Good morning gents. I would like to take a moment to review some fine shaving soaps from Chelsea's Soap Garden, an eBay seller. I came across her products randomly, and was intrigued by the Ginger-Lime soap, two scents which are at the top of my favorites list. I had her site bookmarked for months before I finally got around to ordering, and now I wish I hadn't waited so long.
I got two shave soaps, one in Ginger-Lime, and another in "Katmandu" (ignore the QED shave stick):
These are glycerin-based soaps with lots of other stuff added. According to her site: "Natural White Glycerin soap, French White Clay, Aloe Vera Gel, Witch Hazel, Vitamin E and an amazing new product called "Foaming Bath Butter". The foaming bath butter produces an incredible lather" And as for the two scents, ginger lime: "A refreshing citrus blend with a subtle hint of fresh ginger on a mild musky background", and Katmandu: "A soft lingering fragrance with an intoxicating opulent base. Top notes of jasmine. Mid notes of spice, camphor and cedar wood. A rich base of patchouli, musk, powder and woody notes."
The soaps are individually shrink-wrapped and labeled. The labels are a bit on the cheesy side, but for $2.99, I can't really complain. BTW, the soaps are about 3 oz.
Feeling the soaps out of the package, they feel very slick indeed. A good sign for shaving. These are meltable - I put each soap in an Anchor Hocking glass container and nuked it for about 10 seconds to fuse it to the bowl so it didn't clink around while lathering. I didn't want to fully melt it since I wasn't sure if this would affect the scent or efficacy.
Now for the scent. If you are used to using QED glycerin soaps, these are a bit different. I am not sure if it is the matrix the scents are in, or perhaps the use of fragrance oils instead of EO's, but these don't have the purity of aroma that Charles' products do. That doesn't mean to say they are inferior, only different. Actually, the ginger-lime soap has a great scent. It really comes alive as you lather it. The Katmandu was a bit disappointing after reading the description. To me, it smells smostly like vanilla. Anyway, on to the shave.
Here is the ginger-lime, ready to go:
And here is my new T&H ebony brush getting nice and wet:
A few swirls on soap:
A few more:
Hitting the bowl:
Now we are getting somewhere:
This stuff produces loads of rich, luxurious, scented lather.
And the "Ferman shot":
Here is my patented drying test. I lather my arm (you don't want to see my ugly mug):
and leave it for 10 minutes and get this:
No problem with the lather drying out.
The shave was great. Very slick stuff indeed. I would put this up there with QED in terms of shave quality, and for $2.99 it is a great deal. The Ginger-Lime scent is a winner. I didn't care as much for the scent of the Katmandu, but it still gave a great shave. She has other scents as well that I haven't tried.
All in all, I can recommend this product. Give it a try! For $2.99 you can't go wrong!