What Crabtree & Evelyn Doesn’t Want You to Know!

By on Jul 15, 2008 in Blog Posts | 0 comments

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Delving deeper into my shaving experiments, I recently purchased a shaving brush upgrade from Crabtree & Evelyn. I was terribly disappointed with my Art of Shaving brush from the “Elements” kit. The brush is poorly made, has a rough texture and just generally feels cheap. The hairs were falling out before I even began using it. Stroking it is akin to brushing a long haired cat. Very disappointing, but I suppose that’s what you get for the money.

The Crabtree & Evelyn Best Badger brush was highly rated and is generally considered a great starter brush. I was very excited when it arrived and used it that same day with great results. At first it was not much softer than the Art of Shaving brush, but after a few uses it relaxed and several weeks later the brush is considerably softer. There has been minimal hair loss on the brush as well. Overall I’ve been very pleased and I doubt you could find a better brush for $35.00.

Crabtree & Evelyn shipped a sample pack with the brush of three items from their Naturals – Solutions for Men collection. Having nearly run out of my Art of Shaving products, I decided to give the Naturals lineup a try. What a mistake that was.

As with the Art of Shaving kit, the Naturals collection comes with three primary products – a daily face scrub (i.e. pre-shave stuff), shave cream and finally the post-shave product. I began with the daily face scrub, which is described as a “Cleansing and refining scrub with exfoliating jojoba beads…” It is meant to be used before you shave, to prep your skin for the razor. Unfortunately, the jojoba beads feel a whole lot like sand on your face, and rubbing sand all over my beard before shaving is not my idea of helping to smooth the way for my razor. It was a terrible feeling and I washed it off immediately (which wasn’t easy). It left my skin feeling tingly, as if I had just put after shave with alcohol on – and come to find out after carefully reading the ingredients it does contain alcohol. Who ever heard of a face scrub or pre-shave oil with alcohol in it? How is that supposed to be pleasant? I was angry, but decided to move on hoping that the shaving cream would redeem its predecessor.

Now there are several different methods of applying shaving cream. They include mixing in a bowl or mug, mixing in your hand, or applying the product directly to your face. The Crabtree & Evelyn shaving cream recommends to latter. Not being a huge fan of the “beard mixing” method, I decided to try lathering the cream in my bowl first. No go – not even close to being able to form a lather that way. So I tried again directly on my beard, only to find the product creating little more than a layer of white film that soon dribbled down my face and neck. The only thing more disappointing than the inability to create a lather was the burning sensation that immediately followed the application. It was a very unpleasant feeling, much worse than most alcohol based after shave lotions. Why, you ask? You guessed it – the shave cream contains alcohol as well. Not just one variety of alcohol, but two! No matter how much I tried to wash it off of my face it still burned. It wasn’t until I had applied another shaving cream to my face that it began to calm down.

So why the title? Crabtree & Evelyn doesn’t want you to know that their products contain alcohol. Check out their site for their Naturals line and view one of the products in question, then click the ingredients link. You won’t see a single mention of alcohol being used – but it’s actually present in the pre-shave, post-shave and shaving cream. I don’t know about the “Face Shield” product because they don’t send that in the sample pack. How can they advertise the products as being “Extra-mild” and “Suitable for sensitive skin”, when they really burn your face off?

Shame on you, Crabtree & Evelyn, for not being honest with your customers about the ingredients in your products! May this serve as a warning to all considering the Crabtree & Evelyn Naturals line!