Monday, March 4, 2013
With all the powerhouse fragrances I've owned, worn or sampled, I still find Bijan Men to be one of the most ferocious. It was the first fragrance I ever bought for myself, back in 1993, and I've gone through a period of liking it, then hating it, and now liking it again. This is a scent you can't be indifferent to, because it's so powerful. I'm amazed when I hear people say that the current version of Bijan Men, which is made by Five Star Fragrances, smells watered down compared to the original version by Bijan. Granted, I'm going on my memory of that first bottle I had twenty years ago (it was the original version), but the current juice smells to me just as searing and brash as it was back in the day. The scent also is the same as I remember it.
The opening and middle stages are violently strong. This is an extremely spicy fragrance, almost to the point of absurdity. If you've never tried this, you are either going to love it or think it's the most obnoxious stench you've ever encountered. I used to think it smelled like hairspray and gasoline. Now that I like it again, I recognize it for what it really is: a head-on assault of clove, nutmeg and carnation. The stinging middle notes are so assertive, they completely overpower the base notes for the first few hours; it took me numerous wearings to even realize that Bijan Men is an oriental fragrance - the aromatic notes are so strong they almost steamroll the sweet benzoin and amber in it. There's also, of course, a ton of leather, moss and patchouli in there, so this frag has plenty of macho power.
A lot of reviewers (that is, those who like this scent) describe Bijan Men as being a sophisticated, debonaire fragrance for a classy, mature gentleman. I don't really get that. I find it brutal and crude, and it stays that way for hours and hours, even well into the drydown.
However, that crudeness is what I find most appealing about Bijan Men. It takes balls for a company to even still produce this, never mind for someone to wear it. I love it for its audacity and aromatic strength. It may not be my favorite power scent, but it's a damn good one.
You may love it or you may hate it, but you definitely won't find it lacking in masculinity.
MY RATING: 8/10
Fragrance House: Bijan, Five Star Fragrances