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Any requests?

Hey everyone!!

Yes it has certainly been quite a while since I’ve posted.  And as I start thinking about posting more reviews, I realize I have never actually done this:  What shaving products would you like me to review?  Any new soapmakers out there that you want me to write about?  Any legends that I have missed?

Leave a comment below and let me know what you’d like me to review!

Review: Jack Black Beard Lube Conditioning Shave

Jack Black Beard Lube Conditioning Shave

Jack Black Beard Lube Conditioning Shave

Whats up guys!

It’s been several months since I visited Pasteur Pharmacy in NYC, but after having a really awesome conversation with Leon, one of the guys working there, he gave me several samples of products that were new to the amazing shelves of shaving products.  One of these was Jack Black’s Beard Lube.  I tried one of these a little while back, and haven’t touched it since. That is until Movember came along.

So as this year’s Mo began, I decided that maybe this shaving cream (or gel?) might be the best one to use for week one.  Seeing that I don’t have to bowl or face lather, but rather just apply it to the areas I want to shave.  You see, I’m doing a really badass trucker mo this time, so I wanted to be sure I don’t under- or over-shave the appropriate areas.

Movember 13th

Movember 13th

What I found very beneficial was not only could I apply it to only the areas I wanted to, if I over-applied it, I could see right through and notice where I should shave and where I shouldn’t.  It was kind of the perfect solution for precision shaving that this awesome moustache required.

But let’s move on to the performance.  If I could say anything about this product, I would say it came from a bottle of hair conditioner.  I say this from experience, as many guys have reported that while showering, they put conditioner on their scruff to soften the whiskers in preparation for their shave.  You’ll also notice that the way conditioner feels on your facial skin is exactly the way this Beard Lube feels on your skin.  And it definitely softens the beard whiskers too.

During your shave, you’ll notice that no matter how wiry your whiskers might be, once they are lubed up with this stuff, they can hardly put up a fight.  So the whiskers do get softened.  And there is a degree of slickness to this stuff, but it’s no match for a really good shave soap, which provides more slickness and more cushion.  I did notice tho that even when I was shaving ATG, I did not get any nicks.  So this stuff did remove the whiskers without too much skin damage.

Sadly, theres no lather, and as such, no cushion.  So if that’s your thing, and its kind of my thing too, then this might not be the product for you.  I suspect you already knew that.  But if you’re into trying something different, and maybe you just don’t feel like getting your shaving brush wet today, then you may want to give this stuff a shot.

The scent is straight up peppermint and menthol.  Not exactly my thing, but not terrible by any means.

In the end, if you are into traditional shaving and the like, stick with soaps/creams.  If you miss the days when you shaved with a gel, or if you like menthol, or don’t have a brush, then this is definitely a contender.

  • Scent – 2
  • Lather Performance – 4
  • Lather Life – N/A
  • Overall – 3 (a decent non-brush shaving product)

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Review: MOVEMBER starts with a Meta Nectar shave from HTGAM!

CaptainRob in the shave den on Movember 1st.

CaptainRob in the shave den on Movember 1st.

November is finally here, and that can only mean one thing: I missed Halloween.  No, of course I didn’t.  Halloween was actually very good for me, as I won a contest whose prize is 5 brand new tins of soap from Douglas Smythe and HowToGrowAMoustache.com!  The timing could not be better.  In fact, this Movember is the perfect storm, because this year I am growing my mo’ as a part of Team HTGAM!!

So throughout this month, not only will I be growing out my genetically thick Eastern European moustache (most likely with a little handlebar action), but I will also be posting pictures along the way, and of course more product reviews, especially those delicious HTGAM tins that’ll be coming in the mail soon.  And hopefully in the process I will help raise some funds for men’s charities.

If you would like to donate through my Mo Space page:  http://mobro.co/robc43

And if you would like to visit the HTGAM Team page:  http://moteam.co/htgam

Now, some of you may be asking, what is with this Meta Nectar shave?  Oh, well, this just happens to be one of my favorite product lines from HowToGrowAMoustache.

Meta Nectar has been described as Arabian Nights in a tin.  It’s a deeply robust, sweet, flowery, maybe even fruity, scent made up of orange blossom, honey, vanilla, and other scents that I cannot even attempt to pick out.  It’s not very spicy or woody, but damn is it good.

When lathered up, the scent will fill your shave den and take you on a journey.  You might find yourself strolling down a middle eastern market.  Or maybe out in the desert with the pyramids in the background.  Or being oogled and pampered by the seductive local persian women like a hardworking swashbuckler should.  But what you won’t feel is that feeling like you got a can of shaving goo shmeared on your face, running late for work, wondering if there’s even time for breakfast, while you tear off tiny bits of toilet paper to stick on the wounds your crappy cartridge razor left in it’s wake.  That ain’t happening because you are a smart man.  A man with dignity.  A man who shaves like a man, and treats his face with respect, dammit.

