Calvin Klein Man – Fragrance Review

Fragrance: Calvin Klein Man
House: Calvin Klein
Year of Release: 2007
Ideal for: All-day and evening
Some CK fans have come to believe that the brand has not been able to create too many distinctive Men’s fragrances over the last few years. ‘Calvin Klein Man’ should help change that perception. The top notes don’t make a great impression; I found the first whiff slightly overwhelming and felt it might not work as an all-day fragrance especially in humid weather. But the fragrance really assumes a different character once it settles and the middle notes take over. The nutmeg gives this fragrance a distinctive feel and the spearmint keeps it fresh. The fragrance scores reasonably well on the lasting power quotient but most of all it works because it is a truly unique fragrance and certainly one of 2007’s finer men’s fragrances. It does not scream for attention and yet makes a statement.
Notes: Top- Rosemary, Mandarin, Bergamot, Violet leaf / Middle – Nutmeg, Bay, Spearmint, Incense / Base – Cypress, Guaiac, Sandalwood, Amberwood



Gucci Pour Homme II – Review

Fragrance: Gucci Pour Homme II

House: Gucci

Year of Release: 2007

Ideal for:
All-day and evening

Gucci Pour Homme II is easily one of the most unique fragrances to hit the shelves over the last one year. Karine Dubreuil who has created some very interesting fragrances for women including Gucci Envy Me (2004) and Salvatore Ferragamo Incanto Shine (2007) proves that it takes a woman to create a truly distinctive fragrance for a man. Don’t let this fragrance’s blue aquatic colour fool you. Gucci Pour Homme II is no aquatic fragrance (Normally all men’s fragrances in a blue hue are always deemed to be aquatic!). The fragrance is a truly interesting blend of rare fragrance elements. The top notes are terrific – Bergamont and the refreshing violet leaves; but don’t last forever. What stays are some of the middle and base notes especially the black tea, the light musk and the subtle fragrance of cured tobacco leaves. The endearing base notes make this a fragrance with great staying power. The other reason I like Gucci Pour Home II is the fact that its one of those rare fragrances that is perfect for all-day use and still makes a statement at a party!

Notes: Top – Bergamot, Violet Leaves / Middle – Pimento, Black Tea, Cinnamon / Base – Tobacco Leaves, Musk, Myrrh, Olive Wood.

Useful Links: Official Website TV Commercial

(Image Courtesy: Gucci)

Hypnose Homme – Fragrance Review

Fragrance: Hypnose Homme

House: Lancome

Year of Release: 2007

Ideal for: Evening / Cool and Pleasant Weather

Lancome’s Hypnose Homme was easily one of the most discussed (with Clive Owen in the commercials) fragrance launches of 2007; the women’s version was launched in 2005. Hypnose is easily one of the most unique fragrances for men and if you are seeking a new fragrance experience it certainly does not disappoint. And there is good reason for this. The fragrance was created by award-winning perfumer Maurice Roucel who has created over 20 fragrances including two of my favourite men’s fragrances – Gucci Envy (1997) and Dunhill Fresh (2005). Hypnose is as inimitable as Envy and equally heavy! It is not a fragrance for hot humid weather but is a terrific fragrance for the evening and for milder climes. For me the most distinctive element is the middle note – Lavender; this is what dominates the fragrance and sets it apart. The fragrance is pitched as a very oriental experience and it meets the promise. Definitely one of a kind and very masculine but not recommended for humid weather. And the packaging (The Bottle) is truly awesome.

Notes: Top – Bergamot, Calabrian Mandarin, Chinese Cardamom, Mint / Middle – Lavender / Base – Amber, Patchouli, Musk

Useful Links: Official Website TV Commercial on Youtube

(Image Courtesy: Lancome)

Hugo XY – Fragrance Review

Fragrance: Hugo XY Man

House: Hugo Boss

Year of Release: 2007

Ideal for: All Day

Hugo Boss launched the XY for men and XX for women (But naturally!) in 2007 and has promoted both these fragrances on a single platform with the tagline – Harmony is overrated. Hugo Boss has been very busy with a series of fragrance releases over the past few years. In fact XY’s launch has been quickly followed up with the launch of Boss Pure in 2008. XY however is the latest launch from this brand in India. The P&G distribution connection also makes sure that Hugo Boss fragrances are available at more outlets than most other fragrances in India. I liked this fragrance more than a lot of the other Boss fragrances that have been out in the recent past. Its probably because the base notes are very similar to Acqua di Gio by Giorgio Armani (1996) which is easily one of my favourite fresh fragrances. The top notes smell very different but once the fragrance ‘settles’ the base notes – Cedar, Patchouli and Muskroot take over. They are almost the same as Acqua di Gio which has Cedar, Patcholi and White Musk. XY is a great summer fragrance and for all day-use and it scores reasonably well on the ‘lasting power’ factor too.

