Shaving Soap Review: Maggard’s Orange Menthol:

Posted: April 23, 2017 in Shaving Articles

Ease of Lathering: Very easy. This soap loads quickly into the brush, rivaling anything I’ve used. It always created plenty of lather for a full shave, and the performance of the lather was consistent. No failed lathers, no watery messes. The soap can tolerate quite a lot of water, and creates a lather that is both thick and voluminous. I would call this about as soft as anything that is called “soap”, at least as it stands coming out of the sample container. As delivered, it could have functioned in a tube. That’s how soft it was. This initially concerned me, as I was going to press it into the bottom of a bowl and lather it like a soap. Would it be used up way too fast? (more on this later)

Protection: Through the run of this soap, I’ve been using the Razorock Hawk razor, which is known to be incisive and require good protection. The Maggard’s soap always provided me with plenty of support, and I didn’t suffer any nicks, cuts, or irritation that could be blamed upon the soap. Thick and thin layers seemed to work equally well.

Residual Slickness: Auxiliary passes proved to be comfortable and safe with this soap. It also provided a nice face feel after the shave, never giving me the sense that it was drying out my skin or giving me any chemical irritation.

Scent: I like citrus scents, particularly orange. I find that this soap has a nice sweet orange scent. Not the pungent orange zest scent, but the sweeter type you might associate with orange candy, perhaps. I didn’t really catch any menthol spike in the scent, for me. I would say that the strength of the scent is present, but not strong. It doesn’t hang around much, to my nose, after the shave. Clearly not enough remains of the orange scent to interfere with your aftershave or cologne. Overall, a pleasant scent, but not strong or complex enough to make you swoon with joy or wrinkle your nose in disgust (unless you hate oranges, in which case…)

Production/Value: The Orange Menthol soap, as mentioned earlier, was very, very soft coming out of the tub. For me, I’d probably leave the cap off a full puck for several days to let it solidify just a touch. It doesn’t need blooming or a high-backbone brush, that’s for sure. I found that it worked great with a Plissoft synthetic, and that it took no real effort to load. That being said, my fears about it ablating too quickly proved to be unwarranted, as it hardened up (to some degree) being left out in the air between shaves, and also did not prove to need a great deal of product to create a great lather. Maggard’s offers this soap at a very fair price, considering it is an artisan soap made in small batches by hand. I believe that the soap maker behind Through the Fire Fine Craft soaps makes the soap for Maggard’s, but I could be wrong on that count. In any case, it has proven to be an excellent soap, and I would say that it is well worth your dollar, if one of the Maggard’s scents sounds alluring.

Notes: I have very few negative things to say about this soap. The scent is nice, its performance is excellent, and the price is reasonable. If I could make one critique, it is that the menthol content is not quite strong enough for my taste. I find that I only get the faintest hint of menthol cooling right at the end of the shave, even when I dither and let the face lathering go on longer than strictly necessary. Yes, there is menthol there, but unless your face is far more sensitive to it than mine, it’s almost not enough to warrant having the word in the title of the soap. For me, I’d double down on the menthol to give the soap a bit more kick. Everything else? Leave it like it is. Recommended.

Cheers, and happy shaving!


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