Silvertip Badger

The 3 day crisis of 2018

Wow rarely do I go 3 days without shaving, when I say rarely I mean never. This happened, and yes I feel the shame; yet the interest of a certain product made me excited to shave.

So earlier this year we had a group razor and soap made, it was a phenomenal deal. The razor made by Riccardo Tonarini, is fully custom 8/8 set in Olive wood with a T10 bolt 1/4 hollow and French tip. The grade steel escapes me, but something like “awesome” comes to mind.

So the 3 day challenge; I was ready to go like a kid on Christmas morning. Soap 70th Anniversary Saponifico Varesino… Check. Totally rocking Alpha Shaving & Brush co.’s T-400 Silvertip Badger brush…check. WSR Custom 2018 LE razor… BIG CHECK. So when your dealing with a razor this large being careful is sage advice. Luckily I made it though the shave with zero effort. Riccardo Tonarini my hat is off to you Prego Mille !

Now I’m as they say BBS smooth, made it through the 3 day crisis of 2018′ and have gained more experience using large blades. This is where I leave all of you for now so as always thank you, and stay smooth !

-Aaron

Love those Almonds !

Today’s shave reminded me of a few general rules of traditional shaving. Firstly a great soap does not have to be ultra expensive. The second is that you need to enjoy every part of your shave, from the soap to the method of hair removal. Lastly your shave should be memorable !

Today’s shave hit every one of those three simple criteria. Natura Essenziale alla Mandorla is a modest Italian soft soap that cost around €5 and has a wonderful sweet almond aroma, and ample glide and cushion. This is also a vegetable based soap.

I enjoyed literally every moment of today’s shave, from the prep using hot towels infused with almond essential oil to my 6/8 Thiers-Issard Bison Straight razor, to my post shave of Chella Cool by Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements. I took my time, and overall I’d say the experience lasted one and a half hours.

Finally yes it was memorable on many levels. The soap reminded me of my friendship with a great friend I proudly call my brother. About a half hour before I was able to add another wonderful author to our page, and to the shave itself the individual components of soap, brush, razor and post shave delivered a close, no super close shave that made me proud that I stuck with using a proven soap, a freshly honed razor, and a vigorous aftershave that left my face feeling great, and smelling like I was going to conquer the world.

What I suppose I am getting at, is make your personal shave count. The art of traditional shaving is so much more than one part, but the sum of all the parts combined. On this wonderful Saturday I wish you all happy shaves, and as always stay smooth.

Orange 🍊 & Amber Delight

I look forward to different days of the week; I usually have a theme for the day. Today happens to be Thursday so it’s from a “Tube”. Tubes ROCK ! They are usually compact, slick, and easy to travel with, compared to their rigid tub counterparts.

Today was going to be great as I had chose Musgo Real “Orange Amber”. This is a great transition scent as we move between summertime, and autumn. So let’s get a closer look at this classic. Musgo Real was originally made in 1920 by the Portuguese Musgo Real co. the clock has turned, and the Claus Porto Co founded in 1887, acquired Musgo Real and is now formulated by Ach. Brito

Appearance: 5/5

Musgo Real no.1 Orange Amber is a 100ml tube of shave cream. The tube utilizes a aluminum based orange packaging, that seems to be of a little thicker wall. The Orange is bold with the Musgo Real logo; a crown 👑 and a very utilitarian no.1 Orange Amber embossment. Simple and to the point making this a humble visual to the cream inside. This is a higher end cream despite its packaging and falls into that price point of $22 for 100ml or, 3.5 ounces.

Performance: 4/5

This mini review can be finished in two words; Lanolin and Glycerin. This is the base of this top shelf cream. This allows the cream to have amazing glide, as well as being moisturizing, and to leave your face feeling not only healthy, but smooth as we say a baby’s bottom. The only detraction in my experience is the moderate lather it produces; many would argue this is not an issue, but I like a little thicker lather. Brush used: Envy Shave custom Silver tip Badger.

Fragrance: 5/5

This is a subjective topic as always YMMV, and one person wonderful is another’s awful (Lilac Vegetal for instance). The aroma wafted up to me as I lathered the cream with my brush. A combination of orange and musk along with a pronounced Amber, benzoin smell. I don’t usually pick up on the aroma that quickly, but this was well formulated.

