If you haven't taken advantage of the incredible deal that Last Looks has been offering on all of their Black Lodge scented products, you have a little bit of time left to do so. Everything Last Looks makes is awesome, but their Black Lodge scent might just be their all around best offering, so you definitely dont want to miss out on the opportunity to pick this stuff up at 20% off. There are no codes necessary, just head over to lastlooksgrooming.com and enjoy the savings. This sale is only good until tomorrow, so don't wait too long, get your order in now!
Earlier today, kings of the value segment, BrokeAss Beard Supply posted to their IG that they were working on an all new butter formulation (if the quality of their oils is any indicator, you already know that this stuff is going to be legendary). Even more exciting than the prospect of a top-quality beard butter from BrokeAss, is the fact that they are giving you...yes YOU...a chance to offer some input on this new product, head on over to theirIG page and tell them what you look for in a butter. No info as to a release date or pricing yet, but you know you can't rush perfection, so just keep an eye on BrokeAss's social media feed to stay up to date!
I've said it before, and I'll say it again, it definitley feels like we are currently experiencing a beard-care reniassance. While the basic concept remains the same; oils, butters, and waxes to keep your beard healthy, and your skin feeling good...it seems that the bar has been raised exponentially higher in terms of quality lately. One of the companies that has been pushing that bar ever higher since they first arrived on the scene in 2019, is Miner's Beard. Offering not only top quality products, and a whole catalogue of innovative, downright intoxicating scents, but also managing to keep their prices well within the "budget friendly" category, it's no wonder that they have become such a driving force among indie-brands. Never one to sit still and bask in their own praise too long, they are always working on their next big thing...in fact, I can't think of a single other brand that is as dedicated to regularly rolling out new scents. This particular fragrance might be new by the standards of a lot of great companies out there, but since its launch in November of last year, they've dropped a ton of other great options (Including their Building America series, that has recently debuted to a ton of acclaim among the bearded community), but that doesn't mean that this scent has gotten lost in the shuffle. A constant favorite among in-the-know beardsmen, I have finally gotten around to reviewing it (I've had it in my collection for a while now, and used it sporadically, but it's one of those scents that I find requires a bit more thought to render a fair judgement of)...anyway, without any further preamble, let's give this stuff a try, and see what we're really dealing with here...
One of the more intense scents I've tried in a while, this one is a bit difficult to nail down. If I'm being completely honest, the first time I tried it I throught it might be just a bit "too much", this stuff projects a larger than life presence. With the heft of an old school single-action revolver, this is definitely not a scent for beginners. However, the more I tried it, the more it grew on me, like an epic novel written about the old west, it required time to develop, and with each passing chapter this scent becomes more and more difficult to put down. Brimming with personality and majesty, this scent is as indulgent as it is ever evolving...A pile of tanned sheep hides sit untouched and forgotten in the corner of an old abandoned leather-smith's workshop on the edge of some dusty old ghost town, somewhere on the border of reality and storybook fantasy. Enveloped by a hazy amalgam that, like a mysterious rambler who just blew into town, never lets its true identiy be known; a plethora of sticky, candy like notes, cinnamon, cherry, vanilla, are shrouded in a wonderfuly smokey, almost chemical aura of spent shotgun shells. Vibrating on a slightly lower frequency is a note that I can only describe as damp cigarette tobacco, which sounds unappealing, but works wonderfully in this application, providing just the perfect amount of exoticism, while still helping maintain the overall incredible balance that this scent strikes between retro and cutting edge. Throughout the day, the layers shift once or twice like a perfectly broken in deck of Bicycle playing cards, bridging and shuffling in on themselves, releasing piquant notes of peppery whiskey, lengthened by a very clean almost "soapy" high note. Perhaps more than anything I enjoy the feeling of this scent, with all the allure and intreague of whatever town your favorite Western tale is set in, while also mainting a sense of danger and excitement directly below the surface, just like the characters in the very same tale. Strength is somewhere between medium plus and high, offering a ton of projection, and throwing an incredible silliage that lingers like a ghost, leaving your presence in whatever room you were just in. Staying power is also off the charts, being detectable the following day and pretty much requiring a shower to completely remove (this may be an issue for some, but since I wash my beard every day, I don't find it to be problematic in the least...quite the opposite in fact).
