After the aquatic Nineties and the citrusy Noughties, the past decade has seen men’s scents get progressively heavier, richer and woodier. In particular, oud and vanilla have become hallmarks of what constitutes a “masculine” fragrance – often accompanied by an advertising campaign featuring a brooding be-stubbled man in a suit. However, as we verge into the next decade and the gender-free fashion becomes more popular, the ideas of notes that are innately “masculine” and “feminine” is starting to break down. More brands are returning to a more traditional unisex attitude towards fragrance, and the result is a rise in certain types of scent that had been previously passed over as an option for men – and as we switch from our summer scents to our winter ones, the most important right now are those which put fruitiness front and centre.
If the notion of a fruit fragrance makes you instantly think of something sickly sweet, think again, This new generation of fragrances grounds the generally sweeter fruit elements with a foundation of something zingier, woodier or more sensual. Perhaps the best example of this is Tom Ford’s latest release Lost Cherry, where the big bombastic hit of cherry is anchored with darker, ballsier notes of balsam and tonka bean.
However, if you’re not a cherry man, there are plenty more options out there which shine the spotlight on a wide variety of fruit notes for every palate, from oranges to limes to figs. Whichever you prefer, now’s the time to get something a little juicier in your grooming cabinet. Here are the best fruity fragrances for men right now…
Byredo Pulp eau de parfum
Sometimes you’ll hear the liquid inside your cologne bottle called a “juice” by fragrance experts, and this scent epitomises why. While citrus is a mainstay of men’s fragrances, Byredo’s Pulp is the juiciest take on oranges we’ve ever experienced. Adding peach flower and apple to the big hit of bergamot might make this incredibly orange-y, but it’s kept clean and wearable thanks to a slightly spicy undercurrent of cedarwood and cardamom.
£105 for 50ml, byredo.com
Tom Ford Lost Cherry eau de parfum
This fragrance has, at its heart, a combination of cherry and almond, but it’s taken far from Bakewell Tart territory thanks to the rather masterful, calming elements of woody balsam and sandalwood, green vetiver and a hint of floral jasmine.
£218 for 50ml, tomford.co.uk
Hérmès Rhubarb Écarlate eau de cologne
Yes, we know rhubarb is a vegetable, but when deployed in fragrance form, much like in a crumble, it brings a fruiter vibe. Hermes’ use of the ingredient keeps it the right side of sweet with a crispness and freshness added thanks to notes of berries and musk.
£75 for 100ml, johnlewis.com
Jo Malone Huntsman Assam & Grapefruit eau de cologne
If you’re a fan of a citrusy scent but want to break out of the traditional lemon-based box, try something that centres on the rounder, sweeter scent of grapefruit. Jo Malone’s Assam and Grapefruit, from the perfumer’s Huntsman collaboration, is a citrus scent with a savoury twist, with cardamom, patchouli and black tea added into the mix.
£120 for 100ml, jomalone.co.uk
Floris Limes eau de toilette
The oldest fragrance on the list (it was launched back in 1832), Floris’ Limes has become a classic because it is one of only a handful of fragrances to shine the spotlight on its namesake green citrus fruit. Any potential sourness from the lime and lime flower (linden) is removed thanks to the addition of lily of the valley and musk to create a unisex fragrance that’s fresh all day long.
£80 for 100ml, florislondon.com
Dyptique Philosykos eau de toilette
If you’re into more of a vegetal vibe, Dyptique’s fig-heavy Philosykos delivers that green hit you need. While it opens with a juicy fruitiness, the second wave notes ensures it dries down into something far more verdant thanks to the presence of fig tree, fig leaf and cedarwood.
£90 for 100ml, dyptiqueparis.com