Review: Declaration Grooming w/Chatillon Lux-Gratiot League Square Shaving Soap

author chris mcshaves   10 мес. назад

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Barrister and Mann Vespers in Excelsior

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The Daily Shave Gratiot League Square

Hey guys! Ross here, back for another shave. What a treat this one was! Declaration Grooming’s bison tallow soap formula is one of my personal favorites and provides an exceptional cushiony, yogurt-like, dense lather when dialed in right and rewards you with excellent slickness during the shave. The scent of Gratiot League Square is provided in collaboration with Chatillon Lux and is a light, leather scent that almost transforms into a suede-like smell as it dries down, to my nose. It is in no way a bold scent but is a pleasant one you can enjoy during and after your shave. Scent strength is middle of the road, hanging around a 6 out of 10. The aftershave/toner provides a nice face feel post-shave. The Timeless Bronze continues to surprise me with its efficiency and effortlessness to use. The patina on this razor has begun almost instantaneously and I’m looking forward to seeing the rustic turn in appearance it gains over time. I have really enjoyed this razor and it’s build quality so far. Overall, an outstanding shave and I can’t recommend Declaration Grooming, Chatillon Lux, or Timeless Razors more! Go try them out if you haven’t already! Items used in today's shave Declaration Grooming Gratiot League Square Shaving Soap Chatillon Lux Aftershave, Gratiot League Square Declaration Grooming Batch 4 Knot Brush Timeless DE Razor, Solid Bar, 0.38 Blade Gap, Bronze Make sure to keep up to date with us Facebook: Twitter: Instagram

The Daily Shave - Colonia Balsamica

What’s good y’all, Ruds here. Today I am honored to be a part of West Coast Shaving’s Daily Shave series. In this shave you will see some amazing products. DEclaration Grooming Colonia Balsamica in their bison tallow soap base is an outstanding scent with one of my favorite soap bases around. The new black synthetic brush in the Red Jasper WCS handle is super soft and one of the best feeling synthetics knots on the market. The weapon of choice for whisker destruction is a custom piece, a Martinez Blades 10/8ths hollow ground Bullmastiff shaped razor. Finishing off this excellent shave with Fine Accoutrements Platinum aftershave really capped off the excellence. I hope you enjoy the process and get a feel for what my shaves look like in full. Thanks for watching, see yah! The products used are: Declaration Grooming & Chatillon Lux Shaving Soap, Colonia Balsamica Wcs Ancient Stone Torch Collection Brush, Synthetic (links with Upgraded Knot Coming Soon) Martinez Blades 10/8 Bullmastiff (link ti Martinez's Blades coming soon) Fine Classic After Shave, Platinum Check Out Jason's Channel: Make sure to keep up to date with us Facebook: Twitter: Instagram

Mike’s Natural Soaps “Barber Shop”

Mike’s hails from the well known Ann Arbour, Michigan area and has been a well known artisan in the wetshaving community for years now. His website sells bath soap, shampoo bars, Shaving soap jars, and loose shaving pucks. The site restocks at a fairly slower place. Small batches are made in cycles. When a soap sells out, it may take a little longer for that particular soap to restock. Mike works at his own pace, doesn’t really advertise at all, and seems to like things a bit lower key. That doesn’t mean he is tone deaf: after years of using tin jars and brown paper labels (Which, IMO, were a classic and rustic look), Mike’s soap jars were upgraded to white plastic and silver sticker labels. Many shavers dislike tins due to their tendency to dent very easily and I’ve heard a number of experienced shavers who will finally give this stellar a shot now that the tins are gone. Also, empty tubs with scent labels can be purchased for $2.50 if you want to swap out your tin. The formula is tallow and consists of distilled water, saponified tallow (beef), stearic acid, vegetable glycerin, saponified kokum butter, avocado oil, shea butter, lanolin, fragrance & essential oils, saponified coconut oil, kaolin clay, & vitamin E. The soap retails on his site for $13 at a net weight of 5 oz, a stellar value at $2.60/oz! The scent notes are a manly blend of bergamot, patchouli, basil, and oak moss. The closest other barbershop scent is Soap Commander’s “Honor” and Maggard Razors “London Barbershop”. IMO Soap Commander’s is about a 9 on scent strenth vs Mike’s at what I estimate is about a 7.5 (out of the jar and lathered-the scent stays the same). I’ve had several people disagree with me regarding that, but this is my interpretation because no two noses are the same. I’ve owned both, but I traded Honor because it was too strong for me. IMO, Mike’s iteration has more basil and tones down the bergamot and patchouli to the perfect balance. It is neither musky nor powdery like Stirling and Cooper & French’s takes, but the scent can be enjoyed in addition to them. It has more in common with Seville than those two in that it uses more citrus, but it is also quite unlike it. Nevertheless, I found the Seville aftershave to be a good follow up and compliment for the citrus and oak moss. I’ve seen many reviews say that Mike’s is a softer soap. That has not been my experience. This is perhaps due to me using tins that have seen previous use. The airing process likely hardens the soap to the point where I had to load my brush 2x since I neither used an especially wet brush nor did I use water droplets to loosen the surface. I recommend doing either or both of those things for an easier loading experience. As far as lather building, the soap can take its water but it’s the the thirstiest soap base. Just add drops of water incrementally until you achieve the lather you want. The lather volume is good but doesn’t explode like similarly harder soaps like Stirling. It’s medium in density/volume. Dialing the correct amount water results in a shiny lather that is similar to a yogurt and is VERY slick. It excels in slickness and glide and offers some of the best protection that one can find for the price. Residual slickness is also above average and even more so with just a splash of water. I wouldn’t call the RS elite, but it is more than adequate. If you’re in a hurry, you can buff with confidence. This was a two pass shave with a small amount of buffing and the end result was what I would call an elite post shave feel. My skin was soft and felt nourished for the rest of the day. I did use Alum and Sevilla aftershave and I felt no burn/stinging at all. I nearly always use a balm and did not need to do so for this. It felt like the balm had already been applied, so I didn’t bother. At $2.60 an oz, the value of Mike’s soaps rivals that of Stirling, unanimously considered to be the best bang for your buck. Stirling is mere cents cheaper than Mike’s and while it does feature better packaging, variety, and an easier lather load and density, Mike’s wins the post-shave battle. The latter was my favorite thing about the soap apart from the well crafted scent. Mike has properly utilized his ingredients to produce a criminally underrated product. Now that they come in plastic tubs, there is no reason to not give Mike’s a shot! I can vouch for his Hungarian Lavender, a more naturally herbal and woody take on the lavender genre. He also makes what many to be a contender for best bayrum, and possibly the most popular of his scents-Orange, Black Pepper, and Cedarwood. You can buy Mike’s at or at the Maggard Razors website.

