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THE TOTALLY SUPER-BEST INCREDIBLY FANTASTIC AFTER-SHAVE BALM

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THE TOTALLY SUPER-BEST INCREDIBLY FANTASTIC AFTER-SHAVE BALM

Postby JRTASTER » Tue May 21, 2013 1:54 pm

Ok, guys, which after-shave balm do you recommend??

Reading the SOTD Forum, it seems many of you use an after-shave soother or balm, instead of or in addition to a splash. But it's hard to tell how the products mentioned might meet my criteria and be compatible with my skin type.

Here are some of the qualities/requirements I am seeking:
Fragrance: can be lightly scented, but I'm not looking for
a substitute for an after-shave or cologne
Texture: hate oily/greasy heavy products; think ultra-light
Absorbability: must absorb quickly and completely, no residue
Efficacy: hey, it's got to work and relieve/heal light razor burn
and soothe and "comfort" the post-shave skin
Availability: not interested in obscure products available only from
Dominican Monks in a Croatian monastery. Mainstream online
vendors or retail, please
Old vs New: while there may have been a number of revolutionary
new and improved products out there, please don't rule out the
tried and true performers I have overlooked
Price: while $100/oz items are out, cost/price are related to real,
discernible efficacy is ok.

I have the dreaded combination skin-type: oily in the "T-Zone," moderately less oily elsewhere. Even at my age, breakouts/blemishes aren't unknown.

Most days I splash on the Speick lotion and it's ok. RazoRock aftershave wax just didn't do a great job of skin-soothing and it felt a tad greasy on application. What scent there was, I used the "original" version, wasn't particularly pleasant to my nose. Other than these two products I have no other recent experience with after-shave soothers.

I know this topic has been kicked around before, but new items appear frequently and SMF-ers are always out there in trying and re-evaluating products. You are also generous in sharing forthright and "intelligent" opinions and advice.

Love to have your recommendations.

Thanks,

jr/John
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Postby TRBeck » Tue May 21, 2013 1:58 pm

Clinique Post-Shave Healer. Gordon was the one who put me onto this stuff a few years back, and while I don't need it anymore and therefore don't use it, it is a terrific, fairly-priced product and fulfills all of your requirements.
Regards,
Tim

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Postby jww » Tue May 21, 2013 2:15 pm

The Body Shop Razor Relief made with a Macca Root base. Been using it for years and it's been the best for me. ymmv.
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Postby gsgo » Tue May 21, 2013 3:09 pm

John,

I am going to recomend Lucido Skin Conditioner, it's a Japanese product available from Royal Shave and numerous on-line sources as well as some Japanese Markets (we have a Mitsuwa here is Chicago where I get mine from). It's a scentless lotion that feels great and has taken the number one slot in my balm collection.

They also make a splash after shave which is a no-sting menthol bomb that is a great way to finish a shave.

I use these together or seperately depending on what I need after my shave and find them to be very effective on anything you might throw at them.
Good shaving,

Gary
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Postby Esoteric83 » Tue May 21, 2013 3:55 pm

I'm on Tube no. 3 of Kyoku. This has never happened to me before, where I buy the same AS product three times consecutively. I have used several of the modern mens lines offering, many of the traditional firms offerings, and this is hands down the best I've encountered.

Key contributors:

Scent - Very little, mild herbal citrus that fades completely on application and will not get in the way of anything else.

Soothing & healing - Very nice. Also, it kills any redness or irritation quickly. It also helps with preventing bumps for those prone to them.

Texture - Very fluid balm that does a very good job of providing hydration, but leaves zero residue or shine. This is a huge selling point for me.

Price - Around $12 puts on the lower end of the premium brands, but near the top of the mass market stuff.

Availability - Several online sites carry the line and it is available at Shoppers in Canada. I just hope they didn't muck with the formula to meet the demand a mass retail chain like shoppers would expect. I have not yet purchased any from them, so my fingers are crossed.
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Postby rsp1202 » Tue May 21, 2013 6:11 pm

I suffer similarly to John, so would go +1 to Tim's recommendation of Clinique. It was the only balm that ever worked for me, but I stopped using it a while back for reasons now obscure. John, you and I should both get some.
Ron
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Postby mikey » Tue May 21, 2013 8:16 pm

Old: Trumper Skin Food

New: Clinique Post Shave Healer

Thanks,
Mike
Last edited by mikey on Wed May 22, 2013 11:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby bernards66 » Tue May 21, 2013 9:44 pm

John, Yes, from what you wrote above the Clinique Post Shave HEALER ( not Soother ) will likely do the trick. Some of us discovered it in our desperate hunt for something similiar to the old DRH Aftershaving Milk. I take the Clinique with me whenever I travel as it's in plastic and therefore light weight and non-breakable. At home I always use DRH Pink Aftershave. It's a true liquid but low in alcohol and curiously soothing. It's an old and a simple formula but for me it works superbly.
Regards,
Gordon
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Postby Rufus » Wed May 22, 2013 4:33 am

jww wrote:The Body Shop Razor Relief made with a Macca Root base. Been using it for years and it's been the best for me. ymmv.