Post Shave: 5/5

Wonderful as the lanolin has done its job perfectly. My face felt like a dream with a BBS outcome, but no redness or, irritation anywhere after 3 passes, and a mild touch up. I really debated if a post shave splash or, balm was needed. I ended up using Fine Accoutrements Italian Citrus, with a drop of Aqua Velva musk.

I hope this little overview of Musgo Real’s no.1 Orange Amber cream in the tube was somewhat helpful. I purchased this cream from Straight Razor Designs Musgo Real Orange Amber Happy shaves my friends, and stay smooth.

  • My daily driver- SS 303Phoenix Bomb Tip handle with a Merkur 41C OC
  • Blade: Gillette Silver Blue (1)
  • Soap: Musgo Real no.1 Orange Amber
  • Brush: Custom Envy Shave Silver tip Badger
  • Post Shave: Fine Accoutrements Italian Citrus & Aqua Velva Musk
  • Fragrance: Bvlgari Aqua Amara

A nice, lightweight, travel setup

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All in all a great shave and not much chit to carry. Next time you travel – try going light!

Hi All – my first post and what better way to do it than a SOTD. I travel a lot in my line of work and I am prone to “over-carrying” shave gear. I have been known to take 5-6 straights, 2-3 soaps, 2+ aftershaves and so on – not to mention lather bowls and strops.

So this time… – I set myself up with a nice, lightweight, setup:

Details
Soap Arko Stick
Brush My ΑΛΦΑ [Alpha} T-400 shaving brush with a nice 24mm Silver Tip knot
Razor Merkur Futur
Blade Feather on shave #2
AS Joe Malone Sage Wood & Sea Salt
Bowl Face lathered!!

The shave was superb – I soaked the brush for about a minute in cool water and took that time to wet the Arko stick and rub a nice layer all over my face. I then face lathered for about 4 minutes – what a lather guys!!! I tell you all – Arko is THE BOMB – it is cheap, slick and whips up a nice lather in no time at all. Some folks hate the smell but to me it just smells like soap – fresh with a hint of citrus.

Yes – look at the gel-tips!! If you want a brush like this one then give me a shout.

The Shave

A 3-pass – pass 1 WTG on setting #4. Pass 2 ATG on setting #4. Pass 3 ATG on setting #1

All in all a great shave and not much chit to carry. Next time you travel – try going light!

 

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SOTD: 7/27/2018 Octavia Noir

Today’s shave was one of those shaves you didn’t expect, but you were damn happy afterwards. I love Gingers Garden soaps, and Irena couldn’t be a better person or, for that matter soap maker. Today I used for the first time Octavia Noir that was a Glycerin soap. That said a lot of traditional shavers, have been taught Glycerin based soaps don’t shave as well as tallow or, butter based soaps. In this case Irena knows what she is doing, the lather that ensued was not only dense, and protective, but had a wonderful aroma of deep amber and darker floral scents, while still being very approachable in these warmer months. Octavia Noir to say the least is a winner by a long shot. I used a vintage 1909 Gillette ABC Pocket Edition scroll razor, with a Wilkinson Sword by Gillette blade, as well as my favorite brush my 2016 WSR group brush with an ultra premium silver tip badger knot, by Envy Shave. This made quick work of my stubble, which always makes me happy. The glide, from the soap made for a simple true BBS shave. I finished off with not an exact match to the soap, but a favorite Floid Menthalado Vigoroso. When it’s 95 degrees out; this is the after shave you want to cool you down. To that I wish you all happy shaves, and a wonderful weekend. Here is a link to Ginger Garden which I highly recommend for any products she offers. Gingers Garden

SOTD: June 6th, 2015 “Saturday Night Lime”

What’s there to say about today’s shave ? Not a whole lot for once ! It was comfortable, and it removed hair 🙂 if you have never used Castle Forbes creams I would strongly recommend them, as they are formulated for ultimate glide and for a wonderful post shave feel due to the lanolin in the cream itself. The Case Red Imp delivered the goods; no two ways about that, aside from a aggressive spike point the razor is awesome, rescaled I guess with what I’d call a red coral type of scale and custom fit for the razor. Lastly Raymond Bukaty makes an amazing brush ! his knot is superb and craftsmanship cannot be denied. All said todays shave was excellent and very enjoyable. Shave on everyone and enjoy the beautiful day, and weekend ! – Aaron

