Friday, August 22, 2014

Two Shave-Soap Sticks on Order

In the last day or so I ordered two venerable shave sticks to evaluate and compare to my own shave-soap formulation. These two sticks are the Palmolive and Arko brands. These have received generally positive and enthusiastic product reviews on the Internet, though the Arko tends to get a bit more criticism for its fragrance; some like it, but some really don't. While the Arko is available from USA-base sellers, the Palmolive ships from Europe. This means that I'll be receiving the Arko first, and then the Palmolive should arrive a week or two later (being thrifty, I am loathe to pay extra for expedited shipping).

In case you don't know, a shave stick is basically a cylinder of soft shave soap. It is intended to be rubbed directly on one's wet beard, and then whipped into an appropriate shaving lather using a damp shaving brush (or fingers). Some prefer the shave stick when traveling because one doesn't have to lug a mug or bowl, and can use the shave soap directly on the face by simply peeling away the packaging to expose the product.

In formulating my own prototype shave soap, which I use daily, I have evolved it through ten basic versions, designated by number, and then there have been variants to the basic formulations, designated by letter. My current soap is formulation 10A. When I first began contemplating my own shave soap, I consulted the ingredients of many products from pucks of shave soap through even the canned foams and gels. Two products that I made sure to review during this ingredient research included these Arko and Palmolive shave sticks. Once I had a list of likely ingredients to use, I compared fatty-acid components of various shave soap, gel, and foam products to my prospective initial formulations. From those, I chose what looked like the best one to start, shave soap #1, and began the long series of trials and evolution to arrive at the most current leader in the club house (golf metaphor).

So in the coming days and weeks, I will likely be doing both stand-alone trials and  and comparison trials pitting the shave sticks against each other as well as against my current shave soap formulation.

Stay tuned: same bat time, same bat channel (allusion to the old Batman TV series from the 1960s).

Happy shaving!

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