I recently saw someone tweet the phrase “beards are the new abs.” While I don’t necessarily agree with that, I will concede that beards seem to be the hottest trend right now. Of course, to properly maintain a beard, you have to keep your beard trimmed and shave around it (or risk looking like you are homeless). With traditional shave creams, that can be cumbersome as the fluffy white cream makes it difficult to see what you are doing.
The folks at Duke Cannon seem to have solved this problem. Read on for my review of Duke Cannon Beardman’s Clear Shaving Gel, a product specifically designed for shaving around your beard.
Before I get fully into this review, I have to say how much I enjoy Duke Cannon. They make my favorite shaving cream, but I also love the marketing approach behind the company.
Everything they do is kinda lighthearted and fun — even the product packaging is fun to read. Their Big Ass Brick of Soap I’m currently using, according to the label, “Smells Like Victory” and the story on the back is a fun read. They also give a portion of the proceeds from each sale to support veterans’ causes. That’s incredibly cool.
Back to what we are here for — to review Duke Cannon Beardman’s Clear Shaving Gel. While I don’t have a beard (before you criticize, I can’t grow one because of my acting career and military obligations), I was able to get a great shave over my entire face with the product. Of course, I would go with their Superior Grade Shaving Cream if you don’t have a beard as it is a little strange shaving your face with a clear product.
But, for those who do have beards (especially guys with a more detailed beard), this product hits the sweet spot — it gives great lubrication while still allowing you to see where you are shaving. Back when I did maintain facial hair on a regular basis, I cannot begin to tell you how many times I screwed up the outline because I could not see what I was doing.
I suggest shaving in the shower using proper shaving technique with this or any other shave product. Beardsman’s Clear works best when the face is very wet. I did notice a little drag starting to occur, but that was resolved by splashing on a bit more water. Of course, I was shaving my whole face, so that may not be a problem for your bearded gents. One fun aspect of Duke Cannon is that none of their packaging contains directions of any kind. They assume you know how to use your shaving cream or shampoo. If you can’t figure that kind of stuff out, well, never mind. I won’t say it. It may be helpful for some, because of the uniqueness of this product, to throw on a mention that it works better when wet, but that’s a minor issue.
Overall, the product was very easy to use and quite effective. I got a great shave with no irritation. Beardsman’s Clear contains aloe to take away the burn and allantoin for moisture. They claim the product combines the benefits of pre-shave oil, shaving gel, and after-shave into one product and that holds true.
The product has a rather old-school fragrance which reminds me a lot of the aftershave the barber used to splash all over me when I was a kid (I was a stinky thing, so they were probably doing me a favor). While the fragrance isn’t really my cup of tea (or tumbler of scotch, which would be more appropriate for me), it didn’t linger after a good rinse, so it won’t clash with the frou-frou fragrance your girlfriend makes you wear.
Over the past year, I had been recommending the excellent Jack Black Nourishing Oil for those guys needing a clear product to maneuver around their beards, but Duke Cannon Beardman’s Clear Shaving Gel gives me another really solid choice to offer. You can purchase it from the Duke Cannon website for around 15 bucks for a 4-ounce tube (which should last you a good long time if you’re just using it to edge around your beard).