My husband has come far. Being dragged unwillingly into the forecourt of Perfumeland by me, he has evolved from wearing Ralph Lauren Polo Blue for years to having a small, but distinguished little stash of high quality fragrances (appointed by me).
Several readers have inquired about men’s perfumes I love, and while I think perfume is genderless, there are doubtlessly fragrances that work better with a men’s chemistry and/or preferences than they work on me.
So what does has my dear husband learned to love?
Puredistance M – pure sophistication. Roja Dove has made a James Bond amber with slight leathery leanings that is just gorgeous. I wear it too. But this one has one caveat according to the Husband: it needs to be dabbed, not sprayed.
Ormonde Jayne Ormonde Man – very similar to my beloved Ormonde Woman, Ormonde Man is fresh, green and mysterious, but very easy to wear.
Ormonde Jayne Zizan: despite claiming to hate vetiver, my husband loves this (he does not know it has quite a lot of vetiver, so pssst!)
Amouage Opus VI – the perfect lightweight summer amber; raw, rough, transparent and unique. In his words: Perfect.
Amouage Honour Man – I know Honour Woman well, but not Man. I never had a chance. My sample was taken from me immediately and I have to do with smelling it on the Husband, not on myself. And what I smell is pretty nice. Quote: Clearly this belongs On A Man!
Serge Lutens Ambre Sultan – I bought that bottle for my own collection, but it has been snatched by the Husband. I’m so proud of him for having such great taste, he is welcome to it. He calls it “Schwedenbitter” (Swedish Bitters), which is an alcohol-based herbal remedy used for indigestion. Serge wouldn’t approve I believe, but we can live with that. The husband says: “M.Lutens need not approve of me, as long as I approve of Ambre Sultan, all is well.”
Serge Lutens L’Eau – he did that all by himself. I actually turfed my sample to him, since I can’t bear it, but he liked it so much, he bought and used a whole bottle by now. I don’t mind it on him, it smells not much different than his freshly ironed shirts. 😉
What the Husband is ignoring:
By Kilian Straight to Heaven: rum, nutmeg, cedarwood, patchouli and musk. That creation by Kilian languishes in his little sample box pretty much ignored. The reason?
Frederic Malle Geranium pour Monsieur: I’m not sure why this gets the cold shoulder, since I like it a lot on a man. Quote: “What is a geranium and why does this fragrance have such a long name? It tries too hard.” Well, then… 🙂
Vetiver Exraordinaire: he doesn’t like the name (includes vetiver and vetiver is bad for some reason), so this doesn’t stand a chance. I’m miffed, because I could have used my sample allottment at the boutique for something I could actually use, but selflessly chose some masculine scents for him to try.
So that is a nice little stable of scents the Husband has for now. My next mission is to get him hooked on Guerlain. I would love to see him wear Habit Rouge for example. I’m working on it…
What are your favorite masculine fragrances?
I’m sure he ignores all PGs as well, as the calls him “parfum nackabazl (naked perfume man), and he certainly would not smell asummetically 🙂
He indeed did not yet venture into the world of ypG, but through no fault of his own: I want PG for myself, he is ALL MINE!!!
Sorry, I didn’t mean to get loud. 😉
forget it he´s mine……MINE, MINE!!!!!!
Okay, okay… but I’ll keep the perfumes. 😉
My husband does not want a perfume selection for himself. He is content with mainstream Chanel Bleu for work and for weekends and trips he uses Hermessence Paprika Brasil, Brin de Reglisse and he enjoys Kilian’s Incense Oud in the winter.
Well, that is quite a little collection right there, isn’t it? 🙂
For a second I misread “Paprika Basil” and was immediately taken. The image of soup! With Brasil I am not so sure but will try if it comes my way.
Did you try Eau de Bacon yet???
He has great taste indeed. Several of my favorites are mentioned in this blog post. Serge Lutens l’Eau (I know, I know), Ormonde Man, Vétiver Extraordinaire (ok, he didn’t really approve of this one).
