The 50 Most Iconic Designs of Everyday Objects

11. Safety Razor

Year Invented: 1847

Designer: William S. Henson

The basic razor was invented by William S. Henson. The design was easier to use on oneself than the previous straight razor design, but in 1880, Fredrick and Otto Kampfe improved it by adding a blade holder that distanced the blade from the handle, and allowed the hair to be cut without damaging the skin. In 1901, King Camp Gillette improved upon the razor again, creating a disposable double-edge blade, which was widely used by American troops in World War I. In the 1970s, a disposable version of the design was adapted to further reduce risk, and the razor blades were embedded into a disposable plastic cartridge, which is similar to the disposable razors we see today.

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