Wednesday, July 28, 2010


This review is sponsored by our friends at!

Flavor: According to the Wikipedia article on Clorets, there are a few different flavors of Clorets in existence, but a quick Google search really only yields one flavor widely for sale: Green. There's no mention on the pack of a flavor at all, let alone a specific mint, be it pepper or spear or winter. Green, in the gum world, generally denotes a spearmint, but Clorets bucks that trend. Clorets mint isn't a spearmint at all; if I had to classify it, I'd say it were much more peppermint-like. Specifics aside, this gum packs a really great flavor. It starts off nicely strong, but not overly so, and fades to a smooth breath-freshening coolness. I had no idea about this, but the "Clor" in Clorets is a little play on words - Clorets contain Chlorophyll, which apparently has odor-absorbing qualities. Who knew? It's certainly not a factoid that is taught in fifth grade science in the Chlorophyll and You: Fun with Photosynthesis chapter.

Texture: The initial candy shell crunch of Clorets is one of the best I've encountered, and once the shell shards dissolve, the resulting wad is perfectly soft and pliable. I feel it's necessary to point out that Clorets is, surprisingly, a sugared gum. It doesn't feel like it, in either flavor or texture. It seems like kind of a waste... if I wanted to promote tooth decay I'd rather chew some Bubble Tape or Hubba Bubba and have some fun with it. Clorets, as good as it is, isn't really much fun. No bubbles to speak of - it's much too thin and sticky for that.

Presentation: It's old school. A cardstock paper box, minimal graphics, white text. Pretty boring. One plus is that the package is bilingual. It's good that our Spanish-speaking friends know that the FENILCETONURICS CONTIENE FENILALANINA.

Overall: Man. If I asked someone for a piece of gum and they pulled THIS out of their pocket? They'd be relentlessly made fun of for the rest of the day. Clorets is "old people gum," much like Freedent or Choward's Violet Gum. Who chews Clorets, anyway? Clorets is one of those gums that I've always known existed, but I've never really thought to pick up a pack. I'm always kind of surprised to see it's still around at all. When our buddy at offered to send us some gum of our choosing to review, I was immediately drawn to the Clorets, because I would have NEVER bought it myself. I'm glad they sent it over to us, though... it's a surprizingly good gum.

Rating: oooo (four gumballs)

Monday, July 19, 2010

Starbucks Sugar-Free Chewing Gum - Peppermint

Flavor: You'd think that Starbucks, a company known for selling a product that's notorious for causing nasty breath, would make a gum with an Altoids-like "pop" to it. Not the case with this gum. It's a very mellow mint, and the flavor fades really fast. The package proclaims a "cool burst of minty freshness," but there is no burst at all. It doesn't taste bad, just... blah.

Texture: This gum is really weird. First off, it looks like mints. It's like someone accidentally spilled some gum base pellets into the breath mint hopper, and some warehouse dude was like "Let's see what happens..." and this gum was born. It reminds me a lot of Razzles, except for grownups. It starts off really chalky and eventually does congeal, but the wad that's left is really waxy. There will be no cracking or popping with this gum - it's seriously like wax lips.

Presentation: Nice job by Starbucks here. This gum is presented neatly in a little slide-top metal tin, and all the little gum-mints are lined up inside. It's almost like they could have added a special graphic or something and put a marketing spin on it, "Collect all four!" or something.

Overall: The only time I can see anyone buying this gum is on a severe impulse or desperation, much like my co-worker did. She ate some Mexican food for lunch and stopped for a cup of coffee on her way back to work, and realized that her carnitas were funking up her breath, so she picked up the pack in Starbucks. I certainly don't see this as anyone's favorite gum, or even anyone making a special trip to Starbucks to pick it up. As pretty as it looks, it's not a great gum.

Rating: oo (two gumballs)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Orbit Mist Spearmint Spritzer

Flavor: It seems that every time I've purchased this gum to review it, I eat the entire pack before getting the chance to review it. I've reviewed a lot of spearmint gums already, but this one stands out as a unique flavor amid a sea of spearmint varieties. Slightly sweet and delightfully cold, this Orbit Mist takes spearmint to a newer, more refreshing place-- a sort of cleansing, wintery feeling, reserved usually for gums that use words like "Polar" and "Freeze." I've found that most spearmints offer more in the way of flavor than sensation, but this is a cool treat on a hot day, an ice cube at the bottom of your soda cup, and it still has those green spearmint properties we all know and love.

Texture: The packaging attributes the "hydrating sensation" to "micro-bursts," but I can't help but feel like the "wetness" of this gum has nothing to do with the little beads that crunch at the start of the chew. It's an enduring sensation, and does feel as though it's hydrating, like that ice cube melting on your tongue. The texture otherwise stays just firm enough for as long as you choose to chew.

Presentation: Orbit Mist is all about the slightly askew concentric circles, perhaps imitating ripples in water around a raindrop. The package is metallic blue, and when combined with the circles, portrays the ice cold hydration that is present throughout the whole chew.

Overall: I've bought at least half a dozen packs of this gum (at least) before saving one measly piece for a review. That fact alone almost invariably ensures a rating of five gumballs, and most definitely does in this case.

