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Vetiver Review Festival Part 2: LASSCO

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Our fourth bold vetiver (first, second, third) is an interesting hybrid, featuring a solid vetiver base accompanied by another 11 (!) essential oils. My personal frustration with this soap is immense, as I have never tried so hard to make an excellently scented soap work despite mediocre technical performance and significant irritation. After no less than 5 excruciating shaves, I have abandoned the effort, but would still recommend the soap on the basis on the quality of its scent and ingredients, or at least I would recommend it to those whose faces are a bit more indomitable than mine.

“Bespoke # 1”, Los Angeles Shaving Soap Company ($28 for 4.5 oz tub of soap) Sample Buying Sources:
Ingredients: (From mfgr website): Vegetable Stearic Acid, Distilled Water, Coconut Oil, Potassium Hydroxide, Vegetable Glycerin, Vetiver Essential Oil, 35 million year old (approx.) Himalayan Amber Oil (in Sunflower Oil), Frankincense Essential Oil, Opopanax (Sweet Myrrh) Essential Oil, Clove Essential Oil, Pepper Essential Oil, Bergamot Essential Oil, Patchouli Essential Oil, Cedar Essential Oil, Vanilla Extract, Anise Extract, Labdanum Absolute (in Sunflower Oil).
My first LA Shaving Soap Company (hereafter “LASSCO”) product used was “Myrkivor” and I was stunned and amazed. Excellent smell, all essential oils, made with beer as a base, and a creamy, protective lather accompanied by an excellent post-shave, and at the eminently reasonable price of $18. I figured I was in trustworthy artisanal hands, and splurged, ordering another three soaps from that artisan, Bespoke and “Woody Lavender” & “Hollywood Romance.”  The honeymoon ended rapidly and painfully….

Company Intro

LASSCO is another shave soap company founded by a lawyer / perfume enthusiast. (The other one I know of is Barrister & Mann, mentioned a few reviews ago…). Much like B&M, the origin story here is that a sensitive faced shaver became disillusioned with what was then available (2012) and decided to make his own soap and scents.
Unlike B&M, John, the LASSCO founder, set out to emulate the Martin De Candre formula. By many accounts he succeeded (more on my opinion later…) and LASSCO confidently published its formula and technique online so that other aspiring soapmakers could follow suit.
John is a dedicated vegan and so makes only non-tallow based soaps for ethical reasons. For somewhat murkier reasons, he also refuses to use fragrance oils in his compositions, and sticks to using only essential oils. This of course adds cost to his soaps (no $11 budget options here…) and, as John himself admits, limits his scent palette to a not insignificant degree.
LASSCO, unlike most other artisans, seems to be keeping a low profile with its operations in recent years. There have been virtually no “limited” or “special” editions, no seasonals, etc and no soap releases in 2015 at all. As a matter of fact, LASSCO has even discontinued two soaps from its 2014 additions, keeping all five of its 2013 lineup of scents, and retaining 3 other 2014 additions, and just recently added a soap for 2016, so the artisan has 89 soaps available for sale currently. There have been some crossovers, into cross-branding sales of expensive SS razors (made by another artisan), but nothing approaching the usual vertical product leveraging of scents that other artisans have manifested in recent industry history, so no pre-shaves, bath soaps, colognes, candles, etc, just the soaps and a beard oil.
Bespoke has an interesting origin tale: the word “Bespoke” means “made to order” and implies luxury and selectivity. In this case, a Reddit shaving group member won a contest and provided a list of his favorite notes to LASSCO’s John, who then worked with the winner to develop a scent whose high price would then supply a portion of its sales revenue to a cancer charity. This is a nice idea, and the fellow who won apparently had very decent taste in fragrance, based on the proof smelled in Bespoke.


This is a small, rather ugly off white plastic tub, smaller diameter than even Catie’s Bubbles. It is pretty well filled, though not all the way to the brim, with 4.5 ounces of product. You can just barely load your brush up neatly, if you exercise civilized restraint and a brush considerably smaller than say an Omega 10048.
All ingredients are listed, including a specific list of the Essential Oils (EO) used. This is nice, but as usual there are no scent notes listed, so unless “Bespoke # 1” speaks to you on some non-literate level, a buyer in a brick and mortar store would have no idea as to what was being featured here, though the list of EOs does help comprehension.
Tub is not translucent, but does at least screw apart and together precisely and reliably. Labeling appears waterproof and durable.
2 of 3 points awarded; larger diameter tub with less voluminous loading would be preferred, along with translucence for easy product remainder estimating, and some kind of scent descriptor would be nice.

