Duross & Langel is a small company based in Philadelphia, where it sells handmade soaps, body products, and haircare in a loft-like shop near the center of the city. When I was living in Philadelphia a few years ago, I made regular trips to Duross & Langel, and I still stop by whenever I’m in town, to stock up on one or two of my favorite products.
For some reason, I’m on the prowl for a good body scrub these days — it must have something to do with the transition from summer to fall. Duross & Langel offers a few solutions for ridding yourself of dry or flaky skin, and many of them happen to be nicely scented.
Some of the company's hand-crafted soaps, for example, have exfoliating properties. There’s Blueberry Scrub, which is flecked with actual blueberry seeds and smells like the filling of a blueberry pie; Steve’s Seed Scrub, with a fennel scent and poppy seeds swirled into its base of olive oil and shea butter; and Coffee Mint, whose peppermint fragrance will wake you up if its gently abrasive layer of ground coffee beans doesn’t do the trick.
Sandalwood Scrub, which I like even more than the soaps, is packaged in a flip-top bottle. I can’t really think of a similar product, which is why I keep coming back to it. Rather than salt, sugar, or jojoba beads, this scrub gets its power from pulverized sandalwood and walnut shells, which are suspended in a gently foaming shower gel. The gel cleanses, and the gritty bits work to polish the skin. Although the label calls this a “face and body scrub,” I can’t really imagine using it on my face; however, for elbows, feet, and the backs of arms and legs, it’s ideal.
The use of sandalwood is reportedly a complicated issue these days, due to shortages and restrictions. I don’t know the specific source of the sandalwood used in this product, or how much of the scent is due to real sandalwood versus synthetic fragrance, but the scrub certainly smells wonderful: woody-sweet, slightly earthy, a bit astringent. It’s appropriate for either men or women, and it feels season-less — although I find it especially fitting for autumn, as I happily prepare to tuck myself into long sleeves and tights for the next few months.
If you have a favorite scrub or sandalwood product, feel free to share in the comments section!
Duross & Langel soaps sell for $7 per bar, and Sandalwood Body Scrub is available for $18 for 8 oz. at the Duross & Langel website.