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Hershey's Cocoa Butter Shaving Soap

Item Description

Wooden bowl with puck of vintage shaving soap.

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Pros: Rich, moisturizing lather, smooth glide, excellent shave
Cons: Somewhat thin lather, weak scent (but expected considering the age)
I went out with my wife and her friend to a few of the local antique malls in the Harrisburg, PA area (near Hershey, PA). Much to my wonderment, one of the first things I saw was a wooden bowl labeled "Hershey's Cocoa Butter Shaving Soap - Fougere." I figured it was an empty bowl but would make an interesting addition to the Shave Den. I was even more shocked when I picked it up and discovered that it still had a barely used puck of soap inside, and it still seems to have a mild scent. A little research shows that this was probably produced sometime between the 1940s and early 1950s. My cost was $12.00...a little steep for used soap, but it's not something you see every day!

Here's a link to an article about the production of soaps by the Hershey Chocolate Company. Apparently, it was conceived as a way of using up surplus cocoa butter. http://www.hersheyarchives.org/essay/printable.aspx?EssayId=37

I used it this morning and I'm pleased to report that it was an excellent shave! I used a moist (but shaken out) brush (Ever-Ready restoration with a TGN Finest Badger knot) and swirled it for about 30 seconds on the puck. It loaded easily and the brush was filled with a thick cream. I applied it to my wet face, brushed it around, for a few seconds, and ended up with a moist, smooth lather...not particularly thick, but very rich and lubricating. I shaved with an old Type "G" Schick injector razor (also an antique shop score) with a fresh REVCO (also vintage) Platinum Chrome blade. The shave was very smooth and easy...the soap provided great lubrication and I ended up with a Damn Fine Shave (DFS). My face was very well-moisturized by the cocoa butter in the soap and now, a few hours later, is still very smooth and soft.

The scent is labeled as "Fougere" (French for "fern"). I didn't pick up on any fern scent, but it had a very mild, soapy fragrance with some light floral and herbal notes. Very pleasant but not particularly strong...as was to be expected, considering the soap is 60+ years old. I did not detect any chocolate or cocoa butter notes, but from my readings, that was intentional...they tried several scents until they found one that masked the chocolate aromas.

Bottom Line: A very good performing soap, particularly considering the age. I probably won't use it again, but it will remain a part of my collection, particularly because of the local and historical connections.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
2.00 star(s)
Lather
3.00 star(s)
Quality
4.00 star(s)
Efficacy
4.00 star(s)
Moisturizing
4.00 star(s)
Borderboss
Borderboss
I just bought a similar container with unused soap off eBay for $10. I'm glad to hear it can still be used. Too bad it doesn't have a chocolate smell. The Hersheys Shave Cream I got from Hersheys Lodge definitely does.

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