08-30-2018, 08:44 AM
#1
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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No, this is not another "I have a huge collection, I've spent too much money on this hobby" thread. No point to read another one, hobbies cost.-

I realised something interesting lately, something I had to see it myself to believe it.

I was on vacation and had the chance to experiment a bit. I took with me a forgotten pack of Bic Sensitives just in case I was in a hurry and didn't want to spend more than a few minutes on my shave.

At some point I tried them for the very first time. These are sold in packages of 6 with total cost of only 1 euro. The ones I tried are made in France. There is also a Sensitive version made in Greece, sold in packs of 5 or 10 and are a bit more expensive than the Bics made in France for an unknown reason thinking that these are manufactured here. Anyway.

I got 7 daily 2-pass shaves from the first one and another 7 from the second I tried, totaling two weeks worth of shaves with two disposable Bics.

So, each of these cost me around 0.17 euros and had 7 shaves, so 0.024 per shave.

They are very very light razors. They give close shaves with proper technique and they don't bite. I have a very tough and full beard, so I'd say that guys with lighter beard can easily get 10 shaves from each.

Same thing with the Gillette Guards, even though I prefer the Bic to this one.

A mid-priced blade is the GSB, which costs a bit less than 2 euros and each pack includes 5 blades, so 0.4 euro per blade. I usually have 4 2-pass shaves with these blades, so 0.1 euro per shave. A cheaper blade, let's name it ASP, costs 0.60 per pack, equal to 0.12 euro per blade. I get 3 2-pass shaves with these, so we have 0.04 per shave. Do I have to mention some expensive blades like the FHS, costing around 0.65 each which give just one good shave? And of course you have to buy a razor...

I am not going to get rid of my high-end items or any razor I have at the moment, but facts are facts. They surely don't give you the "magic" that traditional razors give to your shave, but if we want to talk about money and economy, some disposable razors are actually cheaper per shave. * thinking that many guys joined this hobby to save money*
Mach 3 and Fusions are a different story I guess.

I just had to see it myself to believe it...

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 08-30-2018, 09:00 AM
#2
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I think you are right. I think the last BIC's I used were made in France. I don't know about now, I think I'll look and see.
My original reason for going back to DE shaving was to save money.... Laughing1 24 
Facepalm ..Was I wrong. But I'm not complaining. Thumbsup
Oh, the prices of Mach 3 etc., have gone down, at least the TV commercials say that.
I think it may be because of DE shaving and Harry's Shave Club.

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 08-30-2018, 09:47 AM
#3
  • Mel S Meles
  • On the edge, ouch
  • 44.4899° south of the North Pole
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(08-30-2018, 08:44 AM)nikos.a Wrote: I realised something interesting lately, something I had to see it myself to believe it.

I am not going to get rid of my high-end items or any razor I have at the moment, but facts are facts. They surely don't give you the "magic" that traditional razors give to your shave, but if we want to talk about money and economy, some disposable razors are actually cheaper per shave. * thinking that many guys joined this hobby to save money*
Mach 3 and Fusions are a different story I guess.


An interesting topic you raise there, Nikos; thank you for bringing it up.  

My guess (based on very limited research) is that the price comparisons are highly specific to the shaver’s home nation.  

In Japan, I can buy (and have bought in April this year) KAI Besty3 disposable razors in a 6-pack for ¥954, or ¥159 per razor, which converts to about US$1.43.

[Image: r1UyvYY.jpg]

Based on limited experience, I can get at least ten shaves/* from each Besty3 razor.  That works out, then, to $0.143 per shave.
. . .     /* The Besty3 razor provides an excellent close, clean, and smooth shave, easily equal to, or better than, a DFS or better DE shave.  The Japanese take disposable razors very seriously; the Besty3 has titanium-coated tungsten alloy blades (think Personna74):  they are not cheap throwaways like disposable Gillettes or disposable Shicks in the United States.

