The Leaf Razor review

Wayne

Forum Sod
I'm putting this here because I do not consider the Leaf a Cartridge Razor. Yes Technically it isn't but it kind of is, and isn't. Oh I don't know! Is it any good? Yes.
I'll begin with the dimensions. It's long, really long, think of your longest handle, this is longer. Here it is compered to my longest DE the Wolfman WR1.
IMG_2289.JPG

It, as we all know by now, takes 1.5 DE blades snapped in half and inserted into caddys in the head. It is a really cool design, no doubt there, a lot of Engineerring has gone into the concept of this razor, the blades fit easily and securely into the sprung head which pivots similar to a One Blade if you are familiar with that or if not many, many cartridge razors.
IMG_2293.JPG

Here is the head design
IMG_2291.JPG

Once installed the blades are held securely in place by a thumb screw on the rear which is captive so cannot fall out, another nice touch.
So to the shave. The first thing I noticed was like a Cartridge razor it needs long, smooth strokes, keeping the head against the skin was not as intuative as I would have liked, this I attribute to the slack spring on the head, it is a really light spring and you really have to press to keep contact but when you get the pressure right it does glide nicely. If you don't keep up the pressure it detatches itself from the face, completely the opposite of a DE. I used it this time with Shark blades but I will prefer something sharper so next shave will be with Gillette Yellows and I'll take it from there.
Good points: Compered to a premium DE it is inexpensive. It has shaved me just as well as any DE I own, BBS in fact, it is smooth in use, you hardly know you are shaving. It was a good shave, no mistake. It rinses well too, no clogging, unlike Carts, I remember having to use a Tooth Brush sometimes to clear the head in the bad old days, this just clears with an underwater shake.
Not Good points: I'm not going to say Bad points, that isn't the right term, it isn't bad but,
The head is large, as in really large, it needs, less height if possible. One way to achieve this could be to cut off some of the blades depth once snapped, I know this could be a pain to some but it would take seconds to trim it just beyond the point where it locks in, in honesty I'm not an engineer so someone who is could offer a better solution but for my money the head is just too tall.
The Top leaf adds to the height of the head, this could be done away with of halved in height, that would help.
The Spring that adjusts the head is too light, I'd like it to feel like the One blade, stiffer, still able to pivot but you can feel it better on the face and know where it is. This brings me to another point. Because the head is so tall you do not know exactly where the Top blade edge begins, you cannot see it through the rear so it is guess work if for instance and in my case you have sideburns, you cannot accurately guage where to put the razor to start the cut. The head also performs on the larger parts of the face and neck, it is not good under the Nose in a downward motion because again you cannot see where the blade is so you have to guess if it is right under the nostrils or worse resting on them. I didn't cut my Nose so it cannot be that bad but it performs much better sideways under the nose, it also will not get those pesky hairs right under the Septum.
the shave isn't aggressive at all but still more than efficient enough for the enthusiast.

So that is about it, Will I keep it? Hmmnn, possibly more than probably, it will take a little learning but I believe it is capeable of very good shaves with a little practice, it impressed on it's first outing and I think the shaves will get easier with time.
For £80 if you are looking for something to keep your interest in the hobby I can recommend it, it certainly isn't a novelty razor, it's just different and you have to congratulate Leaf for at least trying to offer a Non disposable razor for the Cartridge fan. I think it would make an excellent razor for the Younger shaver as a present especially if they are environmentally aware.
 

RazorSharp

Veteran
I've not seen this Leaf razor before. It looks interesting and a great idea, possibly good for head shaving. £80 seems a bit steep but understandable for the small company, think it's above my price point though. Will keep an eye out to see if the price drops. Thank you for the review.
 

TheChrisC

Legendary Member
I've not seen this Leaf razor before. It looks interesting and a great idea, possibly good for head shaving. £80 seems a bit steep but understandable for the small company, think it's above my price point though. Will keep an eye out to see if the price drops. Thank you for the review.
Head shaving is my primary use of it, I didn’t find it an amazing face shaver. Great review though @Wayne
 

