Parker is the sort of company that has tremendous staying power.
It’s been manufacturing some top-notch razors and grooming products for wet shavers since 1973. Now, 40 years later the Indian company is still one of the best razor manufacturers out there.
What sets the company apart is the unique sense of design culture.
The razors are simple, but the materials are sourced from far-flung destinations. The sandalwood used in one of their best shaving soaps, for example, was specially flown in from Ethiopia.
The firm is also very picky with the retail shops it works with. Each retailer in North America and Europe is hand-picked by the management and integrated into a close-knit network of grooming experts across the world.
That’s what brings us to the most popular product from their range – the Parker 92R Ultra Heavyweight Butterfly Open.
How’s the razor?
It’s an absolute favorite with long-time wet shaving men who prefer a heavy razor. At 3.1 ounces or 88 grams, this razor is somewhat heavier than other razors on the market, but when you hold it the difference is barely noticeable.
You’ll be more likely to notice the difference while actually using the razor. The evenly distributed weight makes it easier to handle and maneuver around the skin.
But the ultra heavyweight is unique in one other way – the structure of the head.
The top is in what’s called the ‘butterfly’ design. That’s because the top has symmetrical panels that resemble a butterfly’s wings. The same design is also called twist-to-open razor head for obvious reasons.
One of the great features of this sort of design is that it allows the blade to make direct contact with the skin while moving the shaving foam out of the way effectively. The razor doesn’t gunk up from lather, pre shave oil and shaved hair.
Now that I mentioned it, make sure you check out my previous article on the best pre shave oil for smooth shaves.
It’s pretty old-school though and it takes some getting used to.
Casual wet shavers, younger shavers and beginners will not be comfortable with this level of aggressiveness.
It’s not that it’s overly aggressive razor. It’s more like the learning curve that it’s required to get a comfortable shave. If I compare it with some other beginner friendly safety razors like the Merkur 34c and the Edwin Jagger DE89, you might need more time to getting used to it.
But for the diehard wet shaver who appreciates the old school design and has a thick beard to raze off, this is the perfect tool.
The handle is well-balanced. It has grooves and handle design could well be the best thing about the razor.
It has black, glossy diagonal grooves that go pretty deep. They rotate clockwise and counterclockwise from the top. These deep grooves provide a good grip while shaving without being uncomfortable.
You can probably hold the handle tightly for hours without feeling the grooves dig into the skin on your palms. The texture on the grooves also make it less like to slip in your hands.
Speaking of the handle, it’s one of the longest I’ve ever shaved with. Measuring around 4.25 inches or 108mm from end to end.
In my opinion the taller handle and well distributed weight work well.
The balanced razor is easy to handle and move around the face, while people with large hands will find the longer shaft more comfortable to hold. Also, the brass plating on the handle is delightfully good. It’s smooth texture and quality really work well.
The biggest drawbacks for me is the weight, the somewhat aggressive blade design and the fact that there’s room for mistake when you twist the handle to secure the blade within the razor head.
Although I find that the weight concerns from other users are exaggerated there’s some truth here. The razor is not as ‘ultra heavyweight’ as advertised. It feels sturdy and strong, but not thick and it might take a few shaves until you get used to it, especially if you’ve been shaving with light, plastic cartridge razors.
Considering the diameter of the handle is just 12 mm / 0.47″, it’s a well designed handle that won’t leave you complaining.
The aggressive design is understandable. Butterfly heads are not common and most people would be a little intimidated by the structure.
As indicated, the design makes it really easy to open the top and fit the blade in. Usually fitting the blade in the Parker 92R is as easy as a twist top. But the exposure of the blade could get uncomfortable. That is, unless you use the place the blade right in the razor head and secure it, you might have one side more exposed than the other.
Speaking of razor blades, this Parker safety razor 92r normally comes with Shark blades. If you ask me, they’re not really my favorite and I’m never able to get a comfortable shave with them.
The combination simply makes the shave less comfortable. Instead find another blade that suits you better. Finding the perfect blade is a matter of trial and error, but you’ll eventually figure it out.
That trial and error was exactly what I had to do the first time I got this razor.
Even though I used it with my very best shaving cream (I’m looking at you TRUEFITT & HILL ) combined with Shark razor blades, the shaving didn’t feel right. I had to stop after a few strokes and replace the blade with an Astra blade I had lying around the bathroom. This worked much better.
Tip: Razor blades are as important as the razor selection.
I’m pretty experienced in wet shaving with safety razors and I’m also very familiar with even more aggressive than the reviewed one (I’m looking at you Muhle R41). My skin is a bit rough and the hair is fairly thick. So , even if you’ve got thick and dense beard, this type of razors will work well for you.
To be honest, I wouldn’t recommend this safety razor to beginners or people with sensitive skin. The shaving experience is simply too rough for this.
Finally, the Parker 92R Ultra Heavyweight razor is priced at around the midpoint of safety razors on the market.
It’s normally cheaper than an Edwin Jagger and much cheaper than a Muhle.
In my opinion, it’s well priced. The heavy handle with great grip and easy access top all work well and the price is justified. It’s great value for money.
Overall, the Indian company behind this razor has decades of experience creating some fantastic shaving tools.
Closing thoughts on Parker 92r Safety Razor
The brand is well known and well respected in wet shaving circles.
The design is easy to hold, maneuver, and replace blades with. But the rough design tends to be overly aggressive. This may not suit people with sensitive skin.
Beginners, meanwhile will be better off with a Merkur or Edwin Jagger razor instead.
But the price is towards the lower end and that’s what might convince a lot of beards men to buy the razor. It’s an affordable tool built with great materials and a well thought-out design.
I wouldn’t say that this is among the top safety razors for beginners but it’s surely a very solid choice. If you ask me, I would rate the Parker 92R heavyweight a 8/10, all things considered.