Being prepared for anything is the mark of a true gentleman, and with the freezing, hellacious weather descending upon us early this year (thanks global warming). I found myself lacking the basic necessities; namely scents strong enough to hold up in these subzero temperatures this year.
Thus I did what every frag head does, asked my closest friends and posted in all the fragrance groups on facebook, sampled everything and then emptied my bank account on the best scents I could find.
One for every category that I felt a man should own, come freezing rain, falling snow and subzero temperatures. I strove to find scents that maintained a balance between classicism, refinement, and modernity.
1. The Wood.
BOND NO. 9 NEW YORK SANDALWOOD
Every man needs a good wood. New York Sandalwood, new this holiday season is very good, very, very good. I’ve searched for the perfect Sandalwood for the longest time and hadn’t found it until now. It’s modern, classic and as smooth as a Sandalwood can come.
What I smell upon first application is a blast of spices, cleaned up with a raw carrot note that keeps the opening smooth, fresh and earthy. Soon after, about thirty minutes the beauty of the Sandalwood shows up, and this is where the magic happens. Don’t trust me though, check it out for yourself. Bond Knocked it out of the proverbial park.
(As tested on a day filled with icicles.)
Sillage: One step short of being radioactive.
Notes: Earthy Carrot, Orris root, Cardamom. Sandalwood, Fig, Dry Papyrus. Honey, Amber, Oak Moss, and Musk.
Richwood by Xerjoff
Santal Noble by Maitre Parfumeur Gantier
Honor Man by Amouage
2. The Oud.
BOND NO.9 NEW YORK OUD
Every man should smell g’oud, and this one is the best way to do it. My very favorite oud and favorite of the entire Bond line. New York Oud opens up with a tart citrus and sweet berry note that just drives my nose crazy. In a good way. The first time I wore it I got five compliments in the first couple of hours, but that was probably due to the five sprays on my shirt in an office setting. It’s potent stuff. Some ouds can be to classic and refined for my taste, but not this one. Bond claims there’s rose in here, but I can’t discern it. It’s the perfect modern oud for a younger gentleman.
Longevity: Until your next shower.
Drydown. So g’oud, I’m wearing it now.
Notes: Red Plum, Saffron, Orange. Red Rose, Orris Root, Oud and Patchouli. White Honey, Musk, and Vetiver.
Amber Aoud by Roja Dove.
Royal Oud by Creed.
Agarwood by Heeley.
3. The Incense.
BLACK GEMSTONE BY STEPHANIE HUMBERT LUCAS 777
I love the smell of incense and so when my fellow scent enthusiast Trésor Prijs referee me to Black Gemstone, saying I just had to try this one, I immediately sought out a sample. And I’m glad I did.
It’s sweet, medicinal and heavy, just how I like my incense. It’s one of the most intriguing fragrances I’ve had the fortune of trying recently, and a tiny bit avant garde for a gentleman, but completely worthy of a number one spot on your fragrance shelf if you’ve already become enamored with the other king of incense, Interlude man. Try it out. You won’t be disappointed.
Longevity: Days and days.
Drydown: Pure, sweet, heavy and dark throughout. Becomes a skin scent after a decade or so.
Notes: A trio of Cedar, Lemon, Myrrh, Tar, Incense, Teak Wood and Tonka.
Interlude Man by Amouage.
Incense Rose by Andy Tauer.
Boise De Incens by Armani Prive.
4. The Gourmand.
MAMLUK BY XERJOFF
Caramel, beehives, and animalic oud. Mamluk is one of those scents that takes my breath away- literally, so don’t apply too much. With a light handed application however it becomes a truly unique and formidably engaging, intoxicating gourmand that will stand up to any snow flurries you can throw at it. It’s an absolute stand out fragrance.
Drydown: A siren song of sweet, manly goodness.
Notes: Italian Bergamot, Honey, caramel accord. Jasmine, Grandiflorum, Osmanthus. Benzoin, Vanilla, Oud, Musk, and Amber.
Tonka Imperial by Guerlain.
Blamage by Nasomatto.
Apple Brandy by Killian.
5. The Aromatic.
When I wanted to find the perfect gentleman’s aromatic I searched high and low, not wanting to fall back on my old bottle of beauty Aventus and it’s smokey, pineapple goodness, I instead turned to The Scent of Peace for Him by Bond No.9 a new favorite of mine, and a scent of great reviews but it was just took much like Aventus. So I kept looking until I was turned on to Ormonde Man by another friend of mine Jon Z. Wow. I understand refinement, and civility now. This is the perfect scent for the office if you don’t want to blast people and not bore yourself. Like a walk in a pine forest, fresh, uplifting, refined and absolutely fantastic. Check it out.
Jon says, “Worm by gentleman during the day, and Casanova by night.”
And I agree.
Longevity: Above Average.
Notes: Bergamot, Juniper, Pink Pepper, Coriander, Cardamom. Oud, Hemlock. Vetiver, cedar, Sandalwood, and Musk.
Vetiver Veritas by Heeley.
L’air Du Desert Marocain by Tauer.
D600 by Carner Barcelona.