Gillette Diplomat (I think) and Van Yulay Club Humidor
I really like the little Omega S10005 S-Brush: a soft and interesting knot. Some regard it as superseded by the Plissoft (angel-hair) brushes, but the S10005 works perfectly well and feels good on the face. I’m keeping it and will continue to recommend it as a cost-effective purchase: $8 is not bad for an excellent brush.
Once again I got a really wonderful lather from a Van Yulay soap, and that’s been true regardless of the formula (e.g., with or without tallow) and fragrance. The Club Humidor ingredients do include tallow:
Stearic Acid, Aloe Vera, Coconut Fatty Acid, Glycerin, Palm Stearic, Potassium Hydroxide, Coconut-Emu-Castor-Lanolin-Tallow-Olive-Argan-Oils, Cocoa & Kokum Butter, Calendula, Extracts, Poly Quats, Sodium Lactate, Allantoin, Silica, Liquid Silk, Bentonite Clay, Essential Oil, and Fragrance.
The fragrance, though, was faint, even elusive. The description: “Earthy tones of tobacco with rosemary, citronella notes grounded by cedar, that finishes into an amber base of violet and a touch of warm leather and tobacco.” Maybe, but it was so faint I could not get any of that—and that, of course, is the benefit of using samples: I now know that a tub of this will take a back seat to a tub of Van Yulay soap whose fragrance I like (e.g., Achilles).
Still, the great lather set up a fine shave. And I have a fine razor from the collection. I picked out this razor to sell, but then I noticed the two-tone gold finish and became intrigued:
The identity of the razor is, I think, a Gillette Diplomat: basically a Gillette 1940’s Aristocrat with parts of the handle knurled that were smooth on the Aristocrat—namely, the section just above the tightening knob and the section at the top of the handle. (The nickel-plated version of the Diplomat is the President.) The tightening knob and the section at the top of the handle are in a lighter gold, and the guard appears to be as well.
It’s an extraordinarily handsome razor, so I held it back to do a parting shave, and I’m glad I did: it gives an absolutely superb shave: BBS in three passes with a Personna Lab Blue blade (for me—another brand may work better for you).
If you know your Gillettes and are able to confirm or correct my identification, please leave a comment. I’m also interested to know more about this two-tone finish.
Three smooth passes, greatly assisted by the high quality of the lather, and then a rinse, dry, and good splash of Phoenix Artisan Cavendish to complete the tobacco theme—or, given the faintness of the fragrance from the soap, to establish it. Cavendish’s own fragrance is quite present and very pleasant.