Perfume Pen Pals: The Smell of a Man's Taint



Dan,

I got this message on my YouTube channel:
"I currently wear Hermes' Un Jardin en Méditerranée, which I adore for the indolics. I describe it as diabetic urine. I'm looking for another heavy indolic. I want something that smells like a man's taint after a long day on the construction site. Suggestions?"
Katie



Katie,

First, I don't quite understand getting diabetic urine or indolics from Un Jardin en Méditerranée. That's what often trips me up about these requests: people will say the perfumes they like and what they like to smell, and what they like to smell is never similar to the perfumes they like. And I keep going back to Frédéric Malle and his reference to people being honest with themselves about what they like.

Second, who would've thought this perfume project would expose you to terms like "man's taint"? Jesus.

Playing along, the ultimate "man's taint" perfume was the original The Different Company Rose Poivrée. It still has a little of that, but it also has lots of rose, which completely kills any construction-site imagery this fellow is trying to achieve. (He must be a fellow, right?)

The right perfume for the job ensures workplace safety.


What will you suggest?

Dan



Dan,

The first thing that comes to mind is a fragrance I've only encountered in the perfume purgatory that is Heathrow Terminal 3 Duty Free: Givenchy Gentleman.


Givenchy "Gentleman" is anything but. He's got a distinctly personal pong borne aloft by vetiver, patchouli and leather. It's TMI to the max, and I love it.

Katie


You know what's coming, fumies. Please submit the most realistic male nook'n'cranny fragrance suggestions. We won't discuss your fact-checking procedures.

64 comments:

  1. YSL Kouros makes me want to rut.

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    1. After I committed to Givenchy Gentleman, Kouros strode into the center of the room and bellowed, "Thanks a pantload for forgetting about me!"

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  2. Lol.....why on earth would ANYONE want a fragrance to smell like the taint of a sweaty, overheated man ? You'd be better served to have a soccer team rub their ass on you after a practice.

    Another suggestion would be to have Etat Libre d'Orange do a bespoke fragrance for you.

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    1. Haha, there's a certain sector who wouldn't mind being better served in just the way you described.

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    2. Ah yes....the butt people. lol.....There's just no satisfying them when it comes to fragrances.

      Out of all the scent that I have worn over the years, the most ill fitting and urinous I can recall was Magazine Street. I don't mind edgy, but this was an immediate scrubber on me. I cannot say that I have ever come across one ( designer or niche ) that genuinely smells like taint. I'm also not mad about that either........

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  3. Of all fragrances, Ellena's clean gardens? But I'm not familiar with diabetic smells. For the regular variety of urine, I concur with Luca Turin and suggest Dior Jules, unfortunately available only to French perfumistas.

    cacio

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    1. Yeah, I know what you mean - Ellena's fragrances don't sing that particular song to me, either.

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  4. Onda by Vero Kern
    Complex by Boadicea The Victorious

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    1. I'm with you re Onda. Not familiar with the other one.

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    2. Anther one that may be of interest is Eau de Kiki by Christophe Laudamiel for Kiki Smith. It's inspired by Cat's Pee and Plant Sex.

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    3. Even plants are getting in on the raunchy perfume action.

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  5. It doesn't do the "magic" for me, but you should revisit MKK and see if you get the infamous buttcrack sweat smell...

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  6. Sonoma Scent Studio TABAC AUREA

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  7. I'd recommend just getting a builder in, so to speak.

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  8. Mona Di Orio's Orio, I believe, is one that makes me think "sweat"

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  9. Sometimes, I think these people are lying poseurs.

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  10. As a Perfumer, I'll suggest a custom fragrance: Aldron at 10% (Smells like sweaty man), isovaleraldehyde at 2% (watch out when you uncork the bottle though...), para-cresyl caprylate at 5%, Rabbitbrush EO at 10%, Animalid musk at 15%, and a particularly fecal oud sample I got from a supplier that smells just like a barnyard at 10%, some new ambergris, that hasn't aged properly, and smells like a mixture of vomit and stuff from the other end, and a little real civet too. Round out the balance with Iso E Super, and you've got the winner...