Other big time favourites of mine are Frederic Malle Musc Ravageur, Lutens Chergui, Divine l’Homme de Cœur, Guerlain Habit Rouge, l’Instant pour Homme and l’Eau de Guerlain.
Puredistance M is a sample I’ve ordered recently and is on it’s way. Now I have to try Ormonde Jayne Zizan for sure. Amouage is something I’ve always had a problem with before: Big and mushy unfocused fragrances, but I haven’t kept up with their releases in recent years. Maybe they’ve changed?
I’m sure you’ll love M, it is great, let me know what you think, please!
Your favorites are beautiful, I have Musc Ravageur, I should let my husband try it, although I think he might perceive it as too dirty (which it isn’t really, but I know my husband…)
Regarding the husband’s taste – he’ll be inordinately proud about your compliment and I’ll never hear the end of it. 🙂
Your husband really has good taste! 🙂 Ambre Sultan? Wow.
Btw, my boyfriend also love L’Eau and when I was in Paris I got him a bottle.
It is surprising that he goes for Ambre Sultan, although he is usually a fan of aquatics, but there it is…
Aquatics are for everyday summer wear. The rest is for the other seasons or special occasions.
Really enjoyed this little round-up of the scents The Husband likes and dislikes. Especially loved the quotes! I am very glad that all is well between him and M. Lutens. Can’t believe he got through a whole bottle of L’Eau but I guess “normal” people do that.
I love Bois d’Argent which was originally a men’s cologne but doesn’t smell at all manly. Recently got a sample of Angeliques sous la Pluie which I really, really like but seems to be quoted as “masculine” quite a lot. Opus V! was genderless on me too so I’ll take that one as well 🙂
Yes, lol, normal people do that. I was just as surprised as you. 🙂
Bois d’Argent is great and I think it is a bit similar to Angeliques (and Voyage d’Hermes).
Mr. O certainly has taste, a fact that I’m sure you have had a strong influence on!
He really should give Geranium Pour Monsieur a chance, have you thought about selling it to him as the ‘thinking-man’s mint’? It is rather clever after all.
Nigel wears Tom Ford for Men & Oud Wood, Guerlain Homme (in most incarnations), Voyage d’Hermes, Mugler Cologne and many other similar masculines but my absolute favourite thing he wears is Antiheros by Etat Libre d’Orange. He really suits lavender!
I’m sure of that as well. 😉
Nigels choices are great, good that he has found something to love in the EldO range too, since you are a fan.
Your husband has great taste for sure. I have not tried Amouage Opus VI, but have been looking for a nice summer amber. As for Straight to Heaven, I lean with your husband, I seem to have issues with the By Kilian fragrances. They look great on paper, but don’t fare well with the body. My all-time favorite all man fragrance is Bel Ami by Hermes. Fun read. Thanks!
Bel Ami sounds like a great classic masculine.
Opus VI is a good choice for a summer amber, transparent and unusual.
Hm, there is 15ml of Schwedenbitter waiting for me to be picked up from the postoffice – my expectations are now a bit cooled down (but there is also a belljar of Vetiver Orientale sitting next to it and that one keeps me real hot !)
Yay, you got a bell jar! I hope you get on just as well with the Schwedenbitter.
BTW, my SO wears Egoiste or Antaeus, since I know him (10 years…) – so he’s either a true heart, or has no phantasy…
Lol, let’s give him the benefit of the doubt and call him loyal. 🙂
I’d say Mr Olfactoria is doing extremely well! And he’s allowed not to like vetivert: it’s a note that seems to be off-putting to many people. Madame Persolaise can’t take it either, although she doesn’t mind it when it takes a back seat within a composition.
He’ll be happy to hear that! 🙂
Of course he is allowed to hate vetiver, but I suspect he only hates what he thinks is vetiver, but is something else entirely, what that is is yet to be determined…
My beloved wears Dior Homme, Dior Eau Savage, Lauder’s Azuree, Tom Ford Black Orchid, and Chanel Pour Monsieur.
