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Historical Retrospective: B&B Shaving Soap Perspectives from 15 Years Ago

Ahhh ... brushes direct from Lee Sabini.

2002. Those were the days of Charles Roberts, one of the first importers of Simpsons' brushes into my area. Robert's inventory of Trumpers creams were incredible formulas. It was a new world - Simpson brushes of incredible quality, limes, lavenders, and rose that was actually wonderfully protective.

Charles at QED personally answered the phone, was generous with his time, and knew his products. What a gentleman. I called for shave cream and ended up with clay to clean my face and silver needles tea from Hong Kong.
 
Very enjoyable this reading on soaps that were being asked in this forum 15 years ago at the beginning of this forum's adventure.

It makes one realize how much has changed in those years, and soaps that were not easily found at that time are now readily available even in the U.S.
 
Seems like in the earlier days we were more interested in the shave and not the accumulation of stuff.
Well, we also didn't have the variety of options back then that we have today. I Was only aware of a few online vendors in 2010 when I got started. I still thought Tabac and MWF were 'exotic'. Now we have dozens of artisan soap makers, and myriad online vendors.
 
Seems like in the earlier days we were more interested in the shave and not the accumulation of stuff.
Have a hard time believing people are purposely accumulating stuff. Part of the problem is buying something to try it not knowing if I'll love it enough to continue using it or until it runs out before trying more "stuff". The end result is accumulation of things of which there are pros and cons.
 
Have a hard time believing people are purposely accumulating stuff. Part of the problem is buying something to try it not knowing if I'll love it enough to continue using it or until it runs out before trying more "stuff". The end result is accumulation of things of which there are pros and cons.
I took a look at my original post at the start of this thread and believe there is as much interest today in technique as there was 15+ years ago. Can understand @gsurko 's impression of a greater focus on "stuff" because we have a far wider variety of products available today to talk about thanks to the proliferation of high end/artisan vendors focused on wet shaving. It's not that the number of discussions on technique has gone down, just that those discussions are now supplemented by a larger number of posts on all the shaving products now out there. @geneaut was absolutely right in his post above.

Do sense that, in part due to the pandemic, that shaving product proliferation may have peaked over the past few years. We hear a lot more now about vendors and brands leaving the market or consolidating (e.g. Above the Tie acquired by Blackland, Kent brushes going all synthetic, H.L. Thater going out in 2023, Shavemac Configurator, etc. ). 3D printed Era Razor discontinued by Blackland and contract manufacturer 3DEO, in part, due to manufacturing run cost issues (Source:Blackland Blog, November, 1, 2022). Art of Shaving has closed most of its locations starting in 2020. Lots of shaving soaps that were discontinued, such as Williams and Palmolive shave sticks (link to thread below), continue a trend where "old school" products have been leaving the market or reformulated to exclude preferred ingredients (tallow). Also Supermax, that was considered the number two global blade manufacturer just a few years ago, has recently gone bankrupt (link to our recent thread on this below).

Do others also sense that we hit peak product range just prior to the pandemic and are now in a period of consolidation?


Discontinued Favorites Thread:
Discontinued Favorites - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/discontinued-favorites.624323/

Supermax Bankruptcy Thread:
 
Have a hard time believing people are purposely accumulating stuff. Part of the problem is buying something to try it not knowing if I'll love it enough to continue using it or until it runs out before trying more "stuff". The end result is accumulation of things of which there are pros and cons.
In the case of consumables (blades and shaving soap), the recent wave of discontinuations has led some to build up reserve stocks of our favorite products. The recent wave of bulk tallow Mitchell's Wool Fat purchases, while product was available, is a good example. Have seen similar posts for those who favored Gillette blades from St. Petersburg.

Agree that folks are not building inventory of products they have yet to try.
 
Pens and Floris tallow soaps disappeared around 15 years ago, the AoS tallow soaps were also good. Pens English Fern was revered… I bought a puck of Creed GIT that smelled great but kinda average.

I remember good blades were definitely more expensive and the first stainless razors ikon, feather and pils were the new expensive hotness. Merkur, EJ, Gillettes seemed to be the main game in town. The mergress was almost extravagant.

Brushes were crazy focused on Simpson and Rooney. My first brush was the Crabtree and Evelyn badger brush and the moss scuttle was your choice for a scuttle shipped for $50 CAD lol

Cream favorites seemed to be trumpers coconut and TOBS Avocado!

Back in 2009 I found a seller of 1000 Gillette Bleue Extra blades that were amazing. I sold off a bunch of them 40-50 cents each!

I sort of miss the older favorites before things exploded but the options and value in blades, razors and endless soap/cream product today is astounding.

In 2010 I bought a Duke 3 Best for $110…. Looks like they’re still running around that price 14 years later!
 
I joined just a little over 15 years ago, and based on the advice here, I bought a tube of Proraso, and got a bunch of samples from Mama Bear and Taylor Of Old Bond Street. As has been noted, MWF had a cult-like following, while the "3 T's" had a strong reputation as did Proraso. The true luxury, king of the hill soap (and aftershaves and colognes) back then was Penhaligon's. It wasn't long before they reformulated and removed the tallow, which made their soaps much less desirable, especially with the explosion of artisan brands about that time.
 
Around 2009-2010 my wife bought me an AOS kit with a sandalwood shaving soap puck, after-shave balm, pre-shave oil, a badger shaving brush and stand, and I can’t remember what else (maybe shaving cream).

Back then, there was an AOS brick and mortar store in a local mall.

I still have the badger brush and the after-shave balm. I should probably just throw out the after-shave balm…

This was, I think, before P&G bought AOS.
 

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garyg

B&B membership has its percs
When I first started circa 2008-09 the cigar store had one shelf for Art of Shaving. Bought a brush, a tub of AoS cream, a puck of sandalwood soap, and some awful blades for the Fatboy I'd acquired. AoS showed up at the local mall shortly thereafter. The AoS soap is still a favorite, as is their cream.
 
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