Perfume Directory

Paradox for Men Blue (1999)
by Jacomo

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Paradox for Men Blue information

Year of Launch1999
GenderMasculine
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 21 votes)

People and companies

HouseJacomo
PerfumerChristine Nagel
Parent CompanySarbec

About Paradox for Men Blue

Originally known as Paradox, without the 'Blue'. The 'Blue' was added after the launch of Paradox Green in 2003

Paradox for Men Blue fragrance notes

Reviews of Paradox for Men Blue

Jacomo Paradox for Men (1999) came a year after the original feminine Jacomo Paradox (1998), which was itself nothing short of a calone and rose fruit salad nightmare that most women run from after first sniff. One might rightfully expect the male version to not fare much better in that regard, and such a supposition wouldn't be entirely incorrect, although the base really saves this enough that I actually end up liking the fragrance in spite of its faults. There is also a big nostalgia factor here for me personally, but more on that later. We're all allowed our guilty pleasures and this is one of mine. Jacomo had ended a triad of smoky fire-themed fragrances for men which started with Eau Cendrée (1974), ran through Jacomo de Jacomo (1980), and finished with Anthracite Pour L'Homme (1991). Their next few steps would then be to do something different, something unlike their past masculine releases. We next saw Ambro (1996), which became something of a cult hit for being a men's amber at a time when fresh and clean was en vogue, but that commercial failure would eventually become a unicorn for collectors to give chase, and has gotten some posthumous respect for that reason. Paradox for Men, like it's feminine sibling, fully embraces 90's melon-derived calone for a sweet fruity fresh and nearly-unisex scent that, although a bit late to the party in 1999, was not quite passe enough to be dismissed. The turn of the millennium was an interesting time for men's fragrance, with gourmands on the heels of Mugler's A*Men (1996) trying to cash in on a new craze, giving us stuff like Rochas Man (1999), Givenchy Pi (1999) and Yohji Homme (1999). Polite but richer alternatives to freshies like Salvatore Ferragamo Pour Homme (1999) and Chanel Allure Homme (1999) also existed to add a little more heft to a wardrobe otherwise woefully bereft of sillage, and if that wasn't enough, ozonics were cutting the air alongside a revival of green aromatics. Paradox for Men both fits into this last-minute diversification of masculine perfume, yet also doesn't because it relies on the conventions of the decade's earlier half, which may be part of the paradox it claims to represent.

What Paradox for Men ends up being is far from what it is supposed to be and also not exactly what it appears to be based on the oceanic color and clear packaging. The overall gist of Jacomo Paradox for Men is unbelievably as a light oriental chypre hybrid using then-modern fruity fresh elements in the composition. Christine Nagel did an admirable job trying to achieve this end in her pre-Hermès days as a perfumer for hire, but what she landed upon was really nothing of the sort, even if this does contain the chypre prerequisite oakmoss in the base. Paradox for Men opens fruity fresh like one might expect for a fragrance stuffed with calone and several fruit notes, but there is no aquatic dihydromyrcenol here, no shampoo-like galoxide, and no salty notes. Instead, the scent switches gears into a peppery light musk punctuated with vetiver, sandalwood, and a lightly sweet vanilla alongside that moss. I guess the chypre accord is there if you really want to search for it, but what I get from Paradox for Men is basically a fruity semi-oriental abstract freshie that really defies easy classification. Tangelo, mandarin, Kaffir lime, and sharp basil start us off, which then leads into a really interesting cardamon-dusted mango accord with a "blue cedar" Iso E Super woods note, but the calone has reached us by then to spit-shine all the fruit notes into a glazed-over smile. This calone-infused midsection is where most vintage guys jump ship on wearing Paradox, but staying the course reveals that aforementioned oakmoss, vetiver, and sandalwood drying things up enough for the pepper and white musk molecule to work their subtle magic. No, this isn't breathtaking by any measure and it sure sits squarely in the ranks of forgettable 90's fresh fare, but Paradox for Men is just a slightly off-kilter enough approach to a 90's freshie that folks who knew what it was back in 1999 (like me) will still remember it decades after. Wear time is about 8 hours of mild sillage, as this is no barnstormer, and probably best used as a personal enjoyment casual summer fragrance since the semi-oriental elements aren't strong enough to penetrate cold air.

