#1

Member
Peachtree City, GA
The Leaf razor has been reappearing in shave fora after an initial period of interest some time back and subsequent fading to obscurity.  The design principle has long fascinated due to its providing a cartridge experience of brainless, nick less, close enough shaving without the absurd pricing of cartridge blade refills.  Numerous generic cartridge razor companies have also appeared in recent years capitalizing on the shaving community’s simmering anger at the price of disposable refill blade cartridges and media advertisements mocking that the shave aisles of grocers and pharmacies have higher security protocol than opiate dispensaries.  Paradoxically, odd that nearly all such start up insurgent razor companies have been bought out by the majors and integrated into cynical faux competitors slowly migrating prices upward as internet store fronts run by the same majors slowly and ever so slightly lower the direct to consumer price of their branded products via disintermediation simultaneously raising profits…hmmmmm….  Irrespective, have long been intrigued, wanting to try the razor prior to purchasing to determine if it would work as a body shaver.  Until recently this has been on the back burner of desires for hardware until Phil of BullGoose posted he was testing one to ascertain if it worth carrying.  Honestly, just wanting to determine if it was possible to borrow the razor for a test, it was suggested obliquely that he would be amenable to sponsoring a passaround.  Thus did I get involved in sharing this razor with the wider community.
 
Make no mistake that this is a razor built to a price point – no artfully crafted stainless steel, copper or titanium here – just inexpensive pot metal with various grades of coating, in this particular case, chrome.  Truth of the matter, given that their primary target users are cartridge shavers, even this is a significant step up in quality of material and execution.  It literally feels as exclusive and over the top compared to the cartridge razors as some of the best artisan craftsman razors feel in comparison to Merkur, Rockwell and other such DE razors – life is but a game of comparison, eh?  That is not to suggest it an ugly razor; it actually has a sleek futuristic look.  Ergonomically, the shape falls readily to hand and despite having absolutely minimal stippling seemingly more oriented to aesthetics than ergonomics and completely lacking knurling, never feels slippy in use be it sink or shower.  In fact, the biggest danger of the razor falling is when laid flat on a surface, as it is so rounded that the slightest bump sends it flying; it would be well advised to purchase the optional stand and use it even whilst shaving between lathers.
 
Another area where there was much trepidation was the blade loading: the process seems hopelessly complex relative to any other shaver ever encountered.  “Seems complex” are the operative words; while more complex to load than other razors, it really is quite easily achieved after viewing the online video even once.  Sure, it requires snapping regular DE blades in half – quite easily and safely accomplished by folding lengthwise while in their wrapper and then using the knurled knob on the reverse of the razor to release the various plates, placing the halved blades securely in the magnetized notches then retightening the knurled knob – much easier to undertake than describe, I swear.  While on the subject of loading blades, it best to inform users that Leaf provides no option but to take their standard private labeled boxed blades when buying a razor – a frightening prospect for any experienced DE shaver hating unknowns, particularly blades.  Fear not; as it happens, Leaf’s private labeled boxed blades are simply Astra SPs, a favourite of mine for body shaving with DEs.  Unfortunately, Leaf asks quite a premium over market price for their Astra SPs and wish they would simply provide the razor sans blades at an even lower price but it is what it is.
 
Enough talk, now we shave, eh?!  Hitherto, literally thought it was impossible for anything to shave with less feedback than a Gillette Fusion – ha!  The Leaf absolutely feels as though one is dragging an extremely smooth and contoured metal plate across the skin BUT the shave quality is at least as good as a cartridge razor.  It is amazing how well this razor mows down hair; unlike its cartridge brethren, it never clogs and rinses with ease too.  However, the sheer physical size of the shaving surface that provides some of its comfort no doubt conspires to work against it in tighter nether reaches.  One would be well advised to maintain a second single edge razor of some sort for touch ups in tight areas to complement the Leaf.  Unsurprisingly, Leaf is on the verge of releasing a single edge using halved blades branded as the Twig.  I shall endeavour to have Leaf provide one mid passaround as well as a stand.
 
Long and short, it is easy to see why women love this razor as it is incredibly comfortable and efficient  at removing hair in easily accessed areas such as legs and arms while being inexpensive to feed blades.  Men really should inform their wives/gal pals of this razor and its ability to use their blades for refills – she will adore you for the advice.  Aerobic athletes body shaving for sports activities will love this as much for its abilities as sticking it to the majors taking advantage of oligopolistic pricing power.  For face shaving it is certainly mild if only moderately efficient.  For those with lean, irregular or disfigured faces it is quite difficult to access all the irregularities and tighter confines and even the most symmetrical aesthetically gifted handsome men of normal dimensions will need to rely on the Twig, reverse side of a Gillette Cartridge or DE for finishing touch ups.  But as a body shaver for my intended usage, am definitely keeping this razor in rotation after the passaround concludes.


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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l8_hIgwUQI

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shaveSymptomatic and Ali_R like this post
Just an old slow fat man
#2
Loading is funky but it's a great head shaver, love mine.

