Soap

Christmas Gift Guide for Men

With just eight days to go until Father Christmas arrives, we can’t quite believe how quickly the season of giving has come around. We’re not yet at the stage of panic buying; however, it has to be said that most of us at The Amazing Blog, are beginning to cut it fine with our present ideas. If you too are struggling, then this week we will be providing some last minute gift guides, helping you to spend less time worrying about the tricky receivers to buy for (we all know someone), and more time enjoying the festivities. Today we start with ‘Gifts for Men’, ranging from grooming products to technology and accessories. Grab a mince pie (and a glass of something nice), and let us do the research for you.

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Firstly, we introduce The Bluebeards Revenge - a shaving and grooming company who provide products that promote a sustainable grooming routine, as opposed to the quick rush (and inevitable cuts) from using mass-market products. We previously reviewed their Ultimate Sea Salt Spray (see here), and so we were thrilled to try their Soap Stack Kit. True to their promise of creating products that are neither cheap cans of mass-produced products nor designer creams that are more akin to moisturisers, this set consists of three expertly produced soaps.

Ideal for any wash or gym bag, these soaps are unique in many ways. Primarily, the three scents are the perfect balance between providing a less feminine smell, while also promoting hydration and comfort. The first, ‘Classic Ice Soap’ is a modern twist on the British barbershop fragrance, a welcome scent that provides manliness and moisturisation simultaneously. Secondly, ‘Big Blue Bar of Soap for Blokes’ has a simple and fresh scent, and thanks to the bright blue colour, stands out amongst the sea of other generic products. Equally, ‘Cuban Gold Soap’ is ideal for days when an exotic aroma is needed (calling all Monday mornings!) With inspiration from the Caribbean, this soap packs a punch, and as a result of the unique shape, it is easy to handle, and unique to the eye. To make life even easier, these soaps come packaged in an aesthetically pleasing box, which coupled with the attractive colours, makes for a ready-made present. These soaps lather well and help to invigorate the body. To gain optimum benefits - use from head to toe, either in the bath or shower. The Bluebeards Revenge are also strictly against animal testing, and these soaps are both vegetarian and vegan-friendly - the perfect grooming gift that doesn’t involve a generic body spray or cheap aftershave. The best part? The Soap Stack Kit is affordable, at £13.99. Click here to see for yourself.

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For a man with a newfound grooming routine, a durable wash bag is undoubtedly next on the list. We turned to a brand that we know and love and discovered Morris & Co.’s ‘Refined Gentleman Washbag’, which we think fits the bill perfectly. Part of the brand Heathcote & Ivory, Morris and Co. similarly specialise in creating unique and detailed lifestyle products. We have previously featured both Heathcote and Ivory’s Inflight Essentials and Christmas Gifts Set, so were excited to try a lifestyle product aimed at the male market. Thankfully we were not disappointed!

The Refined Gentleman Wash Bag is the ideal gift for a man that is looking for some luxury. The wash bag itself is generous in size, fitting full sized products in, with ease. Thanks to the use of a zip, it also opens and closes easily, and uses vegan leather, which ensures it is wipeable, and therefore easy to keep clean. The real standout of this product is the Acanthus print, inspired by Morris & Co.’s first wallpaper design. As the primary showcase of the brand’s plan to create large-scale wallpaper designs, we like this historical link, as well as the elegant and unique finish. The inner fabric is also wipeable, made from 100% polyester, meaning any spillages can be quickly rectified. To purchase a wash bag for the gentleman in your life, then click here, where you will find The Refined Gentleman Wash Bag available for £24.

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For a gentleman that enjoys a tipple, we also came across Morris and Co.’sThe Refined Gentleman Hip Flask’. Designed with the same embossed pattern as the above wash bag, this hip flask is a classy addition to any inner pocket. Although it is slim enough to fit most pockets, it contains enough room to hold approximately 200ml of liquid. Once again, the fabric is vegan and wipeable, meaning any sticky alcohol spillages can be removed with ease. It comes packaged in a simple, and elegant box (yes - we look for presents that are easy to wrap too), and we think it would make a great present alongside the Wash Bag or would be equally welcomed with a small bottle of your receivers favourite spirit. Either way (or neither way, as it is equally lovely on its own), you will find it on the Heathcote and Ivory website for £22 - a reasonable price for a present that is durable, and sure to be well loved.

