Let’s face it Ladies and Gents: A good smelling man is a very sexy thing indeed! Maybe the guy in your life already smells nice and just needs an update. If he’s clueless and needs a helping hand, CGR has you covered with classics and outside the box suggestions to delight everyone in sniffing range! Here is our Valentine’s Day gift ideas for that special man in your life:
1. Prada Luna Rossa retails for $62 for 1.7 oz. This scent is light but has a lot of depth to it. Even though it’s marketed as a “Sport” scent it’s got lasting power and some ingredients that most fresh smelling “Sport” scents do not, making it quite unique. The official notes are: Orange Essence, Lavender Absolue, Clary Sage, Spearmint Nanah, Ambroxan, and Ambrette Absolue. You can certainly smell every note by itself as well as blended together. It’s hard to describe! Even though it’s fresh and herbal, it’s got real depth and sexiness to it with the amber and slight musk in the backdrop. It’s got a bit of silage in the beginning coming from the herbs but it is mostly a skin scent. Prada Luna Rossa straddles the unisex line and I love it on myself even though it’s a touch more herbal then I like my fragrances. This is super appropriate for every occasion or season and it’s memorable! If you could imagine a man wearing amber and musk oil standing in a field of herbs in Tuscany right after the rain, the driveway to the manor house behind him flanked with blooming orange trees… sounds like a trip to the hay loft if you know what I mean!
2. YSL L’Homme retails for $65 for 2.0 oz. I love everything about this scent! It’s perfect for daytime but just sexy enough for nighttime. It’s fresh, woody, and spicy but with a rounded softness so it’s never harsh. The official notes are: Bergamot, Cedar, Ozonic Notes, White Ginger, Basil Flower, White Pepper, Violet Leaves, Cedarwood, Haiti Vetiver, and Tonka Bean. This opens fresh and borderline aquatic but with some cedar in the top to ground it. The heart is ginger, basil, pepper, and violet with a bit of the top notes still lingering. The base is creamy and musky but with a little of the heart notes still clinging to the skin, keeping it from becoming one dimensional. It’s got medium silage for the first few hours and then it dries down into a skin scent that can get a little more silage through body heat. Development time is in the hours on this and it lasts all day. This is one I buy for my man again and again. It smells great on everyone I’ve tried it on except me. My female chemistry made the ginger and vetiver explode somehow and it took 10 hours to calm down so I think this one belongs more to the men out there unless you’re into that sort of thing. There is something magnetic about this one and I can’t keep my hands off my husband when he’s wearing it!
3. BVLGARI AQVA Pour Homme retails for $79 for 3.4 oz. This is a great scent because its one of those fresh aquatic scents but for grown-ups. It’s subtly sexy as well and the most traditionally “manly” smelling out of these three. The official notes are: Mandarin, Petit Grain, Santolina, Posidonia, and Mineral Amber. It opens very aquatic but with citrus to balance it out. The petit grain is found throughout the whole composition. The dry down is more amber-ish, but it’s a very crystalline and light amber. If you like Light Blue or Acqua Di Gio but want a bit more of depth and sophistication, this one is a great choice. I can’t comment on the wear time because I’ve smelled it on paper. It’s too manly for me to try to pull it off as a unisex scent.
Now we move on to smoky, sexy, spicy and the naughty herbal concoctions that might not be out of place in the Red Light District!
1. Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb retails for $105 for 3 oz. Holy Baby Jesus in the manger! This is some amazing juice. It’s essentially a scaled down version of Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille. This scent, like the Tom Ford, is unisex in my estimation but it’s a bit more subtle then Tobacco Vanille. The official notes are: Bergamot, Grapefruit, Cinnamon Leaf, Pink Pepper, Lavandin, Chilli, Saffron, Elemi, Vetiver, Balsam Fir, Tobacco Accord, White Leather Accord. Spicebomb explodes upon application with citrus and pepper notes. Right after the initial scents to my nose, I get Nutmeg and Cinnamon even though Nutmeg isn’t in the notes listed. It’s a dry spice slightly, ever so slightly, sweetened by lavender and Elemi. Chili and Saffron make their mark in the mid development of the scent without losing the top notes. Everything starts to blend together in the dry down coming together on a profuse and delicious base of sweet tobacco and leather. The Balsam Fir note pokes it head up with vetiver to back it up from time to time in the dry down phase but isn’t always present when I have worn it. This lasts on the skin for 1-2 days and on clothes for weeks. The initial silage is quite great for an EDT. It quickly mellows into a spicy skin scent that lasts forever. I adore this scent and have only smelled it on a few. It’s addictive and I plan on getting a bottle for me and the Hubby to split ASAP.
