Men’s fragrance is surely the most common gift, particularly from sons and daughters stumped by what to get dad for Christmas.
Before you decide to visit a mall and walk up to any of those fragrance counters with pushy sales clerks, here are a few tips and tricks to help you pick what you wanted in the first place.
1. They’re All the Same, Eh? Think Again
With more than tens of hundreds of products coming out in a year, a majority of them would be just the same and, moreover, they wouldn’t last much. Although it is hard to differentiate between most of them, you can certainly find something that is tailored to your taste. Remember, real luxury is to get a feeling that something is just made for you.
Tip: Avoid wearing a deodorant for the day. Wearing a strong cologne or deodorant will surely make it even harder for you to tell the difference between any of those colognes.
2. It’s in the Materials
Fragrance is just like wine- it’s a sensation, it’s a great smell, and it’s a joy.
Look around for the bottles that are pleasing to the eye, and maybe try them out one by one. Before figuring out what the top and base notes are in the thing, just sample its scent. How do you feel?
Go for a brand that uses finest raw materials, and then, most importantly, go with your instinct.
Tip: Choose a classic cologne that’s lasted for many years or go for the one that has a fairly short list of ingredients. If you’re hesitant about wearing cologne, you can go for something that’s fresh and recognizable like lavender, fig or citrus, but not too complicated.
3. Look for Something Special
Many fragrance makers spend a boatload of money on brand building, celebrity endorsements in order to sell their stuff to you. But the hallmark of real quality is in a brand that uses natural products.
Before you lean toward any of those designer brands out there, look for special perfumers that specialize in just one thing- make a perfume of the finest quality.
4. Put it to the Test
Your skin’s chemistry (oils and natural lubes) interact with that of your perfume and could cause a change in the original scent that comes straight out of the bottle.
Put it on your skin and test. In general, oily skin may have a tendency to trap fragrances, while dry skin might require a few more sprays to help you get through the day.
Tip: Ask the salesperson for a take-home sample so you can see how your skin oils change the scent of the perfume. Not only will your nose need a reset after all that whiff-all-the-stuff-in-the-shop-in-thirty-minutes, it also allows all these samples to evolve. Trust me, lots of perfumes and colognes do.
5. Hit the Right Spots
Try to hit those areas of the body where the blood vessels are pretty much closer to the surface of your skin. It also helps a bit in warming your skin so the chemical (alcohol) in your perfume can evaporate into thin air.
Some good areas of the body are the pulse points at your neck and wrists, the spot behind your ears, and, if you don’t bother putting it lower, the ankles.
Tip: Fragrance, in general, has a tendency to rise so when you dab some on your ankles, they tend to linger a bit longer.
6. Bring Someone with You
It helps to bring someone you trust when shopping for men’s fragrances, especially a woman.
Sounds weird? Fragrance is considered a reliable way to connect with another person, and, is a good seduction tool.
It seems women have a better sense of smell than men and, sadly, that sense deteriorates as you age.
Tip: Next time you’re checking out the fragrance section of a department store, bring a woman with you. Odds are, she might be able to pick up those subtle hints that you won’t get.
Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be sure to make it through the parade of salespersons wielding spritzers and test trips.
Remember, you’re not here to pick a perfume that will please your pal or your girlfriend. You’re here to pick one that your dad will be contented with. Factor in your dad’s preferences if he has any and you’ll not be spending too much time wondering what to get my dad for Christmas.