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  1. #181
    Pollux's Avatar
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    DWFII, in general, florals / gourmands notes are associated as femenine, and wood / spices as masculine.

    Reasons:

    1-. This is a consequence of a social construct

    1.a. Originally, scents were genderless
    1.b. Women used scents, most men did not
    1.c. Social changes motivated the usage of scents by part of men

    2. Changes in perfume styles

    2.a. As men started to use scents, perfumistas and specialized chemists had to make a choice regarding note-differences between scents marketed to men and those marketed to women

    2.b. As a result, the cosmetic industry set a pattern: they opted for florals in the case of those marketed to women and woody/spicy for those targetted to men - the question would be why did they choose this? Is this the point were social constructs are based in biological differences related to perceptions?

    2.c. In the last twenty years individuals started to pay less attention to social pressures. As a consequence, some men ignore connotations as per fashion choices, this including the usage of scents

    2.d. Perfumistas as well as industry professionals acknowledged this, meaning present-day blends marketed to men may include notes once considered femenine

    2.e. Plus the fact hobbyists know about this and are not afraid of using femenine scents when they think they deserve to be worn, for whatever personal reason (technical or non-technical)

    As JaimeB said on a post related to this issue, generations ago scent usage was not considerd an option for men, now it is not so for many. Let's face the fact, there are traditionally-driven men:

    - those who can't take the usage of scents marketed to women for whatever personal reason
    - those that use scents marketed to men, but reject flowery masculines or those that are not clearly perceived as such, even thought their labels state "for men"
    - those that regard the usage of scents as a lack of masculinity / virility

    Well, said this, I think every position deserves respect.

    Finally, an anecdote: a very close friend of mine and a wrestling buddy considers this hobby of mine as totally awkward thing as well as a sign of aeffeminacy. For him, using scents is limited to Old Spice deodorant. I went to his home some weeks ago, and found in his bathroom a vintage 100ml bottle of Dior's Fahrenheit. As I came out of the bathroom I asked him how old the bottle was, and expressed my surprise for, well, knowing him I knew he must have disliked the blend. Well, her wife wants him to use scents, so she gave it to him as a present. Of course, he never used it. I told him he could sell it at a good price, but he told me he keeps it for its sentimental value. He does not wear it, but sometimes sniffs the blend.

    Fragrance wearing has mnemonic value, and this means full wearings are not the only option.
    Last edited by Pollux; 2nd April 2010 at 03:30 PM. Reason: Typos

  2. #182

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I believe that when we discuss fragrances, we are discussing man-made fantasies. Each fragrance/fantasy is as intelligent or mundane as the ideas behind them. Being fantasies, they are open to interpretation.
    Some people like to live by rules, others don't.
    Live the Fantasy: Chanel No.5
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 3rd April 2010 at 08:26 PM.

  3. #183

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Pollux View Post

    Finally, an anecdote: a very close friend of mine and a wrestling buddy considers this hobby of mine as totally awkward thing as well as a sign of aeffeminacy. For him, using scents is limited to Old Spice deodorant. I went to his home some weeks ago, and found in his bathroom a vintage 100ml bottle of Dior's Fahrenheit. As I came out of the bathroom I asked him how old the bottle was, and expressed my surprise for, well, knowing him I knew he must have disliked the blend. Well, her wife wants him to use scents, so she gave it to him as a present. Of course, he never used it. I told him he could sell it at a good price, but he told me he keeps it for its sentimental value. He does not wear it, but sometimes sniffs the blend.

    Fragrance wearing has mnemonic value, and this means full wearings are not the only option.
    The use of scent today is an expression of grooming and hygiene for both men and women, nothing more one way or the other.

    My DH, a total non-perfume person, knows nothing of gender and scent or bottles and marketing. He only knows I smell nice and remarks on some of them, oblivious to the "gender" of the scent.
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  4. #184

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Xxxxxxx
    Last edited by mrclmind; 2nd April 2010 at 03:49 PM.

  5. #185

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I wonder if no fragrances were marketed toward a certain gender, what would happen? Maybe they would be worn more openly by both? I remember a thread once about the D&G series where some butch biker guy was walking around the store with L'Imperatrice, the most feminine of the so called "Unisex" series (Ironically, that is the one I own! teehee) Most people that ask me what I am wearing, if I happen to be wearing a "woman's" scent I tell them what it is and their reply is usually "....isn't that for women?" I usually reply with a simple, "I actually find it very unisex."
    I'm not your toy.

  6. #186

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    OK, my $0.02 worth.

    The human race would have died out long ago if individuals had no way of communicating gender to one another. We take gender sensibilities dead seriously (whether we're male, female, straight, gay, lesbian or trans) because we're biologically programmed this way. Its no wonder we're interested in the topic of gender whenever it comes up! Just as we inherit the tools for language learning, so also with culture learning abilities. 'Cultural conditioning' is biologically enabled at its deepest level IMHO.

    Are certain fragrance notes more masculine or feminine? It could be that a few notes somehow resemble human musks that we react to instinctively. But there must be many notes out there that are neither 'masculine' nor 'feminine'.

    Its when we reflect over our innate behavior - that we can (as many Basenoters do) move on to something resembling more of an art form. Perhaps some have even come to the conclusion that wearing fragrance isn't the best way, after all, of communicating gender (as important as it is) - so its not such a big deal whether one enjoys smelling roses or playing with wood.

    Growing up, I lived some years in Peru's amazonia. In the Yagua tribe, its still possible to see who 'wears the pants' and its obvious that even children take gender seriously.:



    (I found the photo here: http://www.traveladdicts.connectfree...eru/Amazon.htm)

  7. #187

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by rickbr View Post
    Yes, there are rules, but they only apply for those who wish to submit to these rules. They are not natural, you cannot proof scientifically those things. You can accept them, or you can be critical about it. It only depends on you wanting to stand out and think for yourself or following the crowd. Following the crowd is easier, but also automatic and boring two.
    I'd love to receive flowers by a woman, it'd shows that she commited to buy something different and took risks.
    I don't agree.
    If there are arbitrary rules that men and women blindly follow, then please show me the rule book.
    Especially with respect to the examples I've cited. And especially as that rule book would be flying in the face of all the gender neutral rules that have been pressed on the members of western society for the last thirty years.

