The Gentlemens Refinery - After Shave Balm

Discussion in 'Front Page Articles' started by joel, Apr 18, 2008.

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    Simply the best.

    The Gentlemens Refinery makes the finest after shave balm in the world, bar-none.

    While many (myself included) were quite disappointed with the discontinuation of D.R. Harris' original formula of Aftershave Milk a year or two ago, I'm pleased to say i've found a replacement.... a much better replacement that is. "The Standard After Shave Balm" formulated by Perry Gastis and his team at The Gentlemens Refinery is truly a "best of breed" product. Not only does it work beautifully by fighting razor burn and irritation, but it smells nice, absorbs very quickly into your skin, leaves your face perfectly moisturized/toned - and the handy dispenser makes this stuff incredibly easy to use.

    This balm is moisturizing enough for those with dry skin in the winter - yet absorbs so effectively and without an oily residue, it can also be used by those with oily skin, or during the summer. This balm is surprisingly well rounded, and should be a good fit for well... just about anyone.

    With the exceptional product, the handy pump top that delivers the perfect, conservative dose time and time again - and the quality ingredients, they've really hit a home run with this product. I'm pretty nit-picky, but frankly, there's just nothing critical I can say about the product and its efficacy. More on that in a bit...

    First - the packaging. Exceptionally classy, and certainly among the fanciest you'll find out there for mens grooming products. This balm comes in a black box, with a red interior sporting a "Barbers Tip" as you open the box. A bit pointless as the barbers tips are a little cheezy, and the box is merely going to be pitched - but hey, nice little touches are always appreciated and it adds to the "experience." Before we pitch the box however, lets take a look see....




    Top opened....

    Barbers tip close up....

    So as previously stated - this after shave balm comes in a nifty, and exceptionally ridged pump topped canister. While it certainly doesn't look like a traditional tube/jar/bottle of after shave, it is incredibly well built and looks/feels very nice in person. Actually... I think this is the first time i've mentioned, or noticed the "quality feeling" of a products packaging. In any event - it's extremely well built, and its quite clear no corners were cut...


    Pump Top....

    Alright - now that we've gotten the packaging out of the way - let's get to the most important part - the juice.

    1.) Consistency - This product is more of a "milk" than a "balm" and has nearly the identical consistency of the previous iteration of D.R. Harris' A/S milk. Very light and spreads quickly, and evenly on ones face, with zero tackiness.

    2.) Scent - a very light rose/sandalwood like scent with some hints of citrus. While it is quite pleasant, it is light, and fades away in a few minutes - which is appreciated.

    3.) Ingredients - as posted above (in the pictures showing the outside of the box) are simply first rate. While most high quality after shaves are expensive, typically you don't get what you pay for. With this product however, this is not the case. Loaded with rich butters, extracts fatty alcohols (the good alcohols) and oils, these ingredients aren't cheap, and surpass anything else i've seen/experienced on the market.

    4.) Efficacy - as stated, it is my opinion this is simply the best stuff out there. Even the mighty good after shave balm from CAR/Enchante is served a heathy plate of comeuppance. This stuff just plumb works... and really well. Fights razor burn/irritations, moisturizes beautifully, absorbs remarkably fast, tones your skin, and smells nice... what more can you ask for?

    Price - Not cheap. $40 for a 100ml tube/canister. Now, before you clutch your chest and scurry for the nitro tabs, keep 4 things in mind.

    #1 - As previously mentioned, this balm comes with a handy pump top. Now, because it delivers the perfect amount of product each time (which is a pretty conservative amount) a bottle of this stuff goes a long way. I've been using this after shave exclusively for several months, and have barely made a dent on the bottle. I'd estimate this bottle to last about a year... maybe even longer.

    One press from the pump top applied to the palm of my hand....

    #2 - The price of this product is right in line with it's peers. In fact, per oz, its much less expensive than CAR/Hydrolast, and right in line with the new DR Harris A/S Milk - yet is markedly superior, and requires less product.

    #3 - It's made with superior (and as a result more costly) ingredients. Keep in mind, it also has better packaging (which affects cost) and is just plumb more efficacious than the competition.

