May 23, 2007

Review of Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil and Skin Soothe Shave Gel

elemisShaveOil.jpgOK, so yesterday we got all buff and clean with Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash and Elemis Energising Skin Scrub. Today, we're shaving!

Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil
First up, Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil. This is a true shave oil, so for some men this is all they'll need. A surprisingly small amount of oil will cover your face and you'll be good to go. If you've got a light beard or especially resilient skin, this is a great option.

For the rest of us I'd recommend using Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil as a base for either one of their shaving gels. A layer of warm water, a couple drops of oil, followed by shaving gel worked best for me. Elemis recommends four drops. I usually used a few more. Who needs to be frugal when the price is nicks and razor burn?

As with all Elemis products, scent is key. Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil smells like some sort of wood oil. Something you might find in a wood-working shop. Key ingredients are Jojoba, Grapeseed, Meadowsweet, Sweet Almond Oil, Hazelnut Oil, and Rose Hip Seed Oil, but again I wasn't able to identify one predominant aroma. Instead they all just work together.

My one recommendation with this product is open the bottle before you start and your hands are still dry. The bottle's design is really cool, but the little metal nub at the top is hard to open once your hands are wet.

Elemis Smooth Result Shave Oil is $34 for a 35ml bottle. This is same size that comes in the Elemis Universal Traveller. Remember, a little goes a long way.

elemisShaveGel.jpgElemis Skin Soothe Shave Gel
Next up is Elemis Skin Soothe Shave Gel. Every time I shave with opaque creams I'm always so happy to return to a translucent gel. If you've never tried a gel before, and I don't mean a foaming gel, give one a shot. Seeing is believing. (That was kind of a pun.)

Anyway, the instructions for Elemis Skin Soothe Shave Gel say "Squeeze a small amount of Elemis Skin Soothe Shave Gel into palms. Rub the hands together to activate the micro-capsules." At first I didn't pay much attention to this, but then I noticed that within the green/blue gel were these occasional little white balls. Rubbing them in my hands broke them up and dispersed what I'm guessing are the capsules. Huh. I guess is pays to read the instructions. (And I guess I'm a typical man.)

The cool thing about the shaving oil and the gel is after you're done applying both, your hands will be slick with a mixture of each and you can really feel (in your hands) the lubrication that's on your face. Total protective barrier.

Again, aroma is huge. Key ingredients are Jojoba, Witch Hazel, Menthol, Aloe Vera, and Arnica, and here I think the menthol slightly wins out.

Oh, and the shave is great, as expected.

Elemis Skin Soothe Shave Gel is $34 for a 150ml tube. Elemis also has a Ice Cool Foaming Shave Gel for $34. I didn't get a chance to sample this, but I'd recommend the non-foaming gel to start, again because being able to see your skin is a big plus.

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May 22, 2007

Review of Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash and Energising Skin Scrub

elemisCleanse.jpgBack in February we got in the Elemis Universal Traveller kit which, as the name implies, contains travel-size versions of most of the Elemis men's grooming line. We've finally been able to spend a little time with Elemis, so for the next few days we're going to be reviewing these products.

As we mentioned in our original post, Elemis operates some high-end spas in London and Miami Beach, and recently created an online presence with TimeToSpa.com. Their men's line contains the full range or products from shower to shaving, moisturizers to masks. So it should come as no surprise that scent is a key component to each of their products. Each cream or gel has its own unique and distinctive aroma. They've clearly done their best to bring a little bit of the spa home to you.

Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash
Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash is a deep golden color and smells like clean. Clean in a bottle. Key ingredients include Oak Bark, Spearmint, Peppermint, and Milk Protein, although I couldn't discern any of these specifically. Instead you get the deep essence of clean. Imagine it being an aperitif to your shave. That's what Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash is. Oh, and it works too.

Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash is $28 for a 200ml bottle.

elemisScrub.jpgElemis Energising Skin Scrub
Elemis Energising Skin Scrub is the exfoliant in the line of men's grooming products. Here again it's all about the aroma. Key ingredients are Vitamin E, Marine Phytoplankton, Hops, Meadowsweet, Shea Butter, Beeswax, but to me there was this warm, salty, putty-ness to it which I found fabulous.

As with all good exfoliants, Elemis's Scrub has tiny, fine grit which removes dead skin and lifts hair for better shaving. Too coarse grit will scratch your skin, but that's not the case here. Elemis recommends you use the scrub twice a week, and that seemed like enough to me. You exfoliate already by shaving, but that only gets your beard area. Foreheads and noses need some attention too.

Elemis Energising Skin Scrub is $46 for a 75ml bottle.

Tomorrow we shave!

