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Beard Oil & ‘Man Soap’… Smells Like Adventure

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A new trend in the aroma sector, companies large and small have begun making products that smell like the outdoors and are marketed as ‘manly.’

smells like adventure

The average American spends an ungodly amount to smell pretty. Men and women alike buy soaps and powders, sprays, sticks, and slimes with which we slather ourselves in order to cover up the fact that we, in fact, are humans who produce odors.

A new trend, the products here smell like the woods. They smell like a very clean adventure. My wife appreciates that.

Since I, by no means, am a man who should smell flowery, I’ve tried and tested many of these products and have had my wife choose the best for your olfactory pleasure.

Waxing the Stache
The author pauses during a “beard test” phase

Just to be scientific, we used a two-week expedition funk as our control, so be glad you weren’t around for that. I packed and paddled about a hundred miles without any real attempt at cleanup and my wife insisted that I burn the shirt at the end. Each of these products scored immeasurably higher in our blind sniff test.

Every Man Jack

Every Man Jack Cedarwood Body Wash ($5 at Target)

It smells clean and woodsy — less cedar, more generic forest — but in a very good way. Sadly, the scent doesn’t stick around long but it’s nice while it lasts.

Mountaineer oil

Mountaineer Brand Beard Oil—WV Timber ($12.50 at Amazon)

This softens and conditions your facial hair and I tend to rub any excess into my head (or chest) hair. It smells incredible and requires anyone wanting to share in the aromatic joy to lean in close, so make sure to notify your lady friends. When it’s time to church-up your face warmer, grab a tin of the brand’s WV Timber Mustache Wax ($12 at Amazon).

Dr Bronners

Dr Bronner’s Magic Soap (From $3.19 for 2 oz)

Founded in 1948, Dr. Bronner’s is non-flowery, multi-use soap with scents like tea tree, peppermint and eucalyptus. Beyond the highly entertaining bottles covered with sage advice, the company’s Castile Liquid Soaps are biodegradable, vegetable-based, and useful for everything from washing body, face or hair, to dishwashing, mopping, laundry and even pest control. Super concentrated, just a tiny bottle will get you through a week in the backwoods.

art of shaving

Art of Shaving Sandalwood Shave Soap ($30 at The Art of Shaving)

For those of you wanting a more feminine texture to your face, look no further than The Art of Shaving’s Sandalwood Shave Soap. It smells great and conditions your skin while you shave.

pine tar soap copy

Grandpa’s Pine Tar Shampoo ($14 at Walmart)

It smells like a more natural version of Pine Sol but in a good way. I usually cut it with an unscented shampoo/conditioner because it’s strong enough you could use it to strip floors so be prepared for the cleanest hair you’ve ever had.

leather deoderant

Sam’s Natural Deodorant—Leather ($9 at SamsNatural.com)

This stuff smells somewhere between the leather air freshener you rubbed on a three-day-old shirt in college and the briefcase you got at graduation. Great memories, and it’s apparently better for you than the drugstore brands.

Craftsman Soap Co.

Craftsman Soap Company Rough Stuff Soap ($6.50 at CraftsmanSoap.com)

This is, hands down, the best product here. It’s made with ground-up rocks, walnut shells, coffee, and charcoal to strip away whatever grimy funk you’ve collected on your last adventure. While it doesn’t have a scent of its own, the fact that one scrub-down session took care of two weeks of river water, boot sweat, and BO earns it a top spot on my list.


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