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  • Bartigan & Stark Nil: Unscented Shaving Products, Made by a Healthcare Worker

    by Nathan Gareau Last updated: April 15, 2021

    If it wasn’t obvious before, the last year has made us painfully aware of how important healthcare, healthcare workers, and Alberta Health Services are to all of us. You might know of Glenn Loveless as the founder of Bartigan & Stark, makers of fine grooming products in Kent of Inglewood’s hometown of Calgary, but did you know he’s also a respiratory therapist with Alberta Health Services (AHS)?

    Last year Glenn launched his first line of shaving products, and has recently expanded their lines by adding unscented options, which we are thrilled to stock at Kent of Inglewood. I got the chance to chat with Glenn (long-distance, of course) and ask him a few questions about his new products, and how his day job relates to his night job.

    Bartigan & Stark's new unscented Nil Shaving Soap

    Bartigan & Stark's new unscented Nil Shaving Soap

    Nathan Gareau: Thanks for sitting down with us Glenn. Last year you released your first shaving soap and aftershave balm, which I am happy to say was very well received by staff and customers. This year you're launching the unscented line, What inspired you to get into shaving products?

    Glenn Loveless: Thank you for this opportunity, Nathan. As you know, our initial offerings were for beard and moustache care, and then hair care. While those categories serve many of our customers, we also want to offer products for all folks, whether they have facial hair or not. Incidentally, lots of women use our hair and shaving products too.

    I made my first shaving soap a few years ago, and was not happy with it. Due to time constraints, I placed it on the back burner, hoping to return to it at some point. Then COVID hit, I initially found myself with some free time, so I decided to pull out some of the old projects and commit to finishing them. The first one I reached for was the shaving soap. After much trial and error I was able to formulate a product that I could be proud of. The Timberyard scent has been with me since Bartigan & Stark's beginning, so I decided to incorporate that fragrance in the very first soap.

    NG: Awesome! Your passion for quality is definitely a big reason why we stock Bartigan & Stark.

    I understand that you're a healthcare professional with Alberta Health Services. Did this inspire or inform your choice to create an unscented product? 

    GL: Lots of people react adversely to fragrances, so it's important that workplaces are safe and inclusive. This is especially true in the hospital setting, where patients may also be at risk. I'm happy to say unscented products are becoming more readily available, and folks have more options now than ever before. When I received requests to make unscented shaving products I decided to see if I could create something not only fragrance-free, but also full of healthy ingredients for the skin. So yes, healthcare has definitely inspired our products.

    Glenn Loveless, the man behind Bartigan & Stark

    NG: Inclusivity is definitely important to us as well, so we’re proud to have unscented offerings. For those who don’t know, just how important are scent-free products in a medical environment? 

    GL: In the healthcare setting, the creed is 'first do no harm'. A scent-free environment is not only important for patient safety, it helps to establish a safe and comfortable place of employment. 'No scents' makes good sense.

    NG: Wow, no kidding. It sounds like that creed carries over into the creation of your products as well. Do you have any other products in the works for your shaving line? Anything else that could be used by healthcare workers?

    GL: We offer matching aftershave balms with our shaving soaps. These balms can easily be used as daily moisturizers, as they have protective and restorative properties. We are developing several other shaving soaps; Our next shaving soap offering will have a light tobacco scent, and we are already working on a lime shaving soap for the spring. Other than that, we are excited about our new firm-hold moustache waxes which will be released very soon. They hold up to mask-wearing really well, so that should make moustachioed healthcare providers quite happy.

    Nil Aftershave Balm has a beautifully creamy texture.

    NG: Right on! I’m pretty excited for those firm hold waxes, anything to make my ‘stache co-operate with a face mask. Thanks for taking the time to chat with us Glenn.

    You can grab Glenn’s products here or at Kent of Inglewood in Calgary, Edmonton, and Ottawa. They’re locally-made, natural, come in recyclable packaging, and work like a dream. What’s not to love?

    Get shaving with bartigan & stark!

    Nathan Gareau
    Nathan Gareau

    A famed cocktologist and axe man, Nathan opened the first Kent of Inglewood store in Calgary, and now spends his days writing most of what you are reading here and teaching straight razor shaving classes. Ask him about his world-famous Three Cherry Manhattan. In his spare time Nathan can be found sharpening his axe, making fermented foods, or practicing his amateur butchering hobby. He doesn't slur his words, he speaks in cursive.

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