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Poster Info

Moderator Emeritus
Posts: 7,726
Registered: August 2005
Location: South Central Oregon

 

Arko shaving soap stick
Reviews Views Date of last review
121 19569 Mon October 20, 2014
Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers $2.76 8.6

 

Description:
Viewing the packaging of Arko Shaving Soap reminds me of something Marty would have found in the first "Back to the Future" movie. Very out of date, yet quaint. But what matters is inside. Peel back the foil wrapper, and you'll find a white "candle" of shaving soap. It's a shaving stick, and one that is easy to use. Twice the price of a puck of Williams Shaving Soap, but 10 times the soap. The scent it nice, but faint. This stuff lathers easily, and provides the basics for a good, quality shave. Definitely worth a try!



Randy
Keywords: Arko shaving soap stick

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MUG000-2.jpg aramisorig08_0001-zoomProd.png

 

Author
rtaylor61

Moderator Emeritus

Registered: August 2005
Location: South Central Oregon
Posts: 7726
Review Date: Sun March 19, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 8
Scent: 6
Lather: 8
Efficacy: 8
Moisturizing: 7

 
Viewing the packaging of Arko Shaving Soap reminds me of something Marty would have found in the first "Back to the Future" movie. Very out of date, yet quaint. But what matters is inside. Peel back the foil wrapper, and you'll find a white "candle" of shaving soap. It's a shaving stick, and one that is easy to use. Twice the price of a puck of Williams Shaving Soap, but 10 times the soap. The scent it nice, but faint. This stuff lathers easily, and provides the basics for a good, quality shave. Definitely worth a try!



Randy

------------------------------
"I won't be wronged. I won't be insulted. I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them." J. B. Books
Shazam!
Another memorable quote!
Hall of Fame
Remember Alex Brown
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HlSheppard

Weeper from the Black Lagoon

Registered: August 2005
Location: Southeastern, MI
Posts: 772
Review Date: Sun March 19, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 9
Scent: 8
Lather: 9
Efficacy: 8
Moisturizing: 8

 
This has surely become on of my favorite soaps. To me, it's second only to my beloved Tabac soap.



While I realize this is heresy - I think it quite handily trumps T&H shave soap as well, especially when you look at the value of the product.



I basically mashed 4 'tubes' of the soap into a square Rubbermaid container (laying on their sides) and use it as a large soap dish. It works like a charm with any brush from a larger Vulfix to a Polo 8. The soap is very moisturizing and cuts nice and close with great lubrication.



I think I paid $1.95 per 'tube' with shipping included (I bought 12 tubes, I think).



The smell is clean and "soapy" and it also works great as a hand/shower soap.

------------------------------
Howard L. Sheppard
howardsheppard(at)sbcglobal.net


"I wish I were less awkward around strangers. I never know what to say when someone asks me who I am and what in the world I'm doing in their house." -- Andy Ihnatko
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Austin

Don't mess with Texas

Registered: August 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 21203
Review Date: Tue March 21, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 5
Scent: 4
Lather: 5
Efficacy: 5
Moisturizing: 5

 
Gents, I can honestly say that I find this soap to be mediocre. I have used it a total of 3 times to make sure it was not my technique. I did not find this soap to be of high quality despite all the rave reviews. I also found this soap to dry rather quickly on my face. Nevertheless, the price is very attractive.
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joel

.

Registered: August 2005
Posts: 10383
Review Date: Fri April 21, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 8
Quality: 1
Scent: 2
Lather: 5
Efficacy: 7
Moisturizing: 3

 
Arko, arko everywhere... everyone seems to love it... well... not I fellas. I've used quite a few shaving soaps in my day, and I can think of a dozen I like a lot more than arko. Although it starts of its life as a stick.... it just sucked as a shave stick for me, so I squashed (NOT MELTED) the arko into a tupperware. It will give a decent shave, but it really doesn't do much in the luxury department, and it sure isn't fun, pleasurable, or interesting to use. See results below....



















After 30 swirls - using a TON of soap (as it is soft) without much lather.....





