Hyperglide: Is King Of Shave’s Razor A Game-Changer?

hyperglide

King Of Shaves recently announced Hyperglide, a new razor that does not require shaving cream, gel, foam, or soap.  There’s no classic lubrication “strip”–the the entire face of the cartridge is coated with a lubricant that is activated by water.  It just came out in the UK and will shortly be available in the US at select Target stores and target.com.  I was lucky enough to get one of the first units available in the US and I have been using it for a while now.

Hyperglide Technology

Lubrication strips for razors have been around since the 1970’s.  Ostensibly made to help compensate for bad prep and poor shave lather, lube strips soon became mostly a marketing gimick to get consumers to change cartridges more often.  And lube strips haven’t changed much since then.  Schick made an attempt at something new with a “hydrating gel reservoir” in their Hydro razor line, but that is supposed to “hydrate your skin” to help “reduce friction on repeat strokes.”  Most people found the gel left a sticky residue, especially if they used a good lathering shave soap or cream.  Some women’s razors have used gel or soap-like materials but the cartridge is so large (made for shaving legs) that it makes shaving areas like the face difficult.

King of Shaves Hyperglide coating is made specifically to lubricate the skin on contact with water: the entire front surface of the cartridge creates its own shave media.  King of Shaves CEO Will King discussed the technology in his Hyperglide launch presentation:

In addition to the Hyperglide coating, the razor features improvements to the cartridge pivot, an easier cartridge replacement process, and (apparently, to me) slight changes to the cartridge blade’s angle and spacing to make rinsing easier, compared to their Azor razor.

While Hyperglide is a five blade razor (sigh!) with a trimming blade on the back of the cartridge, King of Shaves is actively investigating using the technology in other types of razors, including a double edge razor!

So How Does It Shave?

Pretty damned well.

I get an excellent shave using only water with this razor.  For me it works best with very good shave preparation: either shaving right after a shower or using a good prep soap like MR GLO, plus generous rinsing.  As long as I keep my face wet and rinse the razor occasionally I can get a damn fine shave (DFS) with one or two passes, and almost baby’s butt close (BBS) with three passes–yes, I’ve done a three pass shave with just water.  The cartridge is just a tad large for me to get BBS all over; I always seem to have a tiny bit of stubble left on a couple areas of my neck.  But that’s only “by feel”…it looks just fine.

Even more surprising to me, I didn’t get any irritation.  No razor burn, no ingrown hairs, no nicks or cuts.  Nothing.  And no residue.

If I used less prep (say, just rinsing with hot water for 30 seconds before starting) and only water, the shave was a little less comfortable but still acceptable for a DFS quality result, again without irritation.

hyperglide front back

Trying different shave lather products produced a variety of results for me (though all were entirely acceptable): “thinner” products like shave oils and non-lathering gels provided better shaves, while “thicker” products like traditional shave lather seemed to give me a shave that was comfortable but maybe not quite as close (but still quite good).  It seems to me that Hyperglide likes to get as close to the skin as possible for it work work well.

Will Hyperglide make me throw all my DE razors, brushes, creams, and soaps into the waste bin?  Well, no.  I’m a shaving snob and I admit it–I enjoy the shaving experience too much.  But will I keep one in my office and take one when I travel?  Absolutely.  And for the general public?  In my opinion Hyperglide is a real step forward in razor technology and is a game-changer for mass-market razors.

Hyperglide is available now in the UK through retailers Boots, Tesco, ASDA, and Sainsbury’s.  It will be available in the US exclusively through target.com and “select” Target stores.

Related Posts:

How To Shave While Travelling

Proglide Altnernatives

 

 

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Comments

  1. The Dean says

    It certainly is a beautiful design. And, I will probably give it a test and compare it to the Fusion ProGlide Styler (which for me is the pinnacle of cartridge shaving), though I have no intention of going back to carts on a regular basis.

    The idea of promoting shaving using only water bothers me a bit. Even if the coating allows for a superb glide, it offers no cushion or protection for the face. I’m sure that would be fine for some, but not for me.

    Finally, and I guess this is to be somewhat expected from a CEO speaking at a product launch, Will King comes off as an unbearable putz.