    If a woman had ever showed up with a bunch of flowers for me, I'd instantly be thinking of the old Flintstones episode where Fred bought Wilma a bowling ball for her birthday (N.B. Wilma didn't go bowling, Fred did).
    Regards,
    Renato
    Last edited by Renato; 2nd April 2010 at 05:06 PM.

  8. #188

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    The poor horse has been dead a long time now.
    Last edited by mrclmind; 2nd April 2010 at 05:15 PM.

  9. #189

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    The poor horse has been dead a long time now.
    No! Don't let the horse die!

    I think pants (trousers) are masculine, and skirts (not kilts) are feminine! ____

  10. #190

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by vonMises View Post
    skirts (not kilts) are feminine! ____
    Not if you wear them with a wood based fougere... scent is the ultimate gender identifier.

  11. #191

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario Justiniani View Post

    Then it's hard to think of a man's fragrance a woman could not wear.
    Hi Mario,
    I know what you are saying, but try turning it around and ask which man's fragrance you think most women would happily wear? Do you get the same answer?

    As for Rita Rudner, I know the effect one woman had on me wearing Angel, and that another had on me wearing the women's Dune. I just can't imagine things working out the way they did if they'd been wearing say Cool Water for Men.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario Justiniani View Post
    Quorum to me is in the same category as Bandit for women
    I don't know what Bandit smells like.
    If it smells like the bottle of Quorum I bought 10 years ago, it must be pretty awful, and every woman who I've had sniff it has turned up her nose at it. The bottle of Quorum I bought last year, however, is a very tame affair compared to the earlier one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario Justiniani View Post
    I must say that I disagree with Renato on two points, though. I always craved an AK-47 over a Daisy BB gun, even as a child. (Well, it was de rigueur in Cuba ) And as far as camping--my idea of "roughing it" is a black and white TV or a martini without olives.
    AK-47 isn't very accurate, hurts your shoulder, is very noisy and you have to keep reloading it. Daisy BB is pretty accurate, is nice and gentle with hardly any recoil, is quiet, and you can pour 400 rounds into it and shoot to your heart's content.

    When I go camping, I always take my hand held colour TV with me, with a spare set of batteries. My days of "roughing it" are over too.
    Cheers,
    Renato
    Last edited by Renato; 2nd April 2010 at 05:37 PM.

  12. #192
    DWFII's Avatar
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Kinok View Post
    I wonder if no fragrances were marketed toward a certain gender, what would happen?
    I don't think much would change...people like me, who prefer certain notes, would still prefer those notes. People who wanted to thumb their noses at convention would still be waggling their fingers.

    Marketing is important but it is not the be-all and end-all of human desires...even if they would like to believe they are. Markets respond to demand. The fact that that demand may be artificial or manufactured or even transitory is often of no import to marketeers. And even when it is, it tends to lag behind the crest of the wave.

    But if the majority of people on this forum really and truly believed that it didn't matter, there would be no sub-forum for male fragrances...only "people fragrances." Frankly, thinking about it and comparing it to the responses we have gotten in this thread, I can't for the life of me see what function a male fragrances thread performs that couldn't be handled just as well with a gender neutral thread.

    Between "the let's-not-talk about-this" crowd and the "we're-too-evolved" contingent most discussions I've looked into in the male fragrance threads start aimlessly and end in equivocation.
    Last edited by DWFII; 2nd April 2010 at 05:39 PM.
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  13. #193

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    Between "the let's-not-talk about-this" crowd and the "we're-too-evolved" contingent most discussions I've looked into in the male fragrance threads start aimlessly and end in equivocation.
    I still maintain that it is all on a continuum... it's not as cut and dried as all that. I don't feel comfortable wearing l'air du temps, but I love, for instance, Hypnotic Poison, and I always get complements on my "Cologne" or "Aftershave" when I wear it.
    Last edited by mrclmind; 2nd April 2010 at 05:40 PM.

  14. #194

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    Brain Sex: The Real Difference Between Men and Women, Anne Moir, David Jessel

    Here's four pages or so by way of introduction...

    http://www.amazon.com/Brain-Sex-Diff...der_0385311834

    Finally rather than bore anyone further...
    I saw the six part TV documentary of that, and then read the follow up book which you cite.
    You have to be very careful reading it, because it both suggests and then demonstrate scientifically that men and women are different from each other, and that those are not learned differences but innate ones.

    If the authors had been solely males, they'd have been crucified.
    Cheers,
    Renato

  15. #195
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    ^+1000

    it both suggests and then demonstrate scientifically that men and women are different from each other, and that those are not learned differences but innate ones.

    If the authors had been solely males, they'd have been crucified.

    "A glass with you, sir"
    Last edited by DWFII; 2nd April 2010 at 05:58 PM.
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  16. #196

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I don't think anyone is questioning that there are innate differences between males and females (at least I'm not). What I have a disagreement with is that fragrance notes are absolutely inherently gender specific. This is just not the case. One of the most famous examples of gender ambiguity in commercial fragrance would have to be Stetson. It was considered to be one of the most macho things to wear (and still is in some circles). But the majority of fragrance experts agree that it is a very typical feminine floral/animalic chypre structure. They added a little hint of lavender on the top because that has become a "masculine" scent as of the mid 1930s. To smell it unlabeled, and unaware however, it would be virtually impossible for most people who are not familiar with the scent to identify it is an unquestionably masculine scent IMO. There are points at which gender labels are very appropriate in fragrance, no doubt. But to say that fragrances are unequivocally masculine or feminine is just not true. I'd love to get some actual double blind tests to support my hypothesis, that there is a vast cross section of perfumes marketed to men or women specifically that do not lie within strict gender biases other than their labels, and that these fragrances could easily be marketed to the opposite gender with absolutely no problems.
    Last edited by mrclmind; 2nd April 2010 at 06:21 PM.

