Shaving your head with a razor is an essential skill that takes time to master. Improving this skill becomes more effective when using a super sharp blade with a textured handle to get a smooth shave results.
The best razors for shaving your head include non-electric manual razors, such as cartridge and safety razors, as well as unique palm shavers that require no electricity to use.
From top-of-the-line blades to special features, the B&B team tested multiple razors to see which one achieved the closest head shave. Here are the top picks with pros and cons.
While there is some debate over electric shavers vs non-electric razors, the B&B team has shaved with both types and found that non-electric razors truly achieve the closest shave. They are also the best for quick wet shaving.
Best Head Razor Buyer’s Guide
Manual head razors or non-electric razors are the simplest tool for shaving your head. You only need to add a double-edge blade to get started. Mostly it’s the quality of the blades, durability, and construction that matter most.
Things to Know
- Multiple designs: Two-piece, three-piece, adjustable, or butterfly
- Double-Edge Blades: All types typically use this blade unless brand-specific
- Open vs Scalloped vs Slanted Head: These are different designs for the head of the razor. Open is considered being the most “intense” or aggressive shave.
- Handle and Grip: Safety razors come with longer, weighted handles and non-slip grips for a balanced shave.
You only need to buy the razor and learn how to install blades within the trap doors to get a flawless head shave.
Unlike cartridge or disposable razors, these extra-sharp blades provide the most precise shave, but they can also be prone to nicks and cuts if the blades are misaligned.
Less expensive initially than a safety razor, you’ll get a high-quality shave with a cartridge razor. These typically come with easy-to-install, plugin cartridges that contain multiple blades and a lubricating strip, which is why they’re extremely popular.
Things to Know
- Multiple Blades:Cartridge razors have installable, plug-in blades that feature a 3- to 5-blade design.
- Plastic or Premium Handle:Cheaper drugstore brands have a textured handle that’s slightly weighted, but not as sturdy as a safety razor.
- Lubricated Strip:This protects your head from a too-close, razor burn-inducing shave.
- Best for Sensitive Scalps:If you constantly get ingrown hairs on your scalp or razor burn after shaving, then try a cartridge razor for sensitive skin.
When it comes to cartridge vs safety razors, it depends on the brand and design, as some are made for shaving body hair, not your head. Cartridge razors typically need a few more strokes to get a perfectly smooth scalp.
However, for those with a sensitive scalp, products like the Gillette Mach 3 are perfect because they prevent razor burn on your scalp.
Cheap and quick, disposable razors work for a head shave if you have nothing else or don’t mind throwing away the razor after each use.
- Simple Design: Disposable razors are typically made from plastic and have a single or double blade design.
- Lightweight: You can get a quick head shave with a disposable razor when you’re in a pinch, but it won’t be the most satisfying experience.
- Most Affordable: These razors weren’t built for multiple uses, but they are priced to be used and thrown away. Disposable razors are typically only good for one or two uses before going dull.
While you’ve probably had a moment on vacation and bought a disposable razor in desperation, these generally aren’t the best to get a clean, close shave without razor burn and stubble. These razors are typically flimsier and made from plastic, but it’s really the dull quality of the blade that leads to issues.
Don’t Forget Your Head Shave Routine
You’ll want to apply shaving cream and an after shave head balm depending on whether you want a matte or shiny head. Check out our head shaving guide to see all of our suggestions for the ultimate clean head shave.
Top 5 Manual Head Razors
A few considerations: Our comparisons were done against what I consider an average or middle of the road electric shaver. So, safety razors and cartridge razors easily do a better job. For a long time, technology continues to advance and the Best Electric Head Shavers now come very close to a clean blade shave with quality shave cream.
We reviewed the following razors based on a close shave result, as well as skin irritation, ease-of-use, maintenance, blade quality, and design.
1. Vikings Blade Chieftain Safety Razor
The Vikings shave brand is well known for its high-quality razors. Super efficient, sharp, and adjustable, the Vikings Chieftain “Odin” razor is a premium shave product that instantly shaves away hair from your scalp—and you won’t have to go over the same spot twice.
This head razor has a dual head system with multiple micro-blade settings so you can change the intensity and closeness of the shave. The black and gold design also just makes it fun to use. You’ll feel like Viking royalty shaving with this razor.
Vikings also built in a mechanism that prevents the blades from nicking you if they are misaligned. Thus, it’s a highly efficient safety razor that you feel truly comfortable shaving your head with. It’s also made with brass and feels a tad weighted, so the razor is easy to balance in your hand.
- Super close shave
- Weighted handle
- Sharp blades
- Multiple micro-settings to control your shave
- Takes time to learn blade settings
- Need to purchase blades separately
Overall, we loved the feel and control of the Vikings Chieftain razor. It’s disappointing that the initial purchase didn’t include the double-edge blades required to start shaving, so take note that you’ll need to purchase these before embarking on your head shave. Overall, you’ll love the way that this razor glides over your scalp and prevents minor cuts with its unique TRAPS guard.
- The Chieftain is a time-tested and proven perfect all-rounder razor with medium aggression
- Special ANTI-Misalignment mechanism which FREEZES the doors if users mis-align the blade to prevent uneven cuts
- NOTE: Rose gold plating is meant to age, fade and form a unique weathered appearance - Towel-dry razor after use to maintain it
- Luxury carry case with mirror + A pack of Swedish 13C26 steel mild blades
- Great and meaningful for all occasions: Christmas, Father's Day etc
2. Merkur Long-Handled Safety Razor
With its high-end German craftsmanship and weighted design, the Merkur is a first-class razor that’s made for men’s hands. It’s comfortable to shave with and features a lightweight, longer handle.
This safety razor also has a straight-cut, closed comb head that works with any standard double-edge blade. Thanks to its non-slip grip, you can quickly go over your head, stroke after stroke, to get an unbelievably close shave.
