SOTD - June 28, 2018

Tallow + Steel

Shaving Product Review - Tallow + Steel "Madagascar"

Value (Cost, Packaging and Performance)

Lather (Density, Glide and Feel)

Post-shave (Healing, Moisture and Feel)

Scent (Quality, Strength and Longevity)

Each bar has three metrics, each representing 33% of the total (11% = below-avg, 22% = avg, 33% = above-avg, except cost)

Extending their 2017 lineup with 2018 releases comes the second of three reviews - Tallow + Steel Madagascar #soap and #aftershave!

Journey to the beautifully unspoiled island of Madagascar, and experience its amazing biodiversity with this natural floral scent.

Madagascar is a wonderland of shifting landscapes forgotten by time—trek beneath the green canopy of the tropical rainforests, or relax in the long shadows cast by the majestic baobab trees.

Madagascar is an uplifting fragrance that will whisk you away to an almost unreachable place that is rich with adventure and beauty.

Long-time readers may remember the two very extensive articles on the new line last year, 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 much of that here. There's a lot of new things to talk about for the 2018 products, which were released on June 15, 2018. This is the second of three reviews. For more in-depth information and background on the 2018 releases I strongly encourage you to check out the review of Kyotoand final impressions mainly, but also Sicily.

The scent is described as:

  • Madagascar - Madagascar is an uplifting fragrance that will whisk you away to an almost unreachable place that is rich with adventure and beauty. Ylang Ylang (54%) | Katrafay (28%) | Vanilla (10%) | Rose Geranium (5%) | Ravensara (3%)

So let's talk about the scent of Madagascar which surely many are wondering about. Officially, it's described:

Using essential oils sourced directly from Madagascar to reflect the island’s rich and unexplained biodiversity, this floral scent centers around some of the finest ylang ylang essential oil produced on the island. Combined with a sweet geranium rose oil, these floral notes will slowly subside making way for flora endemic to Madagascar - spicy ravensara, and green woody katrafay. Ever-present during the aromatic journey is a touch of the intoxicating scent of the island’s famed vanilla – prized for its warmth, and rich liqueur-like sweetness.

So, distilled down it has notes of ylang ylang, katrafay, vanilla, rose geranium and ravensara. What you might notice about the 2018 line is that scent notes are all followed by a percentage in an attempt to better inform people about dominant notes. Though it should be said that it doesn't give the whole picture, as some notes are more intense than others.

Two notes that stand out are also sourced from Madagascar (besides the ylang ylang and vanilla)... Katafray is distilled from the bark of an oversized shrub, and historically used by the Malagasy people to relieve the pain of rheumatism. It is said to be anti-inflammatory and useful for pain relief and soothing for inflamed skin. The aroma is dry and woody with a sweet, powdery dry down. Ravensara is distilled from the leaves of the tree named ravensara aromatica sonnerat (a.k.a. agatophyllum aromaticum) which is a rainforest tree native to Madagascar. It is said to ease occasional respiratory complaints. The aroma is lightly spicy, camphorous and woodsy/herbaceous.

Let's talk about real world experience (from the aftershave, as it should be). On open there's a strong ylang ylang note tempered by the sweetly floral rose geranium in the background. Moving towards the middle, the fragrance turns more spicy, more woodsy and slightly camphorous. The vanilla and rose geranium creep in more and more as we enter the bottom with a sweet, powdery undertone. Finally, what remains is the powder and rose geranium combining equally to form the base. Essentially a powdery floral on dry down that's sensual and beautiful yet oddly masculine. Definitely a warmer weather scent and leans towards daytime wear. The scent strength and longevity is the highest of the three 2018 scents. Longevity is a good 2+ hours.

As with most other #TallowAndSteel products, Madagascar also contributes to a relevant charity. 10% of the profits from Madagascar will be donated to SEED Madagascar - an organization working to enhance the capacity of individuals, communities, organizations and government in fulfilling sustainable environment, education and development goals in southeast Madagascar. To learn more about their cause or donate, please visit their website.

As with the Kyoto and Sicily reviews regarding the soap, this version is rather similar to the previous version. The scent does seem to shine through a bit better without the base coloring it. So a checkmark in that column. Slickness also seems somewhat improved, though it's essentially outstanding in both formulas. Likely the result adding safflower oil. Lathering seemed a bit easier, though it's wasn't an "official" goal of the reformulation. The lather was abundant; dense and very creamy with excellent primary and secondary slickness.

Hardware for today included the all-black #StandardRazors razor with a #PolSilver blade on shave two. The obvious choice for today's brush seemed to be the Fiery made by #TurnNShave and sports a 26mm Motherlode knot. The #GTP scuttle rounded things out.

A second use of the new stuff, and a quick recap. Like all Tallow + Steel offerings, it's a bit pricey because of the ingredients and shipping from Canada but of the highest overall quality and absolutely unique scents. Madagascar itself is the strongest and longest lasting of the three scents released by Tallow + Steel for 2018 and scent-wise is truly sensual and beautiful. Check in tomorrow for the next - Sicily!