A GUIDE TO AFTERSHAVE

From the pool to the office, the pub to The Ivy, our pick of the likes of Byredo and Comme Des Garçons will see you right whatever the occasion. Like a sharp haircut or a crisp shirt, the right fragrance is the discrete necessity that every man needs. So we’ve taken the hard work out of finding a new men’s aftershave for you. But first, a quick guide to fragrances…

What’s the difference between an aftershave, eau de toilette and eau de parfum? 

A lot of men unknowingly use the terms interchangeably, but they actually refer to different things. Aftershave contains less perfume oil (around one to four per cent) and typically contains soothing ingredients such as aloe vera. The oil concentration here is perfect for post-shaving. The scent, as a result of its low oil level, lasts around three hours.

An eau de toilette contains more perfume oil than the aftershave (typically around four to eight per cent). This higher concentration means that if you put it on post-shaving, your skin is likely to turn blotchy and red. An eau de toilette lasts around six to eight hours.

If you’re looking for something that will (fingers crossed) last the whole day, then grab yourself an eau de parfum. Containing eight to 15 per cent perfume oil, these are the strongest fragrances you’ll find on the shelves. If you are after something even stronger, you can get simple parfums, but these are rarer and are only distributed by the likes of Saint Laurent and Givenchy.

What are the properties of a fragrance?

Fragrances are complex and it can often take perfumers up to a year to create one. Typically fragrances, along with whatever else a perfumer wants to add (for example, citrus notes or sandlewood), are made up of the following ingredients: ambergris, bergamot, neroli, oud, patchouli, vetiver, orris and tonka bean. While we could tell you all you need to know about these, we’ve already done that with this nifty guide to fragrances.

For now we bring you our roundup of the finest men’s aftershaves, eau de toilettes and eau de parfums. You’ll never smell better.

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