Sad looking spectacle... the brush is soaking wet, but it looks dried out.





15 swift back and forth brushes down the length of my hand....





BASED ON MY EXPERIENCES I feel Arko is highly over-rated. It is very inexpensive, but it is also soft, and doesn't work very well, so albeit cheap, it takes a lot to get going, and when it does "get going" it doesn't go very far. RIGHT after I "lathered" up the arko, I promptly cleaned out the brush and lathered up some Tabac as a comparison (see below)









After 10 swirls (1/3 of the amount from the above arko) - notice how much deeper the lather penetrates the brush?





15 swift back and forth brushes down the length of my hand rewards you will lather up the yin yang....







In my opinion.... 2 words.... arko sucks. Hey - if you like it do not get your panties up in a bunch, to each their own, but as far as arko is concerned... I won't be buying it again. The Arko shaving cream is much better than the arko soap.

------------------------------
- Joel
joel (at) badgerandblade.com
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With The Grain

Private Plisson

Registered: February 2006
Location: In The Mirror
Posts: 468
Review Date: Fri April 21, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 8
Scent: 3
Lather: 8
Efficacy: 8
Moisturizing: 5

 
I'm pretty surprised anyone couldnt get this stuff to lather up amazingly, it shoudnt matter but id try it again as a stick, this stuff lathers quite easily and cream like for me without much effort

------------------------------
-James-

Jerry: Why are you buttering your face?
Kramer: I'm shaving with it.
Jerry: Oh Moses smell the roses.
Kramer: Jerry, it's vastly superior to any commercial shaving cream. Now feel my face.
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HlSheppard

Weeper from the Black Lagoon

Registered: August 2005
Location: Southeastern, MI
Posts: 772
Review Date: Sat April 22, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 9
Scent: 8
Lather: 9
Efficacy: 8
Moisturizing: 8

 
I put Arko on par with my beloved Tabac in the "ease of lather" department. They both explode into lather quickly and easily.



That said, Tabac's lather is slicker and more moisturizing (but not by much). Using either one gives me a phenomenal shave and both cut closely, yet comfortably. Scent is obviously subjective, but I love the soapy, clean scent (in the shower as well).



I am NOT a fan of the "format" or packaging of the Arko soap. Like many, I squash it into Tupperware and use it that way. To be fair, I don't like using my T&H soap because THAT packaging sucks as well. The soap is great, but more of it ends up flying around the bathroom or in my hand than in the brush or my bowl (neat freaks HATE that!).



Still, I could easily use this soap for damned near everything from shaving to shower/hair. (if I had to, that is... "variety is the spice" and all...)



For less that $2 per tube shipped (in bulk) - I don't think you can do much better.



Joel - I don't see how you can possibly be enamoured with Will G's soap and rate Arko crap. I know, to each his own.. but I just don't get it. Will G.'s soap is very moisturizing, but it doesn't shave nearly as close. In your review, you stated the price/value repeatedly and I agree. That same "weighting" of price/value seemed to disappear with this review.



Also, the pics of the lather on your hand are obviously done differently. The Arko pic was a few longitudinal swipes with your brush across your palm, which is fine. The Tabac was clearly laid on thicker with more "brush action" that a couple of swipes. I don't care how "good" a soap is, you would still see brush marks from the swiping action, not little "peaks." I don't mean to sound like a pr!*k, it just seemed a bit disingenuous to me.



The whole point of those types of pictures in a review are to give an "apples-to-apples" point of reference, no?

------------------------------
Howard L. Sheppard
howardsheppard(at)sbcglobal.net


"I wish I were less awkward around strangers. I never know what to say when someone asks me who I am and what in the world I'm doing in their house." -- Andy Ihnatko
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Kyle

Moderator Emeritus

Registered: January 2006
Location: North of the Red River
Posts: 4551
Review Date: Sat May 6, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 8
Scent: 3
Lather: 8
Efficacy: 7
Moisturizing: 7

 




Price - Arko is priced so disgustingly low that you have to order 10+ products to make the shipping costs worthwhile.



