Over the past few months, I've grown quite fond of the offerings from Sircar Grooming Company. This brand's commitment to quality is beyond evident, and literally every time I try a new product with the Sircar name on the label, I become an even bigger fan. Without a doubt already a shining star on the indie beard-care scene, I feel that this company is one of the best kept secrets in the beard-care game and is poised to become the next very big thing among those looking to take their beard-care routine to the next level. So needless to say, when I recieved this Havana beard oil in the mail a couple of weeks ago, I was beyond excited to give it a try. I ama self-confessed nerd for all things Cuba-inspired...I have Cuban roots, my wife is Cuban, every room in our house has some sort of tribute to our Cuban heritage, so this oil seems like something right up my highway. Will this be yet another resounding success from a company that I've come to expect nothing but the best from? Only one way to find out...let's give it a try!
You might be forgiven if you look at the name and think "oh no, not another tobacco scent"...but this is anything but your typical kinda spicy, kinda sweet, cigar-ish scent for guys who wouldn't know the difference between a Cohiba and a Black 'n Mild. It's also something of a departure from your typical dead-on representation of high end smokes aging in the humidor. Instead, this is a different beast all together...
So when I first recieved this oil, I decided to crack it open and take a whiff (like I always do when I get a new product in the mail), and I just wasn't sure what to make of it. It was obviously of the same extremely high quality as every other Sircar scent I've tried, but there was just something different about it. Not so much a single note revealing its many facets like the previous Sircar offerings that I had tried, but rather a mysterious story that required a bit of patience. I decided to put it down and revisit it the next day. Several wearings later, and I've come to the conclusion that this is one of those "something different everytime you wear it" type of scents, not taking one form, but rather, bouncing around between a Taino cheif, a Spanish preist, a suave French corsair, a swaggering buccaneer, and an old cigar chomping abuelo, a living, breathing relic from La Habana Vieja, his leathery old face having witnessed the best of times and the worst of times in Cuba's capital city....this scent is as diverse and full of spirit as the deep rooted history of the city it was named after. A heady, expensive smelling tobacco so rich and refined that your mouth begins to water with its robust earthy, boozy redolence...it rests on a stoney weather-beaten brick exhuding a well worn minerality, in the summer sun, while a smoky presence rolls in to take center-stage...not your average tobacco smoke, more a heavy, inky smoke brimming with exotic appeal; charred wood wrapped in a rich, warm ambery, incense-like verve. Just as you sink deep into the plush, velvety embrace of this heavy smoke colliding with quality tobacco accord, the entire scent takes a sharp turn down a bright, almost floral path that bristles with character and lends a wonderful effervesent high note of something ripe, fresh, and entirely implacable...a beautiful mystery that begs to be enjoyed without critical analysis, as giving a reason for its presence would take away from the essential ambiguity that makes it so brilliantly effective. Truly one of the most absolutely complete and downright masterfully executed scents that I've smelled in a great while, this is unlike any other tobacco fragrance on the market today. Strength is just a notch below medium-plus, and staying power is phenominal, as it seems to ride that strength level all day long, projecting wonderfully and throwing a sillage that any beard would be proud to have as its calling card.
How does it work?
As with all Sircar oils, performance is top notch. If you remember the glowing review I wrote for their Oud beard oil (which is seriously one of the absolute oud scented beard-care products that money can buy), you'll recall how absolutely blown away I was by how strong and healthy it left my beard feeling...and this offering is no different. The past couple of times I've treated my beard to a deep conditioning, I've followed up with this product, and the results have been flat-out luxurious...but even on days when I don't condition, this stuff imparts a noticable softness that is second to none. In beard feel is incredibly light, and absorption is tremendous, leaving behind no trace of greasiness. I'm still not quite sure how Sircar manages to do it, but having tried multiple oils from this company, I am always blown away by how "transformative" they are...and this product is no exception, as just a little bit of this stuff can maximize the overall look and feel of my beard like few oils can, turning "challenging" beard days into good ones...and good beard days into legendary ones! Staying power is, as always, fantastic, providing that wonderful in-beard feel all day long!
The bottom line
I seem to be comming down with a bit of a cold or something ('tis the season), and for a scent to not only make its way through my somewhat congested sinuses, but to elevate my mood to the point that I can fight back the mental fog and cut through the physical fatigue that comes with being sick, to feel nothing but pure excitement instead, makes it a very special scent indeed. Even if tobacco scents arent really your thing, trust me, there is something incredibly special about this one. If you are a fan of quality, then you need some products by Sircar Grooming Co in your life, and if you're looking for something truly unique, then there is no better oil to pick up than this one right here.
Ingredients: Grape Seed Oil, Almond Oil, Castor Oil, Jojoba Oil, Fragrance
$20 at sircargrooming.com
~The oil sampled for this review was provided by Sircar Grooming Co