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Let's talk Gillette

I liked the vintage Gillette razors and their DE blades. I'll keep using the blades as long as they are good quality. That's all I'm interested in from them.

Proctor & Gamble bought Gillette for $57 billion back around 2005. That gives you an idea of how much money is being made to support such a price. Ultimately, the consumer pays for this in the prices of the products they buy. Gillette lost me back when they came out with insanely overpriced "cartridge systems" and planned obsolescence pushed by huge advertising campaigns. They came up with the strategy and pushed it on consumers as a way to grow their revenues. I didn't ask for or need any of that.
 
I don't pay attention to advertising, mainly because I used to work as a technical/advertising writer for a small synthetic oil company that made a superior product at a premium price that was and still is a great product. Frustrated, I coined the term "lubricity," because I couldn't find a better way to describe why our product outshined the big oil company's product, and voila, the common man ate it up. I would tell you what you wanted to hear as long as you wanted to hear it and then find another angle to sell more product more often even if you didn't want or need it, because frankly Fear Of Missing Out is nothing new, and we all like new, right? Advertising is just creative writing at best and outright manipulation at worst, but rarely the truth. Don't let advertising define you--using a product does not mean you buy into what the company is putting out there. Half of the advertising is being done by underpaid young'uns with bills to pay, and what they put out there isn't necessarily what they believe but what their bosses want, because at the end of the day, $12k (in late 80s money) just doesn't go far enough for a family of 3.
 
When I first started shaving cartridge razors were just being introduced. I've actually worked in advertising on a local level for nearly 35 years. One thing I learned working with large agencies is they often have little concept of the product or its intended market.
 
I liked the vintage Gillette razors and their DE blades. I'll keep using the blades as long as they are good quality. That's all I'm interested in from them.

Proctor & Gamble bought Gillette for $57 billion back around 2005. That gives you an idea of how much money is being made to support such a price. Ultimately, the consumer pays for this in the prices of the products they buy. Gillette lost me back when they came out with insanely overpriced "cartridge systems" and planned obsolescence pushed by huge advertising campaigns. They came up with the strategy and pushed it on consumers as a way to grow their revenues. I didn't ask for or need any of that.
I think 2004 saw the Mach 3 Turbo? as last „genuine“ Gillette product so it’s not like P&G is the solely responsible inventor of the cartridge craze. Yet they saw the potential and exploit it until today.
 
I think 2004 saw the Mach 3 Turbo? as last „genuine“ Gillette product so it’s not like P&G is the solely responsible inventor of the cartridge craze. Yet they saw the potential and exploit it until today.
I know, Gillette created the strategy long before P&G bought them. I was just amazed at the amount P&G spent to acquire Gillette in anticipation of future revenues. Gives an idea of the scale. P&G bought a lot of other consumer product businesses along the way.
 

AimlessWanderer

Remember to forget me!
Interesting perspectives on the branding and advertising, folks. Does branding carry as much weight as it used to?

Without taking them off, and looking at the label, I couldn't tell you who made the jeans I'm wearing, or the short on my back. No idea. Don't care. They keep covered what needs to be covered, look reasonable, seem durable enough, and haven't disintegrated whenever I've run them through the sock muncher (washing machine). I look for stuff that appears up to the job, at a price I am happy to pay, be that clothing, cookware, or anything else.
 
that promotes nonsensical illusions about ever improving shaves with their product
There are a number of these kinds of sketches that make that point, that have been around for well over a decade. Other than a few purists, just how perfect does a shave have to be? And after a certain point, can people actually tell the difference?
 
Gillette, as well as Schick and
ASR, have been promoting “nonsensical illusions about ever improving shaves with their product” for the last 100+ years. It’s been a never ending succession of gimmick after gimmick trying to convince the consumer that their current product provides a better shave than their previous product and their competitors product.

Edited to add that other companies popped up with their own gimmicks such as Rolls and Autostrop but they didn’t survive.
 
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Gillette, as well as Schick and
ASR, have been promoting “nonsensical illusions about ever improving shaves with their product” for the last 100+ years. It’s been a never ending succession of gimmick after gimmick trying to convince the consumer that their current product provides a better shave than their previous product and their competitors product.

Edited to add that other companies popped up with their own gimmicks such as Rolls and Autostrop but they didn’t survive.
True. But there is an arguement to be made that we've moved from gimmick to 'The Emperor Has No Clothes'.
 
True. But there is an arguement to be made that we've moved from gimmick to 'The Emperor Has No Clothes'.
Maybe, but I don’t see any difference in what they’re doing today than when they were trying to fool consumers into believing they had to have a Blue Tip or a Red Tip or an adjustable or a Senator or a Knack or a Tech and on and on in order to get the best darn shave in the history of shaving.
 
