Razor: Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements Prismatic
Blade: Statum Platinum Chrome
Brush: Ever-Ready 100T 24mm 2 Band Badger
Soap: Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements Hotel Cecil
Aftershave: Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements Hotel Cecil
One thing I have always appreciated about Doug with Phoenix Artisan Accoutrements is his appreciation for historic scents in the wet shaving space. He has a vast knowledge of wet shaving history and keeps much of it from being lost with time. Sometimes that is via a soap/splash that pays homage or brings back a vintage or historic scent. Other times it is by breathing new life into an iconic razor design. In a time where we often get focused on new and fancy, he shines a light on some of the great things that got us here. An appreciation for history is one of the reasons I got into the hobby so you can see why I have such an affection for PAA—today’s shave is a testament to that.
Hotel Cecil is one of those historic scents, paying homage to vintage Burma Shave. I can’t say I was familiar with the scent but I decided to blind buy. I wanted to take the gamble. I really enjoy these vintage smells, even though they often aren’t the most wearable today. PAA has a set called Black Bot which is an homage to vintage Black Belt cologne and it is one of my favourite scents. Maybe this will dethrone that scent.
The scent on Hotel Cecil (and OG Burma Shave) offers notes of Talc, Cardamom, Vanilla, Tonka Bean, Kephalis, Sandalwood, Cedar, Nutmeg, Black Pepper, Oakwood and Oakmoss. It is distinctly throw-back but also timeless enough that it is very wearable today. I’d describe it as an alternative take on a classic barbershop fragrance. It is very smooth and clean. It has a bit of warm spice but not overly so. There is a touch of subtle sweetness, and there is for sure a powdery aspect to it. Scent strength is a medium which is perfect for this style of scent. I absolutely loved this fragrance, and while it didn’t unseat Black Bot as my favourite PAA scent, it will definitely be in regular rotation. So glad I picked up the matching splash which was the perfect end to the shave and allowed me to carry this scent for several more hours. If you like powdery barbershop-style fragrances and have a love for throwback scents, this is a must-buy.
The razor I used today is also a bit of a throwback. The PAA Prismatic is their take on the Kirby Beard Co Razor of England. This unique design has a scalloped top cap and a unique safety bar that allows the lather to flow freely. It has a sleek profile that is very nimble. The scalloped cap and open area behind the safety bar allows lather to flow extremely well. The razor is very smooth and the audible feedback is unreal, by far the best of any razor I’ve used. This is such a fun little razor and very budget friendly at $25USD. I absolutely love this thing. I see PAA has a slightly modified take on this in stainless steel called the Meta4. I really want to add it to my collection, I just need to watch for it to return to stock.
A fantastic vintage-inspired shave today. All for now – J