Brand Profile: Baxter of California

One of the first men's grooming brands still gets it right today. Photo courtesy of Baxter of California.
One of the first men’s grooming brands still gets it right today. Photo courtesy of Baxter of California.

Here on The Style Guide, grooming has been a topic that’s been a focus occasionally, but not for the most part. Like other style upgrades though, the grooming game is one where guys can begin to set themselves apart – much like upgrading your home accessories or interior design. And in a similar fashion, smaller efforts go a long way toward a better overall picture (and appearance), and can really add up to a much better lifestyle all around. Again, it’s still grooming we’re talking about here. While upstarts like Brickell Men’s Products are absolutely getting it right on the newer end of the men’s grooming craze, there are some established brands that continue to deliver on product that really just works.

An inside look at one of the brand's most comprehensive kits -- the Best of Baxter box. Photo courtesy of Baxter of California.
An inside look at one of the brand’s most comprehensive kits — the Best of Baxter box. Photo courtesy of Baxter of California.

Baxter of California is one such brand that’s been at it for decades, revolutionizing its products over the years and really dialing in its approach. The brand’s roots are distinctly West Coast, right down to where they were founded five decades ago (its Super Skin Conditioner was specifically designed for protection from sea and salt air). The designs on the bottles and the packaging even now are clean and crisp, the fonts and colors stick to blue, black and white (a classic menswear combo if ever there was one), and the product – most importantly – delivers, too. If you’re looking for a place to start exploring an improved grooming regimen, Baxter is as good a place to start as any.

They’ve nailed it down to essential areas like Hair, Skin and Body Care products, although they also offer deodorant and candles, too. Plus, packages that combine the highlights into one are available for purchase – crucially, the Best of Baxter package boils things down into one essential set, as does the Travel Kit (soon to be restocked, I’m told, and which you can get a small look at below).

Just part of the spread from the Baxter Travel Kit -- a worthy pickup when it goes back in-stock.
Just part of the spread from the Baxter Travel Kit — a worthy pickup when it goes back in-stock.

Having got my hands on a sample of the Travel Kit in advance of a trip to Greece, I’m here to tell you it’s worth the investment for any trips you might take. For someone who hadn’t truly paid attention to many grooming products before this year, that’s a first. I had previously bought the Under Eye Complex from the brand, and while it initially struck me as a somewhat odd product to use, it definitely does its job well.

Prepped to travel with key essentials from Baxter. Notebook by Field Notes. Keychain by Apolis.
Prepped to travel with key essentials from Baxter. Notebook by Field Notes. Tan leather keychain by Apolis. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

So that’s a worthy pickup (if $28 at first seems like too much for a small tube of cream, rest assured that it does last through multiple months of daily use, at the least). The Travel Kit expands on that value-for-size philosophy and rounds things up nicely into a getaway-ready package (much like other stylish travel accessories worth your time).

The kit contains everything you could ever need for hitting the road, including the brand’s Daily Protein Shampoo and Daily Face Wash, After Shave Balm and Oil-Free Moisturizer. I’ll admit I’m not much in the way of shaving my beard, but when the time comes, the Super Shave Balm (also contained therein) should do the job nicely.
Ernest Alexander
Much like Brickell Men’s Products, Kiehl’s, Jack Black or other grooming brands with an all-around focus, Baxter has a clear vision when it comes to product design, packaging and functionality. These are items that get the job done and do so in a way that’s not incredibly expensive. In fact, it’s fairly approachable. If ponying up for grooming products stretches the budget thin, simpler alternatives will likely do the job. But upgrading to an established name can absolutely yield quality that’s worth a slight investment – and a better appearance at the end (or the start) of the day.

Do you have a go-to grooming company or product? Have you ever tried out Baxter of California?

Ben Sherman US

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