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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000433.txt from 1998/04

From: George Kidder <>
Date: Fri, 10 Apr 1998 10:06:03 -0400

Four comments:

1) (Testimonial)I have been using the commercial (expensive) stuff since I
returned to playing a few years ago after a 40-year layoff. I don't have
dentures, but do have a ragged set of lower teeth, and they used to give me
hell playing for any length of time. Now I may have other endurance
problems, but a cut lower lip isn't one of them. So its not just folks with
metal in their mouth who can benefit from this stuff.

2) (Economics) If I remember right, the strip of "Lip Ease" I bought at the
local music store (they had to order it for me) cost something like $7.00
for what might have been a 2" by 36" piece. Figure 9.7 cents per square
inch or something like that. Parafilm M, Scott says, can be had for ca. 3
cents per square inch from VWR. Not a huge markup when you consider that
the Lip Ease has instructions and a nice plastic bag to keep it in. In
two-plus years I haven't used more than maybe a quarter of my strip.
Granted, it is more expensive than Parafilm per acre, but how long are YOU
going to last. (By my calculations, the VWR roll would last me 56 years!)
Others may find they use it up faster than I do, but unless you are going to
buy a supply and divide it among a large number of people, you might do
better to get the commercial product.

3) (Test) I agree with Cindy - the two products are apparently identical.
I'm wearing a Parafilm one now, and can't feel any difference.

4) (Discount source) Those of you in educational instutions might consider
wandering over to the Biology area and asking around. We don't bite (at
least not people) and you could probably bum enough to last a long time.

George Kidder

>In a message dated 4/6/98, Cindy wrote:
><<I have a student with braces. There is a product on the market that is
>soft plastic (similar to football or boxing mouthpieces, but thinner)
>which conforms to your teeth. <Snip>
>Out of curiosity, I purchased this material and discovered that it is
>"Parafilm." It is a stretchable film used by scientists to cover test tubes
>and the like. Parafilm is thicker than plastic wrap but works on the same
>principle. It feels a little odd when you use it to cushion your teeth but
>that's what it takes to keep playing clarinet, so be it. When I bought
>Parafilm as a clarinetist's aid, it was outrageously priced. If you could
>it in a lab supply catalog or in a pharmacy, I suspect it would be much

And Scott replied:

Fisher Scientific listsa 4"x125' roll of Parafilm M for $20.0; VWR
Scientific sells the same thing for $14.89 (of course, large institutions
like us get a discount on this!). For those of you who are not familiar
with parafilm, it isn't really like plastic wrap: it is a stretchy waxy
sheet (about the thickness of regular wax paper) that can be stretched and

- -Scott

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