10-09-2018, 06:06 AM
#1
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I bought the entire collection of Wickham's shaving soap from Connaught shaving in 2016, and even a couple of backups.

I used the backups in rotation, and while it is a fine shaving soap, the performance turned out to be not quite up there with my Top 20 shaving soaps - so good performance but not great performance in my opinion.

As I usually do with all my 100's of shaving soaps, I store them in a dark and somewhat cool place, that is not near any kind of direct sunligt.

They were in a basket with all my other soaps from LPL, Sapo Varesino, B&M, CRSW, Caties, Mike's, Tabula Rasa, Nuavia, Castele Forbes and all the rest of the family.

Took a look at them last month to see how the status of my shaving soap collection was.
After a very hot summer in Denmark, one of my CRSW showed a bit of mould/weird bubbles on top of the soap and I made the choice to bin it.
But all in all the majority of my shaving soaps and creams were in excellent condition.

EXCEPT my entire collection of Wickham shaving soaps.
The backups of my Wickhams were used up and I had 8-10 untouched and unpoened Wickhams shaving soaps.
Not one survived. They all were a complete bubbly mouldy mess, that I would not even consider for a second to use, even if I scraped the top layer off the soap.

So there can be such a thing as TOO NATURAL, if you want to have  large rotation of shaving soaps and shaving creams.
I threw my entire collection of unused and untouched and unopened bunch of Wickhams shaving soaps in the bin.

The version I had was the new white container version, which is a good deal harder in texture, than the old version with the red lid.
I also owned some of the older Wickhams with the red lid, but before they even had a chance to turn, I sold them, since they were just too gooey in texture for my preferences.
I had really hoped the new more solid white version would turn out to be a great soap, but if a soap can't even make it through a little bit of Scandinavian good summer heat, they will only make it on the North Pole, I guess  Tongue

So much for saving money on wet shaving  Biggrin

Just to inform new wet shavers: Shaving soap, especially the softer ones, can turn rancid. 
My 8-10 unused & untouched Wickhams shaving soaps are a proof of that.

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 10-09-2018, 06:27 AM
#2
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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That's too bad, Claus.

Have you checked the humidity levels? That could be disastrous. You probably have to move elsewhere your other products. More will follow sooner or later.

There is absolutely no reason to buy so many soaps. Even variety has limits. I have about 20 soaps and 10 creams at the moment. And some backups. I wish I had 5 of them. I don't need more. I could have only one though and be happy with it.

When I finish what I have, I'm out! Not going to buy anything. I've spent a few thousands of euros the last 6 years, that's more than enough for a habit that turned into a hobby.



(I had a couple of Wickhams soaps, didn't find them that great TBH. Much better soaps out there. Sold them.)

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 10-09-2018, 07:05 AM
#3
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I was initially bitten by the same bug(buying multiple soap sets in one go) when I had gotten myself into this hobby. Largely I did so to save on shipping cost.

Many of the soaps would lie unused or the scent was not upto the mark for me. Sold a few, still many to be PIF'd.

Fortunately for a married man like me, I keep my shaving cabinet in my master bedroom which is occupied throughout the day and is air conditioned. Humidity levels, heat etc is taken care of.

But then, I have a small collection compared to Claus's. I can't afford the entire line up, but the top 2 of any brand is still manageable.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 10-09-2018, 07:11 AM
#4
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(10-09-2018, 06:27 AM)nikos.a Wrote: That's too bad, Claus.

Have you checked the humidity levels? That could be disastrous. You probably have to move elsewhere your other products. More will follow sooner or later.

There is absolutely no reason to buy so many soaps. Even variety has limits. I have about 20 soaps and 10 creams at the moment. And some backups. I wish I had 5 of them. I don't need more. I could have only one though and be happy with it.

When I finish what I have, I'm out! Not going to buy anything. I've spent a few thousands of euros the last 6 years, that's more than enough for a habit that turned into a hobby.



(I had a couple of Wickhams soaps, didn't  find them that great TBH. Much better soaps out there. Sold them.)

I agree.

This is why I haven't bought a new soap/cream since 2016.

I will do my best to use what I have, and hope they will survive.

If I could start all over, knowing what I now know and using the knowledge I have, I would probably focus on 10 of my preferred top brands and buy 2 soaps from each brand.

I'm never buying a cream or a soft soap again. Due to the issues with mould.

I will focus on medium hard to hard soaps now, if/when I buy again.

So CRSW Glide, if as soft as people say it is, will be a product I will avoid. I will go for the harder CRSW Select, which offers plenty of performance for me to rate it close to a 10/10 anyway.

I also threw an Acqua di Parma shaving cream in the container in the softer newer version out last month. It was used ONCE. It looked really weird.
Funny enough the older Acqua di Parma Colonia shaving soap, now discontinued, still looks in fine condition. I will use it for todays shave. This is a harder more croap like cream than the new softer and white version.

Thanks for reading.

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 10-09-2018, 07:13 AM
#5
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I've wondered about this scenario, now I know. I read that this would happen to NANCY BOY products over a year old, I keep them in the fridge.