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May 10, 2007

$10 Off Gillette Products at Amazon

gilletteStuff.jpgJust got word of this great deal on Gillette products at Amazon:

Save $10 instantly when you spend $39 or more on Gillette products offered by Amazon.com. Enter code BREEZMAY at checkout. Here's how. Offer expires May 31, 2007.

Yeah, yeah, I know. All you old-school shavers out there are paying 39 cents a blade. But for the rest of us who need our safety razors, saving ten bucks goes a long way. Don't forget you'll get free shipping too.

Via Dealnews.

Russell Neufeld at Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

May 2, 2007

Review of Brave Soldier's Code Blue

codeBlue.gifWelcome to day two of our Brave Soldier review. Yesterday we shaved. Today we after-shave.

Sure, shaving gets all the glory. After all, it's the part with the razor sharp steel. But after-shave is equally important. After you've shaved, your skin is completely vulnerable. It's stripped of its protective fur, softened to ease cutting. You've got to throw some protective lovin' on there or bad things can happen.

Code Blue to the rescue!

Brave Soldier's Code Blue is a blue cooling gel which hits the spot. Highlighted ingredients include:

Witch Hazel, Lidocaine HCL (2.5% ), Tricolosan, Glycerin, [...] Aloe Vera Gel 10X, Tocopherol Acetate (vitamin E), Tea Tree Oil, Menthol, Dimethicone Copolyol, Eucalyptus Oil, Comfrey Extract, Green Tea Extract, Hawaiian Sea Algae, Spirulina, Salicylic Acid (2%), [...] Eucalyptus Oil, Peppermint Oil, Quench T (guarana, mate)

One of my favorite attributes of Code Blue is its thickness. Many after-shaves we've reviewed are a little thin, and I often find myself needing to use a second cream around my lips and under my nose to handle some drier skin. Not so with Code Blue. One coating of its blueness was all I needed.

I liked Code Blue and I recommend it. In the interest of complete disclosure I feel that I should mention that I have a slight allergic reaction to it. Kind of makes my lips numb. Had the same reaction to Pacific Shaving Oil a while back. Still trying to figure out what the common ingredient is. That said I paid a little extra attention when I was applying it and the never had a problem again. This is good stuff, but don't eat it.

Brave Soldier's Code Blue is $18 for a 3.4oz (100mL) bottle.

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May 1, 2007

Review of Brave Soldier's Brave Shave

braveShave.gifA couple months ago we received a tube of Brave Soldier's Brave Shave and a bottle of Details for Men. Today and tomorrow we'll present out review.

History
First a little history. Brave Soldier is a California company with its roots in outdoor life, and treating the inevitable bumps and bruises which come from pushing yourself to the extreme. As we mentioned in our first post when these products came in, Brave Soldier's original product was an Antiseptic Healing Ointment designed for athletes who needed to treat scrapes, cuts, and bruises from their occasional missteps. Since then they've branched out to all forms of men's and women's grooming, including Brave Shave.

Originally formulated for athletes like bicyclists, swimmers and bodybuilders who shave their bodies, Brave Shave’s super-rich formula quickly caught on as the ultimate face shave.

Substance
Key ingredients include "Infusion of yarrow flowers, comfrey root, Jojoba oil, elder flowers, burdock root, chamomile, Aloe gel, vitamin E acetate, Pro-vitamin B-5, glycerin and panthenol."

Brave Shave is a white shaving cream with a slightly lemony scent. The smell is not offensive, but it does verge on antispectic. A reader wrote in a while ago complaining about the scent. I don't think it's that bad, but it's not manly soldier (if that's what you're expecting). It's lemony fresh.

The Shave
Lather up! As it says on the back of the tube, "Apply liberally to moist skin." If you're more of a red-state person, I'd suggest resisting your urge to "apply conservatively to moist skin" and use a little more. Brave Shave is best applied with your hands. It's a little too thick for a shaving brush, so fingers work best. Let it sit for 30-60 seconds on your skin before shaving so the ingredients have time to soften your whiskers.

The shave from Brave Shave is good. Little or no nicks or cuts. If you're worried about getting your razor all gunky with shaving cream then perhaps you'll react negatively to Brave Shave, but honestly if you're letting your razor get all gunky then you're not rinsing it enough. Rinse, stroke, rinse, stroke. Drop and give me ten, soldier!

Brave shave did a decent job of lifting my hairs up so I got a close shave. It's not a clear shaving gel but if you're shaving your entire face each day then there's no worry here. There was a decent amount of lubrication if I wanted to take a second pass, although I often threw a little more on there for a second pass of my chin, which has got some pretty stubborn hairs at times.

Final Assessment
Brave Shave is solidly in the good camp. At $15 for a 6oz. (177 mL) tube it's reasonably priced and a good value for your buck. For further reading there's a short positive customer review on Amazon and several positive customer reviews on Men Essentials.

