Poll: Should I include the RazoRock Soaps I have in this comparison?
This poll is closed.
Yes, include the two RR soaps.
63.16% of votes
No, do not include the two RR soaps.
36.84% of votes
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 04-16-2012, 05:58 PM
#1
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For this comparison, I will be doing an UN-scientific comparison of the following Italian soft soaps:

Cella Crema Sapone (cut from 1KG, not the red tub)
P.160 Tipo Morbido
Vitos Extra Super All'Olio di Cocco
Valobra Crema di Sapona Purissima (AKA Valobra Almond)
RazoRock Muguet de France
RazoRock Fresco

Based on votes, RR will be included. There are also a new line of RR soaps coming out soon, but I might just make those a separate thread because I'm not sure if I will be able to get them before I'm done with the rest of the soap.

Quick Summary of Method:

This is not meant to be a long-term test, just a quick summary of my opinions on these soaps.

Each soap will be used twice, once with a boar brush, and once with a badger. A variety of brushes will be used. I use an EJ DE89L as my daily razor with a fresh Gillette 7 O'Clock Sharp Edge blade each day. I never re-use blades and won't be doing so for this comparison either.





First Shave with Vitos Extra Coco:

This was my first shave with this soap, and also my first with the Semogue 2030B. Both new products performed very well.

Vitos is a bit of a newcomer when it comes to retail distribution to the international wetshaving community...as I understand it, this stuff is primarily designed for use by professional barbers and is only "officially" sold in 1KG bricks. Luckily, it is now more widely available and some vendors have packaged it for sale in more manageable portions. This tub came from Razor Blades & More and comes in a nice blue PET jar with a screw top lid. Though not quite as roomy as some other tubs you will see later, it is more than roomy enough to get a good lather going on top of the soap with an average/22-24mm sized brush.

AFAIK, this is supposed to be Vitos "top of the line" soap, which is why I chose it over the other varieties. It is supposed to contain added glycerin and coconut oil compared to the basic Vitos product. Oddly, I don't see coconut oil listed in the ingredients, so this is either just a synthetic fragrance oil or they forgot to list it. No idea. The scent is pretty much the classic sweet smelling Almond scent you get with these soaps, yet it is more muted than P160 or Valobra and less "Cherry Cola" smelling than Cella. The coconut is there, but not in your face.

This soap gave a great shave and seemed to have some type of skin conditioning properties and didn't dry out my face. It produced lather fairly easily and was very slick with excellent glide. It also had enough cushion, but did give a very close shave. Post-shave feel was well above average though not what I would consider in the very top echelon of soaps/creams I have tried.

For AS, I splashed on some Dominica Bay Rum, which paired very well with the soap's scent.

Pics:

1) Ingredients

2) Surface of soap

3) Surface of soap after brush loading

4) Semogue 2030B in scuttle (as brush warmer) after 1 face lathering.

Attached Files Image(s)
               

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 04-16-2012, 06:26 PM
#2
  • Tonality
  • Attempted Soap Sabbatical
  • Boston
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I voted yes, but I think just the white tub "artisan" one should be included, not the black tubs, they seem more a firm cream than a soft soap like the rest of your testers.

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 04-16-2012, 06:29 PM
#3
  • Johnny
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  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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This should be a very interesting thread before it's done. I voted option #2.

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 04-16-2012, 07:36 PM
#4
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I'm ambivalent to whether you test RR or not, never having used them. I didn't vote.

I have used the 4 you listed and I know how I reviewed them. I'm curious to see how they fare with you.

I agree with your assessment of Vitos Red BTW, even down to the scent.

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 04-16-2012, 08:27 PM
#5
  • GreekGuy
  • Not saving money yet....
  • La Jolla, CA
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I think its good to include the RR soaps, as they are italian made croaps

What would be really good is if you could test the TFS BN or TV. This is my own personal opinion, but they are leaps and bounds above the other Italian croaps.

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 04-16-2012, 08:31 PM
#6
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  • Salt Lake City,UT
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I have votes yes and Im subscribed to this thread.You dont know how much I enjoyed your UK shaving soaps and shaving sticks comparison over at B&B.
Thanks a lot for taking the time to do this and Im sure that many people are going to appreciate it too.

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 04-16-2012, 09:04 PM
#7
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(04-16-2012, 08:27 PM)GreekGuy Wrote: I think its good to include the RR soaps, as they are italian made croaps

What would be really good is if you could test the TFS BN or TV. This is my own personal opinion, but they are leaps and bounds above the other Italian croaps.

I have heard many great things about those and other TFS soaps as well. Unfortunately, placing an order for those soon probably just won't happen. If I get some TFS eventually, I will definitely post something about it or add to this thread.

