Well what a week. WHAT A WEEK. On Wednesday we celebrated husband’s birthday. Which coincided with completion on our investment purchase!! We are officially property investors. BOOM. We got a call from our solicitor at about 4pm to confirm, just as we arrived at the sea pool for a cold birthday swim. The property is a mid-terrace in Bideford, North Devon. Currently configured as 8 bedsits and a basement 2 bedroom flat, we will be putting in planning for conversion into 4/5 flats. She is an absolute beast! We viewed it on the 15 January this year and instantly fell in love, knowing that underneath all the grot and grime, was a diamond in the rough waiting to be uncovered! We came away and ran the numbers to see if we could make it work and a week later we put a conditional offer in. After a fair bit of ‘to and fro’ with the agent the deal was done under asking. I won’t bore you with the detail, but if you are interested, we have begun documenting the development, which you can follow here.
I hope wherever you are, you’ve enjoyed some lovely Spring weather this week. We’ve had lush sunshine down here, and even managed to get a couple of cold water swims in. Once in a beautiful sea pool we are lucky to have here in Bude, and also in the sea which was perfectly calm & mirror-like on Friday afternoon. Although I have a wetsuit, it’s stayed hung up in the garage since we moved, as I am trying to embrace swimming without it. I’m not much of a swimmer though, despite loving the water. Sadly I don’t have the stamina, and to be perfectly frank I am a bit of a scaredy-cat when it comes to the sea! I know I know! A water baby that is scared of water. Ridiculous. BUT I have been in talks with a lovely local lady who is starting an open water swimming club aimed at beginners as of this week! Annoyingly with the house purchase I can’t make the first couple, but watch this space. I will of course, need to invest in a thicker wetsuit for this soon-to-be new hobby, one that is suitable for swimming which will keep me warm when in the water for longer periods.
We went on a lovely walk today and it appears it is soon to be fishing season for the fish folk of Bude. We walked along the Breakwater, watching the men bringing their boats down. Towed at the back of trucks – parking them ready for high tide to float them. One particular fisherman caught my eye – a wiry chap with a long, full white beard and hat. I thought to myself what a bloody great beard. I was completely captivated by it. I wanted to go straight up to him and ask to take his picture. But I didn’t. Because my assumptions of fishermen is that they don’t suffer fools. I expect he would have waved me off and continued going about his manly work down on the the boats. But get this – when we were walking home, it turns out he lives down my road! Maybe there’s hope we can be BFF. Picture it – oh the stories I bet he has! I will be sure to keep you all updated on.. hhmm, what shall we call it?.. Operation Moby-Dick. HA! Anyway, this week’s blog post is dedicated to Mobes, & his magnificent beard of joy. A gift guide for the grizzly beardy in your life. However, full disclosure – the husband struggles on the beard-growing front. It has certainly got better with age though, and he can grow a good tache bless him, but a full beard just isn’t in his DNA. One of his very few faults.
I’d like to also point out that this post includes gifting for male grooming in general, and lets face it – all you dudes should be doing it. Whether you or your gift recipient are single or enjoy a bed buddy – any of these gifts will help you/them look and feel a million quid. The simplest acts of self care can benefit everyone’s daily routine, not only from a hygiene perspective, but to boost self-worth and release happy hormones. Five minutes of sprucing up in front of the bathroom mirror will leave you feeling great. Trust me.
Whilst researching for this week’s blog post, I came across this gem of a product – the Suvorna BeardPal B50. Designed For men’s beard & moustache cutting, trimming, grooming & styling scissors with large finger holes & tension adjustment. And bushy-nosed chaps, I got you – it includes a handy tool to keep those pesky nose hairs at bay. Made from finest Japanese steel, meaning the edges stay sharper for longer. I love the Mad Men-esq Italian vibe this set gives me and guess what – Suvorna take such pride in their craftsmanship and product quality, they offer a lifetime warranty. Currently half-price too!
This multifunctional oil from boutique Danish grooming brand Ecooking can be used as a beard oil, a body oil or even as a pre-shave prep. Including organic jojoba oil (a natural skin restorative), organic sesame oil (to add condition and lustre), apricot kernel oil (rich in vitamin A and E and good for treating inflammation) and organic argan oil (to moisturise), it does all the things a beard oil should do, but has the hidden benefits of a great skincare staple. With a fresh, citrus scent and a deterrent to beard plaque in ingrown hairs, use it head to toe, on hair, beard, body, face and even as a massage oil meaning you can enjoy with friends (wink wink).
