“Thomas, AKA The Candy Perfume Boy, is explaining everything you need to know about fragrance families. From chypre to fougere, after reading this blog series you’ll be an expert in the different types of olfactive groups.”
Aromatic fragrances are those that tend to centre on herbaceous notes such as lavender, mint and sage. There is a bit of a crossover with the fougere (fern) family, but for the most part, the aromatics tend to be drier, greener and a little bit more austere, where the fougères are often softer and more rounded, with a barbershop vibe. Aromatic scents speak of a kind of rugged masculinity that is undeniably handsome – they’re all designer stubble and unbuttoned shirts, presenting masculine beauty in the most natural of ways. Here are five aromatics that you need to get your nose on.
1. The Refined Aromatic
Aramis is the mack daddy of all aromatic fragrances and there’s a reason why gents across the world have worn it for decades: it smells so damn handsome. Aramis is the James Bond of fragrances, but he’s more James Bond at the weekends, you know, when he’s hung up the tux, kicked the double agent out of his bed and has taken a few hours away from espionage to chill in his study (whilst wearing some expensive knitwear of course). Aramis smells herbal, with absinthe and sage atop the smoothest of woods and leather, evoking the image of a British racing green sports car (a Jag because Bond) with tanned leather seats and a walnut dashboard. Show me a more refined scent – go ahead, I’ll wait.
2. The Green Aromatic
Wander Through the Parks plays up the green facets of the aromatic style, taking inspiration from stinging nettles peeking up through the cracks in city pavements. It boasts a bold violet leaf note, which is green, mineral and watery, with shades of grey, against the bitterness of earthy, mossy galbanum. Oh, and there’s lots of juicy grapefruit up top too, just for some extra zhuzz. The result is an intensely green and herbaceous unisex fragrances that draws you straight out of the hustle and bustle of the city and into the peaceful calm of a verdant park. Take a breath and enjoy it.
3. The Fresh Aromatic
Match Point is the latest launch from Lacoste and it’s one of their best. Playing on their tennis heritage, Match Point is fresh and green, with the dry, herbaceous quality of basil blended softly with the coolness of gentian and daring masculinity of vetiver. All together it smells free and airy, like an afternoon spent playing sports out in the fresh air. If only playing tennis was as fun as Match Point smells…
4. The Soft Aromatic
Amouage are known for the grand, opulent and subversive twists on perfumery themes, and Memoir Man is no exception. This presents an ice-cold aromatic with austere notes of absinthe and mint up top, creating a standoffish and angular appearance that is as compelling as it is striking. But with time, Memoir Man softens, unfurling its sharp greenery to reveal a warm and resinous blend of frankincense, leather and moss. Memoir Man reminds us that appearances can be deceiving and that behind even the most stark and jagged elegance, there is always a softer side.
5. The Handsome Aromatic
We’ve gone full circle on the aromatic spectrum now, starting with the suave sophistication of Aramis and ending with the, well, suave sophistication of Eight & Bob Original! This fragrance is so handsome, JFK had to order eight bottles (plus one for his brother, Bobby – hence the name) and that’s quite the celebrity endorsement if you ask me. With crackling spices, violet leaves and woods, Eight & Bob is handsome in the effortless of ways. There’s a reason why I said the aromatics are the most handsome scents out there (and that reason is E&B Original, FYI).