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Ariana & Evans Questions

Gents, it seems as if we are treated to some new soaps or at least some new versions of differing lathers every couple of weeks. This is both good and possibly bad. Good the artisan makers are still formulating and keeping up with trends and wants from the users. Bad becuase, I cannot keep up with the influx.

So, I have seen some mention of this brand on the forum and have visited their site. The soap base looks great but I have a few questions about their fragrances and overall vibe. I also get the sense this is not necessarily an effort from a new vendor or maker but that the ownersmaremvefsed in this field. Yes/no?

Vibe. They seem to me to be hitting upon a more hipster millennial vibe with their presentstion and webmsite imagery. Yea/nay?

Scents. To be honest, I nearly passed over when I saw the description of Asian Plum. Several of their fragrances seem to be very gourmand at their base. Your takes? I am usually not fond of food based scents with the exception of the citrus family. Are they balanced well or do you find them fruit forward for lack of better descriptor?

The Spartacus sounded interesting with its black currant note. Mind, this is like Trumper Eucris in that it is black currant leaves, not berries. Much likema bois de violette is the wood of violet and not flowers. A much drier and crisper note.

Khalifa seemed to have a very oriental take on it. I was also very impressed with the presentation effort for Khalifa with the faceted black glass urn, as they call it, the soap jar is packaged in. Nice.

While I do not mind a modern scent from time to time, I rather abhor the burnt sugar/ocean/shampoo scent of many more contemporary fragrances. The last thing I want is a nose full of Cool Water when I open a shave soap jar. I aek because they reference classic fragrances as inspirations for the scents. Spartacus is targeted toward Creed Aventus. Khalifa is akin to a Nasomatto Black Afgano( what a mouthfull). What say ye?
Ive got a tub of their Asian Plum and I like it. To be fair, I like most asian-inspried scents but its a good one, I think. It has a nice scent but its not overpowering and it doesnt just smell like plums. Its got a nice combination of the plum scent with a woodiness and earthiness.
Well here ya go Phog (btw I attended school when John Wooden coached):

It is a bit of hipster vibe but I would not let the branding approach of Ariana & Evans put you off at all. It is just a matter of branding and having some fun while they do it. A&E is the retail arm while The Shaving Shop Club is the part where you join.

I have only used Asian Plum soap and aftershave. The new goats milk tallow formula is really slick and I like the scent a lot. I would highly recommend it if you think you might like the scent. Others have recommended SoCal Hipster and St. Barts. It is a matter of personal taste.
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Thanks Glenn. I don't know about Wooden. I mean, only 11 championships to Phog's 1(plus three Helms trophies). LOL. Jayhawk lore runs pretty deep here.
Thanks Glenn. I don't know about Wooden. I mean, only 11 championships to Phog's 1(plus three Helms trophies). LOL. Jayhawk lore runs pretty deep here.
Ah well, I have the utmost respect for the Jayhawks. A trip to the Phog Allen Fieldhouse for a game is on my bucket list. Rock, chalk, Jayhawks!

Wooden coached 10 NCAA Championships and Harrick had another for 11. I was there for 5 of them and had the pleasure of watching Lew Alcindor/Jabbar and Bill Walton play at Pauley. As a student, I exchanged greetings with Coach just outside of Pauley Pavilion near where a statue has been erected.
Allen Fieldhouse is an experience. If you can, go when there is a Big12 gsme to see how really loud it gets. We usually get one or two games per year with marquee teams like Kentucky or UCLA. I have a photo of the Jayhawk at center court from up in the rafters. I worked maintenance at the university for 31 years. I saw some things in that time.
BTW, there are some varieties of soaps that no longer appear on the A&E website but can be found at West Coast Shaving. I am referring to the well-regarded L'Orange Verte and Grecian Horse which were recommended to me by a source I respect. You can also find scent descriptions there.

The performance of A&E soap is topnotch. You have to decide whether any of the scents are up your alley.
I'm late to this conversation but I discovered A&E a short while back, and immediately snagged two of their recent soaps. I think it's got to be among the top two or three bases I've ever tried. The performance is unimpeachable. A haven't researched the company much, but what I gather is that up until this year, the person who ran the company (the name is based upon his and his daughter's, I believe) relied on all outside vendors for his products, and was more interested in creating an online emporium. The soaps were actually in large part or perhaps entirely fabricated according to his design by Oleo Soapworks of Chicago, which means they're quality soaps. If you go on the A&E website you can pretty much tell from the packaging alone which these are. I gather that this year he decided to invest in his own soap manufactory, and the result is the current line.

As for the fragrances, they do indeed fit strongly in the gourmand area, and they're not very refined. I don't know that this is necessarily a negative criticism. They're sort of naive and uncomplicated, and a bit ostentatious. But that said, I not only fell for two of them, but I tried the Summer Fig aftershave as well. The summer fig scent reminds me of very artificial Japanese air fresheners (I spend a good deal of time in Japan). It is not a fragrance that Japanese people find at all sophisticated or even healthy, but that's not why I like it. Just the sense memory. The other soap I have is their L'Orange Verte, which smells, to me, like a very abstract and exaggerated whiff of Coca-Cola, with a slice of orange. Maybe Coca Cola Sangria.

These descriptions have to be a turn-off for a lot of people, but fortunately here in NYC there's a store where you can check these fragrances out. What can I say? IRL they're bizarrely seductive.

The performance is otherworldly.
Have a tub of Revolution and matching aftershave and it's one of my FAVORITES scent and performance wise. Have a sample of Uno and St. Barts I have yet to try.
I have a shave stick of Platinum (barbershop scent) and a tub of St. Bart's along with the aftershave and edt. Performance is great and I generally like the scents across their line although I'd say that you're not totally off base saying they're a little hipster. I'd call them modern or perfume-y but not in a bad way. Scent is a big factor for me and I get frustrated with lines like Wholly Kaw and especially Tallow and Steel where I think their scents are mostly too clever. I wouldn't say that about A&E, but I would also admit that I'm happy with the two I have and not looking to add any more.

I will add that St. Bart's is hands down the best tribute to Creed Virgin Island Water I've found. I used to own Stirling Island Man (soap and a/s) and tossed them when I found A&E St. Barts. That scent borders on gourmand, so whether you'd like or not I can't say, but they get credit for nailing one of my favorite scents.
Thanks gents. Sounds like great soaps but mayhaps a bit quirky on the scents. The vert sounds interesting. Maybe some day.
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