Soap Review- L&L Grooming Trismegistus

In this installment I am able to feature, L&L Grooming's Trismegistus ( This limited edition soap was a group buy created by Scott Stewart and organized by Steve Bowman. It is made in L&L's new bison tallow base and is modeled after Terre d'Hermes. This soap is an excellent performer and the scent is a very popular one. Scent notes include top notes of orange and grapefruit with mid notes of pelargonium and black pepper and base notes of patchouli, cedar, benzoin and vetiver. This is a masculine and bold scent. Get at me here: Instagram: Twitter: FB: Reddit: Reddit: Email: Snapchat: @ruds_shaves

Edit: a note before you read or watch-I tend to not be that big of a horn tooter for Declaration-formerly known as L&L Grooming. I get good shaves from it, but never elite like many others attest to have. I’ve just never had a superb, knock your socks of shave with that base. Good and above average, yes, but nothing that wowed me. This could be that the base is different than many others out there and I’ve never face lathered with it since I’ve only tried samples. I’ve always had to bowl lather. In my experience sometimes a bowl lather is drastically different depending on how much soap and water is used. Also, the soap is Uber soft. It is a similar consistency to Black Ship Grooming, another brand that I think I’ve similarly never truly dialed in. I have recently found a few scents that I really like so maybe I’ll get a tub of my own and be able to give a revisional review in the future.

These are my thoughts on Gratiot League Sqr, a collaborative effort from Declaration Grooming and fragrance aficionado Chatillon Lux who are known for making some of the best aftershaves and fragrances in the world of wetshaving. This is is a complex scent that is in an undeniably good Bison Tallow soap base. Nonetheless, several factors knocked just below the 80s in my 100 pt grading scale. The fairly strong scent out of the jar is wonderful and a rather sweet take on leather with notes of vanilla, amber, tobacco, clove, Sandalwood, Bergamot, rose, vetiver, and Amber. I get mostly vanilla, Sandalwood, Tobacco, and Amber. Lathered, the scent changes to a rose laden leather. Not being a fan of rose, this lessened the scent overall for me and I had to grade it down to about a 6. The Dry down was rather nice though and prevented it from going further. I believe the aftershave will need to be experience for a full effect and mileage will vary person to person. A second area that was graded even lower was value. It’s $21 USD for approx 4 of soap. While Declaration is a tried and true brand with a highly touted (by most) base, I can’t rate the value more than a 5/10. Sure, these are highly resellable, but there are, IMO, equally performing soaps out there that are $4/Oz or less. I know the ingredients used are expensive and that reg customers know what they’re getting when they buy Declaration, but the practical shopper in me coupled with my mixed reaction to the scent can’t give bump this one any further up. I give it an overall 79.5, the highest number in my “Excellent” strata and just short of the 80-84 Outstanding level. Many may disagree and that’s fine. This is a subjective opinion review after all!

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