When King Camp Gillette was born in 1855, razors were expensive items that men typically kept for life and sharpened before each use. Gillette came up with the idea of a disposable safety razor and then set to work inventing it. After struggling to find a way to make a blade that was inexpensive enough to be thrown away after it was worn down, he recruited the help of inventor William Nickerson, who not only helped improve Gillette's design, but also built a machine to harden, hone, grind, and sharpen the blades. Gillette established the American Safety Razor Company (the forerunner to the Gillette Company) and began selling his razors in 1903. The Gillette razor became standard issue for U.S. soldiers during World War I. By 1926, the Gillette Company was producing 2.1 million blades each day, and men rarely went to barbers for a shave, marking a significant shift away from shaving practices of the past. Over the years, Gillette’s invention evolved and became an essential item for both men and women. Gillette razors still exist today and are now some of the most well-known products on the market.