Safety razor in Montreal
November 18, 2006 9:31 AM   Subscribe

I've been hyped by all these threads about safety razor and decided that I was gonna stop buying cheap disposable razor and use one of those instead.

Where can I find a store of such supplies in downtown Montreal or around downtown.
posted by PowerCat to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total)
If you are looking for an old-school safety razor, the blades are easy to come by (at least in my part of the US), but I had a hard time finding a razor.
I finally located one online at
All-stainless steel, made in Germany by Solingen, gives the best shave ever.
posted by lawhound at 9:48 AM on November 18, 2006

I don't have a suggestion but I was in a similar position in Toronto 2 years back or so. I found that Holt Renfrew and other "fine" men's shops carried them, but they were 40 - 60 percent more than they are online so I just ended up purchasing from this from here.

Blades can be found at various drug stores (Shoppers has some) and some Loblaw's as well, but they aren't nearly as good as the razors that came with the unit. I suggest that if you purchase online you buy a shitload or blades at the same time.
posted by dobbs at 9:52 AM on November 18, 2006

I don't know Toronto, but my blogroll lists quite a few vendors who sell via the Internet. And you might want to check out my post of general advice on shaving with a safety razor.
posted by LeisureGuy at 11:26 AM on November 18, 2006 [1 favorite]

Sorry: meant Montreal. I do know the difference. :) The vendors in the blogroll are under "shaving," natch.
posted by LeisureGuy at 11:29 AM on November 18, 2006

Check flea markets and second hand shops. Back in the day, the razors were sturdy, solid brass and steel, and sold by the millions before multiblade razors took over the market. They're nuke proof. I got an excellent metal-handle Gillette adjustable razor for US$3, and although it was obviously used for years it's still barely worn and only needed some dried soap washed out.

That said, I went back to my three-blade razor. The biggest improvement was in learning how to apply soap with a brush. Experimenting with razors didn't improve my shaving noticeably and safety razors required too much care to prevent nicking.
posted by ardgedee at 12:14 PM on November 18, 2006

Just wanted to point out that LeisureGuy is a very wise man. I've used his post as a template for my own experimentation and it's worked very well.

(Sadly, I recently switched to electric to save time. Safety blade shaving is the best, unless you go straight blade, but it's extremely time consuming. I will say this, though: it was a painful switch to the electric and I am not thrilled with the results. I have to shave everyday to maintain the level of closeness that a safety blade gave me when I was shaving every couple of days.)
posted by SeizeTheDay at 12:54 PM on November 18, 2006

As a matter of interest, I clocked my shave this morning because I was curious about what the actual time was. Although I felt I was shaving leisurely, the time was 11 minutes. So with practice, the amount of time spent declines---though probably not to the point of an electric shave. (Some shave in the evening so that they don't have to spend the time in the morning.)
posted by LeisureGuy at 1:10 PM on November 18, 2006

Response by poster: Thanks for all your answers. I guess I'll pretty much have to buy it off!
LeisureGuy, thanks for your blog, I'll check it out when I'm ready to shave!
posted by PowerCat at 2:06 PM on November 18, 2006

Take a look at the recommendations regarding beginning starter kit (which razor, blade, brush, etc.). Might be helpful. Good luck. It's a great way to turn a chore into something you enjoy and look forward to.
posted by LeisureGuy at 2:41 PM on November 18, 2006

There's a place on St-Catherine st. on the north side of the street between de la Montagne and Peel that caters to to your need. From the outside it looks like a tobacconist but inside it you quickly realize it's a gentleman's store. They have a full gamut of safety razors, straight blades and tons of accessories. Don't be put off by the ultra-high end stuff the sell, there's also low to middle end stuff there as well. Sorry I can't remember the name, but I was just in there last weekend.
posted by furtive at 3:30 PM on November 18, 2006

PowerCat - I am almost 100% certain you can find safety razors in one of the boutiques at Ogilvie's downtown. I think it's the one on the main floor on the left (as you walk in off Ste-Catherine) about half way or 2/3 towards the back. If it's not there, check the same relative location one floor down ;->
posted by mikel at 3:32 PM on November 18, 2006

Couple quick things about this:
- You can buy vintage safety razors that like the shaveblog dude goes nuts over for $5 on ebay. Don't go downtown and spend $100 on some ridiculous Merkur nonsense at Sir Krumptington's Facery. I don't really know how hot to trot one can get about scraping the hair off one's face, but they'll deliver in like two days.
- You can buy DE blades at the deli.
- After spending an embarassing amount of time and not a little money on this 'hobby', I've come to the conclusion that there's a reason men shifted from safety razors to modern razors over the years: modern razors, like mach3s, are vastly superior.
- That said, all the hoity-toity shaving creams and stuff do vastly increase overall shave quality. I'm like Little Lord Fauntleroy when I get into my shave kit these days. I'll never use that Edge gel crap again. It's ridiculous. I think most of these shavegeeks on the dubs fail to separate the 'shaving products' from the 'shaving blade style' when they post these 'classic shaving' threads.
- When the boosters are bragging about 11 minute shaves, you've got to wonder. Think to yourself how much of your life you want to dedicate to the depilatory arts. If this routine adds six minutes to your daily shave, you're looking at three months over an eighty year life dedicated to making second passes with your 50s shaving tekmology.

I don't say this as one of those 'the future is good' type dudes. I own many goods, purchased at considerable expense, that contain vacuum tubes. I've been known to home-cure meat products. I'm wearing some old-ass jeans RIGHT NOW. If you take one thing away from this post, please don't invest a bunch of money in this up front, spend the extra six minutes a day savoring some sottocenere.
posted by jeb at 6:51 PM on November 18, 2006 [1 favorite]

Minor correction: I wasn't bragging, just stating the results of timing. And 11 minutes of enjoyment is (IMHO) superior to 5 minutes of routine. YMMV, of course. Fortunately, there's room for all approaches and opinions in this arena.
posted by LeisureGuy at 2:16 PM on November 19, 2006

Oh, and regarding the superiority of the Mach 3 to the safety razor. Here's an interesting report: the guy did use a Mach 3, then switched to safety razors for a while. On a trip home, he forgot his safety razor but did have his Mach 3 there, and since it had been perfectly satisfactory in terms of shaving (he had switched only because he liked gadgets and also wanted to spend less on blades), he thought he'd give it a go. And then...
posted by LeisureGuy at 2:26 PM on November 19, 2006

Interesting story: person uses circumstantial evidence to prove something is better then something else.
posted by oxford blue at 8:01 PM on November 19, 2006

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