    #4 - Products purchased from The Gentlemens Refinery are shipped for free - so the price of shipping is built into the products. Add shipping into the price of a single balm (an additional $5-6) and all of the sudden that "heart clenching" price becomes pretty darn reasonable.

    This balm gets two big thumbs up from me, and has secured itself as my favorite after shave. In my opinion, it's a must have - and I highly recommend it for gentlemen of all skin types. I'm hooked!
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 8, 2017
  2. Laz


    I hope to order some soon. Thanks for the great review (nice pics too).
  3. I completely agree with Joel's assessment. This balm works wonders and is simply better than anything else on the market. It moisturizes as well as any moisturizing cream.

    Money well spent.
  4. I think I may have to give this one a go... I have never tried any gentlemens refinery products before
  5. I heartily concur. Gentlemen's Refinery is the best. It is absolutely phenomenal how well it works.

  6. is there a european retailer for these products ?
  7. A very convincing review. I will have to order some of this.
  8. jlander

    jlander Moderator Emeritus

    Joel, thanks for a great review!
  9. Are any of their other products as good as this one?
  10. this looks nice, i may get some
  11. taking a look at the ingredients list, i noticed it contains urea...which is used in moisturizers as well as facial cleansers. i was very amused to find a wikipedia entry which says urea is also used as:

    1) a stabilizer in explosives
    2) a component of fertilizer and animal feed
    3) a raw material in making plastic, glue & tooth-whitening products
    4) a browning agent for making pretzels
    5) a flavor enhancer in cigarettes
    6) a cloud-seeding agent
    7) a de-icer for roadways and runways
    8) an additive to stainless steel knives to retain their sharpness
    9 an ingredient in dry chemical fire extinguishers

    is there nothing this organic compound can't do?
  12. I found this retailer based in the UK

    Think I might buy myself one too.
  13. Can someone compare this product to GFT Skin Food, which I find works best for me?
  14. I use the unscented version and I have to say in my opinion it is the best aftershave product on the market.
  15. Ill be getting some samples soon. Theyre very generous and helpful with product samples if you email them.
  16. Great review as always, Joel. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't extremely interested...
  17. Their moisturizer is also 10 out of 10 (however it's 1/2 the size, and $8 more expensive) - but if you need a REALLY intense/serious moisturizer, it's the best stuff out there - and you don't need to use much.

    TGR's shaving cream (I like the black ice most) is also quite nice and is worth a look - but while it's a touch better than English stuff - it's not "knock your pants off" good like their after shave and moisturizer, which cannot be beaten - well, at least by anything i've tried.

    The weird thing is - I have a sample of their balm, and while it's really good - it's in a small splash container - and it's hard to dose the perfect amount - and it really doesn't do the product justice. Since they offer a no b/s money back guarantee - and they provide free shipping - i'd jump in head first and pick up a full sized bottle.
  18. 100% different. Skin food is basically rose-water with a touch of glycerin made into a gel by adding tragacanth gum. It has very little healing/moisturizing properties, and essentially just seals your skin with some soothing ingredients. The cost of the ingredients/materials is incredibly, incredibly cheap. You could make a liter of the stuff mighty, mighty cheap.

    TGR on the other hand is a very complex mixture of butters, essential oils, extracts, etc - and absorbs INTO your skin, versus sealing the outside and sitting on top of your skin.

    Skinfood is nice - but I can make my own for a few dollars... TGR at least in my opinion is significantly superior, does wonders for my skin, and if I were to try and make it on my own would be 1.) A major PITA 2.) About the same $.

    Unfortunately, the only way to find out what will work best for you is to try it. If you're completely satisfied with skinfood and don't wish to try anything else - you've answered your own question :wink: However if you're like myself, and most of the other fellas on here, constantly seeking "something better" i'd suggest giving it a go.

    I've tried hundreds upon hundreds of after shave balms, splashes and milks, and i've created quite a few, and helped others create them - and this stuff, at least in my opinion, embarrasses them all.
  19. Thanks for the great review Joel. TGR was one of my first balm (I picked up the unscented version), and it is still my go-to balm. I am glad to see someone giving it some great justice. It is really a wonderful product and the best balm I have tried.

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