The men's version of Contradiction just comes off as CK's answer to Kenzo's Jungle - a woody, peppery nutmeg with a splash of citrus on top. The problem with CK's take is that it just smells fake. It is a decent composition in itself, but while there are several other firms producing the same scent only better, there just seems little cause to own Contradiction. This is also one of the rare and sad instances in which the fragrance in question smells markedly worse on my skin than on paper. Excellent bottle, though.
Inoffensive spicy citrus woody cologne.
I take no offense at this. It is not awful, it is simply pleasant. No award winner this, but not to be dismissed out of hand.
I have experienced dozens of Calvin Klein scents and been impressed only by his first, named after himself and difficult to find these days, being discontinued.
One never hears about a Contradiction for Women, but the man's version is no more clever, nor worse than say a Jovan or similar drugstore men's scent.
The citrus is light, the spices are light, the wood is light. Best probably as an after shave splash for the man who wants to smell like something, but is not really into scent himself.
So disgusting...worst Calvin Klein scent EVER. Can't even describe the scent. A dumpster of hell filled with grass? idk, but yecch!
For me, Contradiction for Men has always been one of the several epitomes of “insignificance in a bottle”. But the main flaw here is not even the uncreative dullness, which is still perfectly acceptable as not all audiences need creative stuff; rather the quite evident cheap quality of the fragrance itself. Not tragically cheap, but quite cheap for me. Basically this is a fresh, office/gym/club-safe citrus-woody-musk fragrance playing some modern chords on a traditional “eau de cologne” scheme, with a slight balminess and a painful similarity to a window detergent, sitting halfway smelling “almost pleasantly natural” and “annoyingly synthetic” – far enough from both qualities though, sitting in the exact nonsense middle between them. Neither an “avantgarde synthetic fragrance” (which may likely smell crap, but that would be post-modernly “ironic”), surely nor a particular true to life and natural one. Just exactly the worst type of mall/drugstore fragrance trying to emulate some sort of natural notes with really cheap materials. Which makes Contradiction almost a bit tacky, as it does not show even some slight sort of generic understated cleanliness. It is actually rather bold on the contrary; that would be a plus, if the smell was nice. And quality aside, the fragrance isn’t still worthy any attention for me, as I find this just plain dull and indistinguishable from dozens of others – likely better – lemon-woody-musk fragrances. Perfectly interchangeable with any of them, and chances are for the better. I am a big fan of designer fragrances so this is not really a matter of being mainstream, just plain negligible regardless of the label.
Genre: Woody Oriental
Contradiction for Men’s atrocious “lime” top note smells more like green Kool Aid than lime. It’s also so loud and persistent that calling it a “top note” feels slightly disingenuous. If the note were a color, it would be the electric acid yellow-green used in pedestrian crossing signs. If it were a sound, it might be the Macarena. It’s the kind of garish thing I’d expect in a crass, fruity floral celebrity scent for teenage girls, rather than a designer masculine.
The fruit doesn’t really fade during the first couple of hours. (Maybe it has to smell this bad in order to last so long.) Instead it is only partially masked by a wood and sweet spice accord that includes black pepper, nutmeg and cardamom. The combination might have been appetizing in theory, but in execution it’s more “cacophony” than “contradiction.” The harsh fruit, the unrelenting sweetness, and the hard edges on the spices add up to a abrasive, discordant composition that’s extremely uncomfortable on my nose. The best commendation I can offer is that after a couple of hours’ wear, it’s no longer overly loud.
Four or five hours in, and Contradiction fades off into a drydown of clean musk and what smells like a sandalwood reconstruction. As a skin scent this drydown isn’t bad, but it’s not particularly interesting either. Not something I need to experience very often.