Pricewatch: Value for Money
L’Oreal Men Expert
€7.99 for 200ml, €39.95 per litre
This “new” gel is made with “hair-softening technology” and a “skin-protect system” that has been “tested under dermatological control”. Amazing, right? A whole technology – a tested one too – aimed at softening stubble and protecting our skin? How could you not love that? Does it matter that the gel seems identical to the gel in the cheaper cans? Or that we are being asked to pay handsomely for all the newness? Yes, it does. This is too dear and too similar to the competition to warrant the expense, even if the packaging does make it look very slick.
Verdict: Is it worth it? No.
Star rating: **
Gillette Fusion ProGlide Gel
€5.99 for 200ml, €29.95 per litre
While L’Oreal promises to protect our skin and soften our beard, Gillette says it will hydrate our skin and deliver a smooth shave with an “enhanced glide”. An enhanced glide? No, we have no idea what that means either and we couldn’t detect any special glideyness. Marketing nonsense aside, this is a good product. The gel comes out in a thick, deep blue spurt and lathers up well. It is widely available and often on special in bigger supermarkets. We’re not sure it is the best a man can get but it is pretty good.
Verdict: Pricey but good.
Star rating: ***
Nivea Men Moisturising
€3.49 for 200ml, €16.95 per litre
This is the cheapest of the four gels that came under the spotlight and when it comes to shaving it is no better or no worse than the dearest options we tried. It wins hands down on price, however. It has a nice fresh fragrance, and soaps up quickly and effortlessly. But it’s all about the price. If you were to use two cans of shaving gel a month, and went with this instead of the dearest option, you would save yourself more than a hundred quid a year. And we don’t think your face would notice the difference.
Verdict: Good value, fuss-free.
Star rating: ****
Ted Baker Step 02
€7.50 for 150ml, €50 per litre
What is Ted Baker doing making shaving gel? This company made its name with shirts with flowery cuffs, and is very good at that – if a little on the pricey side – so why is it moving into the male-grooming market? It is not a success. The gel comes out in weak spurts and, while it is nicely scented, it doesn’t froth up as well as the competition. The size of the bottle is a concern but what troubles most is the price. It works out at €50 a litre, which makes it
three times dearer than the cheapest option and not as good.
Verdict: That’s mad, Ted.
Star rating: *