DE Razor Review: Astra Superior Platinum

Astra Scaled.jpg

As much as I would love to stick with the Derby’s, I shall persevere in my quest for the perfect blade.

This weeks blade is the Astra Superior Platinum.

In terms of shaving quality, the blade does OK. The result is a good clean shave without a lot of drama.

The blade does, however, pull a bit more than either the Derby or the Feather. It doesn’t necessarily feel that dull, it just pulls a bit and leaves the skin of my face ever so slightly irked at the whole experience.

Disturbingly, the blade is pulling significantly more after an only a few days of shaving than I would expect. At this point, the longevity of the Astra looks pretty short.

Even if the blade provided an excellent quality shave, I would still be looking for a different blade with as good or better results.

Why?

Because the Astra’s packaging just flat out sucks.

The blades come in 5 packs tucked away in little boxes. Not that big of a deal, but not nearly as convenient as the plastic boxes that typically have a used blade slot on the backside.

The real failure of the packaging is in how the blades are wrapped. DE razor blades are typically (always?) wrapped in wax paper or some other water resistant substance to prevent corrosion of the blade.

The Astras are wrapped in not one, but two, layers of waxy paper. Wasteful and annoying. Worse still, the inner wrapper is actually glued to the damned blade!

If you look closely at the scan of the blade to the left, you can see the four glue splotches on the blade (and that was after I had actually scraped the glue off a little bit)!

The glue is a sort of rubber cement — feels kinda like the glue on post-it notes — and, yes, it does collect gunk while shaving.

By the end of the week, the shave from this blade was nothing short of unpleasant. I had flipped the blade to glue side down to get a fresh edge that the quality of the shave was even worse than the other side. Looking at the image, the glue splotches are actually covering parts of the sharp edge and I have to wonder if that degrades the shave significantly.

In any case, this blade was better than the Personna, but that isn’t saying much.



4 Responses to “DE Razor Review: Astra Superior Platinum”

  1. Myshkin says:

    I wasn’t aware that anyone on the planet still used these antiquated devices. 🙂 Have you never tried a Trac II or its descendants?

  2. bbum says:

    Heh. Yes — I tried the Trac II and some Gillette multi-blade silliness. Shave quality sucks in comparison to a competently executed DE safety razor shave.

  3. Steve Loranz says:

    I switched to a Merkur Futur adjustable a couple of years ago and just kept using the Merkur blades until reading your post about the Feather blades a couple of days ago. They just arrived, so tomorrow morning I’ll get to try them out.

    My neighbor gave me a nice straight razor from the box of supplies his grandfather, who was a barber, left him. I might actually disinfect it, hone the blade, and try integrating it into my shaving schedule before the year end…

  4. bbum’s weblog-o-mat » Blog Archive » DE Razor Review: Wilkinson Sword Classic says:

    […] This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License. Amazon.com Widgets « DE Razor Review: Astra Superior Platinum […]

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