So, there I stood, once again, staring at shelves full of razors and blades. And, once again, I left without buying anything.
I couldn’t bring myself to pay $2 each for blades to fit my Gillette Sensor handle at home, even though that was cheaper than any of the other options, all of which had three or more blades.
Two bucks a blade seems high, especially in packs of 10. It feels odd to drop $20 for razor blades.
The dilemma is not new. King Gillette invented the safety razor in the early 1900s with the idea of making a profit selling the disposable blades. Since then, manufacturers have worked to make their blades handle specific. The idea is to lock you into their product.
That problem is compounded in my case because I’m stubborn, old-fashioned and cheap. If I had my way, I’d still be using the Schick Slim Twin II blade with the University of Cincinnati Logo on it that was given to me in college. They don’t sell blades for that anywhere that I know of.
I can get generic blades to fit a Gillette Atra or Trac II handle for about 60 cents a blade, but nobody sells those handles anymore. The blades for my Sensor are still cheaper than the three-to-five blade options. Which is good, because I stubbornly cling to my two-blade approach. It works, so why fix what ain’t broke?
Adding to the aggravation is that my coveted Slim Twin blades are still available - in disposable razors that cost less than the cheapest blades.
Over the years I’ve tried many options. Electric razors were too plucky, in the sense that they felt like they were plucking the hairs out. Straight razors were too scary.
I tried the old-school single-blade safety razors, but couldn’t get the hang of it. I quit trying after losing the first pint of blood from my face. The only thing I haven’t tried is a Nair-type of hair remover.
I suppose I’ll eventually give in and buy $20 worth of Sensor blades, or even try a three, four or five-blade option. Who knows, maybe I’ll like it better.
But for now, I’ve got a drawer full of Slim Twin disposables to get me by.