It's been a minute since our last headphone / earbud / earphone list. I think we laid down the last Top Ten Heaphones in… 2009?! darn time flies! Anywho, it's a new day, there's way more companies vying for that "best" title. We won't just straight up number them, but there are few really good ones out there that we have to highlight. Check out the summaries and product reviews of headphones below:
Soul by Ludacris SL100, $179.99
Soul by Ludacris. I can't lie, I had little expectations for the Souls… I figured Beats were the best because they seemed to be everywhere- on celebrities, in videos, movies, etc. Well, I was very pleasantly proven wrong… Souls are the best headphones on the market right now (atleast in the "Beats vs Souls" battle anyway), and anyone that tells you otherwise is just caught up in the hype.
I've been an "over the ear" headphone person for a long time now. I haven't used an "on the ear" headphone/earphone set since I was in 7th grade listening to my bright yellow sony sports cd player on the school bus. So when I got the on-the-ear Souls (SL100), I was ready to send them back… I knew I wasn't going to like them. But then I nonchalantly put them on while listening to my ipod on shuffle, and I was blown away. So freaking clear, ridiculously clear. I could hear every instrument used to create the beats and melodies… and the sound was perfect. Several comfortable hours later, I could straight up say I experienced music in a new way. That's some cliche' ass sh*t to say, lol, but it's true. Beats by Dre give you bass, but if you want to hear your music, like feel as if you're apart of the track you're listening too, then Soul by Ludacris is the only way to go. The name is so appropriate. Get a pair of Souls, here.
Urbanears Plattan, $59.99
Urbanears. I've been admiring Urbanears for years now. The simple monochramtic, modern yet vintage style speaks to me. These probably have to be some of the most stylish headphones on the mass market, if not the most stylish. They're just so classic, I can't see these not being hot.
I don't know if people usually own more than one pair of headphones, but the Urbanears Plattan would make as the perfect "second" pair if you have an expensive first pair. I could imagine leaving these at the office or around the house, or they could even be reserved just for travel if you don't want to risk loosing your $300 pair. You can buy a pair, here.
NuForce-NE700X. Battle of the Buds is what I like to call it, lol. Earbuds come with pretty much all electronics these days, namely phones and mp3 players. So we all know how uncomfortable they can be. Most pairs are sufficient and can do their job, but I've been searching for a pair that are notches above the rest in comfort and sound. I haven't tried them all, but NuForce makes a nice pair. Check them out, here.
V-Moda Vibrato. We've always been fans of V-Moda, especially since they decided early on in the process to not only make their headphones forward thinking in technology, but also in design and style. So with all that good stuff said, the V-moda Vibratos are just as sleek and stylish as the crossfades. Get a pair, here.
Custom pair of Fanny Wang 3000, $349.95
Fanny Wang. Funny name, but these are in line to compete with Souls, Beats, and the other heavy hitters. The Fanny Wang 3000s are their top of the line pair, featuring a switch to go from regular mode, to ANC (Active Noise Canceling), to Bass Boost (which gives you bass that is stronger than Beats by Dre, depending on who you talk to). Besides the awesome ability to change how you hear the music, another main difference, or bonus rather, with Fanny Wangs is the customizability of them. They have a solid collection of colors that you can use to customize just about every part of your headphone– inside/outside band, ear muffs, center disc, sound chamber, even the cord. You can order your first custom pair, here.
I'm not a hardcore audiophile (a person with a strong interest in high-quality sound (usually music) reproduction), but I do love to hear my music the best way possible. These five (2 on the ear, 1 over the ear, and 2 earbuds) definitely are some of the best on the market. Feel free to comment on your favorite headphone/earbuds below.
You know how we love to have the "fun giveaways" on Fridays… So today, we have cellphones. I know you're probably like, "where does this stop… you guys have EVERYTHING, this is amaaaazing!" Lol, well, thank you, you're amazing too, and it does not stop for now. And today, yes, we're actually giving away phones courtesy of Pantech and AT&T.
