Category Archives: Creams & Soaps

Reviews of shaving creams and soaps.

Review: Taylor of Old Bond Street – Lavender Shaving Cream

Taylor of Old Bond Street - Lavender Shaving Cream

Taylor of Old Bond Street – Lavender Shaving Cream

I have been consistently pleased with Taylor of Old Bond Street’s products.  And I was super excited when my last shipment of shaving creams arrived in the mail because I have lately been really getting into the lavender scent and today is the day I got to finally try Taylor of Old Bond Street’s Lavender Shaving Cream.

In the bowl this cream was a little on the dry side, closer to a croap than a cream.  For those who don’t know a “croap” is a cream that has a denser, dryer consistency, that seems more like a solid soap than a cream, however yields to pressure.

The scent is wonderful.  Taylor of Old Bond Street describes their take on lavender:  “A natural lavender interpretation with hints of orange, floral notes and cedarwood.”  I would say that the extra notes of orange, floral, and cedarwood are very light notes, as the lavender scent in general jumps out at you.

However I have learned from the scent of their grapefruit shaving cream, that if they just put the single note of lavender in there, the scent would be very one-dimensional and probably off-putting in the long run.  Having these extra notes in there on a very subtle level is what really rounds out the scent and provides a faint yet complex depth to the overall fragrance of this cream.  If you’re a fan of lavender, you will love this take on it.  It’s pretty strong out of the tub.  It’s light yet present while you’re whipping up your lather and is just wonderful while shaving.  Not too strong, not too light.

Personally I found the lather just slightly lacking oomph.  Having shaved many times with their avocado and Jermyn Street creams, I felt the lather whipped up a little on the light side.  It was cushiony and slick, but slightly less so as I went along from pass to pass.  I can tell you one thing though, I had a 100% nick free shave.  Smooth as silk and not a single drop of blood, honest.  I may have had not enough cream in the mix and will keep trying.  If I get a better result I will come back and update you all.

  • Scent – 4
  • Lather Performance – 4
  • Lather Life – 3.5
  • Overall – 4

Hard to complain with such an amazing shave, but I thought the lather would be a little richer than what I was able to procure.  The scent and the end result of the shave were fantastic tho, and so I can still recommend this stuff, especially if you like lavender.

Review: Queen Charlotte Soaps – Green Irish Tweed Type Shaving Cream

Queen Charlotte Soaps - Green Irish Tweed Type Shaving Cream

Queen Charlotte Soaps – Green Irish Tweed Type Shaving Cream

It’s good to be back!  I’ve had a few rough weeks, that started with packing up for a move, then moving, then unpacking and finally getting so sick that I lost my sense of taste and smell for a week.  Well folks, I am back, ready to shave, and better yet, ready to write about it!

While I was sick, I decided to sell some of my shave den supplies that I don’t use much, and replace them with things I have not yet tried.  I recently picked up a bundle of barely used shaving creams that are new to me, and they arrived today.  First up?  Green Irish Tweed Type Shaving Cream by Queen Charlotte Soaps.

Let’s talk scent.  The scent is light and fresh.  Citrusy up top, floral in the middle, over a mysore sandalwood base.  I know that it’s hard to imagine the scent.  Those of you who know Creed’s Irish Tweed scent will know what I am talking about.  I would also hazard to say it smells a bit like Irish Spring soap.  Maybe a bit warmer to the nose.  It’s not heavily scented.  You have to go really close to the soap to smell it out of the tin, and even when lathering and shaving it’s still a light-handed approach to a scent.  Personally it’s not my favorite scent.  But I wanted to give it a try.  That said, it’s not a powerful scent, and is quite clean and provided a nice little spark to my morning.

As for the lather, it was great!  First off, the shaving cream made by Queen Charlotte Soaps is frequently described as a “croap”, somewhere in between a cream and a soap.  It’s hard but softens to pressure.  And it didn’t take much to whip up a this tallow cream into a nice thick yogurty lather.  Some cream lathers I have tried recently have disappointed me in that the lather whips up a little light and foamy.  Not QCS.  This lather, like I said is nice and thick.  It provided a nice cushion and plenty of slickness for my razor.  The lather also rinsed clean, leaving just a slight hint of the sandalwood base for me to smell after the shave.  And on top of that, it did that thing that I love: it got better and better with each pass.

