Guest Post by Margeaux
Shiseido Zen for Men 2009
“Infinite passion. Endless possibilities.” goes the tagline on this wonderful fragrance from Shiseido, one of Japans leading cosmetic and beauty houses. As with a lot of my smells, I bought this one on a whim as well. I was a huge, HUGE fan of a previous Shiseido men’s fragrance, Basala for Men, which has been discontinued for so long now it is but a distant fragrant memory for me. Developed in 2009 by Françoise Caron and Francis Kurkdjian, Shiseido’s guide tells me that this is a spicy woody frag layered with exotic fruits and masculine musk, and I reckon they are pretty much bang on with how this one plays out.
Fragrantica gives these featured accords::
Top: Nashi Pear, Bergamot, Kumquat
Middle: Nutmeg, Violet, Rhododendron
Base: Patchouli, Leather, Musk
So still being a bit new to reviewing perfumes, forgive me if my terms aren’t always right or clear but I am learning as I go.
Lets start with the bottle – a hefty chunk of clear glass housing a lovely translucent sea green/blue liquid. Topped with a mirrored cube that picks up every tiny fingerprint, but when polished looks amazing sitting on your dresser, very masculine, contemporary and smart bottle that I love to pick up. Very similar to another favourite bottle design – Gucci’s original Men’s Gucci Pour Homme EDT.
I spray with abandon to get a full dose of Zen onto my skin, and the opening is very fresh, very clean and maybe just a little sharp for my nose. It’s possible that I put too much on, but I like to get that full hit with anything I spray. Call me greedy – I don’t care! Once its settled in a few minutes, the fruits really start to come through and it becomes a whole lot more pleasant. I find it to be refreshing and not at all too sweet either.
The opening notes don’t seem to linger too long before it grows into the middle, the lovely violet and Rhododendron beginning to steal the show. This stage is altogether lovely, and each chance waft is a delight, calming and caressing, never impatient.
The highlight for me though is much later when the nutmeg, leather and musk begin to (slow) dance together. This is when the real masculinity of this fragrance comes to the fore and stays right where it can be enjoyed. I also get a hint of tobacco or cigar smoke in my nose, although it’s clearly not mentioned anywhere so I may just be adding that in from my own experiences or desires. One minor disappointment for me is that the patchouli seems to have gone missing. If you read my last review of Boss Elements Aqua [LINK], I mentioned how much I love patchouli and although it’s included in Zen for Men, I can’t really find it.
Photo Stolen ChangeDesktop
Zen for Men lasts well on me, I get a good 6-8 hours of smell and as other reviewers mention, it stays much longer on clothing so I will often spray this when I am throwing on a jumper (sweater for you north americans!) in the cooler autumn months and let the fragrance taint my jumper, so that until washing it becomes the Zen jumper.
Shiseido’s marketing suggests that this fragrance provides freedom when you find enlightenment, with dynamic essences, and internal passion intensified by an endless energy. Umm, ok, lol. It’s a bit much for me. But lets cut to the chase – it smells bloody good. So ignore the mumbo-jumbo marketing stuff and get your hands on this one.
CheapSmells has 50ml/$47
See you soon,
Here is the movie