Parker 99R Review (Long Handle Butterfly Opening Double Edge Safety Razor)
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Today’s article is a Parker 99R review and buying guide – a long-handle heavyweight butterfly safety razor.
If you are a tall and buff dude, you probably have large hands.
With large hands, small safety razors will be stressful to use just like small-screened smartphones are.
The good news, however, is that there are safety razor models like the Parker 99R and Merkur 23c that have been designed for your comfort and use – unlike the Muhle R41 standard and the Merkur 34 Heavy Duty, that come with large and long enough handles for your comfort while shaving.
Parker 99R (Summary)
Related reading: Best Head Shaver for Men
The Parker 99R safety razor is one of the long, weighty, and large handles designed for your hands.
Parker has taken after the old Gillette Fatboy about their handle length and weight.
The Parker 99R safety razor can hold its own in terms of length even when put side by side with the Merkur Futur adjustable razor (a DE considered to be the largest there is).
By the way, did you know that Parker is also making some of the best fair-priced shave brushes that are available today? They also make shaving soaps, shave creams, great shaving kits for men, shavette style best straight razor for barbers as well as some of the best straight edge razor kits.
I bet you didn’t.
That said, you will most definitely appreciate the weight and heft that the Parker 99R has to offer.
This was however not the case when this one-of-a-kind d-e razor was introduced in the market.
Its design has come a long way ever since its first manufacture back in the year 1973.
Many of the design changes and improvements can be noticed on the head, right where the blade sits.
Back in 2010, the TTO head was redesigned.
The improvement that was made included having a thicker metal which in turn made it heavier.
The blade angle was also changed to make it milder and a great option for individuals who have just started on classic shaving.
With this upgrade to the Parker 99R safety razor, we now understand why the weight scale read 3.3 ounces.
The weight is great since it provides great support and balance, helping you to get a closer and better shave.
What the Parker Heavyweight Razor Has to Offer
- About 4.5 inches (114 mm) long giving the Merkur Futur a run for its money
- Styled knurling, similar to the barber pole design
- Brass frame
- It is a one-piece safety razor and features a head that is a “twist to open” design
- Great price
Overall Length: 4.5 inches/ 114 mm
Handle Length: 4 inches/ 102 mm
Handle Diameter: 0.5 inches/ 13 mm
Weight: 3.4 ounces/ 97 grams
Finish: Nickel Plated Chrome
Type: Twist To Open (TTO)
Knurled handle: Yes
Blade included: 5
Please note that the star ratings below are our ratings – it has nothing to do with how the product is rated on sites like Amazon.
What to Expect from This Popular Butterfly Open Safety Razor
With the upgrade to a TTO design, you might be tempted to think that the Parker 99R is the only one of its kind on the market.
Wrong, there are several other safety razors as well featuring this design.
The implementation of the design is what matters; some are weak and those are rather strong.
With Twist to Open designs, the weakest link is always their butterfly doors which have to be opened and closed every time you are loading your blade, or even cleaning it.
This will over time, weaken the hinges of the butterfly doors and render them non-functional.
In addition to this, cheap TTO safety razors like the Weishi, feature thin metal hinges that might corrode and with constant use, might break with time.
When purchasing this one, you might want to get the right blade for your skin as well.
Note that we all have different skin types and what may work for me, might not work for you.
Is Blade Loading Easy on the Parker 99r?
On the market today, there are two kinds of safety razors; three-piece and two-piece heads.
Two-piece safety razor heads are generally considered to be easier to load blades on.
You should also note that the Parker 99R, being an untraditional one-piece solution, comes with a design that makes loading the blade a walk in the park.
All you are required to do is twist the knob located at the bottom of the handle and the butterfly doors fly open providing room to slide in the blade.
Things cannot get easier than that.
If you are the kind of person who shaves every day and finds it very annoying having to take apart a three-piece just to load a blade, shave and get ready for work, then the Parker is most definitely the safety razor for you.
Regarding aggressiveness, the responses and reviews are quite contrasting.
Some strongly believe that it is an aggressive safety razor given the amount of blade that the design exposes and as such, it should not be bought by novices in shaving with a safety razor.
Related reading: Feather AS-D2 Review
Then some believe that the blade is not overly aggressive and neither is it as mild as some products on the market.
Well, in all fairness and to put the matter to rest once and for all, in our review we give the blade a rating of 5/6 for its aggressiveness.
Related reading: Merkur 37c Review
That said, this is probably a model that a newbie might want to avoid and that more experienced shavers should get given its decent results and affordable price.
The knurling on this shaver handle is similar to that on a Merkur 38C.
