Shave Soap

6 shaving tips that changed my life forever- Mark Herro

Just follow the link to a better shave every time ! 

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/6-shaving-tips-that-changed-life-forever.html

Mark Herro Aka Mantic59 again takes your shave to the next level ! Thanks for everything you do Mark ūüôŹūüŹĹ

Aaron’s Pick April 5th,2017: Extro & Bram Van Den Berg

Welcome to the newest feature on the Wet Shaver Review ! Every week one or, more of our team will choose a #sotd that resonates with us, to share with the whole wet shaving community. This week my pick comes from Holland by Bram Van Den Berg; I hope you enjoy this #sotd #review as much as I did ! Thank you Bram for your contributions.

Man, do I have a start of a great day!

The sun is out, temperatures outside are really nice and the dogs are in a very, very good and relaxed mood. What more can I wish for, right?

Well, a good shave would me a nice addition to the day!
And man, did I get one! grin

Yesterday I got a package in with a few new soaps and aftershaves. And one of those was this Extro Bergamotto di Calabria.

When I opened the jar for the first time and gave it it’s first sniff…
I knew this was going to be good!
As you all might know, i am a sucker for good citrus-scented soaps!

Directly out of the jar, you smell a nice blend of citrus fruits where the orange scent is the most dominant one.
So far, a good start.

Lathering is, as with any Extro soap, a really easy task.
The stuff lathers like a beast with my huge Rod Neep brush!
The lather is really nice and thick and really really slick and it smells like….heaven!

If i want to compare the scent to some other Italian soaps that I have used throughout the years, the best comparison is with the TFS Bergamotto Neroli and the TFS Zagara e Gelsomino.

It isn’t as overly sweet as the Bergamotto Neroli, but isn’t as mild as the Zagara either. A very nice middle-ground between those two.

From all the citrus scents, the orange is still the most dominant, even when the stuff is lathered.
A lovely sweet scent with a slight tangy note to it. Love it! grin

Shaving with this stuff is, as expected with the Extro soaps.
A very nice slick and a very nice and protective soap.
Nothing to complain here.

Now, the aftershave is where the whole thing comes together like PB&J.

IMPORTANT!
First, give the bottle a good shake, so you can mix up all the ingredients properly!

The aftershave compliments the soap so good! As with any Extro combo I have tried so far.

The aftershave has the more bitter/tangy citrus scents and the orange moves to the back.

An amazing combo of a sweet soap and a more bitter and tangy aftershave to make a really nicely rounded combo!
Something that really fits the great sunny weather!

And the best part of it all is, I have a pomade that matches this scent profile!

So to compliment this all, I am wearing Nostalgic Handmade Super Waterbased Clean Cut Citrus today!

I’m going to enjoy the sunshine now! Bubaaaaaai!

Have a great day ladies and gentlemen!

-Aaron

Extro’ Tabacco Shaving soap and After Shave Review

An in depth video review of Tabacco by Extro’ Cosmesi. We will discuss both the soap & after shave created by Donato Cinniello, brought to me from Paolo Tondi of TVB Shaving. If you love Tobacco scents and top end European artisan shaving look no further than Italy and Extro’

  • Soap (croap) – Extro’ Tabacco
  • Brush: Marfin no.69 custom Italian Briar Silver tip badger
  • Razor: Vintage Dubl Duck GoldEdge straight razor
  • After Shave / EDT: Extro’ Tabacco

Follow the smoke…

No, I’m not going to review a BBQ Restaurant or a Tobacconist Shop. Not at all. We’re a Wet-Shaving-themed blog, aren’t we? So, what I’m going to talk about this evening is one of the most original and great soaps on the market, at least for my tastes! It was given to me as a present for my birthday by my girlfriend, who struggled a lot to get it, but in the end, thanks to the patience and kindness of different persons (the artisan himself plus other resellers) she managed to have the soap shipped to Italy!

