If you haven’t heard of American grooming brand, Malin+Goetz, before, where have you been? I remember first seeing their products when I started TheChicGeek. That was over 7 years ago and, now, they are opening two stores in London simultaneously: one on Upper Street in Islington and the other on Covent Garden’s Monmouth Street.
Left - Malin+Goetz's new Islington store. Open now
The brand was founded by Matthew Malin and Andrew Goetz 12 years ago in New York’s Chelsea neighbourhood. Over the years, their award winning formulations and iconic packaging have expanded along with their growing portfolio of stores in New York and Los Angeles.
Malin+Goetz products have become synonymous with healthy skin. Every product has been formulated with trusted natural ingredients along with performance focused tech- nologies to deliver exceptional results in the most gentle way – even for the most sensitive skin.
Right - Wake up with zest! Malin+Goetz Bergamot Body Wash - £17
Now, Malin+Goetz open their first London flagships (as well as their first UK e-commerce site www.malinandgoetz.co.uk). Each London shop has its own distinct architectural design. The local firm, Jonathan Tuckey Design has produced two concepts. Islington is in a late Victorian building and features a dynamic shelving grid fabricated from cedar plywood that undulates from horizontal shelving to covering ceiling. A new shop front incorporates a period curved glass entryway, and a stunning green fascia and shop front and also includes an antique apothecary counter from the late 19th Century.
The Monmouth Street’s shop front is imagined as a large scale retail television. Almost becoming a kinetic diorama from the street, you enter the shop from a velvet lined tunnel to discover an elegant dashed shelving system of compressed dark paper supported by dowels on a birch plywood wall. The ceiling is fabricated from seamless reflective material that continues to enhance the concept of retail theatre.
Malin+Goetz Stores - 146 Upper Street, Islington, 6 Monmouth Street, Covent Garden
Left - Malin+Goetz also do candles. Malin+Goetz Tobacco Candle - £37
WIN - Competition!
Look out for the Malin+Goetz stencils appearing on a street near you. If you spot one, take a picture and post it to Instagram using the hashtag #MGUK and tagging @malinandgoetz and you may be chosen to go in store and collect an exclusive Malin+Goetz prize. Good luck!
Right - Don't look up! Look for the Malin+Goetz stencils on the street
This brand new formulation delivers high performance and long-lasting SPF 50 UVB and 5* UVA broad-spectrum in a sun block that works to defend skin from premature ageing due to sun exposure.
It utilises cutting-edge micro encapsulation technology which quickly forms a breathable, ultra safe protective shield on the skin - think Gortex for the skin! - to ensure uniform coverage in a water resistant, non-whitening, non-greasy serum that gives hassle-free, safe invisible protection.
Left - FIT Skincare - Sun Protect Serum SPF50 - £35
It also contains vitamin E which helps shield DNA from the damaging effects of free radicals, protecting against unsightly dark spots and wrinkles. Hyaluronic acid to continuously hydrate and kees skin supple whilst the OXY- FIT-10, FIT’s unique oxygen delivery system, fuels skin cell regeneration.
FIT’s new manufacturing method ‘high energy homogenisation’ means particle sizes are reduced and the ingredients are dispersed evenly throughout the product, resulting in an even distribution on the skin.
TheChicGeek says, “This says it’s ‘the first and only sunscreen serum created exclusively for men’, and about time too! The majority, 90 per cent, of your skin’s visible ageing comes from the sun and sun exposure. The easiest and more effective way to protect yourself is, to either not go in the sun, boring or unavoidable, or apply a high-factor sun protection. So, think of a product like this as an anti-ageing product and one you should use all year around.
This is one of the best high-factor face products I’ve tried. It’s really light, has a nice zesty/lemony scent, and you don’t notice you’re wearing anything, which, I think, is down to the micro-encapsulation technology.
I initially thought this would be much more than £35. Unlike most serums, they recommend you put this over your moisturiser and to use on face, neck and ears. You could just use it as a moisturiser as it contains plenty of moisture type benefits. Lastly, just because it’s a high factor, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t reapply. You sweat, swim and miss bits, so reapply every two hours.”
Philips OneBlade can trim, edge and shave any length of facial hair with ease. With men shaving fewer than three times per week, and only 9% of men 18-24 shaving every day, the Philips OneBlade has been specially designed to suit the modern man’s needs. Men no longer want ‘baby smooth’ skin and a clean shave, but rather are looking to shape and tweak their longer facial hair with one, easy-to-use tool. The Philips OneBlade is neither a shaver nor a trimmer, and it can be used both wet and dry.
Left - Philips OneBlade - Exclusive at Boots - £34.99
Philips OneBlade combines rotary shaving technology with the benefits of a trimmer in one simple tool, and features a hybrid razor with a replaceable head. The product is perfect for both shaving and facial hair edging, and also comes with 4 clip-on combs (1mm, 2mm, 3mm, and 5mm) that transform the product into a trimming device. OneBlade’s innovative cutting mechanism moves 200 times per second, and its glide strip and skin-friendly polymer shield mean that it doesn’t shave too close and never clogs or pulls.
TheChicGeek says, “What I like about this, apart from the design, is the size. This is perfect for the detail required on your face. The scale of the gadget is designed for a man’s face rather than his hands. Many trimmers are way too big and you are often blind to what you are doing.
And, even though an added cost, I like the logic of replacing the heads. It comes with 2 blades in the box, which it says lasts up to 8 months. So, that’s 3 blades a year, if you use this intensively. Each refill head is £11.99 or £19.99 for 2.
Aimed at younger guys - it’s reflected in the price - it does come with tool heads to vary the length of the hair. But as usual, as with all these trimmers, they are really plasticky and take away an element of control. It gives you a decent cut on the sides of the face. Where it does struggle though, is the chin, as it has limited flexibility on what is quite a big blade head and can’t really follow the contours of the face. I tried to trim my moustache. I just wanted a simple, straight line above the top lip, and its limited strength and thus control on longer, coarser hairs made it not as neat as I would like.
