I am a huge fan of beam style wiper blades. I've used them from Michelin, Rain-X, etc for the last few years on multiple vehicles. On my current Winter Beater, a 1997 4Runner, I have the Rain-X ones and they work very well, and the built in "rain x" coating does help the water bead. It's not as effective as actually rain-xing the windshield, but it's better than nothing.
The main issue for me isn't lift due to air resistance, but in colder weather the icing that I get on all of the older spring style or "covered" winter wipers. The beams do still ice up if you leave them out overnight in a snowstorm, but a good slap against the windshield or a quick brush off clears it and they don't ice up while you drive like the old style do. In regular driving at highway speed they are as effective if not slightly better than any other style windshield wiper I've ever had, including the ridiculous ones I had with square flaps on them in the early 90's that were on the 74 Trans Am when I bought it.
As far as rubber construction, I've never paid much attention. I buy whatever looks like it's a good value and call it good.
97 Thunderbird LX (The GT Bird)
PI Swapped NPI motor with some port work on the heads, PI cams, 80mm MAF, CAI that feeds from fenderwell. Jmod, 3.73:1 TL in Mark VIII carrier, Mark VIII aluminum LCAs, 93 Mark VIII driveshaft, PBR brakes (soon to be Cobras), 18x9 wheels, 255/40/ZR18 Tires, Front and Rear strut/shock bracing, GR-2 shocks, Eibach 1.5" springs, 1989 SC front and rear sway bars.