In my previous articles I told you about my top 2 “surprises of the year”; well, this soap completes the Top 3, sitting on the third step of the podium. The soap is Cigar Lounge, by Soapy Bathman, run by Chris Erskine, a Canadian artisan who knows his job and created a very nice line of soaps, AS balms, Shampoo Bars, etc. with a variety of scents to please the tastes of the most discerning gentlemen out there.

Cigar Lounge. The name itself intrigued me from the start. I’m a very moderate smoker, but from time to time I like smoking a good cigar (both Habanos and Italian, Toscano, cigars) or smoking a pipe, just to spend a relaxing evening. I didn’t know what to expect from the soap. Cigar Lounges are not so common in Italy and reading the evocative description on the producer site didn’t completely unveil the aura of mystery about this soap.

“Imagine yourself sitting in a smoky Cigar Lounge, glass of liquor in front of you, soft raspy jazz music gently whispering in the background. ¬†Smelling the thick, smooth scent of your cigar with every exhale. With a blend of bergamot, lemon and spiced Tobacco leaves you will picture that everytime you shave.”¬† (from http://soapybathman.ca/item_38/Cigar-Lounge-Shave-Soap.htm )

When the soap arrived, I instantly fell in love with the presentation and, most of all, the scent. If I had to choose the word which describes it best, it would be (apart from Awesome) Balanced. Yes, because I was afraid of a soap which would smell too smokey, resulting off-putting. Not at all! The scent is a wonderful combination of citrusy notes, with hints of liquor and cigar smoke here and there, all perfectly balanced. I think this is the key of the success of this soap, which got very positive reviews everywhere.

Scent is not everything, however; so, how does the soap perform? At first I had some difficulties in lathering; nothing dramatic, but I wasn’t fully satisfied. I asked Chris for advice and he was very kind and quick to link me his video tutorial. Soaking the soap for 3-5 minutes hugely improves the lathering process. The lather obtained is very creamy, the protection for the skin is very good and the scent is strong enough to be smelled after the end of the shave. I like the scent of this soap so much that sometimes I don’t apply aftershave just to continue smelling it! Just a bit of talcum powder. ūüôā

Overall this is a great soap which I highly recommend to all those who:

  • enjoy citrusy scents
  • enjoy the scent of a burning cigar
  • want to try a one-of-a-kind soap!

In picture: SOTD 21/01/2016, the Romeo y Julieta n¬į3 hasn’t been smoked yet! ūüôā

 

Through the Fine Fire Craft: Cut Throat

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     Today I bring to you one of my favorite new soaps from 2015: Maria Arman’s Through the Fine Fire Craft Cut Throat. It’s a fougere in the classic barbershop style of Dana Canoe, Pinaud Clubman, Avon Wild Country, etc.
     The scent is very simple. Lemon, lavender, oakmoss. Simple, clean, and fresh. To me, I find that it combines the vibrant “green” of Clubman, softened by the powder note in Canoe. Excellent smell to wake up to. While it may not be anything “groundbreaking”, it’s comfortably familiar, and sure to be a hit. Here’s how it’s described on their site:

     Cut Throat shaves are straight razor, old school, shave like your grandfather kind of shaves. Cut Throat soap is a vintage take on a barbershop scent. We took our inspiration from a cologne from the 1930’s to combine a light fougere with powdery barbershop. Lavender, Lemon, Clary Sage and Cedarwood mix with Vanilla, Musk, and Oak Moss. 4oz of soap in a low profile 6oz jar will provide you plenty of room to load your brush in. This soap will provide plenty of slickness and cushion for your straight razor shave with our new hand ground razors. Pair it with the matching aftershave too!

    Now performance. This is always subjective. But I think you’ll be hard pressed to find a soap that performs this well at this price point. Word to the wise. This soap is soft. Very soft. Essentially a cream. Do NOT go willy-nilly with your brush like I did, otherwise you’ll have WAY too much product on your brush, and end up wasting a bunch of really good soap. As for the lathering? Divine. Very thick, slick, and rich lather.
     The post shave feel is second to none. The tussah (sp?) silk is most likely the contributing factor to this. The silk also adds a “fibrous” texture to the lather as well (any users of a fiber hair product will understand what I’m trying to get at). And as for aftershave? Well, you could always go for the matched set, but, Clubman, Canoe, or any of that ilk will match perfectly.
    In short, we have a traditionally scented, lather rich, protective soap, that easily outperforms most at its price point, and is on par with many costing more. Check ’em out for yourselves at Through the Fine Fire Craft.

