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Follow your nose: How to find your signature scent

 Does a gentleman need to perfume himself? Not necessarily, because on most days, water, soap and deodorant are enough to cope with the animal fumes from the human body. On the other hand, nobody wears a tie with the intention of protecting themselves from the cold. Beyond the boundaries of boring necessity, both binders and fragrances are there to underline the character of the wearer and to define their personal style. No true gentleman should miss this opportunity.

But what fragrance distinguishes man from the world from the parvenu? Certainly not one you can find around the corner from Douglas. As in most of the big perfumeries, now almost exclusively more or less lovelessly mixed-up water with the likeness of more or less well-known stars is marketed here. Fortunately, these creations disappear from the shelf after a short time - but only to make way for the next celebrity plague. A regrettable trend that should by no means be supported.

Portrait of a handsome half naked man spraying perfume

Unfortunate trend towards celebrity bribes

As with coffee, the same applies to perfume: what is good for George Clooney does not have to be good enough for you. So don't be fooled by names and packaging and instead trust your nose and common sense. With combined forces, you will guide the two accurately to the fragrance that will become your new most loyal companion. On your next shopping spree or city trip, just keep an eye out for well-stocked specialty shops and products from local manufacturers. Some are still or now mixed again by hand and in limited editions - a ray of hope in the growing stream of arbitrariness. The Internet is also an effective source for exclusive compositions, whereby you should always order samples or test sizes of unknown perfumes in advance.

Classic men's fragrances can be divided into four broad major categories: woody, tart, fresh and oriental (spicy-sweet). Most recipes are mixed forms in which other scents such as earthy or flowery can also be used. The woody-fresh combination is the gray suit among perfumes: Always fits, but hardly leaves a lasting impression.

In our latitudes, the opposite is true of the spicy, sweet, heavy perfumes. They don't go unnoticed and polarize just because of that. Anyone who wears a strong fragrance on broad shoulders and with unswerving nonchalance marks their presence in a way that is as emphatic as it is impressive. But watch out: all the musk on earth doesn't turn an anemic Don Quixote into a fiery Don Juan. So be honest when determining your fragrance type - for the sake of yourself and those around you.

Natural vs synthetic fragrances

Tart perfumes offer the gentleman a multitude of sporty, elegant alternatives that, depending on the mixture, go just as well with the youthful polo player (with citrus notes) as well as with the golfing Golden Ager (with spice, leather or wood notes). If in doubt, it is advisable to use the related. But preferable to more trivial woody-fresh notes. A taster tour through the spice rack can reveal whether you belong to the bitter type. Herbs such as rosemary, dill, tarragon or savory are just as popular in perfumery as they are in the kitchen. They even form the principal component of some large creations, even if the more exotic components are usually brought to the fore for the sake of marketing.

Although the perfumers largely orientate themselves towards the 300 or so natural fragrances available for men's fragrances, only a few of them can be found in most bottles. Instead, the far cheaper synthetic fragrances are used, of which there are over 5000. New ones are added every day, adding countless unusual notes to the range of fragrances. These are likely to be of secondary interest to the inclined reader - what gentleman wants to smell like gummy bears or a wet dog.

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