Posts tagged ‘Shaving cream’

Truefitt & Hill 1805 shaving cream


This review is a little delayed in coming, as I tested this product prior to the creation of this blog.  I better get on with it though as I have already posted on the Truefitt & Hill sample pack.

I will begin with a bit of a spoiler.  This is one of two favorites of mine.  The other being the Geo F Trumpers Coconut oil shaving cream.

I was a little apprehensive upon ordering this fragrance.  I have read many reviews that had stated the lighter unoffensive nature of the sent.  I tend to lean towards the lighter fragrances due to my work in a medical office.  I was pleasantly surprised when my shaving cream arrived.  First, the black tub is a nice change and looks very classy next to all of my standard beige tubs.  Second, the smell was quite pleasant, I would describe it as a spicy floral aroma and not too strong.  Enough to where you can smell it on your face during and immediately following your shave, but dissipating over the next hour or two.

Here is the online product description  “Fresh and oceanic, 1805 has top notes of bergamot, mandarin and cardamom combined with a lavender, geranium and clary sage heart resting on a sandalwood, cedarwood and musk base. For normal skin.”  I do think it has a somewhat oceanic scent.  A light scent that is appealing to those not wanting the stronger perfume.  Now on to the shave.

The consistency allows for easy application to the tips of my brush, and as I face lather it whips into a rich thick cream.  I find the scent on the face to be pleasant and not overpowering when under the nose. The Shave itself was noteworthy.  This cream is very slick and has excellent glide for the razor, allowing for very close shave with little to no sensation of tugging or pulling.  In fact, this was so smooth that I had to alter my test of the Feather Stainless Steel Razor as the razor itself proved extremely smooth, I was unable to determine if I was actually cutting hair or sliding the head of the razor over my skin with no blade contact.

I will review the various fragrances in the Trufitt & Hill Sampler.

I have become a big fan of the TH 1805 shaving cream and will definitely keep a tub on hand in my permanent rotation.


Truefitt & Hill Sample pack

My sampler just arrived in the mail. I am a big fan of the TH shaving creams. 1805 scent being one of my favorites.

This sampler is a great value. At $8.95 with free shipping it is a great way to try the different fragrances without buying each product. (as you may well know, TH products are not inexpensive)

It arrives in a classy drawstring bag.

As stated at it does not include the 1805 and trafalgar balms. A bit of a disappointment, but the scents are at least available in the shave cream sample and there are other scents in the balms that will allow me to see if I like the balms prior to buying. Aftershave balms are amongst the most difficult products to discover personal gold. I sometimes believe there is even more difference of opinion here then there is for blades and creams/soaps among wet shavers.

I am excited and will begin reviewing products as I use them. I have just started reviewing the Feather all stainless DE razor and unfortunately I need to test this razor with a variety of creams. (I used a TH cream this morning prior to sample pack arriving 😦 ) so I will have to hold out for a little longer.

Castle Forbes lime essential oil shaving cream


The Castle Forbes Shaving creams have been on my list to try for some time now.  Following the product reviews on various sites, I have been looking forward to testing this cream with some anticipation.  As you may have noticed with much of my writing here, I do enjoy the history and style of many of the classic products as I feel they add a certain air of class and nostalgia to the art.  I did want to look a bit into the history of this manufacturer which I found to be a little confusing.  While I feel this does not affect the quality of the product it did spark my curiosity.  As posted in product description for this shaving cream, it describes this product as being spawned in 1815 by Lord Forbes after complaining of his sensitive skin, and makes mention of the family recipe.  According to the Castle Forbes site  the perfumery was established in 1996, but that castle Forbes was built in 1815 for Lord Forbes of Clan Forbes.  My assumption is that the current product manufacture dates from 1996 and possibly the shaving cream recipe is from the founder ~1815, although the 1815 date that continually pops up appears to just represent the actual building of the castle itself.

Enough!  Trivia aside and on to the product.