Sent from my LG-US998 using Tapatalk

DanLaw likes this post
#3

Member
Peachtree City, GA
(This post was last modified: 05-22-2020, 07:19 PM by DanLaw.)
It excels in open area shaving when seeking brainless, no worries hair removal.  Loading is more involved than any other razor but really quite easy upon viewing the video even once without really paying attention - let's term it novel....

jmudrick likes this post
Just an old slow fat man
#4

Member
Idaho Falls, Idaho
Astra blades huh. Used to ship with Crystals. I quite enjoy the Leaf and two of the ladies in my clan own one

DanLaw likes this post
#5

Member
Peachtree City, GA
Have contacted Leaf. They have generously offered to provide us with a Twig trimmer and chrome stand. In order to facilitate the passaround, am having them ship these products directly to the next trialer. Want to extend our gratitude to both BullGoose and Leaf for their generosity in contributing to this passaround.
Just an old slow fat man
#6

Member
Peachtree City, GA
New Twig edger razor forthcoming from Leaf - we will have a plastic prototype one in by this week but this coming by end of passaround

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Marhos24 likes this post
Just an old slow fat man
#7

Member
Peachtree City, GA
In the interim, we will be using the prototype Twig SE.  Here is the loading instructional video:

https://www.facebook.com/LeafShave/video...367100983/
Just an old slow fat man
#8

Member
Peachtree City, GA
We are getting a new TWIG. Trying to get the passaround people to repost their reviews in the correct thread

Ali_R likes this post
Just an old slow fat man
#9
First, I'd like to thank Dan for the opportunity to try the Leaf razor. I have double edge, single edge, A/C type razors, as well as straight razors. The Leaf razor provided the most comfortable shave. I loaded it with a treet platinum blade and lathered up with Vitos extra shaving soap. That combination worked well for all test shaves. Also, I like the option of using different types of double edge blades. I enjoyed the Leaf mostly for my head shaves, which I do two to three times a week. I did try the razor for a face shave. It worked okay, but I have other razors that I prefer.
I have had my share of problems in the past with cartridge razors, resulting in cortisone shots to aide with ingrown hairs. I was extremely happy that this razor worked as well as it did! In comparison to Harry's cartridge razor, I like the softer feel of the Leaf. A problem I did encounter, no fault of the Leaf razor, is switching over to a double edge razor and not applying too much pressure. My shave consists of three passes wtg, xtg and finishing wtg. The results were always the same, zero irritation. After all was said and done, I ordered a chrome model with stand .

shaveSymptomatic likes this post
#10

Member
NC
Well, I had my shot at the leaf recently and will say this is a real shaving machine, mostly. This razor will mow down whiskers with a smoothness and effortlessness I haven't yet seen. At my first attempt with this razor I shaved the first side of my face and thought wow, is this thing working, but the whiskers were vanishing. Did I say it was smoooooooth. I stuck to my typical three pass routine initially (wtg,xtg,atg). I used my own Astra sp blades in all three slots and MWF soap the whole time. I do have a goatee so for me its cheeks, jaws and neck. No chin or lip shaving. I thought the razor was very efficient. I got really great results in the wide open areas where I shave. After a few shaves in I actually modified my technique or shall we say "concentrated" more on the first two passes and had less stubble left to cut on the final atg pass than with my normal de razor. That being said the razor could cut a tad closer. So with all this efficiency i'm talking up how can this be, right. Well I don't know. It's seems to be the large face (for lack of a better term) of this thing causing me to actually "miss" some of my face, just a little, like below the jaw line were it may not be making full, flat contact with the skin. So now I need to do a little more clean up to get that last little bit and I did pick up a small amount of irritation because of this. No biggie, I get a little irritation with other razors too. With a little more refined technique I could probably do better. There is a bit of a learning curve here. The pivoting head adds another element also. It kind of takes all this handle angle, riding the cap, riding the bar stuff out of the picture. Very easy to use, mostly.
Back to the goatee. For such high praise in the more accessible areas, the leaf does a poor job of edging around stuff. Hence the need for the twig I guess. With the large head or "face" of the leaf you never really know where the actual cutting edge is. This makes any kind of clean cut edges difficult in my limited experience. Like I said, in the wide open areas like heads or legs or body shaving this should be great for that. Super smooth with minimal irritation. Now how about that twig prototype that was included you say. Pretty much worthless for me. Surely it's intention is to do the aformentioned edges were the leaf falls short, but it just wont cut a clean edge. I can get a nice clean edge with a de razor but not this thing. Not enough blade exposure I think. Maybe the production model will work better, I don't know.
Other thoughts... Blade loading is no issue, pretty simple really. No clogging. Good weighty feeling razor. Nice chrome. Nice stand. Good value for the dollar I think. The handle is way to long and feminine, unless you like that kind of thing. The grip could be better. The triangle shape of the grip kind of locks you in to a grip style you may or may not like. The head pivot spring could be a little stronger I think. Minor personal gripes really. Bottom line is I like it and with some more practice I could master this thing and do well with it except for the edging issue. If your on the fence I say go for it.
HUGE thanks to Dan. I appreciate the effort he puts into these passarounds, procuring the products, keeping up with who's got it, all the product details including the pictures, all the other madness we take for granted, etc.,etc.,etc.


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