I have not purchased Japanese-made DE blades in Japan, but the past couple of years, I have purchased and used in the United States exclusively Japanese KAI Stainless and Feather Hi-Stainless DE blades.  Buying 50 (10 5-packs) KAI blades at a time for $23 (including shipping), I am paying US$0.46 for each KAI blade, definitely on the high end of the price range for DE blades.  (I pay less per blade for Feather DE blades, but I also usually get fewer shaves from each Feather blade than I get from each KAI blade, so the cost per shave of KAI and Feather DE blades here in the United States is — for me — pretty much a wash.)  I usually get six or seven shaves from a KAI DE blade, so the blade cost per shave is about (46 ÷ 6.5) = US$0.07.  

Therefore, as a shaver in the United States shaving with premium Japanese blades, both DE and in disposable razors, the cost per shave of shaving with a disposable razor is about double the cost per shave of shaving with a DE blade.

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 08-30-2018, 10:39 AM
#4
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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Some photos to compliment the thread.

[Image: 5ayQXdq.jpg]
The ultimate contrast, an expensive soap with a very affordable disposable razor


[Image: FCVSXuD.jpg]It's called Sensitive because it has a plastic bar, while the Metal has a... metal one.



[Image: OmvHvDv.jpg]Along with the Gillette Guard

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 08-30-2018, 11:33 AM
#5
  • ARGH
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  • Boston, MA
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the only problem I see with these is that the enormous amount of plastic which does not degrade is being used and then dumped in landfills

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 08-30-2018, 02:40 PM
#6
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(08-30-2018, 11:33 AM)ARGH Wrote: the only problem I see with these is that the enormous amount of plastic which does not degrade is being used and then dumped in landfills

this is a huge problem worldwide, using products made of slow degradable plastic and is short lived. I wouldn't go back to cartridge no matter if its cheaper and even if they can make them of degradable plastic

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 08-30-2018, 03:16 PM
#7
  • nikos.a
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  • Athens, Greece
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This thread is not about the possible environmental impact(!) from using a few disposables every now and then, it's more of a thread about the long- living myth of cheaper traditional shaves, but I'm glad we have people with environmental concerns and people that whenever they read bad words like disposable razors, cartridges are ready to say that they're not going back as if someone told them to do so.

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 08-30-2018, 03:31 PM
#8
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Ive actually considered this from time to time.  If I really wanted to save money, I could get great shaves from a Mach 3 or Schick Xtreme 3 and a can of Gillette Foamy.  Ive thought about just giving it all up, using up the soaps, brushes and blades that I have and just using a cart and canned foam.  
At the end of the day though, even the cheapest disposable isnt as cheap as a DE, especially when you can get a good DE razor for around $20 and a 100 pack of blades for less than $15.
You are right though that most of us go into wet shaving in a quest to save money but we all get sucked into the hobby aspect of it and end up 10x more gear than we really need.

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 08-30-2018, 04:58 PM
#9
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I tried the BIC Sensitive years ago and it didn't work for me.  I couldn't get even one decent shave out of it.  It's great that it works for you and that you have that option.

Traditional shaving will save you money if you're pragmatic and minimalist  about it.  However, this is a hobby for me and hobbies cost money.  The money I spend on my hobbies is well spent, due to the enjoyment I get.  Thus, even if BIC Sensitive was a good shaver for me, I would not use it.

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 08-30-2018, 05:20 PM
#10
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(08-30-2018, 04:58 PM)TheLegalRazor Wrote: I tried the BIC Sensitive years ago and it didn't work for me.  I couldn't get even one decent shave out of it.  It's great that it works for you and that you have that option.

Traditional shaving will save you money if you're pragmatic and minimalist  about it.  However, this is a hobby for me and hobbies cost money.  The money I spend on my hobbies is well spent, due to the enjoyment I get.  Thus, even if BIC Sensitive was a good shaver for me, I would not use it.

Signs011

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 08-30-2018, 07:00 PM
#11
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For my beard, the Gillette fusion/sensor type of cartridge is what works. Have tried other brands, and less expensive disposables without luck. For me:

Gillette fusion/sensor: 6 shaves max @ $2-4 a cartridge, $0.33 - $0.66 a shave
Double edge, like a GSB: 4-6 shaves @ $0.18 a blade, $0.03 - $0.05 a shave
Single-edge, feather pro/pro-super: 8-12 shaves @ $0.50 - $0.60 a blade, $0.06 - $0.08 a shave

So, DE/SE = $0.03 - $0.08 a shave with the most conservative number of shaves, while cartridges give me a $0.33 - $0.66 range. That means cartridges that work well for me cost significantly more. I am also much happier with the overall shave experience - which is one of the primary drivers of moving away from cartridges.

