Skip to content

Shannons Soaps NIL vs. Wholly Kaw Bare Siero

Listen to this article

This seventh first-round head-to-head (or beard-to-beard) evaluation in Sharpologist’s scent-free soap competition features Shannons Soaps NIL Shaving Soap versus Wholly Kaw(R) Bare Siero. In this series I’m focusing on overall shaving performance so neither a soap’s scent nor its cost is a factor in the review.

The Contestants

Shannons Soaps NIL Shaving Soap

From the website: Sensitive skin, welcome to shaving nirvana.  Free of added fragrance, but still packed with ingredients that give you a great, comfortable shave.


Tallow, kokum butter, avocado oil, cocoa butter, shea butter, stearic acid, glycerin, lanolin, coconut oil, potassium hydroxide, sodium hydroxide. 

Wholly Kaw Bare Serio

From the website: Unscented tallow soap in Siero base. Hops Extract is added to provide biological activities such as anti-inflammatory, anti-angiogenic providing relief for inflammation and prevention of spider veins. Omega-6 Linoleic Acid and Omega-3 Linolenic Acid, the only long chain fatty acid which the body needs but cannot synthesize have long been recognized as essentials for healthy looking skin. Contains no parabens, no chemical sulfates, and no dye.


Potassium Stearate, Sodium Stearate, Water, Donkey Milk, Water Buffalo Milk, Donkey Milk Whey, Water Buffalo Milk Whey, Glycerin, Potassium Tallowate, Sodium Tallowate, Potassium Ricinoleate, Sodium Ricinoleate, Potassium Shea Butterate, Sodium Shea Butterate, Garcinia Indica (Kokum) Butter, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Butter, Hydrolyzed Linseed, Linoleic Acid, Linolenic Acid, Humulus Lupulus (Hops) Extract, Lanolin.

Overall Impressions

Both of these soaps gave very good shaves and I would recommend them both. In the end, though, one scored slightly higher on several factors and that tipped the scale.

Points awarded for each factor:

1: Poor

2: Fair

3: Good

4: Very good

5: Excellent

Feature: Lack of Scent

Shannons Soaps NIL 5
Wholly Kaw Bare Siero5

Nada, nichts, rien–I couldn’t detect a scent from either soap, 

Feature: Easy lathering

Shannons Soaps NIL 4
Wholly Kaw Bare Siero4.5

Both lathered well in my soft water, but the Siero took it up a notch with fast, voluminous lather using either a badger or synthetic brush.

Feature: Moisture retention

Shannons Soaps NIL 4.25
Wholly Kaw Bare Siero4.25

The lather from both soaps retained its moisture for the entire duration of my (slightly) slow shaves. 

Feature: Lubrication

Shannons Soaps NIL 4.25
Wholly Kaw Bare Siero4.5

Excellent lubrication. All my test shaves, most of which were on two-day stubble, were smooth.

Feature: Protection

Shannons Soaps NIL 4.25
Wholly Kaw Bare Siero4.25

I’m starting to sound repetitive but both soaps gave me irritation-free shaves.

Feature: Post-shave Skin Feeling

Shannons Soaps NIL 3.5
Wholly Kaw Bare Siero4.25

The Shannons NIL left my skin feeling neutral: not unusually dry or taut but I didn’t sense any unusual degree of post-shave moisture, either. The Siero did a better job of moisturizing during and after the shave and left my face feeling nicely smooth.

Final Scores

Some soaps I’ve reviewed in this series were rough on my skin, but I liked both of these soaps and they produced some of the best scores among the products I’ve rated so far. The main difference I experienced between them was that the Siero performed slightly better for me in a few categories, but otherwise you wouldn’t go wrong using either one.

Winner: Wholly Kaw Bare Siero by a score of 26.75 to 25.25 over Shannons Soaps NIL.

Competition Recap

Previous weeks’ winners are highlighted in bold:

Round 1:

Mike’s Natural Soaps Unscented by a score of 20.0 to 19.75 over Oleo Soapworks Unscented Duck Fat Canard Shaving Soap.

Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements Scentsless (Formula CK-6) by a score of 27.5 to 27.0 over Declaration Grooming Unscented.

Talbot Shaving Trust by a score of 24.0 to 22.5 over Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements 

Taylor of Old Bond Street Traditional by a score of 23.75 to 22.5 over Martin De Candre Nature.

Wholly Kaw(R) Bare Naked (Tallow) by a score of 21.0 to 20.5 over Wet Shaving Products (WSP) Rustic Shaving Soap Au Naturel.

Zingari Man Unscented Sego by a score of 26.5 to 23.25 over Chiseled Face Groomatorium Natural Fragrance Free.

Up Next

Captain’s Choice Unscented versus Noble Otter Bare

Ed McCarthy

Ed McCarthy