  • Scent – 3
  • Lather Performance – 4
  • Lather Life – 4.5
  • Overall – 3.5

I gave this cream a 3.5 rating only because the scent is not for me.  Otherwise, it was a really great shave.

Oh and Queen Charlotte Soaps gets a big hi-five for ingredients too.  Almost entirely natural, and with great stuff for your face, especially aloe vera and vitamin E.  If you have not tried any of their soaps or creams, do yourself a favor and give them a shot.  They have a wide array of fragrances and their creams and soaps perform exceptionally well.  I even love their shampoo bars!

Review: Taconic Bay Rum Shave Cream

Taconic Bay Rum Shave Cream

Taconic Bay Rum Shave Cream

Here’s what I have come to love about the “bay rum” scent.  It is a vehicle for a brand to express itself.  Unlike more specific scents, like sandalwood, orange, or rose, “bay rum” is completely open to interpretation, and as such the “bay rum” scent differs from one brand to another.  The classics are the classics and probably stick closer to what would be considered the classic barbershop scent.  And then there are newcomers to the shaving software game, who usually produce a completely unique scent.

Let me also mention that lately I have been swooning over tallow-based soaps and creams, and finding non-tallow soaps to be a little lackluster, even when they come from the biggest names in classic shaving soaps and creams.  I mention this because today’s review is of a non-tallow bay-rum-scented cream that I am blown away by:  Taconic Bay Rum Shave Cream.

Let’s talk scent.  This bay rum is unique from all other bay rums I have tried, and I have tried a lot. Scent is a very subjective element to judge.  You might love the scent of X soap, and hate the scent of Y cream.  And the next guy will feel exactly the opposite.  So when I say that this is one of the best takes on bay rum I have ever sampled, you may feel differently.  You’d be wrong, but … well no you wouldn’t be wrong, but I’d ask you to step outside so we could settle the matter like gentlemen.

I can’t seem to find a website for Taconic, so I haven’t found any official description of the scent.  I will give it my best shot though:  On top, it is hard to tell if there is a citrus scent, but if there is I would guess its some variation on orange.  In the middle it has a relatively strong cinnamon note with a slight bay note.  And beneath that would be hard to tell, but I believe there is a sweet note holding down the fort, possibly vanilla.  Overall, it’s probably more of a sweet-cinnamon scent than the classic “bay rum” scent, but personally, I friggin love the smell of this cream.  It actually reminds me somewhat of Juicy Fruit gum.  It smells great in the tub, It smells great in the mug when being lathered, and it smells great while lathered on my face.  It’s simply awesome.  If anything it could be a touch stronger.

Before I go into the lather, let’s talk ingredients.  Taconic’s Bay Rum Shave Cream specializes in using “certified organic” ingredients when they can.  It is a non-tallow soap, so vegetarians will be happy as well.  There are two very interesting ingredients, honey and spiced Jamaican rum.  Yes!  This captain is very pleased.  Overall, the ingredients are mostly natural, certified organic, and great for your face.

Alright lather junkies.  The lather from this non-tallow cream is easily on par, if not better than, many tallow-based soaps I have tried.  I have used this cream 5 days in a row, and I have gotten amazing lathers every single time.  Is it the honey?  Or maybe the rum?  Stearic acid is the top ingredient, and it’s great for lather.  It makes a very creamy lather, and I suspect it’s a big part of the success of this cream.

The lather builds up spectacularly from a small dollop of cream.  It gets better with each pass as well, thickening more and more as you go along.  It’s goes on thick and creamy, providing excellent cushion and slickness, but rinsing cleanly.  Seriously, this lather is amazing.  As always, your mileage may vary, but for me this ranks with the best latherers.  I have had an awesomely smooth shave each time.  If you try this cream and find the lather a little lacking, I would suggest adding either a little more cream, or whipping it a little longer in a mug.  I have not tried face-lathering this cream, but in the future I will try it out.  For now, I have excellent results in the mug.

The only complaint I have about this product is the tub it comes in.  I like to swirl my brush in the tub, and to me this tub is a little on the small side.  A slightly wider tub would allow some play for my brush.  Yup, thats about my only complaint.