Missoni

Fellow Traveller
I'm putting this here because I do not consider the Leaf a Cartridge Razor. Yes Technically it isn't but it kind of is, and isn't. Oh I don't know! Is it any good? Yes.
I'll begin with the dimensions. It's long, really long, think of your longest handle, this is longer. Here it is compered to my longest DE the Wolfman WR1.
View attachment 73569
It, as we all know by now, takes 1.5 DE blades snapped in half and inserted into caddys in the head. It is a really cool design, no doubt there, a lot of Engineerring has gone into the concept of this razor, the blades fit easily and securely into the sprung head which pivots similar to a One Blade if you are familiar with that or if not many, many cartridge razors.
View attachment 73570
Here is the head design
View attachment 73571
Once installed the blades are held securely in place by a thumb screw on the rear which is captive so cannot fall out, another nice touch.
So to the shave. The first thing I noticed was like a Cartridge razor it needs long, smooth strokes, keeping the head against the skin was not as intuative as I would have liked, this I attribute to the slack spring on the head, it is a really light spring and you really have to press to keep contact but when you get the pressure right it does glide nicely. If you don't keep up the pressure it detatches itself from the face, completely the opposite of a DE. I used it this time with Shark blades but I will prefer something sharper so next shave will be with Gillette Yellows and I'll take it from there.
Good points: Compered to a premium DE it is inexpensive. It has shaved me just as well as any DE I own, BBS in fact, it is smooth in use, you hardly know you are shaving. It was a good shave, no mistake. It rinses well too, no clogging, unlike Carts, I remember having to use a Tooth Brush sometimes to clear the head in the bad old days, this just clears with an underwater shake.
Not Good points: I'm not going to say Bad points, that isn't the right term, it isn't bad but,
The head is large, as in really large, it needs, less height if possible. One way to achieve this could be to cut off some of the blades depth once snapped, I know this could be a pain to some but it would take seconds to trim it just beyond the point where it locks in, in honesty I'm not an engineer so someone who is could offer a better solution but for my money the head is just too tall.
The Top leaf adds to the height of the head, this could be done away with of halved in height, that would help.
The Spring that adjusts the head is too light, I'd like it to feel like the One blade, stiffer, still able to pivot but you can feel it better on the face and know where it is. This brings me to another point. Because the head is so tall you do not know exactly where the Top blade edge begins, you cannot see it through the rear so it is guess work if for instance and in my case you have sideburns, you cannot accurately guage where to put the razor to start the cut. The head also performs on the larger parts of the face and neck, it is not good under the Nose in a downward motion because again you cannot see where the blade is so you have to guess if it is right under the nostrils or worse resting on them. I didn't cut my Nose so it cannot be that bad but it performs much better sideways under the nose, it also will not get those pesky hairs right under the Septum.
the shave isn't aggressive at all but still more than efficient enough for the enthusiast.

So that is about it, Will I keep it? Hmmnn, possibly more than probably, it will take a little learning but I believe it is capeable of very good shaves with a little practice, it impressed on it's first outing and I think the shaves will get easier with time.
For £80 if you are looking for something to keep your interest in the hobby I can recommend it, it certainly isn't a novelty razor, it's just different and you have to congratulate Leaf for at least trying to offer a Non disposable razor for the Cartridge fan. I think it would make an excellent razor for the Younger shaver as a present especially if they are environmentally aware.
Excellent review...thank you...
 

Wayne

Forum Sod
I've not seen this Leaf razor before. It looks interesting and a great idea, possibly good for head shaving. £80 seems a bit steep but understandable for the small company, think it's above my price point though. Will keep an eye out to see if the price drops. Thank you for the review.
Thank you, on my razor rack it is by far the least expensive, by a very long way. For me it is a cheapy.
 

slapo

Bum-fu apprentice
I've been shaving mostly sideways under the nose, because it's sizeable and I have to nudge it sideways anyway, so I guess it didn't really occur to me it would be an issue for others. I also only ever use it with a single blade, though, because I found it's enough.
I just compared the heads of the Leaf and OneBlade Core and the Leaf is longer by 1-2mm (they're differently shaped and curved, so I don't think it's quite straightforward to compare them).

Incidentally, I sent an email to Leaf Shave on September 22, 2018, telling them I wasn't too keen on the Twig, but that I would very much like to see a single blade Leaf version (perhaps an open comb at that).

Here's what I received in reply, two days later:
Thanks for the suggestion! We are indeed bandying around the idea of a 1-blade Leaf type razor (a 2-blade as well in fact to round out the portfolio). We aren't at the design stages yet, working on current incremental improvements on Leaf right now etc.) but I'll take your suggestion into account and put it on our list. We are working on a metal production-ready Twig design, including increasing it's aggressiveness and a few other ergonomic changes so perhaps you'll take a look at that when it's out.

