Dove Skincare Interview: Dr. Allan Peterkin (Beardsman and Author of “The Bearded Gentleman: A Style Guide to Shaving Face”)

Dr. Allan Peterkin is a physician, author and professor. He has published 14 books, most recently The Bearded Gentlemen: A Style Guide To Shaving Face, and is currently working with Dove and their new Men+Care Face Range, a full line to help dudes care for their faces.

Recently, I sat very close to Dr. Peterkin as we stroked our beards in a sexually suggestive manner in unison, and asked him the following questions.

BE: “Beardsmith” that you are, what’s the best way to kiss my old lady with passion, yet not drag my stubble or goatee across her skin, to the point where she says it feels “exfoliated” after we’re done?

DR. PETERKIN: Some call that a “snog burn,” snog being the English word for kiss. The best advice I can give you is work on your angle and your approach, and moisturize your face often to keep it as soft as possible!

Your book is called The Bearded Gentleman: A Style Guide to Shaving Face and One Thousand Beards. What is the number one mistake most aspiring “beardsmen” make?

DR. PETERKIN: The number one mistake men make is that they think their grooming work is finished once they’ve grown a beard. Facial hair requires a lot of maintenance; men have to make a commitment to their beards! They need to be trimmed properly and their margins kept clean. Washing and moisturizing also helps to keep the facial hair clean, and to condition it, which is crucial. I like the new Dove Men+Care Face Range, which provides products specifically designed for men and offers a three step solution: cleanse shave, and finish. You can use the Dove Men+Care Face Wash to clean your beard and the Face Lotion to condition or soften it.

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BE: What is the professional opinion regarding the soul patch? I’ve been known to sport one, a blonde one. Should blonde dudes just not wear facial hair? Why do blonde mustaches look so weird, a la Larry Bird in the ’80s?

DR. PETERKIN: I often think of the term “flavor saver” in relation to the soul patch. I think the soul patch is a fun form of expression, probably most appropriate for younger guys. Facial hair has become more mainstream and acceptable, but I’m not so sure we’re there yet with the soul patch.

An issue some guys have with their blonde hair is that it doesn’t tend to grow in fully. Blonde facial hair can have uneven or patchy growth. Being a blonde myself, I suggest choosing a style after seeing what grows in most, and where, but don’t be too concerned about the color of your hair. Just play to your strengths!

BE: How can I pick up chicks using just my “beardsmanship”?

DR. PETERKIN: That is a tough one and it’s a matter of taste. Women seem to be split – some really like facial hair, others do not like it at all. Toss a coin, and if you’re going to have facial hair, wear it proudly.

BE: What is your stance on guys who have so much chest hair that it naturally flows into the beard area? Should there be a distinct line of demarcation?

DR. PETERKIN: I think it would look better to have a distinct line of demarcation, somewhere between the chin and the Adam’s apple. Men should shave the neck and lower edge of the beard, and leave their chest natural.

BE: In your opinion, either living or dead, who had the most badass facial hair in history?

DR. PETERKIN: I think I would have to say either Santa or Satan. Kidding. By category, I’d choose Salvador Dali’s mustache and Elvis’ sideburns. My favorite religious beard is Moses. I’d say one of my all-time favorites is romantic Composer Giuseppi Verdi’s beard.

For more information on the new Dove Men+Care Face Range, click here. For more information on Dr. Peterkin’s book, click here.

  

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Product Review: eShave After Shave Soother

What’s better than e-mail, e-dating or Eazy-E? eShave’s line of skincare/shaving products!

Recently, eShave’s line of After Shave Soothers won Best Post Shave Lotion by Men’s Health magazine in their 2012 Grooming Awards. It marked the third year in a row that eShave was recognized by Men’s Health, previously winning Best Pre Shave Lotion last year.

The After Shave Soother was probably my favorite of the multiple shave products I’ve tried from eShave. It was at least the one that distinguished itself the most from other similar products. So many after shaves on the market are not sufficient with just one application — after you put it on once, some of them even dry your skin out even further and you’re forced to apply some lotion or an additional product. But the eShave version was thick without being gloppy and felt great. I only had to apply one coat and I was good. My skin wasn’t dried out 15 minutes later; it was still firm and moist. It just felt good.