The Castle Forbes cream arrived in a modern, handsome looking box and tub, with hints of classic styling, I was impressed to see that at 200 ml, it was a little more tub than I am used to getting.  Upon opening I found to scent to be of much stronger lime than I have previously experienced with lime scented shaving creams, very pleasant but not overpoweringly sweet.  The Cream also had a very nice texture, thick but not slimy and dense but not hard packed.


The Manufacturer actually gave directions for use on the package, so I thought I will use it as they say rather than as I would in normal practice.  I purposely chose to use the minimal amount of soap that I thought would be fair based on the instruction, of course allowing for a retest under normal circumstances if the test proved poor results.  The fact that they were making the claim of less is more caused me to rise to the challeng.  I used the minimal amount I could to get a healthy lather for my first past.  It was indeed very creamy and offered a superb shave, minimal to no resistance with blade and beard, very smooth but without the slickness or slippery feeling of some creams (I don’t view that as detrimental just something I noted).  It did indeed feel very good.  As per instruction I needed to add a little water for my second pass.  Not exactly what I was expecting I was expecting a little more invigoration of the lather.  It was noticeably thinner on application of the second pass, but again the shave proved flawless and comfortable.  Third Pass, even thinner with mainly a thin white film coating my face, as I was unable to generate any more creamy lather.  This did not seem to affect the quality of the shave.  I had another very fine pass .  I was quite surprised, I was expecting a  nasty case of razor burn on the last past on one of my tough patches alongside the trachea of my neck.  This did not happen and it went smoothly again.  Lastly I squeezed out the remnants of my brush for touch up, and did get a healthy amount of thick lather from the bristles.

The After Shave:  My skin felt very nice, moist, smooth and refreshed.  I applied alum to feel for burn.  Slightest notice alongside trachea, but no worse than my favorite creams.  I must admit when using my favorites I do my touch up pass against the grain on my neck.  I felt comfortable enough with this cream on this test to do that.  If not, I doubt there would have been any burn.

As strong as the scent is at first notice it did not seem to linger long post shave.

Overall, I was very pleased.  I have even made room for this oversize tub in my permanent keeper drawer, I would say this is in my top 4 favorite creams.  I will note updates if I note a change in status or observation with subsequent use.

Form:  A

Consistency is easy to apply to brush.  Large surface area of tub may lead to unnecessary use of cream for brush dippers.

Function: A+

Excellent product that performs exceptionally well.  Use a little more cream than suggested and make the shave  into some real luxury time.

Style A

I do like the style of the product and how it does distinguish them from the rest of the market.  I had thought of downgrading the product to a B due to all the confusing information on many of the sellers websites.  I did not because the manufacturer does clearly state they have been manufacturing since 1996.

My Shaving Routine

The Items I list below are my default items while testing products not in that category.

To begin I will state that while  it may seem a bit extreme or formal for me to follow these steps with my daily shave, but I find it necessary.  First, I enjoy my morning ritual.  Second, It helps me when trying new products as I am able to substitute an item into any step for review.

1.  Start morning with hot shower.  First, soaking my face. Followed by applying my home made pre-shave oil to my beard.  I leave this on as I shower to moisten and soften the beard. (I will post the recipe I use)

2.  After shower, I wash face in sink with Musgo Real Glycerin Lime Oil Soap to remove the remaining shave oil but still moistening skin and hair with glycerin.  (Some ask why I remove the oil.  I do not like the residue it leaves on my brush and razor, yet I don’t skip the step because it feels to me that the previous step does make a difference.)

3.  I then apply a non oil based pre-shave usually Taylor of Old Bond Street Herbal Pre-shave Gel (I am still testing here, as I feel this may be my weakest link, but as of yet this is my preferred product.)

4. I then wet and warm my Kent BLK8 Traditional, Large, Pure Silver Tip Badger Shaving Brush and build up lather with shaving cream of choice.  (most of my changes are in this category, I have several I use regularly in rotation and am constantly trying new brands).