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 10-09-2018, 07:21 AM
#6
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(10-09-2018, 07:13 AM)zipper Wrote: I've wondered about this scenario, now I know. I read that this would happen to NANCY BOY products over a year old, I keep them in the fridge.

Even though we have a large fridge, storing my soaps and creams in there is just not something I feel is appropriate.
Then I should buy a new smaller fridge for my shaving creams, not going to happen. I will have to cross my fingers and use more product per shave, than I ever thought was needed  Tongue

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 10-09-2018, 07:50 AM
#7
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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(10-09-2018, 07:11 AM)CHSeifert Wrote:
(10-09-2018, 06:27 AM)nikos.a Wrote: That's too bad, Claus.

Have you checked the humidity levels? That could be disastrous. You probably have to move elsewhere your other products. More will follow sooner or later.

There is absolutely no reason to buy so many soaps. Even variety has limits. I have about 20 soaps and 10 creams at the moment. And some backups. I wish I had 5 of them. I don't need more. I could have only one though and be happy with it.

When I finish what I have, I'm out! Not going to buy anything. I've spent a few thousands of euros the last 6 years, that's more than enough for a habit that turned into a hobby.



(I had a couple of Wickhams soaps, didn't  find them that great TBH. Much better soaps out there. Sold them.)

I agree.

This is why I haven't bought a new soap/cream since 2016.

I will do my best to use what I have, and hope they will survive.

If I could start all over, knowing what I now know and using the knowledge I have, I would probably focus on 10 of my preferred top brands and buy 2 soaps from each brand.

I'm never buying a cream or a soft soap again. Due to the issues with mould.

I will focus on medium hard to hard soaps now, if/when I buy again.

So CRSW Glide, if as soft as people say it is, will be a product I will avoid. I will go for the harder CRSW Select, which offers plenty of performance for me to rate it close to a 10/10 anyway.

I also threw an Acqua di Parma shaving cream in the container in the softer newer version out last month. It was used ONCE. It looked really weird.
Funny enough the older Acqua di Parma Colonia shaving soap, now discontinued, still looks in fine condition. I will use it for todays shave. This is a harder more croap like cream than the new softer and white version.

Thanks for reading.
I hope you find a solution, Claus!

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 10-09-2018, 07:54 AM
#8
  • Steelman
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Claus my good friend...I’m afraid those early Wickham soaps were known for those “issues”. In fact, I think that is why Wickham production halted for a year or so.

Good news is that Ian worked for a year reformulatung his soap to a much more stable base.

Pity...as I really loved the early Wickham English Rose, Lavender and Dandyism.

So bad news is you lost your stash of tallow Wickham but the good news is that there is nothing wrong at all with your storage technique my friend!!!

Hope you are living well!!!

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 10-09-2018, 10:35 AM
#9
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(10-09-2018, 07:54 AM)Steelman Wrote: Claus my good friend...I’m afraid those early Wickham soaps were known for those “issues”. In fact, I think that is why Wickham production halted for a year or so.

Good news is that Ian worked for a year reformulatung his soap to a much more stable base.

Pity...as I really loved the early Wickham English Rose, Lavender and Dandyism.

So bad news is you lost your stash of tallow Wickham but the good news is that there is nothing wrong at all with your storage technique my friend!!!

Hope you are living well!!!


Hey Ron,

I am in fact talking about the new release in the white containers from 2016. Bought at Connaught shaving.

I also owned some from the first batch, the ones with red lids in flimsy containers. They were like runny goo.

The new ones from 2016 were far more solid in texture (and container as well), so I was very surprised when my ENTIRE STOCK of them were rancid after being stored for 1-2 years.

Think about remaining stock in warehouses of Wickham soap.
It will all turn rancid.

Hope you are well too, my friend.

I will soon dust my W&H razor off and give it a go. Will post a mini review to you when that happens.

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 10-09-2018, 10:47 AM
#10
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My current jars of early-2016 vintage Wickham 1912 are perfectly fine. A great, gentle formula with a clean ingredients list and well-judged scents. The packaging may be due a revamp but 1912 is very much a top soap for me. For context, I have had other artisanal and non-artisanal soaps ‘turn’ in that time.

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 10-09-2018, 11:43 AM
#11
  • Mr_Smartepants
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  • Cambridgeshire, UK (CONUS post address)
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(10-09-2018, 07:54 AM)Steelman Wrote: Claus my good friend...I’m afraid those early Wickham soaps were known for  those “issues”. In fact, I think that is why Wickham production halted for a year or so.

Good news is that Ian worked for a year reformulatung his soap to a much more stable base.


Who is "Ian"?  Do you mean the owner of Wickham soaps?  Darron Barnes? Wink
He is reformulating the "Super Smooth" tallow base.  I have been testing v2 of the formula and it is VERY soft soap, nearly a cream.  I believe that he is going to release it in small vacuum-sealed foil sachets for traveling.  The current v2 formula is very good.

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 10-10-2018, 03:04 AM
#12
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(10-09-2018, 06:27 AM)nikos.a Wrote: That's too bad, Claus.

Have you checked the humidity levels? That could be disastrous. You probably have to move elsewhere your other products. More will follow sooner or later.

