It goes without saying that a man's smell is a deeply personal thing. It's also, by default, a natural form of self-expression. So to get a feel for the best scents being offered this year, we consulted with Marlen Harrison, creator and editor of theperfumecritic.com and contributor to Basenotes, NowSmellThis,and Fragrantica. "This season it's all about the wood," says Harrison, referring to many current fragrances that are dominated by woody scents, typically sandalwood, cedar, and oud. Some even contain a dash of citrus or aromatic notes for character. Think of fragrances as similar to wines, whiskeys, or cigars; they all have various layers of notes and their characters are apt to change over time. With input from Harrison, we compiled a list of 2013's 10 best new colognes.
HiM by Hanae Mori Eau de Parfum
Hanae Mori's second fragrance for men packs a powerful opening punch that's fresh and delightfully spicy, opening with top notes of bergamot, mandarin orange, gray pepper, violet leaves, and cardamom. The robust heart encompasses cinnamon bark, Mediterranean fig, and tonka bean. It closes with teak wood, white cedar, fir balsam, musk, and amber. Despite the laundry list of exotic ingredients, the fragrance is elegant and simple, and so can be worn in any situation. [$70 for 1.7 oz or $95 for 3.4 oz; hanaemoriparfums.com]