Art of Shaving: The Ocean Kelp Perfect Shave Collection

April 15, 2012 0 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Shaving the face is perhaps one of the most masculine rituals of our species. For thousands of years it was an arduous and sometimes dangerous chore. Most people alive today aren't even aware that once upon a time barbers were also surgeons. Shaving can be a moment of supremely masculine luxury , something our grandfathers had down to a science. Sometime after the introduction of aerosol cans of shaving cream and plastic razors, the zen, art and culture drained out of The Shave, but so did many of the health benefits. Perhaps that is why it is coming back, in barbershops like Pomade and Tonic. Also perhaps why a company like The Art of Shaving has become the sybaritic god of this rejuvenated male activity. Join us after the Jump for their newest aromatherapeutic offering: An Ocean Kelp line of The Perfect Shave Collection

An old barber once told the writer that men treat shaving and driving the same way, and he could watch a man shave and decide whether or not he would ever get into a car with him behind the driver's wheel.

The older I get the more I agree with him.  We also share an opinion on the number of rooms reserved in hell for people who cannot properly signal turns and lane changes on the highway.

If there is one last forgotten bastion of maleness and masculine dignity, it has to be the ritual of shaving.  Very few women can manage needing a daily shave, and frankly the ones who do, deserve as wide a berth at the trough of dignity as they can handle.

Shaving, by merit of being an activity as peculiar to the male of the species as pattern baldness and taking a whiz outdoors standing up (and if most men are honest, they hardly need to be outdoors----any sink or drainable appliance will do) is one thing that we can demand luxurious privacy to do.

My father and grandfather were the last of the generations that enjoyed a professional hot shave at the hands of an expert.  This was of course in the era before there was an identifiable market for male vanity other than tailoring, stripper clubs and expensive automobiles.

When I was a small boy in the barber shop, listening to the most underhanded and cutting gossip it was ever my misfortune to be exposed to, I certainly didn't look with any envy on the older men covered up with lather while shaky looking senior citizens came at them with straight razors.

Now I realize that this was the very definition of male relaxation.

We in the succeeding generations have been deprived of one of the lasting sensual male pleasures, its always been my opinion.

So the gentle reader can perhaps appreciate my happiness when Art of Shaving products began to appear.

They certainly have created beautifully crafted specimens of the tonsorial genre, most people would admit.

But I hadn't gotten around to their actual line of shaving creams and tonics until recently.

The Art of Shaving Ocean Kelp Collection is a product worth both trying and recommending.  I have been happy to do both.

But for shaving novices a bit of background and definitions:

Shave Cream

Shave cream is generally suitable for all skin conditions. You’ll definitely get the best experience if you use a shaving brush because this has the action of lifting the hairs away from the skin, making it easier to remove them with a razor. But before you even get to applying the shave cream, just make sure that you have a very sharp razor and have soaked your stubble for at least 3 minutes with hot water. Once you get underway with the razor, don’t forget to keep rinsing the blade.

This process really softens up the beard, and the effect of the hot water can increase expansion in the hair shaft up to 30%. If you have time (and we know you won’t!) get a hot damp towel and press in place over your face and chin for a couple of minutes.

Shave Oil

If you want to get super accurate, shave oil is the best choice. Assuming you keep the oil activated with water, you’ll be able to glide your razor and easily see where it’s going. It allows the razor to hydroplane very cleanly along the surface of your skin, giving an ultra close comfortable shave.

Shaving oil also maintains a healthy lipid barrier which prevents moisture loss. Moisture loss is a bad thing. Besides the fact that it leads to cracking, dryness and scales it can also affect the lower layers of the epidermis and compromise the immune system of the skin leaving the body open to infection and scarring. (yes there are tragic accidents associated with shaving)

Shaving oils have been used for hundreds of years, and really, a good shaving oil is an essential part of shaving. Most men men with any experience with a proper shave will use preshaving oils to achieve a perfect shaving experience.

Traditionally, barbers would clean up the excess oil by wiping your face using cotton soaked in mineral water. Rub the shaving oil between the palms of hands and massage it over the whiskers. After giving a gentle massage to the body hair, they become soft and make it easy for one to shave.

Shaving oil consistently produces both a smooth shave and a huge reduction in the number of nicks, cuts and razor burns.

Lemon is as well a natural ingredient frequently used as shaving oils ingredient. Aavocado is used in cosmetics as active agents shaving oil. It protects skin against getting dry and it has emollient effects upon the inelastic and rough skin areas. Avocado oil penetrates your skin better than any plant oil. It is famous for its antibacterial, anti wrinkle and cicatrizing properties. This oil is an excellent basis for treating acne, dermatitis as it accelerated the skin regeneration process.