While I have yet to try a lot of more well known creams, I would have to say that Taconic’s Bay Rum Shave Cream is my favorite cream at the moment.  I really love this stuff.

  • Scent – 4.5
  • Lather Performance – 5
  • Lather Life – 5
  • Overall – 5

The scent could be a touch stronger, but is still awesome.  And the lather is exceptional for a non-tallow formula.  I really love this stuff, and it’s going to be hard to reach for a different cream to shave with, so I can’t imagine giving it anything less than an overall 5/5.  And if anyone out there knows if this company has a website, leave me a reply below, I would love to check it out.  Thanks!

Review: Truefitt & Hill – Trafalgar Shaving Cream

Truefitt & Hill - Trafalgar Shaving Cream

Truefitt & Hill – Trafalgar Shaving Cream

As I started getting into traditional wetshaving, I initially ordered a lot of samplers of creams, soaps, and aftershaves.  It’s the move that spawned the very website you are reading right now.  Initially I was really into bay rums, and things scented with pretty obvious ingredients like Lime, or orange, or straight up sandalwood.  But these samplers from Truefitt & Hill I just wasn’t sure about.  They smelled musky to me.  Maybe a little old man smelling, maybe a little bit like a Macy’s perfume counter.  I used to hate the perfume counter but I find that in my journey trying out all these scents, I have grown.  A lot.

And that brings us to today.  I finally reached over and picked up the little sample of Truefitt & Hill’s Trafalgar Shaving Cream.

Trafalgar is one of Truefitt & Hill’s signature scents.  Perhaps their most signature scent.  At first sniff, it smells clean yet complex.  It is not a simple scent, and I think that is what threw me a little when i first picked it up.  If you sniff around Truefitt & Hill’s website, you will find the exact description of the scent:  “top notes of Cedar and Sandalwood complemented by subtle hints of Jasmine and Spice”.  While it may be tough to make out what that smells like in your mind, I can tell you that the combination really is wonderful.  Its a clean (cedar), slightly sweet (jasmine) but very distinguished scent.  It’s manly, but playful.  It yells out “gentleman”.

On the shave end, it’s a glycerin soap.  I have lately been going deeper and deeper down the tallow road, thouroughly enjoying the pleasures of the thick and rich qualities that tallow brings to a shaving cream/soap.

I started with a dollop of cream that was slightly smaller than an almond.  It whipped up into an amazing amount of lather, and I hardly needed much water to make it explode.  It’s pointless to say how many passes this lather could have been used for, because it really just would have kept going and going and going.  The lather was rich and creamy, but I found that I am spoiled by tallow-based soaps and creams, because I found the lather wasn’t as slick and cushioning as other lathers I have tried.  It does last though, as each pass got better than the last, with a little whipping with my brush before each application.  I found that by the time I got to the last part of each pass, the lather was starting to fade on my face.  Not bad, but not as good as I have had with other soaps.

Of course, I sit here with a super smooth face.  I had a nick-free shave, and my skin feels smooth and moisturized.  Glycerin is great stuff for your skin, and as I mentioned, this cream is glycerin-based.

Overall, while it didn’t quite measure up to some tallow-based soaps and creams, the scent carries this glycerin-based cream to a height far above other glycerin-based soaps and creams.  And if the scent doesn’t do it, the brand sure should.  Truefitt & Hill is the world’s oldest barbershop, and these scents have been around for a long long time, and are even used by royalty (if that matters to you).  Whether or not it does doesn’t matter.  What does matter is that this is a time tested brand, a time tested scent, and there are many many people out there that love it.  I personally think you owe it to your face to try Truefitt & Hill’s Trafalgar Shaving Cream.

  • Scent – 4.5
  • Lather Performance – 4
  • Lather Life – 4
  • Overall – 4

Review: Geo F Trumper – GFT Shaving Cream

Geo F Trumper - GFT Shaving Cream

Geo F Trumper – GFT Shaving Cream

So what does a GFT smell like?  That’s what I was about to find out.  My supply of samples is starting to thin a bit, so today I grabbed one that isn’t a lime or orange or rose or any simple scent: Geo F Trumper’s GFT Shaving Cream.

