Wednesday, April 02, 2008

It's All About You

I have never really been into cosmetics for men. As a matter of fact, I have gone out of my way to make fun of my friends who used skin care products, calling them vain and superficial. I believe a man’s face should look rough and worn down. After all if a woman wanted to be with a person whose skin was like hers she would just be a lesbian. So over the last 15 years of my life, probably the only male cosmetic products I have ever purchased would be Gillette shaving foams and razor blades. I have not experimented with any other brands apart from Gillette unless I was in the bush or in a hotel with no other instrument than the one provided in the complimentary basket. And my experiences with disposable blades have all ended very badly. A few years ago I did start using the Gillette after shave gel for sensitive skin which was really refreshing after a shave but I really did not care for the smell of it. Nonetheless, I figured Gillette was in fact ‘the best a man can get’. Boy was I wrong. While in Ghana a few months ago I was staying over with my buddy Doc. I ran out of shaving foam so I reached for his which was of the L’OREAL brand. The can was nice matt silver with orange features on it. The nozzle was an awkward shape, also in bright orange. I released the foam into my hand and lathered my face. Immediately I could sense this was so much creamier that Gillette and it smelled way better. The shave I experienced that day was heavenly, and to top that off he had an L’OREAL after shave balm that rocked my world. It was so refreshing after the shave to smear that balm on my skin and it stayed with me all damn day. I loved the L’OREAL product so much that before I came back to Indonesia I actually went out searching for a couple of kits for my mates.

So of course at first the guys thought this was a joke. If it was it would have been a pretty expensive one because these kits don’t come cheap. But the truth is that after I sampled some of their products myself I was just blown away. Seriously, I feel like I have been missing out on so much. I got this awesome facial wash that you use right before you take a shave; it prepares your skin for shaving. Not only that but it really makes me feel fresh as well. It totally softens the hair on my face so that when I shave it is so effortless. In the kit you also get this Hydra Energetic Anti-Fatigue Cream. When you come home after work and give your face a good scrub then massage some of this cream in, I tell you I feel like a fucking million dollars. I am defiantly not what I would consider a metro sexual male, but I cannot even express verbally how much pleasure I have found in the L’OREAL skin care products. It is not about preserving my boyish good looks or even keeping myself healthy, it is just so bloody refreshing.

It is funny that for so many years I have been content using Gillette which is probably the most mass produced male cosmetics for men on the planet. It is probably the most popular but definitely not the best. When buying clothes, food, furniture, or cars most people will consider buying the best product they can afford or at least what they purchase against the best available product on the market. But for some reason when it came down to products I used on my face an average of 4 times a week, I just took the first thing that was thrown at me. And I used it for 15 years! I feel like a total idiot now. There are so many products out there that I cast wait to try now. I am still stuck using a Gillette Sensor blade because that is the only thing available to me now, but not for long. I came across this company, Taylors of Old Bond Street recently and their products look off the hook. This nickel plated butterfly razor is something I can’t wait to get my hands on. Taking a shave is something I do so often that it should be a pleasure, not a pain in the ass. It’s not just Taylors who have been making superior facial care products for men but also some old school Russian family run businesses that have tuned shaving to an art form. Badger hair brushes and customized shaving creams are only the tip of the iceberg. From here on in I vow never to use Gillette unless I have no other choice. There is a whole new world open to me now and I can’t wait to try out everything it has to offer. So boys, don’t knock it till you have tried it. You are special, you are worth it, pamper yourself.

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