Tag Archives: Imagelogger

Whipping A Great Lather

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As a kid, I can remember running around the house, stumbling upon my dad shaving in the bathroom while watching his face, full of shaving cream and always thinking, that was so cool; it often left me wanting to do it, too. He never formally taught me how to whip up a great lather, but with time I developed a reliable technique of my own. Continue reading my latest post on Bevelcode.com.

Why You Should Use Priming Oil

Use priming oil for a smoother shaveEver since I became a father, I haven’t had time for much other than being a father. As a result, my passions have shifted, things that I’m passionate about, have taken a backseat to my new responsibility. Don’t get me wrong, however, I love every minute of it.

Nevertheless, writing about grooming doesn’t seem to want to let me go. I don’t want to let it go either.

I am now a contributing writer for Bevel. If I wasn’t, I’d muster up the time to tell you how great I think this company is. Nevertheless, my first article for them, where I talk about the importance of priming oil, is live. I’ll be writing about shaving and hope you keep up with my posts.

Time is still elusive and I’m burning the midnight oil to write for them and hope to burn some more to get back to blogging here at Fragrantmoments. In the meantime, check me out over at Bevel.

Rituals Samurai Magic Shave

If there’s one thing about shaving I really enjoy, it’s using my badger brush. Not only is it good for preparing your face, but I find it soothing. When I opened this jar of Rituals Samurai Magic Shave and saw it had the consistency of cream, I knew this wouldn’t be my mind kind of shaving solution.

My heart sank a bit because I really like the Rituals brand. To save the situation, I gave it a try with my brush and as expected, it didn’t work. In a last ditch effort to give this thing a try, however, I used my fingers to apply the Magic Shave and I’m so glad I did.

The problems I’ve encountered with shaving solutions that have the consistency of cream is they end up clogging my razor, which lengthens the amount of time needed to shave. That can get frustrating. Rituals Samurai Magic Shave applies a nice protective coat to the face without being super thick. Even after attempting to work up a lather, which it did, a good portion absorbed into my skin and what was left was a thin coat which helped the razor glide across my face with ease.

I really enjoyed the scent of this Magic Shave. It’s infused with basil and ginger, which work really well together. Again, in this area, Rituals hits the bullseye. Not only is the scent not overpowering, I didn’t incur any feeling of dryness. Normally the additives associated with producing scent in shaving solutions can cause dry skin. That’s far from being the case here.

In a recent post, I gave a reader some tips for picking up the pace of their morning grooming regimen. For those occasions,  the use of Rituals Samurai Magic Shave will be my go-to. I can also see it being my travel partner as well.

Rituals Samurai Magic Shave is available in a 70ml tube for $12, which isn’t a bad price if you want to give this a try. If you do, let me know what you think.

 

 

Dude Beauty Blogger

Fragrant Moments blogger, Barney Bishop featured on Yahoo Beauty

Earlier this week, Yahoo’s Beauty site featured a story about male bloggers that write about men’s grooming and I was honored to be amongst the other seven gentlemen featured. About me, the writer Christina Valhouli said, “His blog posts are eloquent and elegant…” That touched me.

Thank you Christina. Thank you Yahoo.

In The Mail: Shaving Off Time

 

“I love my morning routine, which includes shaving, but I’m wondering how I can cut down on the time I’m spending in the bathroom? Shaving takes the most time?”

Martin – Memphis, TN

A couple of years ago while visiting Shinn Estate Vineyards in Mattituck, NY I was having a conversation at breakfast and grooming was the topic of the moment. When I disclosed I used a badger brush every morning, the looks I received from the gents at the table were priceless. One gent went so far as to say, “What? Where do you find the time?” My reply, “I make time. It’s me time.” I’m sure that tickled him pink inside. But in all seriousness, it’s true. I look at my morning shower, which also includes shaving, as a moment I not only have to myself, but a chance to gather my thoughts for the day. There are however, times when I just need to get it done, pronto.

I find when my blades are their sharpest, I zip through my shave. My first piece of advice then would be to make sure you’re changing your blades often. Some people recommend 5 days, other say sooner. I think you’ll know when it’s time and that’s when you should change them. If you find yourself going over the same areas a few times, it’s time to switch them out.

If you’re using a badger brush, ditch it and use your hands. While the bristles of the brush are good for massaging your face and lifting hairs, if you’re in a hurry, a few seconds count.

This last piece of advice may have the purists shunning me but oh well. For those mornings when you’re really pressed for time and you’re looking in the mirror asking yourself can you get through the day without shaving, go electric. Yep…I said it. Electric is where I started and I’ve never fully turned my back on it. Zip, zip, zip and I’m done. I enjoy the act of shaving a lot but some mornings I just need it to be done and my electric shaver comes in handy.

As always, thanks for the questions. Feel free to drop a line at fm@fragrantmoments.net.

Dolce & Gabbana Intenso

Dolce & Gabbana Intenso

 

I can’t remember the last time a fragrance by a mass brand REALLY caught my attention. While that may sound snooty, the reality is I find most them unimaginative because they’re all the same.

While working on a fragrance and grooming project, I came across the recently launched Dolce & Gabbana Intenso and haven’t been able to stop wearing it since.

Many years ago before I got into the blogging thing, there were a handful of fragrances I wore on a regular basis and Dole & Gabbana Pour Homme was one of them. Upon first sniff of Intenso, I was instantly taken back. While they have similar characteristics, they are very different.