  17. #197
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    I don't think anyone is questioning that there are innate differences between males and females (at least I'm not). What I have a disagreement with is that fragrance notes are inherently gender specific. This is just not the case. There are points at which gender labels are appropriate in fragrance, no doubt. But to say that fragrances are unequivocally masculine or feminine is just not true. I'd love to get some actual double blind tests to support my hypothesis, that there is a vast cross section of perfumes marketed to men or women specifically that do not lie within strict gender biases other than their labels.
    I don't know that fragrances...particularly marketed fragrances...are intrinsically male or female. But if we accept that there are real, demonstrable differences in gender...both physically and mentally...then it would be surprising if certain preferences associated with gender, weren't also real.

    Even the physical organization of the brain in men and women is different. The way our brains and bodies process hormones is different. It follows, then, that other chemicals that we come into contact would also be perceived differently.

    I think that gender preferences (like gender differences) are real...that they originate both in brain physiology and in a collective consciousness that has been with us for tens of thousands of years. They are a meme that we may never shake...even if we wanted to. And some of us don't.

    This doesn't have to devolve into stereotypes (although I'm not as afraid of stereotypes as some might be) because frankly...objectively...stereotypes are nothing more than everyday manifestations of deeper, more portentous archetypes.

    How do you plaster over an archetype?
    Last edited by DWFII; 2nd April 2010 at 06:26 PM.
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  18. #198

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    I don't know that fragrances...particularly marketed fragrances...are intrinsically male or female. But if we accept that there are real, demonstrable differences in gender...both physically and mentally...then it would be surprising if certain preferences associated with gender, weren't also real.

    Even the physical organization of the brain in men and women is different. The way our brains and bodies process hormones is different. It follows, then, that other chemicals that we come into contact would also be perceived differently.

    I think that gender preferences (like gender differences) are real...that they originate both in brain physiology and in a collective consciousness that has been with us for tens of thousands of years. They are a meme that we may never shake...even if we wanted to. And some of us don't.

    This doesn't have to devolve into stereotypes (although I'm not as afraid of stereotypes as some might be) because frankly...objectively...stereotypes are nothing more than everyday manifestations of deeper, more portentous archetypes.

    How do you plaster over an archetype?
    I don't think you understood my point... I'm fatigued again by this topic. I think we will just have to chalk it up to another impasse. With much respect to you and the other posters, I'm officially bowing out of this topic for good now.

  19. #199

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    I don't think much would change...people like me, who prefer certain notes, would still prefer those notes. People who wanted to thumb their noses at convention would still be waggling their fingers.
    I think you'll find everyone here "prefers certain notes" and purchases fragrances based on that. Some also buy based on bottle, others recommendations, and so forth, but it all comes down to what someone likes to smell like, and I don't think anyone here would argue with that.

    Where my personal disagreement comes in is with the notion that there is an inherent biological difference between men and women when it comes to preferring individual fragrance notes. There are obvious biological differences elsewhere, but I think this topic can only progress so far without some specific research into fragrance as it relates to gender, ideally testing a culture currently free of the concept of personal fragrance.

    So far I've seen nothing to indicate gender preferences in fragrances are more than a product of recent marketing.

  20. #200

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    I don't think much would change...people like me, who prefer certain notes, would still prefer those notes. People who wanted to thumb their noses at convention would still be waggling their fingers.

    Marketing is important but it is not the be-all and end-all of human desires...even if they would like to believe they are. Markets respond to demand. The fact that that demand may be artificial or manufactured or even transitory is often of no import to marketeers. And even when it is, it tends to lag behind the crest of the wave.

    But if the majority of people on this forum really and truly believed that it didn't matter, there would be no sub-forum for male fragrances...only "people fragrances." Frankly, thinking about it and comparing it to the responses we have gotten in this thread, I can't for the life of me see what function a male fragrances thread performs that couldn't be handled just as well with a gender neutral thread.

    Between "the let's-not-talk about-this" crowd and the "we're-too-evolved" contingent most discussions I've looked into in the male fragrance threads start aimlessly and end in equivocation.
    I could return that and point to people who make a thread here because they really want to speak out against "political correctness." You've got 92 posts here and tell us what an ineffective forum we have, with threads that start aimlessly and end in equivocation. I guess that must be right. Sorry it disappoints you so. You must be right after all, since words exist to distinguish masculine from feminine, and you must be right because a forum exists for men to talk about the fragrances they wear, hence the difference is certain and anchored in metaphysics. You must be right.

    Right too that I must like iris because I'm "politically correct" and "too evolved" and I "thumb [my nose] at convention." That's why I like iris, right. Or rose, or jasmin, or civet, or just plain applied fragrance in general, some might say.

    You want to fight your fearsome "political correctness" go away and do it. Don't come here and use fragrance use as a foil for your battle.
    That girl, that bottle, that mattress and me.

