Thursday, 5 February 2015

Thomas Clipper Mark One razor

I'm finally getting around to writing this, having been one of the first people (I was Order #2) to order a razor from brand new London-based company Thomas Clipper last year.

Thomas Clipper make classic double-edged single blade razors with solid stainless steel handles for balance.  The brand was brought to my attention in late 2014, and I was keen to try their products, so when they began trading I ordered a Mark One razor with frankincense shaving oil and organic cotton flannel.

So, the first thing that may strike you about this is that it seems quite expensive.  £65 for a razor?  That's a lot of money!  (Although it is possible to buy just the Mark One razor, without the oil and flannel, for only £49.)  However, when I received my order and looked inside the presentation box I could see straight away why it costs as much as it does.

This thing is about as far removed from a cheap, flimsy, plastic disposable razor as it's possible to get.  The build quality is fantastic, and you can tell the attention to detail which has gone into the design and manufacturer of the product the second you pick it up; unlike the scratchy weightlessness of a cheap plastic razor, the Thomas Clipper Mark One has a solid weight to it which belies quality craftsmanship, and yet feel perfectly balanced in your hand.  You may feel you're paying a lot for the razor, but it's a high-end product which will definitely last you years and years.  (Obviously you'll need to replace the blade fairly often – although the Mark One does come with a box of ten blades to start you off – but that is a much smaller concern.)

Also included in the price is a bottle of frankincense shaving oil, and an organic cotton flannel.  A good shave is as much about the preparation as it is about actually shaving, and these extras come beautifully presented along with the Mark One razor itself.

In action, the Mark One feels easy to use; the razor glides rather than drags across the skin (again, this is partly down to preparation – I'm using the Thomas Clipper's shaving oil along with Proraso shaving cream and a Wilkinson's Sword shaving brush which probably needs replacing) and the perfect balance between the razor's head and its handle makes shaving feel effortless.

Overall, I would say that the Mark One is definitely worth what you pay for it.  Thomas Clipper have done an excellent job in making a razor which is well-built and feels nice to use, which is good for your skin (traditional single blade razors are better for you than more modern designs), and which makes you feel like you own something special, hand-crafted, worth having and which will serve you well for many years to come.

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