Collectors into the wild and wacky world of Jacomo will probably love this more for the bottle than the smell inside, and if you're generally a fan of this house, then here's the one freshie from them you can use while staying within the brand portfolio. I couldn't recommend this to anyone new to the hobby and I certainly wouldn't expect anyone to pay a pretty penny for this, as it is likely one of the least-memorable smells for men released in 1999 in the wake of all the other decade-capping scents trying to set new trends for the coming century. Paco Rabanne would take the basic ideas from Paradox for Men and improve upon the complexity and performance with the Jacques Cavallier-penned Ultraviolet Man (2001), which was another release that has a cool bottle and competent but somewhat hum-drum scent unable to turn heads like the packaging. I'll give Paradox for Men a thumbs up for being a respectable first step away from the heavy and dark masculine releases Jacomo had become known for up until that point, but in the greater scheme of things, Jacomo wouldn't hit their stride to this effect until the release of Aura for Men (2000) the following year. My stake in this is purely to rectify my poor decision of passing this up 20 years prior because I thought the difficult-to-spray squat bottle and plexiglass box it came in looked too silly, despite actually liking the fragrance. Now here I am struggling to apply it and reminding myself how my tastes have changed away from these juvenile diversions, but enjoying every minute of the "fruit salad" overload on my trip down memory lane anyway because it's still a far cry better than the overbearingly sweet "fruitchoulis" of the 21st century. Not one of Jacomo's best, this quirky fresh blue juice done "the Jacomo way" is nonetheless charming, if only because the bark from its strange packaging is way worse than its bite and the peppery woodsy musky base is the payoff. Only seek this if you're a die-hard Jacomo fan that wants to complete the house, or you went to high school in the late 90's and also need that reminder of how silly and boring our old faves really were.
07th January, 2019
I used to have a bottle of Paradox for Men Blue, a scent I bought just on the strength of my admiration for the Jacomo label. Alas, I entered a period in my scentaholism a decade ago where I opted to sell back many of the colognes that were just sitting around unused.

Paradox was for me a light, sweet, but not altogether "gotta keep it" cologne. One reviewer adroitly calls the sweet opening as inky, which I believe is a direct result of mixing basil with tangelo orange and kaffir lime (the so-called "green combava" note). Although there is exotic purple mangosteen present in the mix, overall Paradox doesn't come across as special, only a fragrane with varying levels of sweetness over time that fades too quickly.

In the end, Paradox was simply not that interesting enough for me to say, "THIS one I should keep."
23rd August, 2018
Tony T Show all reviews
United States
solid light oriental

jus like ultraviolet minus the longevity. amber/vanilla/musk opening and drydown. very linear. if you can get it at a good price go for it. I might sell mine..

Pros: decent sillage
Cons: copy of ultraviolet"

24th July, 2013
I've tried this a couple of times now and it just doesn't do it for me. I have this problem with a lot of Jacomo fragrances, even the semi-classic Jacomo de Jacomo in the black bottle. In fact, this one is kind of a light, warm weather version of J de J. Intellectually, this one is interesting...I sense it's trying to do a bit more than your usual fragrance du jour...but I have no idea what that is.
This house produces stuff that's always interesting, but never anything that grabs you and makes you want to wear it all the time. At least that's my experience. For a well known house, they really don't have much in the way of "all time classic".
14th May, 2011
Different, and distinctive is Paradox Blue. I have tried a handful from the house of Jacomo, and have not been disappointed once.

Paradox Blue opens up with a deep and almost dark, inky, minty, green/citrus accord. As it dries, it becomes less intense, stays pretty linear, adds a bit of cardamom, and incorporates some light woodsy notes, as well as musk once it dries down.

A rather hard scent to describe in words, though it certainly fits these terms: citrus, dark, blue, inky, green, dewy, wet, minty/menthol, distinctive.

A must try for any fragrance lover. It's cheap, and a safe blind buy if you enjoy trying new and different things, that challenge your nose. It is quite versatile, and can also be worn in cold weather, which is awesome for a citrus fragrance. Although I would not recommend blind buying this fragrance if you are a noob. Because it is so complex.

As a personal note. I have the .17 oz mini bottle. I dab it on my arms every now and then, and it projects pretty well, and lasts long. I find though, if I were to wear this too often, I would not like it, because of its complexity, and being some what unorthodox.
08th April, 2011
This smells like a summer version of Corduroy. The more I wear it the better it gets and it's not a WOW! scent, but it's versatile and pleasant. This is my 4th Jacomo fragrance and I'm really impressed at the quality and versatility of their fragrances. What I have noticed is that most of their fragrances have good sillage, but stay closer to the skin. Jacomo makes some impressive fragrances and as always their price is exceptional. I'd give this one a B overall.
08th March, 2011 (last edited: 25th July, 2011)

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Paradox BLUE Jacomo for Men 1.7oz edt spray non cellophaned COLLECTORS

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Paradox BLUE Jacomo for women 1.7oz edt spray NIB (101167)

$49.00
End Date: Thursday Apr-11-2019 11:18:14 PDT
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