Saturday, June 6, 2015

Scent Trunk Review

I'm so glad I'm a guy.

That may as well be my mantra. Women have to do so much to get ready before facing the public - make-up, hair straightened or curled (the grass is always greener, it seems), some semblance of fashion sense, heels that sacrifice comfort for shape, and so on. Never mind pregnancy, periods and pay.
Guys (guys like me anyway), all we have to do is clean up and smell good. Even shaving is up to me! I thank James Dean every day I can go for the white T-shirt/blue jeans option. Simple, and effective.

Which is why smelling good is important. It's a first impression, a powerful memory trigger, and it's one of the only ways a man can really make a personal touch to his overall personality. But there are so many kinds out there, and as a guy that shops based on need vs want, I don't have the energy to look for something that smells nice. For years I was using Calvin Klein's Be, something simple, not sweet, kind of spicy. The last few years, I've had, through an astounding coincidence, the same aftershave as the very first bottle I got for Christmas - Stetson's Preferred Stock (I'm not a fancy man).

This, though, is intriguing. Scent Trunk lets you fill out a survey of your preferred smells - grass over flowers, citrus over ocean, etc. It then logs your results, and sends you some sample size bottles in the mail.

There are a few parameters that Scent Trunk goes by - my high scores were "green", "citrus", "woods", and to a certain extent "oriental". When my 3 showed up - Note Fragrances' "White Pepper Mandarin", Costume National's "Scent Intense", and Billy Jealousy's "Illicit" - they came with a card each that displayed a brief overview, a break down of top, middle, and bass notes (the scents you smell at first, midway, and longest lasting), whether they're a day and/or night smell, how long they last, and sillage (how strongly the scent diffuses around the wearer). It gives you a good idea of what you're getting yourself into - apart from the actual smell of course.

With the help of a couple of female friends, I was able to find out that while all 3 are great, my personal favourite was Costume National, despite the trepidation I felt when seeing one of the descriptors was "patchouli", a hippie red flag. Meanwhile, the girls seemed to all like Billy Jealousy - bergamot, sandalwood, and tea.

But the best part of the site is the options for boxes. Not only is there a his and hers, but also a monthly vs seasonal. $15 per month gets you 3 scents per month, while the $20 Seasonal gets you 4 scents every 3 months - perfect for switching up your style along with your clothing (if you're into that sort of thing...).

This is a great service because it gives you a wider range to find out exactly what it is you like without having to shell out the money for a full bottle. Here's a fun fact: you know I talked about "notes" earlier? Well, when you're sampling the cologne in the store, you really only ever smell the "top notes", the smells that evaporate first.  So you could be buying an entire bottle of something that you don't even like after an hour of wear! With the sample bottles, you get an idea of what to buy. Incidentally, Scent trunk has just opened their online store where all of the colognes you could possibly receive in the mail are available to buy full-sized. There's a broad range, from $30 to $300, and you can check out additional info on each scent that catches your eye/nose. Yet another reason to try out small sizes - you could be getting a deal!

We don't have to do much as guys. The trick is to do those few necessary things, and do them well. 

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