Thursday, 3 September 2015
An Elegant Shave from Wilde & Harte
Taking Eagerly to the Osterley
Remember my eye being taken with The Osterley from Wilde & Harte? Its shiny allure was impossible to resist. I now find myself gently caressing its beautiful, elegant contours each morning — whether or not I intend to shave.
When you first see the Osterley safety razor nestled in its presentation box you are desperate to pluck the thing out — it is profoundly tactile thanks to the faultless hand-polishing. But don't let the classic beauty distract you from its purpose. This traditional three-piece safety razor is a carefully engineered tool — proudly made in the UK — and when you unscrew the pieces to drop in a blade you hear the smooth and reassuring sound of well-engineered metal.
Shaves Like a Dream
There is no denying it looks great and makes the right noises, but behind those matinée idol good looks does the Osterley pass muster on the shaving front? I put on some shaving music and positioned my badger hair brush, shaving cream and hot towels. I was ready to begin my trial.
The moment you hold the Osterley in your shaving hand it feels right. It has a wonderfully balanced size and weight. The shape of the handle invites the fingers to form a natural grip like a good club for a golfer. It handled the straights and curves around my strangely angular Anglo Saxon face superbly. The weight of the razor helps to do the work, and the size and shape of the razor helps you to position your hand at the right angle for an effortless scrape.
The Osterley almost urges you to up your game. You don't want to let it down with poor technique. I hope I didn't, old chum, I hope I didn't. If you are looking for a classic wet shave, you should consider putting an Osterley safety razor on your team. Wilde & Harte are seeing increasing demand for this grown-up style of razor, with customers citing economic and environmental advantages. I don't know about that. I just know it looks damn good and shaves bloody well.