Scent In The Tub

Per the artisan’s website: “This is a very earthy scent, with a vetiver base augmented by amber, frankincense, sweet myrrh, pepper, clove, and cedar. If you’re one of those who treats shaving as a ritual, this soap (which includes components that have been used in incense and fragrance for millennia), should complement that nicely.”
Vetiver incense is eminently perceptible when sniffing the tub along with some woody notes. This smells a bit like Polo Green with incense notes added, and I personally could not ask for a more interesting or pleasing scent. Though vetiver is prominent, it is modified by numerous other interesting notes and the quality of ingredients used is most apparent. 2 of 2 points awarded.


Lather Ease:  Quick and easy, needing minimal water, product, and effort to produce a seemingly thick and lubricious lather. In order to get enough brush load for a three pass shave, 40 swirls with a boar or synthetic is probably overkill, but a dense badger could benefit from such effort. Loading is easy and product stays well hydrated during lathering preparation and application. LASSCO also does nicely in hard water, as I discovered on a business trip. Though not exactly as speedy of a lather producer as Martin De Candre, LASSCO is close, and certainly is the easiest and quickest soap to lather in Series Two. 5 of 5 points.
Lather Quality: Provides excellent slickness and glide, stays well hydrated. Ghost lather (persistence in lubricity after the visible layers have been shaved) is very good. Folliclevation ™ factor is excellent and the painful scarlet red ruin of my face after a typical Bespoke shave had not a milligram of stubble on it, resembling an atomic bomb testing site in its desolation.
However, cushion is far less than adequate. Shaving with a Standard or Weber razor loaded with a blue Personna with Bespoke as one’s soap of choice is like wearing a handgun caliber certified ballistic vest and being shot with a 20 mm autocannon slug. Even after my first shave of agony, when I used less aggressive razors and gentler blades thereafter, I never got a completely irritation free shave from Bespoke. Sometimes my jawline hurt, sometime my neck, always my chin and sides of my mouth would have razor burn. The pain would often last for hours and would survive multiple applications of various balms, splashes, and moisturizers. Certainly if one sought robust and persistent razor burn as a goal of shaving, Bespoke would be a masterpiece.
As mentioned, dear readers, I tried this stuff five times over the space of 6 months, using various types of razors and blades and brushes and post shaves, and never even came close to the same type of cushiony burn free experience that I’ve had from virtually every other shave soap I’ve tried, tallow and vegan. I would like to say it’s me that’s the problem, but the fact that pushes me over the edge of certainty that it’s the LASSCO formula that is to blame here is that Myrkivor and XXCIII, which both use a different base formula from LASSCO, perform perfectly fine on my face.
It should also be mentioned that Martin De Candre also works quite well on my face, offering lots of nice cushion, so the model and its emulator have utterly different effects on the same subject.
Moreover, it is important to note that I was careful to differentiate the razor burn from the redness and dryness I experienced. Sadly, due to my (mis)adventures with shaving products, I can tell the difference easily and I can state with confidence that what I experienced with Bespoke is nothing less than a soap that looked properly cushioning once applied but yet did not reliably protect my face from razor burn.
In any case, given its consistently poor buffering, and its elevated price point, I can only award 2 of 5 points to Bespoke.

Scent During Shave

This is why I endured 5 agonizing shaves. The vetiver and incense gets stronger once lathered, and the woody notes are joined by sweet amber and spices. Even as my chin began to throb, and every inch of my face turned scarlet, I thought “gee, that smells good!”.
The interesting thing is that there is a lot of vetiver in here and as I learned from my own perfume making adventure, vetiver is immensely difficult to balance in a fragrance formula, yet Bespoke manages this feat readily. Another great effect is that we get a non-smoky incense note, giving a clean earthy feel to the fragrance that nevertheless manages to be exotically transcendent at the same time. I didn’t get much patchouli and even less bergamot, but all the other scent elements claimed were apparent to my nose.
The odor is strong and persists throughout the shave. Nothing less than 5 of 5 points awarded here.


