It was my great pleasure to talk to the Harvey Nichols team recently about all things fragrance. If you want to know what my favourite eau de toilettes are and want a few tips about how to buy and wear fragrance check out my Q&A with them here.
The Bluebeards Revenge is a Great British success story. Founded by former Royal Marine Commando David Hildrew (a man who, as much as anything, is living proof that moustaches can look cool) it’s gone from being a small company based around a high-performance shave cream to one with a whole range of grooming products stocked in the likes of Tesco. Its signature products contain an ingredient designed to slow down stubble growth and as a brand it’s fun, clever and accessible. Here the Bluebeard-in-Chief himself chats to me about blogging, his best shaving tips and yes, that impressive ‘tache.
GG: David, on a scale of 1 – 10, how well groomed would you say you are?
DH: I would award myself a “Len Goodman style” 7! All the essentials are covered (I shave daily of course) but there is room for improvement.
GG: You’re the owner of a fantastic ‘tache I must say. What are your best tips for moustache maintenance?
DH: Yes – mine harks back to the day when any self-respecting Bootneck would sport a growler to grow icicles off as he yomped across the Falkands or Norway! Luckily, I come into fashion once a year now that Movember is all the rage. As for maintenance – sorry to disappoint but mine is a free-spirited beast and is left to its own devices bar the odd trim. That’s not to say that it might not benefit from a dab of Grecian 2000 one of these days.
GG: What’s the biggest mistake men make when it comes to shaving?
DH: Rushing the process, a lack of preparing the skin, and using poor quality shaving products.
DH: The traditional shave has made something of a comeback over the last few years – double-edged razors, shaving brushes and the use of shaving creams have all become popular again. But top billing goes to an unprecedented interest in cut-throat shaving – mainly as a result of the scene in the James Bond Skyfall movie of 2012.
GG: What’s your best skincare tip?
DH: Man up and moisturise – sorry men, we are not immune from the ravages visited upon us by time, the elements and a busy lifestyle. The ladies are right on this one!
GG: Desert island grooming product?
DH: A fine, Damascus steel cut throat razor – so useful in so many ways beyond just the shave.
DH: As a married man with 30 years before the mast I have long since worked out that my favourite fragrance really ought to be what Mrs Bluebeard prefers! Right now she seems to be keen on the classic Alvarez Gomez range.
GG: What’s your best shaving tip?
DH: Take your time (preparing the skin properly before the shave is vital), use good quality products and watch some of the better “How to…” videos on YouTube.
GG: You use the term “The Ultimate Shaving Experience For Real Men!” in your branding. What do you mean by “real men”?
DH: The strap line is meant to be tongue-in-cheek – we make no real judgement as to what we believe a “real man” is – even though in a shaving sense it’s someone who suffers from ultra-tough stubble and has a five o’clock shadow by lunch. In truth though most men are pretty much convinced that they qualify for “Real Man” status and we are just appealing to that belief. Taken in context, most everyone understands that The Bluebeards Revenge is all about a self-deprecating, humorous approach to life in general and grooming in particular. Hopefully we bring a sense of fun and adventure to the daily routine.
GG: As a former Royal Marine Commando what do you say to guys who reckon taking care of their skin isn’t very…butch?
DH: Sorry guys it’s only a matter of time before the penny will drop! Life isn’t a rehearsal and I can give you a rock solid guarantee that you will eventually regret not taking care of your skin from an early stage in life.
DH: Our original Shaving Cream – it is what started the whole thing off! From vanity project to an internationally recognized and respected brand in three years. An amazing product that has taken us on an incredible journey.
GG: How important do you think male grooming blogs are these days are what do they bring to the discussion about male grooming?
DH: I am totally biased on this one as it is has been the support of the online, specialist blogging community that has taken The Bluebeards Revenge from a humble start-up to where it is now. Crucially it is the variety of opinion and expertise made so accessible to all and sundry, on a world-wide basis that makes them so valuable.
GG: Fantasy grooming product?
DH: We are currently working on a creating a new slant on the Double Edged Razor with a view to making it as easy to use as the mass market cassette style razors that dominate the shaving landscape. May not sound too exciting but the engineering and manufacturing challenges we are facing places the project firmly in the land of fantasy at the moment!
For more info on The Bluebeards Revenge visit their site at bluebeards-revenge.co.uk