July’s “Best in Show” box was packed with grooming greatness—and with the team at DETAILS magazine lending a hand in the selection, we expected nothing less. But while a nod from a DETAILS editor is nothing to shake a stick at, tried-and-true results are an endorsement all their own. Here are 10 things we learned while smoothing, styling, and scrubbing this month’s samples.
If your hair is especially oily, a shower can feel like a Catch-22. You either skip the shampoo and suffer, or wash your hair daily and risk drying it out. A third, preferable option is to call in a haircare specialist—Number 4 Hydrating Shampoo is designed to be used every day, cleansing and nourishing hair without stripping its natural moisture.
After browsing the menagerie of modern-day razors, you’d think that space-age tech was the key to a stellar shave. In truth, it’s a simple formula. The Truman Razor from Harry’s has five steel blades for smoothness, a zinc alloy core for heft, and a well-balanced handle for precision control. It’s everything you need, for less than the price of a Sazerac.
As a preventative measure for skin cancer and signs of aging, SPF protection is more than a beach-day concern. In truth, UVA/UVB shielding should be part of your daily routine, and the best way to work it in is with the help of a hybrid product, like Clinique for Men’s Moisturizer SPF 21.
If you’re going to pay for something and put it in your home, there’s no reason to settle for anything less than artwork. After all, the product you use each day is the one that’s worth an investment. The craftsmen at Izola take this notion to heart, putting a high-design spin on everyday essentials, like this simple ceramic Soap Dish.
On a list of product ingredients, a word like “Azulene” might slip by unnoticed. However, this skincare savior is far from a chemical additive—as an extract distilled from chamomile, it serves as a powerful remedy to irritation, inflammation, and even the spread of bacteria. In a product like Anthony Algae Facial Cleanser, which is made for sensitive skin, the pay-off is immense.
Nothing inspires adventure like the rustic scent of pine, and to our everlasting joy, the benefits don’t stop there. Woodsy oils like fir, cedar, vetiver, and spearmint all serve as natural moisturizers, as we learned from the gentle lather of Ursa Major Fantastic Face Wash.
When it comes to fast-acting skincare, ingredients are important, but the way you impart those ingredients matters even more. If you need a quick fix for under-eye puffiness, an eye cream may not cut it: Recipe for Men Under-Eye Patches have a special Transdermic Cosmetic Delivery system, which infuses skin with a deep dose of moisture for instant results.
For an up-and-coming brand, a category like lip balm can be a tough nut to crack, and drumming up street cred can take some serious shock and awe. V76 by Vaughn pulled out the big guns with its Lip Balm V76, which sports not one, but three hydrating butters (shea, cocoa, and jojoba) for a matchless dose of moisture.
These days, when you hear the word “myrrh,” it’s normally preceded by the phrase “gold and frankincense.” However, this spice got its rep for a reason—as an aromatic resin derived from a desert shrub, it packs a bitter, smoky aroma that can punch up a subtle fragrance—like the DETAILS award-winning scent of ODIN 11 Semma.
Shavers are often faced with a deep-seated dilemma—the choice between the style of a heritage brand, and the high-tech performance of a newcomer. Luckily, many old-school shaving brands have been stepping up their game, swapping out alcohol splashes for more soothing postshave solutions, like Proraso’s Italian-made Liquid Aftershave Cream.
Copywriter, cold brew advocate, purveyor of handcrafted birthday haikus since 2009.