Gillette should decide whether “toxic masculinity” is a bigger issue than TOXIC WASTE

The buzz nowadays is around an ad disguised as a political statement fielded by razor company Gillette. The ad can be accessed via an official company post on Twitter and is captioned thus…

“Boys will be boys”? Isn’t it time we stopped excusing bad behavior? Re-think and take action by joining us at . #TheBestMenCanBe

Perhaps the guys at Procter & Gamble which owns the Gillette brand should first decide which of the two is the bigger planetary issue. Is it “toxic masculinity”? Or is it toxic waste.

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Gillette is, first and foremost, known for being a pioneer marketer of disposable plastic razors. While the “innovation” made shaving a lot easier for most men, its success was also hinged on a lot of suckers falling for the clever marketing of an industry in a false-innovation arms race

…two big razor-blade companies – Gillette and Wilkinson Sword (known as Schick in Australia) – have been locked in an escalating arms race ever since businessman King Gillette invented the double-edged safety razor in 1903.

Gillette’s real innovation was in the pricing: he sold the razors at a loss and made his profit on the blades, which had to be replaced every three weeks or so. The ultimate expression of how sneaky the shaving infustry had become was the arrival in 1975 of the disposable razor, made by French company Bic. More than 40 years later, users still throw away razors after relatively few uses.

The worst is that we men fell for it. A century of “innovation” has resulted in a razor having more and more blades (up to six), lubricating strips, tungsten-coating and swivelling heads, all packaged in clear thermoformed blister packs that defy unarmed efforts to open them. The prize: a share of the global male grooming market, estimated to be worth $US60.7 billion by 2020, according to a 2017 report by Euromonitor.

Dishonest marketing aside, by far the biggest issue with Gillette’s bread-and-butter products is the toll they are taking on the environment. A World Economic Forum report recommends that manufacturers of single-use disposable products start marketing “durable equivalents” and “find new ways to deliver the value benefits of things such as disposable razors, diapers and feminine care” so that “consumers are willing to make the switch”. This is following reports going a long way back (but only now being highlighted by the media) of bits and pieces of plastic pollution making their way into the food chain. Indeed, that same WEF report highlights even more alarming findings…

Earlier this year an entire plastic bag, completely intact, was found at the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the ocean’s deepest point; a chilling example of plastic’s pervasiveness throughout the natural environment.

Between addressing the nebulous notion of “toxic masculinity” and working on the more tangible, more measureable, and more actionable challenge of contributing less to environmental degradation, it is well worth the time of the management of Gillette to re-evaluate their priorities. Considering the simple metric probability of success, a smart investor will likely not see any value in investing precious corporate resources in an initiative that aims to “solve” the “problem” of “toxic masculinity”. If they want to be seen to be “doing good”, saving the environment falls more snugly within Gillette’s domain of core competence than dabbling in wishy-washy “gender issues”. That’s simple business sense.

16 Replies to “Gillette should decide whether “toxic masculinity” is a bigger issue than TOXIC WASTE”

  1. Advertisement brand suicide, there’s been a rise in companies who do political statements and activism like this while being delusional into thinking that attacking both your demographic and moralizing them, in a position where it’s a company telling their customers they are future-rapists and murderers will net them praise and sales, most of the people who are celebrating this ad are people who do not buy their products.

  2. Political sideshows are now all over the place. Just let men be proper men. No need for the propaganda. And yeah, plastic not only degrades the env’t, it also messes up our hormones (among other health effects).

  3. Everyone is jumping on the radical-left bandwagon, and more often that not it backfires because the radical-left is so divided. There are all sorts of factions competing with each other to be the most radical, and scratching each other’s eyes out for not being sufficiently right-on about the correct issues.

    Fortunately there is a growing backlash against this sort of nonsense and it will hopefully be left to die in a ditch before the end of the decade.

    As for environmental pollution: practically EVERYTHING is disposable these days, not just razors. You must have noticed that cellphones either break or slow down to the point of unusability after a year or so, compelling you to go and buy another one. I seem to go through tools at a ridiculous rate: everything’s Made in China (or, worse, Made in RP) and falls to pieces after a few uses because they’re made with inferior materials or are just badly-designed. It’s hard to find any product that’s made to last more than a few years.

  4. and while we’re on the subject of disposable shaving razor blades . . .

    i vividly recall a razor blade re-sharpening invention many years ago
    about to be commercially introduced to consumers
    apparently, the inventor claimed that it was not that the blades became dull due to frequent use
    but it was because the keen edge became crooked in time
    upon frequent impact w/ stubble which made it less sharp
    the inventor then engineered a blade-straightening equipment which used magnetic waves
    that re-straightened and retained the blades’ sharpness for eventual re-use
    i would readily conclude that it was either Gillete or Wilkinson who bought the manufacturing rights
    in order to secure the longevity of their business platform
    either that or thugs were sent to cut the inventor’s throat using none other than very sharp blades
    in order to liquidate the competition

    and that ladies and gentlemen is another episode from this week’s presentation
    of the Twilight Zone
    brought to you exclusively by Gillete

  5. I would have thought shareholders would much prefer that Gillette market to as big a share of the market as possible. “Toxic males” need to shave too, as I recall. That’s a market this company’s shareholders wouldn’t want to lose…

    1. The director they got, Kim Gehrig has some weird, pretentious and art-house style commercials on her belt, the commercials are not that popular and generally invoke some Progressive-style imagery and general agitprop Still wonder what was the thought process of them thinking this was a good idea or whether the so-called “Focus Audience” was full of people, particularly the SJW-types.

