A perfect shave with Crown King Sun Down shaving soap and the iKon X3
I received a package of Crown King’s new Sun Down shaving soap and aftershave splash, along with a sample of Sun Down aftershave balm and Sun Down stick deodorant (which has an interesting formula that includes alum, which strikes me as an idea well worth trying: alum is sometimes used by itself as a deodorant because of its antiseptic properties). These were complimentary—a seasonal gift to various customers.
I find Crown King and Phoenix Artisan shaving soaps to be excellent in terms of lather quality and skin feel, and they also leave my skin feeling very nice. Fragrances are so much YMMV that I don’t comment much on them, but the Sun Down fragrance is interesting. The note enclosed with the gift read in part, “Sun Down is my take on a very classic aftershave splash from the 60’s (63-69), Gillette’s Sun Up. I have been working on this scent for almost a year now with much trial and error—mostly error—but finally success, which was well worth the effort. . . the scent: Talc, Oakmoss, Lemon, Pettigrain, Bergamot, Lavender, Rose, Claary Sage, Vetiver, and Sandalwood.”
I used the RazoRock Italian Flag synthetic, and was pleased immediately by the soap: brush easily loaded, the lather thick, creamy, and slick. Although the Crown King formula is vegan, it feels very like a tallow soap. Sun Down is not yet up on the Phoenix Artisan site, but assuming that he uses his usual Crown King formula, the ingredients are:
Potassium Stearate, Glycerin, Potassium Cocoate, Aqua, Potassium Kokumate, Sodium Lactate, Potassium Shea Butterate, Potassium Castorate, Sodium Stearate, Potassium Cocoa Butterate, Potassium Avocadoate, Parfum [Fragrance]
That list is specifically from Holliday shaving soap (not a typo or seasonal reference: it refers to Doc Holliday). Note the various oils: Kokum butter, shea butter, castor oil, cocoa butter, and avocado oil. No wonder my skin feels nice. (Not all the Crown King soaps use this ingredient list: Lump of Coal shaving soap (an obvious gift idea for the curmudgeons in the family) includes also mica and activated charcoal, an ingredient also used in Standard Razors Cement shaving soap, made for them by LA Shaving Soap Company.
I had no troubles at all in the shave itself: a well-prepped two-day stubble is child’s play for the X3, and I had a perfect BBS result, all the more pleasant for how nice my skin felt.
A splash of Sun Down aftershave splash finished job perfectly. Sun Down has a light menthol content, so it is still well within the pleasant range (about as mentholated as, say Alt-Innsbruck aftershave splash).
I’ll shave again soon so I can try the aftershave balm. Eddy from Australia recommended the Alt-Eleven aftershave balm, and though in general I don’t like balms, I like that one a lot: very nice fragrance and feel and quickly is absorbed and dries, leaving the skin smooth and refreshed. A look at the ingredients provides some reasons for the excellent performance and feel.
I didn’t use the deodorant today, but will tomorrow. I am pleased that it is not an antiperspirant. You might take a look at the deodorants. I was looking for the Sun Down to post its ingredients, and saw a couple I think I might get: Cavendish:
Coconut Oil, Beeswax, Cocoa Butter, Arrowroot Powder, Shea Butter, Sodium Bicarbonate, Zinc Oxide, Organic Non GMO Corn Starch, Kaolin Clay, Organic Avocado Oil, Cape Aloe Powder, Essential Oils and/or Fragrance
Adding potassium alum to that formula should produce a long-lasting deodorant.