  21. #201

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    ^+1000




    "A glass with you, sir"
    Thanks.
    And thanks for raising this topic, and not being too concerned about being steam rolled.
    I'm sure that many people, be they either for or against the notion of genderless scents, would have found it instructive - or at least entertaining.
    Cheers,
    Renato

  22. #202
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Renato View Post
    Thanks.
    And thanks for raising this topic, and not being too concerned about being steam rolled.
    I'm sure that many people, be they either for or against the notion of genderless scents, would have found it instructive - or at least entertaining.
    Cheers,
    Renato
    No worries, mate. I've been steam-rolled by better minds and certainly more coherent ones...even if they do have more than 100 times the posts I do.
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  23. #203

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    No worries, mate. I've been steam-rolled by better minds and certainly more coherent ones...even if they do have more than 100 times the posts I do.
    I hope you are not including me in that comment... a disagreement does not equate to a steamroll

  24. #204
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    I hope you are not including me in that comment... a disagreement does not equate to a steamroll
    Not at all. I thought your remarks were earnest and cogent. Few people can have a real discussion (as opposed to prattling chit-chat) without disagreement...it's in the nature of people, being individuals, to have different points of view.

    Besides you don't have 100 times the number of posts that I do.
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  25. #205

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

    Besides you don't have 100 times the number of posts that I do.
    Damn straight!

  26. #206

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Sorry if this was already brought up. I didn't read all 100 replies. I think the problem is association. Let's say you wear a famous and much worn female fragrance or a fragrance with traditionally female notes, anyone around you will at least know one women wearing that scent/that note(s) and associate it as being a "female" scent. So for me, wearing a female frangrance, does'nt work, unless of course you absolutely don't care if your friends, workmates (or strangers) will find you smelling "feminine". I would never want that, even if I'm a pretty open minded fellow.

  27. #207

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I think that everyone has a valid point... there is an elephant in the room, and no one wants to just come out and say it, so here goes: The truth is that if you wear anything other than traditionally masculine fragrances, it will turn you gay. YES GAY! It has been proven time and again that people experimenting with things like tuberose, powdery scents and even gender neutral scents like rose have come up becoming full fledged gay men. Be very careful in these waters. As far as I can tell there is no way to reverse the condition.

  28. #208
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    I think that everyone has a valid point... there is an elephant in the room, and no one wants to just come out and say it, so here goes: The truth is that if you wear anything other than traditionally masculine fragrances, it will turn you gay. YES GAY! It has been proven time and again that people experimenting with things like tuberose, powdery scents and even gender neutral scents like rose have come up becoming full fledged gay men. Be very careful in these waters. As far as I can tell there is no way to reverse the condition.
    I knew it! I should have never tried on my mother's Jungle Gardenia.
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  29. #209
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Renato View Post
    I don't agree.

    If a woman had ever showed up with a bunch of flowers for me, I'd instantly be thinking of the old Flintstones episode where Fred bought Wilma a bowling ball for her birthday (N.B. Wilma didn't go bowling, Fred did).
    Regards,
    Renato
    I can see Fred, and others who live in the Stoneage, feeling that way.
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  30. #210
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    I think that everyone has a valid point... there is an elephant in the room, and no one wants to just come out and say it, so here goes: The truth is that if you wear anything other than traditionally masculine fragrances, it will turn you gay. YES GAY! It has been proven time and again that people experimenting with things like tuberose, powdery scents and even gender neutral scents like rose have come up becoming full fledged gay men. Be very careful in these waters. As far as I can tell there is no way to reverse the condition.
    Har har...quite the wit! But I think there's a misconception here....most of us who see these things a little more starkly, do so for different reasons than you may want to believe.

    Fragrance, like clothing...like a lot of things we "put on"...are choices. And as such, they tell stories about us as individuals. Some of those stories are even real representations of who we are...hiding beneath the facade.

    I suspect that there are some gay men who are overtly far more masculine than I am (maybe some women too) . I'm not particularly macho, nor am I a "man's man." I'm too old for all that crap. I am a man, however, and I think that I have preferences that I find are pretty common among other men...at least men who are not trying to "make a statement"...and fairly uncommon among women. As I said, earlier this is not...for me, at least...about sexual preferences.

    If I were to "overthink" the question, I might conclude that I don't florals because they seem "delicate" and sweet and a little "seasonal'--not "steady" as who should say. That's not an image I want to project.

    Wood, however, brings to mind trees--plants that seem to be there forever. That stand to the winds and gales of life. That can be relied upon to be there...short of cataclysm.

    And no offense (sincerely) but I think you do many of us a disservice to interject red herrings of this sort into the discussion. If it's a question of being uncomfortable with the subject ...or thinking too deeply about it...well, I can understand that. Otherwise it is not only not relevant, it's a false accusation.
    Last edited by DWFII; 3rd April 2010 at 03:22 PM.
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  31. #211

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    Har har...quite the wit! But I think there's a misconception here....most of us who see these things a little more starkly, do so for different reasons than you may want to believe.

    Fragrance, like clothing...like a lot of things we "put on"...are choices. And as such, they tell stories about us as individuals. Some of those stories are even real representations of who we are...hiding beneath the facade.

    I suspect that there are some gay men who are overtly far more masculine than I am (maybe some women too) . I'm not particularly macho, nor am I a "man's man." I'm too old for all that crap. I am a man, however, and I think that I have preferences that I find are pretty common among other men...at least men who are not trying to "make a statement"...and fairly uncommon among women. As I said, earlier this is not...for me, at least...about sexual preferences.

    If I were to "overthink" the question, I might conclude that I don't florals because they seem "delicate" and sweet and a little "seasonal'--not "steady" as who should say. That's not an image I want to project.

    Wood, however, brings to mind trees--plants that seem to be there forever. That stand to the winds and gales of life. That can be relied upon to be there...short of cataclysm.

    And no offense (sincerely) but I think you do many of us a disservice to interject red herrings of this sort into the discussion. If it's a question of being uncomfortable with the subject ...or thinking too deeply about it...well, I can understand that. Otherwise it is not only not relevant, it's a false accusation.
    It's called sarcasm.... We'll never see eye to eye on this topic, so I just was being humorous. Sorry if it offended you.
    Last edited by mrclmind; 3rd April 2010 at 04:28 PM.

  32. #212

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    It's called sarcasm.... We'll never see eye to eye on this topic, so I just was being humorous. Sorry if it offended you.
    Phew, thanks for clarifying that! Now I can keep wearing all my gay fragrances without worry!!