+1 for BS Razor Relief. I've found Crabtree & Evelyn aftershave balm equally as good; I'm currently using the West Indian Lime, which has a very light fragrance.
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Postby 95% » Wed May 22, 2013 5:15 pm

Irisch Moos and Musgo Real balms are aftershave staples for me. They meet your stated criteria in every way. Of the two, Irisch Moos has the more assertive scent, which is spicy and brisk but not long-lasting or oppressive. Highly recommended.
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Postby Thalay Sagar » Wed May 22, 2013 5:32 pm

In a balm, the best I've used is Castle Forbes Pre-shave as an aftershave. It quiets the skin better than anything I've tried, absorbs readily with no sticky feel and has no scent. A tad priecy, but a little goes a long way.
Best,
Chris

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Postby Craig_From_Cincy » Wed May 22, 2013 7:23 pm

Although it's expensive I think the AOS After Shaving Gel to be the best I've ever used. Their Balm isn't bad either, though a bit heavy for me.
Cheers,

Craig
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Postby Ken » Wed May 22, 2013 9:34 pm

I agree about the AOS gel. I've used it for years. My recollection is that it was the first AOS product I bought even before there was a professional AOS label on the bottle. I also agree about the D.R. Harris Pink and the Clinique. Let's not forget about the older version of the D.R. Harris Aftershave Milk: Still the best in my opinion (and I have most of one bottle that I am hoarding).

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Postby brothers » Thu May 23, 2013 5:05 am

I've used up several (small) tubes of 444 after shave balm from Portugal. It just works for me!
Gary
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Postby Janus » Thu May 23, 2013 7:44 am

I finish every shave with Musgo Real balm without fail. No urge to even try anything else, either. Everything else in my shaving regimen I vary from time to time, but not this.
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Postby bernards66 » Thu May 23, 2013 8:48 pm

Ken, Well, the old DRH Milk was the very best, I agree and I too have a little bit left that I just hoard...hardly ever use, cause when it's gone I know that it is truly GONE ( quiet weeping and sniffling ).
Regards,
Gordon
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Postby Craig_From_Cincy » Thu May 23, 2013 9:01 pm

After having a rough shave yesterday my neck was really irritated. I was shopping in Kroger after work and went down the shave aisle for kicks and giggles to see what type of mass marketed A/S balms were in stock. I took a chance on Nivea Sensitive Skin A/S Balm (it was the only one that had some natural ingredients) and I was very pleasantly surprised. Nivea was soothing, not heavy or greasy, completely unscented, and really helped heal my neck. And it was only $6 for a rather large bottle. I'm going to use this for a while and see if it's as good as it seems to be.
Cheers,

Craig
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Postby JRTASTER » Sat May 25, 2013 10:36 am

Well, thank you all for the informative and helpful comments. Plenty of (skin) food for thought!

Here's my tentative game-plan: My niece generously gave me a Macy's Gift Card for Christmas, begging for redemption. Since Clinique Skin Supplies for Men is available at Macy's online, the Post Shave Healer recommended more often than others, will be my first choice. I may also pick up their Facial Soap and/or Scruffing Lotion while at it.

My past experience with the Nivea Sensitive wasn't fabulous, if my porous memory serves me right, but it's an inexpensive and easily available back up, especially since there's a CSS 20%-off coupon for next weekend.

I am intrigued by Wendell's Maca Root suggestion, but will hold off til the Clinique has it's chance to prove itself. Probably needs to be purchased online as their nearest store, as with Macy's, is in Hyannis, a good hour's drive for me.

The use of the C&F PreShave as an aftershave balm is intriguing; however, I definitely remember using the Lime A/S balm and being decidedly underwhelmed, as I have with other C&F products, especially considering their price points....probably in the minority on this view.

AOS Gel, mmm! The consistency/feel of gels has always been a plus for me, as long as the product doesn't leave a sticky/tacky after feel. Definitely in the mix for Plan B should it be needed. At that price it would need to be a great performer.

Thanks for all the other suggestions and advice. Most generous and helpful!

Remember our Heroes this weekend! We owe so much to their Sacrifices

jr/John

p.s. full disclosure: my preference for Clinique is no doubt encouraged in part by the fact that I long ago worked for its parent company and was there when Skin Supplies for Men was launched...was also a willing test subject for a few items, including a benzocaine-laced Shave Cream. Does it still contain a light topical anesthetic??

John
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Postby bernards66 » Sat May 25, 2013 9:51 pm

John, No idea regarding that question I'm afraid ( chuckle ). But I can second the AoS aftershave gel as being one of the few A/S products that worked for me ( I used the unscented version ). I'm not sure that it's exactly the same product today that it was back when I was using it ( Ken would be able to answer that question ) but it was soothing, unobtrusive, and fast absorbing leaving little residue behind. It was, however, quite expensive even back then and has undoubtedly become considerably more so if the price they are now asking for their hard shave soaps is any indication. I quit using it when I discovered the old DRH Milk and have never returned to it as I prefer the Harris's Pink or the Clinique PSH. But I do think it is/was a fine product and that it would probably fit the bill for you based on your original post.
Regards,
Gordon
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Postby Ken » Tue May 28, 2013 6:50 pm

It's changed slightly, but not much. It is really more of a thick liquid than a typical gel, but still has more body than a splash. When I bought it the first time, the person who waited on me was Eric Malka himself, who at the time worked the floor in the Madison Avenue store. That's how long ago it was.

I much prefer it to the Balm, which is more like a moisturizer without sun block.

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