2. TOM FORD Tobacco Vanille retails for $290 for 3.4 oz. This is quite possibly one of my favorites. It’s a masterpiece and 100% worth the price. It’s also 100% unisex. The official notes are: ginger, tobacco leaves, anise, coriander, tobacco flower, clove, spices, fruit wood sap, benzoin, vanilla, tonka bean. Tobacco Vanille is super spicy but also sweet. On a man the spice and tobacco star and on a woman the vanilla, benzoin, and tonka are supported by the spices and the tobacco keeping it from becoming to sweet. It’s amazing on either sex. This scent has moderate silage on both sexes and calms after 3 – 4 hours into a long lasting skin scent. I’ve had this last on a coat for almost a month. On my skin it will last 2 days. For everyone I smell it on a different note seems to come forward a little more than another making it smell like a unique custom blend for everyone who wears it but still unmistakably the same scent. Über Sexy. Do yourself a favor: roll up on Nordstrom and ask for a sample today!
3. Cannabis Santal by Fresh retails for $88 for 3.4 oz. This smells really good! It’s not quite as bombastic as the previous two but it’s cannabis accord makes it smell a bit naughty! It’s official notes are: Wild Strawberries, Kumquat, Dark Plum, Patchouli, Magnolia, Rose, Chocolate, Vetiver, Vanilla Musk. There is a cannabis accord in the brew just not mentioned in this copy. It’s 100% unisex too (are you noticing a trend?). It starts off with delicious fruits and florals. The cannabis accord then makes it’s debut supported by chocolate, vetiver, and a slightly deeper floral. The patchouli smooths the transition into the vanilla musk and continued cannabis accord. I have bought this for my brother a few times and it smells utterly delectable. It will certainly give you the munchies and make you very popular! On a man it’s more herbal and musky with the florals and sweets being very dry. On a woman it’s got those qualities just slightly sweeter than when worn by a man. Overall, it’s a harmonious blend and it lasts for hours. The silage is low but present for the first few hours until it becomes a skin scent.
4. YSL La Nuit De L’Homme retails for $65 for 2 oz. This is a flanker to L’Homme but really is unique in it’s own right. There is a lot of controversy over what this actually has in it on the interweb, so I’m just going to explain it to you as best I can. HOLY.GOD.IN.HEAVEN.SAVE.ME.FROM.MYSELF. This has the same magnetic pull and lasting power as the original but it’s much darker and sweeter. I never thought I liked a semi-sweet scent on a man until I smelled this on my Husband (this could be worn by a woman just as easily). Honestly, I’m powerless against it. It starts off in a rush of bergamot, cedar, and spice. Then it brings out a whole different set of spices along with what seems to be vanilla, fruits, and a light dry incense. It settles after a few hours into a sweet musky skin scent with a touch of spice and tobacco. This juice is powerful with high silage for the first hour so be warned! One spray, and one spray only! (said in my best Sean Connery voice riffing on The Hunt For Red October)
5. BVLGARI BLACK retails for $77 for 2.5 oz. This is such a strange and beautiful creation. Rubber. Pencil Shavings. Smoking Tea. I understand this may not like seem like it’s for you but you’d be silly not to try it. It’s ethereal, elegant, and sexy as hell. It’s very understated too. The official notes are: bergamot, smoky tea, jasmine, cedarwood, sandalwood, leather, amber, musk, vanilla, resins. The sum of it’s parts however create something so dark and magical you are transported to an urban fantasy land where mythical creatures and Fae walk beside man in the dystopian future. It’s 100% unisex and smells equally good on either sex. It’s very loud on first spritz with rubber and smoke but settles almost immediately into a skin scent of smoky tea laced with vanilla and other tea scents (Jasmine, Earl Grey). The woods, amber, and leather come and go throughout the rest of the development. Occasionally you get rubber still but it’s not as scary or as BDSM as it sounds. I could wear this daily and never tire of it. It lasts all day on skin and longer on clothes. I always have a bottle on my dresser. I love it on my husband too and it’s perfect for sharing!
I hope you have found something out of this Valentine’s Day gift ideas lineup to give as a gift, or at least, go score a sample for yourself! If you have a favorite men’s fragrance you’d like to talk about tell us in the comments below!