August Subscription Box: Quality Wet Shaving Goods From Independent Brands
This month we’ve put together a really well matched box of shaving goods from some exciting small brands you’ve probably never heard of. To top it off we’ve sourced our own alum block for the perfect finish to a wet shave. Enjoy!
Suezbana Cedarwood And Black Pepper Shaving Cream
Suezbana is a small independent brand from Essex that specialises in natural handmade beauty products for men and women. Utilising high quality ingredients without parabens or any other nasties, they make truly unique products that are beneficial for the skin. This shaving cream has a beautifully warm, woody scent that matches well with this month’s pre-shaving oil. Cedarwood is known as an astringent with healing properties whilst black pepper is used as an anti-inflammatory. The cream produces a really thick and stable lather without any effort whatsoever so you can be sure of a really protective lather for the entire shave without needing to be reapplied. The product itself has a thick consistency, more of a soft shaving soap than a cream, so you can confidently load your brush straight in the tin without fear of it getting watered down over time. Overall we were really impressed by this cream and hope to show off more of the Suezbana range in the future.
To use: Using a slightly damp brush, swirl it in the shaving cream until it is sufficiently covered and then work up your lather as normal either in a bowl, your hand or directly on your face. Leave the cream in the open air (with the lid off) to fully dry between uses.
The first brand we’ve featured that is named after a Viking King! Sweyn Forkbeard is an exciting new brand boasting a range of unique, handmade beard and shaving products. Designed for “the man who fights every day in the globalised world without losing his chivalry and masculinity”. We’re incredibly impressed by the dedication that went into making such an authentic product. 6 months of research in England, Denmark and Norway which included translating old documents, research at Viking museums and interviews with specialists. All of this culminated in recipes inspired by those used in 1,013 by Vikings and Englishmen. All their range are made in London with 100% natural and organic ingredients without parabens, sulphates artificial fragrances or colours. We found the shaving oil to be best used pre-shaving cream to give the skin an extra protective buffer from the blade and a really smooth comfortable shave. Safe for use with sensitive skin. The Cedarwood, Lime and Mav Chang fragrance is very manly and goes perfectly with this month’s shaving cream.
To use: Add a couple of drops into your hand, rub into your stubble and then leave for a full minute before applying your shaving cream. Use this waiting time to starting whipping up your shaving lather.
The original after shave used by Egyptians, alum is a natural product that has been in use for thousands of years for its healing properties. Potassium Aluminium Sulphate (the chemical name) is now used in numerous applications but in its crystalline form it’s an essential item for all wet shavers. Usually used as an astringent to stop bleeding by constricting the blood vessels but it also tightens pores and acts as an antiseptic that kills any surface bacteria. It differs from a styptic pencil, which is usually a reformed stick of powdered alum, because it is a solid block that is intended to be rubbed all over the shaved area whereas a pencil is specifically used for individual cuts. Using a pencil all over the face may wear it down rather quickly whereas this block is much longer lasting. But the true genius of the alum block is in technique monitoring. Poor technique or blunt blades often result in microscopic cuts and nicks during shaving but most of these are invisible to the eye. You may think you’ve had a good shave but there is always room to improve. When you rub the alum block over any hidden spots of irritation it will immediately sting. You can use this stinging to identify areas of your face where you are perhaps not being careful enough or it could be a signal that your blade needs changing.
To use: Immediately after you have finished shaving, wipe away any remaining bits of hair or lather then splash your face with cold water. Take your alum block, dampen it with water and then proceed to gently rub all over the face. Once done, wash it off with cold water before applying your shaving balm. Store the stone in an open, dry space to prevent it from dissolving.
Made in South Korea and known to be incredibly sharp, the Dorco Platinums are a much loved blade for their keen edge but forgiving shave. Most find they get excellent results from these and they tend to go the distance, lasting 3-7 shaves. If you do find they’re a bit too sharp, don’t throw them away yet! Often with a sharp blade, the second shave is the best as it has blunted the edge slightly. This can also be artificially achieved through a practice known as corking.