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    1. Paul, can't believe you're sharing trade secrets! I'm kind of nervous to ask what the other chemicals smell like...

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    2. Paul.....I'm imagining what your suggested combinations would actually smell like....and all I can come up with is my old neighborhood in Kensington, North Philly. If there was gentle breezes blowing, you could get whiffs of stale piss fermenting on brick walls, hints of feet and vomit with the occasional aroma of unwashed ass. Maybe this person should just take a 3 day vacation and go there. I do recommend being fully armed however.....

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  11. I've never smelled a diabetic's urine, but I hear it has a sweet smell, so maybe it does smell like Un Jardin en Méditerranée. I don't know what that has to do with either indoles or taint though. Indoles don't smell like taint OR urine. If he wants a taint smell, he's looking for animalics (musk, civet, etc.)

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    1. Sounds like this fellow might benefit from a PowerPoint presentation reviewing the salient details of a gentleman's undercarriage. In fact, I'd like to attend as well.

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    2. I bet Chandler Burr would be happy to give that talk.

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    3. Yes, I do remember some infamous line from his book about the smell of something, er, intact.

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    4. "We smell indoles all day, especially when we crap. Fecal matter is filled with indoles." Luca Turin, as quoted by Chandler Burr. Boo-yah.

      -Philip

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  12. Mona Di Oiro's Les Nombres d’Or Cuir is my pick. On first contact it's not much, but within minutes it warms to the smell of well-used men's tools. It's a sweaty leather perfume that I find fascinating despite not being a big fan of the style.

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    1. "despite not being a big fan of the style." Spoken like a true connoisseur!

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  13. I thought Heeley's Cuir Pleine Fleur was sweaty leather pants. L'Artisan Al Oudh has a lot of armpit.

    I read that Tom Ford called his Black Orchid the "smell of a man's crotch"? It was a scrubber for me, but after I scrubbed, I was left with a nice vanilla.

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    1. Smell-wise, Black Orchid would have to be a particularly flamboyantly bedazzled man's crotch what with all the cucumbery-pineapply-chocolately insanity.

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  14. Bright Angel Katie:

    Dismiss all these comments!!!~ The fragrance is: Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan!!!~ Honey, I ordered this cologne from luckyscent.com without getting a sample first. When it was delivered to me, I immediately sprayed this stuff on and my face went into an instant "flush" and I got hot all over. This stuff is vulgar. It put me into dimensions I didn't even know existed. Whew….. However, like a freak, I wore it to work and people would just stare at me in shock. This fragrance TOTALLY fulfills the request at the top of this comment section. If you folks have not tried this, please - - get a sample first. It is WILD!!!~ I have never smelled anything like it. Here are some comments from people who have tried it. You cannot make this stuff up!!!~ For me, it honestly left me speechless and I have no idea how in the world to describe this scent. Katie, please forgive me for the blatant honesty in these reviews, but I have to prove a point. You know, I would be MUCH MORE classier than these comments. They come right off the luckyscent.com website. Oh, well - Here goes with the comments:

    No. 1: Thrilled that this storied, incomparable fragrance has FINALLY been made available Stateside. This is the animalic to end all animalics. For sheer, jaw-dropping mammalian muskiness, not even KIEHL'S MUSK or Malle's MUSC RAVAGEUR can compete. Beeswax and Costus root blend with a musk that is.... undeniably human and undeniably masculine. Picture: the used cotton t-shirt of the hunkiest, most virile 22-year-old auto-mechanic you can imagine. This fragrance operates on an almost subliminal level, low sillage, and you will not believe its naked declaration. Musk lovers may have found their Holy Grail. [My comment inserted here: Sillage means: it is French for "wake" as in the stream left behind a boat.]

    No. 2: Smells like my cab driver last night and a little like my balls after a day of partying.

