This is my first straight razor. I have been wanting to try out this method of shaving for a while but have only just mustered up the courage, and I'm glad I did. I have been looking at Thiers Issard razors on the interweb for many years, they just look so beautiful. This razor is magic. The 5/8 blade width makes it easier to control which is perfect for a beginner like me. Also it isn't too much on an investment, so learning how to use a strop, and later on when it needs it honing, aren't as daunting as it might be with a super dooper fancy razor. Not to say that this razor isn't special, because buying on is quite a treat.