K Shave Worx: Word to Ya Mutha

    

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K Shave Worx is an up and coming vendor of soaps and bushes. Although I’ve not had the chance to get my hands on a brush, I’m planning on it. Why? Because if it’s anything like their soaps, it’ll be amazing.
     My first experience with K Shave Worx was bittersweet. Why? Well, I received a sample of their Midnight Cherry Bomb. Delightful scent. Amazing performance. The soap lathered excellently, with any brush I threw at it, even with my hard water (rural area, with miles of piping to travel through before it reaches my tap). “But Tom!” you say, “you said it was bittersweet?” Yes, despite all the awesome, the scent and my face did not get along. With a heavy heart, I relayed the news to Kevin and Kelly. They too were bummed, but asked if I was game to try some others. Now, I’ll be honest and say my expectations were low. And man, that was a good thing. Because the other soaps they’ve sent me performed exactly the same, yet with no face burn!
     Word to ya Mutha is a new offering, not yet fully integrated into their line. It’s a mentholated vanilla, which has become the soap I find myself going to over the past few days. In the tin, the scent is a very strong vanilla (almost offputting), but it mellows out when lathered, which also brings out the crispness of the menthol.
    In terms of performance, we have a standard soft soap, that (to me) marries the qualities of two of my favourite soap styles; the dense lather bomb of the Turk style and the smooth face feel of the Italian croaps. While any brush I used gave me an excellent lather, I prefer my √ľbersoft Nathan Clark. A few swirls, even on the small sample puck, gives me plenty of lather for multiple passes.
    As for the post shave, the menthol carries through the entire shave, as well as a 10ish minute hangtime into the post shave. The menthol is right in the sweet spot. More “refreshingly cool” than “my toes are turning black”. As for my face? Remarkably fresh.¬†Of the ingredients used (Stearic Acid, Water, Coconut Oil, Potassium Hydroxide, Fragrance, Sodium Hydroxide, Castor Oil, Kokum Butter, Shea Butter, Menthol, Sodium Lactate, Glycerin) I’d say the castor oil and the shea and kokum butters are the culprits of the smoothness. As for an aftershave product, this is one of those rare soaps where none really is needed. It’s that good in my opinion.
    So there ya have it folks. A great product made by some real decent people. Learn more at their website, https://www.etsy.com/shop/KShaveWorx, and check out their Instagram and Facebook accounts as well!
   

SOTD: June 9th, 2015 “Tobacco Tuesday”

What an excellent shave today, I could not have wanted more. Barrister & Mann always delivers top- shelf performance, and unique original scents. 

To most people when they hear “tobacco” the instantly think about cigarettes or, a cigar; well I don’t use either. I do however enjoy the fragrance of both green uncut tobacco leaf and even the aromatic smell of a pipe with that signature Burley or, cavendish scent. Today happened to be that theme day for the tobacco scent in any form. The brand or, what part of the shave that tobacco scent arrived was irrelevant, but I pretty much used it throughout. 

Again a great shave, a wonderful scent, and so far the sun is shinning. The day is looking pretty darn good, shave on !

#sotd June 9th, 2015

#tobaccotuesday #wsr
Pre: Hot shower w/ Jack Blacks Deep Dive

Soap: Barrister&Mann “Roam”

Brush: Vie-Long SE Lord Randall badger/horse

Razor: Dovo 6/8 La Forme

After shave: Barrister & Mann “Roam”
Jams – Strung out Exile in Oblivion

In memory of June 5th, 1956 “For my Father”

Today is always a day of reflection for me, the title alone of this post gives away this has to do with my father. This will not be a long or drawn out post, but a glimpse into my life, and a remembrance of a life taken way¬†too soon. I have said countless times I was raised by my grandparents and¬†great grandparents, which is accurate….my great grandfather taught me to shave, and started my journey in this amazing community. My Father was an¬†officer, and thus was not around as much as he or, I would have liked. So instead of moving constantly as is the norm, I stayed with family. What I did¬†learn from my father as¬†ironically when his time was up my tenure began, I never achieved nor, wanted to become an officer, but I was very close to say the least. My father taught me what it was to be a man, a father, to have respect for myself and to put others before myself always and in everyway. To love my God, my country, and to listen to those¬†much wiser than myself.

