What You Need to Know About Men’s Cologne

Let’s face it.  When it comes to picking out fragrances men tend to be less savvy than women.  For many men knowing which brand to buy, how to apply it and when too much is being used is pretty much guesswork.  On these points let’s give women their due.  However, even though men generally aren’t as adept at choosing and applying colognes are women are at applying perfume, doesn’t mean that we can’t strive to learn.  Here is some information about men’s colognes along with tips on choosing the right one for your body chemistry and applying fragrances so that they do not overwhelm the people around you.

The first thing to note about men’s cologne is that it is not simply perfume for men.  It is in general not as strong as women’s perfume.  In fact, the concentration of fragrance oil in most men’s colognes is typically 8% and 12%.  For perfume it is 15% or more.  Also, men’s fragrances tend to stress darker, warmer wood, spice, or amber “notes,” or the aromatic ingredients that comprise a fragrance.  Finally, men sweat more than women do on the whole.  These facts alone mean that men have to choose and apply their fragrances by a different set of rules than do women.

Choosing the Right Fragrance

Each man’s body chemistry is different as is the case with women.  A man’s fragrance is an unseen part of man’s style.  The best way to choose cologne is to use the tried and true method of spraying the scent on each wrist or on the inner elbow and to then walk around a bit in order to refresh the palate before smelling the fragrance again.  (The recommended areas to apply cologne are the lower jaw, neck, shoulders, chest, the inner elbow, the forearm and the wrist.)

How to Apply Cologne the Right Way

As a rule, when wearing cologne less is more.  You want to wear cologne not marinate in it.  Other tips are: 1) Apply to skin not clothing, 2) Apply after you dry from a shower, 3) Start light, 4) Apply your cologne to “heat” areas of the body.  Those “red zones” include the shoulders and the neck.  Next, men with dry skin should apply cologne more often; men with oily skin should apply cologne less often as oil holds scents longer.  Also, don’t clash with the scents you are already wearing (aftershave, soap, lotion, etc).  Finally, designers of men’s colognes know all the tips and tricks of wearing their fragrances.  Now you can be one step ahead of the next guy by following these tips when choosing and applying your cologne.  Remember, if someone can clearly identify the cologne you are wearing chances are you are wearing too much.

Early Summer Fragrances for 2016, Part II

Most things in life come in cycles.  Fashion comes in cycles.  The waves come in cycles.  The economy is cyclical as well as many other areas of life.  In this, fragrances are no different.  This being the case, it is time once again to shed the old and renew ourselves as only changing our old fragrance can do.  This is what fragrance manufacturers offer us every year.  They know the urge to change, to grow and experience the beauty and splendor that summer provides is too strong to resist.  To that end, here is another list of fragrances designed to re-invigorate us as we cycle into summer.

Fragrances for Men and Women

Hermes ’24 Faubourg’ Perfume for Women – Containing notes of warm vanilla and ambergris, this entry is recommended for use on casual occasions.

Flowerbomb by Viktor & Rolf – This entry, which is designed for romantic settings, features hints of freesia, Centifolia rose, osmanthus and Sambac jasmine supported by a background of patchouli.

Atelier Cologne Bergamote Soleil Cologne Absolue – This unisex fragrance features notes of lavender and oak moss.  It is at once bright and fresh.

Miss Dior Cherie – Sweet, fruity and assertive without being overbearing, this entry contains notes of strawberry leaf and patchouli.

Fragrances for Men

Everyone woman knows how difficult it can be to get men to abandon cologne they feel comfortable with even if it is a standard like Drakkar Noir or Old Spice.  Here are some early summer fragrances for men you may wish to get for your boyfriend or husband to hint at a change.

Bleu De Chanel – Assertive without being overpowering, this entry contains woody scents mixed with citrus notes that are fresh, clean, and sensual.

John Varvatos ‘Artisian Blu’ – Containing notes of bergamot, Egyptian geranium, orange blossom, cedarwood, patchouli, this cologne has an instantly refreshing aroma.

Dior ‘Sauvage’ Eau de Toilette – This entry has actually won many awards in men’s magazines and is growing in popularity as a trending new fragrance.  Its top notes are that of Reggio di Calabria bergamot and its middle notes are of Sichuan pepper and ambroxan.

Hermès Terre d’Hermés Cologne – Another popular entry, Hermès has a masculine aroma with notes of grapefruit, bay rose, geranium, patchouli, benzoin and vetiver.