Russell Neufeld at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 26, 2007

Grand Online Opening - Osrow

osrowgrooming.gif
Just got word from Taylor over at Osrow about the launch of their new online men's grooming site.
We specialize in the highest quality face, skin, body, hair, and shave products geared toward men. We carefully select the product lines we sell, so you can shop with complete confidence.

Shop by category. Shop by ailment. Shop 'til you drop for all I care. For shaving-related items you've got choices from Billy Jealousy, Men-U, and 4VOO. I imagine more will be added shortly.

And finally, in celebration of Osrow's grand opening they're offering 10% off all orders as well as free shipping on orders over $50. Nice!

Russell Neufeld at Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

April 24, 2007

15% Off Billy Jealousy's Fuzzy Logic Shampoo From BuzzSkin

buzzskinBuzzOff.jpg
How's that other hair on your head? Not the stuff you shave (at least, not all of us shave it), but the stuff on the top. You taking care of that?

We actually got an early bottle of BIlly Jealousy's Fuzzy Logic Shampoo way back in May of last year when it came out, and we promptly went right through it. Here's a link to our review which prompted the now legendary "Hey, you smell good." comment from shavingstuff wife.

Want to smell good too? Enter promo code "buzzoff15" when you check out at BuzzSkin and you'll feel good as well. You got until the end of the month.

Russell Neufeld at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 19, 2007

Reader Review of the Personna Matrix3 Razor

matrix3.jpg

ShavingStuff reader Joseph wrote in recently with this positive review of the Matrix3 razor:

Last week I picked up razor, Matrix3 by American Safety Razor, at Wal-Mart for about $4.50 (a handle plus three cartridges or four cartridges). The cartridge contains three titanium coated blades. I only used it once but was very impressed with its performance. It gave probably the closest shave I had lately, more so than the Fusion Power. Of course, it does not vibrate. The handle feels much lighter than the Fusion Power. Try it.

Here's the product features from Amazon:

  • One Razor with Two Refill Cartridges.
  • Not tested on animals.
  • 100% Vegan.

What?!? 100% vegan? Is this razor made of recycled corn husks?

From the American Safety Razor Company website:

The handle is made of brushed steel and rubber with an ergonomic design that provides a superior grip when wet, and the heavier handle improves balance and control.

I think whoever entered the info about this razor on Amazon was smoking something 100% vegan.

Russell Neufeld at Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking

April 18, 2007

Free Fedex Ground Shipping at ZIRH

zirh.gifBetween now and Tuesday April 24th you can get free Fedex ground shipping on ZIRH products when you use the promo code "TWO" at checkout.

May we recommend the Razorburn Relief Kit which includes PREPARE shave oil, SHAVE GEL (jar size), SOOTHE post-shave healer and ERASE, all for only $68. Hmm, actually that probably counts as only one item. OK, throw in a little CLEAN for $14 to eliminate excess dirt and oil.

Oh. Want 15% off? Use promo code 'ShavingStuffZ' as well. Nice!!!

Russell Neufeld at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 10, 2007

Review of Maine Shave All-Natural Intensive Moisturizing Shaving Cream

maineShaveCream.jpgDay two of Maine Shave review week and we're ready to shave with Maine Shave's All-Natural Intensive Moisturizing Shaving Cream.

Ingredients
Maine Shave's shaving cream is all-natural because it doesn't contain any of that poly-zantac-60 or mono-lipitors. Just oils and extracts from shea butter, sea kelp, grapefruit seed, coconut, olive, castor, jojoba, and more. Sounds delicious and nutritious as well.

Smell
I've had a hard time characterizing the smell of this shaving cream. It's manly but not Old Spice. It's soapy but definitely not floral. It verges on old-school without smelling like grandpa. I like the smell, but I can't describe it too well.

Application
It may be a little hard to tell from the picture but Maine Shave's All-Natural Intensive Moisturizing Shaving Cream comes in a short wide jar, perfect for use with a brush. The instructions on the side of the box say

Take a dime size amount and work it into a lather using a shaving brush or your hands and a small amount of water.

I found that the easiest way to shave with this shaving cream was to actually put the brush in the jar. I'd start with some warm water on my face. Then I'd get the tip of a shaving brush slightly wet, and swirl it gently around the wide jar getting a surprisingly small amount of shaving cream on the brush. After that I'd use the brush to apply the shaving cream to my face, which lathered up nicely after working it in for about 30 seconds. If you use this method you will be amazed at how little shaving cream you'll use and still get a uniform covering on your face. In my opinion this shaving cream is meant for a brush. I got a much better shave when using a brush and I used far less shaving cream. If you're not into applying shaving cream with a brush, I don't think you'll get the full benefits of this shaving cream.

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