Sunday, June 5, 2022

Le Grand Bain Shaving Cream ... from Sheraton?

June 05, 2022 0

I remember when the complementary hotel shampoo would dry out your hair (not that I have that concern any more) or the body lotion was so perfumy and would actually dry out your hands.  Body wash wasn’t even part of the mix.   Many hotels over the years have gotten much better over the years and I’ve come to expect better smelling and performing products.  For the most part they are.  I’ve only seen complementary shaving cream a few times and I wasn’t sure what to expect.  But, I hate to say it, my expectations were low.  

Shave of the day with the Sheraton Le Grand Bain Shave Cream

One instance was when we at a Sheraton.  I was surprised to see they had a tube of shaving cream on the counter.  The 20 ml tube read: le grand bain Citron + Vetiver.  Hmm … sounds intriguing.
I dispensed small amount of cream onto my brush. First impression was that I liked the scent.  The citron and vetiver combination made for a fresh, masculine, citrus combination.  It was rather tame.  The scent wasn’t so overpowering where it just lingered in the air.  I needed to force a little air out of the tube to smell it.  Next, I noticed the cream had a glossy white appearance; it reminded me of the Derby shave creams in a tube.  

Dispensing some Le Grand Bain cream onto my brush.

I started to lather.  To my surprise it started to develop that familiar, smooth, lather that other well performing shave creams yield.  After applying I waited a few moments just to see if it would thin.  I was pleased that it did not.  

I used my fairly aggressive Muhle R102 razor with a Dorco ST300 blade.  I found that the lather of the le grand bain shave cream had a nice slickness and did a good job protecting my skin.  It effortlessly washed away; didn’t leave me feeling like my face was dried out; or that I was in a cologne showroom.  All in all, a pleasant experience.  

Happy that I got a nice lather with this shave cream

Surprisingly, this delightful shaving cream isn’t available on the Sheraton Store site.  Though numerous listings on Walmart.com and eBay for it.  Personally, I wouldn’t pay the prices that some sellers are asking.  I could only hope that the Sheraton Store will start listing it (at a reasonable price of course) for wet shavers to try.  I suppose, until then, I guess I have an excuse to lean towards staying at a Sheraton.


Sunday, January 9, 2022

The Lilac Vegetal Experience

January 09, 2022 0

A number of reviews have been written about the Pinaud Clubman Lilac Vegetal.  Many of these echo the same thing:  it is a popular aftershave fragrance but people seem to either love it or hate it.  A while ago I tried it  one time, didn’t like it, and put it away.  I fell into the “hate it” camp.  After some time, I decided to give it a try again.  This time I would give it a chance.  I would power through that initial unpleasantness, try it for a week, and see if the scent grows on me.  I figured this is popular for a reason.  Unfortunately, I didn’t change my mind.

Lilac Vegetal 6 oz bottle.  Also available in a 1.7 oz bottle and 12.5 oz bottle.


I remember Lilac Vegetal being mentioned in the 1979 movie The Jerk.   So, I knew it had to be around since the late 1970s.  After a little Googling and Bing-ing, I discovered that Vegetal Lilac has been around since the late 1870s.  It was initially made with ingredients such as ambergris and lilac; but is now being produced from artificial ingredients due to difficulties in procuring these natural ingredients[1]. 

Lilac Vegetal Makes an appearance in "The Jerk"

I really like the regular Clubman aftershave as well as their Bay Rum splash.  Despite its popularity, Lilac Vegetal was one that I couldn’t get used to.   On paper, I found that (for me at least) there are more positives than negatives with this aftershave.  

My Positives:

  • Scent doesn’t linger and is not extremely powerful:  My wife says she has to be very close to smell it.
  • The bracing sting feeling of an aftershave splash was satisfying.
  • Doesn’t leave my face feeling oily or that there’s some sort of residue coating me.
  • Fairly inexpensive.
  • Available from many places.  Can find it in many grocery stores and on Amazon.

My Negatives:

  • Did not find scent appealing:  Some say it smells like cat pee.  For me, it immediately reminded me of some sort of public restroom disinfectant.
  • Smells different in the bottle than after applied:  This is likely due to body chemistry but this was a downside for me.  Even though wife isn’t a fan of this scent, she actually liked the smell better from the bottle than on me.
  • Scent came back when exercising: As I started to sweat, that distinct Lilac Vegetal aroma started to appear. Same thing happens when I wear the traditional Clubman. But with Lilac Vegetal, it wasn’t appealing.

One of my Shaves of the Day with Lilac Vegetal

 

At the end of the day, the weight of negatives supersedes the positives.   I could see why someone would like this, especially if their body chemistry mixes well with it.  For me, I can’t say that I’m in the Fan-of-Lilac-Vegetal camp.

 

 

References:

[1] Schneider, Daniel B. (1997, Feb 16) "F.Y.I."  nytimes.com.  Accessed Dec 18, 2021

Saturday, November 13, 2021

Parker Safety Razor Sandalwood Shaving Soap in Travel Container

November 13, 2021 0

Parker Shaving’s Sandalwood Sheabutter shave soap is one that I’ve used off and on for quite some time but just getting around to doing a review.   Admittedly it’s not one that I use often.  That is not due to performance or smell.  I just really like the travel sized container and tend to reserve it for when I have to fly as it doesn’t take up a heck of a lot of space in my dopp.  Though, I may reach for it on occasion while at home.