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 04-17-2012, 03:43 AM
#8
  • tgutc
  • Senior Member
  • Michigan
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I have been impressed with the RazoRock soaps so far and I would be interested to see how they stack up against already proven soaps. This is just a suggestion but did you consider using RazoRock's Classic and Cacao instead? These two are very similar in my opinion to the Cella and Vitos.

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 04-17-2012, 06:59 AM
#9
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I voted yes to include the Razorock Soaps. I have the Classic SS/SC By Razorock and I find it to compare with my Velobra Menthol SS really well. Plus I like the mild sweet almond scent it has.

Clayton

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 04-19-2012, 05:54 AM
#10
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First Shave With P.160 Tip Morbido:

   

1) Tub with ingredients. This is an "unofficial" repackaging into a plastic tub by Italian Barber. I like this since I don't really need 1KG of any soap.

   

2) Here is what the top of the soap itself looks like. It has more of a golden color compared to Vitos Extra Super Coco.


   

3) Here is my brush after 1 face lather, and scooping some of the extra lather from the top of the soap after building lather in the tub. The brush is an Omega Pro 49


The shave:

This soap performed well but did not blow me away at all. Part of the issue may be unrealistic expectations based on how much praise p.160 has gotten over the years. The scent is the sweetest almond/marzipan/amaretto scent (quite strong too, btw) I've sniffed out of the Italian Almond soaps I have right now. When lathered up, the scent mellows out considerably. On my first pass, the lather was too thick and needed some thinning out. The Omega had no problem whipping up the soap after a couple of minutes swirling directly on the soap. I actually had a good bit of lather left over. Glide was pretty good, though not the very best I've tried. Post shave feeling was perhaps very slightly above average but not an amazing standout.

Part of my perception of my shave may be colored by the Omega brush. This was my first time using it after many test lathers to speed along break in, and I still found it fairly scritchy. It is way scritchier than my Semogue boar brushes (1250 and 2030B) which have far less lathers on them. If you are not a hardcore boar brush guy, and/or don't like scritch, buy one of the softer Semogues instead. Now, because of this, I will make sure to test each soap once with boar and once with one of my nice badgers.

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 04-19-2012, 11:53 PM
#11
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Interesting my friend.As you,I wasn't blow away either with P160 (both versions) and I found their skin care to be ok,nothing spectacular either.
Looking forward to read more reviews of the italian soaps.Which one are you gonna try next?

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 04-20-2012, 05:46 AM
#12
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1) Ingredients. Notice all these soaps have different formulas. This one has a high proportion of Coconut Oil. This version is cut from the 1Kg brick and also came from Italian Barber. The main reason I picked this over the red tub is because I prefer more room in my tub to make lather on top of the soap.

   

2) This is my brush after 1 facelathering. Very thick lather here. Brush is an Semogue SOC badger.

   

3) This is the lather I had left on my brush after 2 passes. I normally only do 2 passes for my shaves, but I had plently of lather left over for more passes if I wanted.


The Shave:

This soap gave an excellent shave today. Lathers up very easily...nice, thick and creamy. The lather is also very slick and seems to have some skin conditioning properties similar to the Vitos. The lather does have a different "feel" than other Italian soaps due to the distinctly different formulas across brands. The scent is not what I typically think of for these types of soaps...it smells like Cherry Cola! Post shave feel was excellent. Definitely on par with Vitos though maybe not in the very top top of soaps I have.

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 04-20-2012, 08:24 AM
#13
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Nice review on the Cella. i really enjoyed the scent, but the Parfum they use must be synthetic as i had a bit of a mild reaction to it, unfortunately.

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 04-20-2012, 10:56 AM
#14
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Our reviews differ in some key respects, but where we do agree is the Cella scent being cherry and the ease with which it lathers. And the Vitos Red review. Other than that, it is like we tried entirely different products.

I wonder if it can be accounted for with brush loading? What you show after loading your brush isn't what I come out of the tub with. Mine isn't foam, but soap paste.

Not trying to create an argument, that's why I'm not going into specifics about subjective differences. But clearly our reviews of Cella and P.160 are radically different. But that's why there are so many products on the market.

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 04-20-2012, 11:03 AM
#15
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Shadow, I build lather right on top of the soap. The lather is fully formed then I face lather to fine tune. What you see on the brush is after face lathering. Also, the lather was plenty thick. No airy foam.

My opinion might change after the second run, but this is it for right now.

(04-20-2012, 08:24 AM)celestino Wrote: Nice review on the Cella. i really enjoyed the scent, but the Parfum they use must be synthetic as i had a bit of a mild reaction to it, unfortunately.

Some guys have reactions to EOs too. Natural fragrances don't necessarily preclude reactions...it comes down to the individual and what their skin can tolerate. I've reacted to unscented cream before.

I will definitely include RR due to the votes.