While the scent isn’t a simple one-note song, it isn’t overly complex either.  Now, being a person who hasn’t always fancied the smell of musk, I had a little trepidation reaching for GFT because musk is a note in it’s scent.  It starts off with top notes of mandarin and lemon.  In the middle-range are “woody notes of cypress and bittersweet tarragon.  And the base notes are composed of cedar and moss with a “musk-like base”.  And yes, that musky base note is there.

Overall the scent is bright and fresh with a strong bottom.  It’s citrusy, but with the woody and musk-like notes, it’s very manly.  It’s not a sweet citrusy scent, but a smart citrusy scent.  It’s similar to Taylor of Old Bond Street’s Jermyn Street scent, but again, with some woodier notes involved.  This scent has a little too much of the woody/musky thing going on for my taste, but fans of that scent profile will really love this scent, I’m sure.

Also I should say that for a shaving cream, the scent has some staying power.  It actually still is lingering here after the application of my aftershave.

The lather is really good.  A little does go a long way.  I used a large pea-sized dollop of cream, and I knew almost immediately I should have used a small pea-sized dollop.  There was enough lather for 6+ passes, and I only needed three.

I did a three-pass shave, and the lather started off a little on the weak side, but got better and better.  The third pass had the best lather, thick and yogurt-like, pretty much exactly what I am looking for from a lather.  I just wish I had that lather for all three passes.  It could be because I used too much cream to start with.  This stuff also does not need much water to lather up good.

It also does not thin out at all while you’re shaving.  It did just a little during the first pass but the lather did get better and better.

Overall I really did enjoy the shave I got from GFT.  The scent is not my favorite, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a great scent.  Look up the reviews on Amazon.com, and you’ll see there are many people out there that really love it.  Here’s my ratings:

  • Scent – 3.5
  • Lather Performance – 4
  • Lather Life – 4.5
  • Overall – 4

 

Review: Mike’s Natural Soaps – Rose & Cedarwood Shaving Soap

Mike's Natural Soaps - Rose & Cedarwood Shaving Soap

Mike’s Natural Soaps – Rose & Cedarwood Shaving Soap

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there who are probably not reading this.  I was going to just shave with whatever I felt was next in my rotation of creams and soaps and then I realized, “Hey, I’m pretty sure I got a rose sample somewhere, maybe I should review it”… And here we are.

Today, in honor of my mother Eleanor, who’s recipe for Pink Potato Salad is listed in the vaults at Food Network, I shaved with a rose-scented soap, a sample that I have had lying around for a while now.  Today I bring you a review of Mike’s Natural Soaps – Rose & Cedarwood Shaving Soap.

You hear a lot of guys going nuts about tallow.  I get it now.  Yes I am not new to tallow soaps and I have had the privilege of trying out a wide swath of soaps and creams.  It really does seem like every time i try a tallow soap I go nuts over the lather.  And conversely, every time I try a non-tallow soap I am left feeling ‘ok’ about it.

Today I went nuts.  Mike’s Rose is just an amazing soap.  The scent is unique thanks to the cedarwood.  Now from what I understand, rose essential oil is extremely expensive, due to needing so many rose petals per drop of oil.  So many soapmakers use fragrance oil for rose.  This is one of them.  I honestly wouldn’t have known if Mike didn’t say it on his website, but regardless.  The rose scent is wonderful.  It is the driving force of this shaving soap.  But then there is the cedarwood, which adds a sharp, fresh note to the fragrance.  It’s truly something you have to just smell to understand.  Overall the scent is wonderful and bright, while retaining it’s floral presentation.  Really nice scent that is present but not overbearing.

The lather is simply perfect.  I like a nice thick lather, with cushion and slickness, that lasts.  The lather that I got from this soap could easily be the bar that I measure all other soaps up to.  As I mentioned before it’s a tallow soap, that also is loaded with other amazing ingredients like avocado oil, kokum and shea butters, and lanolin, the magical wax from sheep that makes Mitchell’s Wool Fat so extraordinarily slick.

The lather was ultra-thick and creamy, with enough to last 5 passes.  Each pass got better and better, too.  And it stayed thick on my face while I was going through each pass – I never needed a touchup.  And it was amazingly slick, allowing the blade to glide right across my skin and through each whisker.  I could still feel that slickness as I rinsed between passes.  If I had any complaints it might be that the lather got a little bit dry by the third pass, maybe too thick.  But then a few drops of water and a re-whip will bring it right back to where it was.  Still a fantastic lather… Mike’s mom should be proud.