Urban Gent Review: The Pantech Laser is one of AT&T's newest additions to their lineup — and a quite nice one I may add. The Pantech Laser is indeed touch screen, has the thinnest sliding keyboard on the market (less than 1 inch), and has a display that it quite simply gorgeous – the screen is crystal clear, so everything looks great and is easy to read. The phone's interface is swift and offers alot of customizations/personalization options (I like the classic animated clock). And of course the new Pantech Laser has a music player, camera, video camera, and turn by turn GPS. If you're on the market for a new phone, this just might be the one for you. Watch a demo here and read more details about the key features below:
- Fast 3G connectivity via AT&T's HSDPA/UMTS network (850/1900 MHz bands; 3.6/7.2 Mbps speeds with network availability).
- GPS navigation capabilities via optional AT&T Navigator service includes audible turn-by-turn directions, real-time traffic updates, and re-routing options.
- Quick Access to social networking sites including AT&T Social Net, Facebook and more
- 3.1-inch touchscreen AMOLED display (480 x 800 pixels, 262K color depth)
- Customizable Menu screens and widgets with three screen menu tabs for contacts, messaging, and favorites.
- Slide-out full QWERTY keyboard
- 3-megapixel camera/camcorder with up to 8x digital zoom
- Multi-format music player compatible with MP3, WMA, and AAC/AAC+ formats
- Bluetooth connectivity includes profiles for communication headset, hands-free car kits, and the A2DP Bluetooth profile–enabling you to wirelessly stream your music to a pair of compatible Bluetooth stereo headphones or speaker dock.
- Memory expansion via microSD card slot with support for optional cards up to 32 GB.
- 150 MB internal memory storage
- Full messaging capabilities including SMS text, MMS picture/video, Mobile E-Mail, and IM instant messaging (via popular services including AOL, Yahoo!, Windows Live Messenger, and Google Talk)
- Web browser
- Organizer tools including calendar, alarm clock, and more
- Airplane mode allows you to listen to music while the cellular connectivity is turned off.
Originally $399.99, but now down to $149.99 or $99.99 (w/ contract).
You can purchase the Pantech Laser here, for $99.99 (w/ contract).
We'll be giving away two today (and one next week). Matter of fact, this is probably a good time to tell you that next week we're going to have a mega huge Urban Gentleman Holiday Giveaway, where there will be one grand prize winner that will receive a combination of just about all the other giveaways. We'll go into more details later, but go ahead and tell everyone you know so y'all can prepare to go ham on our Facebook, Twitter, and blog next week.
2 readers will be chosen today. To win you must comment on this post, comment on our Facebook, and/or re-tweet on Twitter. Link to us on your Facebook/Twitter pages, tell all your friends and associates, and tweet/facebook like crazy… These are $400 phones, that you can have for the freeskie, so ready-set-getterdone!
Twinluxe is a line of fine grooming products for the modern man. TwinLuxe's 'Shaving Skincare' line consists of multi-functional formulations with a 'TwinLuxe Blend' core of soothing Asian botanicals, such as Hydrolyzed Rice Protein and Centella Asiatica Extract, scientifically-proven to help strengthen skin tone, improve skin smoothness, and promote anti-aging properties.
Renewing Face Wash & Scrub: The unique formula combines two professional treatments in one "every day product". Gentle microbeads in the softening formula exfoliate the skin, smoothing away roughness and prevent ingrown hair. Unclogged, exfoliated skin is the key to a close shave. The integrated nourishing cleanser unclogs pores, removes dirt and excess oil to promote glowing, fresh skin. The Renewing Face Wash & Scrub is a 2 in 1 essential for everyday use and for pre-shave preparation. For all skin types.
Urban Gent Review: It has a soothing eucalyptus mint smell and exfoliating beads.The Renewing Face Wash & Scrub is able to take off dead layer of my skin without irritation. I've used several exfoliaters in the past and many irritate my skin, this one does not.
Booster Serum: Customize shaving results – this intensive power serum revolutionizes any shaving experience. Pre-shave, apply to create an additional protective barrier between your skin and your blade. Post-shave, soothe any problem spots on your skin to help boost skin's ability to renew and fight irritation. Anytime, apply to problem spots on skin to help revive your complexion.
For all skin types.
Urban Gent Review: Using it pre and/or post shave, the Booster Serum has helped reduce my razor bumps.