Notes: Top –Cedrat, Bergamot, Pear tree leaf / Middle – Crushed ice accord, Mint, Basil leaf. /Base – Lebanese cedar, Patchouli, Muskroot.

Useful Links: Official Website TV Commercial on Youtube

(Image Courtesy: Hugo Boss)

Fahrenheit 32 – Fragrance Review

Fragrance: Fahrenheit 32

House: Christian Dior

Year of Release: 2007

Ideal for: All Day

Christian Dior’s Fahrenheit 32 is the last release for men from this fashion house. It was crafted by perfumer Louise Turner (Other fragrances include JLo Glow and Thiery Mugler Eau de Star) to be an anti-thesis of arguably the most popular fragrance from CD – Fahrenheit (1988). I like the name Fahrenheit 32 – the freezing point of water! The packaging is quite outstanding – A great combination of Frosty white and a metallic hue with the same popular bottle shape of the original Fahrenheit. If Fahrenheit is meant for the winter this fragrance is all about cool! Dior officially describes this fragrance as a Fresh Oriental. I didn’t quite see the oriental connection but I liked the fresh and the lasting element in this fragrance. You don’t normally expect fresh fragrances to last for many hours, but this one does. Some people have known to find this fragrance a bit powdery but I don’t think that should be a deal breaker. The top note (Orange Blossom) and the middle note (Vetiver) don’t make a strong impression whilst the base note Vanilla does. It is this note that makes it quite a neutral fragrance – not the run-of-the-mill masculine and certainly not feminine. That might well be its strength and weakness! You might like this if you like Diesel Plus Plus by Diesel.

Notes: Top – Orange Blossom / Middle – Vetiver / Base – Vanilla

Useful Links: TV Commercial, Official Website

Escada Moon Sparkle for Men – Fragrance Review

Fragrance: Moon Sparkle for Sexy Men

House: Escada

Year of Release: 2007

Ideal for: All Day

Escada’s Yearly limited edition fashion fragrance Moon Sparkle was launched in 2007 globally. The fragrance has been crafted in the ‘his’ and ‘her’ versions. The Men’s version of Moon Sparkle has just been launched in India. A Look at the various elements that make up this fragrance might suggest that this is one of those ‘different’ fragrances. It sure is but it also fails to make a serious impression; neither do any of the various notes stand out nor do they come together to create a lasting distinctive fragrance. The problem is it tries to be aquatic, citrus and woody at the same time. It hits you as a fresh fragrance for the first few minutes after you wear it but that freshness does not linger; the base notes (Cedar and Vertiver) take over. You might like this fragrance if you fancy Kenzo pour homme (1991) which also has the same base notes (Cedar and Vetiver). Moon sparkle does not score too heavily on the ‘lasting power’ factor either.

Notes: Top – Mandarin, bergamot, ginger, and pepper/ Middle – Violet, grape leaf, and lotus/ Base – Cedar and vetiver.

Useful Links: Official Website

(Image Courtesy: Escada)

212 Sexy Men – Carolina Herrera: Fragrance Review

Fragrance: 212 Sexy Men
House: Carolina Herrera
Year of Release: 2006
Ideal for: the Evening and Parties
Most (!) men wear perfumes to impress the women; so logic suggests fragrances created by women would be a natural choice. And I believe Carolina Herrera certainly knows how to put together the right fragrance. 212 is easily one of the fastest selling fragrances for men in India since it was launched in 1997. It probably worked because it really lasts on most skin types even in humid weather. 212 Sexy Men with its strong New York identity is a more pleasant fragrance compared to 212 and it lasts too. 212 Sexy Men came two years after the success of the Women’s version that was launched in 2004. I like this fragrance because it is a great blend of a Citric Top note, a Spicy Middle note and a Woody Oriental Base note. This fragrance smells a lot like Touch (Burberry) another fragrance that lasts for hours on end. I love the Packaging of this fragrance; it is identical to the ‘Magnetic’ 212 packaging except in a more evening colour. You will really dig this fragrance if you like Touch (Burberry) or Armani Code by Giorgio Armani.
Notes: Top – Bergamont, Mandarin, Green Leaf/ Middle – Cardamom, Pepper, Flower Petals/ Base – Sandalwood, Musk, Vanilla, Amber
Useful Links: Official Website TV Commercial
(Image Courtesy: Carolina Herrera)