Hey gents, back with another shave review. However, this one is a bit different from any other shave review I’ve done or seen before. I am doing a complete shaving process products review. From the pre-shave oil, to the shave cream, to the aftershave. I’ve wanted to do this for a while now so I bought the Soapbox Gypsy shave box that has all three of their Hold Fast shave products in it. I thought what better way to go about doing a review like this than picking up a shave kit or all three products from the same company. Let’s get started, shall we?
The box itself is a light wood, maybe pine, with just a black logo on its lid and brass hardware. The box itself has kind of an aged look, I’m pretty sure that’s one on purpose. When you open it you see the products inside, and another logo inside the lid. The inside of the box looks a little more aged than the outside does. The shave cream is sitting out for you to see, but the bottles are in their own little canvas bags, keeping the suspense going! I love the look and design of this box, great great stuff! Now for the products and shave process.
First the pre-shave oil. It’s in a little 2oz clear glass bottle with metal screw on lid, a label on the front, a label on the back, and a tag hanging from it. There is a clear plastic shrink wrap seal around the lid, nice touch. The front label is a white background with black lettering. In the very center of it is an anchor with “Hold Fast” above and below it. Then there’s a red outline of a banner with “Pre-Shave Oil” inside of it. At the very bottom it says “Live, Move,……..BE” and has the volume info. I love this label!! The back label is also a white background with black writing. It has the ingredients, directions, and a warning on it, as well as the company info. Pretty straight forward.
When you unscrew the lid you get to smell this oil. And boy does it have a nice scent to it!! It’s a really well balanced smell too. Top notes of tea tree, followed by eucalyptus and cedar. Very very good scent, probably the best smelling pre-shave oil I have. It’s a yellow colored oil with a slight green tint to it. I really like the little bottle and the color of the oil, it’s a bit different from most oils out there.
It feels like most other oils when you pour it in your hands. Not a very thick oil, but not a really thin/watery oil either. I really like the silky texture this stuff has to it. It has a really smooth feel to it when you apply it to your face. I’m starting to like this shave oil a lot! You can see how shiny it is on my face. It doesn’t just soak into your skin like some shave oils do. There is still a nice layer that stays on the surface. That will help when it comes time to put blade to skin.
Now for the shaving cream. It comes in a 4oz plastics tub with the same type of metal screw on lid. It has a wraparound label and lid label. One thing I really like about this tub is that it has a seal on it! You don’t see that on products. It’s little things like that that really make companies stand out. The lid has the same anchor on it placed right in the center. The wraparound label is white with black and red on it. It has the anchor in the center with “Hold Fast” above and below it. Under that in the red outlined banner again it says “Shaving Cream.” Just to the right of that is the company’s logo and website. Then there is a blurb about the cream, usage instructions, warning, and the company location is on the back. Just to the right of that is the ingredients list. This one has quite a few ingredients in it, more so than most handmade creams out there.
The cream itself looks like a firm cream. It has the color of blended up oatmeal. It looks really cool, and unique from all of the other creams I’ve tried so far. It looks to have a much thicker consistency to it than most other creams. The scent on this one is pretty complex, it has a lot of essential oils in it. The top notes you get are mint, cream and eucalyptus. There are some subtle notes of cedar, and rosemary in there as well. I really like the smell of this stuff, mainly because of how complex and layered it is. You get a different note each time you smell it, and the more you smell it.
It’s very cold when you apply it to your face, brush or hands. It’s not a bowl and water lathering cream. However, it does make a great lather when you apply it! By far my favorite lather from a cream like this. The cream also gives your fave a nice cooling effect as well. Once you get it lathered up the smell gets even better. I got kind of a citrusy note from it once I got it lathered up. And the rosemary came through very nicely as well. Rosemary is one of my favorite smells in the whole world. I acquired a love for it when I was a chef, definitely an underrated scent for sure.
After shaving I could really tell a difference. These products are some of the best I’ve used. My face felt so soft and smooth after my shave. I also used an Astra blade for the first time as well. But I knew it wasn’t just the blade. The oil and cream really did wonders for my shave and my skin. The oil really helped prep my skin and whiskers for the blade. And the cream did a great job of softening the hairs up and closing the follicles. Both combined really made for a great shave, along with a brand new blade. Look for that review soon!
Finally for the aftershave! This one comes in a huge clear glass bottle with a cork in it. Just like the oil, it has the shrink wrap on it as well. I absolutely love this bottle, it’s really cool looking!! Very old timey look to it, and kind of a nautical feel as well. It has a front and back label on it just like the oil. The front label has the same “Hold Fast” and anchor right in the center. In the red outlined banner is “Bay Rum Aftershave.” Then the company logo is below that. The back label is pretty simple like the oil label was. It starts with a blurb up top, followed by the ingredient list, then the warning and company info is at the bottom of the label. Just like the other labels I love this one as well. Very very cool looking set!
When I popped the cork out and took a whiff of the bay rum itself I was very please with it’s scent. Obviously the front of the scent is bay, but not how you normally smell it these days. This one is made with actual rum so you smell actual bay rum. Then you get a nice hint of cinnamon and rosemary. I love that they used rosemary so much in these products! Then when you smell it a second time hints if lime and ginger start to show up. This stuff is one of the best smelling bay rums out there. It’s right up next to V-Day on my favorites list.
You can see in the bottle that it’s really nice auburn/burnt red/brown color. You can see the little bit of oil floating on top of it in my hand. Warning though, this stuff runs everywhere, more so than other aftershaves so cup your hand good. This stuff is really smooth and the burn is minimal when you apply it to your face. And boy does the cinnamon really shine through once it gets aerated. I really liked how it did that, gives it a uniqueness. I also like how this stuff takes a little bit longer to dry than your average aftershave. It kind of gives your face a cooling effect since it takes longer, which is really cool.
Not that my face needed it, but this stuff made my face even more smooth. But it wasn’t a real moist smooth like my face was right after my shave. It had more of a dry and soft smooth feel to it. My face wasn’t dried out at all, it just didn’t have the super moist feel to it. Kind of how your neck feels after the barber shaves then talcs you, not dried out but a dry smooth feel. I liked how my face felt after it dried a lot. The scent of it lasted a nice amount of time too. Not too long, yet it didn’t dissipate right away either. I’d say I could still smell it about 30 minutes after it had dried. Perfect amount of time for it to last in my opinion.
You guys have to check out this shave kit! By far some of the best shave products I’ve used so far! Worth every penny I paid for them. I literally cannot say anything remotely negative about them. I didn’t see one flaw to these products whatsoever. And they last a long time!! I’ve been using them for almost a month now, shaving every 2-3 days, I still have over 3/4 of each product left. Great bang for you buck with this shave kit! To pick one up head to their website
Or you can visit their etsy site as well
They also make a beard oil, pomade(I’ll be reviewing it after the holidays), another aftershave, and a mouth wash. So make sure you take a look at all the stuff they offer. Great company, great products!!
Hold fast guys,