This is a guest post from Matthew Paulson. Matthew writes about money on his blog, Getting Green. While I save money on shaving by using water rather than shaving cream or gel, Matthew has another idea.
I noticed that my razor was getting dull the other day, so I did what everyone does and went to Wal-Mart and picked up whatever happened to look good at the time. I didn’t really think about the cost because it was something that I needed and would have to buy it anyway, but when I swiped it through the self-checkout line, those were some expensive razor blades. $11 for a set Fusion blades, ouch! I decided that there has to be a better way to shave without spending so much, so I did some research.
The first thing that you need to do is look for any free razor offers that you can. There’s no better price than free. You won’t find good free razors all the time, but quite often Gillette and Shick will offer free razors in hopes that you’ll stick with the brand and buy additional blades at a huge markup in the near future. If you have a few minutes of spare time, go over to Google and search for free razors, and see what you can find. Use a few different variations of your name to get a few free razors.
There’s the question of cheap razors versus the name brand razors to settle as well. I’ve personally noticed that a high quality Gillette razor blade will last about five times as long as the generic plastic razors with two blades. Usually I go for a name-brand because the disposable razors seem to have this nasty habit of cutting me and I don’t have to change razors nearly as often.
You can make your razors last longer if you take good care of them. If you shave in the shower, don’t leave your razor in the shower. Steam in the shower will cause your blade to become dull and less useful. If you can store your razor outside of your bathroom, you can nearly double the life of your razor blade. Be sure to keep them away from your wife or room-mate so they don’t borrow your razor.
If regular razors are the best option for you, don’t automatically go for the refills. Because the razor manufacturers want you to switch to their brand and razors, it’s sometimes cheaper to buy a new razor (with starter blades) than to buy refills.
In the same light, always take the free razor offers when available. When a new model razor debuts, it’s fairly easy to get these for free.
When you do have to buy new razor blades, changes are you can save a lot of money by shopping for razor blades on eBay. Even after shipping usually you’ll save quite a bit of money over heading down to the local big box store.
For more ideas for saving money, visit Matthew Paulson’s blog, Getting Green.
Published or updated April 4, 2007.