One Thousand Scents

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Through and Through: Etro Mahogany

There are a lot of "transparent" scents on the market these days, and by this we generally mean light, gauzy, inoffensive: that's how I use it. But Mahogany really does smell transparent, like this

which is an LED clock made of wood fronted by a veneer thin enough that the light shows through when you plug it in. Etro's Mahogany gives the impression that if it were an object, light would show through it, too. It's woody: I doubt that it's identifiably mahogany (it seems too lightweight for such a dark wood), but it does smell abstractly of sandalwood, with its transparency amplified through a big dose of bright, breezy vetiver and a scattering of pepper.

Some people think it smells highly synthetic, but it doesn't to me: the sandalwood is surely a synthetic, but it's a good one, and well supported with fresh outdoorsy top notes and a warm but unsweet vanilla-amber base. Most online retailers list it as a women's fragrance, which never means anything to me but makes even less sense in the context of what to anyone's nose must be a dry, woody scent in the masculine mold. (Not, obviously, that a woman couldn't wear it.)

I suppose if you put this in a lineup you wouldn't find anything particularly special or novel about this, nothing to make it stand out from the crowd, but I went through my sample pretty quickly and enjoyed every minute of it. Etro Mahogany is a good thing for a man to smell like.

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