Soothing Face Balm: This intensive, non-oily balm infuses just-shaved skin with a soothing botanical blend to hydrate and nourish without clogging pores. This long-lasting and gentle moisturizer is a refreshing boost to battle the look of fine lines and inflammation, while restoring healthy, glowing skin. After spritzing Instant Energy Mist onto skin, apply a pea-sized amount for entire face and neck. Repeat if needed. For all skin types – even the most sensitive.
Urban Gent Review: I mainly like the Soothing Face Balm because it's not greasy or oily, and it goes right into the skin. This is hands down one of the best moisturizers I've used because you can use a little and it goes a long way. My only complaint is the mild plastic smell, it's unappealing, but it doesn't linger so I suppose it's okay. But besides that the product works great.
Daily Detox Face Wash & Mask: This miracle 2 in 1 daily deep pore cleansing treatment can be used as a bacteria-fighting facial wash, or as a detoxifying, pore cleansing mask to balance skin before shaving. To use as a mask, use a generous amount and leave on face for a few minutes before washing off. This one step multi-tasking formula provides the benefits of a professional deep cleansing treatment, while nourishing and soothing the skin as an essential daily face wash or prior day night time pre-shave preparation.
For all skin types.
Urban Gent Review: The Daily Detox Face Wash & Mask is light (not thick) and has a nice eucalyptus mint smell. It does a good job cleaning my skin without overdrying it. After I finish using it my face definitely feels rejuvenated.
Others to try: Instant Energy Mist, Smooth Shave Creme, Instant Rescue Gel
Learn more about the complete line of TwinLuxe, here.
Purchase Twinluxe products, here.
H.I.M-istry grooming products were created by Darnell Love Henderson in 2004. Throughout life he faced skin care needs that he felt were being ignored by many companies. So he derived a line of products that would focus on the basic needs in men's skincare and would provide professional quality skincare products to men of all skin types and racial backgrounds.
H.I.M-istry, which stands for "Healthy Image Man", tackles many distinct needs like skin discoloration, ingrown facial hairs, anti aging, and more.
We were able to review a few of the products…
Blackberry Salicylic Cleanser: This cleansing gel provides an exhilarating, berry-clean freshness to help produce fresh looking clear complexion. An advanced deep pore resurfacing action increases cell turnover and help diminish the appearance of razor bump, acne break-outs and other negative affects on the skin. Ideal for normal/oily skin types.
Urban Gent Review: Smells great… like blackberries. Leaves my skin feeling cleansed and fresh.
Black Tea Bamboo Scrub: A mix of a Micro dermabrasion and light moisturizing cream. The effects of this scrubs natural ingredients provides a boost in skin cell shedding by manual exfoliation to give an all over healthy tone. The natural fruit ingredients causes mild skin peeling and are used on the face and body to treat acne, smooth the surface of the skin and diminish superficial signs of aging and negative effects on the skin (peels off dead skin).
Urban Gent Review: This product works well and definitely gives the skin a scrubbing. The scrubbing crystals are a little harsh, but no different from most scrubs.
OC-10 Serum: A lightweight serum that protects and revitalizes the skin with CoQ10 and Vitamin E to regenerate and defend the cellular matrix form environmental stress and premature aging.
Urban Gent Review: Feels sort of like a light-lotion. And very lightly moisturizes the skin, I still opt to use another moisturizer after/with this one.
AHA Clearing Pads: Deep strength exfoliator with combination of Alpha Hydroxy Glycolic, Lactic and Pyruvic Acids with Kojic, Bearberry and Licorice to exfoliate, inhibit skin discoloration, razor bumps. Use 2 to 3 times per week before bed.
Alpha Premier Fragrance: (Our Review): A nice everyday cologne. The woody scent makes it a perfect winter fragrance to try, purchase, here.
Purchase the above products, HERE.
OVERALL REVIEW: A good line of products that are scientifically created for every type of guy, with men of color in mind– so the product line gets a few extra points off back. It's very important to use these products in the proper order. I was initially using the scrub, then cleanser, then serum and I found my skin very lightly peeling in the middle of the day. But once I changed to cleanser, then scrub, then serum this went away. If you're in need of new products, then I'd give HIMistry a try.
