Some people may think that choosing a razor is purely a cosmetic choice, but the truth is that it is farthest from being purely a cosmetic choice. We know how it feels when we have those nicks, cuts, and irritation from the one that isn’t made for you, so a lot of thinking should go in before you decide which razor you want to buy.
Open comb razors over the years have been providing quality and efficient shave. A lot of science goes into how razors work and how we should go about choosing the perfect one for any specific skin type and skin needs. So, to help decide which one to pick, without any further delay let’s dive right into our list of 10 best open comb razors.
Best Open Comb Razors 2021
1. Muhle R41 Open Comb Razor – The Aggressive One
The first on our list of best open comb razors is Muhle R41. Muhle is a German company and they have been around since 1956 and have produced a variety of really fine razors over the years. The material used in manufacturing R41 is chrome plated die-cast zinc alloy which makes it non-corrosive and long-lasting and gives it a really attractive luster.
The standard Muhle R41 weighs about 2.8 ounces, but it has different variations ranging from 1.8 ounces to 3.4 ounces. It has a variety of designs including handles made up of white and black high-grade resins or with chrome-plated brass, so if you are not going to allow build a lot of soap, they are going to last you a while.
R41 is a tooth comb razor and razors of this kind were particularly developed for wet shavers and for people who don’t shave as often. The design makes it an aggressive razor because the head does not cover the blade as much as the more popular razors and its specific angle makes it efficient at cutting hair. Some have also said that it’s the most aggressive razor present in the market, so we would recommend you to have some practice before you put your hand on this one, safety first you know!
Like closed comb razors, the blade is held in its place by the curvature of its cap. Open tooth comb and a gap behind the foam edges make sure edges are debris free (debris being the shaved hair and other residues including shaving foams and soaps). So, you would like how clean it is after the shave.
As we know, the shaving result depends on several factors including how thick the beard is, its density, the length of hair, and most importantly how the blade and the razor interact with your beard. Some may achieve the desired results with sharp and aggressive blades while others can benefit more from slightly gentle blades. R41 is best if you have thick hair density.
2. Parker 24C Open Comb Razor – Good for Both Beginners and Experienced
For a long time, Parker has produced the finest and efficient shaving equipment and grooming accessories for men. 24C is one of their finest productions. It is an open comb three-piece razor.
When it comes to the material used, Parker has used a brass frame for the durability of 24C which also gives it an alluring look, but it does not have the best of finishes. This razor has a length of 4 inches, has a gritty metal handle. It weighs around 3.3 ounces which makes its design a heavyweight. Most of its weight is in the handle.
The three-piece design of this razor disassembles into separate pieces and makes the blade alignment easy and precise. Tooth-shaped razor design enables the maximum interaction between razor and hair and thus provides a smooth, swift, and clean shave.
When it comes to grip, 24C has two sets of grooves, a couple near the bottom and a couple near the top, I hold it near the head and the grooves make your fingers stick to them making the grip very tight and having little chance of slipping it out. Because of its design, it doesn’t get clogged by the hair debris and after the shave, its disassembly makes it easier to clean.
It is around 4 inches long, so with my larger hands I always like getting something closer to 4 inches long, so Parker 24C can be a great fit for my hands. Parker 24C is good for both beginners and experienced wet shavers as it is neither too aggressive nor it’s too gentle. Razor provides an optimal shave to all individuals.
If you are looking for the best open comb razor, it is probably because they are considered more aggressive, Parker 24C is aggressive but I would rate its aggressiveness at 3/5 because there is not much space between the blade and the safety bar, which in turn does not expose blade as much, so if you are new to wet shaving, this can be a good choice for you.
3. Merkur 23C Open Comb Razor – Budget-Friendly Double Edge Razor
Merkur 23C is a German-made razor which means you don’t have to worry about its durability. Merkur 23C measures 4 inches in length with a handle of 11 mm in diameter. The material is plated with chrome which provides an alluring look.
Merkur 23C, just like Parker 24C, can be disassembled into three separate pieces which enable the perfect placement of the blade in the razor and ensures maximum interaction between hair and blade. Another benefit of this separable design is that its head can be flipped and the edges can be protected making it hard to be worn out.
