San Jose, California
TLDR - Skip to Actual Impressions

Well, not really first.

My first go with Merkur blade, was back in 2015, when, like most newbies, I got a sampler pack. I don't think I finished a single shave with it back then, threw them away, marking them as "too dull for my tough coarse beard". I revisited them in late 2016/early 2017, still found them not so good, kinda tuggy. The shave was not enjoyable at all. Last night, while going through my blade storage, I found one solitary Merkur blade, wrapped in wax paper, with close to 0 hope of being used.

In the last two years, I have had this recurring thought that lots of product I used earlier in my shaving days and marked as not appropriate for my "tough coarse beard, ultra-sensitive skin" were actually pretty good. I simply didn't have a good technique back then, I emphasized less on beard prep and mapping. So I always wanted to revisit some of those. Now, after 4 years of shaving, keeping notes, talking to people, being engaged in a hobby - my technique is still improving (at least I believe so), but it has reached a point where I can truly appreciate a product for what it is - my personal imperfections can't hinder a product's working, at least not as much as it used to. That led to today's shave.

My skin is going through a rough patch - suffering from worse than ordinary dryness. So I decided to add some GD preshave to my routine (this is an excellent product, but that is a topic for a separate discussion). I showered in the morning, so it was just a regular washing of face followed by pre-shave. Black Fern is a wonderful scent, I will most probably get a full tub. But the performance of the soap, while adequate, is not really that great. It is average in most areas, except for ease of lathering - it is very easy to lather. Karve(D plate) is a fine razor, but not one of my favourites. I like it, but I don't love it. I guess what I am saying is that I didn't really create an easy battlefield for Merkur to win me over. (skipped shower, average (for me) soap, razor).
Actual Impressions

So, how was the shave? I didn't go full crazy and test post-shave burn using an alum block or alcohol-based aftershave as my skin is extra dry these days. But, the shave was flawless. Super comfortable, no tugging, no pulling, no friction. Just good smooth effortless shave. I guess I would consider these blades to be a bit milder than what I regularly use (Wizamet Iridium Super). But I bet in a good razor (and of course good hand ) it is sharp enough for a well prepared tough/coarse bread (I should mention that I had a 1-day growth, I should probably try multiple day growth later this week). I must say that I am shocked.

Now, am I going to buy 100s of these? No. Because I have a lifetime supply of DE blades already. Plus I still think my other blades are better suited for a consistently closer shave. But I would absolutely understand if someone says they are in love with this blade. (And I will probably doubt any overly harsh opinion of these blades, but YMMV I know YMMV, but still). I think these blades are a bit sharper than Derby, on a completely hypothetical scale of 1 to 10 (10 would be a Feather or a Personna 74), I would say these are 4. Maybe 3.5.

GD Lavender Pre-shave, AP Shaveco Brush, LASSCO Black Fern, Karve(D), Merkur Blade, Chatillon Lux TSM Fougere Salve.

Everything purchased with my own money.

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wyze0ne and Lipripper660 like this post

Idaho Falls, Idaho
Great report Sourav. You almost convince me to try Murkur again. Hey, I'll resist but perhaps if a lone blade rolls through I'll give it a go but they'll get no money from me.

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