There are four different scents of After Shave Soothers: Lavender, Verbena Lime, Orange Sandalwood and the Fragrance Free version. For this review I tried the Verbena Lime.

After I shaved, I loaded up my face with the After Shave Soother — not that I had to out of necessity, it just felt really good on my skin. The soother is marked as “greaseless” and it is definitely that. Another nice feature is that it doubles as an all-over body moisturizer for areas that can be notorious for dryness (i.e., ears, elbows, nose and forehead). I even put some on my shoulders and arms after getting out of the shower.

But as an after shave soothing cream/gel is where this product excels. It made my skin feel taut without feeling dried out, and extended the fresh shave feeling that you should be getting every time you shave. More than that, it created a layer of protection on my skin prior to venturing out into an outside world renowned for its savagery.

The Verbena Lime is the most popular scent and I could see why. It had a crisp scent that actually dissipated so soon that you wanted to smell it again. To say it isn’t overpowering is an understatement. It’s just enough for a quick, good smelling whiff for when you have to share an elevator ride with that attractive woman from your office.

To order yours today, or to check out the full line of eShave products, click here.

  

Product Review: Schick Xtreme 3 Eco

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The Schick Xtreme 3 Eco is a temporary/disposable razor, but it works with the effectiveness and feel of any full-time blade. Made from recycled plastic hangers and available in a four pack via packaging of 100% post-consumer recycled paper, the Xtreme 3 is light and straightforward.

It’s a disposable razor, but it’s a long way from what you normally expect from a disposable razor. The main thing I expect whenever I hear the term “disposable razor” is a certain level of cheapness, something similar to this – just a stiff piece of lightweight plastic with a shard of metal used to scrape the whiskers off your face when you’re in a hurry visiting the in-laws or on that business trip. Expecting anything but agony from a disposable blade is foolhardy.

The Xtreme 3 Eco’s handle is contoured to fit your hand, so you can actually negotiate the terrain of your face comfortably, rather than a non-contoured handle that makes you adjust your shaving style to it. Another surprising feature was the fact that the triple blade set up flex and pivot based on the amount of pressure you apply to it. Generally speaking, that type of a blade isn’t available in disposable form.

I really couldn’t get over how it didn’t just bend, but the whole surface of the blades adjusted themselves when in use. I sat there like an idiot for several minutes pressing the blades with my finger from different angles; I was mesmerized.

Located just above the triple blade setup is the Comfort Strip. The Comfort Strip delivers the ingredients Vitamin E and Aloe to your skin immediately after being gone over by the triple blades, which seriously reduces irritation.

One small thing I liked in particular was the razor cover. Most disposable blades that I have encountered usually have a cheap plastic slidey thing to cover the blade when not in use. But the Extreme 3 had a cover that could only be removed if you pinched both ends at the same time – it was almost like a clamp, which is great if you’ve got this in the bottom of a loosely fitting gym bag, or if you have a curious four-year-old.

The Schick Xtreme 3 Eco is a great disposable razor. Based on your amount of beardage, and if you’re only using it at irregular intervals, you can get at least 25 quality shaves out of it.

For ordering information, click here.

  

Product Review: Proraso Shave Foam and Pre-Shave Cream

When I was a kid, it was easy to locate a barbershop thanks to the telltale barber’s pole located on the outside of each establishment. And I always wanted to crack that barber pole open and see what it felt like, it’s texture, assuming that its taste was not that far off from a peppermint.

Most barber poles are gone now, but the sentiment, style and quality of a bygone era is thankfully still maintained by the gents at Proraso.

Proraso is an Italian company that has been specializing in men’s shaving for over 80 years. In many ways, it is a remnant of how seriously men used to take the duty of shaving; it was an experience to be enjoyed, not a task to be hurried through.

The first thing I noticed about the pre-shave cream was the texture. It isn’t a cream in the gloppy, lotion sense. When you stick your finger in, it doesn’t necessarily cover your finger, but rather encompasses it – it has a feeling akin to something lighter than air, really. Loaded with eucalyptus and menthol, you can feel the refreshing sensation that is in store for your skin the minute you remove the lid and catch a whiff, before you even apply it.

