What do you look for in a beard care product? Well, if you're anything like me, quality is obviously paramount, but let's be completely honest with ourselves here, that's only half the battle...I don't care how amazing a product makes my beard feel, if it doesn't smell good, I probably wont be giving it a spot in my regular rotation. To have great performance without a scent to match is like having the steak without the potatoes, the gin without the tonic, the beans without the rice...it just feels like something is missing. After trying their awesome Cedar and Leather beard oil, I already know that Steele Magnolia Beard Company understands a thing or two about combining quality performance with an awesome scent, but was that a one time thing, or a true indication of what this brand is capable of? Their Ladies man oil is another in their line of hand-crafted offerings, and after how impressed I was with the previous offering I tried, from this producer, I wasdefinitely excited to give it a try, so let's take it for a spin and see how it stacks up...
This is one of those scents that leaves me a bit stumped (in the best possible way). I've worn this oil a few times, and each time I do, I swear I pick up something different...Combining the smooth/freshness of a "cologne type" scent, with something that ventures into gourmand territory, and wrapping them up in a dark mysterious air, this scent is at once familiar, and unlike anything I've smelled before. A an earthy wood note that reminds me of freshly sanded teak in all of it's oily, sweet, earthy glory takes center stage, while a soft vanilla bean note (not that typical "cookies cooling on the counter" type of vanilla, but honest-to-goodness, dark, Vanilla Bourbon pods that exude an intoxicating, almost boozy chord) rolls in, like a storm cloud casting a shadow over the "fresh" wood base, before raining down with the invigorating energy of a spring shower. In the background whisps of incense smoke add a hint of brooding dimensionality, while a note that straddles the line between mossy, and floral lends a brilliant fougère quality to the overall fragrance. Perhaps my favorite part of this scent is its ability to reinvent itself over the course of a day, at times reading as extremely woodsy, and other times very vanilla (as in literal vanilla, not as in bland, of course). Strength is a shade below medium-plus, and staying power is phenominal.
How does it work?
So as a testament to how impactful a wonderful scent can be, I swear that you can have two products with an identical carrier blend, and the one that smells better will work better. I know it's most likely 100% psychological, but humor me all the same. While I enjoyed the performance of the Cedar and Leather oil, I just find that this product has a bit of something extra. It seems to condition just a bit better, leaving my beard so wonderfully soft and touchable. I recently trimmed a couple of inches off of the end of my beard (seriously hat's off to you guys that can manage to go for years without a trim, but I find my beard grows at such a weird uneven pace, that if I dont shape it up once every few months I'll look like something out of a neanderthal exhibit at the science museum...but anyway, I'm getting way off topic here, so I trimmed a couple of inches off of my beard and...), I find that this stuff serves to boost that already healthy feel that comes with a fresh trim. This product also serves as a wonderful skin protectant as the tempratures continue to get lower and lower, keeping my face feeling nourished and irritation free all day long, with no need for reapplication. Just as with the previous oil I tried, the only complaint I have with this product is the somewhat mattifying effect I experience when using it, but I find that this can be remedied easily enough depending up on what balm or butter I choose to follow up with.
The bottom line
I was already a fan of Steele Magnolia Beard Company after trying their Cedar and Leather oil, but this particular scent has taken my admiration for their products a step further. There is somehting downright exciting about this product, taking the magnificent level of quality indicitave of a small-batch, indie brand that really gives a shit about what they do, and combining it with a multi-layered scent that acts as an all-day treat to the senses. If you are looking for the best possible indicator of what Steele Magnolia Beard company has to offer in terms of awesomeness, look no further than this product.
Ingredients: Almond Oil, Grapeseed Oil, Coconut Oil, Essetial Oils.
$15 at Steele Magnolia Beard Co
~The oil sampled for this review was provided by Steele Magnolia Beard Company~