Barrister and Mann Bay Rum Artisan Shaving Soap, 4oz Excelsior Base

4.69 out of 5 based on 13 customer ratings
(13 customer reviews)


Samples Available: Buy Here

Artisan Made in USA

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Product Description

Way back in the glory days of salty sea dogs, sailors used rum tinctures of West Indie bay and spices as disinfectants, fragrances, deodorants, and aftershaves. Over time, many famous fragrance and shaving houses adopted the custom and offered their own versions of the classic scent, which proved to be extremely popular with barbers as well.

Barrister and Mann® is proud to offer our own version of a classic Bay Rum. Dispensing with the modern custom of using large amounts of clove, we instead blend real black strap rum with West Indie bay, sweet orange, cinnamon, and benzoin (a vanilla-like resin). Our Bay Rum is a warm, masculine classic, a piece of history, and a favorite for winter, but is well-suited for any time of year.

Net wt. 4 oz, Made in the USA


Excelsior is the official name for a soap base that we’ve been developing for the better part of 10 months, a project so top secret that, for quite some time, only two people on Earth even knew that it existed. It was eventually released to a handful of testers as Development Code: Purple Possum, and, while there were officially ten development iterations, the actual number was closer to fifty or so.

It had previously occurred to me that there were quite a few people unhappy with our transition to the Glissant base, people for whom the so-called “White Label” formula (our original design) worked extraordinarily well. It had further occurred to me that the best thing for everyone would be to take all of the advances that we’ve made in the past 5+ years, everything we’ve learned from the subsequent development of the Tre Citta vegan base, the Black Label base, the Glissant base, and the Barrister’s Reserve® base, and incorporate that information back into a design heavily informed by my original research and formulation style. The end result of the experiment is a base that strongly resembles my original White Label formula in many respects, but which is not possessed of the shortcomings of that design, namely its sensitivity to hard water and somewhat gummy consistency.

Many of you will ask, “What’s the difference between Excelsior and Glissant? What about Excelsior and Barrister’s Reserve®? Excelsior is firmer than Glissant OR Barrister’s Reserve and less finicky to lather than the latter. It produces a denser, slicker, more buttery lather than Glissant and is more conditioning and dramatically less drying. However, unlike Barrister’s Reserve®, Excelsior DOES contain lanolin, so those with a sensitivity will want to avoid trying it out.

Overall, Excelsior represents a significant upgrade over the performance of Glissant and will last considerably longer because it’s a much harder product. It produces lather similar to that of Barrister’s Reserve®, but does not exhibit the gooey, stringy characteristics of its softer cousin. Those who love the lather they get from Barrister’s Reserve® soaps but who find the soap difficult to work with will very likely enjoy the performance of Excelsior a great deal.

Additional Information


Aqua, Glycerin, Potassium Stearate, Potassium Tallowate, Sodium Stearate, Sodium Tallowate, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Milk, Potassium Kokum Butterate, Methyl Gluceth-10, Xanthan Gum, Sucrose Cocoate, Potassium Ricinoleate, Sodium Kokum Butterate, Allantoin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Lanolin, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Oil, Sodium Lauroyl Oat Amino Acids, Fragrance, Sodium Ricinoleate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Tocopheryl Acetate

13 reviews for Barrister and Mann Bay Rum Artisan Shaving Soap, 4oz Excelsior Base

  1. 5 out of 5


    Great soap. The right texture for skin. Keeps a nice lather during the shave and helps keep the skin moisturized after the shave. I will use the soap again.

  2. 3 out of 5


    I have always loved Barrister & Mann products, but this was a disappointment to me. This soap is very slick and cushioning, but that is where the appreciation ended for me. The scent does NOT resemble bay rum, it smells like orange peel and cloves. The soap is also very picky about its water content, the amount has to be just right or the lather fails. When compared to other offerings…it just doesn’t make the cut. B&M’s “Reserve” series soaps are outstanding, but this soap should go back to the drawing board.

  3. 5 out of 5


    The perfomance is outstanding, and the scent is wonderful : a very good bay rum, sweet (orange), warm and spicy (but not too “clovy”). Perfect.

  4. 5 out of 5


    I purchased a variety of samples from Maggard when I entered traditional wet shaving a year ago and Barrister & Mann Bay Rum was one of them. From day one I was hooked on the scent. The performance and outcome on the shaved was great, so I added it to my Christmas wish list for 2016 and my sister purchased it via Maggard. I’ve had three shaves with it thus far and as much as I liked my sample, loading from a full size puck using the Marco Method (discussed on Badger & Blade) was an entirely new level of pleasure, delight and performance. The lather is super slick. Lathers from some creams I like require me to rinse about 4 times before the product is fully removed from my face at the end of a shave. B&M requires about 9 splashes before the slickness is gone. So I get why the glide and protection is so great with this soap during the shave.

    I’m not exaggerating when I say this, but this soap makes me smile and giggle just thinking about it. It’s just that amazingly good.

    To the reviewer that gave it a three, give the Marco Methos a try if you have already done so or haven’t tried something similar. It’s an excellent approach to thirsty soaps, as well as hard water if I recall correctly.

  5. 5 out of 5


    This is my first time trying Barrister and Mann. I dont know what Bay Rum is supposed to smell like but this soap smells just like Oranges and Cloves to me. I wasn’t sure what to make of the smell at first but it has really grown on me, I kept going back to smell it. The soap itself is one of the best that I have used, if not the best.

  6. 5 out of 5


    Excellent! I really enjoy this soap. Great Bay Rum scent. To me, it has cinnamon base notes and avoids a heavy clove scent. Lightly spiced and works into a great lather. Rinses clean and really makes your skin feel fresh. Nice large container too. Good stuff!

  7. 5 out of 5


    First time using Barrister & Mann, Bay Rum was just great!

  8. 5 out of 5


    This is my first soap that I used up fully. So yeah, it’s that good.

  9. 5 out of 5


    Barrister & Mann Bay Rum Shaving Soap is an A+ soap. Aroma, lather, glide, protection. Sorry the guy that gave it 3 stars did so as Bay Rum like any B&M soap delivers copious lather. B&M soaps are thirstier than expected and the sample may not have given the user a chance to load properly too. Me and my nephews love B&M Bay Rum.

  10. 3 out of 5


    I wish I could say this performed better for me than it did. When I opened the sample I couldn’t wait to try it. Sadly after a number of attempts I never ended up with a lather that I thought was anything above average. Other people seem to really like it and I’m bummed it didn’t work better form. My water is pretty hard so that may be part of the problem.

  11. 5 out of 5


    Performance is great, this is a top-notch soap. It easily works up a superb lather. This soap has a great Bay Rum aroma which lingers a bit and goes well with Captain’s Choice Bay Rum. If you’re a Bay Rum fan, this is a soap that would be right at home in your shave den.

  12. 5 out of 5


    This soap smelled great when i opened it but when i lathered up it was even better scent. I used this soap, a new MR18C razor and a Astra blade I had the best shave I’ve ever had in my life period. It was my first time using all three so not sure which deserves the most credit but it was a winning combo.

  13. 5 out of 5


    I love all B&M soaps, and this is no exception. Spicy and sweet, like warm mulled cider. The smell isn’t overpowering, but delicious.

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