It was one of those small changes in everyday life that, in retrospect, gave a considerable boost to the way we lead our lives, and whose reversal now seems all the more impossible, since these changes were followed by a whole series of other changes in the way we cope with existence, which, like coupled freight cars, now form a whole of not inconsiderable gravity and interdependence. In short: About two and a half years ago I shaved for the first time.
This means that I have already removed my facial hair regularly in the past. First with an electric razor (from Braun, received for my sixteenth birthday, initiatic experience), then over more than ten years with changing "cartridge" system razors (Gilette Mach 3, 4, 5; Wilkinson Sword 3D, 4D, 5D etc.) - and with that I thought that was it. This is the way to shave. For external reasons, which can be reconstructed later but do not belong here, and a sudden, in its genesis somewhat obscure, space-consuming will to shape, I stood one day with an old-school razor plane, a jar of shaving soap and a shaving brush made of synthetic bristle in front of the bathroom mirror. And it was wonderful! An unprecedentedly thorough and satisfying shave! But it wasn't just the result, it was also the experience that was inspiring: the almost meditative, calmly prepared and followed up sequence of necessary actions only cost time on the clock face, because in reality it formed a period of time, gave it quality and "taste", which had previously only half-heartedly or reluctantly been linked to the regular shower routine: can foam on the face, scraped, scraped, scraped, foam residue quickly showered off. "Convenient, but basically annoying. But in this way, I had actually conquered fifteen minutes for myself (!) all at once on three days of the week, which in a bourgeois society, please consider a medium-sized triumph. Please send flowers and congratulatory notes to my post office box.
From the very beginning, this oasis-like feeling of well-being was due in part to the exquisitely scented shaving soaps from Proraso, an old Italian company for barber products of all kinds, whose product design still evokes eternal 50s Italian summers; you want to cheer. In the following months I lost my 30cm beard (model "Nordmann rustic"), which had not been touched since my school days, because I exchanged it for 5cm of the model "Cardinal Richelieu" at the inner city barbershop. And also with oils and balsam, the active brand from the Florentine Fiesole again stood out: Good care properties with a tasteful olfactory balance and at the same time very humane pricing! I particularly liked "Wood and Spice" right from the start: A quite powerfully tuned, but very balanced triad of mentholy freshness, hearty woodiness and warming sweetness. And even though my image of a barbershop fragrance signature has changed and deepened considerably since I joined the Perfume Order, I still consider "Wood and Spice" a successful update of the old barbershop theme. At least, as long as it's not about the cologne out of line...
I don't know whether Proraso has made a big effort in the composition of the fragrance notes when composing the perfume version of "Wood and Spice", or whether it simply lacks the oily or balsamic "carrier mass" that is responsible for the balanced and high-quality scent impression of the other products in this series, but somehow the above-mentioned balance has been thrown a little out of joint in this cologne: The sweetness takes over shortly after spraying on and robs the very mentholated mint of the bearded oil of its nurturing freshness, which shifts the overall impression more in the direction of Wrigley's Spearmint (the scents speak of "violet leaf" - maybe that's what it is; "violet candy" would be more appropriate). In addition, the wood, which is actually so neatly tied in, suddenly appears comparatively dry, prickly and clearly synthetic. Also the missing scent (with cosmetic products God knows no malus) is suddenly a bit annoying, even if this finding may be objectively unfair.
"Wood and Spice Cologne" is certainly not a mistake in itself, but compared to its colleagues it seems a bit like a piece of buckwheat. Hence my recommendation for the bearded people among you: try instead either the beard oil of the same name or (if you prefer a three-day beard) the "Balsamo cura barba". Both of them convey much more value and radiate almost as long and intense as the cologne - at a smaller course. Have I already advertised enough for Proraso products?