The two razors both use the barber pole design handle which according to some experts in the industry provides for better grip, especially if you are a right-handed individual.
Related reading: Muhle R89 Review
Left-handed persons might have a lesser grip on the handle courtesy of the spiral direction.
Both also have a knob at the bottom of the handle, which is a feature I like.
This is one of the longest safety razors there is on the market measuring about 4.5 inches long.
Parker designs are well known for their handles which are perfect for guys with big hands, as they also have done with their Parker Variant adjustable safety razor model.
Comparing it to the Merkur Vision (no longer in production), the longest there is on the market, this model is not so far behind.
What Consumers and Other Reviews Are Saying about the Parker Safety Razor
The Parker safety razor is indeed made and designed in India.
But despite this fact, the product has gotten plenty of reviews over the years, most of which are positive.
In the reviews, the users loved the quality of the build, the nice chrome finish, the close shave it provides, and the weight which gives the product a good balance.
There are of course plenty of opinions on it over on Reddit.
The safety razor goes for about $30, give or take a few dollars depending on where you make your purchase and when you do.
With this price range, the product is not the cheapest there is on the market, but at the very least, it is priced reasonably when you consider the finish, weight, fit and overall quality.
Some consumers and reviewers went ahead to compare this safety razor to the likes of Weishi – a product that has been built and designed in China.
From the comparison, the reviewers concluded that the Parker 99R is a better build, especially about its butterfly doors and weight distribution.
Most often than not, the product is branded as a mild safety classic razor for men which surprises many individuals who use it.
The Parker 99R is slightly more aggressive than you would expect it to be.
In addition to this, many fell in love with the long handle that provides better shave control when compared to other safety razors like the Gillette Super Speed.
The two feature similar head design only that the Parker 99R has a much smaller/lower profile which makes it easier for you to navigate around the nose/lip area.
The one complaint that some consumers and some reviews had was the fact that the safety razor lacked a locking mechanism for the butterfly doors.
Without this locking mechanism, the doors can very well fly open whilst shaving. The Gillette Super Speed had this feature.
The modern shavers are lacking in this feature.
The biggest complaints of all are the fact that the butterfly doors tend to break apart.
The hinges on the butterfly door are possibly the weakest link on the shaver and they tend to fail after a few years of service.
Parker makes many popular models, each catering to different preferences. We have mentioned the Variant already, but some others that are worth checking out are the 22R which also has the Butterfly opening and a long handle, 90R also has a long handle (but a different design), and Butterfly opening, the popular 98R heavyweight or the beauty 96R.
Parker 99R vs. Merkur & Edwin Jagger
- Parker 99R is a bit more expensive than the chrome-plated Edwin Jagger DE89
- The Parker is cheaper than the Merkur 34c
- Parker has a longer handle than both Merkur and Edwin Jagger
- Parker is the most aggressive of these three (medium to slightly aggressive), Merkur and Edwin Jagger are about the same level there (mild), Merkur a tad more aggressive than EJ
- The Butterfly opening on the Parker 99R makes loading of the blade easier than on the other two
- The downside of the moving parts on the Parker reduces the lifespan
- If you prefer to shave with a safety razor with some weight to it, Parker is by far the best option
- The handle & grip on the Parker is very good, much better than Edwin Jagger. The grip on Merkur 34c is great, but the downside is the very short handle
- Parker 99R is a Twist To Open (TTO), while Merkur 34c is a two-piece and Edwin Jagger is a three-piece. Most wet-shavers find cleaning the latter easier
On Amazon, you can also get a nice-looking travel case for the Parker 99R safety razor.
I hope that our review has helped you in your decision – the Parker 99R long handle is a great safety razor that I think you will be happy to shave with for many years!
Our Parker 99R review against Merkur 34C and Edwin Jagger DE89. It has some great pros and some minor cons that you should be aware of before you buy.
Product Brand: Parker Shaving
Product In-Stock: InStock
- Parker 99R is classified as a somewhat mild alternative, but still will provide you with a nice, close shave which is perfect for intermediate shavers
- The product has a great balance and weight
- Nice Chrome finish
- The finish and fit have improved over the years from its predecessors
- The TTO design makes it a breeze to load a blade
- Some experienced wet shavers have gone on record to say that the Parker 99R safety razor can prove difficult to find the perfect angle
- Based on some customer reviews, the Parker 99R still has some quality control issue
- Given the difficulty of finding the perfect shaving angle, some pros in the industry might have a hard time shifting from a different safety razors models to this one
Happy (wet) Shaving!
My name is Don and welcome to Luxury Shaving Razors! The idea behind the site was born in 2016 after trying to find a decent safety razor for my own personal use. I decided to document my journey.