La Compagnie De Provence
3870 Fifth Avenue, Hillcrest
With the advent of matrimony, a man ceases to be merely the object of his beloved's affection; to this pleasant relation comes the added status of being an object of her proprietary interest. When this happens, a man may find himself forced to reassess what is at the heart of his masculinity -- what things he may not surrender and still remain himself -- and what are merely the trappings of a bachelor who doesn't feel the need to fuss over seeming trivialities, such as a facial soap that doesn't strip his skin like sandpaper. When our hero submits to caring for the face that his beloved beholds each morning, he may pay a visit to La Compagnie de Provence and surrender his visage to the gentle care of such soaps as mild milk, lettuce (for oily skin), luxurious 20 percent Shea butter, honey, vanilla, orange, olive, lilac with almond base, sage, coconut, tangerine, and even sea algae, among others. Though full of soaps, gels, conditioners, fragrances, and the like, the place does not feel frilly; the bold Provençal colors -- noticeable on various bolts of fabric (also for sale) -- give the place a vibrancy, a beauty not exclusively feminine.