Trident Vitality Balance

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Flavor: This is a nice, mellow citrus.  While it has a bit of a tang, there’s no real power behind the flavor, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.  I’ve never really been able to pick out a “pomegranate” flavor in anything other than a straight-up pomegranate, but the tangerine comes through really nicely here.
Texture: This is softer than a standard pellet in terms of initial crunch, and it remains soft throughout the chew.  (We’ve seen this in other Trident Vitality varieties.)  It’s not terrible, though, and some chewers might prefer it.
Presentation: We’ve discussed the Vitality package design before– it looks nice but lacks real purpose.  I still find the “box” format annoying and would prefer the standard sleeve.
Overall:  According to the Nutrition Information, one piece of this gum contains 10% of your daily Vitamin C.  That’s nothing to sneeze at, especially if you’re a gum-addict like me.  I could easily chew through half a pack in an afternoon, and there’s half my RDV right there.  It’s a nice gum, but I can’t get past the softness.  I do have to give Trident credit for staying true to the formula with each new addition to the Vitality line (unlike other brands… I’m lookin’ at YOU, Wrigley’s 5). 
Rating: oooo (four gumballs)
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Trident Vitality Zen

Flavor: I was delightfully surprised when I bit into my first Trident Vitality Zen pellet to taste a coconut-mint-like flavor. Although I can see where the vanilla comes from (coconut and vanilla are close cousins in flavor, let’s be honest), I feel it falls more under the coconut umbrella, but not in an overwhelming way as coconut flavors often are presented. It’s a mellow coconut rounded out by a “smooth mint” as they skillfully call it, and it lasts a decent amount of time, twenty minutes or so. It’s not a marathon chew, but it’s a nice refreshing treat after a meal. I have to say I can’t seem to detect the “green tea” that’s advertised on the pack, and think it’s just another one of those healthy-sounding gimmicks they tack onto the names of gums to make them more marketable.
Texture: As with the other Vitality flavors, it’s on the softer side, but doesn’t disintegrate or become unpleasantly smooshy after a long chew.
Presentation: The Vitality packs are simple and elegant, and this one follows suit. I like the choice of lavender for the font– it complements the cream in the vanilla leaves and the silver background.
Overall: It’s not too bad. I can’t say that I’m on the path to achieving Nirvana with each piece of Vitality Zen that I chew, but I can say it enlightened my taste buds a little.
Rating: oooo (four gumballs )

Trident Vitality Rejuve

Flavor : So this gum is called “Rejuve,” with the subtext, “A rejuvenating blend of luscious mint and white tea.” Uh. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that this is…spearmint. And I think subliminally, that’s what they’re telling you with the packaging– it’s the green package in the Vitality trio (alongside blue and orange). It’s a really good spearmint, actually, sweet and long-lasting. The taste reminds me a lot of those gelly spearmint candies that are covered in sugar, which my mom used to buy a lot when I was a kid. I loved those things, but I haven’t found the urge to buy those sugarbombs myself in my adult life, so it’s nice to have this throwback to an old classic, without rotting my teeth. That said, I don’t see anything “luscious” about the flavor, nor do I detect any semblance of white tea. At all.

Texture : The crunch at the beginning is really pleasant, and contributes to that memory of the crunchy sugar coating on the aforementioned spearmint leaf candies. It might be a little soft for some, but I think the consistency is just firm enough. Again, I wouldn’t describe it as “luscious.” The soft center varies from piece to piece, I find, some pieces pumped with a firm gel, others with almost no variation in texture at all.

Presentation : They’re going for sophisticated, healthy. “Rejuve,” “Awaken,” and “Vigorate” sounds like the names of the Tazo Teas they sell at Starbucks, but there’s nothing tea-like about any of these gums. It’s just gum–good gum, don’t get me wrong, but just… gum. The marketing here is just misleading.

Overall : I’d buy this again, but not for the reasons they want me to buy it. I offered it to folks in the office, and they didn’t seem to care about the added benefits, whether or not it wakes you up or spikes your daily vitamin intake. For the most part, when co-workers saw it on my desk, they picked up the package and just asked one question– “Is it any good?” Oh yeah, it’s pretty good. So good, in fact, that I took it out of the free gum and candy basket on my desk.

