Monday, February 15, 2016

Unrequited Love for the Gillette Slim

UPDATE: Since the publication of this article, I have reconciled with my Slim. You can read that article here.  

Now I know how the girlfriend of a psychopath feels. I keep trying to love the Gillette Slim Adjustable razor, but it just won't love me back. I keep thinking it's me; but it's not.

My 1963 Slim Adjustable
Two days ago, with the Slim set to four (of nine, where nine is maximally aggressive and one is maximally mild) and a tenth-shave SuperMax Titanium blade, I got a good shave. Encourged by this, I went to the well again the next day.

Common denominator between
Vincent Price and my Slim?
Yesterday I set the Slim to three using the same blade -- this time its eleventh shave -- and, strangely, the shave was more irritating with too many annoying weepers.

So thinking it was the blade, I put in a new Dorco ST-301, set the Slim to two, and went at it again this morning.

Like in a bad Vincent Price knock-off movie (are there any good ones?) -- horrors! -- weepers and irritation galore! This shave today was so irritating, that two-thirds through, I took the blade out of the Slim and put it into my Merkur 15C open-comb razor and finished the shave.

No wonder my dad switched from the Slim to the Gillette's Trac II. The Gillette Slim Adjustable just doesn't consistently work for me, and I'm guessing was far from optimal for him as well.

I can get an okay standard shave (one pass with the grain), but when I go for a good shave.... forget about it.

Well, some matches just aren't made in heaven. And keeping with the Vincent Price theme, some are made in hell. So the Slim has gone back into cold storage like on a slab at the morgue. I'm done. It's dead to me.

The Merkur 15C open-comb classic has become my go-to razor,
when I'm looking for a trouble-free shave with a new blade.

Happy shaving!


  1. I've always wanted to try the slim but I've found that the 1970 superspeed I have is just working so well I haven't bothered to dust off any other razors. It's just a tad less aggressive than my Early Tech and is so much more forgiving.

  2. Yep, Tech and SS for me, too -- and I did a Slim like Doug's at the same time as the black-handled SS, from under the same sink, I was told. I think we have a consensus.

    The lingering doubt in my mind is, could the later Super Adjustables (black handled), said to be calibrated differently, bridge the difference between the Tech and SS?