You don’t want to drag a dull razor across your face when you are lathered up and ready to shave. In addition to preventing a close, clean shave, worn-out razor blades can cause razor burn as well. It’s important that you change your razor blades often enough to ensure your razor doesn’t irritate your skin, or worse, cause cuts, nicks, ingrown hairs, and infections. Do you wonder when you should replace your razor blades? So, when should you change your razor? After all, no one wants to shave with a blunt blade.
How Often Should You Change Your Razor Blades?
According to Jessie Cheung, MD, a board certified dermatologist and founder of Cheung Aesthetics & Wellness.
“The quality of your blade and the amount and thickness of hair will all contribute to how quickly your blade dulls. If your razor sits in the shower, it will also rust and collect more bacteria. So, try to switch out your razor at least after every 5-7 shaves, but sooner if you see buildup that doesn’t rinse clean,” says Cheung.
If you maintain a high level of cleanliness and take care of your razor blades, you can expect them to last for five to seven shaves. Cheap disposable razors will wear out sooner, however.
A irritated skin after shaving, a less close shave, patchy areas or spots missed, rough skin after shaving, dull razor blades, a feeling that hairs are being pulled instead of cut, and excessive friction between the blades as you shave that makes you feel like you have to drag them over your skin are signs that it's time to change your razor blades.
In addition, razors with unrinseable gunk should be discarded immediately, as they may cause nicks and infections when they drag unevenly across your skin and introduce bacteria into your pores.
What Determines How Often You Should Change Your Razor Blades?
Razor blades should be replaced every five to seven shaves, but there are four primary factors that determine their longevity.
- The Quality of the Razor Blades--There is almost always a connection between the quality of the razor blades and how often you should change them. When you wet a cheaper razor blade, the lubricating gel strips appear dry or patchy, which is one of the first signs that it needs to be replaced.
- The Thickness and Density of Your Hair--A thicker and denser head of hair usually requires you to replace your razor blade sooner because it wears out more quickly.
- The Surface Area You are Shaving--If you shave more surface area, your razor blades will wear out faster.
- How Well You Clean Your Razor-- When shaving, you should always use a lubricant, such as shaving cream or gel. This will prolong the life of the gel strip in the razor, and will ensure the razor blades glide over your skin rather than dragging.