How does it work?
Another workhorse of an oil from Miner's Beard, this stuff is jam packed with the same laundry list of beneficial ingredients that made me fall in love with their The Covenant scent. A thick, viscous product that was designed with serious hydration, and protection in mind. It penetrates down deeply into my beard, leaving my face feeling soothed and noursihed all day long. I've spoken ad-nauseam about how much I enjoy castor in my beard oils, but it's worth mentioning that they must be using an incredibly high quality castor in their carrier blend, as almost instantly upon application, this stuff has my beard feeling so healthy and strong I feel like I could tie it to the bumper of a semi and drag it like one of those dudes in a strong-man competition...obviously I wouldn't...but this is the level of exaggeration that I need to turn to in order to convey how absolutely alive my beard feels with this product in it! Occlusive prioperties are outstanding (once again, thanks to the meadowfoam oil in the carrier blend). While finishing is absolutely brilliant, imparting a star-bright shimmer to my beard that lasts all day. The look, and feel I get from using this product can only be described as healthy, and since that's become what I look for the most in a beard care product, it goes without saying that this stuff gets heavy rotation in my lineup of oils. Staying power is excellent, imparting that great in-beard feel all day long on a single application.
The bottom line
If you've read this far, then it should be crystal clear to you that I really like this product. But perhaps the point of this stuff being awesome was driven home to me when my wife (who likes at least 95% of the scents I wear in my beard, but rarely goes so far as to call any of them her "favorite") asked me what I was wearing the other day, and proceeded to go on about how amazing she found the scent to be. Now I'm not saying that this is the kind of scent that will drive all the ladies wild, just the ones with good taste. Of course, scent only gets you so far when it comes to a top-shelf beard care experience, good thing this was formulated with the same quality list of ingredients we've come to expect from this company. The good folks over at Miner's Beard HQ, out in West Virginia definitely know a thing or two about making an incredible product, but this stuff might just represent some of their best work to date...and since it sports one of the most reasonable price tags I've ever seen on an oil of this quality, there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn't add a little Double Barrel Moonshine to your rotation!
Ingredients: Coconut Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Argan Oil, Castor Oil, Jojoba Oil, Meadowfoam Oil, Fragrance
$12 at minersbeard.com
Artius Man, makers of some of the absolutely thickest oil in the beard care game, are so excited about their fan favorite Winter's Chill scent, that they're giving you 10% off of any full sized Winter's Chill product. As if that's not enough, they'll aslo throw in a 1 oz bottle of Winter's Chill beard shampoo absolutely free. This scent is a mint and eucalyptus blend that's as exhilirating as skiing down fresh powder on the first sunny morning after a snowstorm, and easily one of Artius Man's most popular winter scents. So make sure you head over to artiusman.com, and use code CHILL2020 at checkout to take advantage of this great offer!
The beard-care industry is made up of some big-hearted people...and one of those big hearts will be on full display this friday, when Barbu, makers of the downright classic The Bushman beard butter, drops a quickstrike release of a very special oil. Dubbed The Dundee, this release will be limited to 20 bottles, and 20% of each sale will be donated to the Australian Salvation Army to assist in their efforts to help those impacted by the devastating fires consuming that region. No word yet on pricing or scent information, but keep your eye on Barbu's IG feed, as I'm sure details will emerge before this oil is released on friday at 9:00 AM Eastern.