Packaging - Honestly, I kind of like the packaging. It is kind of sheik in it's own retro kind of way.



Lather - This soap lathers easily and quickly. It builds a very thick and lubricating lather.



Moisturizing - I find Arko to be a very good soap in terms of moisturization. It should easily be usable during both the hot/humid summer months and cold/dry winter months.



Scent - Ho-hum. It is plain and utterly unfantastic. Additionally, there is a hint of something (I wish I knew what) in it that makes me feel like I just spent the night in a hotel that charges by the hour.



Quality/Efficacy/Luxury - I get excellent shaves with this soap every time I use it. I would definitely say that it is a quality soap. Arko may very well be the absolute best value soap on the market. It is not, however, luxurious to me. If my only goal/purpose in wet shaving was to get great shaves, then this product would be great. I have, however, begun to develop quite a taste for pampering myself and for that, this soap is not the answer. I do not care for the scent and will not be re-ordering this soap again.



*I realize that some gents quite enjoy the scent/performance of this product. Excellent for them. With this review, I do not wish to incite a battle over opinions, merely to state mine.

------------------------------
-Kyle
...the police often question him, just because they find him interesting...his blood smells like cologne...
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Harkonnendog
This is Manly, But that's not!

Registered: May 2006
Posts: 172
Review Date: Mon May 8, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 10
Scent: 7
Lather: 9
Efficacy: 10
Moisturizing: 6

 
This soap was kind of a revelation for me after Williams.



I use it as a shavestick because I enjoy building the lather on my face- but with a trick. I drop the stick in the same bowl of hot water I soak my brush in. After a couple of minutes it is much softer on my face than when cold, and leaves more soap to be lathered with. I do the same with Floris soap, btw.



After building up a huge amount of lather I drop the brush into my DIY Moss scuttle and it is good for 3 more passes- each of which is thicker than the one before. which works well if you're into slower velocity cutting as your beard reduces. Finally I rub the stick against the difficult areas for the touch and cut.



Folow-up edit: It has been a while since I wrote the above. Since then I've tried Floris, Nancy Boy, different versions of the 3 T's, Proraso, and a few others. I tried Arko again two nights ago and it is better than ALL of them! Better, wetter lather, and more of it. It cuts closer than any of them, and while it protects less than some of the creams the way I shave that isn't such a factor. I even like the scent, though I' wih it came in different flavors.
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SSLStudio
The Lime Traveler

Registered: February 2006
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 1215
Review Date: Wed May 10, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 7
Scent: 1
Lather: 8
Efficacy: 7
Moisturizing: 7

 
All in All I tried it as a shave stick after advice from Scotto and Randy,





It lathers like an idiot immediatly when the Brush hits your face got a pretty good lather, it was slick very slippery and the blade cut like a knive thru hot butter



The Scent is A$$ !!!!!!!! I cant help it but it smells exactly like the cleaning ladies solution they use here at my work. and I just cant pretend anymore it is something different , I used old spice a/s , still on the couch that odor didnt leave me. other then that price is an absolute unbeatable price it performs not bad at all and the local Town IDIOT could lather it up even if he has no clue in hell what to do with the stick.. dont eat it ! .......
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Suzuki

Scooter

Registered: June 2006
Posts: 11538
Review Date: Mon July 10, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 7
Scent: 1
Lather: 7
Efficacy: 7
Moisturizing: 7

 
All I can say is that this stuff works - but smells like industrial strength detergent.



it is undisputedly cheap (and has the cheap packaging to proove it) and it lathers easily and shaves well.



But for me, smell counts and I'm happier spending $7.50 on a stick of great smelling QED soap than saving a few bucks and using something that, to me, stinks. This is the first soap I've had that I will only use very occasionally due to the smell.



If you want a cheap soap that works for the gym or travel bag, and don't care about the smell, by all means pick up a tube of Arko. If the olfactory aspect of shaving is important to you, then you should go elsewhere.

