Sunday, November 21, 2010

Wilkinson Hydro

I was recently invited to a promotional event about Wilkinson Hydro shaving products. I couldn't go. These turned up yesterday:

You can find all you need to know about these products here:

Wilkinson Hydro

And some reviews


These are not the sort of thing that those of us who have returned to traditional shaving are likely to favour. But I will give some of this stuff a try with an open mind.

Something I found particularly interesting was a document that came with the samples describing the conclusions of some research for Wilkinson by The Future Laboratory.

I quote:

.. new research shows how men's attitudes and behaviour are evolving to define new trends in facial shaving, in line with the seismic changes all around us.

The next decade is set to be the most challenging, problematic, optimistic and imaginative period of our lives, and has been dubbed the turbulent teens by The Future Laboratory. Jobs, earning power social standing and security are all under threat, affecting the changing role model of masculinity. Three trends are identified:

Sharp Shaving - In response to flashy consumerism, we are seeing a renewed interest in traditional shaving styles, steeped in shared history and authenticity yet fashion led, which has led to Sharp Shaving. (Me err..../)

Straight Shaving - In troubled times, men are reverting to a more conventional manly stereotype, giving rise to Straight Shaving, an overtly masculine, no frills, no nonsense and confidence asserting attitude to shaving.

Spa Shaving - Indulgence is no longer restricted to women. Spa Shaving sees men taking the time, money and effort to take care of themselves to look and feel their best, as part of a holistic grooming routine.

These trends are portrayed through the Three Ages of  Shaving, defining male typologies that embody them:

The Forced Shaver - the young rebel who won't shave, but knows he needs to in order to conform and move forward in life.

The Connoisseur Shaver - the dapper dandy who wants the authentic art of shaving to express his fashion style.

The Revitalised Shaver - the older gent re-energised about life and caring for himself through shaving, looking healthier and happier.

The research applied a combination of quantitative and qualitative methodologies and analyses, spanning extensive desk research, a consumer survey, expert interviews to expand on key themes and consumer vox pops.

While the motivations behind men's shaving habits are many and complex, the barriers to shaving are equally intriguing. As noted by Mark Tungate, author of Marketing to Men and Luxury World: "The best way to get men to shave is to make the experience more pleasurable. If there was a way of making the act of shaving as pleasurable as going to the barber, I reckon many more men would do it"

WOW! I cannot quite tie in these conclusions with the Hydro range of products - are they a return to tradition?

1 comment:

  1. Just to add a brief review of the Hydro 5:

    I used my Hydro 5 wih the Hydro shaving cream applied by hand. What a mess compared with applying by brush! I really didn't like the greasiness of the cream. Despite misgivings, I went through my 3 pass routine and ended up with a very comfortable shave. Not particularly close, but my skin felt very good indeed.

    Today, I used my brush and Martin de Candre soap. Much more enjoyable. The 3 pass shave again was very comfortable. The fact is, the razor is very effective. It does clog up a bit but more regular use would lead to a better understanding of the amount and type of lather neeed for an effective shave with minimum problems.

    The experience doesn't tempt me away from DE shaving. Apart from anything else I cannot get away from a sense of waste in spending so much on blades. About the best deal for the Hydro 5 seems to be around £1.38. Even if it lasted a couple of weeks, it's a daft price to pay when you have mastered DE shaving and can get decent blades for less than 10p.

    The Hydro is a very effective performer and I found it more comfortable than my Gillette M3 Power and Mach 3 set ups. But I'm soon going back to DE razors.

    The Hydro balm is an excellent low price after shave treatment.