I’ve always wanted to start shaving like my grandfather used to back in the 1940’s or better yet, like Bond did in Skyfall when Moneypenny helped him with his straight/cut-throat DOVO Solingen razor. It’s been a lost art for many years. Part of a era when things took time and skill to perform. With a growing range of men’s magazines and websites like Dudepins and Gentlemint (Pinterest for men), there has been renewed interest in the wet shave. In this piece, I review one such company helping men get what they need to shave like Bond, called Wet Shave Club.
Before I venture forward, let me say a few things about subscription “sample” or “mystery” boxes. Up until recently, I’ve thought of them as nothing more than paying to be surprised with a package delivered to your door each month, in your own name. Some of that may have been due to the fact that majority of the subscription options, are geared towards women. Boxes filled with travel sized perfumes, lotions and such just couldn’t force me to think of it, as money well spent.
When my youngest son asked me to sign him up for a “comic/nerd” focused subscription for his birthday, I was pleasantly surprised when the first box arrived. One of the biggest things I’ve learned, is the joy of forcing yourself to try new products and experiences, that you would otherwise have talked yourself out of at a retail store. Helps you go outside the box, so to speak.
The Wet Shave Club is a subscription service supplying “a monthly box filled with different soaps, blades, aftershaves, and more from around the world”. They claim to have customer base of 20,000 strong and will deliver anywhere in the world. The items in each box are curated by an “approved team of gentlemen” that the Wet Shave Club calls ‘The Product Vanguard’. Outside of the subscription, they also offer many more shaving products in an online shop.
My Box Arrives
I was pretty stoked when my box of shaving goodies arrived and anxious to see what lay beneath its cardboard lid; which was clearly stamped with, Wet Shave Club “Fine Men’s Shaving”. Now my mailman knows a real gentleman lives at this address.
Opening the box you find two cards; one identifying you as a member and the second listing “10 Easy Steps to an Awesome Wet Shave”. This is perfect for someone like me who has never shaved this way before and has had visions of slitting his throat open. Yes, I did read them and found it helpful.
In total my package came with five items: A Wet Shave Club double edge razor and leather cover, boar bristle brush, box of 10 Trig brand stainless blades, plastic dish of Ellington’s 33 shaving soap and Local Gent eucalyptus mint aftershave lotion. This box alone in my opinion is well worth the money. If all you did was sign up for a one month and cancel, you’d be getting quality products to start your journey into the world of wet shaving. But I’m not recommending that.
With the help of the instructional card, I used all of the products on my first shave without a hitch; or slit jugular. It was a great experience and all of the items felt and smelled great. The razor that comes with your introductory box, feels heavy in your hand and is simple to load. Unlike the more costly kind that twist open, the Wet Shave Club model is a three part piece. The boar bristle brush looks manly and feels good against your skin. Although I have a sensitivity to fragrances, both the shaving soap and aftershave were well tolerated.
My shave was close and I smelled good, without overdoing it. Clean up was a breeze and the extra time to put my things away, helped remind me I was doing something from an era when life wasn’t so rushed.
Future Boxes – My Thoughts
I’m not sure how I feel about future boxes yet. Since there will be no more razors included, it means I’m looking to get a package each month filled with new razor blades (each month is a different brand to try), a different brand and scent of shaving soap and other items that remain a mystery. The company does state that there will be future bristle brushes included at some point. If I base my expectations on the initial experience alone, I can expect to be just as pleased.
I’m pleased to say there aren’t to many things with my Wet Shave Club experience that were negative. Although the shaving soap was a nice product, it was cheapened by the plastic dish it came in. I’m not sure if including a dish in line with the quality of the razor and brush is cost effective for the company, but it would allow for a classier feel initially and set the user up for a means to utilize future soaps that come without a wrapper.
My other issue is with the pricing. As it stands today, there are four tiers of payment. Each equals a lesser “monthly” cost overall based on the length of the subscription. One month is $29 and if you sign up for the year it equals out to $19, although you will have to pay the full amount upfront. I think sign-up would be more attractive if the cost was the same across the board, at somewhere between the $19 and $29 price. Shipping is a plus and different from other similar services I’ve seen, with free to US customers, $5 for Canada and $7.99 to everyone else.
If you’re looking to step up your shaving game old school style, Wet Shave Club is a good option. You get everything you need upfront at a pretty sweet price, regardless if you continue your subscription. The boxes are curated with quality items, that would take loads of time and experience to find on your own.
Find out more: Wet Shave Club Official