Blog post by Gwen

Fantastic Man - foreign and familiar and fantastic

Some great things have come out of Sweden – Ikea, Alexander Skarsgård and Byredo Parfums.

Byredo Parfums is a niche line founded by Ben Gorham in 2006. Initially, the focus was on fragrance products for the home, but in 2008 Byredo launched its first personal fragrances, most of them based on particular memories and experiences of Mr. Gorham. Since then, Byredo has produced an impressive fragrance line, but my first love was Fantastic Man. I bought it at Colette the first time I sampled it.

Fantastic Man was inspired by a Dutch men's magazine called Fantastic Man. The magazine’s byline is: The Gentleman’s Style Journal. The editorial focus is men’s fashion, style and lifestyle through interviews with male celebrities – actors, writers, artists from different countries and with different backgrounds. The result is a witty, playful, well - designed magazine.

A collaboration between a hot new niche perfume line and a cool men's style magazine was a natural fit. But what of the juice? True to the playfulness and originality of the magazine, Fantastic Man is promoted as a take on the classic men’s cologne. Hmmm. Let’s see: it opens with that mainstay of men’s cologne, citrusy bergamot, but here is it tempered with the warmth and soft spiciness of star anise and cardamom. Then, dirty geranium starts to appear backed by woody incense for depth and more warmth. That other traditional men’s cologne note, lavender, shows up too and offers a lovely floral dimension. At the base vetiver, moss and patchouli come forward and bring it to a beautiful warm, green, soft dry down that stays close to the skin.

As promised, it has the ingredients of a traditional men’s cologne but it doesn’t smell like one. That's because Fantastic Man isn't a cologne at all but an eau de perfume. So, it's not about what ingredients are used but the proportions of those ingredients that make the difference. That explains why it smells old and new, warm and cool, familiar, foreign and fantastic!

UPDATE: Sadly, the collaboration between Byredo and Fantastic Man ended, but Fantastic Man eau de parfum lives on as Sunday Cologne. Same juice, just a different name.

Check out Fantastic Man in our Shop.