Razor Technology: 2010

Keeping up with the latest trends in music (Ke$ha in, Amy Winehouse out) and technology (iPad in, Kindle out) is easy. But razor technology is a different story. Even though razors are an everyday essential, it’s hard to keep track of what’s new, hot and different. And forget about asking the store stock guy for help on the subject. (You’ll be lucky if he’s even able to direct you to the razors.)

So here’s a primer on the two chart-topping cartridge razors, the Gillette Fusion ProGlide and Schick Quattro, and one best-selling electric razor, the Braun Pulsonic 790cc -- with insight from Michael Gilman, blogger for his site, GroomingGuys.com.

Gillette Fusion ProGlide

This upgrade to the world’s best-selling shaving system, the five-blade Fusion, incorporates a blade with thinner edges that’s covered in a low-resistance coating to slice with less tug and pull. A blade stabilizer has been added to keep the blades properly spaced apart, and the Lubrastrip is 25 percent bigger to help the razor glide across the face more easily. “Gillette has probably maxed out the number of blades at five, so they’re focusing now on making the quality of the blades better, and a better moisture strip,” says Gilman. “They succeed here.”

Schick Quattro Titanium

Most blades are made of stainless steel. The latest improvement to the popular Quattro line is clear from the name: titanium. Schick uses a coating of this precious metal on the four blades for a dramatically sharper cutting edge that doesn’t get dull as quickly. Its grip is now ribbed as well, for an easier hold. “Razors are kind of like golf clubs. Everyone is looking for new materials to make them with. What kind of difference they make is up in the air. I shaved with the Quattro Titanium just the other day, though, and I did get a really close shave,” says Gilman. 

Braun Pulsonic 790cc

Braun’s proprietary Pulsonic Technology oscillates the electric 790cc at 10,000 micro-vibrations per minute to help deliver an outstanding close and comfortable shave. Its two shaving surfaces also pivot and flex to contour the face, and you can clean, lubricate and dry the shaver with a simple press of a button. “There’s a lot of validity to the Pulsonic Technology. Barbers will do an aggressive massage with their hands to get the whiskers loose and the face putty-like for a better shave. It’s the same basic idea here,” says Gilman.

by Greg Melville