Does scent matter?

L'Occitane Cade smells great, but once you wash it off, it's gone.

Of course it does. Assuming you can smell it.

When it comes to colognes and aftershaves, scents can define a man. But what about shaving soaps and shaving creams? If you do a good job washing it off, in most cases, the scent is gone.  Right?

Mantic59 himself told me, “Warm, fragrant lather while concentrating on the shaving experience is something I really get into, almost like meditation.”

I can see that. Certainly I don’t want to shave with something that smells unpleasant, and in fact, some of the menthol creams I’ve tried have been just too strong.

But since the lovely smell of L’Occitane Cade, for example, is gone by the time I apply witch hazel, I’d actually rather use a neutral or mildly scented soap or cream. Even one that’s unscented. Then, I can go to town on a bay rum aftershave or a cologne that will stick with me all day. I sometimes find myself wishing that some of these great soaps and creams did come in an EDT, actually, like Cade. But they don’t.

So for me, no, scents aren’t a game-changer. I’ll take performance over smell any day of the week.

That’s just me, though. What say you? Does the scent of your shaving cream or soap really matter?

Andy Tarnoff (43 Posts)

Sometimes snarky, occasionally suspicious, usually funny (at least in his own mind), Andy uses his blog space mostly as a written catharsis for the numerous, unrelated topics swirling around in his mildly OCD head. Andy is the publisher and co-founder of, a digital media company he started in 1998.

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  1. I am one of the guys who likes the smell of their soap to linger on the skin after washing. I think the best ones for a lasting fragrance are Palmolive Soap and Wright’s Original Coal Tar Soap. Let’s face it: The vague scent of soap on a man’s skin after washing and shaving can be a major turn-on, much more so than wearing strong aftershaves and colognes. Women have a much more discerning sense of smell than men do and most women dislike strong fragrances. When a man smells of clean, fresh soap and his own natural musky aroma this is often more than enough to drive women wild without the need to apply aftershave or spray on eau de toilette after a wash. If you must use a fragrance after your soap wash: select your scent very carefully and ONLY use two sprays either side of the neck, at the most. Over-applying smells unbearable and drives people away instead of attracting them.

  2. @Steve Faragher,

    Thanks for the recommendation. I decided to place an order after confirming that they will ship to the USA. I will post a review after I receive my order and test it out.

    I ordered a set that includes a shaving brush and the jug of Goats milk shaving soap (Sandalwood) it cost me a little under $16 total including the shipping (post)

  3. oh yeah try these people too on ebay, local soap producer who uses goats milk, its lovely stuff
    and they will post to the States

  4. I mainly use arko which I think smells of old fashioned soap, whatever than means, a lot of people dislike it claiming to be “industrial smelling ” but despite the fact it isn’t promoted on its smell (do they actually advertise this stuff), the clean smell manages to cut through any cologne or after shave put on afterwards. Smelly soaps are more linked to the effects of the additive on the skin and the process not necessarily intending to linger after the third pass.

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