#1

Member
SE NH
I did a comparison of Feather versus Astra blades of the course of the spring.


A few things to know. I am a Feather man. I used whatever I could get at the supermarket. Then about 7 years ago I tried a sample packet and decided Feathers were for me. Along the way I tried whatever freebies Bullgoose tossed in my order. I also bought a 100 pack each of Isreali Personnas and the Polsilver Super Iridiums. But other than that I have been a Feather acolyte.

The Feathers have a short life in any razor I used. Three days only. Because of this I use ALL blades for only 3 days. I never thought to investigate that.

I ordered an ATT S1 slant at Christmas time. It came with Astra blades. I used one or two and was pleased. A little later there was a thread on Feather blades. Freddy posted that he never used them due to the short useful life and there were other more economical choices that worked as well.

I decided to use the Astras I had from my slant and do a test.

This was my gear. I used 9 razors and only Astra blades. As I have 7 years of experience with the Feathers I did not feel the need for a side by side test.
I used Crabtree & Evelyn Nomad shaving soap for all of the testing, a Kent BK4 brush, a Fine lathering bowl and after shave care was vintage Old Spice.
[Image: JkL4yFs.jpg]

The results were overwhelmingly in favor of Astra. The blades last twice as long as the Feather - 6 days versus 3. The biggest surprise was that Astra beat Feather blades in a Feather ASD2 razor. I don't ever get BBS shaves from this razor. With the Feather blade I would apply to much pressure and get some weepers. I got nice smooth shaves with the Astra, equivalent to the Feather but smoother and weeper free.

The only issue was in an Ikon original straight bar. I got cuts and stopped after 5 days.

The results for all of the testing are below.

I will be using mostly Astras now. They cost $18 per 100. The Feathers are twice as expensive and last half as long.



[Image: 4gWMtVJ.png]

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#2
Wow, Phil! What a lovely spread-sheet! Happy2

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Celestino
Love, Laughter & Shaving  Heart
#3

Super Moderator
(This post was last modified: 06-23-2016, 01:21 AM by Marko.)
Heretic! Prepare the stake and kindling wood! Smile Just kidding. Isn't it amazing how we can proceed absolutely convinced of something that turns out not to be true, or at least not in all circumstances. I think its great that you tested your beliefs. I personally like the feather blade in the as-d2 razor but it does only last for 3 days at most. A couple of weeks ago I took a "spent" feather out of the as-d2 (after 3 shaves) as usual but rather than toss it in the blade bank I put it into my ikon #102 and it gave me 3 more really nice BBS shaves. How odd, I can drive myself silly with testing the combinations and permutations of razor, blade and sequence. I don't think I will however but I will keep note. I can never be certain now whether a blade is really spent when I'm done with it. Should I try it in another razor? Maybe I'll just grow a beard.Sad
#4

Member
Detroit
Nice work Phil. Astra SPs are my go-to DE blade and I much prefer them to Feathers. Also, they can be had for much less than $18 for 100. I've found them as low as $11 for the 100 pack on Amazon.

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- Jeff
#5
I don't know where you're buying your blades but at Amazon you get 100 for $10. The SP are $10 and the regular Astra are $10.85 shipped. Personally I prefer Astra SP over the regular stainless.

I use Astra SP, Feather, and Kai in my AS-D2. The Astra blades work great buy are not as sharp as the feather. The Kai are as sharp and last twice as long as Feather. A lot depends on beard type too.
#6

Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
Phil, that was a fantastic test and thank you for posting the results.  As you know, I am not a fan of Feather DE blades. (I can just see Marko doubling the amount of kindling just for my pyre. Tongue )  There are just too many others that a) last much longer, b) offer a smoother shave, and c) don't produce nicks and weepers.

Of course, it all comes down to personal preference but I think many of us have decided that the Feather blade is not the end-all and be-all that some claim it to be.

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#7

Super Moderator
(This post was last modified: 06-23-2016, 08:19 PM by Marko.)
(06-22-2016, 11:02 PM)Freddy Wrote: Phil, that was a fantastic test and thank you for posting the results.  As you know, I am not a fan of Feather DE blades. (I can just see Marko doubling the amount of kindling just for my pyre. Tongue )  There are just too many others that a) last much longer, b) offer a smoother shave, and c) don't produce nicks and weepers.

Of course, it all comes down to personal preference but I think many of us have decided that the Feather blade is not the end-all and be-all that some claim it to be.

You know I like working up a sweat chopping the woodSmile Next we'll have a Spanish Inquisition - I'll bet you didn't expect that did you? In my experience nobody does!

Seriously, I had dismissed the Astra blades early on in my wet shaving journey but recently I've given them a second chance and I have to say the Astra blades have improved over the past few years. Either that or my technique has improved (which it has) or the blades just didn't like my EJ DE-89 and prefer the current razors I'm using. The beauty of DFS is I've had an opportunity to read and learn from the experiences of many other members, both positive and negative and it has improved my shaving experience immensely. Soaking boar brushes, merkur man lathering technique, discovering amazing artisans and vendors and lets not forget the awesome DFS Limited Editions that release periodically.

I guess there won't be any fires today Smile
Marko

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#8

Member
Austin, TX
Great overview and thanks for sharing PhilNH5 . Astra were the very first 100 pack that I ever bought and I still keep a decent handful around. I do think they are a fantastic all rounder but like your original perspective, Feather are my go to. The just have a bit more sharpness out of the gate for me that I like with my bramble brush beard.

I did break out a Crystal today, yesterday's darling, and was reminded of how much I like those blades too.

So many choices, so little time Smile

Very well done!
Kevin
#9
Astra SP's are my go to blade also. I get a great shave no matter what razor I put them in. It's just an extra bonus that my favorite blade is also one of the cheaper ones. Smile

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#10

Member
Greenville, SC USA
(06-22-2016, 11:02 PM)Freddy Wrote: There are just too many others that a) last much longer, b) offer a smoother shave, and c) don't produce nicks and weepers.
And, don't forget "d)", Freddy. The lack of those #$@%& wax blobs on many others. Big Grin

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Does Mean I Must Buy High End Shaving Gear?
--Roger--


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