  33. #213

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by shamu1 View Post
    Phew, thanks for clarifying that! Now I can keep wearing all my gay fragrances without worry!!
    There has been a startling increase in the number of straight men wearing pearls, pumps and mini-skirts due to their experimentation with fragrances with feminine notes. It is not clear whether this is an indication of simple cross-dressing or if sexuality is also at stake. Surprisingly, the biggest offenders have been orientals with large amounts of vanilla, benzoin and jasmine (not tuberose and gardenia as was previously assumed, although these notes are still on the watch list). Research is still young in this field, but right now experts predict a world wide pandemic by the year 2013 if something radical isn't done. IFRA has begun restricting feminine notes and are suggesting that the police in all countries begin training dogs to sniff out these feminine notes so that arrests can be made by any men wearing them, thereby mitigating the escalation of the problem. It is very alarming, to say the least.

  34. #214

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    There has been a startling increase in the number of straight men wearing pearls, pumps and mini-skirts due to their experimentation with fragrances with feminine notes. It is not clear whether this is an indication of simple cross-dressing or if sexuality is also at stake. Surprisingly, the biggest offenders have been orientals with large amounts of vanilla, benzoin and jasmine (not tuberose and gardenia as was previously assumed, although these notes are still on the watch list). Research is still young in this field, but right now experts predict a world wide pandemic by the year 2013 if something radical isn't done. IFRA has begun restricting feminine notes and are suggesting that the police in all countries begin training dogs to sniff out these feminine notes so that arrests can be made by any men wearing them, thereby mitigating the escalation of the problem. It is very alarming, to say the least.

    I can hear the lynch mob banging at my door. I gotta bolt.

  35. #215
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mrclmind View Post
    It's called sarcasm.... We'll never see eye to eye on this topic, so I just was being humorous. Sorry if it offended you.
    No offense taken...I recognize sarcasm almost immediately when I see it. But I notice that a lot of "these" types of conversations (this one too) tend to start out serious and innocent (mostly) and end up in misunderstanding related to sexual preference. At 64 years old I tend to dismiss sexuality as having any long term relevance...or at least not be so obsessed with it that it has to enter into every issue, every minute of every day.

    On another note...

    To follow on a thought I was just beginning to explore in the previous post...and continuing to over-think...

    In my mind, and generalizing, men tend to want to project reliability and permanence--wood; the power of transformation--leather, whisky; or the elemental powers--smoke, fire, the ocean.

    I can't speak to what women want but if I were to guess I would say that women tend to prefer notes that express and project images that are 180 degrees.

    And that's why men like women...because they are not like ourselves...they are the "other." It's a matter of polarity.

    Yin yang.
    Last edited by DWFII; 3rd April 2010 at 05:21 PM.
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  36. #216

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    zzzzzzz
    Last edited by mrclmind; 3rd April 2010 at 05:24 PM.

  37. #217

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    ...it's in the nature of people, being individuals, to have different points of view.
    I thought we had already established that we don't have minds of our own. It's all just marketing

  38. #218
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    ^ See post #88. I don't know any circumstance where kibitzing is considered polite.
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  39. #219

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Gents, it's perfectly possible to have some version of this conversation without either a) generalizing about all men, or b) seeming to prescribe norms of masculinity. I think many of the responses to this thread have actually avoided both of these--for me, anyway--pitfalls. Taking the question as an occasion to reflect on ones own sense of masculinity is useful for me. No reason it should be useful or even comprehensible to everyone. Plenty of threads that elicit no response at all from me and I just don't contribute to them. My blessings on anyone who can point out sentimentality or slavishness in my sense of masculine elegance.
    The difficulty of this topic makes me think with some nostalgia of a different cultural moment when people were thought to have a 'private life' that was nobody's goshdarn bidniss. See ya'all citizens in the Agora.
    Last edited by Strollyourlobster; 3rd April 2010 at 06:25 PM.

  40. #220

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    ^ See post #88. I don't know any circumstance where kibitzing is considered polite.
    I don't know of any circumstances where it is considered polite to be so dismissive of another forum member's post.

    I was just trying to point out the absurdity of the idea that otherwise intelligent people somehow become slaves to advertising agencies when it comes to the issue of gender and perfumes. Of course marketing plays a role in reinforcing all kinds of stereotypes, but it doesn't mean that people can't independently come to the conclusion that something smells masculine or feminine, while others see no such distinction.
    Last edited by sean-dt; 3rd April 2010 at 08:15 PM.

  41. #221
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by sean-dt View Post
    I don't know of any circumstances where it is considered polite to be so dismissive of another forum member's post.
    You'll pardon me...but you quoted me. If you're gonna quote me, read me...that way you'll know what I said and what I believe.
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  42. #222

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by DWFII View Post
    You'll pardon me...but you quoted me. If you're gonna quote me, read me...that way you'll know what I said and what I believe.
    I did read your post. I thought it was clear from the tone of my post that I was being ironic, and I wasn't actually disagreeing with the part of your post that I quoted.

  43. #223

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Facepalm at this thread

  44. #224
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by sean-dt View Post
    I did read your post. I thought it was clear from the tone of my post that I was being ironic, and I wasn't actually disagreeing with the part of your post that I quoted.
    If that's the case, I apologize. I read it wrong. The internet doesn't let us hear tone of voice or see facial and bodily expressions.

    Again, my apologies.
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  45. #225

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I am too exhausted from reading to make a long response...but I have two brief things to say.

    First, gender conditioning is alive and well, not just in marketing. I noticed it when I was in school for physics/engineering, mostly among the students. The faculty, on the other hand, almost bent over backwards to keep women in the program. There is a widespread consensus that girls are "discouraged" against math and science from an early age, and there have been erudite studies on this topic. Some schools and workplaces are now trying to actively change that to be more diverse. Certainly this gender phenomenon applies to most other areas also (e.g., women do the cooking), all of which is culturally imposed. If women do the cooking, why are most of the top chefs men?