Some websites opine that fragrance oils are far more likely to cause irritation to the skin than essential oils.  Those who hold this opinion should see my face 10 minutes after I finish shaving with Bespoke…
Interestingly, there is no burning or stinging at any point during application of lather for each pass. However, by the time the first pass is done, my skin has begun to feel dry and tight, especially around the mouth, under the nose, and on the chin. Then, by the time the third pass is done, my face is normally a bright, fiery red. Of note, the redness is not seen only in the areas experiencing razor burn but is seen on every area of my face where lather was applied, even those areas that are not prone to burn, and even in those areas which do not feel either irritated or dry.
The redness lasts for roughly two hours, and my face gets puffy and swollen as well. “You look like a burn victim” was my wife’s assessment of my condition the first time I used Bespoke. After she saw me inflict this same misery on myself another four times, she may well have had other, harsher assessments which she charitably did not share with me.
The dry, tight feeling sometimes lasts for most of a day and usually for 4-5 hours. After applying balm, I then apply moisturizer, and then the useful Proraso White Pre/Post Shave Cream in the affected spots as needed every hour or so, and things gradually feel better.
So.. minus one point for the dryness, minus another point for the redness, and minus a third point for unpleasant after-effects that last for more than one hour post shave. Minus 3 point deduction overall.
Of note, I get none of this irritation from the two LASSCO soaps I’ve tried that use their second generation formula, which adds cocoa butter and avocado oil to the glycerin and stearic acid that’s supposed to be the moisturizers and protectants in the “Mark One” base. Perhaps of some significance, the coconut oil content in the reformulated base is also allegedly considerably reduced.
Of note, I get none of this irritation from the two LASSCO soaps I’ve tried that use their second generation formula, which adds cocoa butter and avocado oil to the glycerin and stearic acid that’s supposed to be the moisturizers and protectants in the “Mark One” base. Perhaps of some significance, the coconut oil content in the reformulated base is considerably reduced.
As a matter of fact, the LASSCO description for Myrkivor states: “This soap is the first to use a new soap formula from The Los Angeles Shaving Soap Company which includes avocado oil and cocoa butter, and substitutes beer for water. The result is a nice light brown soap with an excellent thick lather, and an excellent post-shave feel.” Hm. So the new formula has an excellent thick lather and excellent post shave feel. So what then does the old lather offer in those areas?  

Post Shave Feel

We are not going to spend much time here. My face, on the numerous occasions I used Bespoke, ended up with chafed sore spots from razor burn, huge swaths of dry, tight skin, and virtually every visible pore colored a crimson, lobster-like hue. I suppose there are worse post-shave feels imaginable; in my own case, both Truefitt & Hill “1805” & Taylor’s “Sandalwood” creams left my face in worse shape than Bespoke did, but “third worst shave ever” cannot really be called high praise.
The MdC style Euro minimalist template is problematic for those with dry and / or sensitive skin, as its simple base relies almost entirely on glycerin to soothe the skin. I cannot use MdC or similar base soaps without supplementing them with a balm.  I think in this area that LASSCO should have set their design goal higher, and indeed, they eventually did, beginning with Myrkivor. It would have been nice if they had revisited their older scents and reformulated these to use the new improved base.
In any case, 2 of 5 points awarded, and that is both imaginative and generous on my part I feel. “Well, if my face was not chafed, dried out, and red, then maybe Bespoke would have left me feeling only slightly worse than other soaps over the long term…”


