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Cheap Razor Blades

Why Cheap Razor Blades?

Cheap Razor Blades; everyone is looking for them.  It is no wonder given that latest Gillette Razor Blades are sold within the United States at over four dollars per blade.  That's nowhere close to the definition of Cheap Razor Blades.  What has begun as a concept of disposable Cheap Razor Blades many years ago is now a premium consumer product.  The origin and history of the razor market will help us to understand the demand for cheap razor blades.

Origin of Shaving and Cheap Razor Blades

The earliest evidence of men shaving goes back to the civilization of ancient, classic Greece where shaving was viewed as an indication of refinement.  Bronze razors were popular in Europe as early as 2,000 B.C. In fact, a razor set dated 1,500 B.C. is held as an exhibit in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.  The shaving devices back then were often crude and even dangerous.  Many tribes around the world still use pieces of shell, shark's teeth or chips of flint (mineral quartz) as cheap razor blades.

The open straight razor has been around for many years.  Having this sharp open blade near the throat is not something that a man looks forward to every morning.  Although safety razors were invented during the 1870s, they are far from being cheap razor blades.  Safety razors back then were quite rare and expensive too.

Invention of the Not So Cheap Gillette Razor Blades

The Gillette safety razor invented by King Gillette was brought into the market place in 1904.  The ability to dispose cheap razor blades which became dull with use was the cornerstone of the Gillette company's business model for many years.  Gillette's innovation was to earn profits from cheap razor blades with short life cycles.  In fact, it was worth it to the Gillette company to give away the razors and earn money on the disposable cheap razor blades. Through blocking patents, the Gillette company has been able to prevent competitors from legally produce cheaper version of razor blades which fit into the Gillette razor handle.

Fast forward to 2012, those cheap razor blades have evolved to expensive razor blades with every new product launch of Gillette razor blades.  There has been almost a doubling of the Gillette razor blade prices with each new generation of Gillette razors.  This spurred on a black market for fake Gillette razor blades especially those cheap razor blades imported from China.  Go check out eBay and you will see fake cheap razor blades offered as substitutes for the more premium Gillette razor blades.  The variety of fakes for sale from China has officially moved beyond the traditional Gucci bags and Rolex watches.  Today, top selling consumer brands such as Oral-B toothbrushes, Duracell batteries, and Gillette razor blades are often counterfeited.

China's Cheap Razor Blades Manufacturing

China is a global center for the production of counterfeit goods in spite of the Chinese government's best efforts to support international intellectual property.  The Chinese established a Copyright Protection Center in 1998 but poverty and a counterfeit accepted culture will continue to drive the growth of cheaper pirated versions of software, videos, books and other consumer goods.  It is believed that many of the counterfeit companies previously operated out of Taiwan or Hong Kong have moved their operations to mainland China.

The city of Wenzhou is a small coastal city in southeast Zhejiang. Located on the south bank of the Qu River, this city is in love with capitalism.  With a local population of over a million people, the city is a commercial center and trading post.  When Beijing first loosened its regulations on private business activities in the 1980s, it was the Wenzhou business people who took this this freedom to the limit.  Wenzhou is a manufacturing center for locks, shoes, cigarette lighters (70% of the world supply), and cheap razor blades.

So the Import from China entrepreneur looking for a supply of made in china cheap razor blades should definitely investigate the manufacturers in this city.  It may be your best chance for sourcing from China.