When I first heard about the Local Pig butcher shop and their beef tallow based shaving cream I was very interested in trying it out, but I could never really bring myself to buy a tin of the stuff. After its initial release I waited to see what other folks thought about the product before considering the purchase of some for myself. What I discovered wasn’t great, I read several reviews of the cream which were less than complimentary and I had some bad experiences with etsy and eBay based sellers of artisan shaving soaps and creams, so I was extremely hesitant to give this stuff a chance. There HAD been some good reviews of the Local Pig’s shaving cream, and for whatever reason it kept popping up on my radar. Eventually I was to the point where I absolutely had to try this odd cream out for myself. Fortunately for me, at the same time that I was agonizing over the possibility of purchasing this cream, a give away drawing was set up by a generous member of The Shave Nook…the prize was a tin of Local Pig shave cream and a nice Comoy badger brush (which is actually a rebranded Vulfix 376S Super Badger brush). I marveled at the timing of the contest and threw my hat in the ring, hoping that I might get lucky. When the drawing came about and my name was picked, I was amazed and quite happy that I had actually won.
My prize arrived in the mail yesterday, but since I had already shaved all I could do was give the brush and cream a quick initial try. I was surprised when I opened the tin of shaving cream, it had the look and consistency of thick petroleum jelly, and had an unusual, but extremely pleasant, scent. I was afraid that something had happened to cause the cream to gel in transit, but after looking at a few online pictures I decided that this was just how the cream looked. Setting aside my hesitancy I scooped out a small amount of the cream and gave it a try. It took a little work to dial in, but after some experimentation it lathered up relatively quickly and easily. The Comoy/Vulfix brush proved to be extremely soft and capable, I look forward to using it quite frequently in the future.
Today I eagerly jumped into my shave. I decided to continue with the NOS Dutch made Max Herder Elite blade from yesterday’s shave with the notion that the blade would be a bit less aggressive on its second shave, but as this would only be my second use of this particular brand of blades I was unsure of what to expect. It’s a rare occasion when I look forward to trying so many new products at once, so to take away some of the unknown factor involved I decided to use my trusty Edwin Jagger DE86 razor. The DE86 is a fine razor with good balance and a nice heft to it. As I am very familiar and comfortable with the DE86, it is an excellent tool to use when trying to evaluate new products. With all of my new stuff gathered up I prepared for my shave.
Following a hot shower (during which my new brush sat soaking) I splashed some warm water onto my face and began to work on the cream. This time around I had some difficulty getting the lather right. I ended up with a foam rather than the thick creamy lather that I made when I initially tested this cream, so I washed off the brush and pulled out some more product to make a second attempt. This time I used much less water and worked the lather a bit longer, which resulted in a usable lather. The scent of sweet almond and honey remained with the lather and made me smile as I painted it onto my face. I performed a two pass with the grain/against the grain shave with a touch up pass on my neck and ended with my usual cold water rinse. The shave left me baby butt smooth with zero nicks and zero irritation, but it also left my skin feeling somewhat dried out. The brush was a joy to use, it holds a ton of product and applies its load easily and smoothly. The badger hair is a bit floppy, but not annoyingly so; however, I did have a difficult time judging how well it was loaded up as well as figuring out just how much pressure to use when lathering. The cream turned out to be very slick and nicely scented, but was difficult to properly dial in and provided little cushion. I can see why some folks have a difficult time with this stuff, but I think that if it were to be paired with the correct soap that it would create an excellent superlather. I will continue to work with this cream and have every confidence that I will be able to figure out how to make it sing. The Max Herder Elite blade paired up with the Edwin Jagger DE86 is the perfect combination, the razor did an excellent job and felt nice and buttery smooth against my skin, although some credit must also go to the incredibly slick Local Pig cream. In the end my shave was quite close and comfortable, but still not as good as it could be. The Local Pig shaving cream will take some work to get right and properly using this new badger brush will also take some adjustment. Given a few more go arounds with this gear I should be able to work all of the bugs out. That’s part of the joy of new shaving gear, figuring out just how to utilize it properly.
Pre: Hot shower and warm water splash
Razor: Edwin Jagger DE86
Blade: Max Herder Elite
Brush: Comoy Super Badger/Vulfix 376S
Soap: Local Pig shaving cream
Post: Cold water rinse
Edwin Jagger DE86:
Local Pig Shaving Cream: