Shaving Product Review - Tallow + Steel "Morocco"
Value (Cost, Packaging and Performance)
Lather (Density, Glide and Feel)
Post-shave (Healing, Moisture and Feel)
Scent (Quality, Strength and Longevity)
Morocco unlocks the intense aroma of the Atlas mountains - where wild roses are carefully handpicked at dawn by locals to retain the dewy morning freshness. It is from these roses that some of the world's finest rose oil is made. Nobody knows for sure how roses first came to this remote region of Morocco, but legend has it that merchants from Damascus introduced them to the area long ago.
Combined with the undertones of Mediterranean cypress and Atlas cedar, powdery oakmoss and the delicious smokiness of cade provide a perfect counterpoint to the sweet Moroccan rose.
Morocco is a truly unique scent originating from the heart of these African mountains; just as the rose traveled from ancient Syria to the heart of Morocco, this intoxicating scent will travel to you.
I've written two very extensive articles on the new line, the first being Meet the All-new Tallow + Steel Products with the follow-up Tallow + Steel 2017 - First Impressions which covers the reformulations and performance (besides other aspects) so I won't repeat all of that here. I'm strictly focusing on the scent and any additional notes today.
I love, love, love this scent! It's hard to say whether Morocco or Boreal is number one for me, until I use them both (and the rest) more. But I can definitely say that this scent is off the rails. It's smoky... Way smoky. If you're not a fan of Barrister and Mann Roam, Mickey Lee Soapworks Unforgiven or Stirling Soap Company Texas on Fire then you can just stop reading now. Morocco eats Roam and Unforgiven for breakfast and begets a damp, smouldering log. Perhaps only Texas on Fire is more in-your-face and primarily smoke. But... This isn't just some smoky scent and end of story.
Officially, Morocco has notes of Atlas cedarwood, oakmoss, cade, cypress and rose. Each note plays a part, but clearly - the smoky, resinous, almost phenolic cade is the star of the show. The supporting cast of notes add depth and complexity, lending a green, woodsy vibe thanks to the cedar and oakmoss, the cypress giving a clean, fresh tinge with a subtle rose floating on the wind. I suspect those that have also reviewed Morocco may have misjudged the rose or the role it plays... Expecting perhaps the highly floral rose scent. You won't get that. Instead, it rounds off the other, sharper notes, slightly sweetening the smokiness. If you inhale deeply and picture the notes, you can spot it, dancing in the background. Scent strength is robust with longevity about four hours.
Alas, it seems that the first batch of Morocco - at least the soap - is already unobtainium as it was slightly tweaked for all future batches. Honestly, I don't know how I feel about that, as personally, I think the soap was bombastic in all its smoky glory... But the cade note did dominate the soap, so it's understandable. Ryan from #tallowandsteel says of this:
We reduced the smokiness on newer batches of Morocco. The aftershave was where we wanted it, but over time in the jar with the lid on, the smoke really took over the soap - so we have adjusted for that.
Like all of the new scents, and as already mentioned regarding the sourcing of ingredients from the region, 10% of profits from Morocco are donated to Moroccan Children's Trust, who's mission is to uphold and protect the rights of all Moroccan children.
Hardware for this (lately) rare Saturday shave included the custom #TimelessRazor "aggressive edition" with a #Gillette 7 O'Clock (black) blade on shave two. The #Plisson brush did the business of loading and lathering in the #GTP scuttle, which kept the seriously sumptuous suds warm. The choice of brush was partly because I hadn't used it in a while and partly to see how such a soft, floppy brush would handle loading a soft soap such as this. It performed admirably, but I stand by using a stiffer brush (with more backbone) like the Semogue Owner's Club. Subconsciously I probably also used it because L'Occitane makes a couple of cade-infused scents, most especially Cade!
Wow. Morocco is probably my second favorite scent in the new line and beaten only by Boreal. But that may change as I use them more. There is just something so powerful in Morocco (the cade/smoke) that is completely intoxicating. The robust scent strength, further amped by the hard-hitting accord itself envelopes you. Between soaking in tanning oil most of the afternoon and later the rich botanical bases of the Tallow + Steel products, combined with an insanely close, BBS shave... I was grinning from ear to ear afterwards. My skin felt so soft, supple and moisturized - the shave so perfect - that it was truly glorious.