Just as children’s toys should have no gender, neither should perfume. Ignore the boundaries created by marketing divisions and intrepidly adventure into the men’s fragrance section. It won’t disappoint - By Parizaad Khan Sethi
Have you been bored off late by the offerings in women’s perfumery? It’s overrun by blackcurrant. And tonka beans. But mainly blackcurrant. So. Much. Blackcurrant. There’s only one place left to go for a currant-free experience—the men’s section. But seriously, if you’ve never borrowed a boyfriend’s (or any other man’s) perfume, you’re missing out on 50% of what the fragrance world has to offer. They’re richer, laden with punchier ingredients like amber, tobacco and woods, and you’ll feel rebellious while wearing them. But fair warning: just like men’s watches or boyfriend jeans, it might get hard to go back to the women’s version. Here are a few to get you started.
CK One and CK2 Advertised as the first unisex scent, CK One was a burst of freshness in every way when launched in 1994. The bright, aquatic scent is a memorable way to recreate #ThrowbackThursday. Or trade up for the gender-neutral millennial version. CK2 is a woody-fresh scent with unusual notes like wasabi and wet cobblestones, but is surprisingly wearable, even to work. Wear it: When you want a pleasant but non-gendered juice
Davidoff Cool Water Eau De Toilette For Men
This one’s a throwback to the 80’s; a ‘dad’ scent, but in the very best way. Herbage of mint, lavender, coriander and rosemary are beefed up with musk, tobacco and woods. It’s a time machine in a perfume bottle.
Wear it: To the beach, ironically
Giorgio Armani Acqua Di Gio Pour Homme Eau De Toilette
This is a vacation on the Mediterranean, an appealingly sexy blend of bitter citrus, rosemary and salt, all baked to a perfect tan under the Sicilian sun. If you love the feminine version, its partner will not disappoint.
Wear it: When you’re dreaming of a holiday
L'Homme Yves Saint Laurent
This one has always been one of my enduring favourites on men, but it’s now inching towards my side of the dresser. Dreamy cedar and vetiver are spliced with refreshing bergamot and oceanic notes. It’s comforting and sensual all at once.
Wear it: To party till dawn
Givenchy Gentlemen Only
Completely ignore the name of this fragrance, and spray it on with abandon, no matter whether your chromosomes are XX or XY. Fresh mandarin is undercut by the richness of woods and incense, making it a refreshing yet sexy evening scent.
Wear it: For date night
is a beauty and wellness editor based in New York. She was the former beauty editor at Vogue India and now serves as a contributing editor for the magazine. At age 5, Parizaad fell in love with an old cream blush she found in the back of her mother’s drawer, and has been in awe of the transformative power of beauty ever since. When she’s not writing about beauty, she researches advances in skincare as a hobby, and is constantly guinea-pigging herself in the name of beauty.
Stay in the know! Sign up to Luxe Letters