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D.R. Harris – Windsor shaving soap

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DR Harris Windsor Shave Soap
DR Harris Windsor Shave Soap

D.R. Harris & Co., by Royal Warrant pharmacists to Her Majesty the Queen, have recently come up with Windsor, a shaving soap with a nice citrusy, leathery scent with a bit of pepper and vetyver, and patchouli. A nice “cologne-y” scent, the pepper provides a good bit of zing to the aroma. At least when you’re sniffing the soap directly.
As happens far too often, the scent is too weak. It’s essentially undetectable when lathered up, being completely over-powered by the smell of my (admittedly new) brush. I can’t really say I’m surprised, however, I’ve been quite disappointed so far with the strength of every hard soap I’ve tried from any of the British soap-makers. The creams have been far better in that regard, although certainly not always (I’m looking at you TOBS Eton College).
As for the shave quality, it was nice. Nothing to write home about, but certainly of the quality you’d expect from one of the big boys. It lathered up thickly and easily, with what seemed to be a fairly wide “sweet spot” for amount of water that would produce both an acceptable thickness of lather as well as good glide.

  • 8/10 Scent Pleasantness
  • 3/10 Scent Strength
  • 8/10 Quality of Lather

It can be found for $40 in a bowl, or for $25 (Amazon affiliate link) for just the refill.

Overall, I’m giving it a 6/10. Again, with the usual caveat that if you’re not all that concerned about the scent while shaving that it might be worth a shot, but even in that case there’s better soaps that give better shaves out there.
Ingredients: Potassium palmate, Sodium tallowate, Sodium palmate, Sodium palm kernelate, Aqua, Potassium palm kernelate, Glycerin, Parfum, Sodium Chloride, Petrolatum, Palm Kernel acid, Orthotolyl biguanide, Linalool, Limonene, Farnesol, Citral Tetrasodium etidronate, Pentasodium pentetate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Cl 77891.



5 thoughts on “D.R. Harris – Windsor shaving soap”

  1. Believe me, there is no performance loss with the artisan soaps… All of them have performance equal or better than the big name chemical laden products.

    1. Agreed, however do some checking around though. Some artisan soaps are wonderful with the right balance of oils, tallow, glycerin and other good ingredients. These soaps from the better known artisans match up well against high end soaps from prestigious names.
      Some artisan soaps though are made by people who are not involved in Traditional shaving and these have more of a bath soap quality which is mostly lather and no protection.
      Search out on the forums and you will find out very quickly the artisans who make high quality soaps many of which are at a great price.

  2. I’m amazed at all the questionable chemicals present in all of these soaps and creams. It’s impossible to tell the amounts used, but at least they’re mostly at the bottom of the ingredient list, implying they are relatively minimal.
    I’ll bet these venerable British “pharmacies” never added these pollutants in the 1800’s.
    It makes you appreciate some of the smaller soap makers who use primarily “natural” ingredients. For me, I’ll trade a bit of performance for product safety (and my health) any day.

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