There’s been countless articles on the boom of male grooming, and they usually come with a horrendous stock photo of a smiling twink rubbing some sort of cream into his chiselled, smooth cheekbones. There’s no doubt that men’s interest in the way they look is growing, particularly in the UK (outstripping France, Italy and Spain this year in terms of sales), we think there’s something more interesting going on than the Mail headlines that echo the ‘mansome’ pack of footballers from ten years ago. Rather, whilst we still think that lines such as ‘new study reveals 1 in 4 men now use moisturiser’ (real byline. Ridic) aren’t doing anyone any favours, when you consider today’s options, there’s no wonder men are getting excited about grooming again.
Take the new men’s grooming department in Harvey Nichols, for example. We went down on its opening, and fell into an Aladdin’s cave of men’s grooming. From beard moisturiser to more leather based cologne than a Berlin club, (alongside household brands Aqua di Parma, Hugo Boss, Versace, Armani et al) it was fit to bursting with ways to treat your manly self. And our favourite bit? The inclusion of Murdock London, a grooming brand that has, perhap singlehandedly, reinvented the beard down south. Taking a traditional, personable service to grooming, and adding in modern flair and experimental ingredients (Craig, my barber for the day, rubbed VOLCANIC ASH into my face), makes it an experience you want to repeat. We had a half hour beard trim and facial, and our skin never felt better. It’s an old fashion notion, sure, but why we ever forgot how good it was to sit down, have a nice chat, and get your skin feeling smoother than a baby’s bum, is beyond me.
Find out more about Harvey Nichols Leeds here, and check out Murdock London here. (Oh, and if you’re in the market for buying him a fragrance this year, get one from Murdock. We smelt the full range and very nearly wept over how good they all were. Seriously. Amazing.)