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Fast Forward to 8 years ago; my father passed away from Cancer, something I wish even I could just¬†remove from¬†anyone and everyone.¬†Renal cell carcinoma to be exact or, cancer of the Kidney, there is no cure, and it’s a highly aggressive cancer. He was¬†just¬†51 by a few days when he passed surrounded by family and friends and even¬†brothers in arms acting¬†full bird¬†Colonel’s and those he served with by his side. My fathers life was measured by accomplishment not by years….I find it hard to think¬†most people to achieve what he did in 40 something years, to be reached by those living double his time here. Driven is a understatement, and I cannot overstate he was my best friend, and I miss him dearly. Today he would have turned 59, but his¬†time had come now near a decade ago.¬† Well I guess I lied this is turning a bit to the longer side.

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To the point, I choose to remember those both living and not, by using birth year razors, of which I have nearly one for every person in my family going back to the early 1900’s. I did NOT use my father’s birth year razor today. His razor is a B-2 Gillette¬†Super¬†Speed Red-Tip replated in Rhodium by Razor Emporium. It is an amazing razor and Matt Pisarcik did¬†nothing less then a stellar job. Razor¬†Emporium was much smaller when they did this job so me and Matt spoke throughout the process of this revamp. Instead of that razor I decided to¬† honor my father a different way, I used his favorite after shave and cologne ! I am a straight razor shaver, and to that point even my father would tell me be true to myself not a¬†razor in his memory. Brut was his favorite scent…plain and simple he used disposable razors,¬†canned goo, but at least he used Brut, which was better than the razor idea as the aroma of this Fougere scent reminded me of¬†him all day long, combined with Paco Rabanne pour homme another wonderful, and fitting EDT to¬†go with Brut. Finally before I sign off to answer the question of¬† “what razor did I use” ? it was a vintage 1875 Abraham Brookebank 13/16 near wedge with original horn scales and a great example of a traditional barbers notch. I choose this razor not only because it’s a stellar razor even after 140 appx year ! this razor has seen more history than any of us, and in my mind shows that nothing is ever really gone, but should be cherished and treated with care, and loved like it was your last day to¬†ever see it again, on that note I thank you all for sticking with me through this story, and while I miss my father I do find solace by dedicating this shave today in the memory¬†of my father, and what he instilled upon me to this day.

dad and me0001

  • Pre: Hot shower w/ Clarisonic Aria deep pore head and cleanser
  • Soap: Barrister & Mann “Beaudelaire” Fougere
  • Brush: Thater 4292/4 set in cocobolowood handle and 2-band
  • Razor: 1875 Abraham Brookebank 13/16 near wedge with barbers notch and dark horn scales
  • Lather type: American Stonecraft bowl
  • Moustache¬†type:Handlebar
  • Wax & Pomade: Pinaud black & Murray’s Superior
  • Post shave: Cold water rinse
  • After shave: Classic Brut
  • Balm/Other: Brut balm with Shea butter and aloe
  • Fragrance: Paco Rabanne pour homme

SOTD: May 15th, 2015 “Refreshed”

Simply a great shave, nothing fancy at all, but I was proud of this shave ! It was unique, special and memorable for a few reasons.

  
How many of us by things…. Anything, it does not even need be shaving related, and it sits ? “It was a good idea when I bought it” ! Well I bought a pretty full hone set,  going from 220 DMT’s and Norton 220k/1000k  to flatting stones and 1k-2k 4K/8k and finishing stones made by Norton and Shapton, and from Naniwa 12k as well as chromium oxides and Diamond sprays which are equal to about 30k ! I never used them; there was really just no need until now ! The wanna be razor doctor was in the house. 

