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The Defining Trait of Your "go to" Aftershave

Briefly, I used to get hung up on matching a/s to soap and continually searching for a long lasting scent that I could always reach for. A "signature scent" so to speak.
I started using just a bit of cologne about 6 months ago and the scent of aftershave became an afterthought.
I then sought out just what made my face feel the best. Tried witch hazel based, balms, alcohol based etc. I did find "the one" and settled on it because it had just a bit of sting, a toning effect and a fleeting scent.

What are some of your go to aftershaves?
Do you run cologne after?
What attribute make them your #1?
My go-to aftershave is Old Spice. I don't care much for the sensation of menthol, it works well enough on my face, and the aroma isn't overpowering and fades somewhat rapidly. When I do use cologne, it's Old Spice. I wouldn't have bought it for myself, though. It's in a glass bottle, which tells you how often I use it.

The runner up has become Pinaud Clubman. Unlike Old Spice, it's scent will last through the day.

Before Clubman, it was Aqua Velva. It, too, in in a glass bottle.

For irritation and when I don't want something that could attract insects, I reach for the witch hazel. Sometimes will use witch hazel before Old Spice. Will also reach for the Aqua Velva or Skin Bracer because that's one time I do want menthol. Here Skin Bracer has edged out Aqua Velva. Find Brisk too intense.

Then there's Brut. Wear that only when somewhat nostalgic or as a semi-gag of the "Now we're retro - hand me the bellbottoms and point me to the disco" variety. The family is neutral on it, but the cat hates it. He hates it to the point he has an "Oh no, not again" expression when he sees the bottle.
I'm really curious what your "one" aftershave is.

I have way too many to even narrow it down. But there are a few that I do grab way more often than others.
Skin Bracer
Bootlegger's Bay Rum
Booster Mosswood
Vintage Avon - a few of them.

I feel that most of my aftershaves all "feel" about the same. Some are a bit more watery, some have a bit more alcohol burn, but I don't pick an aftershave based on how it's going to feel. That's kind of a level field in regards to my selection. I pick an aftershave solely on the scent, and what I'm in the mood for that day.

I very rarely use cologne.
I'm really curious what your "one" aftershave is.
I'm sorry! Le Pére Lucien is my go to aftershave now. I just love how it soothes my face.

I too, have a lot more a/s still. Many of them I bought for scent

August, that Bay Rum is cheap!

August West

Moderator Emeritus
Bootlegger's Bay Rum is great stuff and very inexpensive. Always have some on hand.

Thanks to Bootlegger's I discovered Superior 70.

August West

Moderator Emeritus
I'm sorry! Le Pére Lucien is my go to aftershave now. I just love how it soothes my face.

I too, have a lot more a/s still. Many of them I bought for scent

August, that Bay Rum is cheap!
Just alcohol and bay with a terrific fleeting scent.

My defining trait would be simplicity and a good blast of alcohol.
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I hope I didn't leave anyone deserving out of my list:

Derby City Chop Shop
Wm Neumann Heartwood
Black Ship Grooming Ghost Ship
PAA Cavendish

There are many more, but today these are top of mind.


Proraso green is my go to when I'm going to wear a cologne that I can't match up with an aftershave.

I like wearing an aftershave with a cologne if I think they go together. I find that used in moderation that all aftershaves quickly take a backseat to a cologne or EDT, even the aftershaves that are considered powerful.

I never think about pairing soaps with aftershave. Maybe occasionally I'll pair high menthol content with the same.
The first thing I look for in an AS is glycerin, for skin conditioning. Then I make sure it has no menthol or eucalyptus. Then I'll pick a scent. I'd have to put PAA Aqua D as my #1, with CC Sandalwood bumped down to #2. I'd be content to have just those two. And I use a light spray of cologne, as well.


Great question! Unfortunately, the best I can do is come up with my 'go to rotation'
OS classic
Pinaud clubman
Fine American blend
Floid vigoroso
Lucky Tiger
Tough choice, but my go to is probably Williams Expert Aqua Velva
Partly because it only costs about €3,95 for a 200ml glass bottle from Mercadona supermarket and is very readily available so if I include it when I put my weekly online order through on a Wednesday, 9 times out of 10 it gets delivered to my apartment with the rest of my order 2 days later.
They also sell 150ml glass bottles of Floïd Vigaroso for €5,50 but my go to is Aqua Velva because I can use it no matter what mood I'm in and no matter how good or bad my shave is - I have to be in the right mood to use Floïd
Aqua Velva soothes even the worst weepers or irritation and leaves my face feeling great
Aqua Velva is ideal for splashing on liberally and often during a heatwave to freshen up - no matter how liberally I splash it on, it smells great, but never so strongly that I "announce my presence" before I walk into a room.
Williams Expert Aqua Velva is top of my list of go to aftershaves because it ticks every box
Most of us would agree that Original Clubman Aftershave (in my opinion, it has a 'clean' and pleasant citrus-like scent, a touch of woodsy notes with a light powdery finish), is that classic, quintessential 'old school' barber shop fragrance!!! :thumbsup:

On the other hand...in years past, I loved Special Reserve (wore it for years), then fell in love with Citrus Musk 'for a spell', but a few years ago...I got 'turned on' to the 'vintage' splashes like;

a) Club Royale (a citrus, a hint of leather, a dash of spice with surprising light 'powder' note).
b) Naturelle Sec (a 'lemony-baby fresh' scent).
c) Fleur de France (Flower of France w/a distinctive 'roses, roses, roses' basenote).
and I decanted all three in vintage Pinaud glass bottles.

pinaud-clubman.jpg "Shaving with style and tradition since 1810”. Pinaud Slogan
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