SOTD - November 9, 2016

Mickey Lee Soapworks

Shaving Product Review - Mickey Lee Soapworks "Jefferson Square"

From the same mailcall last week came this surprise release from Mickey Lee Soapworks called Jefferson Square - a lavender tour de force in #soap and #aftershave form. I could not resist.

Much like Friday's SOTD with Jūraté I won't get into the performance too much here. Suffice to say that the soap and aftershave are both excellent performers, and a really good value at $32 for the combo. The soap produces copious amounts of somewhat billowy lather with very good cushion and glide as well as residual slickness while the aftershave provides a face feel that is quite supple and nourished feeling. See that post for more on the ingredients. Let's talk about the scent, then.

The official description is that Jefferson Square is pure lavender. It is floral and sweet with herbal notes and balsamic undertones. No synthetics in this soap, just a rich blend of essential oils of English lavender, spike lavender, topped lavender and lavandin grosso. That's a whole lot of lavender! There's no arguing that it's floral, but I didn't find it as sweet as expected; the herbal and balsamic qualities definitely tempered that aspect of it... Not quite as herbal as Barrister and Mann Lavender nor was it as complex and rounded as say, Chatillon Lux Champs de Levande but rather just a combination of different lavenders for the true fan. It smells exquisite, as expected - yet not too floral and sweet so as to come off as too feminine. No, if you're a lavender fan then you should definitely check it out. The scent strength is on the lighter side of medium and the longevity not as "obvious" as is typical of #mickeyleesoaps but definitely there - and for a while, you're really in heaven. I still get whiffs of it after six plus hours, so that's not too shabby! Let's break down the different lavenders a little:

  • English Lavender - botanical name Lavendula angustifolia and known as “true lavender" - generally accepted as the lavender aroma. Lavender 40/42 is primarily the sweet floral smell.

  • Spike Lavender - with a high percentage of 1,8- cineole and camphor, it is a combination of both traditional lavender and the sharp, medicinal, camphoraceous aroma of eucalyptus.

  • Topped Lavender (a.k.a. French/Italian/Spanish lavender) - much higher in linalyl acetate but less linalool than lavender with an aroma more intense, with balsamic undertones.

  • Lavandin Grosso - chemically simpler than plain lavender, it offers a wonderful aromatic balance and is herbal and green, less floral, and more camphoraceous in notes.

Hardware today consisted of the #Merkur #Futur razor fitted with a #PolSilver on shave five and set to "3" for a nice, close "Monday morning" shave (I've been traveling and had quite the stubble from the last shave on Sunday morning). The #BSB Shaving Brush whipped up the suds in the #GTP scuttle, which kept things nice and warm... Ahh, I missed thee!

As with other Mickey Lee Soapworks products, I can't recommend them highly enough. The scent complexity and depth isn't up there with some other artisans, nor is the ultimate performance, but they should appeal to a wider variety of people and it's hard to argue the value considering the ingredients and resulting performance. Definitely a thumbs up on this one.