  
So I prayed a LOT ! As I did not want to ruin my blade, but wanted to be self sufficient, I easily could have sent my razors to Lynn Abrams or Don Addleman, and slept easily, but how do I become a better shaver by doing that ? I don’t. So I watched a few of Lynn’s video’s and the moment of truth came….. And guess what ? The world did not end and actually it worked ! My razor felt like it was brand new again to the point I did not even feel the blade ! I had to check the lather for stubble or, I wouldn’t have believed it was shaving. I had no idea how dull the blade was until I sharpened it, so guess what ? What was originally a scary process; became three razors doing a simple 12K and 30K refresh on synthetic stones ! I was proud; what is it 20 razors and I become a Honemeister ? LOL !  

  

  
  
I have a ways to go, and I’m happy to go slow and enjoy the learning process ! I may pick up some “project razors” to learn to reset a bevel doing the circle method, learn to double bevel, and run pyramids all the way trough finishing the razor like I did here. Learning and being self sufficient is all part of the game, so shave on, don’t be afraid it’s only a razor; just do your homework first. Shave on folks and happy Friday- Aaron

  • Pre: Clarisonic Aria normal brush and hydro cleanser 
  • Prep: Hot shower and Nivea face wash
  • Super-Lather: Cella & GFT Almond
  • Brush: Simpsons Duke 3 in best badger
  • Razor: Ralf Aust 5/8 in faux ebony scales
  • Lather: Scuttle
  • Moustache: handlebar
  • Wax & Pomade: Pinaud Black & Reuzel Red
  • Post Shave: Cold water rinse & cold towels
  • After shave: Pinaud Classic Vanilla
  • Balm: RazoRock R160

Mei√üner Tremonia “Strong “N Scottish”

Today is long over due, and I have been meaning to get this out there for at least a month now, but as they say “life gets in the way sometimes”. I’m really excited to talk about today’s soap as it is the “Other” Mei√üner Tremonia¬†¬†soap I have used. I had stated in my review of “Dark Lime” from Mei√üner Tremonia; I felt each of their soaps had a specific skin type in mind when they were made. I also complimented German products as some of the most stringently controlled and tested products in the world, be it a car, boiler, or shaving soap I do not feel they cut any corners. So lets get to it, and talk about some suds !

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Packaging – As with the other offerings from Mei√üner Tremonia¬†I felt like I was more opening a box that would contain jewelry or, some other precious item. The packaging was for a refill that as you can see in the photo above, is encapsulating the soap in a foam protective form fitted case. The actual box is like I said nothing to say lightly, this is thick; not your typical thin refill box. The label is fairly basic in design but says a lot… it is that German minimalist thing, less is more and the box, basically says Finest Shaving soap with Scotch Whisky and Wool Fat. Keep that in mind down this review a bit. The back also lists a very different ingredient list than “Dark Lime”, again I believe each soap is intended for a specific skin type. We will get to that in a moment. So as far as packaging goes; don’t throw these out, I can think of many things worthy of the protection these boxes can be used for or, recycle them. Either way we are off to a good start !

Scent- This is a very love it or, hate it scent I will not sugar coat that. This is where that back label starts to tell us a lot about what to expect for the scent. The third ingredient is Whiskey ! the other two before it are just an oil and a hardening agent stearic acid as well as both NaOh & KOH salts to make this a shaving soap. Further down the list, but more potent in aroma you see types of wood like Cedar wood, and Juniper wood tar and Lanolin ! These all play a role in the scent you will experience.¬†I would describe this a believe it or, not¬†“like” a smoker used in smoking barbecue !¬†Similar to a southern pit that is smoke, wood, and most of all whisky ! instantly I was thrown back as I expected to smell only Scotch Whiskey, and that just is not the case. So in this department, I have to say if you were to blind buy this you may be saying “what the heck did I just get”. Please do not think I am saying it is a bad aroma, actually, I am saying it is way more complex then just whiskey….this is a smokey, woodsy, and whiskey scented soap where these scents blend wonderfully to create what most whiskey lovers would probably find to make a very fine libation. Do not drink this soap……I promise a different result from actual whiskey will ensue.