In my view, Merkur 23C is an excellent option for wet shavers. In beginning, you may face difficulty using it but after mastering the technique this little buddy won’t let you down. The handle of this razor is long and knurled which gives its user a firm and steady grip exactly what you need for wet shaving. It’s also available in short handles for people with small hands.
4. Merkur 33c Open Comb Razor – Good for People with Smaller Hands
Merkur 33c is also known as Merkur Classic. Razor is pretty simple in design, lightweight, and well constructed which is probably why it’s named Classic.
It weighs around 1.75 ounces which is definitely on the lighter side which I personally find difficult to work with. Its handle is moderate in length at 3.5 inches. This head-heavy razor has a good balance point located right at the top of the grip which gives swift maneuvering. Length is slightly shorter than other Merkur razors which are good for people with smaller hands.
Grip has cross-hatch patterns that are well debossed so even with wet or soapy hands it enables a firm and steady grip. The handle also has two grooves that mark the end of the handle. So, on the whole, it has a good grip and it shouldn’t be a problem.
Like almost every other razor mentioned in the list, it is also separable and can be separated into three pieces which enable good placement of blade. Because of the material used in its construction, it’s pretty durable and should last you a while.
5. Fatip Grande Double Edge Razor – A Razor with Multiple Designs
Fatip is an Italian company and has been in the business since the 1950s. Fatip Grande is a double edge safety razor that doesn’t get talked about much, but after testing this we have realized it has some really great features and deserves to be in our top 10 best open comb razors.
Fatip has introduced double edge open comb razors in three different handle designs which are the Grande, Piccolo, and Retro, head for all three razors are the same, and handles can be selected according to one’s desire.
Fatip is one of the only few razor heads which are made up of solid brass. The handle is also solid brass but available in a few different plating options like nickel, chrome, gold, and black metal. Grande weighs about 2.2 ounces which is pretty light. Because of its solid brass material, it’s manufactured to last a lifetime.
There is a similar feel to handles when it comes to grip. The grooves cut into the handle are shallow and are not much to hold onto, which can become slippery if it is wet. The price of the razor varies according to the finishing design and handle you’re selecting, but don’t worry the price of every design is not much and is easily affordable.
The open comb allows a clear path for the longer hair to interact with the blade and get cut. Other than this design also helps to avoid the clogging of the razor. The previous version of this razor head had a steeper angle which allowed an aggressive shave, but the revised model has a comparatively shorter razor head which allows less exposure of the blade, yet gives an efficient, swift, and moderately aggressive shave.
The threading on the Fatip head is actually closer to a 10-32 thread pitch, so it is a little bit smaller than average on the market, so occasionally you will run into a handle from another manufacturer that would not fit on the Fatip head, but you can always put a couple of layers of Teflon tape on the threading and you are good to go.
6. Schone Open Comb Razor – Suitable for Soft and Less Dense Beard
Next on our list of best open comb razors is this Italian-made safety razor from Schone. It is hollow-handled, which makes it a much lightweight razor, it weighs around 66 g. Razor is well balanced, simple, and easy to use. The handle has pipe detailing on it which has the finishing of gold polish making it cool and stylish.
Coming to its features, it has a head which an open comb, which as we know by now allows the hair to be shaved efficiently. As it is a three-piece razor, it is easier to clean and store. The open comb allows the long hair to interact with the blade giving you a smooth shave.
Talking about its head, if you see it without the blade it looks good, but once you place the blade inside the headspace is generated which causes the blade to wobble, and consequently, the blade doesn’t sit well which means it gives a less efficient shave.
The Schone is a lightweight razor, so it can’t be used for aggressive shaves because the handling and maneuvering become tricky. This razor is suitable for people with light and less dense hair growth.
7. MERKUR Traditional Double Edge Safety Razor – The best one available
Classic Merkur three-piece double-edge safety razor’s design is long-lasting, easily cleanable, and easy to use. The razor has an alluring chromed open comb straight bar head with standard fixed blade gaps.
As we know by now, the razors with more wide gaps are believed to be aggressive as they have a high exposure of blade and no matter how long, thick, or dense the hair growth is, this bad boy won’t spare it. The handle of this razor is of hexagon shape and has a lined inlay, which provides a great grip.
