The Fit for Vikings Range can be found here
When I get asked if I’d like to sample and road test some products I assume I will get sent a small sample of the range. This is often the case and I am of course eternally grateful, but every now and then I get sent a package that takes me by surprise. Just a quick look at the photos will show you I have been absolutely spoiled this time round with the Fit For Vikings products with the full compliment of scent blends in beard oil and beard balms. They were well protected during their transit across the waves to the UK from their homeland of Iceland, hence the Viking link. I simply love the design work with the logo and branding, each scent has a different colour and a really nice card that tells you a little about the blend and the history behind its name, I’ll cover the scents at the end but there is a type of scent for everyone I’m sure. It was also nice to see that each product has a use by date and batch number. Vikings do seem to be a bit of a fantasy theme for the bearded chap and many guys out there like to feel at least part Viking in their appearance in some way yearning for a life free of modern trappings. Even if you aren’t a Viking it seems admirable to want their virtues of honour, love and loyalty. Plus they had big swords and that is very cool is it not? The man behind the brand is a true Viking, the company offering handmade beard care Fit for Vikings, made in Norway by an Icelandic Viking. Its fair to say that maybe our depiction of the bearded Viking may just be a dramatic portayal, were they bearded savages or was there more to them? One thing I can say is that if the Fit for Vikings products were available to Ragnar and his men then perhaps they would not have needed aggression, a simple stroke of their beautiful beard would be enough to win over the enemy and I’ll tell you why…
Ingredients – Beeswax, Shea butter, Mango butter, Cocoa butter, Jojoba oil, Argan oil, Sweet Almond oil, Hazelnut oil, Coconut oil, Vitamin E
The balm is a very light colour, just off white and nice and firm, the extraction from the tin is a pleasant experience being a simple thumbnail push. The balm melts down very quickly and in a very impressive manner producing a delightfully thick and oily beard enhancing slick. One thing that is quite a surprise is that the amount of balm you actually need is way less than you think you need as the resultant oiliness spreads a long way through your facial hair. In application the balm transfers effortlessly with no drag felt at all, and in stroking it into your facial hair everything pops into place giving a very pleasing healthy looking and pulled together styling. The residue left behind on my palms was transferred into my head hair so no issue there. My curly tangle of hairs seemed to be calmed slightly and this meant that brushing and combing were much easier, my beard was definitely easier to manage and the bonus was it looked great too. I know we shouldn’t be playing with our face in public but the feel of my beard was so pleasing that I found myself constantly stroking my lovely soft chin, don’t judge me I simply could not help it! I apply my balm in the morning as a rule and its effective well into the day, even as I return home from work I could feel the goodness still. I also noted that my beard felt thicker too, not that its needed but if you are in need of a plump up then the Fit for Vikings balm might be just what you need. I got a number of great compliments on the appearance of my beard, that it was fluffier, bigger, shinier etc and more importantly my family love the smell of it, whatever scent I’m wearing. The wax element is certainly noticeable but in a positive light as the look and feel is natural rather than clunky and heavy. I really enjoy wearing this balm it does enough to support my beard and moustache style and there is a definite nourishing feel to using it.
Ingredients – Jojoba oil, Argan oil, Sweet Almond oil, Hazelnut oil, Coconut oil, Vitamin E.
The oil is dispensed from the amber bottle with a handy pipette, this means nicely controlled droplets onto the desired area of my finger tips to prevent over application. Its a light colour and feels very nice, silky and light to medium in consistency and it gets onto the hair and skin very easily. The skin feel is very noticeable initially, its quite soothing and the hair feel is soft and silky . I used the oil as a top up to the balm of an evening matching the scents of the day and it was nice to get another hit of the well put together scent blend. The oil when used as a standalone worked well and my beard and moustache felt pretty good but after a few hours I found that the feel was a little less obvious, but that is the nature of my beard, it is a thirsty beast and oils don’t last very long as a rule.