Hmmm, sounds good!
I second Dior Eau Sauvage. Classic, refined, timeless. Just make sure it’s the EDT with the silver label, and not the parfum with the black label.
Eau Sauvage is excellent, although the current formulation has sadly lost a lot of its former character…
Thank you for this post!!!! Now I am going to get samples for my sweet BF.
You are welcome, he’s in for a treat. 🙂
Wowzers! Mr. O has fantastic taste indeed (I can forgive SL L’Eau, with the rest of that line-up)!
I especially love that he’s fallen for the spicier, amber frags: looks like the Queen of Amber has an Amber court 🙂
Mr. H has his usual rotation (Bulgari Black, Chanel 5 & 19, Champagne de Bois), but recently, with the help of my blogging friends, we tested our way through a big pile of scents to find “His” scent (in the way at our house that Memoir is “Mine,” a sort of signature-light)… And success! A huge, 100mL bottle of, drumroll please, VC&A Midnight in Paris will be his in just a few weeks on his birthday! He’s still using up his sample (how sweet is that?), and the process has been so much fun that I think we’ll build his stable with yearly additions 🙂
It is a really good thing that he likes ambers too, maybe it is the constant exposure…
Excellent news that Matt has found his perfume! I have not smelled this yet, now I shall go looking for it. I must know what Mr Howe’s King of the World scent is like asap.
It’s sort of a more feminine version of Bulgari Black (there’s some powder), it’s very nice, but I found that I liked it better after sniffing it on someone else 😉
I’ll try it today, since I’ll go for a little sniffing tour. (It’s 20% off day! 😉 )
Mr. Olfactoria has great taste, Birgit. You’ve steered him well. Puredistance M and Ambre Sultan are sooo gorgeous!
My mister doesn’t care for Geranium Pour Monsieur either, so I wear that one myself. But I can’t complain because, like your husband, he really loves amber scents and especially Amouage Opus VI; Tarleisio kindly sent me a decant which is not going to last long since we are both wearing it like crazy. His favorite scent, though, is Montale Black Aoud, and he has learned to use just one spritz (which is important with that one) and it really does smell amazing on him.
Those two are my favorites in his little stable as well.
Glad you got to test Opus VI!
As I mentioned in an earlier post, The Engineer has only recently expressed an interest in trying stuff, and we discovered quite quickly that vetiver on him makes me all rowr! He put in a sample order last week (after I made a ginormous spreadsheet for him of the possibilities ;)), so he’ll be testing soon.
Archimedes, on the other hand, is very interested in scent. He’s saved up for LADDM, and agreed that I could borrow it and make some samples from it if I’d get a bottle of pre-reformulation Dior Homme for us to share. He also likes Lonestar Memories and Tabac Aurea, and scored some samples of Bond’s I Love NY For All that he’s been wearing. Not bad for a 16yo.
Your son talking about pre-reformulation and wearing LAdDm makes me proud. You did really well with him!
Have fun with the vetiver testing (both of you!) 😉
That’s a nice list. Ambre Sultan is one of my stalwarts as well, and my wife loves to smell it on me. The others you list sound good; I should try them!
There are lots of others I use regularly, but the favorites include Habit Rouge, Derby, and Arsene Lupin Dandy from Guerlain, Chergui from Lutens, Ineke Field Notes from Paris, several Tauers, Chanel Sycomore, Encre Noire, and Montale Black Aoud.
Very nices choices, Fernando.
Unfortunately my husband think Guerlain is not for him, but he never smelled a single of their masculines… I really must work on that.
Those are good scents in both the love and ignore category. His ignore list holds more of my loves, actually. I like Ambre Sultan but haven’t tried any of the others from that list. However, I love all three in his ignore category. My favorite is VE. That was my introduction to the vetiver note. By the way, would I get in trouble if I say that I think Polo Blue smells good 🙂 There are much better fragrances to be found. But among the aquatics that is one of the best, in my opinion.
I subscribe to your thoughts about fragrances being genderless, but I tend to seek out the classic men’s fragrances more than any other category. You and any of your readers who might follow me on twitter are probably familiar with many of those that I like best. But I’ll list a few here: Dior Eau Sauvage, Guerlain Vetiver and Habit Rouge, Bvlgari Black, Chanel Pour Monsieur and Antaeus, Penhaligon’s English Fern and Blenheim Bouquet. Also, a couple of inexpensive ones that I love are Old Spice and Tabac Original (edc).
I think you should keep trying to get Mr. O hooked on Guerlain. So many good fragrances in the line. Lastly, I thought I would mention that I have been working on a blog post about fragrances. Hopefully it will be ready soon 🙂
I see the taste of your husband is improving. I have luck, my is wearing Habit Ruge and it smell like sweet suede. And the best of all is L’Air du Desert Marocain by Andy Tauer, he has also bought himself a second bottle of Cacharel’s Nemo, slightly more masculine than L’Air… He surprised me with buying Gaultier’s Fleur du Male. It is really unusuall perfume for a man and I don’t particulary like it, but on him it smells gorgeous.
I somehow managed to drag him away from masculine aquatics. For now ;-).
My homme has good taste too! He mostly wears Aramis, Philosykos, Third Man, a limited-edition patchouli scent from Liz Zorn, Bulgari Black, and Paco Rabanne Pour Homme.
Great sub-collection! The husband smells good!
I’m building my vSO’s collection as well. For now it has just a several full bottles that are his exclusively and the rest (of his) we share… (insert a blushing smiley here).
He does. 🙂
Sharing perfume is very nice, I like that.
My BF wore Fresh’s Sugar Lemon when I met him and has since added L’Artisan’s Mure et Musc Cologne and Acqua di Parma’s Aracia di Capri. All of his own choosing *proud* 😉 He wants a vanilla now after nicking my Eau Duelle…
He did well! 🙂
I have a very similar experience with my own significant other, just opposites when it comes to the genders! She’s not quite “into” fragrances the same way I am, but being around me so much has made her a little more interested. I managed to get her a nice little collection going of scents that I figured I’d like ; )
That sounds quite like my situation. A lucky wife you have! 🙂
Guerlain is hit or miss for me. I absolutely despise Habit Rouge. It’s too floral on me. The Vetiver was another one that smelled fantastic in the store, but after wearing it for a few hours, it just didn’t sit well with me. One fragrance that I do find very appealing is Guerlain’s L’Instant de Guerlain. Get him to try that one. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. If you’re looking to trick him into wearing a vetiver, try Chanel Sycomore. The vetiver notes are there, but it wears differently on different people. He may not notice it. It’s marketed to women, but it is most definitely a masculine fragrance; you could both wear it, and would probably have different experiences with it. I guess it’s the difference between men’s and women’s body chemistry. It’s part of the Les Exclusifs line, so you can only find it in a Chanel boutique, or certain high end dept. stores like Bergdorf’s. It is well worth the hunt though. I highly suggest it!
I do own a bottle of Sycomore, it is a good idea to let my husband try it. Thank you! 🙂
How daring is he? Could you talk him into trying COCO? I’m wearing it right now, and a friend of mine who is a woman is wearing it today too. It smells completely different on each of us. Feminine on her, masculine on me. Would he do it? 🙂
Not in a million years! 🙂 He is the antithesis of daring when it comes to perfume.
Coco on a man sounds intriguing…
my favourites are… Tom ford Tuscan leather (yummy and sexy!), Philosykos, penhaligon’s sartorial and Miller Harris – Petit grain and Pamplemouse…
I am now thinking of getting black afgano and Chanel Sycomore. Though I am not a fan of vetiver, Sycomore did feel good on me…
lovely perfumes indeed. Sycomore is a great choice, I love it both on my husband and on myself.