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Are safety razors cheaper?

Are safety razors cheaper?

We all know that whether it’s shaving your stubbly chin, your legs or those weird stray hairs that popup on your shoulders (for me anyway), staying smooth can be a chore!

That being said, if you have some time and a nice, aromatic shaving soap then getting rid of some stray hairs can be a relaxing and enjoyable experience! 

Whatever your view is on shaving, I think we can all agree that we would prefer it to be cheap!

In this guide, we’re going to set aside the other benefits of using one method of shaving or another and focus solely on cost! Which method of shaving is the most expensive, and which is the least?

We all know by now that safety razors are the most eco-friendly shaving solution, but will they be proven to be the cheapest as well?

It’s also common knowledge that disposable razors are insanely wasteful, but who knows, they may be cheaper than we think!

As always, the Jungle Culture team will do our best to give an impartial view of the shaving landscape, but if you think we’ve written some incorrect details, or misquoted a price, write to us in the comments and we’ll review your suggestions and if we find any mistakes, we’ll correct our article!

What method of shaving is the cheapest?

We’re going to assume that everybody reading this article uses one of three methods to shave:

  1. Safety razors
  2. Electric razors
  3. Disposable razors

We have elected to ignore cut throat or straight razors because from a cost perspective they are largely equal to safety razors in terms of the price of the original razor base and the replacement blades.

We’re also going to exclude alternative forms of shaving, but as a side note, here is an interesting guide to shaving with a knife. (Please note: Jungle Culture does not in any way recommend shaving with a knife)

Is using an electric razor cheaper?

According to Statista around 20-25% of men use electric razors to shave. Making them one of the most common ways to shave in the world.

Now, without a doubt, shaving using an electric razor carries the biggest upfront cost with electric razors reaching up to £300.00 on Amazon. But do you need a £300 razor to achieve a smooth shave? Probably not.

Upfront costs:

Amazon’s best selling electric razor with above 4.5 stars will set you back £50.00, so it’s completely plausible and reasonable to say that if you are going to buy an electric razor, this is roughly what you’ll spend.

A recent article from consumer spending review site “Which” estimated that most electric razors last from 12-18 months. We’re going to be generous and say that your electric razor will last for 2 years.

Total= £50.00

Ongoing costs:

The razor head, which should be replaced roughly once per year depending on the amount you shave, will cost £28.00.

To operate an electric razor, you will obviously need electricity, but nowadays electric razors are incredibly efficient, so we’re estimating that the electricity costs related to shaving with an electric razor are around £0.01/per shave.

Total = £28.00 + £0.01/per shave

Total cost breakdown:

Assuming that our hypothetical shaver uses their electric razor twice per week and replaces their razor head once during the 2 year lifespan of their electric razor the cost per shave would be:

Total shaves in 2 years = 208
Total outlay in 2 years = £80.02
Cost per shave = £0.38

Electric Razors FAQ:

Here are some things to consider when choosing an electric razor:

Q: Do electric razors shave as close as manuals?

According to tests from an independent blog article, electric razors still do not provide as close of a shave as manual razors.

Q: Do electric razors cause more or less skin irritation?

Every razor and every person is different, so it’s semi-impossible to accurately answer this question. However, based on our research some people report a higher level of skin irritation when using an electric razor. There are however numerous help guides that promise to help you keep skin irritation to an absolute minimum!

Q: Are electric razors faster?

If you’re in a rush, electric shaving might be the way to go according to this article which tests different types of razors according to sheer speed!

are electric razors cheaper

Electric razors pros & cons:


  • Speed, speed, speed
  • You only need to buy a replacement blade once per year
  • Better at managing beard lengths


  • Can't be used in the shower. Here is an article which explains whether shaving before or after the shower is better.
  • Expensive upfront costs
  • Too many models means that it’s difficult to know which razor is the best
  • Doesn’t shave as close as manual alternatives

Is using a disposable razor cheaper?

By far, the current reigning world heavyweight champion of shaving, we give you… the disposable cartridge razor!

Available in (almost) any supermarket, pharmacy and convenience mart in the world, the disposable razor came to prominence in the early 20th century, took hold of the shaving world and never let go!

Given that the disposable razor is by far the world’s most popular shaving choice, one would assume that it’s also the cheapest! Would we be correct to assume that? Let’s see!

Upfront costs:

There are two types of disposable razor widely available on the market today.

  • The cartridge razor
  • The disposable razor

The latest cartridge razor at the time of writing this article is the Gillette Fusion 5. The cheapest price we found for the razor base (including 1 blade) was £12.00 from Tesco.

Meanwhile, a pack of disposable BIC razors from Tesco will cost just £2.00 and includes 10 razors.

Total costs = £12.00 (Gillette), £2.00 (BIC)

Ongoing costs:

Replacement blades for the Gillette Fusion 5 cost a whopping £21.00 for a pack of 5! That works out at a mind-boggling £4.20/per blade… More than double the price of a pack of 10 BIC razors and almost half the price of an electric razor that lasts for 2 years. 

Based on our research, a BIC razor will last anywhere from 2-3 shaves before needing to be replaced, whilst a Gilette razor blade can last around 5-6 shaves.

It must be said that if you’re willing to buy a razor sharpener for £16, then you can increase the longevity of your disposable razor blades by roughly 20-30%.