    Second--to anybody who says I should only be wearing "women's" fragrances--don't tell me what I can't do.

  46. #226
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Asha View Post
    I am too exhausted from reading to make a long response...but I have two brief things to say.

    First, gender conditioning is alive and well, not just in marketing. I noticed it when I was in school for physics/engineering, mostly among the students. The faculty, on the other hand, almost bent over backwards to keep women in the program. There is a widespread consensus that girls are "discouraged" against math and science from an early age, and there have been erudite studies on this topic. Some schools and workplaces are now trying to actively change that to be more diverse. Certainly this gender phenomenon applies to most other areas also (e.g., women do the cooking), all of which is culturally imposed. If women do the cooking, why are most of the top chefs men?

    Second--to anybody who says I should only be wearing "women's" fragrances--don't tell me what I can't do.
    Top chefs don't just cook, they also run the kitchen. And gender conditioning seems to make it easier for kitchen staff to take orders from a guy. Yeah, I know, but I don't make these 'rules'.

    As for this thread, the differences, whether 'real' or 'imagined' are here to stay. I say just wear any bl**dy scents you feel comfortable wearing. No need to preach to the unpreachable.
    Last edited by Diamondflame; 4th April 2010 at 03:16 PM.

  47. #227

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I am actually wondering, when a perfumer makes a fragrance, does he first chose the gender and work further from that decision or does he just compose some components untill he reaches a fragrance that is good to him?

    I do believe that fragrances are clearly male or female, why would there otherwise be such a consensus on for example Dior Homme and Fleur du Male that it's more female? Something in our nature seems to recognise that a fragrance smells either male or female.

    I have no problem with people breaking those "boundaries", but I am actually wondering if someone is smelling a fragrance on you that doesn't fit your gender, what that person will think of you. And yes, I know a lot of people on this forum don't care about that, but others do care a lot about that.

    The biggest issue I have with wearing female fragrances, is that a person can recognise it.
    I just don't want to imagine the embarassment when someone would ask me why I am wearing a female fragrance. Seriously.

    The fragrance hobby is not the most heterosexual of all hobbies, that's why people are cautious about it.

    I tested Gaultier² a long while ago and I got to say, I liked it a lot.
    I just couldn't get over the female aspects of it, so I didn't buy it.

  48. #228

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by JBL View Post
    I do believe that fragrances are clearly male or female, why would there otherwise be such a consensus on for example Dior Homme and Fleur du Male that it's more female? Something in our nature seems to recognise that a fragrance smells either male or female.

    I have no problem with people breaking those "boundaries", but I am actually wondering if someone is smelling a fragrance on you that doesn't fit your gender, what that person will think of you. And yes, I know a lot of people on this forum don't care about that, but others do care a lot about that.
    I agree that some fragrances are more on the feminine or masculine side, but I still don't feel that particular notes are. Soft, sweet, pretty, powdery, floral compositions are usually classified as more or less feminine, so this is where fragrances like Dior Homme comes in and confuses people.

    What puzzles me is how some men will only wear fragrances that say for men on the bottle, but don't mind at all (or even prefer) if the fragrance itself is a super girly powder puff of a fragrance. At the same time, they won't touch a butch chypre pour elle because it's a fragrance for women? The important thing here is clearly what it says on the bottle, not what the content smells like.


  49. #229

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by tott View Post
    I agree that some fragrances are more on the feminine or masculine side, but I still don't feel that particular notes are. Soft, sweet, pretty, powdery, floral compositions are usually classified as more or less feminine, so this is where fragrances like Dior Homme comes in and confuses people.

    What puzzles me is how some men will only wear fragrances that say for men on the bottle, but don't mind at all (or even prefer) if the fragrance itself is a super girly powder puff of a fragrance. At the same time, they won't touch a butch chypre pour elle because it's a fragrance for women? The important thing here is clearly what it says on the bottle, not what the content smells like.

    I agree. Some men and people in general are easy to influence. They think the gender of a fragrance is a science that is undeniable. As like the companies would hire scientists to chose this. If I test a fragrance that is labeled "for men", but I find it more female on my skin, I will simply not buy it.

  50. #230
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Posts 121 & 122 take this thread further away from the OP's intent but I, personally, don't think that we can or should try to dictate the direction a discussion can go, anymore than we can or should dictate what fragrances a person should wear--that's real tolerance.

    So...I would say this again...since time began women have been in charge of raising children--"the hand that rocks the cradle..." If people are being conditioned into gender roles to the extent implied, why haven't the very people with the most influence over young minds, inculcated their children to take another direction and to embrace another perspective?

    For the last 40,000 years gender roles have remained pretty static. And even in the face of people saying (whistling past the graveyard?) that it's finally changing I see no evidence that long term shifts in perception are really taking hold. This seems especially true when taken together with the amount of dissatisfaction being expressed regardless of any and all social restructuring. I suspect that the proportion of the population that is unsatisfied with gender roles is not significantly more nor less than it has always been. (although with the Internet and the media and the consequent societal self-absorption, we are undoubtedly more vociferous about it.)

    Why is that? Why, in this day and age, can a person say that gender conditioning is still going on...and not wonder at the underlying reasons that make that possible...without pointing a finger at someone else? Why is it that the "rules" still apply, especially in this society, when it is women who bequeath the basis for either accepting or respecting those rules to their offspring...of both sexes. Male children are not ripped from the embrace of their mothers in this society.

