July 2, 2007

June 2007 Wrap Up for Shaving Stuff

Time for another look back at the month .

Electric Razors
Big month for electric razors. We received a Philips Norelco Arcitec ahead of its July 8th release and had a chance to try it out. Here are our initial thoughts. Gizmodo posted their early thoughts on the Braun Pulsonic. And in the nether region the Hair eRazor seeks to unseat the dominant Seiko Clean Cut. (Hair eRazor - get it? Took me a minute.)

We reviewed Bold For Men this month - a shaving gel which goes on dry skin, an interesting alternative for those who hate the mess of shaving cream. Currently up in the ShavingStuff studios is Gentlemen's Refinery. Lots of buzz over the dailies. This one looks to be a summer blockbuster.

This Just In
We received a lot of new products to review this month. We've already mentioned the Philips Norelco Arcitec, and in the shaving supplies department we received products from Proraso, Musgo Real, and Bump Patrol. Also in were the award-winning Lip Balm and Clay Pomade from Baxter of California.

Full slate of celebrities this month. We kicked it all off with Alberto Gonzalez (needs to save face), then went to Stan Lee (needs to save Mary Jane), checked in with Eddie Murphy (needs to save for alimony), homered with Kevin Youkilis (needs to save the game), and rounded things out with Steve Jobs (needs to send me an iPhone).

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June 18, 2007

The Trac LXXVI Razor from Mad Magazine

PL_72_shave_2.jpgBack when the 5-bladed Gillette Fusion came out a bunch of readers wrote in about the Onion's prescient spoof article about a ridiculous sounding 5-bladed razor. Recently ShavingStuff reader Crosius wrote in about an earlier piece from seminal comedy rag Mad Magazine (and presented by Wired). Seems Al Jaffee and his gang of misfits dreamed up the Trac LXXVI (that's 76 for all you roman numeral fans) razor years before:

Seventy-six cutting edges … wrap around an entire face and shave it close and clean in two or three effortless moves.

That was in response to the Schick Quattro, which at the time had an outlandish 4 blades.

For the M3Power, the first vibrating power razor from Gillette, Mad came up with a

battery-powered shaver produces "a high-frequency electromagnetic ray [that] instantly withers hairs and reduces them to ash."

I'm still waiting for the laser treatment which guilts hair follicles into lying dormant in therapy until a special psychological cream is applied to overcome their performance anxiety.

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May 31, 2007

May 2007 Wrap Up for Shaving Stuff

Time to close the books on May 2007 with this look back on the month.

Two sets of reviews this month. The first covered Brave Soldier shaving products - specifically Brave Soldier's Brave Shave and Brave Soldier's Code Blue. The second covered a good part of the Elemis suite - specifically Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash and Energising Skin Scrub, Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil and Skin Soothe Shave Gel, and Elemis Post Shave Recovery Mask and S.O.S. Survival Cream.

We saw several products this month worth mentioning related to men's grooming: MenScience TiO2 Sunblock, Derek Jeter shaving products, the mysterious Japanese Hyper "X" (and the follow up), and the probable launch of the upcoming Braun Pulsonic. (Still haven't been able to confirm that one.)

Literature and Art
Leisure Guy's book Leisureguy's Guide to Gourmet Shaving: Shaving Made Enjoyable came out this book. It rocks, and not just because ShavingStuff gets a mention. Learn all about the ancient art of wet-shaving, and maybe a new word or two. Pogonology, anyone? And on the other side of the literature spectrum, a shaving-related cartoon from The New Yorker

Currently up in the ShavingStuff shaving studios is Bold for Men, a different kind of shaving lotion in that you don't use any water. Should have the review within a week or two. Stay tuned.

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May 9, 2007

Definition: Pogonology

clarkLane.jpgSo if you clicked over to LeisureGuy's book yesterday you might have noticed a strange word in the publisher's name - Pogonotomy. I have to admit that I had never heard of this word before, but given LeisureGuy's incredible vocabulary, I figured it must be something shaving-related. So I started googling around.

From LeisureGuy:

pogonotrophy (po-guh-NAW-truh-fee) noun
The growing of a beard.
[From Greek pogon (beard) + -trophy (nourishment, growth).]

And some variations:

Pogonic: of or pertaining to a beard
Pogonologist: a writer on beards
Pogonology: a treatise on beards
Pogonotomy: to cutting of the beard
Pogonotrophy: cultivation of the beard, beard growing

And pictured to the right is the somewhat scary Clark Lane from whose site those I found those variations. Click on through if you want to see Clark pogonotomize his beard. Warning. Clark is... well... he's got a quote on his site from Anna Julia Cooper which I think accurately sums up his look:

a great burly six feet of masculinity with ...sloping shoulders and unkempt beard

Err... well put Anna.

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April 30, 2007

April 2007 Wrap Up for Shaving Stuff

April brought crazy weather here in the Northeast. Tons of rain. Some unseasonably hot days. Can't tell if it's going to be a shorts or wool pants. One thing I do know - gotta shave.

This month featured Maine Shave's Four Step Shaving Ritual:
1) Maine Shave Natural Gentle Daily Facial Cleanser
2) Maine Shave All-Natural Intensive Moisturizing Shaving Cream
3) Maine Shave Natural Facial Toner
4) Maine Shave Natural Gentle Daily Facial Moisturizer.
Even though I've moved on to testing Brave Soldier products, I'm still occasionally dipping back into the Maine Shave cache. Love the toner. So frivolous. So wonderful.