There is absolutely no reason to buy so many soaps. Even variety has limits. I have about 20 soaps and 10 creams at the moment. And some backups. I wish I had 5 of them. I don't need more. I could have only one though and be happy with it.

When I finish what I have, I'm out! Not going to buy anything. I've spent a few thousands of euros the last 6 years, that's more than enough for a habit that turned into a hobby.



(I had a couple of Wickhams soaps, didn't  find them that great TBH. Much better soaps out there. Sold them.)

Could not agree with you more.  Just way too many soaps.  Feels like some guys are in the collection mode!

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 10-10-2018, 09:33 AM
#13
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Well, I doubt if soap makers make soap with guys who store 30 years worth in their home! Not fair to criticise a soapmaker when excessive purchases is the cause of soap deterioration. Have 2 or3 and enjoy using them. Then you will enjoy buying replacements.

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 10-10-2018, 10:33 AM
#14
  • nikos.a
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  • Athens, Greece
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Sooner or later any soap that doesn't contain presevatives will eventually turn rancid after some time.

Preservatives are not that evil if I may say.

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 10-10-2018, 10:58 AM
#15
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This is interesting.  I have never had a soap go rancid on me even when I store it wet.  I know liquid and cream soaps can go bad though.  I see that their recipe has glycerin in it.  Does anyone think glycerin attracting the water has anything to do with it?

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 10-10-2018, 11:03 AM
#16
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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(10-10-2018, 10:33 AM)nikos.a Wrote: Sooner or later any soap that doesn't contain presevatives will eventually turn rancid after some time.

Preservatives are not that evil if I may say.

Yes. I agree 100%. This is why I dropped many artisan brands; the shelf life was simply too short.

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 10-10-2018, 04:34 PM
#17
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(10-10-2018, 11:03 AM)bullgoose Wrote:
(10-10-2018, 10:33 AM)nikos.a Wrote: Sooner or later any soap that doesn't contain presevatives will eventually turn rancid after some time.

Preservatives are not that evil if I may say.

Yes. I agree 100%. This is why I dropped many artisan brands; the shelf life was simply too short.


Phil, do you happen to know which artisans use preservatives in their shaving soap to make them last longer ?

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 10-10-2018, 06:44 PM
#18
  • evnpar
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I'm hard pressed to understand why you had the difficulty, Claus, other than the possibilities mentioned. I've had both of Darren's formulations since he came out with them and have never had a similar problem, nor have I had a problem with 200 or more other artisan soaps. However, the oldest artisan soaps I have are only five years old, and include Mike's, B&M in the small tins, Mystic Water, and Strop Shoppe. I do keep them in bins with lids and in a dark room relatively free from humidity. I even have creams that are five years old that have dried, but still lather fine. Of course I have pucks of Old Spice that I purchased forty years ago that are well preserved, although they've lost most of their scent. I'm sorry to hear about the loss of your soaps, and will certainly start thinking about this when purchasing artisan soaps in the future.

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 10-11-2018, 10:55 AM
#19
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For a long time I kept to 5 soaps only, no creams.  And I would not purchase another soap until I used one of them up. 

In the past year or so I have expanded slightly beyond that number, but not by too much.  My son bought me a tub of AoS for Father's Day.  My plan is to use it every Sunday, starting with a GENEROUS amount, until it is gone.  This won't give it time to go bad.  I am probably about 1/4 through it already. 

The soaps beyond 5 I keep in the bottom drawer of my chest of drawers where there is not much temperature variability. 


My plan is to go back to my original intention of keeping only 5 at any time, all soaps, and to buy a new soap only when I use one up.  I don't have anywhere near the variety some of you have, but I never have to worry about a product going back, with or without preservatives.

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 10-11-2018, 03:22 PM
#20
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(10-10-2018, 06:44 PM)evnpar Wrote: I'm hard pressed to understand why you had the difficulty, Claus, other than the possibilities mentioned. I've had both of Darren's formulations since he came out with them and have never had a similar problem, nor have I had a problem with 200 or more other artisan soaps. However, the oldest artisan soaps I have are only five years old, and include Mike's, B&M in the small tins, Mystic Water, and Strop Shoppe. I do keep them in bins with lids and in a dark room relatively free from humidity. I even have creams that are five years old that have dried, but still lather fine. Of course I have pucks of Old Spice that I purchased forty years ago that are well preserved, although they've lost most of their scent. I'm sorry to hear about the loss of your soaps, and will certainly start thinking about this when purchasing artisan soaps in the future.


I can only repeat myself:

1. The Wickhams looked fine upon receiving them from Connaught Shaving in 2016.

2. They were stored in a basket in the guest room along with other soaps like LPL, MDC and Mike’s Natural. Away from direct sunlight.

3. Upon checking my soaps my entire stash of Wickhams had turned rancid/mouldy. None of the other soaps in that basket were affected and only a CRSW Oliva Honey (also unused) and a Cella in another basket looked questionable, so I binned them with all my stash of the Wickhams. I think I had 8-10 unused Wickhams. All binned now.

4. I have no interest in smearing or otherwise speaking badly of Wickham soaps nor Connaught Shaving.

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