    I think JBL strikes a particularly sane note. And one that brings us back to the OP's original intent. Whether a person wears, or even prefers to wear fragrances that are marketed as masculine or feminine is beside the point. The idea that fragrances have no gender is probably, at least, technically correct...no one is really disputing that assertion. But if there are physiological and hormonal and even cognitive differences between the sexes that are observable and quantifiable then gender related preferences are not unimaginable.
    Last edited by DWFII; 4th April 2010 at 04:43 PM.
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  51. #231

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I've made this is exact point before on the boards, and I'll reiterate it on this thread. I'm not in a position to voice a strong opinion on the topic, because only recently has my mind begun to be opened to alternative modes of thinking regarding human nature (in large part due to various college courses on anthropology, and more recently on political science and Marx's theory regarding human nature). I'd like to join the party in support for "wearing what you want" and thumb my nose at the "manufactured" gender sensibilities. But I know for me personally, that I have finite boundaries, to which I feel comfortable/uncomfortable, when it comes to fragrance. I'm a black/white person, I function along a logical path, avoiding most philosophical debates. Yet I can't simply do that here. I DO, believe (and honestly find it hard for anyone to debate in the contrary) that there are quite profound differences, biologically, between males and females. BUT, now, more than ever before, I'm starting believe more and more in the effects that culture has on us. IMO, the vast majority of our personal identities are socially constructed, and for the time being, I believe this INCLUDES our individual theories on masculinity/femininity. The easiest point I can make in defense of this opinion, is how the conception of masculinity (or femininity) has evolved over the centuries, there is no way that human genetics has adapted along with the ever-changing societal conceptions of gender, it's simply not plausible.

    IMHO, the overwhelming majority (90%+) of how people will perceive the gender of a smell is derived from the bottle, color of the juice, name, and marketing angles. I don't think that the vast majority of people (even us BNers) can identify the intended gender of a fragrance from sillage alone. My mother is my go-to for fragrance opinions, because most others don't seem to give two shits. On MANY occasions, have I let her smell something that I found to be feminine, only to be told that it is "way too masculine for a woman to wear". Examples? Balmain Ambre Gris (listed as a feminine), L'Artisan Fleur de Liane (listed as a feminine), Tom Ford Black Orchid (listed as a feminine. AND, I got a cute girl at Sephora, to tell me when she smelled it, that it did indeed smell masculine, and she thinks it would be VERY sexy on her BF.), Serge Lutens Chergui (listed as unisex), Chanel Coromandel (listed as feminine), and the list continues.

    You see DWFII, if you define your gender lines so narrowly, practically EVERYTHING is going to smell feminine to your nose. Can't you, yourself see the holes in your own logic? The only reason you view the smells you do, as masculine, is because culture has taught you to associate, your particular line of work (leather), with the people that you have worked with (men). For no other biological reason, do you associate the smell of leather with men, than because you have been subconsciously indoctrinated to make that connection. In the absence of society, IMO, the lines between men and women would be so close as to become blurred. There is no debate, there are differences between men and women, but it is society that realizes and exploits those differences.
    Last edited by mtgprox05; 4th April 2010 at 09:12 PM.
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  52. #232

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Yes, male and female bodies have some different organs, hormones, etc. But are we not more than flesh and blood? If there is such a thing as a soul there probably is also such a thing as reincarnation. So, it's possible that we have lived in previous lives as different sexes. When I smell a fragrance that I like, I'm responding to it with my soul, not my testicles, which are above average in size.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 4th April 2010 at 11:07 PM.

  53. #233

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by mtgprox05 View Post
    I've made this is exact point before on the boards, and I'll reiterate it on this thread. I'm not in a position to voice a strong opinion on the topic, because only recently has my mind begun to be opened to alternative modes of thinking regarding human nature (in large part due to various college courses on anthropology, and more recently on political science and Marx's theory regarding human nature). I'd like to join the party in support for "wearing what you want" and thumb my nose at the "manufactured" gender sensibilities. But I know for me personally, that I have finite boundaries, to which I feel comfortable/uncomfortable, when it comes to fragrance. I'm a black/white person, I function along a logical path, avoiding most philosophical debates. Yet I can't simply do that here. I DO, believe (and honestly find it hard for anyone to debate in the contrary) that there are quite profound differences, biologically, between males and females. BUT, now, more than ever before, I'm starting believe more and more in the effects that culture has on us. IMO, the vast majority of our personal identities are socially constructed, and for the time being, I believe this INCLUDES our individual theories on masculinity/femininity. The easiest point I can make in defense of this opinion, is how the conception of masculinity (or femininity) has evolved over the centuries, there is no way that human genetics has adapted along with the ever-changing societal conceptions of gender, it's simply not plausible.

    IMHO, the overwhelming majority (90%+) of how people will perceive the gender of a smell is derived from the bottle, color of the juice, name, and marketing angles. I don't think that the vast majority of people (even us BNers) can identify the intended gender of a fragrance from sillage alone. My mother is my go-to for fragrance opinions, because most others don't seem to give two shits. On MANY occasions, have I let her smell something that I found to be feminine, only to be told that it is "way too masculine for a woman to wear". Examples? Balmain Ambre Gris (listed as a feminine), L'Artisan Fleur de Liane (listed as a feminine), Tom Ford Black Orchid (listed as a feminine. AND, I got a cute girl at Sephora, to tell me when she smelled it, that it did indeed smell masculine, and she thinks it would be VERY sexy on her BF.), Serge Lutens Chergui (listed as unisex), Chanel Coromandel (listed as feminine), and the list continues.

    You see DWFII, if you define your gender lines so narrowly, practically EVERYTHING is going to smell feminine to your nose. Can't you, yourself see the holes in your own logic? The only reason you view the smells you do, as masculine, is because culture has taught you to associate, your particular line of work (leather), with the people that you have worked with (men). For no other biological reason, do you associate the smell of leather with men, than because you have been subconsciously indoctrinated to make that connection. In the absence of society, IMO, the lines between men and women would be so close as to become blurred. There is no debate, there are differences between men and women, but it is society that realizes and exploits those differences.
    Upps, my HG is Coromandel, I own and wear Ambre Gris, and Cherqui...your mom would think I am a guy
    Having said that, yes, I do think there are masculine notes and fragrances that seem more towards one sex or another. But ovbviously, it is my opinion, and subjective to say the least.