We also had a quick review of the Vidal Sassoon Nose Trimmer which totally rocks, and a reader review of the Personna Matrix3 Razor from ShavingStuff reader Joseph.

Bunch of special deals from ZIRH, BuzzSkin, and others (which sadly have expired). We also welcome Osrow to the world of online men's grooming e-tailers.

In honor of all the presidential happenings these days we had a presidential themed celebrity facial hair Friday which I thought was near impossible. Turns our ShavingStuff readers are also history buffs. We also honored the acceptibly be-mustached Kurt Vonnegut and the unacceptably (and finally) de-mustached Sean Penn.

May's shaping up to be an interesting month. Already on tap are new products from MenScience and a very cryptic email from Braun. Also stay tuned for our review of Brave Soldier products which starts tomorrow.

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April 25, 2007

The Libertarian View on Shaving

lib_shaving_cream.gifHere's an interesting article I stumbled across recently by Jeffrey A. Tucker entitled The Shaving Cream Racket. In it Mr. Tucker makes the case that the greatest hoax perpetrated on man is making us believe we actually need shaving cream. The basic argument is this - shaving cream weakens our face, thus creating a market for all the post-shave/after-shave healing products which we need for nicks, cuts, and redness.

I suppose it's a decent argument, however I think Mr. Tucker is starting from a bad premise. Namely, bad shaving cream. That stuff you buy in the aerosol can at the local drug store for $1.99 ain't going to cut it. In fact, it's going to cut you. There are some major differences in the way the shaving creams we've tested for this site set up your whiskers for shaving. Some lubricate well. Some help stand your beard hairs up. Some do all that and more.

In my (humble) opinion, Mr. Tucker starts to loose his credibility with this sentence:

There are many thing that are true – the state is a parasite on society, private property would solve most social problems, rock music is tedious and stupid – but are nonetheless not generally known or applied.

Hmm... I appreciate opposing views, but it sounds like you've got a little anger you need to deal with. I suggest a good shave.

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April 5, 2007

Definition: Yak Shaving

yak.jpgMain Entry: Yak Shaving
Pronunciation: 'yak 'shA-vi[ng]
Function: Impressing people with obscure references
Usage (from Wikipedia):

Yak shaving is a neologism which describes the act of performing seemingly unrelated and often annoying tasks which stand in the way of an ultimate goal. Often these tasks stack up on each other, where one task becomes impossible due to some obstacle, which leads to another unrelated task, yet another obstacle, and so on.

10 extra credit points for using it in a sentence. 20 extra credit points for actually shaving a yak.

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March 30, 2007

March 2007 Wrap Up for Shaving Stuff

March came in like a lion, shaved, and looked damn good, if I don't say so myself.

Two reviews this month - John Allan's shaving products and the Nashville Knife Shop. John Allan's products were surprisingly good, overcoming my initial assumption that these would be an after-thought to a storefront spa. Not so. Top shelf shaving cream and after-shave balm. The Nashville Knife Shop has some great shaving supplies for the old-school shaver - brushes, stands, real razors, and yes - knives. For those looking to take their first step into this world I highly recommend a badger-hair brush. The Nashville Knife Shop has several high-quality choices at reasonable prices.

Coming Up
Our friends over at Details for Men sent us an assortment of products from The Gentlemen's Refinery, including their entire four-step shaving regimen plus eye cream. Currently in the Shaving Stuff test studios were lathering up with Maine Shave. Look for reviews of both of these products in the upcoming weeks.

This story keeps getting weirder and weirder. Brad Delp, former lead singer of Boston, was mediator to 30 years of feuding band-mates, which in the end caused him to take his own life. And then his friends aren't invited to his funeral. I prescribe a pair of headphones and an iPod loaded up with "Peace of Mind". Other celebs included the be-mustached Henry Waxman, the de-coiffed Kevin Federline, and the clean-shaven Martin Scorsese.

Hi ZIRH girls. Whatcha doing later? Wanna come over and Pimp My Shave? I'll let you play with my Shaving in the Tub set.

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March 27, 2007

Pimp My Shave from King of Shaves

It's about time someone took shaving to the street. King of Shaves is kicking it old-school with Pimp My Shave, a website a la Am I Hot or Not, but for the pimpin' shaving underground.
If you look in the mirror after a fresh shave and think to yourself, “I should be getting paid to look this good!” just remember that you can and you should! Whip out the digital, snap a shot, and click here to upload your images. Let us be the judge whilst soliciting the jeers of haters nationwide. Please note that King of Shaves urges those haters to stop hating, and start cooperating by also submitting their photos.

Judging by the photos which are up there now, you've got plenty of chances to win. Um hello? Where's the guy who's installed a PSP is his beard? I saw them put a Playstation in an old VW Bug on Pimp My Ride so I know it can be done.

Prizes include $100 vouchers to shave.com, and the mac daddy of pimpin' shaves gets a trip for two to New York, hotel, Knicks tickets and "an 'unwinding session' at the famous Paul Molé Barber Shop." You may need to provide your own satin suit, diamond tipped cane, and grill.

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March 15, 2007

Fun Facts From Gillette

copperWire.jpgPart of the Gillette Phantom Fusion Power press kit included a page of tips for the best shave ever. We've gone over most these before - shave after you shower, shave with the grain, rinse afterwards with cool water - but there was an interesting little piece of trivia which I thought was worth sharing:

Although beard hair is as tough as copper wire, applying warm water causes hair to expand, making it softer and easier to cut. The force required to cut beard hair is reduced by almost 70 percent after a two-minute application of warm water.

So, still shaving before you shower? Try taking your razor to some speaker wire and see how well it does.

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