Maybe, but I don’t see any difference in what they’re doing today than when they were trying to fool consumers into believing they had to have a Blue Tip or a Red Tip or an adjustable or a Senator or a Knack or a Tech and on and on in order to get the best darn shave in the history of shaving.
For one thing, you didn't have to buy different blades every time a new razor came out. There are some reasonable differences to the razors mentioned. For example, the blue tip was somewhat mild, and it ended up being a razor a lot of women used, even though it wasn't marketed to them. An adjustable is different from a non-adjustable, a 3 piece from a butterfly.

I don't think current TWS is so bad for it, but in the cartridge world, I don't know that the moisturizing strip, the moisturizing strip with menthol, the double moisturizing strip with extra moisturizing, and of course, as we've been talking about the never ending addition of blades, and.. the weird tilt/roll/wobble/vibrate handles... it seems more over the top, mostly useless, jacks up prices sort of thing. Late stage capitalism is because of these things, though snake oil and marketing have been around forever, there are only so many ways to market a basic thing, and those ways are running out. Capitalism only works on growth, and the only way to grow things is to have people buy, and if a basic good item that lasts does the trick, then you have to convince people that fast/cheap/novelty is all that matters...and with that, you can only drive your prices so low by using third world slave labor and shoddy materials, and you can only push marketing so far... as we see, people do start turning away from it. And at some point people will realize they don't need a seven blade titanium handled, headlight so you can shave in the dark, cartridge razor, with glow in the dark cartridges with child proof locks and laser etched designs. You can't do parody anymore, for all I know some of what I just made up actually exists.
 
And all the different models (gimmicks) that Gillette made were simply to sell more razors and make more profit, as they should have.The same thing they’re doing today. Gillette obviously saw a need to continually re-invent their products, if not they would have only been selling the double ring and three hole blades 70 years later when the Trac II came out. I just find it interesting that they are held to a different standard today than they were in the “good old days”.

But this has all been discussed to death numerous times in the past, and in a month or so someone else will decide it needs to be discussed to death again and the same things will be repeated.
 
Facts. And to many’s shock and horror I get an absolutely fantastic shave with a Trac II cartridge, just as I do with a straight, or DE and SE. :)
I got myself an Indian PII for Christmas, excellent shaves if you shave daily - with a bit of stubble not so much. This is the farthest that I go, no swivel head, nothing with more than 2 blades and definitely no Lubrastrip or such!

03BFC00B-545B-4317-B344-089E87EB1AD8.jpeg
 

OkieStubble

The Men Who Sniff at Goats
I got myself an Indian PII for Christmas, excellent shaves if you shave daily - with a bit of stubble not so much. This is the farthest that I go, no swivel head, nothing with more than 2 blades and definitely no Lubrastrip or such!

View attachment 1432688

Very much just like mine. I have this set,

vintage-1974-gillette-trac-ii-deluxe_1_a18a7fc25d2e6feb59cfb1e745663324.jpg


With this lifetime supply of cartridges. :)

$Haul.jpg
 
I got into traditional wet shaving because I had recently moved out of my parents home and needed new cartridges for my Mach3. The local store didnt have any Mach 3 blades, so I brought a Wilkinson Sword Classic (the black plastic one) & blades. At first I thought that this "old fashioned style" razor would just be a temporary thing but I loved it so much I binned the Mach 3 and fell in love with traditional wet shaving.

Personally I think that Gillettes business model has never changed, it has always been about selling blades. With carts the manafucturers can make sure that people only buy their blade, something that Gillette could no longer do once patients started running out on de blades at around the time they adopted cartridges. I hated that "Toxic masculinity" advert, but as I was already collecting vintage Gillettes at this point it didn't really effect me. As for Gillettes modern KCG range, I'm not interested in the razor as I already have an R89, a 34c and the head of an Executive Shaving Company, Braveheart (basically an R89 style head but more agressive) I have enough of that style of DE. I would be interested in trying out their blades, if only I could get through the mountain of Wilkinson Sword Classic (German) & Tiger Platinum blades that I already have. A goal that is becoming ever more difficult given my ever growing love of SR shaving.
 
I liked the vintage Gillette razors and their DE blades. I'll keep using the blades as long as they are good quality. That's all I'm interested in from them.

Proctor & Gamble bought Gillette for $57 billion back around 2005. That gives you an idea of how much money is being made to support such a price. Ultimately, the consumer pays for this in the prices of the products they buy. Gillette lost me back when they came out with insanely overpriced "cartridge systems" and planned obsolescence pushed by huge advertising campaigns. They came up with the strategy and pushed it on consumers as a way to grow their revenues. I didn't ask for or need any of that.
Bingo. Gillette has been a publicly-traded company for ages, meaning every move they make is being scrutinized by shareholders looking for whatever they consider is a reasonable return on their investment. If that means over-engineered mutli-blade razors with powered handles, then so be it. If it means reluctantly dipping into their past with a line of "retro" DE product, that's what they do, although I have no idea how much dough that's making for them right now. I harbor no hate toward the brand at all, just a cheerful indifference (although I did have a nice shave with a Silver Blue in my new Parker Semi-Slant the other day, so there's that).
 
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