Interested in Dollar Shave Club? Check it out for yourself here (http://shaved.by/cHWH8). If you sign up from that link, I also get a $5 referral credit to my account. Win-win, right?
Over the past several months, I’ve seen ads occasionally on Facebook for Dollar Shave Club. The idea is pretty simple: you subscribe and they send you four razor cartridges a month so that you can switch out blades frequently, without the hassle of going to a store to buy them and at cheaper prices than many other disposable razor brands. For anybody who shaves regularly, it’s not a bad plan. You can select from three different tiers, based on your budget and shaving preference.
Normally, I wouldn’t care much for such a service, as I’m fairly easy to please regarding the grooming of facial hair. My hair grows fairly slowly, so I don’t have to shave often; maybe 2 to 3 times a week as my stubble fills in. Furthermore, I’ll use a disposable razor until it’s nearly too dull to cut butter, so a monthly subscription delivering a blade a week is far more frequent than anything I would need.
After months of seeing these ads for Dollar Shave Club and completely dismissing them, I eventually decided to look more into it. The razor I had been using for months was dull enough to make shaving an unpleasant experience, and I didn’t have any more stockpiled to switch out. I did some research and polled some friends, all of which had nothing but positive things to say about DSC (as it will be abbreviated for the remainder of this post). Plus, I was alerted by a recent subscriber that shipments can be slowed to once every other month, and postponed for three months at a time as necessary.
Mulling the idea over with my wife, she inquired if they might be decent for women as well. Sure enough, DSC markets their razors as good for anyone. With two people using the razors, and only getting a shipment every other month, that would give us 1 razor per person per month. Not a bad idea at all. Additionally, this would encourage me to change out blades more regularly, and ensure a more pleasant shaving experience for myself.
Once we decided that we should sign up for DSC, we had to figure out details. First, we would need to select a tier. Both of us had previously used only 3 or 4-blade razors, which both of us were completely fine with. However, a few friends highly recommended that we opt for the 6-blade tier instead, for the vastly superior shaving experience. Since DSC doesn’t penalize for changing plans between shipments, there would be no issue with us signing up in one tier and immediately switching to the other in order to try both. This left the question, however, which tier should we start on?
Any time DSC subscribers switch tiers, the company includes the appropriate handle with the following shipment. I pondered that our best bet would be to start on the 4-blade tier, switch immediately to the 6-blade tier, and then fall back to the 4-blade tier with shipments every other month. The worst outcome of this scenario would be that DSC doesn’t ship us another 4-blade handle when we switched back and we simply buy one for $4 if the 6-blade handle isn’t compatible. Best case would be that we do get handles with both changes and that both blades are compatible, such that we each have our own handle and an extra for travel or in the event that we lose a handle.
I wanted to be a good friend and use someone’s referral link so that they would get a $5 credit toward their account, but my lack of patience and the inability of my friends to retrieve their codes quickly meant I just signed up from the normal URL. Setup was super easy, and I was informed that we would be receiving our first shipment in a few days.
As promised, a package turned up in our mailbox a few days later. Within the box was the handle, the package of blades, a demo container of DSC’s shaving gel, and a flyer about the program. Apparently, DSC is known for witty phrases and clever marketing campaigns, which contributes to the overall appeal of the service. The sleeve of blade cartridges read, “Slice: Good for tennis, bad for faces.” Heh, how droll.
I loaded a cartridge onto the handle and replaced my old, dull razor in the shower with it. Originally, I planned on shaving the next day before work, but I woke up late and didn’t have time to shave. The following morning, however, I got up on time. One thing that immediately stuck out about the razor, the head is angled much closer to the handle than the razors I’ve used most recently. My previous razor head was much closer to perpendicular with the handle, while the DSC head is only slightly angled back from the contour of the blade. The blades themselves are plenty sharp enough to give a close shave with little drag. Even with the adjustment to a different angled head, I was able to shave very quickly and missed very few spots without the aid of a mirror.
A few days later when I had built up enough stubble to shave again, I tried out the sample of gel that shipped with the handle and blades. Normally, I shave in the shower without any gel or lubrication, simply because it saves time and my skin isn’t tremendously sensitive. The gel had a texture very similar to hair conditioner, and went on more like a cream than any lathering gel I’ve been accustomed to. Once applied, it was particularly difficult to wash the gel off my hands, which I suppose is a good thing for keeping it on my face until I shave it off. The gel made a noticeable difference in the quality of the shave, both allowing me a closer shave and giving far less drag across my skin. Again, this is coming from someone who rarely uses any sort of shaving gel or cream, but it very much accomplishes what is advertised.
Visiting with a friend who is a DSC subscriber with the 6-blade tier, he let me take a look at the razor while I was over. Obviously, I didn’t have my own razor with me to compare directly, but the connection between the handle and cartridge looked absolutely identical. I can confirm later when I get my own 6-blade handle and cartridge, but I’m 90% certain the middle and top tier handles and cartridges are interchangeable. Stay tuned for updates there.
Overall, I’m very pleased with my first month of DSC. The products are of good quality, the packaging is both clever and functional, and I think the price is perfectly reasonable. Obviously, there are cheaper ways to obtain similar products, and what I think about the style of razor may not be what everyone thinks of it. At best, it’s an easy way to have shaving equipment shipped to your door without hassle. At worst, the razors just aren’t for you and you can easily cancel your membership. I’d fully recommend DSC to anyone who grows hair they’d like to remove with a blade.
As I mentioned at the beginning of the post, DSC offers a referral bonus when anyone signs up with the personalized link of a current subscriber. My link is listed below. If any of you are curious about the program, I’d greatly appreciate if you would check it out with my link. Every one of you that signs up gives a $5 credit to my account.
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