------------------------------
Chris.
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Howard

Wing Man for Stan

Registered: August 2006
Location: Washington State
Posts: 153
Review Date: Wed August 16, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 8
Scent: 4
Lather: 7
Efficacy: 8
Moisturizing: 8

 
It gets the job done. I like some of our local inexpensive soaps like Williams and Surrey better, but I wouldn't complain if I just had Arko to shave with. I don't like the smell, but I don't hate it either.

Great package!

------------------------------
*********************

Howard
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TraderJoe
This guy deserves a custom title by now.

Registered: April 2006
Posts: 2843
Review Date: Mon August 21, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 10
Scent: 10
Lather: 10
Efficacy: 10
Moisturizing: 10

 
The ARKO soap, which I have read so much about (good and bad), finally made its way to my stock. I have come to enjoy soaps more than creams, and this one has quickly made its way to the top of my favorites list.



Price: no comment, its almost free



Quality: one of the best I've used



Scent: similar to williams mug soap, but more potent and longer lasting



Lather: top notch, it lathers very easily, and thick. I either build lather on brush against the stick, or rub the stick on my face then lather. Either way, mounds of long lasting lather ensue



Efficacy: gives a close, smooth shave



Moisturizing: leaves the skin very soft, supple



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Ben

I'm in the Hall of Fame!

Registered: March 2006
Posts: 217
Review Date: Wed November 22, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price: 10
Quality: 9
Scent: 9
Lather: 9
Efficacy: 9
Moisturizing: 9

 
Arko Barber's Shaving Cream stick is the king of the inexpensive soaps. To use this stuff properly, thoroughly wet your face and rub the stick with a bit of pressure on the stubble until you can see a layer forming (you shouldn't use the stick to build lather). Then, take a wet brush and build the lather on your face. There's no need for a mug. Just keep in mind that this stuff requires a bit more water to get going properly. I find the most slippery, effective lather is one that is wet almost to the point of being runny.



The scent is a classic barbershop note. This soap moisturizes well, lathers well, and provides enough lubrication that I can use it with any of my razors. It does require some fine-tuning as far as figuring out how much water to use when lathering. But it's fantastic stuff -- especially given its price -- once you make it work the way you want.
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the-polecat
Wetshaver Wannabe

Registered: April 2007
Posts: 4
Review Date: Wed April 11, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price:
Quality:
Scent:
Lather:
Efficacy:
Moisturizing:

 
A lot of people seem to be bothered by the smell, myself included - I have a simple solution to this. Bring about 1/3 pint of water to the boil in a small saucepan and gradually add 2 grated sticks of arko, stirring all the time. Keep boiling until the scent has been driven off, if it gets too stiff, add a bit more water. What you´re left with is the soap without the scent (I suppose you could scent it with something else, but I don´t bother). Boiling soap does it no harm, and depending how much water you drive off at the end, you can choose between a bar of soap or a creamier consistency, which I prefer in a shaving mug.
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Consettmag

...about those numbers on the blade?

Registered: May 2007
Location: Consett, Co. Durham, N-E England
Posts: 194
Review Date: Fri May 4, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Positive aspects of the product (pros):
Cons:
Price:
Quality:
Scent:
Lather:
Efficacy:
Moisturizing:

 
This to me is one of my favourite soaps! I first read about it here on the forum and couldn't wait when we went to Marmaris, Turkey for a holiday to check out this product. It was everywhere and I wasn't disappointed with the results!!



The fresh smell is the first thing that hits you coupled with the ability to make more than enough soap. The lather, I found to be rich and plentiful. Scrubbed onto the stubble, the brush brought out, for me, the reminding smell of the holiday. Everytime I use it in my rotation I think of Turkey.



The price was so cheap. For around 1 euro, 37p, Under $1, you got 1 stick or candle. One guy only had 4 left so I let the guy keep the change from 5 euros!!. I'm STILL using the first one 6mths on!!



Not available here in England, but easily available online in various places.



Getting a cut-throat shave by a Turkish barber, with this smell, was sheer

luxury!!

------------------------------
Roy
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