My hardware was pretty usual for me, but the software was tailor-made for mother’s day:

And here are my ratings for the shave:

  • Scent – 4.5
  • Lather Performance – 5
  • Lather Life – 4.5
  • Overall – 4.5

Review: Truefitt & Hill – West Indian Lime Shaving Cream

Truefitt & Hill - West Indian Limes Shaving Cream

Truefitt & Hill – West Indian Limes Shaving Cream

As some of you may know, I have had samplers of several of Truefitt & Hill creams sitting around for a while, waiting for me to get over the hesitation I have of trying them out.  It’s partly because I am not sure about the scent when I sniff the sampler, and partially because of the fact that so many people love this company’s products, that I feel too small to be a reviewer.

But I am over it.  And today, I shaved with Truefitt & Hill West Indian Lime Shaving Cream.  And it was awesome.

Let’s start with the lather performance.  I have been spoiled a bit lately by tallow soaps and they have set a very high bar for me when it comes to slickness and cushion.  T&H’s West Indian Lime Shaving Cream is not a tallow-based cream, so as such it’s not quite what one would find in a tallow counterpart.  But, Truefitt & Hill does not disappoint.

The lather was very thick for a cream.  I took the time to whip it up really good, and got a lot of cusion and some decent slickness.  It went on thick on my beard, and allowed the razor to do exactly what it needed to do.

As for the lather life, I feel it felt just slightly short.  While in the mug, the lather got better and better with each pass, with easily enough lather for 5 or 6 passes.  However, I found the lather was starting to die on my face while I was performing each pass.  So If I started shaving my neck, by the time I got to my moustache, I found the lather was thinning and needed a little touchup.

As for the scent, it is delicious limes.  Now looking at Truefitt & Hill’s description, you will find it contains notes of lemon, lime, and other citrus scents.  I totally get that.  Before I read that I did pick up a slight hint of orange, and felt overall that it was a citrus scent that was a little bit of a darker lime.  Now lime, as everyone knows, is a zingy citrus scent.  Very acidic, sharp, and usually lasts a very short time.  I think this is a brilliant take on the lime scent.  It’s rounded down a little with the other citrus scents, and I wouldn’t doubt that there are other deeper fragrance notes buried underneath the top citrus notes to draw out the scent a little more.  I can’t say it’s my favorite lime scented product, but I can say it’s a very unique and good one.

I shaved with my usual setup:  Weber DLC with a brand new Personna Medical Prep razor blade.  I finished with Thayer’s Rose Witch Hazel, and Geo F Trumper’s Extract of Limes Skin Food.  BBS (baby-butt smooth) shave with only one weeper from a careless move on my neck 😉

So for Truefitt & Hill’s West Indian Limes Shaving Cream:

  • Scent – 4
  • Lather Performance – 4
  • Lather Life – 4.5
  • Overall – 4

Review: Tabac Shaving Soap

Tabac Shaving Soap

Tabac Shaving Soap

(Please be sure to check the update to this review below..)

I’m going into this review a little nervous.  And I have been nervous about many of my reviews, because how can I, a humble wetshaver for less than a year, take myself seriously enough to sit in judgement of many of these products, some of them in production for over a hundred years, and some of them loved by maybe millions of men.  Tabac is one of these.  From my point of view, it holds a legendary status amongst those men out there who take a brush to soap when they shave.  And it seems to be even more popular as an aftershave/cologne.

So I got a sample of it probably a month ago from Garry’s Sample Shop, and in a little drawer it sat, all this time, waiting for me to get over my nerves about reviewing it.  I even smelled it a few times and that Macy’s-cologne-counter-hating guy in me was like “yeah it smells like old man stuff”.  That didn’t help the nerves.  So today, having been away from the diaries for a while, I decided that it was finally time to shave with Tabac.  Man am I glad I did.

