Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Holy, Mother! Part I: Angel for Men (A*Men) (1996)

Well, only 5 more days until we honor the spirit of spending, I mean, the spirit of Mom. Just picture the women around the country who will be simultaneously spraying bottles of perfume bought for them by their adoring families. And then think of how many of those will sit unused, month after month, year after year, just waiting, longing to be sprayed, collecting dust. Ah well...such is the price paid for trying to guess something so personal as another person's taste in fragrance.

Anyhow, in the spirit of Mother's Day, I'll recap my 5 favorite fragrances worn by the one, the only, the mother of yours truly, Mom.

#5) This is a scent that Mom loved in the late 90's. Though the female counterpart was quickly becoming a retail phenomenon, the men's scent was just gaining speed.

Angel for Men

Notes: Bergamot, Lavender, Coriander, Peppermint, Patchouli, Atlas Cedar, Coffee, Styrax, Tonka, Musk.

Pros: Startlingly original and amusing with an amazing array of notes; the standouts here are the patchouli and the coffee, softened and accented by a sweet powdery musk. Nowhere to be found are marine, ozonic, citrus or floral notes - this is all woods, spices and musk.

Cons: Definitely not run-of-the-mill, this is a love it or hate it scent with few opinions between. The patchouli may be too much for some.

Reminds me of: Hard to compare, but in the same category, perhaps Rochas Man, Yohji Homme, L'Artisan L'Eau du Navigateur, MPG Eau des Iles, Dior Homme.

Where can I buy it? $32.75 for a 50ml edt spray tester at

The Bottom Line: One of the most unusual men's fragrances of the last 10 years, I believe I gave up my first bottle to Mom because she commented every time I wore it just how great it smelled. Let's not even get into the psychology of sharing a scent with Mom, but, hey, she liked it, I worked in fragrance, let's keep it simple. Anyhow, partial to powdery orientals, Mom smelled great and it was amazing how the aroma changed with her skin. Nowadays, her husband wears it and again, I gave up the bottle. Though I don't often reach for it anymore, hence the 2nd giving, I think of it fondly.

Rating (out of 10): 9

Has your mom ever worn a men's scent?


castorpollux said...

Mommy Dearest wouldn't wear a man's scent even if her dear life depended on it!, well now seriously she has never used one but i have never asked her why or if it were the case that she liked one would she wear it so nothin' interesting to say here; she has used unisex scents at least. Oh and she wears from time to time Paloma Picasso's Pour femme, wich to me smells like a man's aftershave anyways so that might be a case of misinformation or better yet mislabeling!...I love AMen by the way, it has a nice bitter chocolate note i like...

marlen said...

Picasso! I can't understand that one...

zsm said...

I can't understand Paloma Picasso, either, especially because it turns nasty on my Mom's skin. But, then again, most chypres do.

On the other hand, Angel Men is one of my fave scents, if not my all-time favorite. To me, it strongly resembles the smell of Cedar Point, my fave amusement park (in Sandusky, Ohio). That smell brings back memories.

marlen said...

wow, the scent of an amusement park - great association!

Anonymous said...

I don't know if my mom has worn a man's scent, but I have (and I'm a woman!) For many years, I loved 4711 cologne. From what I remember, I discovered it when I was in the Army, stationed in Germany. I would buy it at the local PX (Post Exchange) in Mannheim, Germany. It was sold in the woman's fragrance section of the store, so of course I assumed it was a strictly female scent. I loved the fact that I was living in Germany and wearing a scent that was made in Germany. And I loved the clean, citrusy smell. At Christmas time, then, (this was from 1978 to 1981) the company came out with a cute little gift with purchase. One year it was a cute wooden sleigh with a bottle of 4711. So I decorated my apartment with that wooden sleigh at Xmas times after that. I haven't seen 4711 do that anymore. Maybe that was something they only did in Germany, and selling their product to the PX's in Germany. So it was with quite alot of shock that I discovered 4711 being sold in the men's fragrance section, years later. I thought "What the hell! Am I wearing a guy's fragrance? Then I found out that it was unisex. Whoo!!! Thank goodness! Dodged that bullet! (Smile!) So I guess that unisex doesn't really count as wearing a man's fragrance.
Then I discovered the website or blog or whatever you call it "bois de jasmin" and all the neat links. That has helped me alot with fragrances. So far, I'm just a lurker. I did read somewhere the NY Times article "Scent of a Woman?" about women who wear men's fragrances. I think Grey Flannel was mentioned. Lo and behold, I found a tiny bottle of Grey Flannel at CVS and bought it. I knew that it had lavender and violet in it. Love Lavender. Love Violet. It was such a cute, tiny bottle. I thought, How can I go wrong? Well, YUCK! I'll probably give it to my brother --
I also have a tiny bottle of CK One edt. Cute bottle - It's 15 ml. Bought that at CVS and keep it in the office. It's okay. It's growing on me. Getting to be more likeable.
I haven't bought any 4711 in years, but each time I smell it, I get nostalgic for Germany. My husband and I went to Germany just a few months after our marriage. We were newlyweds having a great time, discovering a new country. We stayed for 3 years and brought home to the USA our daughter who was born at the tail-end of our "illustrious military careers". I do have some 4711 shower gel. Nice stuff.

marlen said...

checkout my review of Grey Flannel over at NowSmellThis:

Marlen's Grey Flannel Review

Shannon said...

As you may know, I adore Angel. But I'm really fond of A*men too. I love to wear them together, one spritz (just one!) of A*men in the cleavage, and regular Angel everywhere else! shhhh! now you know my secret!!!