Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Wet Shave Club Review

So, is not some fringe pornography site, it’s actually a legit men’s shaving site. And they want me to review their stuff. Given that I love shaving, manliness, and free stuff, how could I refuse?

According to the Internet, I’m one of the weirdos. The prevailing opinion online is that men, as a general rule, hate shaving. It’s seen as a chore; just one more thing to do in the morning. Personally, I love shaving. The few minutes it takes for a man to shave could mean the difference between a huge promotion or a dollar in his coffee cup. What’s more, anyone that says he “just” shaves in the shower, I feel kinda bad for them. I assume they have to pay for hot water at the YMCA or wherever they’re staying.  I get the same feeling when I meet a man who doesn’t read, or watch Breaking Bad – I’m sure he’s a nice guy, but I can’t shake the feeling that he’s fundamentally flawed.
I’m here to hopefully turn the tide. Men, it seems these days we don’t get a lot of time to ourselves. Even when we are alone, there’s a screen of some sort vying for our attention: the game, a movie, or Instagram (shameless plug: follow me on Instagram: @aa_pizzle). And when you consider women spend exponentially longer getting ready, the least you can do, for her and yourself, is invest 5-10 minutes in a good shave.

(By the way: Ladies, great job. I’m one of your Number 1 fans.  Don’t think we don’t notice the effort you put in. We’re grateful that you stick around at all.)

Maybe the problem lies in the tools. Bad workmen aside, maybe your razor and shave soap aren’t up to scratch.  Have you ever written with a dull pencil? Sure, it works, but it’s so much more satisfying when it’s sharp.  Use this way of thinking for your razors, and Wet Shave Club is here to make that a reality.

The last time I was clean shaven was an event in and of itself: on vacation in Turkey, where a man who has been shaving other men’s faces longer than I have been shaving my own had me in and out of the barber’s chair in under 20 minutes. I suspect he splashed some sort of lemon spirit on my face as the grand finale and it wasn’t unpleasant.
This time, though, it’s all me.  I have a beard, I grow it in damn well, so if this gear can tackle it, you know it has to count for something.

The safety razor that Wet Shave Club sent me (above, lower right) is weighty. It feels like an actual tool – way more exciting than the razors that are released by the giant companies.  I feel like there’s actual gravitas to what I’m doing, as if this is the way my grandfather shaved. The next step up from this is the scary straight razor, and while I’m a firm believer in the idea that you can learn anything on YouTube, some things are best left to practice on. I’ll stick with this razor, thank you very much.

The box comes with some handy tips for new guys like me who are used to 5-blade Venetian Blinds we’re shaving with these days. Read them. I deal with people every day so it’s a huge help not having my face sliced apart. I decided to make a real time of it and threw on some Sinatra. The tips say to shower, but I used a hot towel to soften up my hair and it seemed to do the trick just fine.

I started using a badger-hair brush about a year ago, but this one is much stiffer, good for getting all of the hair up and out. The soap, Ellington’s All Natural, has this amazing spicy smell that somehow reminds me of a time I was never part of.

The actual act was much more deliberate: it took longer to shave half my face today than it normally does to shave the entire thing.  Note: that is not a complaint at all.

Once it was all done, I used the aftershave lotion, another new experience for me. Local Gent boasts fresh scent of eucalyptus and mint, and a non-greasy cream was a solid end to the shave. I couldn’t help but notice that the lotion had a small hint of something like motor oil – but that could have easily been my imagination. I honestly feel a little more badass than I did when I woke up this morning.

I’m fortunate in that I don’t necessarily have to shave every day, but the gear Wet Shave Club sent me makes me want to make this a daily routine. I’m totally sold. The shave isn’t just about the shave; it’s about the experience. I dare you not to feel a little bit like Don Draper or Teddy Roosevelt while you enjoy – let’s be honest – what could be the best part of your day. 

Missed a spot...

 And as if that wasn't enough, check out the back of the lid for the soap. It's a sign: 

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