As for the lather, man if you’ve been reading my blog at all, you know that HTGAM is the bomb when it comes to lather.  These soaps are top of the line artisan products and need to be in every shave den.  Lately I have been whipping up some incredible lathers with these soaps.  Typically I face lather with a boar brush.  One pro tip is to put some hot water on top of the puck before you attack with your brush.  This leads to a quick and easy brush load and the lather will just explode, easily creating enough for a fantastic 3-pass shave, which is exactly what I kicked off this Mo’ with.

And I finished with the Meta Nectar aftershave lotion.  Oh man.  For a relatively cheap price, you get a bottle full of magic.  The Neem, Argan, and Calendula Oils.  The organic aloe juice, witch hazel, vitamin E, Spirulina, and on and on and on.  One teeny pumpfull of this stuff will spread on your face evenly with enough goodness to keep your face amazingly moisturized and in a state of healing for many hours.  And not only will it feel great, but it will smell great too.

I’m not saying all this because I won 5 tins of HTGAM soaps, tho it was pretty kickass and totally unexpected.

I’m not saying all this because I am a member of team HTGAM this Movember, tho this is also crazy kickass.

I’m saying all this because it’s damn true.  HTGAM’s stuff is really good.  If you haven’t checked it out, what are you waiting for?

Happy Movember everyone.  Life is good.  Set up an appointment with your doctor for a physical and blood test.  Make sure you’re in good shape.  Exercise and eat right.  And let it grow.  If you’d like to read why I first got into Movember and wetshaving, check out the about me article.

And please support the cause.  You can click on the banner below to donate.

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Wickham Soap Company offers 10% discount for BayRumDiaries.com readers!

Wickham Soap Co - Super Smooth Shaving Soap

Wickham Soap Co – Super Smooth Shaving Soap

To my fellow shavers and readers of my blog:  For the month of April, Darron at Wickham Soap Company in the UK has offered all my readers a 10% discount on the soap I just reviewed:  Bay Rum Super Smooth 160g tub.

To get the discount, just use the coupon code bay-rum-diaries during the checkout process.

The soap is of excellent quality and is a great and classic take on bay rum.  It will make a great addition to any shave cave.

Here is their website:  http://w-soap.co.uk

Click here to read my review of this soap!

Thanks Darron!

Pasteur Pharmacy

Pasteur Pharmacy

Pasteur Pharmacy

My friends, and when I say my friends, that includes you ya dirty landlubber, I have travelled to the great New City, on the shores of the Appalachian Mountains, where Henry Hudson himself first encountered the …  Ok, I live right outside of Manhattan and took the bus in.  But my point is that I have found the sole paradise of every wetshaver in the North East of the United States:  Pasteur Pharmacy.

Now I cannot truly use the word “sole” because there are actually two of them in New York City.  But for the sake of this article, I visited the location at 53 East 34th St.  Its a very small unassuming front for what is a cornucopia of traditional shaving products inside.

For those who don’t know, there is no other place that I know of in the entire area in and around New York City.  Yes, there is the occasional “Art of Shaving” store, which is great in their own right.  But that is one brand.  Inside of Pasteur’s seems to be every brand.  And every type of product.

I have become so accustomed to purchasing all of my supplies either directly from smaller vendors or from sailing the Amazon.  But when I walked into this place, and encountered shelf after shelf after shelf of shaving products, I had to quickly head back to the door and grab a shopping basket.  I knew I wouldn’t be able to hold it all in my hands.

An entire section dedicated to brushes.  So many brands, so many styles.  2-band, 3-band, badger, boar.  My BAD (brush acquisition disorder) immediately spiked.  I took a swig of rum and moved on.  I noticed another massive selection of straight razors and safety razors.  I took another swig.  No real estate was wasted.  Between shelves were thin slivers displaying many different brands of razor blades.  I loaded up my basket.

And thats when I took a deep breath and moved on to really take in what I noticed first but was so overwhelmed I had to skip it and come back.. The soaps, creams, and aftershaves.  Here they were, column after column, shelf after shelf, of these products.  So many brands.  There were entire areas dedicated to some of the more major brands, notably Truefitt & Hill, Taylor of Old Bond Street, and Geo F. Trumper.  They had just about everything these brands sell on their shelves.  And it didn’t stop there.  Honestly I had a hard time trying to conjure up a name that wasn’t on their shelves.

They even had items that are no longer for sale!  For instance, when I had visited a few months ago, they still had Penhaligon’s English Fern soap and Klar Kabinett soap, both of which are no longer in production and highly sought after.  And to my amazement, there was no markup on these products.  This was brought to my attention by a great great man named Leon.

Leon is a pharmacist who works at this Pasteur location.  I have visited Pasteur’s twice now, and both times we had a good long conversation.  One of the first things we talked about was how much Leon and the owner really enjoy the fact that they are one of the only (if not the only) brick-n-mortar establishments with this large an array of traditional shaving products.  They take pride in their stock, and really appreciate the manufacturers, and especially the customers, who give them business.

They relish it so much that they aren’t interested in it in a “making money” kind of way.  So they will never mark up any product that becomes a rarity.  They will simply sell it at the standard price, no matter what.