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For something a little more outlandishly festive, we came across Lime Lace. Stockists of stylish home accessories, gifts and furniture, their website offers an abundance of gifting options, from artwork to lighting and cushions. It was, however, the candles that caught our eye, in particular, The Christmas Jumper Candle the perfect balance between Christmas kitsch, and clever design.

This candle adds a little festive spirit to any room and will be sure to make your receiver smile. We must confess that we were concerned by the prospect of this candle looking too novelty, however, we were pleasantly surprised by the enormous amount of detail. The wax has been carved to look like intricate wool, and the addition of the glitter is an excellent way to jazz up any table or mantlepiece. The detail even goes as far as to emulate red stitching around the cuffs and hem, and we were pleased to discover that the glitter is non-transferable. Gone is the worry of packaging a present, only to find a product that has become distinctively less glittery in the process. Additionally, you’ll find the outer box easy to wrap, although we think it would look lovely when wrapped in cellophane, with a red ribbon bow. The size of this candle also surprised us, at 11x12cm, a decent dimension to create an optimum festive atmosphere, without being overbearing. To send a little Christmas cheer of your own, purchase a Christmas Jumper Candle here for £16.95.

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Finally, for the gadget lover in your life, we discovered Orbitkey. Founders, Rex and Charles, started the company after they decided enough was enough when it came to key organisation. Initially, it took just 30 days to gain 5,000 supporters, and with bases in Melbourne and New York, the success is now notable. Based on the concept of making key storage less bulky, we were keen to try the brand for ourselves.

Although Orbitkey have a plethora of different options, we particularly like the Orbitkey 2.0 Leather. This design comes in a vast array of colours, from simple black and stone to more eye-catching sage and tan. In a nutshell, this product provides a way to hold up to 7 keys, organising them, preventing them from scratching and providing a durable and lightweight finish. Now, of course, this product is not merely limited to men, but we particularly think the concept is perfect for men who often carry keys in their pockets. We were astounded by how convenient this product is, not just for protecting the keys, but also other ensuring other items in pockets and bags are equally protected. Orbitkey have also considered the inevitability of needing to add car keys separately, which can be done utilising the slim D-ring at the top of the leather strap. We tried the Orbitkey in Charcoal with Grey Stitching, which has proven to be popular in the office - especially among the male members of our cohort. There is also the option to monogram the genuine cowhide leather, which screams present giving to us (although you may be pushing it this week). We get the impression that design and ergonomics are paramount to this brand, which only extends further into the stylish and sleek box that the product arrived in. To encourage organisation for a man in your life, see the Orbitkey website here, where you will find this design for £35.59 or £46.23 with monogramming.

So there we go, five products that have hopefully given you a little inspiration for any gift giving nightmares. Perhaps you’ve even found a little something that you’d quite like yourself (when is it too late to add to your Christmas list exactly?) Be sure to check out the rest of our guides this week for even more inspiration, or for those of you who are indefinitely organised, perhaps these could be potential gifts for the New Year. Happy shopping!

The Somerset Toiletry Co. – Mr Manly – Soap, Mug + Bag

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Let’s face it – men can be challenging to shop for, but The Amazing Blog found the perfect solution. We previously wrote about The Somerset Tolietry CoNaturally European Sage Hand Cream and are thrilled to share their newest male products. The company created The MR Collection, a unique line of men’s products that includes Mr Soaps, Mr Mugs and Mr Toiletry Bags. The Mr Collection began only as a line of soap and after much success, expanded to toiletry bags and mugs.

The Mr Soap Collection includes four different scented soaps: sage (The Mr Manly Soapy), spearmint and patchouli (Mr Perfect), black pepper and ginger (Mr Hipster), and cedar wood and lemongrass (Mr Groomed).  Each comes packaged in a colourful paper wrapping with an image of a bearded man. The soaps are triple milled, ensuring the highest quality product, and blended with shea butter to protect and moisturise the skin.

The MR Collection includes two mugs – a Mr Manly Mug and a Mr Perfect Mug. These enamel camping mugs are a fun and different gift that won’t break the bank. Painted on the bottom of each is the phrase, “Yes, I am!” So, when your man drinks from it, everyone will be reminded of how manly/perfect they are. The mug is multi-purposeful and used as a shaving caddy or a desk tidy.

The collection’s Mr Perfect and Mr Manly Toiletry Bags are heavy duty canvas bags with a colourful water-resistant lining. The outside of both bags is a sleek grey colour with minimal decorations and either blue interior, for Mr Manly Bags, or orange interior, for Mr Perfect Bags. The bags are 255 x 170 x 120 mm making them the perfect size for travelling.