Yes, life is cyclical and there are time when nature demands of us that we get rid of the old and embrace the new.  Summer exemplifies this mandate as does the fact that styles and fragrances change.  Make the most of these bold, wonderful fragrances and retire your old scent.  First, start off by browsing Lily Direct for your new aroma.

 

The History of Elizabeth Taylor Perfumes

These days everyone and her sister has a cologne or perfume.  The list includes a virtual who’s who of minor celebrities.  So it’s easy to forget a time when this was not a common occurrence. The legendary actress, businesswoman and humanitarian, Elizabeth Taylor, pioneered this trend by being the first.  She was the first celebrity to pioneer her own brand of perfume – along with Eve Arden – with Passion in 1987, the men’s version of Passion in 1989 and White Diamonds in 1991.  And although Taylor had been a talented actress since the early forties and had starred in films such as ‘National Velvet,’ ‘A Place in the Sun’, ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf?’ (co-starring then husband Richard Burton) and ‘Cleopatra’ she did not suffer fools gladly.  According to most sources, it was her venture into developing and endorsing colognes that gained her new fortune and introduced her to a new generation.

White Diamonds instantly began and continues to be a best seller.  The success of White Diamonds would go on to inspire other gem-inspired fragrances from the screen legend such as Diamonds and Emeralds, Diamonds and Rubies, Diamonds and Sapphires all of which came out in 1993.  Finally, Violet Eyes – the last fragrance to come out before her death in 2011 of congestive heart failure – was based on the distinct and captivating color of her eyes.  Fragrances released after her death include White Diamonds Lustre (for women) 2014 and White Diamonds Night (2016) bringing the total number of fragrances to 15.  Today, her fragrances are staples with all perfume retailers.  In fact, no retailer’s inventory would be complete unless it contained a least some of her perfumes.  In 2005, Taylor also founded a jewelry company, House of Taylor, in collaboration with Kathy Ireland and Jack and Monty Abramov.

In a time when every sports, rap, music or reality star of any distinction has a fragrance, it is important to remember that these were not firsts.  These were and are not true trail blazers and the memory of most of these “celebrities” will likely fade with time.  A women who had a long distinguished career and actually excelled to the top of her profession, pioneered the area of celebrities developing and lending their name to fragrances.  Her legacy through her films, philanthropic work continues to this day.  (She was heavily involved in AIDs activism and fund raising.)  No perfume collection is complete without products from this iconic film legend and you can find all lines of Taylor’s fragrances at Lily Direct.

Early Summer Fragrances 2016

There is a certain sterility that comes in winter as we lock ourselves indoors and hide from the cold.  This sterility retreats in spring and summer as new flowers bloom and their familiar fragrances are carried by the warm winds of the seasons.  Every year perfume designers try to capture these early summer fragrances that we all eagerly anticipate after having been deprived for those winter months.  These scents mean the promise of new love.  They mean the return of beauty and color.  They mean the zesty, fresh smell of citrus, and of blooming flowers.  Some of the fragrance brands that are trying to essentially capture summer in a bottle include:

  • Bronze Goddess Estee Lauder – This entry from Estee Lauder contains hints of bergamot, warm amber, tiare flower, and vanilla combined with delicious creamy coconut
  • Marc Jacobs Rain – This perennial favorite is back containing notes of wet cut grass, sparkling wild strawberry, teakwood and dewy cypress.
  • Bond No. 9 New York ‘Hamptons’ – A fragrance for men and women, Hamptons is a subdued scent containing crisp citrus notes added with sandalwood, amber and musk.
  • Jo Malone Peony & Blush Suede Perfume – The essence of this cologne is apple, jasmine, rose and gillyflower all co-mingled into a voluptuous fragrance that is bold and seductive.
  • Yves Saint Laurent ‘Black Opium’ Perfume – This reasonably priced entry has notes of coffee, vanilla, and cedarwood.  It is a lovely selection that is suitable all year round.
  • Tom Ford Café Rose – Described as containing notes of incense resin, sandalwood and patchouli, this entry is also distinguished by its attractive black and purple bottle.
  • Aerin ‘Lilac Path’ – As the name implies, this entry is described as having the soft and springy scent of lilacs mixed with jasmine and other floral aromas.
  • Valentino Valentina Eau de Parfume – This entry contains notes of bergamot, jasmine, strawberry, orange flower, tuberose, cedar, amber and white truffle.

Yes, this year fragrance designers have sought to capture the aromas of summer while at the same time re-introducing us to some of our favorite colognes and perfumes.  The cold, mute scents of winter are gone and we are ready to celebrate by once again partaking in a palate of summer scents.