New and Improved doesn't always mean better.

New and Improved doesn't always mean better

Don't you just love it (not!) when a manufacturer of a product you have been using for years decides to improve upon it. "New and Improved" I really dislike with a passion those words because it means that once again I will have to go in search of something else.

I have been using Shell gasoline for years and years and years. My gas of choice, until recently. Enter Shell's Nitrogen enriched gasoline. I stopped to get gas and notice the signs and all the banners in celebration of their "new gas." I go home and mention it to my hubby who just looks at me strangely and tells me that doesn't make sense, why would they do that. Yes, why would they do that? Supposedly, it will make your engine run cleaner, blah, blah blah.

I have a 1996 Mercury Cougar, which is in excellent shape and has a well tuned engine. The next morning, I take off for work and my car is making all kinds of weird noises - knocking, rattling, pinging, and dragging. It felt like I had left the emergency brake on. My car is running so rough to the point that it actually backfired as I drove out of a shopping center parking lot. I'm looking all over the place, thinking that it seriously couldn't be my car.

We decided if the car kept running just a rough after getting gas elsewhere, we would take it in to be checked. Could it just be a coincidence? I had to put up with this annoyance for a week or two until it was time to gas up the car again. Within a day of filling it up with 76 gas, she was back to running normally. It was the gas. Shell has lost pretty much a life time customer and I will never again use their gas.

Shell gasoline is just one of the few products I have had to give up because they new and improved it. Years ago, I used to use Head and Shoulder Dandruff Shampoo. Worked quite effectively until they "New and Improved" it and it caused dandruff. Infusium 23 did the same thing. Wonderful shampoo that my husband has been using for years and I took a liking to it. Didn't have an obnoxious perfume scent and cleaned our hair nicely. Yep, they "new and improved" it and included a wonderful new scent that neither one of us could stand.

Off to search for a new shampoo, but in the meantime searched the store aisles for pre-improved bottles of the old brand they had stuffed in the back of the shelves. We managed to score three or four bottles before they disappeared forever. Do you know how hard it is to find an unscented shampoo! The crazy woman you saw scratching her head and mumbling to herself in the shampoo aisle, that was probably me.

I managed to find two or three candidates on line through and happy to say after trial and error we found a new shampoo that did not have any obnoxious scents and worked for both of us.

Open letter to all manufacturers, please please please don't discontinued the old style when you new and improve your product. It will make life less difficult for those of us who hate change....

What has been "new and improved" in your household lately? Did it force you to change or were you happy with the change?


  1. I like your phrase to 'new and inprove' something. That's a winner for me :-) I have to say that because I do not get attached to prety much anything, it is not so difficult for me to say goodbye to a product that stops performing.
    i do think that your gas story was horrific.I would get upset as well and I'm glad that at least your car is not permanently damaged.

  2. I am with you on the new and improved stuff. To me it implies that the company believes there is something wrong with the product. What a horrible admission. I know I shouldn't say this because I was a big part of the corporate world for many years and helped hire the executives, but, they are not all bright. In fact, it seems that after a while, the higher they go in the company, the dumber they get. When things go wrong, they latch onto 'new and improve' in many forms to save themselves.

    I just reread this comment and realized how cynical it sounds. I apologize for sounding cynical but I saw what I saw and you, the customer, experienced it.

  3. I'm not sure I can think of anything off the top of my head but what I DO hate more than ANYTHING is finding a product I love only to find out later down the line that it doesn't exist anymore. URGH!!!!!!!!

    L'Oreal Feather Lash mascara. Finesse 2 in 1 shampoo. And other such sundry items. Why kill off a good thing, people???!

    If I think of anything New & Improved I'll let you know. :D

  4. OMG your "new and improved" examples are so funny.

    It's also kind of funny because this sort of ties in with what I just posted on my blog about when to stop making changes to a work of art. I guess that can also be seen as a form of trying to make something "new and improved".

  5. Lilly: I guess I will have to learn not to get too attached to products. I'm glad my car wasn't damaged either.

    Margot: You don't sound cynical at all. I used to work for a corporation myself so I understand perfectly. They promote to the level of incompetence.

    Glam: It is more irritating than anything else. Nice to see I'm not the only one.

    Kate: I read your post but didn't have time to comment. Will be by soon. "New and Improving" works of art or old literature to make it more modern, just ruins it. In my opinion it dilutes and destroys something that is unique.

  6. ARGH! *hugs* I'm sorry to hear that, Robin! I can't really think of anything that's happened in my life that's was 'new and improved', although I'd appreciate it if toothpaste that reads "Lemon flavour" actually tastes of lemon, not 'mint with a slight tangy Something to it'.

    I have toothpaste I can use without getting/feeling sick, but if they ever stop making that I'll be in serious trouble. *shudder*

    And that may have been more than you wanted to know. ^-^;


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