For Intenso, it’s all about elegance and you get that right from the packaging. The box has a velvet feel and the dark bottle with brownish gold lettering definitely carries this thought all the way through. You really don’t expect the scent to open as light as it does from the usage of dark rich colors but it’s really fresh and clean. I find that this freshness lasts quite a while. As it dries down, however, the tobacco and woody notes begin to take shape and that’s when it truly becomes impressive. The way the scent juxtaposes the freshness and warmth is really nice. I’m a big fan of tobacco and wish it was a bit more present to cut some of the scents sweetness but I can live with it.

Intenso is an eau de parfum so it’s longevity is very good. Its last selling point, which I find equally as important, is its sillage. Intenso isn’t as intense as its name would have you imagine. Its presence is just strong enough to capture the right curiosity so don’t go and over spray or that curiosity will turn you into “that guy.”

Oh, by the way, Collin Farrell is the face behind Intenso. That’s cool and all but its the juice that seals the deal.

In The Mail: Breaking in your badger brush

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“I recently bought a badger brush but my excitement has faded as I can’t get it build a great lather. What am I doing wrong?”

Nathan – Detroit, Michigan

As a kid, I remember my dad would walk around the house in his new shoes. I found it odd that he would be pacing back and forth keeping a lot of noise. When I asked him what he was doing, he simply replied, “I’m breaking in my new shoes.” If you’ve ever worn brand new shoes, for the first time, for the entire day, I’m sure you can relate. The first few wears can be painful but the more you break them in, the better they feel. With a badger brush, the same is true – you’ve got it break it in before it becomes your best friend.

If you troll the Internet, you’ll find a myriad of opinions on breaking in a badger brush. To me, the simplest and shortest answer is to just use it. With the bristles being so new, they’re stiff and don’t hold water or your shaving cream, which ends up producing a lack luster forth. With time and regular use, they will soften, the brush’s hair will bloom and you’ll notice its performance changes producing the desired lather.

Patience is key to breaking in your badger brush Nathan. Fight through the frustration and know a lifetime of great lathering is just around the corner. Hang in there, you won’t be sorry. I promise.

If you have fragrance or grooming questions, feel free to shoot me a message at fm@fragantmoments.net.

Happy shaving Nathan.

The Beloved Is Back

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If I pulled a bunch of my guy friends together and went down a scented memory lane, a few must haves from back in the day would be repeated, Polo in the green bottle, CK One, Cool Water, and Joop are a few that come to mind. One in particular was hands down a crowd favorite, Issey Myake. I remember having a conversation with my barber and the way he emphasized his fondness for the scent, it was though an outfit for a night out was incomplete without those final few sprays.

For the first time since dropping his beloved namesake scent, Issey Myake, the Japanese designer has released a new scent, Nuit D’Issey. On first sight, I thought it was another flanker because the bottle’s shape has remained the same. For this scent, Myake enlisted the noses of Dominique Ropion and Loc Dong and they’ve produced a crowd pleaser.

The scent’s opening is sharp and crisp  and we can thank its grapefruit note for that. I also detect hints of pepper, which give it enough of a lift to spark curiosity. From there leather and woods give it a virility that we’ve  come to expect from men’s fragrances.

Nuit D’Issey hits all the right notes and for that I expect it will be well received. Whether or not barbershops and cigar dens will be reminiscing about it a decade from now only time will tell.

Nuit D’Issey can be found nationwide at Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, & Sephora.

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Wordless Wednesdays

Manhattanhenge

Dove Men Care Expert Shave Cream

Dove Men Care Expert Shave Cream

 

Now that we’re in the thick of summer, shaving can be a real chore…umm add to that grooming in general. While we’re taking off layers of clothing, the last thing we want to do is put on extra lotions, etc. I recently gave Dove Men Care Expert Shave Smoothing Shave Cream a test run and out the gate, it felt incredibly light against my skin – a win for the brutal summer months.

The Dove Men Care Expert Shave Cream is a partnership between Dove and leading barbers and dermatologists. It’s been formulated to give shavers adequate moisture, protect the skin and provide a smooth glide. Sound familiar, you bet. Does it deliver, indeed it does.

The first thing that caught my attention about the shave cream was it’s scent. It’s beautifully masculine without being being overly bravado. It smells like you’d want to smell all day. Next, the cream does produce a very good lather but it felt more foamy rather than creamy. I like a good lather and with just a tap into the shave cream, you can work up a good one. The more I worked it in, the frothier it became. The best part, and I suspect most men will appreciate this, it didn’t weigh down my face; it barely felt like it was there. In the summer time, that’s a beautiful thing.

On some occasions while testing the shave cream, I felt like it could have produced more glide. Some of the best shave creams I’ve used, after the first pass, while there maybe little visible shave cream left on my face, what remains is a slick enough surface that allows my razor to glide with ease. That’s usually when I run my hand cross grain to find spots I missed. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not a big deal. You can always reapply more shave cream with what’s left over on your badger brush and doing so with this shave cream gave me the extra glide needed for subsequent passes.

Overall, the shave cream performs well. Even with its scent, which could be an issue for some, my face never felt dry.The collaborators also know a thing or two about packaging. My wife commented that it looks high end. It’s very well done.

Dove Men Care Expert Shave Cream – 150ML – $21.99