  54. #234
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    I think the biggest problem I have with these remarks is this:

    Quote Originally Posted by mtgprox05 View Post
    The easiest point I can make in defense of this opinion, is how the conception of masculinity (or femininity) has evolved over the centuries, there is no way that human genetics has adapted along with the ever-changing societal conceptions of gender, it's simply not plausible.
    I don't see that our perceptions of masculinity or femininity has changed much if at all in 40,000 years. Some gender roles have shifted...slightly...and some expectations are expected. But I suspect most of it is wishful thinking. And flying in the face of evidence to the contrary.

    Beyond all that, you admit that you are currently under the powerful influence of indoctrination yourownself--if human beings are so vulnerable to culture and conditioning a logical person ought to be highly suspicious if not downright restive about finding themselves in such a position. And/or buying into ideas that aren't supported in real life. It's almost like the syndrome that describes the way in which a kidnap victim will begin to admire and even love the kidnapper.

    You see DWFII, if you define your gender lines so narrowly, practically EVERYTHING is going to smell feminine to your nose. Can't you, yourself see the holes in your own logic? The only reason you view the smells you do, as masculine, is because culture has taught you to associate, your particular line of work (leather), with the people that you have worked with (men). For no other biological reason, do you associate the smell of leather with men, than because you have been subconsciously indoctrinated to make that connection. In the absence of society, IMO, the lines between men and women would be so close as to become blurred. There is no debate, there are differences between men and women, but it is society that realizes and exploits those differences.
    As I asked earlier...what comes first--the hat or the cows? This is a culture/conditioning question. And the correct answer is still "it doesn't make any difference" You wouldn't entertain either if you weren't genetically inclined to become a rancher. We tend to gravitate towards those things--personalities., lifestyles, etc.--that we are most comfortable with (an ancient Oriental philosophy)

    Moreover, it occurs to me that not only is culture a genetic construct...arising from, and differentiating according to, disparate human gene pools...but it creates it's own self perpetuating system--memes. (it's all kind of beautifully fractal, isn't it?) Memes, like genes resist change...they are carriers of information--code, as who should say. Change it and you break it. The meme for male/female polarity/duality hasn't changed since homo sapiens sapiens walked out of Africa. I don't think wishful thinking is gonna do it.
    Last edited by DWFII; 5th April 2010 at 12:19 AM.
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  55. #235

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    DWFII: What is your favorite EdT?

  56. #236
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruggles View Post
    Yes, male and female bodies have some different organs, hormones, etc. But are we not more than flesh and blood? If there is such a thing as a soul there probably is also such a thing as reincarnation. So, it's possible that we have lived in previous lives as different sexes. When I smell a fragrance that I like, I'm responding to it with my soul, not my testicles, which are above average in size.
    Yes, we are more than flesh and blood...even if there is no evidence to support that proposition. But the discussion is not, never has been...at least not in my mind... whether we can rise above our natures (we can) nor even whether we are each unique and ineffably precious entities.

    There are, I daresay, many people who are physiologically male but "metaphysically" female (and vice versa). I would postulate that people who possess a feminine spirit/soul will gravitate towards "feminine" fragrances. I have no opinion on that--like the yin yang symbol, I would not be so disingenuous as to deny the small circle of white surrounded by black within myownself--but I suspect it is as it should be.

    But doesn't it beg the question? Having reached the point where one identifies his/her feminine/masculine soul...the fact that one then gravitates towards "counter-indicated" fragrances seem to give credence to the proposition that gender preferences are real.
    Last edited by DWFII; 5th April 2010 at 04:24 AM.
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  57. #237
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by StylinLA View Post
    DWFII: What is your favorite EdT?
    It's a toss up between Annick Goutal's Eau du Fier, Fumidus and a weird homemade blend of vintage English Leather and rectified birch tar. In that order. I also like Yatagan, Vintage Tabarome, modern Kolnisch Jucten and Or Black...in roughly that order....depending on the day.

    I tried Monk...looking for that "masonry" cement, stone, note that the reviews said was there. And I found it. But IMO it is overwhelmed by something that I do not know how to describe except it is too sweet or perhaps aethereal for me.

    .
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  58. #238

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Great. Wanted a break from all the philosophy lessons. Nice to see you like fragrances too.

    Vintage Tabarome rocks.

  59. #239
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    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Quote Originally Posted by StylinLA View Post
    Great. Wanted a break from all the philosophy lessons. Nice to see you like fragrances too.

    Vintage Tabarome rocks.
    You know, the fact is that I've been here a while...despite the low number of posts that some find unconscionable...but I mostly listen and absorb. I try to spend at least as much time learning as proselytizing or promoting my favourites.

    That said, I guess I would have to say I would rather discuss philosophy than read a bunch of posts arguing whether Creed is the best or the worst. It's disheartening to me...obviously an opinion that is not universally shared...to see people quibbling about whether Yatagan has a celery note or not. Or whether is is offensively dirty or sublimely elegant. The correct answer is that it's both...on me...and I like it that way.
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  60. #240

    Default Re: gender sensibilities

    Well, it IS a fragrance forum. You can consider me a shallow moron, but I enjoy this as a hobby. I have no qualms with most of the discussions that come up in here, but you have written the equivalent of a thesis in this one thread. I don't give a crap about your number of posts, but it seems like a ton of them are all in here.

    You're certainly free to continue as long as there are some who wish to debate you.

    I'm busy figuring out what kind of scent a rock climber might wear.

    Adios amigo.
    Last edited by StylinLA; 5th April 2010 at 01:08 AM.

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