Razor blades are expensive – and let’s be honest, they aren’t a lot of fun to buy. Add on the “pink tax” to women’s razors and a pack can easily be over $20! Eight years ago, in 2011, Dollar Shave Club (DSC) emerged on the market as a solution to these over-inflated costs. In 2017, Billie joined that market, aimed specifically at women. I tried out both companies in an attempt to determine which had the better product AND overall service. Below are the results, comparing everything from shipping and overall cost, to the quality of the handles and blades.
The Dollar Shave Club starter kit comes with the Executive handle, a 4 pack of razor cartridges, and a travel size shave butter. After the starter kit, deliveries include 8 razor cartridges and a full-size shave butter. This delivery comes every two months, with the option to change the frequency to every 3 or 4 months. If you don’t want the shave butter, you can choose to get just the razor and cartridges from the get-go, though the option is in tiny print at the very bottom of the page. The Billie starter kit comes with a Billie handle (in your choice of a few different colors), a magnetic holder for the razor, and two 5-blade razor cartridges. After the initial shipment, monthly deliveries include four cartridges.
My only complaint with the Billie starter kit is that it doesn’t include 4 razor cartridges to get you started. For those who shave daily, two cartridges are not enough to get you through to the next shipment. No one wants to experience razor burn in the meantime. Razor burn does not equate to a repeat customer. That said, I found Dollar Shave Club’s attempt to upcharge me for a shave butter I didn’t want offputting. The option to start basic with just a handle and blades is hidden at the bottom of the page. There is also the option to go into your account after the initial shipment and remove the shave butter option, but that does require extra steps (and memory) on the customer’s part.
With both DSC and Billie, you can opt to include other products in your monthly delivery. DSC options range in price from $4 to $12 and include items such as cologne, oral care, body care, and shaving needs. There are extensive items available in each of the listed categories. This provides the customer with a number of options, though for me it was a bit overwhelming. Billie options also range in price from $4 to $12 and include items such as shave cream, body lotion, travel bags, and shower caps. They only offer seven additional products at this time.
Winner: Dollar Shave Club
Dollar Shave Club is fast! I had new razors in my mailbox within just a few days of processing my monthly order. DSC’s consistency meant that I could rely on my next shipment and plan my razor usage accordingly so I never had to skip a day of shaving (because dull blades are not fun). Billie, on the other hand, is not so fast. The razors must take a few side trips on the way to my mailbox because each shipment arrives up to a week and a half after processing. Shipments have taken so long that I have actually signed into my account a few times to make sure that they did actually ship.
Winner: Dollar Shave Club
Dollar Shave Club subscriptions start at $4 a month (shipping included) for a reusable handle and five 2-blade
The Blade Handle
Dollar Shave Club is a male-focused company, whereas Billie is for women, so the preference here may come down to gender. I found the DSC blade handle difficult to hold for the angle I was using to shave. For a man shaving his face, this may not be an issue. I personally could not get a good grip, which made shaving a bit precarious. However, the Billie handle is ergonomic and built with a good grip that allows easier shaving at the angles I need (no slipping!). DSC does provide a few different blade handle options if the first one you try doesn’t work for you. Billie only offers one handle option, though one is all I need since it works for me. Billie also offers a few different color options if that matters to you.
Winner: Billie for women, Dollar Shave Club for men
The Razor Blades
Once again, Dollar Shave Club provides multiple options for their razor blades. You can get razors with 2 stainless steel blades up to 6 stainless steel blades. The blades include lubricating strips, with ingredients such as chamomile, olive oil, and aloe (ingredients vary by blade type). I started with the 4-blade. Because I had four cartridges in my initial shipment, I used them for a week each. After just two weeks, I had a horrible razor burn. The blades were sharp and gave me a close shave the first few days, but dulled quickly. I had to stop using the blades and after discontinuing use the problem went away.
The Billie razor has 5 stainless steel and nickel-free blades that are encased in aloe shave soap. Not only does this make shaving easier without the need for additional product, but it also reduces the chance of razor burn. With the Billie razor, I get a close, non-irritating shave every time. I have been using Billie now for 3 months and have not had any issues with skin sensitivities of any kind.
“Our blades are also optimally spaced to allow shave cream, soap and hair to pass on by, because there’s nothing pretty about a clogged razor.”– Billie
The Dollar Shave Club website has a lot of options in the way of navigation, which can make finding what you need more time-consuming. I feel like a lot of options are somewhat hidden from the customer, in the hopes that you will sign up for the fancier (ie more expensive) plan. You have to do a bit of searching if you are wanting just a basic handle and razor for the cheapest price they offer! On
Both DSC and Billie have excellent customer service. With DSC, I needed help before placing my first order. I received a response quickly and it provided just the information I needed. About two weeks after signing up with Billie, I still had not received my starter kit. I reached out to their customer service and like DSC, received a prompt reply. They shipped out another kit to me that exact same day, free of charge.
And the Winner is…Billie!
While Dollar Shave Club has many positive aspects (and tons of product offerings), Billie pulls ahead for quality and comfort. For a woman, the handle is just so much easier to hold than the DSC handle. Plus, I don’t want to use a razor that gives me razor burn! Because of the aloe gel on the Billie blades, razor burn is never a problem. Billie products are free of toxins and harmful additives (no parabens, sulfate free, vegan, and designed for sensitive skin). AND the company donates 1% of all revenue to women’s causes around the world! I love that for just $9 every month I can have new blades delivered to my door. It’s convenient and it saves me money on standard store-bought blades –
Have you tried Dollar Shave Club or Billie? What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments!
Want to give Billie a try? Sign up here!