Merkur Progress vs Parker Variant

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by idan, Sep 2, 2017.


Merkur Progress vs Parker Variant

  1. Merkur Progress

  2. Parker Variant

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  1. idan

    idan Member

    Merkur Progress and Parker Variant:
    What are the differences between them in terms of aggressiveness, efficiency and comfort?
    If you had to choose from both of them what was your choice?
    Thank you very much :):)
    RaZorBurn123 likes this.
  2. david of central florida

    david of central florida Rhubarb Rubber

    Both have similar head, but I like the shorter handle of the progress.

    In fairness I've had it longer, so it just feels more natural to me. The variant is a very nice shaver.

    My only fault with the progress is the plastic knob. One day I'll get around to shipping mine to become a mergress.
    RaZorBurn123 likes this.
  3. idan

    idan Member

    More opinions please

    Thank you very much :happy088:
    RaZorBurn123 likes this.
  4. Str8on2

    Str8on2 Well-Known Member

    Let's do similarities:

    1. Both are adjustable.
    2. Both are cast/molded from Zamak (pot metal) though the handle on the Variant is made of brass. Not sure on Progress.
    3. Both give smooth shaves from mild to wild.
    4. Both have alignment notches on the cap and base plate. Which have been an issue with both, Progress longer although the new heads via production seem to be of better quality as of late.
    5. Both have good weight and balance in the hand.

    The difference? Not much really when it comes to shave quality. They are both great razors. The Progress has a smooth angular handle and an odd plastic adjustment knob, some say looks cheap and takes away from it's looks. Whereas the Variant has a knurled handle with a metal adjustment knob that is more robust and easier to use. And imho, the adjustment scale is slightly tighter and a tad more precise on the Variant. But in reality, you don't lose with either one. Cost? Variant is cheaper by a few bucks.
    Edison Carter and DesertTime like this.
  5. Kypros Christodoulides

    Kypros Christodoulides Well-Known Member

    My progress has all the problems a progress can have, so I cannot pronounce on its efficiency. The Variant though is a great razor and among the best and cheapest on the market. I like it so much, I bought a second one in case. It's well balanced for me and always gives me a BBS no fail, without any irritation. The head is a copy of the progress and so is the mechanism which can be taken apart like the prgress. It aligns better than the progress, although as str8on2 said, it's not really an issue as one gets used to it.
  6. RaZorBurn123

    RaZorBurn123 waiting hardily...............

    Only the end user can answer the questions asked. Everyone is different, different level of technique.
    Bama Samurai likes this.
  7. Str8on2

    Str8on2 Well-Known Member

    Ah! Excellent point. Forgot to mention that yes, on the Progress I had a minor alignment problem where I had to keep my finger and thumb on the cap and base plate to make sure the blade stayed at even exposure on both sides as I tightened it down. Minor, but nonetheless it was part of the routine. Thanks for reminding me @Kypros Christodoulides .... :happy088:
  8. steelheart1948

    steelheart1948 New Member

    I used them both. I prefer the Progress. I always had to do more work with the Variant to get as close a shave as I get with my progress.
  9. dragonhf

    dragonhf Member

    What do you guys think, Merkur Progress or Gillette Slim?
  10. Tallships

    Tallships Well-Known Member

    Personally I like the Slim much better, Both are great razors but the Slim has a better grip in my hand, adjustment is metal and not where I mostly hold my razor, ease of blade load
    Both razors give great shave. Variant has a better grip, something I really like, Variant heavier 4 oz. (prefered) compared to Progress 3 oz. Variant 4 inches (Prefered), Progress 3 inches. Blade alignment is best on Variant on assembly. Variant has a metal adjustment compared to plastic on the Progress. Progress $65-$71, Variant $57
    Dont have the Long handled Progress so can't comment. For those who like a lighter razor and are used to a less grip handle then the Progress should be highly recommended, bit personally I prefer the Variant.
    dragonhf and ninjack like this.
  11. Kypros Christodoulides

    Kypros Christodoulides Well-Known Member

    Dear all,
    have in mind that both razors come apart the same way via a split collar. Pull the bottom dial out and it's ready for a clean.
  12. Shave7

    Shave7 Active Member

    I like the yellow bakelite (?) knob on the Progress.

    I rate the Merkur Progress and the Gillette Slim equally.

    They are outstanding razors, but then as a disclaimer I've never met an adjustable razor I didn't love.
  13. jwr3265

    jwr3265 Active Member

    I've had a Mergress and have a Variant. I prefer the Variant.

    Build seems more solid, heftier, and the handle has great knurling.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  14. David W650

    David W650 Active Member

    Glad this thread came up as I'm thinking of getting a Parker Variant. I've got a Merkur Progress and it is one of the best razors I've ever used. Easy to hold, well balanced and I don't have any issues loading or adjusting the settings. By the way, I like the plastic/resin knob as it is easy to use and give the Progress a nice retro look. I did have a Mergress and didn't like it because it was heavy and unbalanced in my hand. Been reading about the Variant and did check it out at a store recently. I may pick one up this weekend.

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