Saturday, March 18, 2006

Fusion Fizzle

Well, it's been about a month now, since I purchased the new Fusion Razor. By Gillette, as they say. Let's see--a month...that equals about 7-8 shaves for me. That should be a pretty good test.

As some of you will remember from an earlier posting, my first time shaving with the Fusion was rather underwhelming. The shave, while fairly smooth, should have been smoother. I thought there was a bit much pulling and scratching, but the end result was a very, very close shave. Probably close enough where a lot of people wouldn't bother shaving the next day.

But the Fusion started to fizzle, the more I used it. It seemed that the blades dulled rapidly and what wasn't all that smooth a shave in the first place, quickly became even less so. While still cutting close to the skin, the much-touted comfort of the shaving experience wasn't there for me. The large head of the razor was a distraction, requiring too much attention to keep the five blades evenly pressed upon the skin. And because of the razor's width, it was impossible to get right under the nose, or even to make a clean cut on your sideburns. Gillette does include a single blade on the opposite side of the razor for getting into those tight spaces, but I found its use counter-intuitive and again had difficulty finding the optimum angle for that blade to cut on.

All in all, I much preferred the 3-bladed Mach 3 razor, also by Gillette. I found that unit to be very comfortable to maneuver, very smooth, with little pulling. While its closeness doesn't quite match the Fusion's, it was plenty good for me.

Giant multi-national corporations rarely make blunders when developing products like the Fusion, so my dissenting views may not represent the mainstream, nor have I really studied the general public's reception of this pricey razor. I'll just say that, in my humble opinion, Gillette has made a billion dollar goof. If that's the case, look for a new Fusion marketing/advertising campaign and for the price of the razor and blades to start coming down, as the company tries to jumpstart sales. Failing that, the razor will be phased out in a year or two and a new one will take its place. Possibly to "save face," the new razor will be called something like Fusion2 and most assuredly, it will be "new and improved."

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