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  • Pre: Hot shower with Nivea face scrub
  • Cream: Castle Forbes Lime
  • Brush: Bukaty custom Silver Tip badger
  • Razor: Case “Red Imp” 6/8 red coral scale
  • Lather type: Bowl
  • Moustache type: Handlebar
  • Wax and Pomade: Pinaud black & Murray’s SE “Vintage”
  • After Shave: Captain’s Choice Lime
  • Balm: Soap Commander “Respect”
  • Fragrance: Lacoste L12.12 Blanc

SOTD: May 4th, 2015 “SJOL Cedarwood Clary Sage”

Happy Monday everyone ! Unlike many things in this world straight razors; are one of those things, when properly cared for get better with age. I’d add wooden stringed instruments, and paintings to that list as well. There is just something to the feel of a vintage straight razor that is nearly 100 years old, and delivers a close and comfortable shave. The old time construction just lasts and they had pride in their craft; My Vintage Boker 1056 is no exception.

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Our Vendor of the month St. James of London is another one of those products that takes pride in their craft since 1953 ! A Creighton’s made brand, this cream whilst brushless; when you use a brush excels and even IMHO creates an exceptional lather that left me with a ample cushion and tons of glide. I find the aroma unique as it is called Cedarwood and Clary Sage; which is very obvious, but there is a citrus note that really brightens things up, as well as a grounding fragrance that is masculine and exudes confidence.

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Great shave today, Enjoy your days all, and of course Shave On ! – Aaron

  • Pre: Clarisonic Aria with deep pore brush and cleanser
  • Prep: Hot Shower with Jack Black’s “Face Buff” fine grit face scrub
  • Cream: St. James of London “Cedarwood & Clary Sage”
  • Brush: Marting custom silver tip badger
  • Razor: Vintage Boker 1056 straight razor
  • Lather type: Scuttle
  • Moustache type: Handlebar
  • Wax & Pomade: PPF original & Murray’s Xtra Heavy
  • Post Shave: Cold water rinse
  • After Shave: Ogallala bay rum, sage, and cedar (great compliment to the cream)
  • Balm: Aveeno fragrance free after shave lotion
  • Fragrance: L’Occitane Bavx

SOTD: May 1st, 2015 “St. James of London”

Let the Fun Begin ! SOTD: May 1st, 2015

Pre: Hot Shower with Clarisonic Aria with Deep Pore head and cleanser
Cream: St. James of London “Black Pepper & Lime”
Brush: Custom Raymond Bukaty​ silvertip brush
Razor: RazoRock Stealth V3
Blade: Gillette 7 O’clock black Super Platinum (4)
Lather: Direct face lather
Moustache type: Handlebar
Wax & Pomade: Proraso moustache wax & Reuzel Pink Heavy Hold
Post shave: Cold water rinse
After Shave: Captain’s Choice “Lime”
Balm/Other: St. James of London “Black Pepper & Lime” gel
Fragrance: Penhaligon’s Blenheim Bouquet (Perfect Pairing !)

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Such a GREAT shave today ! of course there will be full reviews of ALL (SJOL) creams and even pomade this month, but in a few words, The “Black Pepper and Lime” cream was like being in the Caribbean ! So many great memories from this scent; not to mention slick as can be;  Shave on everyone

SOTD: January 24th, 2015 a week of Thiers-Issard

It’s snowing outside and cold as can be, but who really cares, I have enough to keep me busy, and my shave today started my day off absolutely on the right track ! My new video equipment came today so time to learn to use it as well so future posts will have more video real time reviews. But for now here is a little SOTD to keep things up to date.

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I have been rotating my favorite straight razors this week Thiers-Issard as I have four so it was a nice transition to some newer ones like the 6/8 Bison Red Stamina ! What an amazing shaver this is ! perfectly honed, and flawless in balance, and hand feel.

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I’ve also been rocking with Mitchell’s Wool Fat all week as well, as it’s about on it’s last leg, and I’m trying to use it up. I decided to Uber-Lather mixing MWF, Musgo Oakmoss cream, and finally some glycerin. This was a SLICK shave ! really thick lather as you can see in the photo’s, and all whipped up with a Nathan Clark custom silvertip on its maiden voyage as I recently bought a 2-band and a silvertip brush from Nathan. Perfect performance ! I could not be happier with the performance, first use and great lather out the gate, I can’t wait to see how this performs after a dozen or so uses.

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Finished it all off classic ! some alum, and Aqua Velva Ice Blue ! The MWF was definitely dominant and I find the Musgo Oakmoss there but very tolerant with most other scents, and took a back seat to the Mitchell’s. Finally as I had to take care of the snow situation from last night I used some Aveeno Naturals lotion. The Aveeno lotion is quite thick and goes on pretty thick as well, but absorbs easily once it reaches body temperature it seems.

