We're looking for a sophisticated upscale look. Feel free to use all uppercase letters if that looks better. We don't want a literal "chisel" tool in the image, we're looking to evoke feelings of art, sophistication, and masculinity. Similar to Michaelangelo's quote: "Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it." In the same way, every man has a gentleman inside him, waiting to be discovered.
We want to avoid a retro, old time look that is associated with old barbershops. We're pitching a shave that is part of an multi-generation tradition, but not old, stodgy or outdated. The fashion brand Diesel (diesel.com) has a look that we like.
We're interested in experimenting with combination marks with a logotype & icon. However both logotype & icon should have the potential to be standalone, so that we can use them individually or combined.
We like the idea of using an animal for the icon. Examples are Lacoste's Alligator, Polo's Man Riding a Horse, Abercrombie & Fitches' Moose, American Eagle's Eagle. Etc. We've included some reference images to look at.
We do not want any non-abstracted shaving equipment used as the icon, such as razors, brushes, bowls, etc. This approach is a little too direct for our tastes.
*UPDATE: If our brand were to match the style of a male celebrity, we'd be looking at people like: Idris Elba, George Clooney, Pierce Brosnan, Robert Downey Jr., Mark Harmon.
These are sophisticated modern gentlemen who have a mature and distinguished look without looking "old."
**Update 2: Please no designs with angry animals with open mouths. The look is a little too aggressive, outdoorsy, rugged, hunting for our tastes.