  6. Is it “toxic masculinity”? Or is it toxic waste. Neither of them. It’s TOXIC MENTALITY!! Boys will never be boys (They’ll be men joining the skewed, wretched mentality of today’s men) and men will never be real men unless their shaving abilities be changed to abilities in using their mind PROPERLY, after all, manhood is NOT measured how BIG their balls & penises are, but how their brainas are fully developed intellectualy and how their hearts are fully enhanced lovingly.

  7. Plastics and steel can be easily recycled. They pollute the environment, if they are thrown away anywhere, anytime. However, if we recycle them; they can be made to other products.

    There is no other solution of these , plastics and steel, other than recycling…if we treat them as waste, they can become the worse pollutants on Earth; because they are not biodegradable.

    Let us all put up a recycling program for these used products and save this Planet Earth, our home !

  8. Honestly, I do think their message: “Be a better man” is not a bad message, if you take it out of context.

    My problem is THE context, the premise. It’s just… dubious, to say the least. The ad is basically man-shaming. You should feel bad for being a (straight white) man because of your “tendency” for violence and sexism. They kind of painted everyone with that wide stroke.

    Catcalling is pretty much antique in the modern times, and sexual harassment is NEVER tolerated but they seem to be implying that it is. Two kids beating up each other while adult fathers just saying “boys will be boys” doesn’t seem to be realistic, or you mean to tell me that the dads don’t know the difference between playfulness and abusive violence? I know it’s just an ad and shouldn’t be taken too seriously, but it’s painting a really wrong image against men everywhere.

    They tell men to stop misogyny, but they do it by spreading misandry instead?

    1. These “activists” want to see being a man made into a complicated effort — probably because being a woman is inherently complicated and they suffer from a bad case of simplicity envy.

      Back in the old days, men went out to hunt and so the skills we evolved were mainly around zeroing in focus of attention on prey and working with other men in the hunting team to stalk and kill it. Women, on the other hand, evolved to deal with the politics surrounding working with other women to hold the fort, tend to kids running around, and maintaining a social structure/dynamic that facilitated all that. This is why women tend to be more insecure about their social status and tend to gossip a lot — because they need to keep their radars up to mitigate any threats to their social status. There’s nothing inherently bad about that. It just is what it is thanks to the selection pressures that shaped the evolution of human society.

      Women were also the primary “gatherers” in hunter-gatherer societies — which is why they are more avid window shoppers, because their brains are wired to evaluate many options, canvass the best value, and test what they bring home to ensure what they gathered does not poison the entire tribe.

      Brain wiring vastly differs between the genders not because of any conspiracy on the part of either side but because nature shaped those roles to ensure survival of the collective. The thing with these snowflake activsts is that they want “equality” but have an ill-conceived working definition of that notion which they then apply to their confused advocacies.

      1. It is the subliminal message that goes into it, “buy my brand”. It is important that the product must stay relevant and a necessity, if people start making their own blade or learn how to resharpen the blade then what would become of the business?

      2. @sarda, “staying relevant”. That’s spot on as far as brand management goes. Disposable razors are now a commodity product which is why some semblance of either “innovation” or “social relevance” needs to be spun around Gillette products to keep them flying off the shelves.

  9. TOXIC AND BIOHAZARD WASTE ARE GOOD go ask CebuDailyFAKENews … and Cebu government.

    Read this:

    CebuDailyFAKENews & Sun*StarDailyFAKENews and all the newspapers in the Philippines including Cebu Government and National Government on Environment are incensed and felt violated University Cebu-Medical (2nd best in the nation according to FAKE NEWS) when their hospital wastes are tossed to the waters of Cebu causing bio-medical hazards.

    The government and Philippine Environment warned residents not to go to the waters because of the hazards. They also fined big time the hospital and bio-hazard company.


    What about Rappler? What do they say? NADA !!! ZILCH !!! Biohazard suit? HAZMAT SUIT? Hazardous Material Suit? What is that?


  10. What you believe is very powerful. If you have toxic emotions of fear, guilt and depression, it is because you have wrong thinking, and you have wrong thinking because of wrong believing.

  11. Quite the opposite to what I remember of the competition, Schick. I’ve been a Schick user for a while, but one thing that encouraged me was the brand’s hilarious advertising placement in a game call Dino Hunters by Kuma Games. I used to play Kuma War (still want to, but they seem to have pulled it down), and it had ads for Dino Hunters. The ads showed a bunch of goofballs hired with a blonde bombshell producer to hunt for dinosaurs in the past (one of the goofballs invented a time machine) for a reality TV show. One funny segment was when the men decided to time travel to Sumer to get a taste of ancient beer and escape the dangerous task of hunting dino eggs, but before they got to it, the bombshell producer named Candy put her boobs out, and they got hypnotized back into hunting dinosaur eggs. It was so full of innuendos and sex references that today’s SJWs would be massively triggered. I played a bit of the multiplayer maps, it was fun for a while. I didn’t get to play the story missions. Although I did buy Schick beforehand, the game ads helped me stick to Schick. There’s even one skit where they hit at the 5-bladed Gilette Fusion. Couldn’t find any Youtube video with the complete ads, they were funny.

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