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  1. #181
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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 elegance is possible without it...perfume is a part of you." Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel
    Currently wearing: Infusion d'Iris by Prada

  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
    Renato's Avatar
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    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
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    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
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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
    Renato's Avatar
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    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
    DWFII's Avatar
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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
    DWFII's Avatar
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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
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    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
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    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
    Renato's Avatar
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    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

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    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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    By Sanzio in forum Male Fragrance Discussion
    Replies: 31
    Last Post: 30th September 2005, 08:57 AM

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Loving perfume on the Internet since 2000