Rating: oooo (four gumballs )

Trident Vitality Vigorate

Flavor : The “burst of citrus and strawberry with vitamin C” here tastes an awful lot like the rainbow to me. The flavor at first is reminiscent of orange Skittles, in a good way, but is as fleeting as the goo inside the pellet. There is a nice cooling sensation that lasts throughout the whole chew, and the flavor is pleasant enough for a while, but it’s nothing that Orbit Citrusmint hasn’t done before (and better).

Texture : The first bite is a lot like a Skittle texture-wise as well, one that’s been sitting out in the sun for a few minutes and is nice and soft inside. But after the crunch is gone, it’s all mush. It falls apart as you chew, which to me is one of the worst qualities in a gum. Not everyone wants a firm gum, and it’s refreshing to see variety in textures that appeal to different preferences. “Crumbly,” however, is not a characteristic of gum at all. In fact, it’s the opposite of what a gum should be.

Presentation : Shannon discussed the misleading health claims that Trident is employing with this new line of gum in her review of Trident Vitality Awaken. Sure, there are maybe some traces of vitamin C here, but you shouldn’t be supplementing a good old fashioned orange with this a pack of Vigorate. I secretly expected a little burst of energy when I chewed my first piece, but it did little to quell the three o’clock work doldrums. The pack is clean and well designed, and I do actually like the aesthetic of the flap that clicks when you close it, even if it doesn’t actually do anything.

Overall : If you’re in the market for a mid-afternoon boost of vitamin C to get you through the day, don’t bother with Vitality. Have an orange, some tomato salad, or a handful of strawberries (dipped in chocolate if you’re feeling particularly droopy). If you’re looking for a sweet post-meal treat to replace that bag of Skittles you’ve been eyeing in the vending machine since breakfast, then go ahead and stash a pack in your desk drawer. It’s ok.

Rating : ooo (three gumballs )

Trident Vitality Awaken

Taste: The box says “A peppy peppermint with a dash of ginseng,” and it’s a peppy peppermint, indeed. You get the initial blast of freshness you do with most pellet gums, especially those with a liquid center, and when the candy shell dissolves you’re left with a soft mint that’s easy on the taste buds and sinuses.

Texture: Sub-par. It starts off nice, with a tiny burst of goo in the middle, and then just goes downhill. It gets way too soft, way too fast. I suppose some might like this kind of softness, but it’s really stringy and sticky. There’ll be no cracking, snapping or popping with this gum.

Presentation: I don’t know what’s going on here. It’s your average pellet pack, placed inside a fancy-looking box. Why? It seems like overkill. It’s also kind of annoying. Traditionally, pellet packs are in cardboard sleeves, so you can push the pack out from one end so that it pops out the other. With this box, it’s only open on one end, so there’s nowhere to push the pellet pack out from. You have to either shake it, or get a little fingernail’s grip on the pack to pull it out. The whole thing seems really unnecessary, and kinda pretentious to me. The graphics themselves are nice, a metallic silver with a simple dew-speckled peppermint leaf, but I think it would have been just as effective on your standard pellet pack sleeve. (ETA: I found an article that said one of the purposes of the box was so that the pellet pack wouldn’t fall out. Has anyone ever had an issue with pellet packs falling out of their sleeves? I haven’t… and we all know how much gum I chew.)

Overall: Move over Extra Dessert Delights, Trident Vitality has caught the attention of the Gum World. Everyone’s talking about it. However, in the opinion of this Gum Girl, the “Latest and Greatest” falls short. In the interest of science, I popped a piece of “Awaken” on this fine Monday morning as I got into the car to drive to work, before drinking my coffee. I arrived at my job still as tired and dragging as I would any other Monday morning. It’s a Gum Gimmick, pure and simple. Much like Stride Shift, and 5 React, there’s really nothing special about Trident Vitality. They just like to make you think there is.

Rating: oo (two gumballs)

mentos Pure Fresh Fresh Mint

This review was sponsored by our friends at mentos.

