Posted by: Matt (Jordan’s husband)
So, I haven’t done any of the research that my wife has into all-natural products. But I’d like to think that I have, in part, been a source of her enthusiasm for natural-ness. I’ve been eating all-natural (with certain exceptions like that incredibly delicious nacho cheese at baseball games) for over ten years now. My decision to eat naturally wasn’t based on any scientific finding or ethical principle. It was based entirely on urban legend and the hormonal logic of an 18-year-old boy.
I think the internet often gets a bad rap. I hear smart people talk all the time about how the internet isn’t a reliable source of information; how Wikipedia is written by a bunch of cranks in their pajamas. Well for those of you who aren’t old enough to remember a time before we had the internet, let me put on me get on my old curmudgeon high horse and tell you how things used to be. Before the internet, all we had for information was rumor. OK, maybe I’ve overstated my case, but I’ve based my gustatory principles on a rumor I probably heard at a taco bell over a chilito when someone told me that the Yellow 5 in Mountain Dew kills your sperm. That’s it. The whole reason that I’ve been eating all natural all these years. I thought it was absolutely crazy that Mountain Dew could serve up a sperm-killing soda and no one thought that there was anything wrong with that. Of course, from the perspective of an 18 year old boy, having your sperm killed off is about the best thing that could possibly happen. But who knows if all the other artificial flavors, colors and preservatives out there might actually do something really harmful to you – like give you zits.
I must admit that I’ve been slow to get on the all-natural personal care product bandwagon. And I think a lot of other guys would understand my lack of interest. As a guy, all I really want is to pick a product once in my life and then continue using the same product until the day I die. I don’t like “new and improved formulas”. I don’t like new packaging. I don’t like change. However, I’m also opportunistic, and if my wife happens to have a new shower gel in the shower and I’m all out of my Lever 2000, I’ll go ahead and use whatever she’s got. That’s how I’ve come around on the Dr. Bronner’s–that stuff is great. And all that crazy philosophizing they’ve printed on the bottle makes for great reading while you’re in the shower.
But I’ve resisted nearly every other attempt Jordan’s made to convert me to all-natural products. I still use my ADA approved Crest toothpaste and my old trusty Speedstick. But a few months ago I thought, “maybe I should try to find an all-natural shaving cream to replace my Gillette shave gel.” My thinking was that the razor is probably cutting my skin at a microscopic level, and whatever is in my shave gel is probably going straight into my bloodstream. So if it’s going to go straight into my blood, it should be all natural.
You obviously haven’t been reading this blog if you haven’t noticed my wife’s obsession with all things Weleda. So it’s only natural that Weleda would be the first shaving gel I’d try. My first impressions weren’t positive. When I squeezed the tube, out came a stream of beige cream. I tried to build a lather up with my fingertips, but the cream just disappeared into my skin like a moisturizer. I squeezed out a little more – thinking this would be a ridiculously expensive shaving cream if you have to use this much every time – and tried using some water to build a lather. That didn’t help either. I was stuck. Maybe I need one of those fancy shaving brushes? I resigned myself to shaving without lather and tried rubbing what was left on my hands into my beard. I ended up with a pathetic little coat of shaving cream on my face and consequently ended up cutting myself a few times. Not a good first try.
Jordan persuaded me to persevere and to try it for a week. Eventually I had a break through. The key is to put the cream directly on your face without trying to build a lather on your fingers, and then rub it in vigorously, using the bristles of your beard to agitate the cream into a lather. Well… lather might be a generous word to describe what you end up with. It’s certainly not the blue-tinted clouds of cooling foam that you get with the synthetic Gillette foam, but it’s enough to get the job done without cutting yourself. And after a few weeks, the razor burn that I used to get with my old product started to disappear. Maybe the harsh chemicals were causing the burn? Who knows? But either way, I’m a convert. I’ve found the shaving cream I’ll use for the rest of my life.
Yeah right… you think my wife, the product junkie, will leave me in peace with my product? I’m sure I’ll be back here soon reviewing something new she’s foisted on me. I guess we all have our crosses to bear.