The Salient Razor: Design and Use

The Paradigm Salient was designed with two goals: efficiency and smoothness. Easy to say, but difficult to maximize both at the same time.

There is a tendency to reduce shaving characteristics to a set of specifications, typically expressed in gap and exposure. The Salient punches above its weight in those departments. The exposure and gap are moderate at .12mm and .7mm, but the razor shaves more efficiently than those bare specs would suggest. The head is quite thin and maneuverable, which not only makes getting into tight corners easy, but by reducing surface area in contact with the face, facilitates an efficient shave. 

Some people have suggested that the Salient is at its best when used at a relatively shallow angle, i.e., "riding the cap." I have used the razor extensively, and, for me, this is not the case. I find it shaves most comfortably and well when held at about the same angle to the face as most DE razors. I have also found the shave angle to be relatively forgiving: it doesn't need need to be held rigidly at any one particular angle. I let my wrist move naturally as I shave to follow the contours of the face. It's just fine under the nose, for example, at a moderately steep angle. 

The one word of advice I would give is to use light pressure, as light as possible. This is good practice with any single blade razor, but especially true with the Salient and it's very thin blade stack. The reduced surface area improves efficiency, but can become a source of irritation with excessive pressure. The razor is highly efficient in every pass, but really shines ATG. Feel for the direction of grain growth, and shave using short strokes with the lightest pressure possible. You will be rewarded with an uncanny BBS.

Take a bit of time to get to know your Salient. DE razors have changed dramatically over the last several years, and each has its own personality. The Salient is not a generic razor, but is easy enough for even a beginner to use. Get the feel, and your face will be smooth and smiling. It's a great "daily driver."


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