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Mmmm...Sumptuous Leather!

My favorite shaving scents are mostly citrus, and at the very top of my soap list is Officina Artigiana's Stay Traditional. Saw it recommended here and it's become my desert island lather, for the performance as well as the intoxicating smell.

When placing the order, I decided to try their only other soap, Oli del Benessere. I think that's the name, as it's what differentiates the label from the other scent, but "wellness oil" also seems to a theme for both soaps as their descriptions both state: "This shaving soap is composed almost entirely of Jojoba, Castor, Argan, Coconut, Almond and Grapeseed oil used in different stages of production."

While not the scent profile I normally seek, I've come to really love this second O. A. offering. What my nose gets is beautiful, soft, luxurious leather. There are other elements I can't quite pin down, and I'd definitely put it in the "masculine" category (whatever that means these days), but without the musky elements that aren't my thing.

Including samples, I've probably got some 50 or so soaps and creams. Among those, the only others that, to my nose, clearly fall in the "masculine but not barbershop" category are Tabac and Pre de Provence 63. Tabac lives up to its billing as a top performer, but the scent isn't among my favorites. It's actually the floral top notes that turn me off. There are plenty of floral scents I like, but here it doesn't quite work for me. I like the PdP more, but I have the cream, not the soap, and the cream makes lousy lather. It's been described as a "no lather" cream by some (though I haven't seen it advertised that way), but even so it doesn't work well for me. I love the PdP Bergamot and Thyme hard soap, though, so the 63 soap is on my acquisition list. But its scent is just good, not great, imho.

And its performance is superb in all categories: ease of lathering, slickness, cushion, etc. For me right up there with the very best hard soaps (MWF, MdC), but super fast and easy since it's a croap.

But the scent of "Oli del Benessere" or "5 oils" or whatever you want to call it is really in another category altogether: One of those smells that brings back memories and emotions. Some in my family were horse lovers, and this soap reminds me of times I was in tack rooms at stables, and one trip in particular to a high-end saddle shop somewhere on a vacation. It one of those smells that has stayed with me, even though I don't encounter it on a regular basis. While I don't own much in the way of high quality leather goods, I can appreciate them, and I do love their smells. FWIW, this soap happens to be vegan.

Here in the U.S. there are just a couple of vendors who carry Officina Artigiana. At this point, as far as I can tell, no one on the North American continent carries the two matching aftershaves, and no one overseas will ship them here because of the alcohol content. But I'm very much hoping to get my hands on them. (Ulterior motive alert: I'm hoping if enough of you buy the soaps, someone will import the AS! So do me a favor: Given them a try!!)
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great review! and I am 100% in concurrence...

"horse leather" is a good descriptor, while nothing musky or patchouli about this one.

interesting note about the splashes: they are *extra* "hazardous" as they contain 15% alcohol.
Something about the essential oils used being so strong, they need more alcohol content than normal to tone it down...
SV , MWF and the two OAM are the
only shaving soaps I’m currently using.
Got really tired of collecting every new
artisan soap.
”Back to the basics” ,I call my case.
One razor -couple of brushes-few selected brands of soaps and blades.

Officina Artigiana Milano soaps are
superb and luxurious italian croaps.

The leather-type scent of
oli del benessere is calming
for the busy autums and
harsh winters .

The sweet -intoxicating,indeed!-
citrusy scent of Stay Traditional
is a nice mood-enhancer for the
spring and summer days.

Perfomance -wise they are
great performers overall,
with a more-than-great post-shave care.
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