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Mens Grooming: It’s Time For A Little Sophistication, Gentlemen

The daily grind of preparing oneself to face the world keeps getting more sophisticated, but also more fun. Looking younger and smelling better should be a given, not a burden.

Art-of-shaving-shavingShaving is a right of passage that men have little choice over. But modern technology has allowed us to have a little fun with it, as even our dad’s era razors have come back as “new and improved” chic with closer than ever results. And the Art of Shaving just keeps rolling out the hits—without a single miss.

Enter: The Power Shave Collection featuring the Fusion Razor. With its perfectly weighted handle, the Fusion adds a micro-pulse that helps you reduce friction and increase razor glide. Using smart technology, a built-in indicator light begins to fade from vibrant blue to white with every razor use, taking the guesswork out of when to change your blade. Best part? It uses Gillette Fusion blades for easy re-stocking. Also new this season is my favorite shave products, Ocean Kelp with light aromatic essential oils. The lineup comes as a deluxe grooming kit or sold individually.

Malin+Goetz-men compMalin + Goetz has long stood as emblematic of being strong, simple and effective; it’s simply a very hip apothecary. Plus they’re just really cool people with innovative and necessary regimens that take the doldrums out of personal grooming for man and man’s best friend (pooch). Having had the pleasure of meeting the M + G team  (and enjoyed cutting Matthew’s hair at the iconic @RudysBarbershop), their belief in quality products they produce is not only sincere, it was born out of the exasperation of personally dealing with allergens and skin disorders. If you tend to be allergic or sensitive, start filling up your shopping cart. Mine tends to get full here, so I’ll hit the high note suggestions for you. Start the day (or date night) with Peppermint Body Scrub, proceed with their Bergamot, Sage or Rosemary Body Wash and feel like a terrific smelling conqueror! Facial Cleansing Oil is formulated with grape seed, avocado and olive oils, while Replenishing Face Serum and SPF 30 Face Moisturizer anti-age, hydrate and protect and prepare you for the day (they also disappear perfectly). Can I get you somethin’ to drink? Mojito Lip Balm. Offer you a smoke? A little Cannabis Perfume Oil on your wrists, neck and behind the ears will surprise and delight. TIP: The latter (one drop) is also a great base for your favorite cologne. San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury neighborhood never smelled this good.

RA-for-men-raw-elementsRA for Men. Rhonda Allison has always been a respected, powerful skincare brand for the select few. Their Royal Retinol from the original lineup is in my Top 10 forever. The RA men’s line, once only found at high-end salons and spas, is now available online. And they take grooming and anti-aging seriously. Buffed Granular Scrub is professional strength and not watered down. The Shave Oil Antiox Serum and Shave Gel Aloe & Glycerin Balm is luxury shaving at its finest. Rezone Sake Toner will make you never forget this vital step. I promise. Complex VI Hydrating Serum and Radical Redux Skin Corrective will have you thinking there actually could be a fountain of youth. People will notice. I highly recommend honing in on your needs via their site, taking their short Skin Assessment or just calling.

OK, so maybe you don’t collect couture fragrances for men. But going to the office, to the movies or the symphony may require a different scent—not to mention different times of the year. The world has finally come of age, with regard to being socially acceptable for men to explore their well-groomed, sweet-smelling side. I repeat, “parfum” isn’t exclusively for the ladies any longer. In men’s or true unisex fragrances it simply means more pure, pungent and longlasting. While Eau de Toilette (EDT) refers to strong, but less pure than parfum, which is more wearable for the office, for example.

Absolute-Absinthe-Flacon-Aa-grandI had the good fortune of finding new DNA staples in my fragrance repertoire. The Crafting Boutique are careful curators of luxury French parfums and scents. I fell in love with three: Jouany Parfumeur’s offers St. Barthélemy which resembles filthy rich, mature, old-world European bourbon nights (vanilla, coco jasmine and cedar), while Marrakech brings a playfully fresh, devilish, daytime sensuality with orange blossoms, white musk, bergamot, grapefruit and neroli. Absolument Parfumeur’s Absolument Absinthe delivers one of the most zippy, daytime indulgences ever with black Chinese tealeaves, tangerine pulp, cannabis and bergamot. Putting these scents on gives you something to look forward to. If you tend to be more of a branding snob (welcome!), then look no further than Diptyque Paris. Their Volutes fragrance could easily be one of the few scents you could consider ever wearing, if forced to spray an eau de toilette (or parfum) every day, forever. It’s widely considered one of the top and sexiest scents ever—equally suited for either men and women. I thought it was quite rich and masculine, but amazing. Their Tam Dao fragrance also comes in a shower gel, which they describe as Asian jungle using Sandalwood, Rosewood, Cypress and Ambergris. Body washes this fragrant can almost be worn scentless, without a cologne or fragrance. So nice.

Jouany-Marrakech-Saint-BarthelemySo, most of us have lived long enough to know we can sometimes infect ourselves, even when we’re trying to do be as hygienic as possible, particularly when we’re shaving or brushing our teeth. Foreo’s LUNA for men is a next century handy device that uses the most ultra-hygienic silicone tentacles to lift a beard. But flip the LUNA over and you now have a light, flat-surfaced, pulsating wave that deposits your serums and concentrated treatments (such as Vitamin C serum) or… But the same, never gets gross, anti-microbial silicone that comprises LUNA, also makes up another new best friend, ISSA. This brand is not only taking the electric toothbrush to new heights, but supplying brush heads that don’t harbor bacteria and need not be replaced for an entire year. That’s my kind of product.

Now, we can look younger, feel better, smell great creating or own signature scents and save time with hygienic, results-producing grooming gadgets. Spring means feeling good, looking great and being active. I tip my hat. After all, Summer is right around the corner.

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