You can purchase soaps from the Mr Soap Collection here for £4.95 or the Mr Perfect or Mr Manly Mug here for £4.95. You can also find the Mr Perfect or Mr Manly Wash Bag here for £11.95.

Eco Soapia- Organic Sicilian Orange Hand and Body Wash

It’s a simple fact that you can’t make quality products without using quality ingredients, and we at The Amazing Blog have made this fact a way of life. As such we are always on the hunt for brands that also follow this belief and it has never failed us. This week we came across the legendary brand Eco Soapia who has turned making soap into an art form. Three generations of soap making knowledge have been collected to make this brand as perfect as it can be. 

With a large selection of choices, we decided to try their Organic Sicilian Orange Hand and Body Wash. Unlike conventional soaps which are created using cheap and chemically laden ingredients, which harm skin, Eco Soapia uses only organic ingredients that are Soil Association Certified.  There are no sodium lauryl sulphates, parabens, GMO’s, DEA’s, MEA’s, artificial colours or fragrances. What’s more, the product is cruelty-free and  has been approved by the vegetarian society. The soap, based on an original 1930’s family recipe, left our skin feeling cleansed and clean. The soap has a fresh and citrus scent that lasted all day. 

For centuries the vegetable-based Castile has been considered the soap of European royalty, so treat you and your skin to some luxury. You can purchase the Sicilian Orange Hand and Body Wash here for £6.95. 
 

Savon Stories

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Sometimes we beauty-lovers pay so much attention to our beauty products that we neglect our body-care routines and settle for the most inexpensive body washes at our local Boots. We at The Amazing Blog are certainly guilty of this, so we’ve made a conscious effort to move onto healthier and more organic products for our bodies as well as our faces.  Savon Stories is a company that firmly believes in handcrafting organic remedies for enduring health and beauty. We were given the opportunity to try a body wash, bar soap and lotion bar.

The Lime & Bergamot Organic Hand & Body Wash is 99% Organic and 100% Natural. It’s been cold-processed to retain as many benefits as possible from the blend of hydrating extra virgin Greek olive oil, nourishing coconut oil, castor, hempseed, and fragrant essential oils. The result is an ultra moisturising product that smells out of this world. The Bamboo Charcoal Bar Soap with Bergamot, Lavender & Rose Geranium is specially formulated to draw out toxins and absorb excess oil while deeply cleansing pores. This aromatic floral-citrus blend is highly recommended for oily and acne prone skin. Lastly we tried out the Argan Oil Lotion Bar with Mandarin, Neroli & Lavender. This solid moisturising bar is made from cold-pressed organic oils and butters that deliver vitamins, antioxidants & regenerative minerals. We love that it’s quick absorbing, leaving our skin smooth and non-greasy with a sweet citrusy and cocoa-y aroma.

Invest in some organic products with Savon Stories. You can purchase the Hand & Body washes here, the Bar Soaps here, and the Lotion Bars here.

Soap Co. – Hand Wash, Hand Lotion and Soap

Today we are totally inspired at The Amazing Blog from the minimal, black and white style of Soap Co. products.

It’s always a pleasure writing about efficient and natural products but when we can also celebrate a brand that cares about disabled people, we’re doubly happy; Soap Co. employs blind people and that’s why the name on the packaging is also written in Braille.  
If you need further reasons to buy these products just let us say that they’re all cruelty-free and eco-friendly as the packaging is 100% recyclable or totally refillable; beside it doesn’t contains any chemical that could only irritate our skin.

We were excited to try White Tea but you can also find black poppy with wild fig and citrus.
We couldn’t make a better decision. The fragrance is so delicate that it won’t interfere with other perfume you’re using but it lasts all day.
From now on the Hand Wash is something we will always have in our bathroom. Something so clear and transparent can be only made with natural ingredients.
It creates an indulgent foam that leaves the hands soft and not dry; but we always need that extra touch of hydration and that’s why we can’t live without the Hand Lotion. Same fragrance and a creamy texture that reminds us of fluffy, whipped cream. The better way to describe it is like having a layer of protection on your hands, fresh and gentle.
The Bar Soap has something retro and traditional that makes it special. The name of the brand stamped on top of the bar, or maybe the fact that every bar is hand-cut recalls an old fashion bath tub and love for simplicity.
The white tea products vahe in common the Vitamin B5, plus palm oil and aloe vera extracts responsible for a skin always moisturised and silky.

Hand wash and lotion are available here and here both at £8, and you can find the soap for £5 here.