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July 20, 2007

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Eureka Moment

The oppressive frequency of the need to replace the blades in my Gillette Mach 3 finally drove me to desperation this summer. When a pricey box of 20 razor cartridges ran out in a matter of weeks, I began hunting for an alternative. I have found it.

Just like this Ask MetaFilter poster, I was led to the Merkur 1904 stainless steel “Hefty Classic” double-edged safety razor by a post on Cool Tools. After reading the unanimous raves of the MeFirati, I bought the razor, a badger-hair shaving brush, and some shaving cream, and put blade to face.

Wonderful. It’s this solid, stubby metal instrument with a delicate platinum blade that bows so gracefully when you screw it in place. Few moments in masculine hygiene are as satisfying as making smooth, perfect rectangles appear on your face where foam and hair had been just before. I’m a full-fledged member of the cult now. My gaudy, plastic Mach 3 is officially retired. Does this make me old-school yet?

Posted July 20, 2007 at 5:43 | Comments (5) | Permasnark
File under: Beauty, Briefly Noted


My favorite line from the Amazon comments:

"This razor returns one to an Augustinian sense of progress and history."


This reminds me of the wetshaving craze from a year or so back. It's nice to have first-person testimony.

Nice work, Matt, I made the switch a while back myself. All apologies to Warren Buffet, but I just can't justify supporting Gillete's industrial razor complex. I still use my Mach 3 when traveling as TSA doesn't cotton to razor blades much.

Wow. I've always kinda admired Gillette for the Mach 3, not because I love the razor, but because of how they hooked me on it. I got a free one in the mail on my eighteenth birthday, along with the papers to register for the draft. It was as if they were saying to me, 'You are now eligible to be shot in a war zone, you better take this razor.'

Anyway, I know others who've been on the Mach 3 for years simply because of this gimmick. And I've bought probably hundreds of dollars of new blades all because the first was free.

To be honest, even after reading your glowing post, I'm sure I will buy plenty more Mach 3 blades out of sheer inertia. Damn you Gillette...

Posted by: Dustin on July 20, 2007 at 05:13 PM

Despite the inherent ridiculosity of 5 blades, it was when they put the batteries and computer chips in to make "power razors" that they really lost me... Does anyone have one of these and what is the benefit?

Here's Gillette's reasoning (emphasis mine): "Facial hair grows in different directions. That means that men often take multiple strokes to get a close shave, risking irritation and missed hairs. Turn on M3POWER™ and a motor sends micropulses to the blade. You can shave close and thoroughly in one easy power stroke." Whaaaa?

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