Red and Green…A Slick Combo

proraso red may 21 2013

The face had a few days rest and the soap for this week is going to be Proraso’s Red sandalwood with shea butter cream.  An amazing product, in the same vein as it’s brother, Green with Menthol and Eucalyptus that I used last week.  For today, everything (practically) was Italian, with the Green preshave pasty cream as prep and the Green aftershave.

The razor was the aggressive but effective Fatip Grande with a Super Blue blade, and the brush was the wonderful Omega badger.

Proraso Red is loaded with shea butter and other oils, which results in lots of thickness and moisture.   With the affordability of the tube (this one was only $7 for 150ml!), there was no tendency to skimp on the amount.  And while it did require a little effort to whip up in the shave bowl, the resulting lather was worth the time.

Since I prepped with the Green menthol + eucalyptus preshave, the preshave menthol took over the scent department and the Red scent with sandalwood was muted.  Perhaps the Red added a little mellowness to the scent, but not a lot. However, certainly there was lots of glide and slickness, in classic Proraso manner.

Afterward, a nice splash with the Green aftershave left everything great!

You weren’t even born yet…

…when this razor and shaving cream were made (probably)! For the shave on Tuesday, May 14th. Razor is a Gillette Superspeed Milord circa 1949. Shave cream is vintage ‘new old stock’ Palmolive in the tube. And there were even a new aftershave and talc in the little gift box, circa 1956. With a restored Rexall/Ronell brush. I even tried to shave with a NOS Gillette blade….but it was far too rough. Who knows if the edge oxidized within the wrappings over the 60 or more years…or whether I’ve just become more accustomed to modern, sharper and coated blades? Anyway, I quickly replaced the vintage blade with a modern one and it was smooth sailing from there! The Palmolive cream was excellent; a rich green goo with lots of palm and veggie oils, plus, of course, that characteristic Palmolive soap scent that those of my age will recall. I’ve heard of few folks who ‘love’ the scent…lots who hate it, but i found it pleasant and nostalgic. With a nice touch of menthol. The vintage razor did a great job, and after three passes, I finished it off with splashes of the Palmolive aftershave. This is probably even rarer than the vintage cream, and I would characterize it as a ‘green Aqua Velva’, replete with a menthol kick.

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This shave was so neat that I repeated it a couple days later…..same elements except only that the AOS chrome handled badger brush was a little handier. And same satisfying shave. Gotta wonder if (aside from Teflon coatings) all the ‘advances’ in shaving over these last 60 years…have, in fact, actually been regressive rather than progressive!?

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Mother’s Day timesavers!

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The shave on Sunday morning, Mothers Day, May 12th was rushed to meet a schedule. But it was still smooth and great. The AOS brush churned up a Shea-buttery lather from a handy puck of Institut Karite shave soap. Cleared with a mild Jagger razor and finished with healthy splash of Penhaligons Blenheim Bouquet aftershave plus a dab of IK Shea butter balm. It was a nice Mothers Day!

And, for even more efficiency, I repeated practically the same shave on Monday, except only that I happened to grab the Feather razor first! What a wonderful invention…Shea butter!!

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Spyce of life

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For a change of pace, Saturday May 11th was a good opportunity to see firsthand this Spice shave cream from Texas soap maker Spencer and Devon. This was a used tub of cream that probably had been dormant for some time since it had begun to separate. But no problem; it mixed and homogenized well. Whipped with a new and wonderful AOS chrome handled brush. Executed with the great Merkur futur adjustable razor on a mild setting, and topped off with classic Royal Spyce aftershave. Love it.

Another refreshing shave for the muggy weather!

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My last SOTD for this week. Saturday, May 4th. It’s already tropically muggy and hot! So, let’s do something cooling and refreshing.  Prep with the new sample of Maggard’s orange pre-shave oil. Then pulled out the ‘niche’ French shave soap, Martin de Candre’s Fougere (fern).  Whipped with the Truefitt and Hill large classic silvertip using Yoresh’s nice scuttle.
Cleared with the mild-mannered 1947 Gillette gold plated ball end Tech with Gillette Silver Blue blade.  All followed by the excellent Penhaligon’s Racquets cologne, plus a smear of Neutrogena sun block.  Ready for the rest of the weekend!

Very refreshing!

Birthyear shave

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What’s the big deal?  So, here is a new, old razor, made in same year as born.  Fortunately, it shaved nice and gently today, without aggravating a nick from a few days ago.  Advance prep was a wonderful lather massage of Musgo glycerine soap, which is highly recommended.  Refreshing and lubricating.  Then opened a sample pot of Queen Charlotte soap makers’ Esquire cream.  This tallow-based cream has a very pleasant pine-citrus-woodsy scent that reminded me of a gentrified Pine-Sol, and it performed great, with a thick lather and lasting slickness.  The Gillette 1947 Tech was loaded with a (new 2012) Gillette Silver Blue blade and it did the job perfectly.  Then finished off with a squirt of energetic Penhaligon’s Racquets.   As I went into the kitchen shortly after, SWMBO comments, “Is that bug spray I smell?”

Already wishing for refreshing stuff…

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Glacier Park was such an amazing place; it encompassed mountains, glacier fields, rivers, wetlands, forests, plains, meadows, and more.  One of the most memorable walks was in the conifer forest, with overpowering scents of cedar, fir and hemlock in the cool mist along the streams.  Ah, if someone could only bottle that!!

Supposedly, Green Irish Tweed scent from Creed is an attempt at that.  I would say, it’s not a bullseye, but in the general direction.  Overall,  a nice, refreshing shave with a lingering effect that works.  This shave was with a sample from the artisan soap-maker, Queen Charlotte, and followed by Creed’s original juice.  Not to be upstaged, the Feather razor was great joy to use.

I might just have to go back to Glacier for a first-hand ‘refresher’ soon!

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