The scent is very complex.  The actual list of notes, according to basenotes, are: pepper, petitgrain, citrus, neroli, lavender, camomile, geranium, oak moss, carnation, sandalwood, vetiver, moschus, and ambergris.  Got that?  I know exactly what you’re thinking.  That doesn’t help at all.  I know.  Here’s the way I would personally describe it.  On top, I feel a very clean, slightly musky citrus scent.  Beneath that scent is a floral background.  At the back end of the scent, if you pay attention, you can definitely pick up the sandalwood feel.  Overall it’s a very pleasant scent for the morning when you are shaving.  It starts complex and stays complex.  It’s not too citrusy, not too floral, and not too woodsy, but it is all three of these things, and more.  As pleasant as it is, it’s just not personally my thing.  At least not now… 

This stuff lathers up so thick and creamy.  I often hear people say that you are looking for a yogurt-like consistency with a lather.  Of all the products I have tried, this was the most yogurt-like.  I found it to be maybe just a bit too thick though.  It began to feel a little tacky on my face.  But it does provide great cushion and was moderately slick.  All in all, it was a great performer, but maybe too much, if that makes any sense?

As far as the life of the lather, it was perfectly suitable to last at least 6 passes.  And on my face, I never had to touch up a spot.  Every soap needs to check out Tabac and then they will understand how long a lather *should* last.

Overall I had a fantastic shave.  Baby Butt Smooth.  My skin feels fantastic.  The lather had a life expectancy I wish all shave creams had.  The scent was ok.  Clean, fresh, floral, but maybe just not my personal cup of tea.  Is this good stuff?  You bet your ass it is.  The price is on par with other high-end soaps as well, so it’s not a bank breaker.  It’s worth at least a sample try, and I am glad I did.

I really should have started doing this a while ago, but I will start giving actual ratings to soaps.  I know there are others doing this already… Mantic, Greg, and a host of others.  Well, that doesn’t mean I can’t right?  I mean it’s just one more review and rating.  I’m new to wetshaving, and many of these products, and I suspect you are too.  In the end I hope these reviews will be helpful to you.  Here’s the criteria I will rate, from 1.0 to 5.0:

1) Scent – How much do I like the scent.  This will also include scent strength…
2) Lather Performance – This will incorporate two ratings: one for cushion, and one for slickness, as I have found that they can be exclusive of eachother.
3) Lather Life – Does this stuff fade into weak bubbles quickly or does it get thicker and better with each pass?
4) Overall rating – My general feeling after the shave.

So for Tabac Shaving Soap:

  • Scent – 3.5
  • Lather Performance – 4.5
  • Lather Life – 5
  • Overall – 4

I will try to get these ratings into my past reviews, as long as I can honestly remember and rate each criterion appropriately.  If not I may just shave again and re-review.

EDIT – July 30, 2013:

I came back here to read what I had written about Tabac, and immediately realized I needed to update this.  Since having done this review, I have tried many other soaps and creams, and tried tabac several more times.  The scent and the performance have grown on me dramatically.  I even ditched the sample and bought a full ceramic tin of it and it has become one of my favorite soaps.  It’s a fantastic scent and a fantastic performer, and there is no wonder in my opinion why it is a favorite amongst many wetshavers.  The only wonder I have is how did I not like this more when I first reviewed it.  Silly me.

Here is my updated rating:

  • Scent – 4.5
  • Lather Performance – 5
  • Lather Life – 5
  • Overall – 5

Seriously.  One of the best ratings I have offered.  And it’s well deserved.  Also I had neglected to mention in the original review that this is one of the few large-production soaps to still be made with tallow.  No wonder the lather is so damn good.

Review: D.R. Harris – Arlington Shaving Soap

D.R. Harris - Arlington Shaving Soap

D.R. Harris – Arlington Shaving Soap

Ahhhhhh…. You hear that?  That’s the sound of luxury.  Its the exact theme of this shave.

D.R. Harris, is one of the “ivy league” shaving product producers from London.  They’ve been around for over 200 years, making the very best in creams, soaps, scents and other products.  In the batch of goodies I ordered from Garry’s Sample Shop, I received this sample of D.R. Harris Arlington Shaving Soap, arguably one of their most popular signature scents.

Arlington is a very simple scent:  citrus over fern.  So what does that mean, you say?  As usual, not a whole lot I can tell you without putting it up to your nose, but I’ll try my best.