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Lather-¬† Again different soaps for different skin types and this is evident again by simply reading the back label ! The lather is absolutely on par with some of the best soaps I have used. If I was to compare it to it’s same brand “Dark Lime” I would describe the two as complete opposites, “Dark Lime” was wonderful so don’t misinterpret my words, but “Strong ‘N Scottish” was more my type of lather !¬†Cushioning is an understatement, easily no matter what brush or, water type I¬†threw at this soap it was fairly consistent; Thick, Creamy, and aromatic with the scents mentioned above staying with the¬†lather throughout the shave. Also worthy of mention is the reddish tint to the lather, which is mild and easily seen while making¬†the lather as a result no doubt to the red clay they use (again on the label) I found it unique. Post shave this lather left my face super soft due to the¬†lanolin that is in this specifics soaps formulation. I believe we are all starting to see with this brand each soap is formulated differently, where as “Dark Lime” is great for oily skin, “Strong ‘N Scottish” is meant to leave¬†your face fully¬†moisturized. It does however omit the Shea butter that¬†is in¬†other offerings. Just my¬†opinion, but I’ll take Lanolin any¬†day.

Slickness/Glide- What can I say here….. it is fairly straight forward. I would have to say aside from Scent, this is the only other place YMMV. For me as a primarily straight razor shaver, Glide is without a doubt your number one concern. Mei√üner Tremonia¬† has done an adequate job creating a slick soap…I can’t really say much more, except, make your lather properly ! Too much water or, too hot of water will make this a thinned out mess that is rendered sub- par, not enough water, and you will have an airy and again sub-par lather with little to no slickness. I always recommend start drier, and add water to your desired consistency. With a DE or SE razor….I would think you¬†would get great results fairly fast, and without much thought. I am not a DE shaver nor, do I put little thought into shaving with a straight razor held to my neck ! I make sure the lather is slick as can be, and this soap absolutely delivers ! Just take your time to “learn” the soaps nuances, once you dial it in there are few soaps that I find commercially that will¬†come close to¬†¬†Mei√üner Tremonia¬†“Strong ‘N Scottish”.

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In Conclusion-¬† No matter how slick or great a soap performs, you need to enjoy using it; on the most basic of level. That most basic level are two things “Do you like how it smells” you don’t want to gag through your shave, and “Does the lather hold up” no razor burn ! So based on this, same as with other offerings by literally every soap maker, there is a place in someone’s den for a Smokey Woodsy and Whiskey soap ! I would personally find this a great winter or fall fragrance as it just feels like that to me. Many could argue it reminds them of barbecue, and they would be 100% correct. Scent is subjective and to my senses I found this soap to meet the mark that I would say it’s worth a try, but remember the dominant notes ! this is not a mint julep !

Secondly the lather, as said above and again every soap has its own ways, and this is no exception. I found this soap when started a bit drier and worked into a rich & creamy lather with tons of glide was simple ! 2-3 minutes and I was on my way to a BBS shave !

My last thoughts to convey are pairings being this is such a unique blend of scents is what to use for an aftershave. Well you have a few options. My¬†first reaction is to make sure you know Mei√üner Tremonia¬†makes after shave splashes and lotions. They unfortunately do not say “Strong ‘N Scottish” or, “Dark Lime” though what they do offer will compliment their entire range of soaps as all the after shaves have a wood note combined with beer or, wine etc. or, even a unscented version. I am a fan of unscented with this particular soap as its just that unique. If you wanted to get adventurous a fine musk or, even a Bourbon infused bay rum will work well with this….Just don’t rub Scotch whiskey on yourself….. try explaining that to the police !

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Would I recommend this- YES , but please judge the soap against itself not it’s name as this is a very complex soap with way more than whiskey in its vein.

You can find Meißner Tremonia  at these distributors

www.straighrazordesigns.com

http://www.meissner-tremonia.de/