Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Product review: The Shave Well Company Truly Fog Free Shower Shave Mirror

I've tried a bunch of different shower mirrors over the years.  The fact that I've tried so many is a pretty good indicator that I haven't had the greatest luck with them.  So many of them have not lived up to their fogless claims, have rusted, or fell off of my shower wall and got damaged.  These have been mirrors of different sizes and shapes - all used for the sole purpose of shaving in the shower.  This product is the most recent one I have bought, and I've used it quite some time now before writing this review.

Before buying, I read the reviews of this mirror and most of them were pretty favorable.  I recall reading some reviews saying that it did not work as well as expected.  I decided to give it a try.  For the price, it is very affordable for a shower mirror.  The first thing that got my attention was that this mirror is small.  Probably the smallest shower mirror I have owned, at 6" by 4".  It is also very basic and isn't very visually appealing.  If you are concerned about aesthetics more than function, you probably won't be crazy about this product.  There is no frame of any kind and no razor hangers or anything else on it.  Just a board with reflective mirror coating.  One of the selling points for this mirror is that it uses adhesive tape to stick to your shower wall rather than a suction cup.  Well, my mirror eventually fell from the shower wall.  The mirror didn't sustain any damage from the fall unlike other mirrors I have owned.  However, I ended up replacing the hook that it came with (and adhesive tape), with a quality suction cup hook.  It has not fallen since.

As far as being fogless goes, I really did not find this mirror to perform much better than any other fogless mirror I have owned.  I have always made sure to follow the directions by placing the mirror under the stream of hot water from the shower (and much longer than the recommended 2-3 seconds).  I tried holding it very close to my shower head so that it would be hit with the hottest water coming out of it.  The mirror stays fog free for a couple minutes before it gets foggy.  I usually have to take it off the hook and put it back under the shower head a few times during the course of a shave.  I understand that it is a matter of physics that makes it work, and that it should work. However, in my situation, with my conditions, it simply does not work significantly better (if at all) than a fogless mirror that does not have to be removed from the hook and placed under the stream of water from the shower head.

The mirror appears to be very durable.  It has probably remained the cleanest of any mirror I have ever used for an extended period of time.  When the mirror is fogless it is extremely clear.  Unfortunately, the fogless part hasn't worked out too well for me.  While writing this post I found that Shave Well now has a mirror that is 33% larger than the one I own.  That is definitely a positive, as I feel the original one is on the small side.  For someone that wants a durable, no-frills mirror, this mirror may be perfectly fine for those needs.  Otherwise, if you are like me, you may be a bit disappointed by some of the characteristics of this mirror.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Product review: Proraso shaving cream soap, Eucalyptus and Menthol

Ahhh, yes, Proraso.  Particularly, Proraso shave cream with Menthol and Eucalyptus.  Whether you are a wetshaving veteran or a noob, you've likely heard of this brand of product.  This is one of the first shaving soaps I ever used, mainly due to the reputation of the product.  I consider this one a go-to shave soap and I seem to always have one of these on hand.
This product is made in Italy.  The company was founded in 1930 and has been used worldwide for a number of years.  The smell of eucalyptus is fairly strong, but I don't find it overwhelming.  Definitely appealing to me.

The lather of this soap is pretty impressive.  It can be worked into a thick lather with relative ease.  The coverage from the lather is very good.  Just a little whipping of the product will provide plenty of coverage to make a couple passes with the razor over your entire face.  The razor cuts very well with this, gliding with little friction.  The menthol in this cream enhances the experience of shaving with it by providing a cooling sensation.  The overall quality of shave is excellent.

The price of the product for the quality is very reasonable.  There is nothing really fancy about the packaging or even the container.  It is just a solid and reliable product.  You can always count for a good shave.  I especially recommend this for people just starting.  The cream is really easy to work with and performs very well, regardless of the amount of water or type of brush used.  It's hard to go wrong with this cream.  Chances are, you've already used this if you've been shaving the old fashioned way for any amount of time, if not, give it a try!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Take a month off from shaving for Movember!

It's stache time!

November in the US is the month that is designated for raising awareness about men's health issues. Prostate and testicular cancer are the main ones. Men really need to step it up and become more aware of male-specific health issues.  Every year we are bombarded by pink everything during the month of October for breast cancer awareness.  Yet, male cancers are rarely discussed or addressed.  One in six men are diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime and the life expectancy for men is currently five years shorter than women.

So how does a stache fit into this?  The growing of a mustache for this month is a useful way to show your support for men's health initiatives.  It sounds silly, but it does work.  The growing of a mustache really serves as a conversation starter on health issues.  Men are generally uneasy about these conversations and the mustache breaks the ice and draws attention to the issues.

So, if you are interested in participating, sign up at Movember.com and create a "Mo Space" to showcase your stache.  You can easily accept donations that go towards research and awareness for male cancers.  About 82% of raised money goes to men's health programs, and not just towards marketing campaigns.  So, step up and get involved, and have some fun while you're at it.  The cause is a serious one, however, and more men should be take it seriously.

Watch the video and learn more about Movember:

Friday, October 19, 2012

Product review: Taylor of Old Bond Street Avocado Shaving Cream

Ahhh, yes.  This is one of the first shaving creams I used back when I got into wetshaving.  I find myself going back to this one from time to time.  I'm never disappointed.  A tub of this can be had for about $15 from various retailers.

Ok, so the fragrance is fairly subtle in this product.  That's probably a good thing.  I really wasn't sure what to expect it to smell like considering it contains avocado.  The scent is light and fresh with a sort of grassy smell.  The smell might turn some people off but it doesn't bother me.  If you aren't deterred by the smell, I think you will be pleased by the results.

This cream yields one of the best lathers of any shaving cream I have used.  It doesn't take much cream on the tip of your brush to really get this going.  The later lubricates the razor very well.  Perhaps it is the avocado oil in this cream that provides a really smooth shave.  Additionally, it is likely the avocado oil that leaves my face feeling moisturized and not irritated.  Considering this was one of my first shaving creams, I think this would be good for other beginners as well.  It lathers super easy and provides a quality shave.