Oh man. I wanted to like this soap. I really did. I sang the praises of Sweet Comb Chicago’s beard conditioner and beard oil back in November. The folks at Sweet Comb are extremely nice. I love the focus on natural and sustainable ingredients. But this soap just doesn’t have it for me.
The Sweet Comb Chicago shaving soap does have a lot going for it, and I want to make sure those positives get some attention too. As I already said, Sweet Comb is focused on natural, environmentally-friendly, and sustainable products. I am one hundred percent in support of this. The packaging is fantastic too. Sweet Comb’s shaving soap comes in a solid metal tin, with extra space for building lather, waterproof labels, and a unique honeycomb imprint in the soap.
With a refreshing fragrance, balanced in citrus and floral aromas, this would be an excellent choice for warm-weather shaving. Unfortunately, this soap is missing the key feature: lather. I tried working with this soap in October, skipped during Movember, tried again in December, and then again this week. I can’t get a lather that works. Usually I get a light, foamy lather popping right off the puck of soap. This initially seems impressive, but that thick, creamy lather we all want never seems to come together. And once I get that thin lather on my face, it immediately falls apart and dries up. I’ve tried different brushes, drier brushes, water-logged brushes, adding no water, adding excessive amounts of water, and everything in between. Nothing seems to work. I can’t figure out what the trouble is. My only guess is the inclusion of the ingredient beeswax. I’ve never seen this listed in a soap’s ingredients before, but I am not informed on the technical/chemical process of soapmaking. If any soapmakers could comment on this, I know I would appreciate it.
I hate writing a bad review. There’s no passion in it. I don’t feel good about it. But I do think people appreciate recommendations on what not to buy as much what to buy. I also take bad reviews as an opportunity for a manufacturer to improve. My purpose is to relay feedback, hopefully, improving the manufacturing process. I hope Sweet Comb Chicago is able work out these bugs in their shaving soap. There is a lot of potential here, the soap is just not there yet.