$28 for a soap with mediocre technical performance in a key area (cushioning), a very basic minimalist ingredient formula, and no real effort at dermatological biochemistry.  This does not seem like a very good deal, even if we leave out the sensitizing issue. However, we do have a lot of high quality EO ingredients used, and an excellent smell. Plus, some of the added cost is (presumably) due to the allocation of some percentage of the sale proceeds to a worthy charity. The irksome issue, again, is that both of the newer (better) LASSCO soaps that use the improved base are cheaper than Bespoke and smell only somewhat less impressive. I am awarding 3 of 5 points here.
Total Score: 18/30 (after three point deduction for irritation). Which equals a D-.  Tough grade for me to award, as I like some of this artisan’s other chemistry work quite well, and his scents are winners across the board.
Every other iteration I’ve tried of the first generation LASSCO base (“Woody Lavender” & “Hollywood Romance”) has had similar effects on me in terms of irritation (though not as severe or long lasting) and a similar issue with “eggshell cushioning”. It seems apparent that LASSCO realized they needed to change their game up, and hence base formula Mark II.
If only LASSCO went back and redid all their first generation scents with the new base, I could easily see this being an A or A- review. Bespoke is kind of like the LASSCO flagship, and it surprises me to see it languishing with a second rate base. Moreover (and this is only my half baked theory) maybe toning down the coconut oil percentage may have led to less irritation for me (and perhaps other customers also.) It is hard to tell if the coconut oil is the culprit here, as any of the EOs could also be to blame. But as none of the other LASSCO soaps that irritated me had similar scent elements to those in Bespoke, I am guessing that the original base is at fault.
Mind you,  I realize it is hard to just change an old scent to integrate with a new base. There’s a lot of reworking and experimentation needed, and many artisans might not want to bother with all that work, especially if they have no idea how to fix the deficient base. I can see their point, but perhaps a price reduction in the old base scents might be appropriate if they are to continue with a second place and outmoded core formula. Moreover, LASSCO obviously has a second base formula available, one that fixes all of V1.0’s issues. It perplexes me then that LASSCO did not travel either route here; no difficult  conversion to the reformulated base, no (relatively) easier to make price cuts, accompanied by a “LASSCO Classic” line segmentation.
UPDATE: After most of this article was written, but before publication, John, the LASSCO artisan has indicated that CCXII was an evolutionary dead end, and will not be continued.  You can pick this excellent soap up on the maker’s website for a discount.  LASSCO shows no sign or reformulating old scents to the Myrkivor base, and indeed now has a new base in their 2016 soap, “Black Rose” that uses a formula similar to the “Bespoke” base but adds bentonite clay and activated charcoal.  So now apparently LASSCO will have three formulas: the original in most of their soaps (6 of 8), the multiple oil formula used in Myrkivor, and the new clay and charcoal formula for 2016. A braver soul than myself can test the black waters there…
Of course, not all users of this product will have this same issue. My face is more sensitive than most, and there are many online reviewers of LASSCO products that have nothing but high praise for the maker’s work, who rave of the excellent post shave feel and who (apparently) had no issues with irritation. As the old saw goes, “your mileage may vary”, and indeed it might in the case of Bespoke.
Consider this review an extended cautionary note then, especially if you have used the Creighton’s British shaving cream lineup (ToBS, T&H, GFT) and have had no issues with any of them. Even so, trying a sample of LASSCO Bespoke before investing 28 clams might be prudent. Though the artisan does not supply samples from his own site, some online vendors who sell the line do offer samples for low prices.
So then, if you have a face that by nature is resilient, imperturbable, and well moisturized, Bespoke (and the other Generation One LASSCO soaps) may be for you. I end with the same statement I began with: this soap frustrates me. It is one of the greatest and most complex scents in modern artisanal wet shaving and yet to me it is utterly unusable.  I hope LASSCO will one day reformulate Bespoke and others to match a newer, gentler, kinder base, and I look forward to seeing how the company will grow and evolve its excellent scent line into superior formulas.

Into My Rotation?

Ha, are you kidding? After all that pain and suffering? Well, actually, I am tempted… but…No.

Craig K

Craig K

14 thoughts on “Vetiver Review Festival Part 2: LASSCO”

  1. I have relished these thorough reviews of vetiver soaps and am really excited to try a number of them. I am really quite picky when it comes to shaving soaps and creams, usually if the scent is too harsh with fragrance so have ended up tossing more than putting them into rotation. I can appreciate the author’s sensitive skin, but just wanted to offer that I had no similar reaction with razor burn, redness, discomfort, or dry or tight skin. In my use this soap was lovely. The aroma, while more spicy than I’d typically go for, is rich and luxurious – Earthy with a Vetiver base and most noticeable with frankincense and myrrh. Thanks for the great reviews!

    1. Thanks Nick!
      To paraphrase Tolstoy: “Happy faces are all alike; every unhappy face is unhappy in its own way.” It’s hard for me to predict how or what will irritate me, but in general I’ve found fragrance oils alone are unlikely to produce anything too severe or lasting. Some base formulas, especially those with one of the two or three common preservative mixes found in creams, tend to cause more lasting problems, as do high concentrations of certain essential oils.
      I’m glad you are OK with the LASSCO base – the artisan has some excellent scents to offer, especially Woody Lavender & Topanga Fougere (I tried both and liked the scents quite a bit, though had similar sensitivity to the formula). And the new “Black Rose” sounds great also. Enjoy!

