It's no secret that Baroque Royal is making quite an impact in the luxury grooming segment. With an impressive suite of high end skincare products, in addition to an exceptional beard-care line, this is a label that has, quite rapidly, earned themselves a seat at the table. Over the past couple of weeks, I've sampled their beard soap, and balm (in addition to their ridiculously luxurious eye gel, and downright heavenly face cream), and have nothing but positive things to say about this brand. Of course, the cornerstone of any beard-care line is the oil, it sets the tone and usually acts as the standard-bearer for the company whose name is on the bottle. I honestly don't have a good excuse as to why I didnt try the Baroque Royal beard oil first when they sent me some of their products, but I'm only too happy to try it now. So I'll spare you, dear readers, any further preamble, and get right to it...let's take this stuff for a spin and see what we think.
As you might guess, this smells similar to both the soap and the balm which both sport the Ocean Blue designation on their labels. A "beach" type scent, this product starts out with the same sophisticated, well toned minerality that instantly conjures up mental images of expensive prestige cuvée Champagne, chalky and refined with an underlying duality of dense strength and gossamer weightlessness, setting the perfect stage for a salty/sweet oceanic presence reminiscent of the long fronds of Pacific kelp that line the morning shore of any number of beaches in the Monterey bay. Where the balm and soap had an almost fruity component that this oceanic presence rolled into, the oil presents a distinctly floral accord at its heart...a driving fanfare of lilac and hyacinth that some how manage to maintain a distinctly masculine edge while compromising none of its floral intensity. This is tempered by cool green notes of cucumber and ozone that conjure up mental images of lazy summer afternoons spent lounging poolside at an exclusive resort, drinking gimlets and enjoying the sun, as the gentlest of breezes rustles the palms. While I don't experience the same crisp citrus presence in this product that I did in the balm and soap, there is something providing a focused brightness that adds structure and life, while that same familiar "salt water mixed with clean cotton" chord from the other products in this lineup gracefully dances in the high note. A true tour-de-force among oceanic scents, boldly proclaiming its summer-readiness, even on the eve of the winter solstice. This is the kind of scent that can make you close your eyes, and even if only for a fraction of a moment, transport you from a chilly afternoon in the middle of the desert to a respelndant seaside paradise on the perfect summer day. Quite possibly my favorite permutation of this fragrance so far, and while it pairs brilliantly with the complimenting balm, I find that for a truly tropical sensory feast, the combination of this oil layered under the Akoni beard cream by Huskybeard, is nearly unbeatable. Strength is a sophisticated and restrained hair above medium, and staying power is wonderful, lasting a solid 8 hours or more on a single application.
How does it work?
Knocking Artius Man off of the throne for most viscous oil, this stuff is incredibly thick while still maintaining a lightweight feel. The thing I noticed first, and continue to notice every time I use this product, is the ridiculously high amount of tactile slip, so much in fact, that I had to double check the ingredients list to make sure that there was no silicone in this product...thankfully you won't find any here, just natural, high-quality goodness that feels amazing in-beard. If the incredible absorption and lack of any discernable residue whatsoever didn't already tell the story of how high quality this stuff is, the fact that my comb easily glides through my beard immediately after application certainly does. The wheat germ and hemp oils in this product provide incredible conditioning, leaving my beard feeling incredibly strong while also imparting a softness and body that are second-to-none. The occlusive properties of the olive, sweet almond, and jojoba oils, have both my beard, and the skin underneath it, feeling so wonderfully moisturized that I would venture to guess that you could use this product as a stand-in for your favorite skin serum in the event you find yourself in need of such a thing. The high content of argan oil in this product lends exceptional finishing qualities, imparting a lustrous smimmer that has my beard looking absolutely incredible. Staying power is exceptional, lasting all day long without any need for reapplication on normal-wear days (I will admit that I found myself reaching for a touchup after an afternoon of doing some yardwork on a particularly dry and cold day).
The bottom line
Many times, I find that when a new company comes along, the first permutation of their products remind me of the old saying "putting the same old wine into a new bottle", with nothing really exciting or particularly unique setting them apart. Now this isn't necessarily a bad thing, because it takes time to tweak formulas, and get everything dialed in, so this leaves room for growth...but Baroque Royal is a company that shows not only their pedigree as a label which sprang forth from the minds of professionals, who have globally acclaimed Couture houses on their resumes, but also their seriousness about producing unique products that deliver incredible performance. From strictly a value standpoint, this may be one of the best pound-for-pound deals in the beard-care game today, with a two-ounce bottle costing less than one-ounce bottles of products that, in many cases, don't perform quite as well. There is a reason that Baroque Royal is a rising star in the grooming industry, and if this label continues to maintain such an exacting commitment to producing quality goods as they grow, I have no reason to believe that such celestial ascention will level off any time soon.
Ingredients: Virgin Argan Oil, Golden Jojoba Oil, Wheat Germ Oil, Olive Fruit Oil, Grapeseed Oil, hemp Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Fragrance
$11.95 at baroqueroyal.com
~The oil sampled for this review was provided by Baroque Royal