This is the second review I’ve written on a product from L’Occitane’s “Cade” line. My first review was of the incredibly moisturizing “Cade” aftershave balm. This time I’m taking a look at the L’Occitane “Cade” shaving soap. I’ll be sure to hit up the “Cade” shaving cream in the near future too.
This shaving soap is a bit of a conundrum for me, and I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to go about reviewing it. I think the best way to do this is to run through the few points that have been sticking in my mind while I’ve been working with this soap. I hope this makes more sense by the end of this post.
I had initially wanted to give the “Cade” shaving soap a poor review, but that’s not really the whole story. The more I used this soap, the more I liked it. However there are a few issues to address. For starters, this shaving soap is somewhat troublesome when it comes to building lather. I’ve used soaps in the past that just explode from the initial loading (Arko, Cella, D.R. Harris), and I’ve come across some that just never pull together (Geo. F. Trumper, Floris). This soap will come together into a pretty nice lather…if you have the patience. I’ve even included a picture for this post that shows the lather I was able to get after practicing with this soap. I found that the best setup for building your lather includes using a high volume brush like the Razorock Plissoft “Monster” or the Omega “10048”, excessively loading the brush with soap, and then overwatering your lather as you build.
Secondly, while the lather is incredibly slick (once built properly) the cushion is nonexistently thin. I was able to give myself consistently smooth shaves. And the post shave feel on this soap is remarkably pleasant, with a very light, clean sensation. But paying close attention to blade angle and pressure are crucial with the “Cade” shaving soap. Small mistakes are magnified.
My third and final point is much more subjective. I found the fragrance of this soap to be lighter than my personal preference would dictate. I’m a big fan of the “Cade” fragrance overall, but the shaving soap seems to be the most lightly scented of the products in this line. The aftershave balm even has a stronger presence. I would like to see L’Occitane increase the fragrance here. But as I said, that’s more matter of personal preference than functionality of the soap.
Do I recommend this soap? Yes, but with a caveat. I recommend the “Cade” shaving soap for experienced wet shavers, and I say this for two reasons. This soap requires someone with a bit of experience building lather. This is not a first-timers’ shaving soap. I also think the gentle hand required to navigate the lack of cushion demands expertise. So the L’Occitane “Cade” shaving soap is recommended, but should not be your first traditional wet shaving purchase.