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Musk for Men (1983)
by Avon

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Musk for Men information

Year of Launch1983
GenderMasculine
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 14 votes)

People and companies

HouseAvon

About Musk for Men

Musk for Men is a masculine fragrance by Avon. The scent was launched in 1983

Reviews of Musk for Men

This was a pretty good musk fragrance by Avon.

On the old red lettering/copper-ish top of the 1980's I'd call this a "leathery musk". Smooth and semi-clean from a little citrus with a trace of barbershop powder. The heart of this fragrance is leather and provides a dark and warm tone. There's green element to this that's kind of piney yet crossed with a little sweet mint leaf. A good amount of musk rounds all this off.

The late 1990's formula:
This does smell like the old formula, but no where as dark because it's a lot lighter in leather. Doing this brought a little more of the clean/fresh to the design of the old formula. In fact the same green element does stand out more in this change and I catch a little patchouli. To me this is equally as musky as the 80's version.

Avon Musk for Men is my favorite of the musk genre in either the 80's or 90's formula. The fragrance design itself was just unique all on it's own.
11th June, 2018 (last edited: 18th April, 2020)
I didn't typically climb back further than the early 2000's for Avon, because I found the company had a general lack of interest in making wearable scents for men between the mid 80's until the 2000's when they went all-in on the idea of a men's division for the first time since the 60's. That doesn't mean there aren't some nice hits among all the misses littering the male side of the 80's Avon catalog, and this proves it for sure, but it's just dangerously boring and tedious roads to travel in order to find it. I guess that makes me glad I stumbled across this by accident. Just like Oland and Tai Winds from the early 70's, Avon had a few successes outside Black Suede (which is still made) in the early 80's, and Avon Musk for Men is one of them. Like most male fragrance tropes Avon chooses to jump on, the musk trope was already starting to become passe by the early 80's, as these potent, dark, rich, powdery juices with their heavy animalic bases were the epitome of overbearing "cologne men" in the 70's when these things raged. The aromatic fougeres also making their rounds at this time were actually lighter alternatives, and even they seem heavy by modern standards, but that's where the late-comer Avon Musk for Men breaks the mold. In a nutshell, this is a musk composed like an aromatic fougere, and might be confused for one if not for the rigid musk component in the base of it.

One has to realize that Avon released this a decade after Jovan Musk made waves alongside Coty Musk (which chased it around a year later as a softer alternative), so while Avon is always a bit late to the party with popular masculine tropes, they were really, really, really late with this one. Furthermore, it was Avon to boot, so folks couldn't just get it at the drugstore like the other two; Avon Musk for Men had to be peddled by the wife, mom, sister aunt, or whomever was the resident Avon Lady of the family, making it infinitely less convenient to order in an age before point-and-click shopping. The name of this gets around in circles of guys who ended up being gifted lots of Avon in their time, but few others mention it. It's quite a shame too, because Avon actually took the good parts from the other two mainstream musks it riffs and removed what didn't work so much, simplifying and blending in that beautifully frugal-yet-elegant way Avon does (when they're on their A-game) to make something effective and pleasurably wearable. Avon's take on the "go-getter" cologne doesn't quite scream "I wanna take you home tonight" like it's predecessors, but it does project the same warm and inviting aura as them, just without the prescient bite of virility. It has something of a slight piney afterglow, and wears close to the skin like most Avon products from this period unless doused on clothing that won't absorb it like the body. It's a far more woodsy, herbal, and "brown" kind of smell than most stiffly powder-infused musks, and holds up a ton better to a bit of heat without going rank.

All told, it's sort of the ultimate conclusion for this trope, before the white musks, light musks, blue musks, green musks, and "insert declawing note here" musks started showing up in an attempt to make a musk less musky (which seems pointless). It's been revived several times over the years, but like most Avon products that don't sell hand over foot, it's been long discontinued, but with enough vintage stock from multiple production runs to make it easy to find, and relatively affordable. Try to get the 1983 original release with brown cap as I find it better blended and more subtle than the later aromachemical remix that is black cap version. As with any old-style musk, do not wear this in high heat or to a business engagement, for even as the most civilized of standard musks, it's still outrageously masculine and burly compared to modern fragrances, like most aromatic stuff from this time.
27th August, 2017 (last edited: 10th November, 2019)
By far my favorite musk fragrance. Simple and perfect. Better than all the niche musks I've tried (I'm looking at you TF and Montale). A beautiful creamy sweet and slightly woody musk. I have the original Monsieur Houbigant Musk, and I love it, but I even prefer Avon to that. Sometimes perfection can be simple and inexpensive, though not often enough. This is the exception. Get the vintage, it's worth the trouble, and people are letting it go at ridiculously cheap prices if you look hard enough.
20th December, 2011
Rossi46 Show all reviews
United Kingdom
I absolutely love this musk. I haven't tried Kiehl's but I do prefer Avon to the very excellent Jovan musk. to me it's altogether warmer and I like the slightly piney accords that have been pointed out in other reviews.

As you can pick up Avon musk for such ridiculously low prices (as with a lot of excellent Avon products), I think it's an absolute steal!
01st March, 2011
This review is for the original version. The current Avon Musk is a reformulation and is not as dark or rich (and is a different colour), but it's still not bad. As with many an Avon release, Musk (the original) was incredibly under-rated and under-appreciated and also spectacular value for money, given the number of true musk ingredients that it was made with (the reformulation is, I think, entirely synthetic). Very animalic with lots of mossy and smoky accords and there's also a distinct powdery addition that follows from top to bottom to avoid that frequent danger of musks - fecal and uriney notes - and, for once, the sweet powder works. But it should be noted that it wasn't a bright and fresh musk like The Body Shop's offering. No, this was very definitely a brooding, masculine musk that punched way above its weight class, but was ignored and forgotten thanks to the Avon name, the plain box and unimaginitive bottle. A classic.
05th May, 2010
Musk? Yes. Oddly foresty and pineconey. Other than that, rather ok. Decent musk.
06th September, 2009

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