Keep in mind that there are gents who’ll push a DE blade past 100 shaves Smile

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 08-30-2018, 08:54 PM
#12
  • SCOV
  • Senior Member
  • Minnesota
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In the US, looks like normally sold in 12 packs and $.25 to $.35 for per razor cost.  Women's disposable "sensitive" razors start at $1.00 each and Men's disposable razors at close to $2.00.  I would guess these BIC razors are aimed at Women or a one and done for men.  

If you had 7 good shaves from each BIC, that is truly a shaving bargain.  If you spend $2.00 for a more typical lower end multi-blade disposable razor, probably back to $.30 per shave.

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 08-30-2018, 09:28 PM
#13
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Over here disposables are less costly then carts, unless you assume a cart lasts ten times as long... and traditional wetshaving beats both, if I don't factor in all the razors, soaps, brushes and aftershaves I've bought  Angel

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 08-31-2018, 04:54 AM
#14
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Great view = responsable
(08-30-2018, 11:33 AM)ARGH Wrote: the only problem I see with these is that the enormous amount of plastic which does not degrade is being used and then dumped in landfills

Enviado do meu SM-N9005 através do Tapatalk

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 08-31-2018, 05:14 AM
#15
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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Interesting posts so far.

These are not going to replace my DE or SE razors, I won't change this nice habit, but I'll have one in my travel bag.

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 08-31-2018, 05:48 AM
#16
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I haven't found a place for disposables yet.  If I'm traveling by air and checking a bag, I take standard DE/SE equipment.  Same thing if I'm traveling by car or train.  If I'm traveling by air and carrying everything on board, I take my cart razor.  For my face, cart > disposable.  Carts can be expensive, but given how few times a year I need one, the cost per year (one cartridge per year?) is irrelevant to me.  

If I really wanted or needed to shave as inexpensively as possible, I might consider using inexpensive disposables based on the Nikos analysis.  But I still don't see it, because if I really needed or wanted to shave inexpensively, I'd use a $10 vintage razor and 10 cent blades exclusively when possible, and then unhappily use a cheap cart if necessary.  I don't want unhappily to use a razor I don't like if I don't have to.

If I got great shaves from an inexpensive disposable, I might change my short haul traveling practice.  But I don't.

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 08-31-2018, 09:31 AM
#17
  • Garb
  • Active Member
  • Oregon
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Once I got the DE fever I never went to a plastic cheap handle razor. I'd rather grow a beard. LOL  But, traveling to Asia would fear losing some of my finer razors so might go with "cheap" disposable?

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 08-31-2018, 03:12 PM
#18
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The expensive/cheap shave experience 
Argument on the forums usualy refers 
To DE or SE compared to Carts not those 
Little toys that Women are likely to use
 For shaving

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 08-31-2018, 07:53 PM
#19
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On the subject of disposable razors and the environment, a few years back, Schick made a verison of the Xtreme that was made from a biodegradable plastic.  I dont believe that they make it anymore but honestly, if someone made a disposable that were recyclable or biodegradable, Id be all for it.
I just hate how much plastic we just throw in the trash that doesnt break down for a very, very long time and I dont want to support that or contribute to that any more than I already do.

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 09-03-2018, 07:12 PM
#20
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I think the price subjectivity is going to be based on the razors. You picked a more expensive DE and a super cheap cartridge. I've used a Bic (my father in law buys the bulk packs, and they are available at hotels if you forget your own), and I can't even get one good shave out of them. So to make a more apt comparison for me, I would compare my old cartridge of choice, a Mach 3 ($2 each) vs one of my favorite blades, Astra ($0.10 each). Each provides 4-6 good shaves, so I'm looking at 20x cheaper shaves. Even if I stretch out the Mach 3 to twice as long they are 12x more expensive.

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