Armani Code

armani code edgyPolished leather and bergamot tea and suave manners at the start, sweet woods and spice and innuendo at the finish.

For the guy who is aggressively smart, rather than physically dominating.

(But why on earth does Ryan Reynolds’ ARMANI shirt fit him so badly in the advert?!)


I love the Deadpool movies–this is a great cover of Wade’s favorite song.

Acteur

acteurUnusual and interesting.
Opens with a blast of fruity-booze-pepper-smoke, then settles into a really nice herbal–almost medicinal–leathery rose.
The usual feminine notes are switched up, jasmine given muscles and a short-back-and-sides haircut, sweet amber sheared sharp, carnations with teeth.

I’d huff it on a guy in a big way, but I’ll wear it too, with chunky shoes and a rough sweater, in the fall.


This alternative hit (also from 1989) mixes funk and sweetness with an easy groove.

Amber Absolutely

Amber Absolutely editMight be the nicest amber musk I’ve ever tried, but I think I’d need to be a bit less girly-girl to pull it off properly–this one falls more into the laid-back dude territory of unisex.

At first, plums–not the pale juicy kind, the dark prune ones, with that blue rime on the thick skin–drink smoky black currant tea with honey, while wild roses bloom in the distance. Then the amber kicks in with masculine wood, warming up some musky benzoin for several hours.

Quite nice, and projects louder and longer than any other Fort & Manle I’ve tested so far.


A mellow 311 cover–

Juke Joint

juke jointMint juleps–sugary booze and spearmint–with a solid wood note on the bottom.

Becomes a skin scent quickly, but lingers louder on clothes.
It’s got some of the XY gene of Eros and Bleu de Chanel, but with an organic softness that makes me nostalgic for the head shop that sold the best handmade candles and always played B.B. King albums.

The scent might be too simple to represent the complex history of the barrelhouses of the South that gave birth to the blues–but there’s an earthy sweetness to it that I’d enjoy on a guy with a good voice.


Light Blue Pour Homme

light blue pour homme edgyThe same lemon and white musk, but all the sharp herbs and incense smoke make it oversexed.

The glory of the female version, and why it’s such a powerhouse, is the ace quality that strips away any overt gendered invitation.

So by omitting all the sweet notes, the masculine edition just becomes another passive aggressive drink garnish at the patio bar.


Kanye West put out Stronger the same year. It was both as synthetic and popular.

Calycanthus Brumae

Calycanthus Brumae edgyNice for a guy who wants people to believe he just bathed.

Opens with a bit of watery citrus, then the spice-bush kicks in, smoky sweet and earthy–kind of nutmeg-ish with frothy lime flowers–and then ends with ginger tub cleanser.

I bought this one in my quest for calycanthus scents–here the sweet-shrub is overpowered by the bergamot notes and comes across soapy.

It’s nicer on clothes.


This cute song also came out of Italy in 2012.

Wanted

Wanted edgyThis one might need sniffing on a warm body. From the magazine peelie all I get is dentist office–pink saccharine fluoride rinse and lemon antiseptic spray–in a Little Shop of Horrors way.
(And maybe it’s a sexier symbol in France, but the bottle is a turn off in these gun-crazy times in the US…)


A French song with some sweet swagger. I like it better.