I normally eschew high-end department store shaving products, mainly because they’re intended for multi-blade cartridge razor shavers, and most of the products are also very strongly scented. One exception has been Clinique, who makes a very fine line of unscented men’s shaving and skin-care products, although once again, their shave cream is really not great with a DE razor.

A product line that seems to span both the gourmet shaving world as well as the metrosexuals, is Jack Black. I see their products at places like Holt Renfrew’s (Canada’s leading shi-shi department store chain), as well as on web sites like Fendrihan’s which cater to guys like me.

Last week, while at Holt’s buying my first loaf of Poilâne, I also took the plunge and bought a jar of Jack Black Supreme Cream Triple Cushion Shave Lather. Here’s the description from the Fendrihan site:

“Jack Black Supreme Cream triple-coats your skin with Macadamia Nut Oil, Glycerin and Soybean Oil against razor burn, irritation, nicks and cuts. Supreme Cream offers the superior shave and skin treatment benefits of Jack Black Beard Lube technology in a thick, creamy formula. Leaves skin velvety soft, hydrated and refreshed.

Jack Black creates carefully formulated, premium quality, high-performance, easy-to-use grooming products for men. They incorporate the very finest ingredients and the latest technologies to create formulas that are not only effective, but also lightweight and non-greasy, fragrance-free, colorant-free, cruelty-free and dermatologist tested”.

It was the fragrance-free description that attracted me. And the price at Holt’s was the same as on Fendrihan. I also bought a small pump-bottle of Jack Black Double-duty Face Moisturizer which has a sunscreen built in.

The jar indicates that the shave cream can be used with or without a brush, which left me less than optimistic that it would perform well on a good badger brush, i.e., it’s tough to be all things to all people.

I was wrong. This is one exceptional shave cream. It works beautifully with a brush, although it doesn’t produce that never-ending lather that is characteristic of purpose-made shave creams. The lather does not seem to be enhanced by the addition of more water as one usually expects from traditional shave creams. A small amount of shave cream, does however produce just enough lather for three passes. And what passes they are! The cream is very lubricating and very cushioning of the blade. There is only a very faint soapy smell, extremely pleasant.

The post-shave moisturizer was also extremely good. Both products will be mainstays of my shaving kit in the future.