I'm sitting here, enjoying an ice cold Lagunitas, watching my beloved Dodgers on television (albiet Spring Training, but any baseball is better than no baseball), and wondering...where in the hell did February go? It seems like this past month went by in a blink. Before you know it, spring will be here, and I think all of our beards will appreciate a break from the cool, dry days of winter. Now, I already know that you, yes you reading this right now, know better than to skip your daily beard-care routine, but when the weather is more pleasant, a more uninitiated type of bearded dude might think he can start to eschew his daily oils, balms, and butters. After all, his face might not be feeling as dry, and the cold air isnt wreaking havoc on his beard. This would, of course be a mistake, as you never want to skip out on all of that great conditioning and protection...on top of that, you don't want to miss out on the amazing scents that top-quality beard-care has to offer. When you're talking about great scents, you must include Bearded Mane in the conversation. Their Nile Blue oil and their Rustic Mint balm, are both quality scents deserving of a place in any well-rounded beard-care arsenal, so I was definitely excited to give their Saharan Musk oil a try...will it live up to the other efforts I've tried from this new and exciting company? Only one way to find out, let's take it for a whirl...
A sweet straightforward musk that is as much about what it isn't than what it is. Sporting something of a colorful minimalist appeal, reminiscent of a 1960's Frank Stella print, this is a bright, vibrant musk, completely devoid of the cloying heaviness that makes so many people's stomach's turn when they hear the word "musk". A stark cold almost floral sweetness, combines with a raw, animalistic, somewhat alien note that does a brilliant job of accentuating a background woodiness which seems to be imbued with warm notes of cognac and fresh, clean leather. Theres a bit more complexity at play in this scent than in your run-of-the-mill musk, it's full of enticing, seductive notes that border on gourmand with how very fresh and sweet they come across at times. At once instantly recognizable as musk, but distinctly lighter and more alive than what you're used to. Strength is initially medium, but this scent does seem to grow ever more faint as the day wears on. Staying power is decent, with this oil being detectable a solid 4-8 hours after application every time I wear it.
How does it work?
A bit less viscous as the previous Bearded Mane oil I tried, this stuff still does a great job of getting deep down into my beard and right to the skin where it gets right to work, offering exceptional levels of protection as well as moisturization. Conditioning properties are outstanding, leaving my beard feeling healthy, strong and soft, this is thanks in no small part to the fact that hemp seed oil is the primairy ingredient in this product. In-beard feel is lightweight, and absorption is very good, imparting no trace of greasiness. This carrier formulation is definitely different than that of the Nile Blue offering, in that it is missing the inclusion of rosehip oil, as well as avocado oil, I'm not quite sure why Bearded Mane chose to skip those two ingredients in this formulation, but it does seem to change the overall weightiness of this product, and although this is still a very good oil, I can't help but think that it would benefit from the inclusion of those two ingredients. Staying power is very good, as this product has my beard feeling touchably soft all day long on just a single application.
The bottom line
I'm a little perplexed as to why this company has multiple carrier blends for different scents, but I suppose it serves a purpose, if one blend doesn't particularly light your fire, you dont need to go to a different company to try something else. This is definitely a bit more of a middle-of-the-road type of oil compared to their Nile Blue offering, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing, especially if you're looking for something a little bit lighter, that still offers a high level of performance. The scent is definitely a great version of an old classic, light and airy, while never skimping on the masculine allure. If I'm being honest, I wish that I had tried this product first, as it's a good oil all around, but I personally am a bigger fan of the Nile Blue offering. Still this is definitely an oil worth checking out from a company that offers solid quality every time!
Ingredients: Hemp Oil, Jojoboa, Grapeseed Oil, Argan Oil, Vitamin E, Essential Oils
$16 at beardedmane.com