The best thing about fragrances is the constant reinvention and freshness put into their alchemy. Each scent has a certain perspective and angle, like music or fashion. They are all time capsules, tiny scent bombs that embody the season in which they were released.
For spring and summer this year, floral, fougere and musky fresh notes have the most staying power for men’s fragrances. Perfumers are upping their ante with magnifying scents of bergamot, vetiver and musky nuances.
Ermenegildo Zegna has been known to anchor bergamot in its range of fragrances, especially with its latest release of five distinct perfumes that are layered in citrusy bergamot notes. On the other hand, Bvlgari’s latest drop, Le Gemme Trilogy, highlights different notes of musk – from white to black musk – as a tribute to the Middle East, the cradle of perfumery.
Herbaceous notes are also going to be big this summer with the likes of Diptyque Eau de Minthé and Tom Ford’s Beau de Jour incorporating fresh ingredients like rosemary and patchouli. These refreshing fragrances are best for both day and night, allowing you to stretch each spritz without having to switch scents.
For many (especially fragrance snobs), it is about looking for a new signature scent or a bottle that you want to stick to all year long. Here are some of the best men’s fragrances to help you be summer-ready in 2019.
In the latest Bulgari Le Gemme trilogy, musk is the star ingredient. The dynamic and multi-layered musks mirror the duality of sensuality and freshness that is at the heart of the Roman jeweller’s distinctive style. The subtle base notes are long-lasting and clean but defined individually in three variations. The Opalon, a tribute to Australian white opal, expresses the fresh light of a Roman morning with comforting notes of white musk and neroli. Yasep, inspired by red jasper, carries a bold woody musky scent with a full-bodied sandalwood soul. The third scent, Falkar dances in black musk accord with hints of leather saffron and agarwood, an homage to the blue-green iridescence of Brazilian Falcon’s Eye. Each perfume evokes the spirit of a single jewel, which serves as the inspiration to its dynamic bottle design.
Givaudan perfumers Jordi Fernandez, Antoine Maisondieu and Olivier Pescheux combine the lead notes of perennial classics like vetiver, bergamot and patchouli into the new Montblanc Explorer. The first spritz gives out a light grassy scent that slowly grows into a strong musky finish. The Montblanc Explorer stands up on its own as a versatile, easy day-to-night, year-round scent.
The Gentleman line is magnified with a summery interpretation and a very clean look. It already has the refreshing appeal of lemon, bergamot and rosemary but the latest scent is injected with iris to keep things interesting and an ambrosian base to anchor the floaty citrusy top notes. The bright and zesty spritz will keep you feeling fresh all day.
Louis Vuitton invites you to immerse in its latest unisex perfumes – Sun Song, Cactus Garden and Afternoon Swim. Concocted by artist Alex Israel and in-house perfumer Jacques Cavallier-Belletrud, the Les Colognes set comes in a longer-lasting eau de parfum formula. Sun Song captures the heady blaze of summer with lemon and orange blossom over the underlying musk notes. Afternoon Swim accents the cool water with a refreshing citrusy spritz while Cactus Garden carries dry and wet green notes to evoke the scent of cacti.
Tom Ford’s latest Beau de Jour can easily be your new signature scent. This fougere scent hits you from every angle – patchouli and amber base notes give it a warm foundation, while lavender makes a fresh impression from the first spritz. The perfume is balanced with a herbaceous bouquet of rosemary, mint, basil and moss. It is warm enough for the night but light enough for day. If you’re a man of one scene, you can stick with Beau de Jour all year long.
Like Beau de Jour, the latest release by Diptyque carries fougere notes that are akin to ferns. The scent is both herbal and earthy, centred on one perennial herb — mint. Its freshness is embellished with florals from geranium and rose, and anchored by a tuft of patchouli.
Ermenegildo Zegna and The Estée Lauder Companies launched a bespoke fragrance collection, Essenze Eau de Parfum at the recent Salone del Mobile in Milan. The collection features five distinct fragrances – Mediterranean Neroli, Indonesian Oud, Madras Cardamom, Florentine Iris and Italian Bergamot (Zegna’s exclusive Bergamot is harvested from a single field in Italy’s sun-soaked region of Calabria). The collection can complement any occasion as it accentuates the dynamic lifestyle and elegant informality of modern gentlemen. The Indonesian Oud is best for everyday use especially with a combination of patchouli and smouldering amber notes. If you’re looking for something classic, Italian Bergamot is perfect for the summer days with top notes of bergamot and pepper, woven with herbaceous mid notes and warm base notes of vetiver and tonka bean.
Crafted by master perfumer Annick Menardo, the Boss Bottled Infinite invites the urban man to choose a scent that reflects his needs for the day – enabling him to be the best version of himself. The fragrance opens on a refreshing, sparkling top note of mandarin and apple warmed with a hint of cinnamon and sage. As the scent lingers, you get aromatic notes of patchouli, rosemary and lavender before the deep base notes unfold, exposing rich sandalwood and olivewood. Boss Bottled Infinite is also the first fine fragrance using the “diamond technology”, which makes the top and heart notes last longer on the skin while maintaining the initial scent.