I do like the fact it is waterproof so you can rinse under the tap and that it looks more like a trimmer designed in the age of Apple or Dyson. This is definitely a step in the right direction design-wise, it just needs more strength and greater flexibility, but you could buy worse for the money.”
TheChicGeek says, “How unruly are your brows?! Trust Tom Ford to come up with a new product category for men’s grooming. The eyebrows are, clearly, now, a thing, well, if you subscribe to the Tom Ford school of grooming, it is. He’s launched a few new products as well - Shave Oil and Exfoliating Energy Scrub - but the most interesting and novel is the ‘Brow Gelcomb’.
“Simply twist the bottom and out comes a dark grey gel on to the comb part of the wand. I was worried - I have ginger brows - that the colour would darken them, but this wasn’t the case and they quickly dried without being sticky or noticeable.
According the blurb, it is 'designed to groom and refine while giving balance and symmetry to a man’s most masculine facial features'. This is for the man who has everything, so, again, that’ll be Tom Ford.
n.b. This doesn’t give permission to overly shape or pluck those furry slugs. Just tidy.”
Left - Tom Ford for Men - Brow Gelcomb - £32
Swiss grooming brand, Cellmen, is the only cellular skincare brand specifically designed for men’s skin. The 'UltraCell Intensive' is a 12 day intensive treatment which works to re-energise the skin using active stabilised bio-integral cells that work in harmony with our own skin cells. As a result, skin is left detoxified, lifted, refined, revitalised and firmed. It is recommended as an intensive skin treatment 2 to 3 times a year.
TheChicGeek says, "Firstly, this is one of the most expensive products I’ve ever tried. £335 for 12 days!! The packaging certainly reflected this, with 12 individual glass phials all securely sealed with a pipette to apply.
After the second day, I had to send an e-mail to the PR to ask if I’d actually been sent the proper product and not a dummy filled with water. The product has no smell and the consistency of water, which made me wonder whether it was simply water?? When you’re pipetting the product onto your face and watching it run down your chin, it's difficult not to think somebody is playing a trick on you.
The kind PR offered to send a sample she had on her desk, which, when it arrived, was exactly the same. I carried on using each phial, fully, for the full 12 days, barely able to look at myself in the mirror!
I’m not really sure what to think. There was no difference to anything, other than I felt I’d washed my face twice before bed. Could this be the Vetements of grooming products?!"
Left - Cellmen - UltraCell Intensive (12 phials) - £335
Following the global success of Aveda best-selling hair care system, Invati, Aveda introduce, Invati Men - a two-step system specifically designed for men to address one of their biggest hair care concerns, thinning.
Powered by naturally-derived ingredient innovation, formulated with a blend of plant actives, Invati Men Solutions for Thinning Hair is designed specifically to meet the unique needs of men. This easy two-step system helps improve the look of thinning hair - 4 out of 5 men say their hair feels stronger and looks thicker.
Left - Invati Men Nourishing Exfoliating Shampoo - 250ml - £25.50, Invati Men Scalp Revitalizer - 125ml - £45
TheChicGeek says, “I’ve used the original Invati and I’m a fan. It even felt thicker than any other shampoo when you were simply massaging it on to your head. The new Invati Men shampoo is naturally thicker in consistency than the original and does the same as before. The second step, which you leave in, is a serum, powered by Amla - an Indian gooseberry, which thickens hair at the root. I put this on wet, as soon as I got out of the shower, really massaging all over, covering the hair fully and leaving it to dry.
“I have thinning hair so anything that makes your hair feel thicker and fuller is welcome. But, with this, it actually felt like it was weighing my hair down. It gave me than beanie-type feeling, like when you’ve being wearing a hat all day. I think the best solution, for me, disappointingly, would be to avoid the serum and just stick to the shampoo.”
Poxrucker & Co. was founded by international makeup artist, Alicia Poxrucker, who found she was encountering more and more questions from her male clients about how they can improve the appearance of their skin and benefit from the power of skincare and grooming products.
Finding a lack of products specifically geared towards men, even with her reach as a makeup artist, with almost two decades’ experience, Alicia decided the only way to keep her clients truly happy was to create her own premium range.
So, after extensive research and development, Gentleman’s Polish was born: a lightly tinted, mineral-based makeup with a smooth, sheer finish designed especially for men’s skin.
Above - Poxrucker & Co - Gentleman’s Polish - Mineral Sheer Tint - 30ml - £35
The multi-tasking formula helps reduce the dreaded man-shine and contains light diffusing pigments that help to diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It’s perfect for the gentleman who wants a pick-me-up after a late night or a long winter, before a big date or job interview.
Gentleman’s Polish is oil and paraben free and hypoallergenic, so it’s suitable for all skin types, and it contains SPF 20+ for sun protection.
TheChicGeek says, “Sounding a bit like something you should be spreading on toast, this is the first men’s specific foundation I’ve encountered. I’ve tried BB and CC creams before, all which have a slight tint to the product to hide blemishes and even out the skin, but none has felt as light and as natural as this.
This is you on your very best day. I don’t think I’d apply this everyday, but as the blurb says, this would be great for the morning-after-the-night-before, when trying to look less like death or possibly a date or job interview. There’s an SPF 20 in here, somewhere, even though it didn’t mention this on the sample I was sent. Whatever you do make sure you get the correct skin colour, I went for ‘light’. If in doubt go for a lighter shade.
My feedback would be that the branding and packaging doesn't do this justice. It needs a more serious approach. I like the name, it just needs better branding and nicer packaging for the £35 price tag."