May 08, 2008

Horse 880 - Purple Razors

Whilst doing a spot of shopping at Franklins near where I work, I was in the aisle for razors when I spotted a "two for one" offer on Schick Xtreme 3 "for women". What's remotely remarkable about this is that after comparing the packets side by side, I concluded that apart from the colour of the packaging and the handles of the razors themselves, that they were pretty much identical. So being the "educated" consumer I am, I fronted up to the checkout and attempted to purchase said product.

Upon presenting my goods to the till, the checkout lady gave me a look as though I had contracted leprosy or broken some unearthly social code of conduct.

"You do realise that these are for women? They're purple."

I should like to point out at this juncture that I did walk out of the shop with my purchase and have subsequently found that there is a small material difference between them - the "ladies" razor comes with a strip of Vitamin E for "sensitive areas".

Sensitive areas? Do the manufacturers not realise that running a sharpened blade across one's face whilst at the same time stripping the top layer of skin, slicing through potential blackheads and invariably causing shaving cuts is potentially a "sensitive" operation? Notable characters like Homer Simpson and the Little Aussie Bleeder, Norman Gunston have made satirical comments with regards this. What could possibly be more "sensitive" than one's face?

And since when did products "for women" associate themselves with purple? Traditionally blue was for boys and it was pink which was for girls. Purple if anything suggests either unisex, or more traditionally either royalty or Cadbury (and anyone who wishes to run a razor over a Top Deck or a Dairy Milk quite frankly needs their head read). If you do mix pink and blue you do get a purpley colour, so are they suggesting that these razors have LGBT issues?

I would suggest that because a "women's" razor in theory would be used in places other than one's face (unless being bought by a bearded lady) then they've probably been built under a more stringent standard. Certainly my experience is that it took fewer strokes and there was less irritation than the "man's" razor, so if anything I'd be more likely to buy the product in future.

In the first place, don't I have the ability to buy literally anything in the supermarket? Shouldn't I be able to buy motor oil, sugar, tinned asparagus, sanitary napkins and shaved ham in the same purchase if I so desire?

No Frills has the best policy - white packaging with the word "razors" on the front. No colour, gender, eyebrow raising issues there... which would be just dandy except that the product just doesn't quite cut it.

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