Here is a video tutorial that teaches you exactly how to sharpen your disposable razor blades: Video tutorial

Total costs = £21.00/per 30 shaves (Gillette), £2.00/per 30 shaves (BIC)

Total cost breakdown:

Again, assuming that our hypothetical beard / leg trimmer uses their razor twice a week for a period of two years, let’s see how much shaving with a disposable razor will cost:


Total shaves in 2 years = 208
Total outlay in 2 years (assuming 3 shaves per razor) = £14.00 (approx)
Cost per shave = £0.07 (approx)


Total shaves in 2 years = 208
Total outlay in 2 years (assuming 6 shaves per razor) = £159.00
Cost per shave = £0.76 (approx)

Breaking down the costs, it appears that whether disposable razors are cheap or expensive depends entirely on the brand. It also has to be mentioned that although BIC razors may be extremely cheap, they are also extremely bad for the environment and let’s face it, they just don’t give a good shave!

Disposable razors FAQ:

Q: Are disposable razors recyclable? 

Although some disposable razors can be recycled by specialist recycling companies such as Terracycle, the vast majority of disposable razors and cartridges are not recycled and companies such as Terracycle are sadly limited to a few select locations. Meaning that broadly speaking, disposable razors are not recyclable in any practical way!

The lack of recycling has meant that in the US alone, an estimated 2 billion razors are discarded every single year. That’s a lot of plastic entering our oceans…

Q: Are more blades better?

The date is 2050 and Gillette has just released their new Gillette Pluto 15 blade razor. This sounds like a wacky prediction, but who would’ve thought that we needed 5 blades/per cartridge. Is it really necessary?

The answer is no. There is little to no independent evidence that shaving with a multi-blade razor is better than a single blade razor. Research has found that multi blade razors do indeed pick up more hair in a single stroke, but they are also responsible for more ingrown hairs and skin irritation. Source = Click me

Q: How do I know when I should change blades?

Generally, you should change blades when the razor becomes dull and starts to tug at your skin, for more advice check out this guide.

Disposable razors pros and cons:


  • Easily purchased almost anywhere in the world
  • Easy to use
  • Close shave if you choose a good model


  • Terrible for the environment
  • Extortionately expensive if you choose a brand name
  • Low quality shave if you choose a cheap model

Is using a safety razor cheaper?

The traditional choice! The safety razor was first popularised in the early 1900’s when Gillette issued them to the U.S. armed forces during World War 1. Safety razors dominated the shaving industry and were seen as an evolution on the even more traditional cut throat razor, until eventually they were replaced by disposable razors which were potentially seen as a more profitable alternative!

Today safety razors are making a resurgence, propelled by their stylish appearance and eco-credentials. Jungle Culture’s selection of reusable razors range from bamboo razors to women’s safety razors and everywhere in between!

But are safety razors cheaper than disposable razors? Are safety razors cheaper than electric razors? Let’s find out!

Upfront costs:

Although you can find antique safety razors for more than £100, a typical safety razor will cost anywhere from £15 - £50 depending on where it’s made and where it’s being sold.

Our range of reusable razors all cost between £18-19 with the most common price being £18.00.

Since Jungle Culture offers a 5-year warranty with all of our reusable razors, the initial cost will be spread over at least a 5 year period.

Total costs= £18.00

Ongoing costs:

The initial outlay for a reusable safety razor is slightly higher than disposable alternatives, but the ongoing costs are significantly cheaper!

At Jungle Culture, you can purchase 10 safety razor blades for £3.99 or if you buy in bulk from Derby (the manufacturer), you can purchase 100 blades for £5.99.

Safety razor blades can be used for around 8 -10 shaves depending on how coarse your hair is. You can also increase the lifespan of your razor blades using a razor blade sharpener.

Total costs = £5.99/per 1,000 shaves

Total cost breakdown:

If we continue to assume that our hairy hypothetical human is trimming twice a week for a period of two years, let’s see how much they spend: 

Total shaves in 2 years = 208
Total outlay in 2 years (assuming 10 shaves per razor) = £23.99
Cost per shave = £0.11 (approx)

Let’s also note, that in the above example the shaver will only use 21 of the 100 blades that they purchased, meaning that midway through year 3, using a safety razor will surpass BIC razors as the cheapest method of shaving.

In fact, after 5 years (when your safety razor warranty expires), the total cost per shave will sit, incredibly, at just£0.046and you would still have 48 razor blades remaining!!!

Safety razors FAQ:

Q: Are safety razors difficult to use?

Let’s remember that prior to the invention of disposable razors (1960s), safety razors were commonly used by everyone around the world. If they were so difficult to use, then how were we all shaving? In fact, we’ve made it even simpler by creating an all encompassing help article to teach everyone how to use a safety razor

Q: Are safety razor blades recyclable?

Safety razor blades can be recycled quite simply in some countries, whilst other countries do not have sufficiently good recycling infrastructure. Check our guide on how to recycle safety razor blades for the latest advice in your country.

Q: Are safety razor blades universal?

In most cases, yes. However, there are some exceptions. If you’re using a Jungle Culture safety razor then any double-edged blade will fit, but for a full and extensive look at which safety razor blades will fit your razor. Check out our blog.

Safety razors pros and cons:


  • Extremely cheap, especially in the long term
  • Provides a close, clean shave
  • Completely unisex
  • Different designs make it easy to choose a razor to match your tastes


  • Slight learning curve
  • Blades are not as readily available as disposable razors
  • Blades cannot be taken on a plane

is using a safety razor cheaper


Having looked at all methods of shaving, it’s clear that on a per shave basis BIC razors are the cheapest way to shave in the short term! In the long term however, safety razors are far, far cheaper than any other method of shaving + they are extremely environmentally friendly when compared to disposable razors!

We hope this handy cost analysis has helped you make an informed shaving decision and we look forward to reading all of your comments below! Until next time!

1 Response



October 11, 2023

Yes, I feel it as helped me with my understanding of safety razors. I have always wanted to know and just like it mentioned in the article. I have always been drawn to the design. I found the base so I’m ahead there. I am a staunch believer in recycling and re-using. I plan to sanitize it and then buy the blades.

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