GROOM Shaving Oil
It feels like I am behind on my testing. Specifically, I have been holding on to the Groom shaving oil since last week. Groom is an interesting Montreal based company that makes a few shaving products as well as a pomade. From what I can see they mostly focus on natural oil based products. Since it’s a Canadian enterprise and they are stating that they make their products using natural ingredients, that is enough for me to want to try some of their stuff out.
This morning was testing time for their shaving oil. This was the second shaving oil I have ever tried. The first was the one by the Real Shaving Company. I don’t want to spend too much time on the “why” you might want to use a shaving oil, it will suffice to say that its main usage is as a pre-shaving step. Basically, to lube your face prior to shaving it.
The Groom shaving oil is different from the one by the Real Shaving Company. It is thicker and it takes a bit more to cover your mug. It also offers an ever so slight tingling sensation. I see this aspect as a good thing, as it reminded me of other pre-shave products such as Proraso which has also has that tingling sensation which wakes up your beard hair a bit.
As mentioned above, I see shaving oils as a pre-shaving step. In that state of mind, I started by applying a bit of oil and then the shaving cream. The oil is thick but I can’t imagine shaving with just that. The shaving cream for this morning’s shave was the on by Bluebeards Revenge. Mixing the products or brands is always a bit of a concern, since they were not necessarily meant to work together. They for sure were not tested together. So in that light, I always think that an adverse effect or reaction is possible. Plainly put, a shaving foam of brand X will certainly have been tested with the after-shave of that same brand. But a manufacturer will most likely never to test their product with another brand. Specially if they make the full suit of products. Granted, the range of ingredients going into shaving products is not outrageous. So in reality the risk of adverse reactions is probably very limited. Nevertheless, as a Reviewer I think it important that you know how the test was conducted.
So, the Groom shaving oil and the Bluebeards Revenge cream together. It wasn’t a perfect combination. The Bluebeard cream is fantastic on its own. When added on top of the oil, the result felt too thick. The blade moved fairly well, but a good amount of the oil and cream was being left behind after a pass. It was also harder to rinse the cream out of the razor. Not impossible, but a tad longer than when no oil is added to the mix.
After the shave I washed my face with a wet face cloth to remove the left over oil and cream. The oil is seriously stickier than cream so more cleaning effort has to made to wash your face. Having to wash more is probably detrimental to the skin as this irritating step was prolonged. Keep in mind you just put a blade to your face – no matter how smooth that went, your skin is somewhat irritated and you want the cleaning step to be as minimal as possible.
Oil and water also don’t mix all that well, so trying to wash away an oil with a wet cloth is not the perfect tool and I felt that I still had some oil on my face. In itself this is not necessarily a bad thing since the oil is of good quality and we could easily argue that it might have nourishing properties for your face. That being said, it still felt like I had oil on my face. My cheeks were also a tad shinier than usual. Not a big fan of that.
I then applied the most neutral aftershave cream I have in my inventory, the one by L’Oréal. It covered and appeased my skin. It can’t be said that my skin was irritated, but it didn’t feel as good as some other shaves I have had.
Overall, I did not get a better or worse shave using this oil. Considering it cost $20, I am doubtful that this will be added to my shave routine. As far as oils go, I will say that it is a just a bit better than the oil by the Original Shaving company. But then again it is also almost 3 times more expensive. Considering the nearly non-existent added value of a shaving oil, it is hard to justify this kind of added cost.
As I have commented in my other shaving post, shaving oils are an interesting addition to the process, but at the same time the improvement they bring to the actual shave is so minimal that it is hard to justify adding this step as well as incurring the extra cost. This being said, I do not have dry skin or have trouble shaving as a general rule. If things were different, my opinion might also be very different.
This oil gets an overall score of 3/5.
In the Ottawa/Gatineau region, the GROOM product line can be found at this store: