The Schick Quattro titanium coated shaving razor blades
Schick Quattro Titanium is a brand name for a product in the line of shaving razors designed, manufactured and distributed by Wilkinson Sword, the second competitor in the world market, after Gillette. The products are marketed under the Schick brand in North America, Australia and Russia. For the European markets, the company uses “Wilkinson Sword” brand.
The titanium designation of the Schick razor products accounts for the titanium coating on the blades that is claimed to reduce irritation and greatly improve the life cycle of the blade, allowing for a smooth shave and greater value for the money spent on the razor
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Traditionally, razor blades were made of stainless steel and most of them are still made of steel :). Titanium coating was first introduced by Remington for their electric shavers. In order to better understand the Schick Quattro titanium and other similar shaving products that use titanium coating blades, I will detail the process of shaving.
Razor blades are typically formed of a suitable metallic sheet material such as the aforementioned stainless steel, which is slit to a desired width and heat-treated to harden the metal. The hardening operation utilizes a high temperature furnace, where the metal may be exposed to temperatures greater than 1100° C. for up to 10 seconds, followed by quenching. After hardening, a cutting edge is formed on the blade.
The quality of the slitting depends on the friction between the cutting edge of the razor blade and the surface intended to be shaved – that is, your cheeks, or your legs, if you are a lady. In other words, slitting can be very damaging. The smoother the surface between the surface and the blade, the better the slitting.
When the coating is applied on the edges of the blade, a layer is formed that fills up the grinding grooves on the edges – we’re talking about micronized dimensions, so don’t waste time trying to see the with the naked eye on a non-coated razor. This layer thereby reduces friction substantially, lessening damage to the slitted surface and increasing the shaving speed.
The coating is very hard and acts as a shield during the slitting operation. That’s why it also protects the blade, lengthening its life cycle many times over.
Titanium nitride is the coating that is used in shaving blades, such as those used in Schick Quattro titanium razors. There are several methods and processes that are used when forming
a titanium coating.
Titanium nitride coating in particular has long been used in industrial applications for edge retention and corrosion resistance on machine tooling applications, such as drill bits and milling cutters, and it is often cited of improving lifetime by a factor of three or more, hence the 300% number that is used for shaving razor lifecycle improvement.
The Schick Quattro titanium nitride coating is non-toxic and is compliant with the Food and Drug Administration guidelines. Its first use was in use in medical devices such as scalpel blades or orthopedic bone saw blades where sharpness and edge retention are important.