Parker Shave Soap on a trip with me to Hawaii

The label notes Sandalwood Sheabutter.  However, this doesn’t smell like other sandalwood fragrances I have previously smelled.   I can’t pinpoint what the fragrance is.  But, the soap smells sweet and almost floral.  My wife’s first impressions were of lilac, lily of the valley, and cut grass.  It is not an appalling scent by any stretch; just not what I would necessarily reach for if I was in a mood for an all sandalwood themed shave.

 

One of my Shave Of the Day photos ... I think this was in Florida

While I haven’t taken it to a wide range of places, I’ve used the soap in California, Hawaii, Florida, New York, and Pennsylvania.  Each time, I found the soap pretty easy to lather.  I also found to be slick, protective, and the scent washed away during that post shave rinse.  All of this made for a positive shave experience both at home and away.

 

I easily get a slick, protective lather with this soap.

Parker Safety Razor’s Sandalwood Sheabutter Luxury Shave Bar is available in a 100 gram bar as well as the travel sized 50 gram container.   It looks like the clear travel container that I use may no longer be available.  I will have to say that I do like the black container that is pictured on many other sites.   I am torn which I prefer. 

 

A home SOTD with the Parker Shave Soap

 

Friday, June 25, 2021

Simpson’s Sandalwood Shaving Cream

June 25, 2021 0

 

SOTD with the Simpsons Sandalwood Luxury Shave Cream

The Simpson’s name in wet shaving is probably more associated with brushes than with shaving cream.    In 2012 the company released the Simpsons Luxury Shaving Cream to very positive reviews.   I have a number of tins in my shaving cream supply and have used them on a number of occasions.
The Sandalwood scented variety of the Simpsons Luxury Shaving Cream was packaged in 4.2 oz tin that measures about 3.25 inches in diameter and about 1.5 inches high.   So it’s not as bulky as a Taylor of Old Bond Street or Proraso shave cream bowl (not that those containers are super bulky).  
 

The tin size in relation to a couple of other containers

This is a very soft shaving cream and it reminded me a bit of the Every Man Jack Cedarwood Shave Cream.  Unlike the EMJ cream, I found that I didn’t need a lot of cream to build a decent lather.  Applying a small amount to the brush that was about the size of a lima bean was sufficient and I got a rich and protective lather.  
   

I did like the lather I got from this shaving cream

Scent-wise, the Simpsons Sandawood smells what I can only describe as a lightly herbal sandalwood.  My wife said it smelled like an herbal scented baby powder.   It wasn’t as “sweet” smelling as the Game Day Men’s  or “spicy” as Taylor Of Old Bond St. Sandalwood or even “sweet-spicy” as the Proraso sandalwood.  The scent of the Simpsons Sandalwood is very appealing and, overall, very pleasant without being overpowering.  I felt it washed away cleanly without leaving a lingering scent.
 

The shaving cream in the tin

It guess it’s been a while since I’ve broken this out as Simpsons appears to be moving from the shaving cream tins to a plastic tub.  I have yet to try it, but I would imagine the scent and formulation is likely the same. As of this writing, it looks as if the tin is still available from some retailers (like Smallflower
So I could supplies the tins drying up eventually.


Tuesday, April 6, 2021

A Closer Look at The Edwin Jagger DE86RC14bl Safety Razor

April 06, 2021 0

The Edwin Jagger DE86RC14bl double edge razor debuted back in 2014 and have had it in the routine since then.  It is a three piece, closed comb/safety bar razor and features a rubber coated handle for an improved grip.  The handle measures roughly 3.375 inches. The whole razor measures about 3.75 inches from end to end and weighs 2.7 oz according to our scale.

The DE86RC14bl (right) measured the same as the DE89.

To compare it to another popular razor in the Edwin Jagger family, the DE89 measured and weighed same as the DE86RC14bl.  As a side note, in a previous post we measured a weight of 2.6 oz for the DE89.  I measured it with the same scale but in a different room and would attribute the small weight difference to that.  I have the DE89 and the Dreadnought Spartan Razor and use them from time to time.  Because of the similar dimensions, weight, and aggressiveness of shave to the DE89 and the Spartan, the DE86RC14bl feels very familiar in the hands.

The similar weights of the DE89 (right) and the DE86RC14bl


Like the other Edwin Jagger razors I’ve tried, the DE86RC14bl is what many would describe as a mild shave.  As a result, it is often touted as a good razor for the beginner.   Personally, I also like Edwin Jagger razors for when I try out a new blade.  The mild shave allows me to ease into the aggressiveness of a blade by trying a few shaves with a mild razor and gradually try the blade with aggressive razors.  I do like the black rubber coated handle and find that it helps my grip a bit with wet or even soapy hands.  Still, I try to remain in the practice of rinsing the soap off my hands because the last thing I want to do risk having it slip and cutting my face or head. 


One of my Shaves of the Day when I used the DE86RC14bl with a 7AM blade

Overall, I find that the Edwin Jagger DE86RC14bl is just a nice razor to have in the collection.