    No. 3: I have to say, this one on me is rank stank. It smells like wet groundhog. Not that I know what that smells like but, I can imagine. I am going to try it again because A. I LOVE Serge Lutens (all of them so far besides this) and B. All of you people cannot be wrong. I need to be in a different mindset. I was so thinking that I would smell like crotch that I was not open to the possibilities. Not sure which is worse, crotch or wet vermin. Anyway, will try it again.

    No. 4: If ever there were a scent that smelled like Bigfoot's penis, this would be IT.

    And finally – No. 5: I've been waiting to review this. I'll be blunt, this was a sweet pleasant, erotic surprise for me. It smells like slobbery roses... sweet, beyond sweet, erotic skin smell. The DryDown smells of PURE civet grease, which has this.... sweet yet faintly metallic Pear Skin, Anise vibe, with a notable fecal tone, like.. as I say, after trying to wipe with a single-ply tissue.. I'm saving this for special occasions. It's a mood fragrance. As I describe it... If I washed my mouth out with Rose water.. and then slobbered on a crotch, let it dry a bit and then sniff.... that's what MKK is. This is one.. DIRTY animal, and ah love eeet!!

    End of Comments. It is ENDLESS - You get the picture.

    Go ahead, Ms. Katie - Tell me I am right on........... This review column is a SCREAM!!!~ I was just kidding, please do not remove anyone's review. They are all BRILLIANT. I can't stop laughing.

    Love ya, madly - - Byron.........

    [side bar]: I think it freaked Dan out, too……… He really makes me laugh. Geeezzz, is he funny. Love it!!!!!~

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    1. Haha, thanks for compiling these comments. And your remark: "it put me into dimensions I didn't even know existed" is funny and positively cosmic.

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  15. Sabrina: Now I feel like an idiot. I'm sorry. You already mentioned MKK!!!~ YOU WIN!!!!!!~

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    1. With MKK, everyone's a winner.

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    2. Please, don't be... I loved what you posted and when I mentioned that MKK "doesn't do the magic" for me, it was because I am aware of the colorful reviews, but it doesn't smell nasty at all on me. I may be one of the lucky 0.0009% that find this perfume quite pleasant. But I don't wera it that often, afraid that other people might think I stink:)

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    3. Dear Sabrina: This is Byron. THANK YOU for being so gracious and kind. I guess I scrolled to fast through the comments before I had realized you had left your comment which I happen to agree with you 100% concerning the MKK scent. I just have NO idea what it smells like on me because people will not say a thing at work or when I am meandering through public spaces. After I had used a whole bottle, I, too, was really concerned that people had thought I was skanky or sleazy. I experienced it once and that was enough for me. Aren't Katie's responses BRILLIANT!!~ Have a GREAT DAY!!!~

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    4. Hi Byron,

      MKK is all "fluffy pink bunnies" on me (at least to my nose). My husband doesn't complain either, but currently I wear this one only at home. On the other hand, UJEM really smells like "diabetic urine" on me (and now I say "NOT in a pleasant way"). Sometimes I think I may have a weird skin chemistry, other times I think this skin chemistry thing is BS... in doubt, I really avoid MKK when I will be around other people. Have a great day too!!!

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  16. I'm thinking of two by Smell Bent: Commando and Werewolf Lumberjack.

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    1. Smell Bent: putting the "bent" in "smell".

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  17. Despite what is written, I think this person simply wants a woody masculine with a bit of a tang. Givenchy gentleman is certainly in that territory, but I would also recommend French Lover, Equipage, and Terre de Hermes as a modern version of these. But my immediate suggestion is Antaeus: it may be Chanel, but as a personality in a bottle it smells like a man who puts HP sauce on his toast.

    The request has made me realise that anyone of twenty years of so would have been born at the anti-fragrance moment and what passes as shockingly zoological or masculine and aggressive in the context of contemporary, high street fragrance may not be so for those whose memories extend even a little bit further back, and whose experience goes beyond what is prominent on the high street.

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    1. "a man who puts HP sauce on his toast": separating the men from the boys.

      I suspect you're right in thinking that despite the taint talk, this person would be satisfied with woody tang. You've made some great suggestions.

