Not-So-Square-Roots: Irises for Men
Summer is the playground of mediocre scents. Right now, I’m loving a tube of Versace L’Eau Fraîche shower gel for after the gym. My boyfriend is using Hugo Man. We both have tons of niche to choose from on a daily basis, but much of niche doesn’t have that fresh zip that summer in Manhattan requires (especially, if you’re wearing a suit and tie). But before we go completely off the deep end and start spritzing ourselves with something like I Am King, I’d like to recommend three clean and refreshing iris fragrances that can make it into any man’s routine.
First off, getting the equivalent of four stars in my book, is Heeley Iris de Nuit. Iris by its very nature gives the illusion of coolness. Orris -- the official name of the rhizome that iris flowers grow out of -- comes from under the ground, out of the sun. James Heeley’s interpretation is done with a cedar and angelica root accord that, for some unknown reason, reminds me of licorice. Me suspects some vetiver, but I may be wrong. Despite its name, its the perfect daytime scent: limpid enough to refresh but tenacious enough to not have you spraying yourself as the clock strikes each hour. This is how Prada should have done their iris, but they put their pennies into the packaging instead.
Tied for second are two other irises for the boys: Divine L’Homme de Coeur and The Different Company’s Bois d’Iris. The former, created by Yann Vasnier, puts its iris in a cocktail shaker with some juniper and cypress tinctures for a markedly sexy man effect; the latter, brainchild of Jean-Claude Ellena employs bergamot and narcissus, making it the most perfumey of the three.
If I were to choose the runner-up, it would be Acqua di Parma’s Iris Nobile Eau de Parfum. Sweet, fruity and floral -- and perfectly wearable -- though it leaves me asking: when did you lose touch with your roots, man?