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 04-20-2012, 11:20 AM
#16
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Man,you are gonna get tired of those sweet/bitter almond scents!
Cella is truly a winner,maybe the best of all the bitter/sweet almond croaps that I have tried.The best is Acca Kappa,but its a shaving cream.The Second is Cella,and the 3rd and 4th are the Figaro/Fitness/RazoRock Classic and Bottega Verde Uomo/RazoRock Cacao.

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 04-20-2012, 11:31 AM
#17
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No AC for me due to the lanolin. Fitness burned me so I'm loathe to try the cacao because they are so similar .

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 04-20-2012, 12:30 PM
#18
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Sorry, I thought it was after loading. I didn't mean to imply that you shaved with foam.

I'm at a loss to understand the huge differences between our experiences then. Or how our experience with Vitos Red could be so similar.

I ranked the 4 also, but I'm going to wait until you're finished to let you know which I thought was the lowest and which I ranked highest.

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 04-20-2012, 12:40 PM
#19
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Shadow,

The next shave with the P160 will be with a badger brush. Even though I've enjoyed experimenting with boar brushes and they are becoming part of my rotation, my favorite brushes to use with any soap are high grade badgers. Will try to see if that makes a difference in the overall experience for me. I'll also try to take better pictures on the next shave. Remember, I use an Iphone camera and I'm often rushed when I take these pictures during weekday mornings.

Also keep in mind my main sources of being nonplussed with soap are due to the glide and post-shave feel I got from the soap. It wasn't bad, I've just tried better. The actual shave performance and protection of the lather was fine. I think people react differently to different formulas in soaps, especially when it comes to the post-shave feel.

For example, Lime creams/soaps make my skin a little tight, but I use them anyway because I love the scent and a little extra moisturizer at the end of my shave (which I apply anyway) solves the issue. Another example, I've seen guys on the boards wax on about how Cade leaves their face feeling so moisturized and supple, etc. but it has always had a slight drying effect on my skin...again, I keep using it now and then because I love the scent.

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 04-23-2012, 06:19 AM
#20
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1) Here is the surface of the soap. It comes in a bar, but is very pliable like all these soaps and can be easily mashed into any container. I have mine in a 2 cup pyrex style dish with a plastic cover. I find this gives me plenty of room to build lather right on top of the soap.

Here are the ingredients:

Acqua (water), Potassium Cocoate, Potassium Palmitate, Potassium Stearate, Glycerin, Palmitic Acid, Sodium Cocoate, Stearic Acid, Sodium Palmitate, Sodium Stearate, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Oil), Parfum (Perfume)

As you can see, of the classic four Almond soaps here, this is the only one that does not contain tallow.

   

2) This is my brush (Semogue SOC badger) after 1 face lathering. Scuttle being used a brush warmer only. Lather was built on the surface of the soap to load the brush using the Marco Method then taken directly to my wet face. If you look closely, you'll see the lather looks a little foamy but that was not the case when facelathered. What happens with this method of loading in a large surface container like the pyrex bowl is that you end up with more concentrated soap on the brush tips and inside the breach than you get on the perimeter of the knot. I don't mash the brush or apply a ton of pressure with loading, it just happens naturally. Anyway, once lathered on the face the consistency of the lather is nice and thick, not airy or foamy at all.

   

3) This is the surface of the soap after building lather on top/loading.

The shave:

This was actually the first classic Italian Almond soft soap I ever bought (almost 4 years ago) and the only one I had used previous to doing this comparison. I actually had a hard time with it at first, because I tried to lather it using a dryish-brush, "charging" method that was advocated on the shaving forums at the time. I can tell you that the dryish-brush method does not work well with this soap at all, IME. Until I figured out I need to start with more water, I had very inconsistent results with this product.

Now that I know how to use it, I get great shaves from it and it is very easy to lather. Lather is nice and stable, even in a warm scuttle. Very close shaves also. In fact, for pure closeness, this ranks among the very top of the soaps I've tried. As a trade off, you do not get as much protection as you get with Cella or Vitos, but the protection is adequate to prevent razor burn if you have decent technique. If your technique is very poor or still forming you may find it somewhat unforgiving. Btw, I find it also does a great job softening my beard.

Due to the very close shaves it provides, I find the post-shave feel is a little "tight" on my face but not irritated in any way. As far as the scent goes, it is different from the other Almond soaps in this comparison and strikes my nose as being "just right". I love the scent of this soap, both before and after lathering it up. When lathered up, the Almond/Amaretto scent goes to the background and you get more of a soapy/coconut oil scent. Since Potassium Cocoate (Coconut Soap) is the first ingredient, that makes sense.

Overall a great soap, but has a personality to it that will make it less universally loved than say, Cella. If you are just starting out with these types of soaps or are a new wetshaver this would probably not be my first recommendation. However, if you're like me and have very tough beard hair and like a close shave this soap is worth a try.

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