5.  I make three regular passes. With and Edwin Jagger DE89bl razor and Feather hi-stainless platinum blades.

First pass is with the grain.  Please take the time to determine the growth pattern of your beard, it is not the same on everyone.  (For years, I hated shaving my neck as my teacher/father told me to shave downward.  Well, guess what, the grain on my neck grows upward.  For 20+ years I dreaded shaving my neck, I never researched it because I had just assumed that I had sensitive skin.  It wasn’t until researching classic wet shaving that this point was clearly explained to me).

Second pass is across the grain. The first two passes are pretty consistent in what you find across most descriptions.

Third pass, Oblique pass.  This is the one that varies most with recommended techniques.  I am of the mind that against the grain is rough, no matter the equipment and prep (on my face) and the areas that don’t bother me to go against, I really don’t have to.  I prefer shaving  obliquely or at about a 45 degree angle between the across and against growth.  I find this allows me to get in that close pass without the irritation.

Lastly, touch up pass.  Usually squeeze out the last very rich and thick lather and applying by hand to the areas that could you a touch up or mild buff.

Keeping in mind that throughout the entire procedure let the razor do the work.  Weight of the razor just Guide and let the razor glide (guide and glide).  Most of the problems I have helped with have involved people using their double edged safety razors like they used their cartridge razors.  This only works to sell more styptic products and toilet paper.

6.  Warm water wash followed by cold water wash.

7.  Apply Alum (This step is usually used when trying new products so that I may gauge razor burn)

8.  Clean and return shaving articles to the proper place.

9.  Cold water face wash.

10.  Apply undiluted Geo F Trumper Limes skin food to towel dried face. (this is one step I cannot quite explain, I am still working on it.  It feels good to me and I notice if I leave this step out, so I just keep doing it. I will go into more detail when I write the review for the product.)

11.  Brush teeth while face absorbing skin food.

12.  Apply non alcohol aftershave.  Workdays Feather Kanwa (unscented) herbal aftershave balm or Taylor of Bond Street “shaving shop” aftershave gel.  On non work days  when I can splurge on the fragrance then, Castle Forbes Lime essential oil alcohol free aftershave balm.


Geo F. Trumper Coconut Oil Soft Shaving Cream

This is my favorite shaving cream to date, I am not stating it is the best, as you will read in some of my future reviews I have several items that I find to be excellent, this is just a personal favorite.

Used with a good brush it produces a thick luxurious lather, that enables a very pleasant and smooth shave. I have found that it works best with my silver tip brushes, it does seem to have a somewhat dryer lather and the added water in the brush seems to help if you prefer a little more fluidity in your lather. This my no means effects the quality of the product either dryer and thicker or more wet and watery, both provided an amazing shave.

My first concern was of course what kind of coconut smell are we going to find. To my pleasant surprise the scent was light and fresh coming from the coconut oil used in the cream and not from added fragrance or essential oils. This light scent lingers for hours after shaving. I found this to be very refreshing. The oil in the cream leaves my skin feeling very soft and moisturized and provides a very slick, gliding surface for the razor.

I will explain now why I have stated above this is my favorite cream. This is my go to cream following any day when I have tested an exceptional harsh product, it always seems smooth, even if I am recovering from a serious case of razor burn. It helps my skin to feel better when it is feeling a bit abused. It is also the only cream that I apply any residue onto my face following my final pass and let sit and soak on my skin. I have a very specific ritual for my shaving process and this particular cream is the only one that sees an exception. Following my final pass I wash my face then apply alum, at which point I clean all of my equipment and put everything away. For this cream I apply the residue to my face and clean and retire my equipment , followed by washing the face of remaining cream and then applying alum. This allows for a few extra minutes for the coconut oil to absorb into the skin. It really does leave my skin feeling good.

Form: A

Delicious smell and consistency. In fact my 2 1/2 year old daughter is constantly asking to smell it and then pretends to eat it.

Function: A+

This is a great all around cream, as long as you like coconut. Luxuriant lather, extremely smooth and slick shave. Leaves skin feeling smooth, refreshed and moisturized.

Style: A

Style to be expected from a one of the classic British companies that embodies style. Attractive and functional packaging. A must have in my rotation of shaving cream.