Monday, February 06, 2006

Lighter Notes--Shaving Truth

The landlord (Da Laird) and I had to sneer at the Gillette "Fusion" ad during the game. FIVE damn blades. And the back has a trimming blade! So there's a facial shaving blade and then a trimmer on the top--just like great-granddad's razor! A good idea if you're going to sport whiskers--but "revolutionary"??

Da Laird can't grasp why it's got a battery-powered version. As Sir Robin asked of the maneating rabbit--what's it do, nibble your bum?

I remember about 20 years ago Saturday Night Live had a fake ad for a supersmooth razor with nine blades. A cartoon showed how the successive blades cut your head off.

I give us another 12 months before the Perfect Shave requires a half-dozen blades. Or perhaps a microrobot with razors on a caterpillar tread. Or something equally dumb.

Should you stay at a five-star resort and hit their barber for a $50 shave, he'll give you the best shave of your life--with a single-edged razor, plenty of prep with hot water, and foam from a metal tube. Same basic tech as 1850, for 1000 times the price.

But it will take more than 2 minutes, which is apparently what the current manly man wants to spend scraping his face.

About four years ago I stumbled across a vintage-style double-edged safety razor at a Minnesota drugstore. Two halves of the chrome steel head lever open as the central screw is spun, allowing a razor-sharp double-edged blade to be inserted. Then the screw locks the top together over the blade.

This was the most convoluted, overdesigned piece of machinery for a daily chore I'd ever seen, and I already owned three different models of safety razor. So of course I bought it.

To my surprise, this Rube Goldberg contraption gave me the best, least bloody shave of my collection. The half-dome curve kept me from too acute an angle, unlike my Trac II razor. It was just as pleasantly heavy as my full-steel Atra razor, suprisingly just as nimble as my swivel-headed Atra Plus razor. When I found I can get top-quality blades at 5/$1 I was hooked.

My only complaint is that the plastic handle is about as sturdy as a Bic pen. Ebarbershop.com has one for $25 that supposedly has an all-metal handle, and retains that nifty hanger-door mechanism--unlike the Merkur razors. I'll probably snap that one up.

I've cut myself maybe three times in four years with this baby, and always because I was trying for that elusive 2-minute shave. Shame on me.

So for those of you with the Mach3 or Quattro razors who suddenly woke up obsolete today...embrace it. Run with it! Quick packing more blades than a kung-fu flick, step back into the 1950s, and throw away a generation of false gimmickry with attendant inflation. Shave smoothly for a dime a day--but give yourself six minutes.

And trim the sideburns all the way off. There's a war on, hippie.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a hoax this Fision... I want the Quintippio wioth 15 extra large blades!
www.quintippio.co.uk