Like most traditional wet shavers, I am not a big fan of brushless shave creams. They take away one of the nicer steps involved in the process: the shaving brush. In spite of this I have managed to come across a few brushless shave creams that I actually like. Every Man Jack’s line of creams is one of them. When I discovered that EMJ had come out with a line of “premium” shave products aimed at traditional wet shavers, I took notice. One of their offerings is a lathering shaving cream that can be used either with or without a brush. Their EMJ Cedarwood Brush/Brushless Shave Cream intrigued me. I found this product available at drugstore.com for the amazingly low price of $9.99/8oz. tub.
Drugstore.com is a great site, with excellent customer service, and fast delivery. They often have sales and have some of the best deals that I have ever seen on traditional shaving products. I use them regularly and get 5% back on everything that I buy from them. Combine that cash back system with free 2 day shoprunner shipping (an excellent membership service which I also got through drugstore.com) and they just can’t be beat. I had about $4 in “drugstore.com dollars” just waiting to be spent, and I found a 10% discount link, so I decided that now was the perfect time to buy a tub of this interesting EMJ cream. I popped it into my shopping cart, applied my 10% discount and my $4 worth of “drugstore.com dollars”, and ended up paying $5. Total. With free 2 day shipping. For 8oz. of shaving cream. Awesome.
Today I was off and I knew that my tub of EMJ Cedarwood would be coming, so I bummed around the house while I waited for the UPS guy to show up. When he arrived I snagged the package with a quickly mumbled “thanks” and tore into it as the door was closing. Inside was my well packed prize. The Every Man Jack Cedarwood cream comes in an extremely thin and cheap cardboard box with faux cedarwood grain and the usual “Our product is the most awesomest product EVER!” propaganda. The tub is a large plastic tub with a metal top and some more of the faux cedarwood grain design. My tub had a minor scratch down the front, but was otherwise fine.
I opened the tub and took a big whiff. The scent is a “masculine” sort of scent with a woody undertone. I do not usually like masculine scents, but I didn’t mind the EMJ Cedarwood, and I actually find the scent growing on me more and more with each whiff. The cream has a sort of dry whipped cream texture that is fairly common among mid range shaving creams that come in tubs. I scooped out a healthy large almond sized amount and did a test lather using my AoS Fine Badger brush.
The first thing that I discovered is that this cream requires a lot of product to lather properly. I ended up using about two and a half almond sized portions in order to get a good lather. This amount is still not all that much, but it was a bit more than I was happy about using. Once I had enough product I found that it lathered quite well and was able to take on a good amount of water. The scent remained strong while lathered, but did shift to a slightly more woody tone. As soon as I had the cream lathered properly, I jumped into the shower, and then prepped for my shave. I finished up in the shower, grabbed my Fromm hair shaper with a Fromm blade at the end of its life, added a little water to my mix, lathered it up, and dove in. The cream provided a good amount of protection and was fairly slick, but did thin out a little during my second pass. I added a tiny drop of Kiss My Face Pomegranate Grapefruit to my lather and the mixture thickened right up and also smelled fantastic. After the shave I was left with a pleasant cedar scent lingering and an extremely smooth and soft face.
On the up side, Every Man Jack Cedarwood cream leaves my skin feeling great, is nice and slick, comes in a huge tub, and does not cost much. On the down side, it requires a large amount of product to lather properly, can become anemic, and smells a little more “masculine” than I normally like. In the end I found that with a little experimentation this cream worked very well, but it is not in the same league as TOBS or even The Body Shop’s Maca Root cream. EMJ Cedarwood is worth the $10 price tag, but only because it comes in an 8oz. tub rather than the more common 4oz. to 5oz. sizes that most other shaving creams offer. This is not a bad cream, but it’s not quite where it needs to be. With some slight reformulation EMJ Cedarwood could become a great cream. In the mean time I will continue to mix a tiny amount of the Kiss my Face Pomegranate Grapefruit in with it to get an amazing lather and a fantastic scent.
Ratings (1-10, 1 being the absolute lowest and 10 being the absolute best):
Scent Quality: 6
Scent Strength: 8
Lather Quality: 5
Skin Care: 8
Every Man Jack Cedarwood Brush/Brushless Shave Cream: