Sorry, my original post was just too long and giving even me a headache, so I split it into two posts to make it easier to read...
Originally Posted by emad
by the way herb lady you didn't tell where are you from and about culture of your country fragrance in detail
After reading your post about how fragrance is used by men and women in Iran, I realize how different things are here in the West. Â*I live outside of New York City and as such, we really have almost everything here because of NYC. Â*In the City you'll find large stores filled with designer fragrances, small or specialty boutiques with niche scents, and smaller perfumeries and apothecary shops that will sell oils or you can create your own. Â*Because this is New York, we have people from all over the world and all over the United States visiting and living and working here. Â*So we have a total mix of everything, which makes it very interesting to see, but that doesn't always mean that you really have the inside information about various cultural or religious practices regarding issues such as fragrance. Â*New Yorkers tend to respect people's privacy, which is why so many celebrities like living here. Â*Â*
Men in NYC are usually comfortable wearing fragrance, because NYC tends to be very cosmopolitan. Â*People dress up more than they do in the suburbs, but of course this is true for most any large international city. Â*But because it's the fashion capital of the United States, trends can come and go very quickly here. Â*Some people (men and women) get very caught up in what's new, what's trendy, what can I wear that no one else has yet? Â*Or they enjoy wearing something that most people, except for a very few sophisticated or knowledgeable people, can't recognize, whether it's fragrance or new designer. Â* There is sometimes a snob factor involved with those who feel compelled to have a "secret" fragrance that no one else can recognize, and the name of which they'll never reveal. Â*Others will tell you the name instantly just so that you think more highly of their taste or how much money they've spent on it (idiotic and insecure). Â*Obviously, not all New Yorkers are like this - it's just one small aspect of the population. Â*And interestingly enough, some of the people who act this way are new transplants to NYC, who seem to get caught up in the whole thing. Â*And it goes without saying that once many people start wearing or adopting a certain new thing, the trend is over very, very fast - often before it becomes popular in the rest of the USA. Â*However, I find that this is usually more true with women's trends - especially fashion ones. Â*I don't know which fragrances are currently the most popular, but I'll ask around and report back. Â*Â*
There is a certain type of man known as a Metrosexual, which means that he lives in a metropolitan area, is heterosexual, but also is very interested in personal grooming - clothing, hair, nails, skincare, fragrances and things like facials and physical massages. Â*The term has caught on with men who are becoming more interested in their appearance, and are overcoming any insecurities they've had concerning their masculinity and grooming rituals more commonly associated with women. Â*
Conservative bankers on Wall Street wear conservative scents. Â*Those in the fashion industry or theater district wear more artistic ones. Â*Power lawyers and CEO's wear scents they think exude power. Â*We generally don't have the same social hierarchy here that exist in many other countries, and so many if not most Americans tend to identify highly with their jobs/professions, because they feel it explains who you are. Â*This is not necessarily a good thing, just what is common. Â*Americans tend to work long hours, and in some places, such as the New York metropolitan area, the length of the workday can be extremely long. Â*We don't receive long vacations, or an entire month off during the summer, etc., so again, jobs here often (but not always) explain a lot about a person. Â*Fragrance choices are very often dictated by profession. Â*A physician may choose not to wear any, so that he or she doesn't trigger any allergies in patients, etc. Â*
Most men I know wear either aftershave/aftershave balm, or a cologne of some type. Â*Most don't wear oils, unless they're really into a create-it-yourself sort of thing. Â*Very few men here take baths - Americans predominately take showers, so men rarely, if ever, use bath oils, but some use scented shower gels or body scrubs. Â* Some women do take more baths than showers, but it's often for relaxation purposes. Â*Some people use incense to scent their homes, but it's more common to find scented candles here. Â*
But if you take a short drive outside of New York City, everything changes. Â*While there are still many men who wear fragrance, wear designer clothes, etc., you'll also find many men who don't. Â*Either they just don't care about fashion or fragrances, or they still have insecurities about their masculinity. Â*Or they don't know much about the topics and don't know how to proceed. Â*So they tend to dress however they think women want them to dress, or however they think they need to dress to attract a woman. Â*The same goes for fragrances (and that's if they wear them at all). Â*And older men tend to be much more conservative regarding fragrances, because for them, a man really didn't do much more than shower, shave, comb his hair, dress, put on his wristwatch and wedding band and walk out the door each morning (no jewelry, no fragrances). Â*There are stories (I don't know if they're apocryphal) about the jewelers, Tiffany & Co., never making diamond rings for men, because it was thought to be vulgar for a man to wear one. Â*
My husband and brothers are in between - some wear fragrances, some don't, but only because they forget to put them on; they're not part of their daily lifestyle. Â*If they do wear fragrances they might own one to three different scents to choose from, depending upon the occasion. Â*But men don't carry fragrance with them and reapply it during the day. Â*If they're interested, they might keep a bottle in their office or only apply it at home. Â*Sports are very popular with men and especially this generation (playing and watching), so anything considered rugged is also popular.
Younger men (our teenage nephews) seem to be more interested in fragrances and don't have as many of the hangups that older men have, nor do they think that an interest in your appearance means that you are effeminate. Â* Also, I think that rap music and hip-hop culture have also made some younger men more comfortable with designer clothes, jewelry and fragrances, because they're popular items with so many artists in that music genre. Â*I see many more young guys today shopping for clothes and fragrances than ever before. Â*It's no longer just girls, so I think this is something that will change with successive generations.
Originally Posted by Magnifiscent
Indeed interesting posts folks!!!
In particular emad post made me think about how the use of pefume (above all oils) in ancient cultures was related to religion (I'm ignorant about islam, but just think of how many times oils and perfumes are cited in the bibble) or how in acient greece perfumed oils were used by fighters during olimpic games (it was more related to religion than sport at that time and they used different oils according to which god the games were held in honour of).
This made me reflect of how things are changed, specially reading the numerous "which frag turns chicks on?" threads: seems like in moders cultures perfume have become mainly related to sex.
I would be scared to think about the hypothesis that for many people sex is their new deity of nowadays... :-?
Lastly, whether I think fragrance today is really only worn by people because of sex, well, I think fragrance today is more about what image people wish to project and how fragrance makes them feel (uplifted, calm, refreshed, sexy, rich, invincible). Â*For some, like I said, it's about power, or status, expressing their creativity, but for others, especially many younger men and women (and sadly, far too many older ones too), I think it's about sex AND youth. Â*They seem to go hand in hand nowadays, the thought that you can't be sexy or attractive without being young. Â*I've noticed a number of posts on this site about whether certain scents are too "old" for some ages, and I smile, because I remember thinking as a child that I merely wasn't sophisticated enough to wear some of my mother's perfumes (and when would I be secure enough to be able to pull them off?), but never did I regard those classic scents as "old". Â*They just had to suit me and work with my personal chemistry. Â*And yet I see reviews in the directory about something being "an old lady fragrance" or matronly (or "old man scent"
, and feel sad for those who feel this way because, does this mean that when they reach 30 or 35 or 45 or 60, will they think that no one will ever find them attractive again? Â*And what does that do to their self-esteem now? Besides, whatever you're wearing today, your kids will one day think is "old".
Let's keep hearing from others around the world about fragrance in their culture. Â*