Yesterday was my first shave with the IKON S3S. It’s a magnificent razor to handle; it’s heavy head plowed through my beard like butter, leaving my arm sore from wielding the weight of its solid stainless body.

My first mistake: Don’t underestimate this razor based on positive reviews as a “smooth” shaver. A hint of its aggressiveness comes from looking at its blade exposure….huge. I made the near-fatal error of loading a Feather blade into it for my first shave. Sheer craziness. The Feather is brutally sharp and unforgiving, even in your favorite razor; not a great choice for a first shave with a new razor. It left my face raw, a fact attested to by the massive stinging from the mandatory alum block. Still…no blood..a pretty good sign.

Although I’ve heard some reviewers say that they found the open comb side shaved pretty much the same as the closed side, it was not my experience. The open comb side is far more aggressive IMHO, although YMMV.

Today, I replaced the Feather with a Treet “Black Beauty”, a wonderful carbon steel blade that has long been a favorite. The shave was a little easier, but alas, the damage had already been done yesterday and it was tough shaving an already irritated facial terrain.

But here’s a key note: Both shaves resulted in an absolutely stubble-free face, even in traditionally tough areas that resist multiple passes. The IKON did it on the first pass. This may even be a razor that you can use with only two passes, eliminating the traditional against-the-grain third pass.

Crazy enough….I love this razor and can see it becoming my daily shaver.