  2. What excellent writing!
    I just finished a tub of AoS and was enjoying it while, at the same time, mad at myself for buying the ‘mall brand’ instead of something fancier.
    Replaced the AoS with Castle Forbes and the CS lime scent smells like a green lifesaver! Eww.
    I am not at all fixated on scent unless it’s bad.
    Craig – there are hundreds of reasons the LASSCO product may have irritated your face, but I’d say that what you describe is very similar to a contact dermatitis. I’d recommend that you use products with less than 11 scents in them in order to be able to figure out which one you are reacting to.
    Thanks for trying it 5 times, you’ve made me feel like my undying optimism isn’t an exclusive trait!
    Yours, A Wade MD

    1. Thanks Dr Wade! Hope is the thing with feathers after all, and at least I haven’t grown a beak yet…
      The odd thing is that I get the exact same reaction from LASSCO Woody Lavender, a much simpler soap with only four ingredients in the mix. And I am fine with LASSCO Myrkivor which uses 9 ingredients. And the EOs used by LASSCO are the same ones used by many other artisans in soap scents that I have no problem with.
      If I had to guess, I would say it’s either the concentration of the essential oils (if you don’t use fragrance oils to support them, you tend to need a lot of EO to make a strong smelling complex scent) or some functional element in the LASSCO Version 1 base that raises hell on my poor visage.
      I am slowly but surely building a kind of geography of irritants for myself. Dihydromyrcenol (“fresh scent”) & calone (“aquatic scent”) are big issues for me, as is one of the main artificial sandalwood replacers (though not natural sandalwood itself.) Some stuff that irritates the hell out of many like cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and almond oil are fine for me though. It’s quite the jigsaw puzzle, but necessary to explore the world of complex wet shaving scents. I think of it as suffering for my art! : D

    1. Thanks Mel!
      As mentioned in the review, I like the company, but as competition mounts in the market, we as buyers need to expect more from soaps, especially at higher price points. A year ago, Bespoke’s issues might have been more acceptable, but in today’s market with so many soaps offering great scents and performance at lower price points, I could not really give Bespoke an unqualified good grade.
      As mentioned though, LASSCO does work for many, so if you have a tough face and like the scent profile, you might want to track down a sample to give it a try.

  3. I am new to traditional wet shaving (3-4 months) and want to try samples of some of the better shaving creams. So far, I’ve used Dr. Bronners Lavender shave gel, Truefitt and Hill Sandlewood cream and Mike’s naturals soaps. I’m wanting to experience what “really good” is so as to have standard to compare to. So, Craig K, would you please make some recommendations of a few to try? Three or four would be a good start.

    1. Hi Al! Welcome to wet shaving, sorry about your wallet!
      I notice you list two creams and one soap in your mix of products used so far. I personally am not too fond of creams as I find they tend to dry out my face more than soaps and also tend to have shorter shelf lives (a problem when you accumulate too many of them!). If you have a less dry face and a smaller collection, you can focus more on creams.
      I’ll recommend a few creams I like and a few “representative” soaps that will introduce you to the higher quality points.
      1) St James of London: This is a cream that almost agrees with my dry sensitive face, but does not quite make it. Still, the scents are very well done, and unlike most of the Brit soaps made by Creighton, (Taylor, T&H, Trumpers) St James uses a tad of imagination in their ingredient list, making them better than most of the usual suspect creams. You can either try one of the nicely packaged glass tubs (my favorite is this one):
      or you can order a neat cheap little sampler pack straight from the company that includes all of their scents, though not necessarily as creams:
      2) NancyBoy: Great scents and ingredients, agrees with my face, but their 9 month estimate of product shelf life is pretty darn accurate, and you can only order the cream from the company’s own site.
      If you want to try, join their buyers club (for free) and save 15% on the price, just register a new email account and you are in the club.
      And now two excellent soaps:
      3) Soap Commander, a high quality vegan soap with conventional though attractive scents. “Vision” is a great point of entry, as is “Endurance” or “Passion”. Here’s a link for Vision:
      4) Barrister & Mann Seville. Probably the finest tallow soap formula available, and Seville is both reasonably priced and also a great “gateway scent” to see if you like fancier scent designs. Seville is a very upscale barbershop style scent, so will be comfortable for a newcomer, but yet is very subtle and elegant and does not slam your nose against a brick wall the way that many more ham-fisted barber shop scents do.
      “Lavanille” is another great scent from this company but costs more and is a bit less newcomer friendly in its scent design, so Seville is a safer point of entry. If you want a cheaper way to try B&M their Latha Lavanda or Limon are also nice scents, but Seville uses a better formula worth its higher cost (IMO).
      Hope these suggestions help and enjoy your wet shaving experience!

