Bay rum is the fragrance I remember most. The bottle on the left is Ogallala Bay Rum out of Nebraska, $32 for an 8 oz. bottle at Leavitt & Pierce tobacco shop in Harvard Square. It's spicy and herbaceous, even a little sweet. It's bracing on the face right after a wet shave, providing an old school cool burn that is invigorating, stopping just shy of being painful. I prefer the Special Reserve Double Strength. It tightens the skin nicely, leaving it very smooth. The scent comes on strong at first, but quickly fades in to a mere pleasant suggestion. Very masculine, very old time barber shop. Plus, the 19th century apothecary look of the bottle is just something nice to see on the shelf.
On the right is Royall Lyme, the original scent from in the Royall line. Made from a Bermuda recipe using lots of Caribbean limes, its brighter, fresher and lighter than the bay rum, making it an ideal choice for warmer weather. Like the bay rum, its bracing and astringent, leaving my skin feeling tight and fresh. At nearly $47.50 for a 4 oz. bottle at the Andover Shop in Harvard Square, it sure ain't cheap, but this bottle will last me from now until September for two years running, so that really isn't so bad. You can get it directly from the Royall web site for $40 if you like, but to me the extra $7.50 is worth going to a men's shop and buying it properly, by which I mean wearing a coat and tie in place full of coats and ties and handing over the cash, not gawking at the lap top in your pyjamas. There is still, after all, something to be said for that. Besides, all this thrifty living I discuss here is meaningless without an indulgence now and then.
This stuff makes my skin feel better and puts me in a good mood in the morning, and my little 3 year old girl always says I smell nice. Its worth every penny.
p.s. stay tuned for an upcoming dissertation on the pleasures of (gasp!) hippie soap.