Yep, I know. They’re a bit pricey. However the reviews are excellent, and frankly quite hard to ignore. Even given the smart travel case it comes with, there’s little sign of style-over-substance when it comes to the functionality. The “Steel Precision” tech incorporated into its sturdy integrated metal comb and a sensor that’ll intuitively check hair density and adapt the motor accordingly to maintain consistency and power, means an excellent shaving experience is guaranteed. Pair that with long-lasting battery (two hours from an hour-long charge) and the fact you can achieve 30 lengths with just one attachment (no more plastic combs).
Seven Potions Beard Brush £14.97
Ideal for men who like simple beard tidying techniques, this brush delivers you tangle free hair while also cleaning and softening. With each stroke, the boar hairs work to carry your skin’s natural oil called Sebum from root to tip. They also work to lift and remove any dirt as well as grim from your hair. This process leaves your beard prize winningly shiny and clean. To further increase the benefits of this brush, your skin is effectively exfoliated due to the process of dispersing its natural oils. On top of brushing, cleaning and softening this brush is ideally used in the proper application of balms and oils. Use this 100% natural brush when applying your favourite products to evenly reach every inch of your beard.
Beardsmore Shirt £85
In stylish red and black checked flannel, this shirt was made for beard wearers. I mean it’s even in the name. Made in midweight 100% organic cotton, this wonderfully super soft shirt will feel super warm. Finisterre’s ethos is Sustainability as Standard, since 2003. Rightly so, they believe that the ocean’s future is our future. Their aim is to inspire a love of the sea and for us to protect it together. Check out the great work they’re doing to raise awareness as well as ongoing product innovation aimed at reducing environmental impacts here.
Maison Lambert deluxe beard kit is in a league of its own lets face it. Packaged in a beautiful wood cigar box it contains everything you need for beard care and practically oozes testosterone. All products are 100% organic and hypoallergenic, making them cruelty free and free of chemicals. Maison Lambert deluxe beard care kit is subtly scented using a blend of 100% pure essential oils, creating a naturally beautiful woody and warm scent. Handcrafted carefully in the French tradition of quality, this will make the perfect gift for your favourite bearded beast.
Fishy Beard Print £23.64
Obviously I was going to chuck some artwork in the mix. Come on. You know me. This giclée print on high-quality archival matte cardstock, by Maddy Fusco actually looks a bit like my new (soon-to-be) mate Moby-Dick. Just sans beard fish. Isn’t it just fab?! Be sure to check out the rest of Maddy’s online shop, she has loads of sea-themed pieces.
Yep a leave-in conditioner for your beard. The FineFettle leave-in beard & moustache conditioner has been formulated to condition and care for your facial hair and the skin beneath. Made using all natural ingredients, the lanolin base will hydrate and nourish skin in a way the skin attempts to naturally. Sebum produced by the skin is often washed away as part of a modern, regular grooming routine and so the leave-in conditioner is designed to help replenish lost nutrients. A deep & rich earthy scent thanks to the Peru balsam, Vetiver & Grapefruit that will leave you smelling downright delightful.
Ok so I appreciate that this is for little people. More of a gift for the beard’s offspring, or future beardy. Made for cool kids, this fab long sleeve, crew neck, kids top is decorated with an all-over sailor print & is made from 100% soft organic cotton. They have soft cuffs and neckline for easy dressing. The tops are perfect for all year round, worn alone in the summer months with a looser fit and layers can be added in the winter for extra warmth. Perfect for handing down and reusing amongst family and friends again and again. P.S House of Margoux also make ‘Hipster Sailor’ printed bottoms and rompers to complete the lewk. You’re welcome.
Less is more. Especially when it comes to your face. Personally, I think any bearded or non-bearded man should invest in a decent face wash to keep skin feeling & looking clean. Cleaning with normal soap will strip skin of natural oils leaving it dry & flakey. Ritual Face Cleanser has been formulated to avoid drying and irritation by exploiting the natural benefits of Tamanu oil, Peppermint oil, Willow bark extract and Bentonite clay. A gentle, natural, peppermint scented formulation designed for everyday use. Suitable for the most sensitive skin, this is a soft light cleanser that is free of denatured alcohol and can be used often without fear of drying out your skin or exfoliating too deep. Cruelty free.
Why not pair up your face cleanser with Triumph & Disaster’s moisturiser to keep that boat race soft and supple. A scientifically engineered hydrating cream, Dark Moon utilises Vitamin C, Olive and Horopito to facilitate healthy, vibrant skin; working silently and naturally in the deep hours before dawn. Apply daily prior to bed, or as a top up to your daily moisturising routine. Ain’t no shame in self care boys.