Razor: Yaqi DE Razor Head, Rockwell handle
Blade: Astra Green
Brush: Yaqi Evil Zebra Synthetic
Soap: Wholly Kaw Monaco Royale
Aftershave: Wholly Kaw Monaco Royale
Other: Thirsty Badger lather bowl

Well today, I made one of those rookie reviewer mistakes, too many new things at the same time. Sometimes it can work great, but if you do have something that doesn’t perform as expected, you can’t be 100% sure of the culprit. Today was one of those days. Today i pulled out Wholly Kaw Monaco Royale from my den, a recent acquisition I couldn’t pass up when seeing a nice deal on it. I had used a sample a while ago and recalled liking it at the time, so I pulled the trigger on the set. I also had a fellow CWS member asking about user experiences with this Yaqi head, and having received one in a recent brush order, I figured I’d give that a go as well. And since I was going Yaqi, I pulled the new Evil Zebra brush as well.

First off, I had a bit of difficulty on the lather build. I was able to get it, but it wasn’t as simple as I was expecting. I suspect the richness of the soap had something to do with it, it us a Tallow/Donkey Milk formulation with a superfat of unsaponified shea butter. It did give a really comfortable feeling soap with a really nice post shave feel. It didn’t provide as much slip as I was expecting, but that would also be just the feel of the razor head. Next go, I’ll use my daily driver to give it a real test. The Yaqi razor was surprisingly more aggressive feeling than I was expecting. I could definitely feel the blade as I did my shave. That could have been the soap, the razor, or the fact I’ve been using my gentle Gillette Tech for almost a week. Only one tiny weeper, and when I used an alum block I didnt have an insane burn, so the shave itself was pretty good. More testing will be required.

The post shave feel was quite nice, I can tell there is some quality ingredients for the skin in the product. I followed up with the matching splash. The scent on this was quite nice. From the WK website, notes are:

Top notes: Lavender, Bergamot, Neroli, Petitgrain
Middle notes: Oakmoss, Cedarwood, Tonka Bean, Ambergris
Base notes: Guaiacwood, Agarwood, Vetiver, Sandalwood, Labdanum and Musk

It is a nice blend of floural notes that dry down to the Wood/Vetiver/Mush finish. I wish the scent strength was a bit more pronounced. It didnt jump off the lather and the aftershave scent didnt carry very long. Disappointing as it is a really nice and complex scent. A nice shave but one I will have to revisit for sure.