Ruddy Man is a brand that I only just recently tried for the first time a few months ago...their Moscow Morning and Corner Pocket scents let me know, right off the bat, that this is a company who is darn serious about crafting some outstanding scents. Their Ringside scent is one that had me interested right from the get-go. For my entire life, I've been a big time boxing fan, and even though the sweet science has lost much mainstream appeal over the years, I still find that a good boxing match is tough to top. Hell, I mean, it's literally the only sport where you can watch a replay of a match that already happened, and enjoy it, even knowing the outcome in advance, perhaps even more-so because you can anticipate certain big moments, and dissect them much more than you would be able to watching the fight live. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy MMA too, but there's just something so much more thrilling about Boxing...I was at the SAP Center (known then as the HP Pavilion) in San Jose for UFC 139, and got to witness the Shogun Vs Hendo match with my own eyes (honestly probably the fight that turned me into a full-on UFC fan), and I can say, without a doubt, that I still didn't feel the same levels of excitement as I did watching the first Ward Vs Gatti fight on television (and still do whenever I see a replay). I could go on and on about why boxing is such an under-appreciated sport these days, and how there are still good, and exciting fighters to watch, but let's circle back around to the product, since that's what you're here for, yes? When I saw that Ruddy Man was offering a boxing themed scent, I just knew I had to try it, I'd also been wanting to try their Ruddy Whips for a while, so I suppose it only stands to reason that I pick this very product up. I'd say something really groan inducing about "will this be a knockout?"...but, I can only go to that well so often, and still be able to look myself in the mirror...so let's just give this stuff a try and see what we're dealing with here...
So what is a boxing scent? A pair of old school leather gloves, soaked with sweat and blood? A dirty canvas? Maybe the smell of concessions and adrenalyne when you first walk into whatever venue you're going to see a fight at? Or is it more a snapshot of a bygone era when legends like Joe Louis and Jack Dempsey still walked among the mere mortals, and beat the living tar out of anybody who had the nerve to step into the squared-circle with them? Well, this particular product seems to do a great job of drawing up images of objects, places, and eras all at once. A dark leathery presence emerges center stage, not sweet enough to be suede, not quite elegant enough to be top-grain shoe leather, it could just be the power of suggestion, but it reminds me of a big, twelve ounce boxing glove, unsullied by the funk of sweaty bodies and bloody faces, its slick black surface still prestine and unmarked. This is given incredible life by fresh, green vetiver that eschews its typical "cologne-like" nature and blooms into a magnificently grassy, almost primal presence that wraps itself around the leather glove to create such a brilliantly vivid snapshot of sunlight filtered through the dirty windows of a dusty old boxing gym frozen in time. Brilliant slashes of freshly split cedar logs, camphoraceous and fresh, still sticky with sap further intensify the masculine, "old-shool" feel of this scent, adding depth and character. While woody tobacco, almost gourmand, with whispers of spicy cinnamon and cocoa, reads like ceremonial incense burning at some glorious altar as a tribute to the once mighty ghost of pugilism's heyday. A scent that doesn't quite fit into any one box; I wouldn't call it leathery, I wouldn't call it woody, and yet, reads as something so familiar and comfortable, so elegant, and packed with so much nostalgia, that it borders on spiritual. Business as usual for Ruddy Man, another multi-dimentional masterpiece that might just be my favorite effort to date from this company. Strength is medium plus, and staying power is phenominal, still noticable for a solid 8-10 hours after application.
How Does it Work?