I have to start this part of the review with a bit of a confession, my grasp of the Icelandic language means that if I try to pronounce the names of the blends in my head or even worse out loud it sounds like I’m either possessed by a drunk demon or a Welsh radio drama where the signal is intermittent. So that in mind I found myself referring to them by colour, my inner monologue sounded like “ooh I fancy the blue one today” as opposed to “hanadashnoonjuker or halormystardascoogar.” That’s enough of that though as we have the serious business of reviewing to get on with. The names might be tough but the scents are a joy, every one of them in fact as they are well balanced and the aroma lasts throughout the day. I shall paraphrase the info card for each scent and supplement that with my experiences.
Halendid- This is the bare product so no scent and is cleverly named after the Icelandic barren highlands where nothing grows, just a slightly nutty smell on this, ideal if you don’t like to smell your product all day.
BardarBunga- This scent is named after the Volcano that erupted in 2014, it is made up of aniseed, black pepper, sweet orange and clove. The initial thump comes in the form of liquorice and a warmth from the pepper then finished with sweetness from the orange. Its a really nice scent this one, reminds me a little of mulled wine actually just not boozy.
Eyjafjallajokull- named after the Glacier that one of your friends is proud of being able to perfectly pronounce its labelled as Christmas in a bottle. The main note in this is cinnamon , then you get orange with a nice undercurrent of spruce that lingers. Its a very warm and comforting scent, well balanced and intricate. It reminds me of a Christmas scented candle but not over the top or too sickly, just authentic and lovely.
Herdubreid- this was the first one I tried as the smell perfectly fitted my mood, its named after a mountain and takes inspiration from the winds that blow there. The aroma is minty but its a mellow spearmint laced with sweet woody notes from the rosewood and frankincense which I found to be very invigorating and ideal for a wake up in the morning.
Jokulsarlon- translated to “glacial river lagoon” the scent is a blast of freshness, an excellent positive aroma that I would describe as a lemon sorbet with an ever so slight spicyness from the frankincense. Its very subtle and changes throughout the day becoming a bit less lemongrass and a touch more cedarwood into the afternoon. I love this one and have found myself going back to it on numerous occasions.
Aurora Borealis- No card for this one as I believe the scent is no longer available, which is a shame as I really enjoyed this one which surprised me as its incredibly floral. Is heady and almost like the smell of lilies initially but sandalwood does just enough to balance the Ylang Ylang, jasmine and rose. The result is a very chilled out relaxing aroma that on paper might be everyone’s ideal choice but I was really surprised how this made me feel.
Hvannadalshnjukur- Gets its name from the highest place in Iceland and consists of ylang ylang, sandalwood sweet orange and lemongrass. Ylang ylang plays very well with the citrus elements her, its hard to describe this one but think along the lines of a fruit cocktail and you’ll be close to it.
Hallormsstadaskogur- a lovely woodland tea tree aroma here, highly cleansing and invigorating to wear. The name is from the largest forest in Iceland and the aroma certainly lives up to its name, big bold and woody from the combination of tea tree, cedarwood and sandalwood. Its a beauty!
So that’s the scent line up and I’m quite exhausted I must confess. Its easy to see that there are certain oils that feature here and I liken this to an artist who works from a set palette showing skill in balancing different elements to create something new and inspiring!
One Viking on his own is a formidable thing, however pair him up with another with different qualities and you’ve got something special on your hands. That’s what we have here, two distinctly good beard products that on their own work admirably but its when they are used together I felt the biggest impact and benefit. If I had to pick oil or balm it would be balm for me, there is something about the way it makes my beard feel that is really positive for me. I’m not saying I don’t like the oil, just that oils don’t really do much for me in general, I need the balmy goodness. I recommend you checkout the the Fit for Vikings website, they have the addition of a moustache wax since I started the trial, and I have it on good authority that beard and body soap made from beer will feature soon too, so it seems they have the bearded man’s needs covered. In visiting the website you will not only have some great products you will have an experience, learn a little and feel part of something bigger. Whatever products you choose I am confident you will find them very pleasing indeed and if like me you now want to visit Iceland I’m sure you will get a warm Viking welcome.