Merkur double edge safety razor gives the best possible close shave without causing irritation otherwise experienced with other open comb razors. Razor is budget-friendly as it is compatible with cheap and recyclable double edge blades.
With this beast of a razor, we would recommend some instructions for you to get an efficient shave:
- Always hold the razor at an angle of 30 degrees.
- Don’t apply force
- Let the weight of the razor do its work
- Always shave with the grains (shave towards the hair growth)
- Always use a double-edged single blade as it halts the razor bumps and prevents skin irritation
Moreover, the blade has an open comb which makes it easier to clean and its separable design makes the placement of the blade perfect consequently giving you a smooth and swift shave. Because of the gaps, this razor is less likely to get clogged.
8. Parker 26C Open Comb Razor – For Barber Shave at Home
We reviewed Parker 24c earlier in our list and although there is not much difference between Parker 24c and 26c, the latter being the latest version has some improvements and features that the former lacked.
This three-piece razor weighs around 3.3 ounces and having a heavyweight design makes it one of the best razors for aggressive shaving. Open comb enables the maximum interaction and heavyweight ensures that the hairs are shaved efficiently.
Like 24c. 26c is also an open comb razor that provides an extremely close shave. The material used in its construction is solid brass with an exotic black handle. The handle is 4 inches long and is textured for steady grips. The textured handle enables firm handling even when your hands are super wet or super soapy.
This is an excellent razor and a great help especially if you are cutting off a week’s worth of thick beard hair. If you have been a closed-comb razor user, beware to change your angle of attack, otherwise, you will cut yourself as with any other open-comb razor. Throw some feather blades on it and you will have the face of a baby’s bottom.
9. Merkur 15c Open Comb Razor – Elegance is Guaranteed
We have another Merkur on our list of best open comb razors, Merkur 15c is designed to last a lifetime because it is extremely durable like any other Merkur razors.
When it comes to looks, Merkur 15c material is finished with chrome giving it an attractive look. Patterns are embossed on its 3-inch long handle which provides a comfortable and steady grip even when your hands are not dry. The design is quite charming and elegant.
This razor has a safety bar that has open teeth with gaps which are believed to help with a wiry and very thick beard. This is also a good option for aggressive shavers looking for a more aggressive razor than 23c.
Moreover, the handle of this razor is pretty thin, but it’s easy to hold despite that. Its 3-inch length and a non-slip grip make it an excellent option for people with smaller hands who find it difficult to shave with razors having longer handles. The smaller handle enables maximum maneuverability and thus gives a perfect shave.
It is head heavy which means that you don’t have to apply much of a force because it does all the work for you. While using this razor don’t push it too hard on the skin like other razors, reduce the hair of the beard gradually and you will get a smooth face you never had before.
10. Shaving Factory Double Edge Safety Razor – Your Travel Buddy
Shaving Factory double edge safety razor is different and unique in design than all the other razors we have reviewed in our list of best open comb razors because it comes in “twist to open” technology and the blade is inserted by loosening a knob as it opens the head of the razor. The blade can be adjusted well in this razor also.
Moreover, it comes in a wonderful hard plastic travel case with a small mirror inside, which makes this razor great for travel.
Shaving Factory is compatible with all standard-sized razor blades including stainless steel Derby blades which are not very expensive, so it gives you a cheap yet cool and smooth shave.
This is a light, but a well-constructed razor. The gates hold tight when closed, but can be a bit loose when open. It comes with a blue gift box which has space for it to be contained plus it has additional space for the blades to be used and as you would expect with a price tag like this razor has that the material used is not that long-lasting and is corrosive. It is not too aggressive and can be a great buy for your travels and if you are a newbie.
Ultimate Buyer’s Guide to Help You Decide Which Open Comb Razor to Buy
There are many open comb razors out there each of them having its own cons and pros. Some of the best razors made it to our list. Up till now, we hope that you have made your choice and you have also realized that razors aren’t like just any other product and you need to put a little bit of thinking before purchasing them.
But if you’re still confused about the razor and not sure which one is best for you here is the ultimate guide for you to choose the one you desire.