Leon also spent some considerable time asking me my preferences in products, and if there was anything that I don’t see on their shelves that I could recommend.  I was so overwhelmed that I couldn’t think of anything, except to say that there were a good many smaller-level artisan soapmakers out there that are really deserving of attention.  Some names that come to mind are Krampert’s Finest Bay Rum, and Mike’s Natural Soaps, and Weber Razors.

And the very last time I visited the store, Leon mentioned to me that he had met another shaving blogger who had offered to give Leon an old-school shave, using products of Leon’s choice.  So at that point, Leon asked me to recommend him an aftershave.  So I scanned his shelves, and found the brand to recommend, which was quite a simple chore on my part:  Captain’s Choice Bay Rum Aftershave.  The Captain is a great man, who is very involved in the shaving community, and it was a real honor to recommend his product, which was a newcomer to Pasteur’s shelves.

If you live in or near NYC, or are planning to visit, you simply MUST head on down to either location of Pasteur’s.  But of course I highly recommend the Pasteur Pharmacy on 34th Street.  And if you do go there, please tell Leon I sent you.  He’ll know who I am and will make your visit that much better.

I really am very much looking forward to my next visit to Pasteur Pharmacy.  Do yourself a favor and make an effort to check it out.  You’ll be very glad you did.

Captain’s Note:  I had taken a slew of pictures during my last visit, but somehow they have all been washed out to sea.  Of course, the good news is that I now have to go back and take more pictures!

Review: Razorpouch

Razorpouch

Razorpouch

Once in a while I get contacted through Twitter by a company that wants me to check out their product.  Usually it’s a soap or aftershave maker, as those are pretty much all I have reviewed.  But I have been meaning to review other shaving-related products here, and I am finally super excited to tell you about one:  The Razorpouch.

This review has been coming for a long time.  I’ve had a few of these hanging around for a few months now.  Those of you who have been following me might remember that I was away from the end of July until the beginning of September on a tour with my band.  One nice surprise upon getting back to my apartment was that the Razorpouches I hung up were still there.

The Razorpouch is a simple, yet effective pouch made of clear vinyl, which can hang several ways depending on what you are going to hold, and where you are hanging it.  It hangs by magnets, by suction cup, or through a pre-made hole in the vinyl, as to hang it from a hook.  The original intent seems to be to store razors in your shower.  But it doesn’t have to end there.

As the Razorpouch website points out, you can use it to store shaving supplies, a toothbrush and toothpaste, combs, scissors, or anything you need handy in your bathroom.  It doesn’t even need to stop at your bathroom door.  You can keep it in the garage to store pens, parkers, or boxcutters.  This is one of those really great products whose use is limited only by your imagination.

Not only are both the magnets and suction cup strong (they are both still in place since I put them up back in July), but you can even use a combination of them if you are worried.  It’s a simple, yet effective design!

And I haven’t even yet mentioned the best part: the price!  As of this writing, you can get a razor pouch from the company website for $6.99 + free shipping!  Beat that.

I should note:  This blog caters to traditional shaving.  So I will be honest that I don’t use my straight razor or my double edge razors in the shower.  Either of them falling with all that water would be very bad for my toes.  That said, I’ve got plenty of other uses I can imagine for the Razorpouch.  It really is a great product 🙂

See You In September!

QARSideviewPromoThe sails have been raised, the hatches have been battened, the jars of rum have been bayed, the cannons loaded, and all hands are on deck.  My ship has set sail and is currently at sea.

Ok, I’m really not a pirate, or a captain.  I don’t even own a boat.  It sounds corny but my day job is “rock star”.  I handle the duties of bass guitar, keyboards, and backing vocals for NYC’s Breaking Laces. We are no celebs, yet, but we get a decent amount of radio play and we do fairly well for ourselves.

The reason I am pulling the curtain aside on my other job is to let you all know that I will be away from the ship that is bayrumdiaries.com, for about the next two months.  I am currently on tour with the band, and have limited shaving supplies with me.  On top of that, our tour schedule is one of the heaviest we’ve had in a long time and we’ll be travelling and playing almost every day for the next two months.  So I won’t really have time to write reviews and articles on a regular basis.

I do have a couple articles in mind though.  I plan to write about my recent trip to NYC’s wetshaver’s paradise, Pasteur Pharmacy.  And I have a couple reviews to write as well.

For those interested in what I am travelling with, here is what is in my shaving kit:

Full disclosure:  Most of the links above, and in my reviews, are Amazon Affiliate links.  In essence, if you click on one of these links and purchase a product, Amazon throws me some loose change.  Literally, it’s usually less than a dollar (though sometimes more).  This comes out of Amazon’s pocket, not yours, so it doesn’t cost you any extra to buy through those links.  You don’t have to use them, but you get a big ol’ tip of the hat from me if you do, and the loose change goes to paying for the hosting fees of this website.  I appreciate your readership, whether you use those links or not.  And if you do, you have my thanks…

I should be back home around the end of September, and I am looking forward to picking up where I left off.

Dont forget to hit me up on twitter and facebook.  If you’re interested in our tour schedule, you can check it out here.  Perhaps I will see you on the high seas!

Rob

CaptainRob at his day job

CaptainRob at his day job