Anyways, we're always here and ready for feedback or to help if you have issues!
It took them almost two years to finalise the all-metal Twig, so I suppose the single blade Leaf isn't quite around the corner yet.

However, I should also say that when the thumb screw's thumby bit fell off (not really sure why, as I had been trying to be sensible with it), I emailed them and they sent me a new razor, making me a pretty happy shaver. :)
 

Wayne

Forum Sod
I've been shaving mostly sideways under the nose, because it's sizeable and I have to nudge it sideways anyway, so I guess it didn't really occur to me it would be an issue for others. I also only ever use it with a single blade, though, because I found it's enough.
I just compared the heads of the Leaf and OneBlade Core and the Leaf is longer by 1-2mm (they're differently shaped and curved, so I don't think it's quite straightforward to compare them).

Incidentally, I sent an email to Leaf Shave on September 22, 2018, telling them I wasn't too keen on the Twig, but that I would very much like to see a single blade Leaf version (perhaps an open comb at that).

Here's what I received in reply, two days later:


It took them almost two years to finalise the all-metal Twig, so I suppose the single blade Leaf isn't quite around the corner yet.

However, I should also say that when the thumb screw's thumby bit fell off (not really sure why, as I had been trying to be sensible with it), I emailed them and they sent me a new razor, making me a pretty happy shaver. :)
I understand you only using one blade and I’m presuming it is in the lowest position? That would make using it under the nose easier but it then defeats the object of it being a multiple blade razor somewhat. I’m not compering the One Blade to the Leaf at all. Only in reference to the spring stiffness. They are totally different beasts but they both pivot at the head that is the only comparison I was using as a lot of shavers are familiar with the One blade. Nice to know the customer service is top notch though.
 

TheChrisC

Legendary Member
I understand you only using one blade and I’m presuming it is in the lowest position? That would make using it under the nose easier but it then defeats the object of it being a multiple blade razor somewhat. I’m not compering the One Blade to the Leaf at all. Only in reference to the spring stiffness. They are totally different beasts but they both pivot at the head that is the only comparison I was using as a lot of shavers are familiar with the One blade. Nice to know the customer service is top notch though.
They used to offer the plastic Twig razor with it to solve that issue, not that it excuses not being able to do it with the main razor really. Even if they built in a cart-like trimmer into the top of the head, that would help.
 

Wayne

Forum Sod
They used to offer the plastic Twig razor with it to solve that issue, not that it excuses not being able to do it with the main razor really. Even if they built in a cart-like trimmer into the top of the head, that would help.
I think the top plate cover, the one with the name Leaf on it adds the most height to the head and it isn’t really necessary if they used the third leaf as the last part it would slim the head considerably
 

TheChrisC

Legendary Member
I think the top plate cover, the one with the name Leaf on it adds the most height to the head and it isn’t really necessary if they used the third leaf as the last part it would slim the head considerably
Yep agreed. Plus some folks say the top blade does very minimal cutting anyway so a slimmer head should be viable.
 

slapo

Bum-fu apprentice
I understand you only using one blade and I’m presuming it is in the lowest position? That would make using it under the nose easier but it then defeats the object of it being a multiple blade razor somewhat. I’m not compering the One Blade to the Leaf at all. Only in reference to the spring stiffness. They are totally different beasts but they both pivot at the head that is the only comparison I was using as a lot of shavers are familiar with the One blade. Nice to know the customer service is top notch though.
Yep, the lowest position, closest to the safety bar.
For me, it's like an adjustable. If I'm happy at the lowest settings almost all the time, I'm likely to stick to it, maybe use a higher setting once in a blue moon. I think I might've tried it with two half-blades, but didn't find it to be enough of an efficiency boost to keep doing it.
I only mentioned the OneBlade because of the size of its head and because lots of people seem to have tried one of the variants, like you said. if someone's getting along with the OneBlade under the nose, chances are it would be similar for them with a single blade in the Leaf. Except the blades would last longer and cost less. :)

They used to offer the plastic Twig razor with it to solve that issue, not that it excuses not being able to do it with the main razor really. Even if they built in a cart-like trimmer into the top of the head, that would help.
I think that was their intent. I found the plastic Twig to be pretty poor for almost anything, though. Others seem to have liked it somewhat. The new metal twig seems to have a different head geometry, but it would be nice to see more photos of it to be sure.
 
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