Every individual has his own preferences and every brand has its own specifications and specialties so to decide which one is best for you there are some things you need to keep into consideration which are:
Size of Handle
Generally, there are two types of sizes available on the market one is 3 inches and the other being 4 inches. The difference between the two is just one inch and it may not seem very important while purchasing a razor but there is a lot to that different than just one inch.
This one inch is enough to give you comfort or cause you distress. This one-inch matters a lot. Now you might be wondering how this one inch is so important so here is why;
So the people with bigger hands should choose the handle of a bigger size and similarly, people with smaller hands should use the handle of smaller size.
Weight of Razor
The weight of the razor is important as the size of the razor. Razors with heavyweights are more aggressive and are used for the hair that is dense and hard however the razors with lightweight are less aggressive and are used for less dense and light hair growth.
The choice is very important if a person with dense hair uses a lightweight razor it will provide him no good. In fact, it may cause great distress as the person would need to push hard and would need to force the razor which may cut his skin.
On the other side if a person with light and less dense hair growth will use a heavyweight razor it will not cause him anything but harm. He may end up cutting his skin instead of shaving his beard.
Compatibility with Blades
Well, the reason why most people purchase razors may be the time. As you may have to wait at the barbershop to get your turn but you can do it without wasting your time at home. So people purchase razors to save time but there is another reason why some people purchase razors which is budget.
It is not economical to go to a barber and have a shave every day. So people purchase the razor to get an economical shave at home but what if you purchase a razor that is not compatible with inexpensive double edge blades available in the market? Too bad isn’t it?
The design does Matter:
There are two basic designs of open comb safety razors one is a three-piece or two-piece separable design and the other is a single-piece or inseparable design. Now, both of these designs have their own pros and cons. Separable three-piece designs enable the efficient placing of the blade in the head of the razor and it also enables the easy cleaning of the razor.
So before buying the razor do check it out it is mentioned in our reviews stated above.
Open Comb Vs Closed Comb
Now it may be in your head that what is the difference between an open and closed comb and how it affects your shave here is what you need to know.
The open comb is the comb in which there are gaps while in closed combs there are no gaps. Why the gaps are needed? Here is why
When a razor has an open comb it means it has gaps that allow a greater amount of exposure of the blade and subsequently helps to shave long hair. As because of gaps now there is greater interaction between blade and hair.
In General Open comb razors are more aggressive than closed comb which is why people with hard and dense hair should use an open comb and those with a light beard should use a closed comb.
The grip of Handle:
The grip of the handle is very important for a steady grip and proper maneuvering. The grip is made comfortable by using the appropriate design and appropriate embossing on the handle.
Some brands use a fairly simple design on their handle which is less embossed while others use extensive embossing and make different patterns. Handle with the former design doesn’t provide a very firm and steady grip as the palm of the hand is too smooth and it requires some sort of pattern of embossing to hold on to.
This is another factor you need to keep into account while purchasing a razor.
Material of Construction
If you want your open comb razor to last long material from which the razor is constructed must be kept in account. Razor is something that has to be in contact with water every time. So if the material is not stainless or non-corrosive it is not going to last very long.
The finishing material and finishing quality are also important as the material used. Improper finishing allows the air and other materials to come in contact with construction material and render it useless.
So if you’re concerned about the durability of the product you should not overlook this. Overall, all the German and Italian products have the finest material used in their construction.
Straight Edge vs Open Comb vs Slant Bar
The design of the open comb and slant bar is not much different. Open combs because of a toothed safety bar provide a greater exposure of blade which makes them more aggressive and best for irregular and dense hair growth. Slant bar, on the other hand, is designed for men with sensitive skin. It cuts the hair from a certain angle which makes a clean cut on the follicle and reduces the pulling of the follicle during the process.
Straight edge, on the other hand, is an entirely different category in terms of its design. Its blade can be folded in the handle. Unlike the former two, this type of razor has a single edge blade with a greater length. Straight edges are usually used for extremely dense hair growth and as it is hard to maintain a proper grip on them, they are not very easy to use. On the plus side, the possibility of a straight edge being clogged is almost next to nothing because of their design which also makes it easy to clean them.
We hope we have eliminated a lot of your confusion and have helped you decide on the razor you want to buy. If there is anything you would like to add or suggest you are welcome to do so in the comment section below.