After receiving a few parcels of soaps and such in the mail recently, this morning I reached for the KnockOut Shave Cotton soap to sample first. Amidst the doldrums of winter, I’m hoping to evoke the “adventure and freedom you enjoy while on vacation” as the KnockOut Shave website describes their Cotton soap. My face is feeling a little chapped, perhaps from winter’s bite, but I’m looking forward to this shave. I’ve heard good things about KnockOut Shave in general and am excited to give their soap a go.
Merkur Classic 1904 42c Safety Razor
Crystal Israeli Personna Razor Blade
KnockOut Shave Cotton Shaving Soap
Semogue Owners Club Boar Brush
Fine Accoutrements Platinum Aftershave
That was perhaps my freshest feeling shave to date. I began by opening the tin of KnockOut Shave soap and loaded my Semogue Owners Club boar brush that had been soaking for about 10 minutes in a vessel of hot tap water. As I swirled my brush on the puck as usual, I noticed a dense paste loading onto the bristle with limited foaming. This is rather different from many shaving soaps I have sampled as it is not infrequent to have a fair amount of loose, light, foam build-up on the puck sometimes overflowing a bit. This soap loading experience was a pleasant change as I feel I used the right amount of product without wasting any in overflow and making a mess.
While my Semogue Owners Club brush is still in the process of breaking in and has a larger knot than my Semogue 1250, it performed splendidly as I face lathered the KnockOut Shave Cotton soap. I was able to build a good dense lather with a few dips of the brush into a pool of hot tap water. The lather was fairly slick and my Merkur 1904 glided across my face with ease. I performed my usual two-pass shave, one pass with the growth of my whiskers and one pass across the stubble pattern. Lovely as there was no drying and plenty of protection from the KnockOut Cotton lather.
The Merkur 1904 is a smidgen more aggressive than my Edwin Jagger DE89 Kelvin and cut close and smooth with the second shave on a Crystal blade. I appreciate the classic design of the Merkur 1904 handle, and the nickel plating is brilliant. By the second pass, I felt a minor sting as I painted additional lather on my face. I think this is due to my face being a bit chapped from this harsh winter weather and the frequent high winds we have been having nightly. There was plenty of dense lather left in the brush to finish my shave with a touch-up. I may have overdone the touching-up though, as I opened a weeper just underneath my lower lip. Not to worry.
The scent of KnockOut Shave Cotton soap off the puck evoked a memory of a fresh load of clean laundry. This is not to say it smelt soapy or detergent-like. Rather, it smelled like donning a freshly starched cotton shirt recently picked-up from the cleaners. After building my face lather, the scent shifted a bit. Imagine that airy fragrance that your cloths have after hanging to dry out in the summer sun. That’s it, that’s the clean and crisp aroma. Delightful, and exactly what I wanted this cold winter’s morning.
Toweling off the remnant soap from my face was a breeze and there was no left over residue or scent from the KnockOut Shave soap. My face felt soft and supple as the post-shave was clean. I reached for the Fine Accoutrements Platinum aftershave splash to finish the shave. A couple dashes in my palms then rubbed into my face. The experience with Fine aftershave splash is remarkable. The initial searing of the alcohol on my facial skin and a rush of menthol in my nostrils subsided in 5-10 seconds leaving behind a light, smoky-citrus fragrance. My skin tightened-up a bit and felt soft and smooth. The perfect end to a crisp and clean shave.
Closeness – 4
Irritation – 5
Wounds – 4
Overall – 4.33 Good clean shave!
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