Bottom line great Saturday shave and great gear ! I love shaving with these Thiers-Issard razors so needless to say I have had a great week, but truth told I must confess I think today’s Bison Red Stamina in 6/8 is maybe my favorite TI in my den. Happy shoveling to everyone in the northeast with me, and more so happy shaving !!!! – Shave on everyone -Aaron

  • Pre: Hot shower with Musgo Glyce pre shave soap
  • Prep: Glycerin
  • Soap: Mitchell’s Wool Fat
  • Cream: Musgo Real “Oakmoss”
  • Brush: Nathan Clark 24mm silvertip badger brush
  • Razor: Thiers-Issard 6/8  “Bison” Red Stamina
  • Lather type: Scuttle
  • Moustache type: English
  • Post Shave: Cold water rinse, Alum, and A. Logistics IGHT
  • After Shave: Aqua Velva “Ice Blue”
  • Lotion: Aveeno naturals lotion
  • Fragrance: British Stirling H.I.M. Reserve

SOTD: October 13th ,2014 “Menthol Monday”

Happy Columbus day everyone ! I had to work, but I hope everyone that had off had a great day. So today is the infamous “Menthol Monday”, and I must say while a great shave; I was utterly disappointed in the menthol aspect. I have learned today a few things …like what not to do again. So this will be a very short post, but hopefully informative none the less.

I decided with all my talk about lather types lately today was an Uber-Lather day or, if you did not read yesterdays posts a combination of a hard soap, cream(s), and liquid glycerin. I went overboard today, I am trying to hold onto the summer. I used Castle Forbes “Lime” which was the dominant scent, I rarely use but thought it was supposed to be cold as it listed menthol, an Indian brand called Dettol cool, and finally for the soap Mitchell’s wool Fat. I added about 5 drops of glycerin. This was an amazing lather that I will give it.. super slick and very protective and if you like lime this was about as good as it gets especially with the added glycerin it brought the lather itself to another level . What made me unhappy was that I used either too many soaps and creams or, Dettol cool is not really all that cool at all. on a scale of 1-10; Ten being the coldest this was maybe a 2. I used my Marting custom silvertip which performed exceptionally well, and for that zero complaints. Like I said great lather and a great shave, but nowhere near a Menthol Monday shave.

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I also decided to kick the week off strong using my favorite Stainless Steel razor, the Above the Tie “Atlas” and I used the R head assembly which is the closed comb design and similar in aggression to a Edwin Jagger DE89 or Muhle R89. Great razor from the handle knurling to the feel and how flexible, and easy it is to use. this razor is always in perfect alignment and encloses the entire blade. What make the ATT even better to me is it is all handmade right here in the USA in Tennessee by skilled artisans ! this is truly an artisan handcrafted piece of mastered engineering in the world of razors. Now here is the second wow moment I am still using that Voskhod now on shave 11, and still no tugging. Not even a weeper or, the slightest irritation or, reddening of my skin.

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Finally I have finished this great yet non-mentholated shave so I did what I could. Cold water rinse, Shavex alum. I then reached for the Proraso splash ! it has menthol and while only a little cold and very short lived it was enough for me… I also used 2 parts Captain’s choice “Lime” after shave. After a nice dry down I added Truefitt & Hills “Trafalgar” balm which has a very lime like aroma and married up to today’s shave perfectly.

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Well all I can say is great shave and super close, but I failed all of you for it being a Menthol Monday, but not for  lack of desire, it just kind of turned out that way. I hope you all had great shaves and way colder than mine. – Aaron

  • Pre: Hot shower w/ Clinique facial wash
  • Prep: None
  • Cream(s): Castle Forbes “Lime” and Dettol “Cool”
  • Soap: Mitchells Wool Fat
  • Brush: Marting custom silvertip
  • Razor: Above the Tie “Atlas” w/R style closed comb head
  • Blade: Voskhod (11)
  • Lather type: Bowl
  • Moustache type: Handlebar
  • Wax and Pomade: Joe Grooming compound wax and Murray’s Superior Pomade (PB)
  • Post shave: Cold water rinse, Shavex alum
  • After shave: Proraso and Captain’s Choice “Lime”
  • Balm: Truefitt & Hill “Trafalgar”