The three-piece set also comes with an extra-long and short handle razor, all featuring a chrome finish.
- Easy to use
- Comes with double-edged blades
- Three-piece set with different handle sizes
- Customers reported issues with durability
Overall, the first and second head shave with the Merkur was exceptional and easy. You can start shaving almost immediately after installing the double-edge blade. We liked that the set comes with different handle sizes, all of which are weighted and balance. It just feels great to shave with the Merkur.
- EXCELLENT COMFORT AND CONTROL - Have a comfortable and safe grip with its long-handle, designed for man-sized hands.
- DOUBLE EDGE SAFETY RAZOR - This feature of the razor is very convenient and gives a quick, decent shave.
- HEAVYWEIGHT - Its weight of 4.2 ounces gives a solid feel in the hand and allows the razor to do most of the work.
- CHROME FINISH - It has a chrome finish, making the razor look sleek and simple.
- HIGH-QUALITY RAZOR - Merkur Futur provides men with quality grooming with this top-quality razor that gives a nice, clean shave.
3. HeadBlade ATX All Terrain Head Shaver
We know the HeadBlade ATX doesn’t exactly look like it’s user friendly. The design is horizontal and rectangle, which throws you off at first – slightly resembling a race car.
However, you’ll get over that feeling fast after experiencing just one shave with this fascinating device. This razor mimics the way an all-terrain vehicle moves, hence the name.
With its curved body and pivotal heads on the front and back, it can easily get a close shave for those who want to clean shave your head bald. It’s not the best for facial hair though.
Multiple blades on this head razor form to your skull as you glide over it, and the grip makes it easy to hold in your palm. You can go from your forehead to the back of your head and neck easily with this shaver. It comes with four blades, and it has an innovative, flexible design. You’ll love the wheels on this device, which makes it pretty fun to use.
Everything comes with this razor, too. Inside of your kit, you’ll get replacement blades, 5-oz container of brand shaving lotion, and much more.
- Fun design
- Four blades
- Affordable and least expensive of all reviewed
- Blades a replaceable
- Not always as close of a shave
- Takes time getting used to blade feel
- Takes time getting used to the rolling wheels
For those who want a little fun in their routine, this is the head shaver for you. It’s a great design that works well, and it keeps your head cut pretty close to the scalp. However, you may feel weird rolling this shaver over your face since its main purpose is for guys who want to get a close bald shave.
- RIGID FUNCTIONALITY - Designed with a rigid body to give a straight, effective shave
- REVOLUTIONARY DESIGN - Utilizes new multi-blade technology with flow through design
- EASILY ACCESSIBLE - Eliminates the learning curve for anyone who previously used a conventional razor
- FINGER RING - Provides an easy and sturdy hold to make shaving a breeze
- BLADE COMPATIBILITY - Includes one HB4 Blade, compatible with HB4 and HB6 refill packs
4. Gillette Mach 3 for Sensitive Skin
Gillette produces good ol’ standby razors that are inexpensive and provide a decent head shave. While it’s not as close the first time as the Merkur or Vikings safety razors, Gillette Mach 3 is a multiple blade cartridge razor that was made for sensitive skin.
If you constantly have issues with ingrown hairs or razor burn, then the Gillette Mach 3 may be the best razor of all. It’s also less than $15 and comes with disposable razors. The Mach 3 family also includes disposable razors like the Mach 3 Turbo and Gillette Fusion, which has five blades.
Out of all the Gillette Mach 3 models, the Mach 3 Sensitive is the best version because of its ability to quickly shave away hair with a comfort strip that soothes the scalp. We also appreciate the quality of the handle and blades, despite the low price.
- 3-blade design
- Comfort strip for sensitive skin
- Diamond-like coating (DLC) for sharp blades
- Outperforms the Gillette Fusion 5
- Need to replace blades every few shaves due to dullness
- Replacement blades can get pricey
When it comes to razors, you can’t go wrong with the Gillette Mach 3. With its pre-lubricated strip, the Mach 3 is quite affordable and delivers a pretty close shave, though you won’t get any versatility like the Vikings blade. For the price and inclusion of the disposable blades, it’s worth the small cost.
- Closer shave, less irritation, even for sensitive skin (vs. Sensor2 disposable)
- Clinically proven suitable for sensitive skin
- Better, even on the 10th shave (overall preference vs. Sensor2 disposable)
- Dura Comfort blades for long-lasting comfort
- Extra-lubricating gel strip glides to help fight irritation (vs MACH3)
5. Parker 96R Platinum Safety Razor
Finally, we looked at another classic safety razor that still beats all the newer models on the market. The Parker 96R razor is a butterfly double edge safety razor that delivers a super-close shave every time.
With its simple black, textured handle, Parker’s razor was possibly the first to feature a longer handle that provided an extra inch for those hard-to-reach areas in the back.
We also love that the double-edge blades are included with this package, making it a super affordable razor with a stylish vintage look that you’ll love to have around in the bathroom.
- Weighted black handle with texture grip
- Durable design
- Includes double edge razor blades
- Barber’s favorite
- Be careful with butterfly doors with first use due to the learning curve
- Head shaves require multiple passes
It’s easy to get a close head shave with the Parker 96R blade, and it’s not hard to see why barbers always use this razor. With its weighted design and long handle, you can easily cover your entire head in minutes for a silky, smooth scalp.
- A Genuine Parker Safety Razor product -- For over 40 years, Parker's safety razors have been imitated but never duplicated!
- Twist-to-Open butterfly doors for easy blade replacement
- Textured handle for a sure grip
- Genuine Brass Frame - Solid Construction
- 5 Parker Premium Platinum Double Edge Safety Razor Blades Included