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Contrary to popular belief, hipsters do not have a monopoly on beards. In spite of their well-intentioned efforts to craft an edgy look, they don’t have a patch on London’s Sikh community.

Photographed by Amit and Naroop, The Singh Project features 35 portraits of Sikh men and their mighty beards. “Many religions determine the way their followers look, but none have such a dramatic and definite ‘look’ as Sikhism,” say the duo of the defining characteristic.  “And yet, with 30 million Sikhs in the World, there are almost as many ways to wear the turban and beard as there are Sikhs.” As such, they have photographed Britain’s Sikh doctors, boxers, temple volunteers, IT professionals and, er, magicians – all of them sporting an impressive barb and carrying the name Singh (Sanskrit for lion), which is given to all baptised male Sikhs.

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At twenty six Tom Daxon’s youthful appearance belies the maturity of his eponymous line of niche fragrances. The eight-strong collection of eau de parfums are, well, very grown up. They are the work of someone who understands the art of subtlety and suggestion, the very things that come with experience and, frankly, age.

But perhaps Daxon’s innate ability shouldn’t be so surprising. The guy is from good stock, after all. His mother was the Creative Director for Molton Brown (in its hey day, I hasten to add) before moving on to Mary Quant Cosmetics, a career that also served as a Tom’s initiation into the industry.

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The transition from software to skincare is not an obvious one. But for Toronto-based entrepreneur Brandon Truaxe there’s no such thing as a linear progression. By the time he was twenty-one he had sold his first company, a wildly successful software development venture (whose creations included an automotive-financing portal), and ploughed the profit into a skincare brand. In fact, it was his schooling in software that furnished him with a unique approach to skincare.

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Matthew Malin and Andrew Goetz are the founders of Malin+Goetz, a modern apothecary specializing in performance-driven skin care formulated with natural ingredients.

Andrew, a former marketing director for Vitra — the famed Swiss manufacturer of designer furniture — and Matthew, who nurtured the growth of beauty brands including Kiehl’s and Helmut Lang perfumes, fused their talents in the early noughties.

They launched their first store in New York’s Chelsea in 2004 and, since then, Malin+Goetz products have swiftly found their way into design-conscious retailers in the United Kingdom, South America, Asia and Australia. Their third store in New York City recently opened on Madison and 90th Street. We rummaged around their bathroom cabinets for their top three grooming essentials.

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J.P. Mastey’s relationship with Baxter goes back to his childhood. Growing up in Los Angeles, his father’s company was located in the same building as the brand that would later become his own. As a kid J.P. would hang out in the Baxter offices, play with Baxter Finley’s dog and toy with  the lotions  that made the brand a household name back in the late 60s. When Baxter Finley was finally ready to pass the baton, he knew exactly who to call/.

Mastey took Baxter of California from strength to strength in a matter of years, tuning it from an outdated family business into a design-savvy company responsible for ‘tapping influencers’ and selling to the ‘cool kids’ (that would be us, natch). The current line includes everything from cleansing bars to safety razors, skin and body care products.

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A good facial is as much about the practitioner as it is about the products. Which is precisely why some of the best celebrity estheticians often become as well known as their clients.

Skin specialist Sherron Holder-Culver is the go-to woman for a bespoke facial, if only because she’s had first hand experience of the limitations involved in giving treatments ‘by numbers’. “Some spa facials have a strict protocol that they drum into therapists, not to mention a set amount of products they can use,” she says. “I like to combine products with various massage techniques and equipment – whatever will get the best results for that particular client.”

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In many ways we long for the carefree days of ‘Wash & Go’ (well, maybe not…). Haircare was simpler back then. Mostly because the Leonor Greyl Microviewer wasn’t around to put the fear of God in us.

The machine, created by one of Paris’ pioneers in haircare, magnifies the scalp by 200%, allowing your stylist (in our case, world-famous Johnnie Sapong – the man responsible for the likes of Jude Law, Daniel Craig and Johnny Depp) to asses your hair condition offer a bespoke solution for your barnet.

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For the uninitiated, Jean-Claude Ellena is to fragrance what Mozart is to music.  His back catalogue spans some three and a half decades and includes signature scents for Bulgari, Van Cleef & Arpels , L’Artisan Parfumeur and many others. Most guys with a passing interest in fragrance will probably know his work in the form of  the phenomenally successful Terre D’Hermès but, should you want to find out more about the man himself, check out  this feature by Hannah Betts for The Times.

Currently the inhouse perfumer for luxury lifestyle brand Hermès, he talks exclusively to The Exfoliator at the launch of his new Hermessence fragrance, Iris Ukiyoé. Read the entire interview- including the odd bit of Franglais –  after the jump…

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