Thursday, 6 November 2014
Sunday, 19 October 2014
Most seasoned wet shavers will tell you that proper face prep is key to a good clean shave. One of the best ways to soften up the beard and prepare the skin for shaving is by using a hot towel against the skin. Anyone who has been to a professional barber for a full hot towel shave will testify to this. Most barbers use specialised towel steamers but there is a way to create your own hot towel at home. It's a fairly simple procedure.
You will need the following items:
- Face towel
- Essential oil eg Ecalyptus, Sandalwood, Lavender (optional)
- Microwave oven
Wet your towel and wring it out. You can then scent the towel with a few drops of essential oil (a bit of Vick's Vaporub does the job if you don't have any essential oils). Put the towel in the microwave for two minutes on 'Very High' setting. The towel should come out steaming.
Please be sure to check the temperature of the towel before applying it your face. Towels straight out of the microwave can be VERY hot.
Wrap the towel around your face and let it sit for a minute or two. This will soften up the whiskers nicely. Some barbers apply a bit of pre shave balm, or lather to the face before applying the hot towel. You can experiment with this to find what method works best for your skin.
The round off the barbershop experience, you can also finish off the shave with a cold towel. Wet a towel, wring it out, put in a Ziploc bag, and then leave it in the fridge overnight. You can then apply this to your face after shaving.
Posted by RVT at 17:54
Saturday, 18 October 2014
Wednesday, 1 October 2014
River Valley trading crew member Riaz has been experimenting with various brands of SuperMax blades for the past month and he shared his findings with us:
I have been using the entire range of Supermax blades available to me over the last month of September 2014.
Each blade was used for three shaves then I moved onto the next one. The creams that I used alternatively were Body Shop and Godrej Sensitive (Red).
The blades I used were :
Supermax New & Improved
These are my subjective opinions on the above:
I started with the Yellow - a blade I am very familiar with and use most often. A good clean shave. A good compromise between smoothness and aggressiveness. Holds a decent edge for three shaves at least.
Then I went onto the Blue. Excellent. Definitely a cut above the yellow. Very smooth and comfortable shave. Ultra close. Feels very similar to Treet platinum which is the softest that I have ever used.
Thereafter the Green. I was pleasantly surprised. Very smooth. A notch below the blue. Silky as well. Very close shave. I like this one.
This week was the “New & Improved”. Honestly , I don’t know what’s new and improved about this one. Maybe new and improved packaging that’s about it. It felt really rough compared to the above. The shave was decent but felt really aggressive. Would not buy this one again.
If I could rate all, this is how I would put it:
4. New & Improved ( was the worst).
As a follow up from the above. It was my first time using the Godrej cream. I used it alternatively to the Body shop maca root so that I could compare. Here are my findings.
1. Body shop Maca root. As per my previous review of this product. Nothing has changed. An average cream at best. Will do the job but at this price point (R120) I would expect much more in terms of cushion and glide. Best thing about this one is the face after care. As usual with this one for me, always 1 or 2 minor nicks.
2. The Godrej comes with a worldwide reputation so I was very interested to see what the hype was all about. Dispensed a pea sized amount of cream and lathered it up. Lathers up easy and rich. A tad more water required for this one in my opinion. Lathered up and gave it a go. Brilliant. Excellent cushion and glide. To me the face care is better than the body shop. You definitely have that fresh glow after the shave. I can see why this is sought after. After this initial test I have been using it for the month of September 2014 alternatively with the Bodyshop. I say for sure that the Godrej is a superior product. Not one nick or cut, not one!
Posted by RVT at 09:04
Tuesday, 23 September 2014
A household name in India, Godrej has been manufacturing shave cream since 1969. Although highly sought after by wet shavers throughout the world, this shave cream is extremely difficult to find (let alone purchase) outside of the Indian subcontinent. There 3 main varieties: Menthol (blue), Lime (green), and Sensitive (red). I'll be reviewing Godrej Cool Menthol (commonly known as Godrej Blue).
This cream is regarded as one of the more upmarket shave creams in India. The cream comes in a 60g plastic tube with a screw type cap. The one I was testing had 30% extra free, so the overall tube had 78 grams of cream. the quality of the tube is quite good compared to other Indian / Pakistani shave creams. The first thing that struck me was the scent. Very clean, slightly woody, and with a hint of menthol.
I squeezed out a large pea size blob of cream into an 11cm double wall shave bowl and set to work with my badger brush. Lathering is super fast and and very easy. This has to be about the easiest lathering cream I have come across. Just add in a few drops of water to get the shine and work it up till you see those fluffy peaks. I must admit at this stage that I was slightly disappointed with lack of menthol scent coming off the cream. I was expecting the menthol effect on the skin to be rather mild. I could not have been more wrong.
Being a fan of menthol shave creams (especially Proraso green), I had heard good things about the cooling menthol 'zing' from Godrej blue. The menthol scent might be mild but cooling effect is excellent. As soon as I applied the lather to my face I felt the coolness - not too icy but just right to cool you down on a hot summer morning.
The lather provides excellent cushion, and the slide is very good. Only slight drawback is that the cream does leave some residue on the face. I found the Godrej lather lasted long enough for 2 passes without drying out. The skincare properties are very good. Godrej combines lanolin with glycerin and these ingredients soften and moisturise the skin. My skin felt really soft and refreshed after the shave. I normally rinse off with cold water and this, combined with the menthol shave cream, gives a chilly wake up call in the morning.
Overall, this is an excellent shave cream that has earned quite a reputation. The price point is slightly higher compared to other Indian / Pakistani shave creams, but keep in mind this product is rarely found outside of the Asian subcontinent. River Valley Trading have stock of Godrej Cool Menthol, and Godrej Sensitive (love the scent!) . You can also buy both as a Bundle Pack for better value.
Posted by RVT at 08:00