      And yes, context is everything. The more the youngsters develop their palates, the more they can handle: from espresso to stinky cheese to "bottom heavy" fragrances.

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  18. MFK's Absolue pour le Soir is even more animalic than MKK in my opinion but I think Gavin Lambert is right. In which case I wanna recommend another Ellena: Declaration

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  19. I love it very much but Le Labo Rose 31 comes to mind
    cheers, Cybele

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  20. sigh... I used to love a "woody masculine with a bit of tang", but these days I just have to settle for a good perfume.....

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  21. And there's me thinking the worst thing that could happen if you walk past a building site is being wolf whistled (well, in a former life, maybe).

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    1. Oh, I miss those days when I could pass by a building site and be wolf whistled, LOL!

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  22. I don't have many male frags to compare to the subject at hand, but I venture to suggest Jicky vintage parfum/extrait.

    To me, the civet beats the lavender to submission severely enough to suggest masculinity(this was a favourite of Sean Connery btw)

    But then again, maybe it's just my own bottle that has that characteristic due to aging.

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    1. I think I recall Katie saying she thought Jicky smelled fecal. It wasn't a compliment.

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    2. I only remember her diaper pail comment. The parfum is fecal,but only just,and only in a good way!

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    3. It's just as Gavin was saying in his earlier comment: perceptions of the outrageousness of perfumes change through the generations. Yesterday's "perrowwww" is today's "diaper pail".

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  23. Late to this party. And what a party! Although nothing quite fits what the questioner was looking for, I'll add PG's l'Ombre Fauve. Pretty private parts.

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  24. It makes me want to understand more of what was considered "outrageous" for each generation and why.

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    1. I can think that in more genteel times than ours there would be a real pleasure in smelling the more animalic aspects of fragrance because there might have been a sense of stepping outside of what was acceptable in thought and expression that would have created another level of excitement to experiencing a perfume. But as the comments here would attest, no-one is considering whether they are breaching any standards of decorum in describing perfume in any manner of biological ways. Maybe perfumes' ability to stoke a sense of our being personally outre in its wearing has left us. What I love about the original post and the comments below is they can be seen to describe why our tastes in perfume might have so obviously changed, and why a note that might have once been pleasingly outrageous in its use, is now simply a note you either like or don't.

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  25. Come to think of it, Guerlain Djedi may indeed be a contender here ~ dirt, dust & dry saltiness. A construction worker's private parts?

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  26. Katie, I'm the one who wrote the diabetic urine letter! I can tell you, as a gay man, I'm incredibly well-versed in the smell of male taints. But I think you're right--maybe civet?

    I did try Kouros by YSL as per your suggestion. Let me say this: I'm not trying to crawl into a man's prostate--well, I might be, but not in perfumery. I just want a whiff of the general area, like I'm in the lockerroom after all the rugby players have showered and left.

    I've recently fallen in love with Michael by Michael Kors--freesia and tuberose, yummy--and Prada L'eau Ambree. But they're both still too clean.

    I will find a sample of Kublai Khan and report back.

    -Philip
    http://www.youtube.com/user/spider75berkeley?feature=mhee

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    1. Oh Philip! I'm so glad you found us here, talking about you behind your back...so to speak. I couldn't remember how to find you, but now I remember watching your "cow on the subway" happening on the San Francisco BART.

      It does seem that even with perineal perfume lovers, there is such a thing as a bridge too far. In this case, the bridge that leads directly to the colon.

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  27. Philip
    ASKEW by Humiecki and Graef has a clean/sweaty smell. Also, go to luckyscent website and read reviews for COMPLEX by BOADICEA THE VICTORIOUS. This one could be "right up" your street.

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  28. Perhaps he could just go to a pet store, buy a pet ferret and let it rub on his clothes. They produce a fairly distinct musk that has a slight urine odor to it (in my opinion).

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    1. "Pet Ferret" -- the new fragrance by Etat Libre d'Orange.

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  29. God I LOVE the smell of ferrets!!

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