It’s a soft scent.  I can definitely smell the citrus, but it’s not too strong.  I can also definitely smell the fern, which is almost impossible to describe.  But once you smell it, you’d easily say “oh yeah, fern”.  It’s a clean soft green scent, even with a hint of “soap” but definitely a great scent for spring, which I happen to be enjoying at the moment.  It also has that classic kind of smell, one from another time, similar to Geo F Trumper’s Eucris, but not as dark.  A wonderful outdoorsy spring scent.

Let’s talk about the lather.  Oh yeah.  I love me a good lather.  D.R. Harris Arlington soap is a triple-milled (french-milled) tallow soap.  Triple-milling will remove water, making the soap harder, richer, and much longer lasting.  So once you get a puck of this stuff, it ain’t goin anywhere anytime soon. I whipped it up using my Simpsons Duke II best badger brush and got an unbelievably thick, rich, luxurious lather.  It got better and better with each pass and left me with a fantastic cushion for my razor and wonderful slickness for the blade.

The remaining lather rinsed clean off my face, and left the wonderful arlington scent lingering.  I had an excellent BBS shave, and it left my skin feeling wonderfully moisturized.

This is a great soap to have in your rotation.  If the other D.R. Harris soaps are the same, then I’d feel safe recommending them all.

D.R. Harris Arlington Shaving Soap is available at Amazon.com!

Review: Geo F Trumper – Eucris Shaving Cream

Geo F Trumper - Eucris Shaving Cream

Geo F Trumper – Eucris Shaving Cream

Alright, its been a little while since I shaved with my buddy Geo.  So today I decided to go back to the company that drove me face-first into the world of classic wetshaving.

Today’s candidate was one that has been sitting here tempting me for a long time, Geo F. Trumper’s Eucris Shaving Cream.  It is part of a sampler of scents and creams that I got from Geo F Trumper a little while back.  I loved the Rose, and was hoping I was going to love this one just as much.

The way I am processing all these varied scents is to go with the basic and obvious first.  So from lime-scented products, I can go to orange and grapefruit, even a bay rum here and there.  Rose will smell exactly what I think it will smell like, as will your basic sandalwood.

But then there are these named scents, for instance Eucris.  And they end up being a bit of a surprise.  I’m going in not knowing what to expect.  I did this with Taylor of Old Bond Street’s Jermyn Street Shaving Cream and was blown away by what I found.  Not only the business-end lathering, but also the fun-side scent.

So here I was staring at Eucris, again not knowing what to expect.  Here’s what happened.

I lathered it as I lathered Trumpers Rose Shaving Cream.  I got to where I felt it was at its best.  Maybe I was wrong.  It seemed the lather was more of a 9 to the Rose’s 9.5.  Not a bad lather, per se, as some of the most recent creams I have tried, but not a great luxurious lather that I was expecting.  But I did still find it cushioning and also added slickness to my face.  The razor went across my skin really nice and the whiskers were gone.  I did have a bbs shave, but with just a few small weepers (tiny nicks) on my neck.  The stuff rinsed clean off my face, and also, more importantly, got better with each pass.  Just a little added whipping between passes and it was thicker and richer than the pass before, with the final pass being quite good.

The scent was really nice.  For those in the know, I am no fan of the Macy’s cologne counter.  I don’t really like musky scents at all.  Admittedly, this has a musky scent.  Here’s how it’s described on their website:

An eau de toilette with panache, the striking fragrance of Eucris sweeps the gentleman into the realms of utter sophistication and pleasure. The warm, sensual beauty of sandalwood, musk and moss is enhanced by a heart of rich, honey-like jasmine and exquisite muguet. Rousing, peppery top notes of cumin and coriander radiate with the fullness of plump blackcurrants.

Now that says a lot but im sure most of you don’t know what it smells like.  For me its a dark, manly scent that takes me back to a dusty victorian room, where gentlemen in bowler hats, with lit pipes and glasses of bourbon in hand were discussing matters of politics.  This scent was launched in the early 1900’s and absolutely smells like it.

It may not be my favorite scent, but maybe its one I would like to have on hand for poker night or a wine tasting.  It’s actually quite luxurious and I can see it being a nice scent to wear on days or nights where you want to be a gentleman amongst men.

Geo F Trumper Eucris Shaving Cream is available at Amazon.com!