      • The Dean says

        Notice I didn’t say you WERE a putz, simply that IMO you came off as one at that presentation. Having attended too many presentations of this sort, I can say you are in very good company. It might also be useful to note I am an insufferable critic, with a short attention span and a limited tolerance for marketing puffery. So, there’s that/

        But I promise to try your new product and give you my honest evaluation, good or bad.

        • John says

          A name like “The Dean” and you’re calling Mr. King a putz?

          In the words of Harry Callahan, “You’re a legend in your own mind.”

          • The Dean says

            Not to belabor this, but I didn’t call him a Putz. Perhaps some reading comprehension is in order, John. More importantly, IMO one should not be reluctant to speak their mind no matter their perceived status. Cowering to those with money and power is the easy (and typical) thing to do, I guess.

            And “The Dean” is a lifelong nickname, not a statement by me.

            But enough of this, let’s try the razor!

      • Brian Wright says

        @Will King: Though I love my DE, I hate our TSA so this will be, provided I enjoy the product during a test run, in my flight bag. Your razor will be less scary than an empty DE razor (read the sarcasm) and less hazardous than shaving cream that isn’t in a can (again, read the sarcasm) and as such will mean that I only have to take a carry on. And tell your wife the advert was pretty cool. BTW, no putz behavior noted in your presentation.

  2. Midwest Blade says

    I have been through the “purist stage” of DE Wet Shaving and come to appreciate there are many acceptable ways to shave. I most likely will give this a try when it becomes available to us here in the US.

  3. Steve says

    I think the guy gives a heck of a presentation and does not come off as a “putz” like some other reader said.

    Been DE shaving almost 10 years, but I got an open mind. I’ll try the product when it reaches the US.

  4. Marisol says

    Ooh! So glad he mentioned that women will like it, too! I immediately thought- “Yes! Women are always in a hurry, this will be the perfect razor to shave the gams while in the shower!”
    Now, tell your Tigress to put together a commercial aimed at women & you’ll be set.
    Can’t wait to try it out!
    And, Mr. King- you do NOT come off as a putz… I should know, I’ve dated my share!

  5. Eddie says

    I amnot a fanof the design, but somewhat intrigued by the whole shaving with just water capability. I wonder, though if the Hyperglide coating will last the lifetime of the cartridge for someone that can really stretch the usefulness of one. Also, I hope that the materials/ingredients of the Hyperglide coating are made available. Nothing worse than a manufacturer witholding this information.

    • Erik says

      Yes to all of this, but the question of the coating lifespan stood out the most.

      And yes, Mr. King, your presentation was annoying but all I care about is how your product works. But simple ads/videos always seem better unless you are Steve Jobs.

  6. Doug Johnston says

    I miss being able to buy King of Shaves gel at retailers in the US., so I’m happy it’ll be back at Target. The gel is very good, but it takes a little getting used to because it’s different from the canned products we normally have available in the US. I’m looking forward to trying their new razor. I admire Will King for starting such a successful business.

  7. Terry phillips says

    I am sure they would sell more if a more traditional shape IE Mach 3, but why all those blades?2or3 would be more than ample.

  8. cnuulhu says

    Hunh, I have been looking for a kit for quick “emergency descruffing” on the go; if this allows that kit to effectively be just one piece, I would be quite interested.

  9. says

    I thought I’d never buy a cartridge razor again, but I’m probably going to have to investigate this, for travel purposes at least.

    I have to say, I’m slightly disappointed with them joining the five blades club. Maybe Gillette/Schick have convinced so many men that they need the extra blade that it’s hard to sell a cartridge with 4. Hopefully they’ll never entirely disappear down the “add yet another gimmick” rabbit hole. I think it was discovering their Alphagel back in school that got me looking into alternative shaving products, so I’d say I’m a fan of King of Shaves, although they don’t feature in my current shaving setup.

    • The Dean says

      I’m guessing sales figures (and maybe even some product research) convinced them to join “the five blades club”. After 5-blade razors, and even to this day, many 2 and 3 blade razors (disposable and refillable) and carts are readily available at nearly every store.

