Paul Smith and the scents of Portuguese traditional barbershops

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The Portuguese art of shaving, with traditional scents from ‘eau de cologne’ to shaving soaps, is now available in one of the most renowned stores in Covent Garden in London. Inside Paul Smith store, located in this busy area of the British capital you come across a whole range of products by Antiga Barbearia de Bairro, one of the most interesting brands from Portugal whose mission is to bring back the traditional art of shaving and the typical scents of traditional barbershops.

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The aim of this brand, created by the Portuguese company 100 ML, is to revive traditional men’s grooming habits, by offering high quality products. Luis Pereira, the man who came up with this idea, went on a relentless research process, inquiring about old techniques, talking to barbers and looking for the best factories producing this kind of products. This resulted in a very interesting cluster of companies working together to produce this high quality range of products. E-sensis, is the company in charge of  the scents for both the brand’s soaps and ‘eau de cologne’. The soaps are produced by one the best soap company’s worlwide, Castelbel. Semogue, in turn, is the company in charge of producing the fine shaving brushes. The end-result is a range of products whose scents and packaging draw inspiration in Lisbon and Oporto’s most traditional neighbourhoods.

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Sir Paul Smith, one of the most renowned British designers and a true master of European elegance knows well the markets where he operates. The addition of Antiga Barbearia de Bairro  to the range of products on offer at his stores fits in his strategy of offering high quality products to an European audience as “the attitude in England, France or Italy is much more elegant” as he once told Esquire Spain. As for Antiga Barbearia de Bairro, which in English could be translated as The Ancient Barbershop Around the Corner, this point of sale adds up to the numerous outlets worldwide where you can find its products. And should you come across an nice-looking traditional barbershop in your neighbourhood, please let them  know as 100 ML is currently compiling information and photos of traditoional barbershops in Portugal and in the world in order to publish a book for future reference.

Carlos Tomé Sousa

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