So in case you haven't figured it out yet, Ruddy Whips are whipped butters...and holy smokes, this is some incredible whipped butter. Light as a feather, it can be a bit decieving at first (a tiny bit goes a long way). Now if your beard is anything like mine, it tends to just drink up product, where most guys get away with using three or four drops or oil, I usually need to use at least a whole dropper full, where most guys can get away with using a pea sized amount of butter, I usually find myself needing about 3 or 4 times that much...such is not the case with this product. The first time I used it, I took a generous scoop about the size of my fingertip out (about as much as I normally use), and found it to be entirely too much of this product, it weighed my beard down, wouldnt fully absorb, just felt heavy and sort of greasy, all-around...subsequent times using this stuff, I've used less and less, until today, I used a tiny little dot, about the size of a popcorn kernel (weird size comparison, I know, but that was the first thing that popped in my head, so we'll just roll with it). This stuff melts down to a rich, almost velvety consistency that does an incredible job of just getting down to business, finding its way deep down into my beard and all the way to my face, delivering tremendous hydration and protection, thanks to the high shea content of this product. Conditioning is also very good, leaving my beard feeling soft and strong...but the occlusive properties of this stuff are where it really shines, sealing in whatever oil I pair it with (It's especially effective at locking in that "shower-fresh" feeling on days I towel dry my beard and skip the blowdryer). Finishing properties are so good that I was shocked to read the ingredients list and not find any argan in this formulation, because it definitely imparts an argan-like shine. Staying power is good, not necessarily the most heavy duty butter, and it certainly doesn't offer much hold, but it does seem to hang around most of the day, delivering that great in-beard feel for hours.
The Bottom Line
While its popularity may have waned in recent years, boxing isn't going anywhere, there is still a fan base who as just as passionate as they've always been, and if you stand to be counted among them, then this is a product that you need to incorporate into your repertoire. But, perhaps boxing isn't your thing...well, as long as beard products that smell incredible and offer elite levels of performance are your thing, then you still need to pick this stuff up. Ruddy Man is one of those brands that just seems to "get it", with a catalogue full of quality products offered in distinct, multi-layered scents, every single offering I try only serves to turn me into a bigger fan of everything they do...and after trying this amazing butter, you'll be a huge fan too!
Ingredients: Shea Butter, Coconut Oil, Jojoba Oil, Vitamin E Oil, Essential Oils and Fragrant Oils
$25 at ruddymangrooming.com
New content will return tomorrow...but, let's use today as a day of rememberance for a true American Hero. I ask you all, before MLK Day ends to make sure you've done something for your community today, it can be something as small or as large as you want, just make sure that when you go to bed tonight, you've made at least one gesture to make the world around you a little bit better for everybody.
I'll leave you all with one of my favorite quotes by Dr. King...
"The ultimate measure of a man
is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience,
but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
Now let's all take this day to go out there and be men who live up to our potential...
Every great theater knows that the concession area is where their bread (or in this case, popcorn) is buttered (no, seriously, my wife and I saw the new Star Wars movie last week, it was like $50 for two cocktails, two sodas, and a medium popcorn...we brought our own candy, otherwise it probably would have been $60...the margins on the concession stand must be huge...but anyway, I'm getting off topic here). Last Looks may not be a theater, but they definitely have a high quality line of concession-inspired scents...and they're giving you the chance to grab some of the popcorn scented oil from their concession series, absolutely free! For the rest of National Popcorn Day (which is today, in case you were wondering), every order you place at lastlooksgrooming.com will include a free bottle...no codes are necessary, just add the popcorn oil to your order, and the price will be deducted at checkout. This deal is only good for today, so make sure you head over and claim your free oil now!
To celebrate V&T's 2000th Instagram follower, I'm giving away one of our all new logo tees absolutely free! I'll also throw in a collection of beard-care samples that you're sure to love! To enter, simply head over to the V&T IG page, look for the post with the picture that you see above, and follow the instructions. Winner will be announced on Friday, January 24...so make sure to get your entry in today!
I'm not quite sure how Miner's Beard does it...offering an absolutely first rate product at rock bottom prices...it's easy to see why they've rapidly become a favorite brand of so many bearded men out there. It seems like anybody who tries their products, loves them...but just in case you haven't sampled their amazing stuff yet, they are going to give you a chance to see what you've been missing, and save some dough while doing so. Simply head over to minersbeard.com, enter code PROMO15 at checkout, and enjoy 15% of of their already incredible prices! With the wide variety of scents in their catalogue (and more being added all the time), you are sure to find your next favorite product over at their site...so what are you waiting for? head on over right now and take advantage of this amazing deal!