There are certain things that should never, ever be rushed. The first golden sip of a single malt whisky. The final tweaks and touches to a tailor-made suit. The purring, peaceful gear changes of a vintage Jaguar S-Type. And, perhaps most importantly, your morning shaving routine.
There are few operations more delicate than that first brush of the blade. Most mornings, we get up and reach for our razors — starting the day with a shave to ensure we look both sharp and smooth. But many modern men have neglected this ritual; rushing through it for the sake of speed or, heaven forbid, opting for an electric foil shaver over the time-honoured, tried-and-tested manual razor.
So we’re here to reclaim it. Gentleman’s Journal is on a crusade to champion the wet shave, and put the pomp and ceremony back into your morning routine. That’s why we’ve teamed up with Hawkins & Brimble, creators of premium quality grooming goods, to test some of the finest shaving products on the market.
Chief amongst these products is the British brand’s sumptuous shaving cream; a lavish, lathery luxury that will encourage you to approach your morning shave with all the care and consideration it demands.
Because shaving cream is an elder statesman of the grooming world. Rich, velvety and utterly capable, it’s one of the oldest bits of shaving kit — and remains our firm, favourite choice for a reason. And we’ve never been wholly convinced by the alternatives. We never gelled with gels, and always found oils to be a little greasy. We’ve tested (and disregarded) many moisturising foams and advanced serums. Because no bar, salve or soap even comes close to a good cream.
And one of the best creams is made by Hawkins & Brimble. At just £11 a pot, this silver-tinned shaving product combines good value and great performance; offering up the expertise and quality of Britain’s best heritage grooming brands — but at a fraction of the price.
And, most importantly, it will return that sense of ceremony to your morning routine. The tin is reassuringly tactile, with an almost-vintage feel to its sturdy design. Unscrew it, and the brand’s signature fragrance of ‘Elemi & Gingseng’ will wash over you; an aromatic touch you won’t get with cheaper, simpler foams or gels.
The depth of scent is similar to an aftershave. It starts with a gentle blend of rose and coffee — notes that will shake you awake and calm you down in equal, fragranced measure. The heart notes swell with the sweet, soothing aromas of lavender and patchouli — before a base of musk, vanilla and amber finally punch through for a strapping, masculine finish.
The off-white, whipped cream also contains ‘Coconut Acid’, a tropically-tinged wonder ingredient that can even clean the skin beneath your hair follicles. That means, once you’ve applied it with your hands — or, for even more pomp, a good quality shave brush — your skin will enjoy protection from blemishes, irritation and in-grown hairs.
It’s relaxing, too. Massage the cream gently across your face, and it will soften your hairs and condition your stubble; laying a thick foundation across which your razor can smoothly run. Take your time, and this morning ritual can be calming, reverent — almost worshipful.
It’s also an art; requiring a technical talent that squeezy foams and bright blue gels have stripped from shaving these past decades. And, if there’s one thing we at Gentleman’s Journal want to preserve, it’s the traditions and techniques of old.
So why not shake up your grooming routine this year? Stop neglecting your daily shave and instead invest both time and money into building the best bathroom cabinet you can. And Gentleman’s Journal readers can enjoy an extra 20% off using code ‘GJ20‘ at checkout. So, from a fine razor to a badger brush, make yourself a trimmer, tidier man — beginning with this smooth, pleasantly-scented cream.
Hawkins & Brimble Shaving Cream
Looking for your own signature scent? We asked the experts to explain how to find your perfect aftershave…
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