my nose, where I was unable to reach, and in the nooks around my mouth and chin. Post shave feel was soft but very dry. An average shave.
4th shave (used with Harry’s Shave Gel)
I covered my face using the gel, re-applying from the remnants in my palm for each pass. Slickness was good and I didn’t get any tugging, nicks or irritation. My neck was good, except for the usual trouble-spots. I paid special attention to them but that didn’t make any difference. WTG my face was super smooth. ATG there was some resistance but no roughness. There was a very thin line of roughness under my nose. A few places on my chin went close to BBS, but not quite. Post shave feel was okay, reasonably soft but dry. A very good shave.
5th shave (used with Groomed Moisture Zone Shave Cream)
I lathered up with my synthetic brush. Slickness felt good but I did open a prior nick or two, these were sealed before I finished though. My neck was very good with the only hint of roughness in the usual trouble-spots. My face was super smooth WTG. ATG there was some minor resistance, but no roughness. Nowhere made it close to BBS though. I did have that line of roughness under my nose, but it was so thin as to be unnoticeable. Post shave feel was soft but a bit dry. A very good shave.
I opted for three blades as I believe that to be the best balance in a multi-blade cartridge. It’s not too large, yet offers a quick and usually nick-free experience, at least that’s what I have found with my Mach3.
The trial pack includes a handle and four blades, but no cream or foam. Still, hard to complain for the price.
As I mentioned on my DSC razor review, the fitting is exactly the same, so the cartridges are interchangeable.
The razor felt a little cheap compared to the DSC one. Although it has some metal in it, it did feel a little lighter than the Executive from DSC, but the ergonomics didn’t feel as good either. This is the budget end of their line though, with four- and six-blade options also available.
I assumed the ‘trimming’ blade that some of the bigger cartridges use was a gimmick, to fight concerns about getting the slab of plastic close to the underside of your nose. The lack of one here showed, despite only having three blades, it does serve a purpose. That’s partly because the two strips either side of the blades make the head on this much larger than a Mach3.
It’s fair to say that the quality of my shaves varied with this. When I took the time to follow a full routine it worked well, even with brushless creams. If I rushed, unsurprisingly, it was pretty average.
It’s not as flash as the more expensive models, but I still prefer it to Harry’s, although their razor did provide more consistent shaves than this. For the price though, this is hard to beat. If you’re looking at Dollar Shave Club these guys should definitely be considered. They are the same blades, but a lot cheaper as they don’t come with all the marketing hype.