Like most men, you have your favorite shaving cream. Your preferred beard oil. Your tried-and-true aftershave. You probably also have your favorite cologne. On a case-by-case basis, this is a good thing. But taken as a whole, the crash of competing aromas can be overwhelming, if not headache-inducing.
Hence The Art of Shaving’s Oud Collection, an assortment of pre-shave oil, shaving cream, aftershave, and cologne that all share TAOS’s best-selling Oud fragrance — a woody, warm, slightly spicy scent that is neither strong nor too subtle. That’s harder to do than you might think; active ingredients and a product’s viscosity can mess with the balance of so-called notes, meaning what smells good in a spray suddenly smells like chemicals in a lotion.
Will you like it? Yes, if you’re drawn to warmer fragrances. TAOS calls it Middle Eastern, with notes of saffron, patchouli, and cedarwood. If that doesn’t mean anything to you, imagine whiskey aged in a Caribbean rum cask. If that’s still not helping, then just trust us: Yes, you will like it.
As for the performance of the product themselves, The Art of Shaving delivers its usual, quality goods. Here’s what to expect:
Oud Pre-Shave Oil ($30): Formulated with olive and castor oils, this shave prep product takes your grizzliest beard hairs and turns them into softies. A little goes a long way: Drop a dime amount in your hands, rub together, then put palms to face and make circles. Bonus? It reduces razor rash.
Oud Shaving Cream ($30): A rich, foamy lather coats your face and protects it from nasty razor nicks by improving the blade’s glide. Made with essential oils, the cream also provides hydration to your skin. The Oud scent is subtle but makes for a pleasant shaving experience, if you’re awake enough to take note.
Oud After-Shave Balm ($50): Help calm your skin and lock in moisture with this post-shave balm. We think it’s the perfect weight — not too heavy or too light. The product is made with shea butter and grape seed extract, and works well as a daily moisturizer.
Oud Suede Cologne ($125): Finish your shave off with a quick spray of this woody, earthy fragrance. A slightly stronger formula than what’s in the creams and oils, the cologne works great as either a daytime or evening option.
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