      I can’t speak for others, but I didn’t toss my two blade handle when I bought the Mach3, nor did I dispose of the Mach3 when I bought the Fusion. Had the Fusion given me an inferior shave, I would have gladly set it aside and continued to use the Mach3. But the Fusion gave me a much superior shave, so I stuck with it.

      Yes, Gillette and the others spend a lot of money pushing the 5-blade cart systems. And that money can get one to try it. But do you think men chose to continue to use an inferior razor, when they another that is readily available, due to advertising? I think it’s become fairly clear that for many men, if not most, 5 blades actually work better.

      Yes, we shaving snobs like to think more blades are a gimmick. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve converted to DE shaving and I don’t plan on looking back. But I can still get a fabulous shave with a Fusion. Something I’m not sure I ever got with a 2-blade system.

      • The Dean says

        The sentence “After 5-blade razors, and even to this day…” should read “After the introduction of 5-blade razors, and even to this day…”

        My bad, sorry.

  10. says

    As most of you will know, I’m not a fan of ‘multi-blade’ cartridge razors and always question the need for so many blades. They are fashioned more for ‘good marketing’ than ‘good shaving’. However, I’d like to congratulate Will and his team for coming up with such an innovative concept which will, I’m sure, sell well (if not stunt the sales on their oils, gels and creams?!)
    I await the DE version with anticipation!

  11. Erik says

    I find this development very interesting even though I do not think it will change my shaving habits much. I will be glad to test it sometime. I like the fact that King of shaves seems to be challenging the current trend of adding all kinds of redundant features to the cartridge. I would not at all be surprised if you could cut into a substantial piece of Gillette’s market share with this razor and I hope that it does. A bit of sserious competition might bring down cartridge prices to an acceptable level. I do however note to my dismay that the cartridges of the hyperglide will cost over 3 pounds a piece. Is there any plan of cutting the retail price once the development costs have been compensated?

  12. Terry phillips says

    Well I have just tried the Azor version of this razor,I could not find the Hyperglide in my town,Oh dear I don’t like to say it but the design of this razor was all wrong to me,I have been wet shaving for fifty years now never have I seen such a design as this.The blade seems to lean away from the face making it very awkward to manoeuvre round the jaw line.The swivel hinge is a flexible plastic,but you have to press hard on the razor to get it to flex,not a good thing. Sorry but this is how it was for me, you may find it different .

  13. Mike Beech says

    Having used Cartridge razors for years, latterly K of S, I realised that rashes i was getting on a regular basis may well be due to use of these
    products. As an experiment used my 70`s DE Razor,after a few days
    rash eased. I invested in new Razor, and now no longer have rashes.
    I need to shave Daily, and actually quite enjoy it. Am trying out different blades to see which suits me best. Now have a new Adjustable razor which is great.

  14. says

    I stood in front of the selection of Hyperglides at my local Sainsbury’s in the UK. I was certainly going to buy one.

    But the price of £10 for the razor and just one cartridge just made me spin on my heels and scoot on out.

    It may be a game changer in terms of quality of shave from a cartridge, but it is a game maintainer in terms of the unacceptable price of cartridge shaving.

    Sorry, Mr King, I fully support your taking down of the big boys but while I understand you are here to make money, I can’t go for that price point.

  15. says

    This razor would work for someone with soft facial or body hair. My facial hair is the equivalent of steel wool, and it is best chopped with a straight razor off a 12k hone. Of course, some hot lather would also be in order.

  16. bob says

    I’ve been waiting (somewhat) patiently for the Hyperglide, since the first time I read the previews of it.
    There aren’t any Target stores near me, so I ordered mine from their website.
    Hate admitting that I’m a little too excited about the idea that my wait is nearly over. Can’t wait to take it for a test drive!!!

  17. Johan says

    Meh. I never fell for modern cartridges (old time Trac and DE user), and I also think this looks more like a surgery room monstrosity than a razor.
    It may shave well, but I got great results with single (and twin) blade razors for the last 30 years as well. This razor looks like a solution for a problem that does not exist.
    Well written review though!

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