Once you do apply it, your skin begins to tingle within a few seconds. Honestly, it felt great to just leave the pre-shave cream on and hang out for a few minutes, letting it settle before I added the shaving cream.

Shaving cream gets a bad rap these days, thanks to the cheap stuff in a can that you can get at almost any store. That stuff is so light and airy, in many cases, it feels as though you’ve barely applied any of it to your face prior to dragging a razor across it, which makes for a substandard shave. But the Proraso shave foam had a different volume, felt heavier yet still light, and had its own texture as well. It is a foam, not a cream.

It’s the kind of shave foam that a barber would lather the back of your neck up with after a haircut and annihilate the hair with a straight razor, before that was outlawed.

I could feel the same refreshing, clean, open skin feeling for a full 20 minutes after the shave. It evoked the kind of feeling that makes you want to rub your hand across your freshly shaved skin because it feels so crisp and alive. And it left a clean surface with no stubble or whisker untamed. Also, my skin didn’t feel dried out or scaly after that feeling abated; instead my skin felt protected and solid.

I really like the old school appearance and feel of Proraso. Don’t let the canister fool you – it isn’t the bland, “Brand X” canister you can get at any store for $5 dollars. This is like your grandfathers shaving cream: bold, full-bodied, and undaunted by the fact that it’s a legit, old school shaving cream in a time of gels and other gimmicks.

Buy the Preshave Cream for $13 and a canister of Shave Foam for $12 by clicking here.

  

Product Review: Gillette ProGlide Styler

In the heart of the current political season, and in the interest of full disclosure, I must say that I have always been pro-Gillette throughout my personal shaving career.

It started way back in the mid-nineties, when I fell in love with the Gillette Mach 3 right out of Harvard Law. Three blades at the time was revolutionary (not as progressive, but certainly more moderate than the Schick Hydro 5 Power Select and it’s five blade setup) and I used it faithfully for years.

That being said, I was totally unaware and fully surprised when I recently received the Gillette ProGlide Styler for review. So rest assured, this review comes to you as the result of a fully non-partisan effort.

The 3-in-1 features the ability to shave with the Fusion ProGlide Power Blade, the Power Trimmer to trim your facial hair or beard, and the Precision Edging Blade to make crisp, defined lines to finish your cut or look of choice.

Right out of the box, I immediately liked the weight, feel and contour of the tool to fit in your hand.

The Precision Edging Blade is a great touch and totally removes the need for a separate tool to tighten up you sideburns, mustache, beard or just your look in general.

The Power Trimmer came with three adjustable attachments to trim up a beard or sideburns, but you could just as easily use it for some spot manscaping or even to trim a wild hair on your head.

The coolest feature on the Fusion ProGlide Power Blade is the built in Microcomb at the base of the razor. This helps by guiding your hair to the blade so you can shave, even against the grain, in a more controlled, close manner. The razor didn’t feel as solid as I would’ve liked (it felt somewhat flimsy), but it gave me a very close shave.

While using it, I got the feeling that this is a great 3-in-1 tool for a person who does a lot of traveling. There are very few attachments to carry around and lose while on the road. Also, there is no need for a charger because it is battery powered. Switching attachments was somewhat difficult at certain points.

The ProGlide Styler is waterproof and is also contoured and coated in rubber, which means that it’s not only more difficult to drop should you be shaving with a wet hand, but it could also withstand said drop should it hit the sink.

The built in Organizer Case was also a nice touch to make keeping track of the attachments and interchangeable parts even easier.

Accompanying the ProGlide Styler was the Fusion ProGlide Shave Gel. Interestingly, the shave gel was actually clear and barely foams up in the sense of a more traditional shaving cream. It definitely made it easier to see the area you were shaving, so you can “see where to shave and edge more accurately”, which was true. There was no blind shaving, which was a great touch and definitely lent itself to the quick shave a man may need to undertake when he is on the road shaving in a hotel room for business.

The versatility is what any user of the ProGlide Styer will like the most. It is a quick and easy alternative to using separate tools for each shaving task.

For more information, click here.

  

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