Flavor : mentos Pure Fresh Fresh Mint reminds me a lot of Extra Polar Ice in its minty simplicity, offering a cold burst of freshness without any frills. The packaging suggests otherwise, however, as it indicates that I will detect green tea extract somewhere in there. Alas, much like Trident Vitality Rejuve’s failed promise of white tea, you’ll be hard pressed to taste anything tea-like here. That said, I like to imagine that I’m benefiting from some of the antioxidants in the green tea extract in this gum, so it doesn’t bother me too much that there’s nothing very unique about the flavor.

Texture : Although it doesn’t say it directly, I was led to believe by the illustration on the package that there would be some kind of liquid center in each pellet. I didn’t experience that at all, so I cut a piece in half and took a look to see what was going on in there. There is indeed something different happening in the center of this gum, but if you’re looking for a juicy center, look elsewhere. Otherwise, this is a good chew, consistent, a bit on the soft side, but quite enjoyable.

Presentation : The hard plastic pack does a good job of keeping the pieces contained while rattling around in a purse, which is a hard characteristic to find in packaging these days. I’m not sure if it was intentional that the name of this gum is redundant– the other variety of Pure is called “Pure Fresh Wintergreen.” This one is called “Pure Fresh Fresh Mint.” Why the double fresh? Another adjective might have worked better, “Cool mint,” maybe.

Overall : The Pure line is delightful, when you get past all the aforementioned nerdy packaging critiques. Recently a reader asked what gum we recommended to be the best straight up breath-freshening gum. I’m going to go ahead and add this one to the list, a simple, cool burst of fresh fresh freshness.

Rating : oooo (four gumballs)

Stride Spark Kinetic Mint

Flavor: The first few times I chewed Stride Spark Kinetic Mint I was really impressed, but the more pieces I chomp upon, the scarier this gum becomes. Not only is the gum infused with vitamins, it also seems to be infused with a blend of spices, or chemicals, or some other weird substance that causes the mint to have a “peppery” feel to it. It’s reminiscent of the “electric” sensation I felt with Wrigley’s 5 Prism. I find that if I leave the gum in one place for too long, I start to feel a weird tingling sensation that quickly turns to burning. Maybe that’s the “spark” that Stride is going for with this, but it’s really quite unsettling. That being said, it’s an adequate mint that does freshen the breath.

Texture: Aside from the aforementioned burning sensation, the texture of this gum is really fantastic. No complaints from first chew to wad disposal, it’s pliable and has some meatiness to it.

Presentation: Cute, I suppose. Nothing about the packaging really calls out to me. It’s a standard Stride wallet pack featuring the recognizable “S” logo on a semi-shiny silver background with some “electric” graphics. Seems like a wasted opportunity to do something really cool, graphically.

Overall: The package claims that “Vitamins B6 and B12 help release energy in the body.” That’s a nice enough claim, and all… but really? What does that even mean? There’s not even any indication on the pack how much of these vitamins the gum contains. With the rush of health-infusion gums hitting the market as of late, I really think that these manufacturers need to go above and beyond to stand out from the rest of the pack. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s a fun chew and I certainly don’t hate it, but after the whole “Shift” episode, they really needed to step out of the gate with something phenomenal, and this isn’t it. At least it’s not as bad as Trident Vitality.

Rating: ooo (three gumballs)

So Much Gum, So Little Time!

Oh. Em. Gee. You guys. Check out our queue. It’s like we hit the Gum Lottery or something. Our friends at vitamingum and mentos recently sent us over some samples, and we finally have been able to get our hands on the new Stride Spark flavors (Kinetic Mint and Kinetic Fruit), the other two Trident Vitality flavors (Rejuve and Vigorate) and Orbit Strawberry Remix (which I am chewing right now… [Sneak Preview: Fantastic Flavor]). All this, and we still have not yet been able to get our hands on the new 5 Vortex that everyone is talking about! Rest assured, we will find it, and review it along with all these other exciting gumz… AND all the oldies-but-goodies that you awesome fans are filling up our inbox requesting.
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