Rating: ooooo (five gumballs)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

eclipse Breeze Exotic Berry

Flavor: Alright, this has got to be a joke. This tastes like cough syrup. No, really - it tastes. Like. Cough Syrup. Not "reminiscent of cough syrup" or "cough-syrup undertones," this gum is full-on COUGH SYRUP. Nasty cough syrup, too. Like the kind of cough syrup that permeates your bitter taste buds and makes you shudder, the kind that you have to throw back like a tequila shot, lest your gag reflex overcome you. Apparently this gum contains "Cardamom," which according to Wikipedia, is a spice that does have medicinal properties. And you know... the longer I chew, the "spicier" it becomes, if you can call it that. It's kind of like the aftertaste of a clove cigarette. Gross.

Texture: Being a pellet gum, I expected a standard crunchy candy shell, but I was disappointed. There was no initial crunch, the chew of eclipse Breeze starts off like a stale piece of taffy. It does soften to a semi-chewable consistency, but really, but I don't really want to chew on a clove cigarette.

Presentation: The packaging is an appealing pink, with glittery-like graphics around the eclipse in the eclipse logo. (Have you ever noticed that before? It's new to me in the last few weeks - but now that I've seen it, it's all I see... much like the arrow in the FedEx logo.) The gum itself is flecked with red spots, leading me to believe it might be full of the crunchies I do so very much love in my gum, but alas, the flecks are misleading, as there are no crunchies in this gum. The gold bar on the bottom states "with Cardamom to Neutralize the Toughest Breath Odors." Inappropriate capitalization aside, I just don't get the "Neutralize" part. How does making your breath stink like nasty herbal cigarettes "neutralize" anything?

Overall: My reviews are rarely completely negative, but this gum is totally gross. I get a sense that the eclipse brand is faltering, and will soon go the way of care*free, disappearing into the gum void forever. This might be their attempt to revitalize the brand, I don't know, but the execution fails miserably here. In the Breath Neutralization War, Dentyne pure emerges as the clear victor.

Rating: o (one gumball)

Monday, July 12, 2010

International Spotlight: Watering Kiss Mint

Flavor: A colleague of mine was gracious enough to bring me back a few packs of gum from his recent trip to Japan. After I opened and inspected each pack, I knew that this would have to be my first review, mostly because I need to get rid of it, ASAP. To be blunt, this gum smells. A lot. I had to close it in my nightstand drawer because it was such a presence in the bedroom and actually inhibited sleep. But the smell itself roused many a memory in me, as it is reminiscent of the old discontinued Extra Original Bubble! I was really excited when I placed the familiar scent, hoping that this delicious, sweet, indescribably fruity gum was masquerading under a clever pseudonym. Alas, the flavor was a shock, as it wasn't Original Bubble, after all. Upon my second piece, however, once I was over my grief for my old friend O. Bubble, I decided it was a pretty delicious taste on its own. It's very very cold, and it is indeed quite wet, as wet, I'd say, as Orbit Mist. The bubble flavor does have hints of Extra Original Bubble, but is unique-- a bubblegum base, but much sweeter. The taste is a little overwhelming, but not as bad as the smell.

Texture: The texture is also similar to Extra. It's a good balance between soft and chewy, and doesn't stale or harden after at least 15 minutes of chewing (I'm not sure how it'll hold up beyond that, as I'm not planning on chewing it for much longer).

Presentation: Although the package resembles Stride or Orbit, I was delighted to discover a new gum structure-- a three-quarter size traditional stick of gum. I thought this might disintegrate into too small of a piece upon extended chewing, but it actually has a very substantial chew. The package itself is unimpressive, a sort of Photoshop-looking shape and a gray background.

Overall: Honestly, I don't think I'm going to finish this pack of gum. It's got a really intense smell and flavor, and I can't imagine having a conversation with someone while chewing it-- it's tantamount to a thirteen-year-old boy learning to wear cologne and stinking up the classroom for a few months before he understands "less is more." But it certainly was an experience that I don't regret, and the jogged memories of my special Extra Original Bubble grant Watering Kiss Mint a high-ish gumball rating.

Rating: ooo (three gumballs)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Orbit Peppermint

Flavor: I've been chewing and reviewing an awful lot of peppermint gums lately, but this peppermint is a little different from the rest. Peppermint flavor is hard to explain, so I don't know how much sense this is going to make, but the flavor of this gum is a little more "wintry" than the other peppermints. It's got the cool breath-freshening sensation, but a really nice, warm undertone. As usual, the Orbit flavor really lasts. I've been chewing about 20 minutes now, and I can still taste the initial flavor burst.

Texture: While the chew itself is alright in terms of malleability, it doesn't really lend itself to "playing with" in the mouth. If you try to spread it over your tongue, it gets thin and "webby" too easily. The gum also has a slight squeak, though nothing that would make me self-conscious in a business meeting.

Presentation: I keep meaning to pick up my Orbit in their new funky packaging (which deserves a post all to itself, I think,) but I always forget, or it's not around when I pick up a pack. This particular pack is standard Orbit "mint gum" packaging: Blue metallic inks and a centered brand logo. Nothing fancy, nothing special.

Overall: As far as peppermints go, this one's fantastic. I do have to take a point off for the weird texture, but that's really my only complaint. I can see this being a lot of people's favorite gum.
Rating: oooo (four gumballs)