The story of Bay Rum begins with the essential oil derived from the leaves of the bay tree growing in the Virgin Islands, Cuba, Dominica and other islands of the Caribbean. The oil, along with its aroma, is extracted from the crushed leaves by a process of distillation, boiling the leaves under pressure, then allowing the sediment to settle, leaving a pure, fragrant oil that becomes the most important ingredient in what we call Bay Rum today. Early “recipes” were born out of need. The rewards were many to those who used Bay Rum:
- The fragrance was an effective “mask” from the odors resulting from island humidity and heat, and shipboard scarcity of fresh water. Island living, even to this day, is not complete without the use of Bay Rum.
- Worldwide, in the past century, every barbershop, department store and pharmacy carried this product. During the past half-century, some of the “glamour” of Bay Rum has been lost to the mass marketing of other products.
- Today the oil is often used externally in aromatherapy, and for medicinal means in cooling body temperature, treating chills, and relieving body aches. As an astringent, nothing is better at relieving the annoyance of small scratches and insect bites. And this oil is widely used in the manufacture of soaps, candles, and colognes.
- The most widely known use of Bay Rum has been as an aftershave product – a fresh aroma without the heavy perfumes used in many of today’s products.
Despite Bay Rum’s exotic origins, our Turtle Bay after shave, fragrance, and shave creams are made right here in the United States. We are confident that trying our Premium Bay Rum products will not only convert your senses to enjoying a more “masculine” scent, but appreciating the history of a product once produced in primitive Bay Rum stills by island-born entrepreneurs before electricity or running.
Want to learn even more about the history of Bay Rum? Visit our friends at http://www.stjohnhistoricalsociety.org/