Perfume Directory

Versace Man (2003)
by Versace

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Versace Man information

Year of Launch2003
GenderMasculine
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 290 votes)

People and companies

HouseVersace
PerfumerDomitille Bertier
SupplierIFF
PackagingTino Valentinitsch
PackagingDonatella Versace
Parent CompanyEuroitalia
Parent Company at launchGiver Profumi

About Versace Man

The first masculine Versace scent to be overseen by Donatella.

Versace Man fragrance notes

Reviews of Versace Man

Versace Man has greatly moved up in my estimation since first sampling it. This is an unofficial sequel to The Dreamer, giving us The Dreamer's elder self with a bit more age and introspection. Here, the Dreamer has moved on from smoking cigarettes outside of Miami nightclubs to smoking cigars during lazy afternoons.

It's smooth as silk, with a shadowy tobacco-amber blend that is rich without displaying any hint of jagged edges, and a green, grape-y edge that gives it a fresh, dewy quality. The ambiance is perfectly expressed by the purple bottle.

Tragically discontinued, but it does lean mature and restrained in a way that doesn't sit well with the more exuberant public image of Versace today, unlike The Dreamer.
02nd April, 2020 (last edited: 02nd May, 2020)
Ordered a sample of this one because others have said it reminds them of grape Swishers. Sounded lovely to me. The grape is there but I don't get much of it. It’s a pretty good sweet and ambery tobacco. Pleasant and definitely worth a try if that sounds like your jam. But it didn't wow me.
27th June, 2019
A truly magnificent, underrated outing from Versace!

Versace Man really pleases with that opulent tobacco and scintillating herbal saffron. Mmm! Cardamom and pepper make me an instant sucker for this and many other men's colognes.

A nice blend of spices, florals, tobacco, amber, and wood. Although it came out only a decade and a half ago, Versace Man feels like a relic from an earlier era which is still easy to sport today. Great casual occasion scent that seems to work better in cooler temperatures, and overall a decent cologne for most of today's men.

08th December, 2018
Versace had a troubled time as a house after the slaying of Gianni Versace, and it's perfectly understandable. Donatella Versace stepped up from her Vice President role to share managerial duties with her brother Santo Versace, the latter of whom handled the men's lines, and abolished the Versus fragrance sub-label she had run prior to Gianni's death (given to her by Gianni because she loved perfume). The women's lines, perfume included, continued to do well, but Santo didn't really have much of a nose for fragrances like his sister, so the men's fragrance lines became a lot of show, but no go. Several flankers to the "Jeans" line came and went, the bizzare freshie Versace V/S (2000), gaudily-packaged boring musk that was Versace Jeans Couture Man (2002) alongside yet another freshie in Versace Time for Action (2002), showcased a house that didn't really know what men wanted. To be fair, the early 2000's was a strange time. Retro-revival styles sat alongside licorice and caramel gourmands, ultra-modern experimental Iso E Super bombs or radioactive grapefruit ozonics with club-friendly ambery musk bases, contributing more to the tribal division of vintage, niche, and mainstream camps amongst male fragrance buyers that started fleeing to their corners with the boring-as-Hell "fresh revolution" and "Beige Age" of the 90's, meaning nobody knew where the male market really was going after crowd-pleasing aquatics started running their course. Donatella took position as chief designer and became hands-on with the men's perfume lines as well, launching Versace Man (2003) as a do-over of sorts after all the fabulous missteps. Versace Time for Action and it's flankers would continue a while, but everything outside the primary male lines Gianni himself once oversaw were dropped in favor of Donatella's new aesthetic, which was even more "stereotypically Versace" than before. Versace Man wasn't the savior in the male sector Versace hoped it to be, and indeed a great many men don't even realize this exists, as the flanker Versace Man Eau Fraichê (2006) would completely overshadow Versace Man like Drakkar Noir (1982) did to the original Drakkar (1972), but in much less time.

I feel Versace Man is just so strange that it was doomed from the start, outside of the initial early adopters upon the scent's release or Versace home turf. Versace Man is a quirky semi-oriental/semi-gourmand amber and woods fragrance with a light tobacco in it's base which keeps it from becoming too rich or sweet due to it's synthetics. Domitille Michalon composed this, and is also responsible for the orange creamsicle that was Hugo Boss Boss In Motion (2002), but taking Versace Man in an even more peculiar direction by having a synthetic approach to recreating the smell of... wait for it... grape leaves. This isn't a note very palatable to tastes outside Europe, with the US market, which was the most conspicuous consumers of Versace at the time, being blindsided, even though Versace Man fared well in Europe. Versace Man accomplishes it's odd task of being a synthetic grape leaves scent by using aromachems with a top note intro of neroli, bergamot, black pepper, and angelica, which itself rarely appears in a masculine. Sillage is deceptively low at this stage so don't be tempted to apply more, since Versace Man has a round middle that sneaks up after 15 minutes. Cardamom and saffron do some brief talking before the sweeter meats of the scent take over. A tobacco leaf note similar to Versace The Dreamer (1996) arrives, but a composite amber, Iso E Super "cashmeran woods" note and labdanum submerges it, pulling Versace Man in a supple, androgynous, and apologetic direction started by Chanel Allure Homme (1999) that would be best done in the 2000's among the men's segment by Yves Saint Laurent L'Homme (2006). Versace Man then becomes a tobacco-dusted semi-oriental take on the "Iso E Super Sweet Cologne" fad that dominated before the ambroxan bombs of the 2010's. Sadly, the obtuse grape leaves opening takes this endeavor too far left of mainstream appeal. Longevity is decent for a day, but this is too playful for a work scent, and too quiet for a play scent, plus A lot of things in this vein would be dropped when the second wave of aquatics started hitting in the latter half of the 2000's. Sillage is moderate once Versace Man opens up, but it's definitely no shining star like Eros (2013), although I do remember smelling this a lot on guys in the mid-2000's not knowing what it was, so it saw a brief flurry of use.

Noses in American and Asian markets reasonably gravitated towards the more-conventional Eau Fraichê, which sort of became the unofficial Versace Man pillar in those markets once sales of this one sharply sloughed off. Retro-chic heavy-hitters like Rive Gauche Pour Homme (2003) and Gucci Pour Homme (2002) held the attention of mature guys, and the youth were still busy rolling in super-fruity ozonics, so Versace Man had a very limited target of the pre-recession post-college career millenial who wanted a Calvin Klein Obsession for Men (1986) but with an effeminate style which appealed to his own generation. I do like the smell of grape leaves, having experienced them plenty in food, and for those who haven't, they might get an unshakeable impression of grape Swisher sweets or Dutch Master cigarillos (matching the bottle color) for just a few moments before the rest of the semi-oriental/semi-gourmand bouquet kicks into gear. There isn't enough tobacco to make this a choice for a tobacco scent lover, but anyone that likes the fruity-sweet understated vibe of this era's "metrosexual" fragrance trend will find little fault in Versace Man for trying to augment it with a heavier base, which in modern times gives it decent transgender and unisex flexibility. Availability of this in stores evaporated after Versace Pour Homme (2008) created a new male flagship line to replace Versace Man, while Eau Fraichê lived on, but stock can still be found at discounters, eBay or mom and pop shops. No official discontinuation news exists for this, but Versace Man just fell through the cracks so there's virtually no mention nor demand for it these days, making it inadvertently cult in status, even confusing some into thinking it's a flanker of Eau Fraichê and not the other way around. A vexing acquired taste of a scent, but far more original than most male-marketed 21st-century Versace output, Versace Man is the furthest from being blind-buy worthy, and then only explored by people interested in the dark horses of the oft-maligned 2000's. Thumbs up from me, but with the caveat that I find the scent more entertaining for personal reasons than something truly noteworthy for someone looking to reviews for solid recommendations.
15th October, 2018 (last edited: 20th August, 2019)
Two words : "Underrated Masterpiece"
19th November, 2017
Soft and sweet tobacco scent that has a subtle grape note that matches the color of the bottle.

This is one of those very versatile scents that doesn't excel or stand out in any one thing but is good for many occasions.

I definitely get the sweet, florally tobacco that reminds me of Dreamer throughout, but I also noticed the citrusy bergamot in the opening. The drydown is more an emphasis on the creamy amber notes.

Projection is okay for the first hour but then it softens to a close-quarters scent only.
23rd May, 2017

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