Small razor blade company undercuts big brand names with small prices

By Amy Davis - Reporter/Consumer Expert

HOUSTON - For a guy, getting a close shave is serious business; and it can be expensive. A small start-up razor blade company with a clever marketing campaign is now undercutting big brand names.

It's called Dollar Shave Club. The company received a lot of attention when it began selling blades for a dollar.

"Guys want things really easy. They want things to show up when they need them and that is exactly what Dollar Shave Club does," said Michael Dubin, the founder of Dollar Shave Club.

The company's motto is "Shave time. Shave money."

"It is only a couple bucks a month and so it is the combination of price, convenience and a little bit of fun," added Dubin.

There are three razor packages to choose from online that range in price from $1 to $9 a month for up to five cartridges. The more you spend, the better the razor. The company sends you a box every 30 days.

By comparison, a four pack of Shick Hydro 5's will cost you $12.97. A Gilette Fusion four pack runs about $15.97. So Dollar Shave Club is definitely a money saver; but Local 2 wanted to know if the razors are any good. We asked Local 2's Frank Billingsley, Owen Conflenti, Anthony Yanez and Andy Cerota to try out the Dollar Shave Club for a week and compare the razors to the ones they use now.

"When you are a weather man close shaves are your life," joked Local 2's Chief Meterologist Frank Billingsley.

We treated them to high end shaves and pampering at Rooster's in Bellaire and got their reviews.

Each of the guys tested the middle range blade. A box of four cartridges costs $6 a month.  Andy gave the cheaper blades a thumbs up.

"Huge difference," Cerota told consumer expert Amy Davis. "Immediately, I noticed with the first time I shaved with the blade... much smoother."

Anthony and Frank also preferred the Dollar Shave Club blades to their usual razors. Frank did a cotton test after shaving one side of his face with his usual Gillette Fusion and the other side with the Dollar Shave Club blade. The side shaved with the Gillette razor didn't appear to get as close of a shave.

Only one of Local 2 testers decided to stick with his current razor.

"I gotta use an electric razor because I don't have any time," Owen Conflenti told Davis. "I gotta wake up and run to work."

The guy's results got us wondering, would the razors be a hit with women? To answer that question, we brought in Local 2 reporter Courtney Gilmore.

Courtney gave the middle range blade a try on her legs; but she said she wouldn't make the switch.

"I don't think it was as delicate as a razor that I'm used to," said Gilmore.

Frank was so excited about his new shave, he tipped me off to an even bigger money saving secret. Many claim the same razors sold by the Dollar Shave Club are actually available from Dorco online.

The President of Dorco told another media outlet his company sells the Dollar Shave Club the four and six blade razors that are used in its packages The Dollar Shave Club wouldn't confirm or deny the claim. At Dorco, a six month supply costs just $28. The same number of razors would cost you $54 through the Dollar Shave Club.

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