      1. I have quite an extensive collection of soaps and creams. Nothing in my collection is more moisturizing, or more protective, than The Body Shop Maca Root Shaving Cream.
        Scent-wise it’s, well, meh. But seriously how important is the scent of your shaving lather (as long as it isn’t terrible) if it is your favorite performer? I would NEVER trade scent for performance when it comes to the shave itself.
        The other cream I highly recommend (also no scent bomb) is Biotique Bio Palmyra. Very inexpensive and quite good.
        Finally, though I know it’s popular to trash it on the forums, The Art of Shaving creams are quite moisturizing, IMO. Perhaps not quite what they were at one time, but still very fine, IMO.
        And while I enjoy a moisturizing lather, it really doesn’t make that much difference to me, if the lather is good in other ways. I use a facial moisturizer after every shave. So I count on that, to take care of things for me.
        Just my opinion, of course.

        1. I agree that AOS creams may not be the best value but they perform quite well for me. Their soaps on the other hand are just OK after they switched up the ingredient mix several years ago. Is the Biotique shaving cream brush friendly?

          1. I don’t really think one would have much success with the Biotique without a brush. The stuff just EXPLODES with a brush. In many ways, it is similar to Maca Root. Though the Maca Root would probably work well without a brush, it is much better when you use one.

        2. Agreed, I do like Body Shop Cream – scent is OK, but performance is nice!
          I don’t mean to say my skin gets a little dry and I need to moisturize when I use Creighton’s creams (which includes AoS). Rather, by the end of the shave, my face has become painfully irritated and stretched due to desiccation and even if I hit my poor visage with my finest balm and moisturizer in tandem, I am in for several hours of immense discomfort.
          I think the issue is that the standard preservative mix used in Creighton’s creams (and a few others like NYSC) causes the irritation. All natural creams like Every Man Jack does not cause the problem, and the one Creighton cream I can live with is ToBS Jermyn St, because it uses a natural preservative rather (bisabolol).
          I think a dermatologist could produce a fascinating case study on why my face reacts this way to the Creightons stuff, but my simpler solution is to use soaps rather than creams. Lower water content = no need for complex preservative mixes, which means that generally most soaps do not irritate me due to their bases alone. (Fragrance elements is a different tale, as Bespoke # 1 has proven.)
          Agreed with Mark, AoS soaps are no great deal, but assuming you don’t mind the cost and are not affected by the preservatives as I am, the creams are worth a try.
          I also differ (respectfully!) from the Dean inasmuch as to me, scent is paramount. If the finest performing shave soap in the world were dirt cheap but also unscented, I would never use it!
          Fortunately, no such sacrifice is required. I can use any one of about 6 or 7 artisanal soap brands and get a world class shave in terms of technical performance, so the question for me is which of these smell best.
          If you gave me unmarked and unscented tubs of Soap Commander, Barrister & Mann, Wholly Kaw, Stirling, Cold River Soap Works, Bufflehead, Mickey Lee, and Catie’s French Plus base, I would be hard pressed to tell them apart in terms of technical performance. This is why it’s a great time to be a wet shaver, and an increasingly rough time to be a soapmaker!

          1. Wow, Craig, your face really is sensitive.
            BTW, I don’t believe Creightons produces the AOS stuff, anymore. I could be wrong.

          2. Hi Dean,
            Right you are, AoS has been produced in the US since roughly 2012. The base for the new paraben free AoS looks a lot like the base Creightons uses for their Taylor mix. (The other Brits are still paraben friendly in their requested Creightons recipes.)
            My face is a trooper in other areas – pretty neutral as to blade, exposure, and brush used. The sensitivity was a plus in some ways though as it led me to using soaps relatively early as opposed to creams, and in general, I find the world of shaving soap to be a bit more interesting because there are more small manufacturers, meaning you get a more interesting set of approaches and scents.

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