Random Fact: HIMistry caught the attention of higher US officials (US government)– in a good way. The H.I.M.-istry (Healthy Image Man) line, including cleansers, toners, and scrubs, will be in 150 Army and Air Force Exchange Service stores across the country…. pretty cool. I guess that's what happens when you are able to specifically create products that are meant for a range of ethnicity groups.
More from Himistry:
More and more men are looking for skin care products that cater to their needs. Men have thicker skin which tends to be oily and show signs of aging as testosterone levels decrease. Factors such as sun damage, lifestyle choices and nutrition play a significant role in skin condition. H.I.M-istry offers natural based Facial Care products formulated with cutting edge ingredients that moisturize, purify, repair and fight visible signs of aging and negative effect of the skin .
A man's skin is approximately 15% thicker than a woman's. Active sebaceous glands cause men's skin to be oilier with larger pores and a richer blood supply. Regular deep cleansing is a necessity to maintain a healthy complexion. Men’s skin is also more prone to be dehydrated due to daily or frequent shaving. No matter your skin type, it is important to maintain a regular skin care regimen to keep pores clear, and healthy looking.
We've mentioned MenScience several times in the past, but since our last mention they've gone and improved upon a few of the products–mainly the award winning Microfine Face Scrub.
Here's the technical details:
The new Microfine Face Scrub formula contains a higher concentration of emollients like allantoin and natural botanicals like aloe to make it even gentler on the skin, as well as more moisturizing. The formula is now free of paraben-based preservatives, and features an improved consistency that makes the scrub smoother and easier to apply to the face. It still features the award-winning combination of 5% glycolic acid, 1% salicylic acid, and three types of microfine exfoliating particles to loosen dirt, oil and dead skin cells from the skin’s surface. The combined action of these ingredients promotes cellular turnover and preps skin for a closer, smoother shave without the risk of ingrown.
Urban Gent Review: Though the smell could be more inviting, I can definitely see why it's a best seller. The finer exfoliating particles make for a much better, gentler, nicer feeling scrub. I hate when products have those huge sugar scrub particles that seem to be scratching your face. Most importantly, it doesn't dry my skin, and it leaves it feeling pretty soft.
Purchase MenScience Microfine Face Scrub, here.
Other MenScience products to try: Advanced Body Scrub and Advanced Shave Formula, here.
This week we're going to mainly focus on grooming. We'll be reviewing 1-2 products per day starting with the more attainable brands to the luxury brands. We'll also try to review a few colognes as well (though they may have to wait until next week). So be sure to be ready with your opinions on the products we cover. (3 Urban Gent with similar skintypes have reviewed the products).
Axe Music is from Axe's latest line-up of products. We've reviewed much of their stuff in the past and as everyone can tell each set has a different theme… this time Music, particularly Rock Music.
Urban Gent Review: The main thing that changes in different AXE collections is the fragrance which is inspired by the theme. In AXE Music you'll smell scents of leather and wood, two typical rocker scents (atleast the leather is). If you're an avid AXE product user, it doesn't hurt to try out their new deodorant bodyspray and revitalizing shower gel. You can get the Axe Music Line, here.
Neutrogena has a men's skincare line, and recently they've released a sensitive skincare line that has "Pro-soothe Technology". Pro-Soothe technology is a unique combination of naturally derived ingredients, soothes, heals, and moisturizes dry, sensitive skin.
3 Main products in this line:
Shave Creme: Helps prevent irritation as a result of shaving
Oil-Free Moisture: Oil free non-greasy formula protects and heals with SPF 30.
Post Shave Balm: Heals and protects sensitive skin
Urban Gent Review: Neutrogena is a trusted brand anyway, so its no surprise that the products works pretty good. The soothing and calming, and the products "healing powers" are pretty much felt. If you have sensitive skin and are on the market for a new line of shaving products, it's worth giving Neutrogena Sensitive Skin a whirl. Also, If you are one of those guys that just uses plain soap to shave (I know there's some of you out there) then this is a nice product to start with (they also have a line for regular skin). You can get the Neutrogena for Men, here.