Avocado shaving oil does not create problems concerning sensibility, photo toxicity, or free radicals groups' creation. Shaving oils are not meant for everyone. Some people shows that the shaving oils are best for the men having heartier skin and lighter beard. Shaving oils have beneficial effects upon the skin, preventing allergies and irritations; they can delay aging process and get the skin lively and fresh. Shaving oils are those that can be used in the place of shaving gels and creams. Shaving oils by themselves are best lubricant and are much better than shaving gels and creams to give a perfect shave

The Art of Shaving added a new collection, using the benefits of ocean kelp with light aromatic essential oils. The Art of Shaving with ocean kelp with light aromatic essential oils is designed to offer men a close and comfortable shave along with a clean, light and fresh aroma. Through the combination, The Art of Shaving has created a Pre-Shave Gel, Shaving Cream, and After-Shave Lotion with formulations that leave the skin invigorated, clean and hydrated post shaving.  Metrojacksonville testers have been using the collection for more than a month and the results are exactly as promised.  The healthy smooth feeling left on the skin by the kit and the extremely pleasant ocean fragrance is pretty much the perfect start to either a day at work or a night at play.

The regimen includes a Pre-Shave Gel and After Shave Lotion designed with a water-based formula, which provides a light and fresh feeling and optimal shaving results.  Ocean Kelp extract, also known as Laminaria, is included at active levels across the regimen and helps to control sebum production on the skin, making this regimen ideal for normal-to-oily skin types.

The collection, which comes with a plastic handled shaving brush (although it is made with the extraordinary beaver hair, is hardy and long-lasting.  For those of you who are used to the aerosol cans of shaving cream, its just amazing how long the AOS cream actually lasts.  There seems to be something in the pre shaving oil that activates the cream so that the slightest amount on the brush foams up nicely on the face.  There is a tactile difference between it and the foam as well.  It doesn't feel like dense bubble bath foam.  Its rich and creamy and sticks close to the skin so that you can see every detail of your whiskers and skin while you are shaving---a pretty essential quality for people who prefer a close shave without a morning blood ritual.

And the kit works with any kind of razor.  From the zillion dollar custom straight razors to a 99cent throw away model, this product is pretty fantastic.  With the regimen, you don't even damage your skin with cheap disposable blades.

 According to the literature, "Light Aromatic Essential Oils have been carefully selected to create a clean, masculine aroma. A 100% pure essential oil blend designed by The Art of Shaving Co-Founder, Myriam Zaoui, has uplifting top notes of citrus fruits blended with notes of bitter Neroli and herbaceous Lavender, under toned with camphoraceous Rosemary and Green Leaf aroma of Petit Grain."  Which is a pretty fussy explanation for how fantastic the scent is.  Very subtle, very clean and expensive smelling.

The other thing that we like about it is that the company was founded by fellow Floridians.

About The Art of Shaving

Founded in 1996, The Art of Shaving is considered the world’s leading premium shaving brand with its aromatherapy-based grooming products, high-end shaving instruments, and a retail chain dedicated to men’s shaving.

The Art of Shaving has trademarked its wet shaving system “The 4 Elements of the Perfect Shave” – Prepare, Lather Up, Shave, and Moisturize – and is recognized as one of the best-selling men’s brands at high-end department stores. The Art of Shaving Shops are found in 49 self-named locations across the US. The Art of Shaving sold online at and at fine retailers online stores such as,,, Neiman Marcus, Barneys New York, Saks Fifth Avenue, Holt Renfrew, and Macy’s.

The Background and History of The Art of Shaving

When they met in Miami, Myriam was just 19 and Eric was 26. Myriam, with a background in the spa industry, had a love for skin care and cosmetics. Eric, with a background in business, had a true entrepreneurial spirit. Seeking new opportunities they moved to New York City in 1995, where Myriam began studying Eastern medicine and Aromatherapy, and Eric joined a small company distributing European grooming products for men.

Like most men, Eric had sensitive skin. One day, in the kitchen of their Manhattan apartment, Myriam decided to formulate a special oil for him to be used before shaving—a combination of botanical ingredients and pure essential oils. The next morning, Eric applied this protective pre-shave oil before shaving. From the first stroke of the razor, he could feel the blade glide smoothly across his face. A new shaving concept was born.

Eager to share their new pre-shave oil treatment—but having no money to invest-they decided to sell their car for $12,000 and use the proceeds to open a store, and during the fall of 1996, the first The Art of Shaving shop opened its doors on a side street in Manhattan. Six months later, an extraordinary thing happened: The New York Times devoted a full-page story to the little shop. The response was amazing—new customers packed the shop and then returned again and again.

Wanting to build on this momentum, they opened a second shop on Madison Avenue and developed a complete line of natural shaving products. Soon the two had become experts, and in 2002, Random House published their hard cover book, The Art of Shaving. They continued to perfect the science as well as the art of shaving, until they achieved their goal. “The 4 Elements of the Perfect Shaveԗa new shaving system—was launched. Just two years after opening their first store, Myriam and Eric found themselves at the forefront of what would become a revolution in men’s grooming.

The Art of Shaving has become the best-selling men’s brand at high-end department stores. Their own stores can be found in 17 locations across the country.

The Art of Shaving was started in a kitchen. Today the company is a worldwide organization still nurtured by the founders' talent and passion. They have succeeded in creating a brand with a mission, one that promises to be a household name for generations to come.

article by Stephen Dare