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How do you want your clinician to smell? I think there’s a place for a subtle, understated scent for the gentleman doctor in clinic.  Scents add to an experience, provide an environment that may endorse comfort and relaxation for the patient.

What wouldn’t work?  Scents meant for other places – the sport club, the bar.  The clinic’s all about the patient and their experience.  They do not need to be intrigued or focused on the doctor.  Anything that speaks of gender – feminine or masculine – might be unsettling to the patient, as well as the more primitive human scents of musk and sweat.  We’ve been there, we’ve changed scrubs after 24 hours, and it’s not a memorable example of doctoring at its finest, working your butt off without a break.  A scent might get the doctor away from some of those miserable times as well.

I see mostly well older adults in an outpatient setting.  A doctory scent might help the nervous or irritable, break the chain of worry.

My current scent palette’s getting run-down. Aigner EDT, just bland; Hugo Dark Blue‘s got a third left, Grey Flannel by Beene’s used up and only Green Jeans by Versace’s fresh.  That’s the leader in this bunch; grapefruit and springtime; but out of kilter for October’s chill.  I do like Grey Flannel; it’s Tres Kitsch in the big league parfumeries, kinda Walmarty. I need something a subtle doctor scent – woody and understated, reassuring.

What makes for a doctory scent?  I find that the pervasive presence of modern industry and sales makes the rational selection of a scent for doctors nearly impossible.  Here, buy this!  the reviewers in the magazines say – magazines that also advertise the seller’s product.  Recognize a Brand, yes?  Smell like The Donald!  Does he, or anyone, actually sniff the scents that they’re peddling?  Linsay Lohan?  Lady Gaga? Mike Pence?  (Naw, not Mike Pence.)

I’ll list some ideas, and of course welcome any feedback.  I’ll put the information in this taxonomy -the principal product, the scent house and parent company.  The various abbreviations such as EDC mean “eau de (cologne)” etc.  Sillage means how it fills the room; think of a fart in an elevator.  What’s on the way now –

  • No. 4711 by Echt Kolnisch Wasser Unisex EDC Cologne Splash.  This is the original cologne, or Kolnischwasser.  It’s been around since 1799.  I don’t recognize the scent, but I’m sure that I will.thebugcoz2z
  • The Bug by Gorilla Perfumes at Lush Cosmetics. It’s not referring to the crawling invertebrates, but the dystopic information society.  I haven’t smelled it.  It’s said to be eccentric green labdanum; much-disliked. May smell of Raid Flying Insect; more summery. “A really mouldy, “dodgy” and vegetal accord absolutely recommended to all those solitary eccentric fellows (may be with unmentionable secrets behind) which wanna hold on to stand apart.”  A Jeremy Corbyn of scents.

I received some other credible recommendations to try.  I’m possibly going to take a run by some of these:

  1. Annick Goutal Duel  The most tasteful and understated of the list, they say.” Citrus matcha (green tea) with the most exquisite leathery powder drydown. A soft orris suede, not as masculine as the label makes out”.
  2. Lalique Encre Noir for Men “Enjoying Encre Noire makes me question even more the current sweet, un-challenging and gentle sickly fragrances trend. Very inky wet leaves smoke. Wear to a funeral; gloom in a bottle; transportative; a gloomy forest with decaying woods and burn barrels burning trash and leaves and who knows what.”  Sounds like fall.
  3. Guerlain Vetiver “Vetiver is unique in its own way. It reminds me of a fresh mown lawn with a touch of sweetness in the fragrance. Projection is extremely mild.  It is soft, soapy, layered and nuanced and balanced.”
  4. Terre d’Hermes, Voyage, Les Jardins , Eau de Narcisse Bleu; Hermes
  5. Bulgari Eau Parfumee au The Vert.  Elegant and light, but bigger sillage.
  6. Hermessence Osmanthe Yunnan Hermes “The opening of this perfume alone is worth the price of admission. A few years ago, I first met real osmanthus in Japan in late spring, and was driven half mad running around trying to find the source of the amazing smell. Well, it has been captured in this bottle, although it will disappear in as little as 20 seconds.  Osmanthe Yunnan is like a chimera passing by, carrying a memory so delicate and ephemeral that it seems impossible to catch..The rest of the fragrance is a relatively wearable peach and white tea accord, very soft and quite pleasant, even as it dries down. Like a bottled up Hermes silk square.”

Also wonder about Cigar by Rémy Latour. “This innovative masculine aroma exceeds all expectations. Cigar perfume from the house of Rémy Latour (launched in 1996) is an intense, powerful and fresh fragrance that begins with notes of bergamot, lemon, pears, prunes and pineapple. The composition is heated by the aromatic notes of flowers such as marigold, geranium, jasmine and bay leaves. Lower notes will afford you the luxury of cedar, patchouli and sandalwood, blended with tobacco and musk.”

I don’t like them using the word perfume, because I’m a guy.  Other than that, I’m intrigued by the descriptions.  Also, remember, perfumes are the cutting-edge of the retail manufacturing industry – they are self-descriptions by the company that is trying to put a spin on a very expensive product, most of the price depending on things you don’t know well.  How much is this worth?  A buck, a thousand bucks?  That’s why a preponderance of fragrances on the internet market are phoney, fresh from China, using unknown and scary ingredients  (e.g. road tar.)

I also went a little gaga, and got some samplers from a goth indie site, the Black Phoenix Alchemy Site, very cheezy and high-school Goth.  Think Drakkar Noir in the TV series “Raising Hope,” and you got the image.  The scents here are spurned by the perfumarati even more than is Grey Flannel.  The Goth kids here concoct mixed scents – the stuff that the hair-spray people use, the scrubbing bubbles scents, etc., to make their woeful and scary-sounding mixtures.  Were Hallowe’en not afoot, I wouldn’t have gotten any “imp’s ears” i.e. a tiny sample of the oils for sale.  I gotta go to work in a minute, here’s what I’m trying soon.  By the way, the descriptions are wonderful – ABSOLUT advertising Wu!  These people are throwing together smells, and sticking labels and backstories on them for the masses.  They sell ancient potions that some chemistry dropout from Cal State Fullerton made up in a half-hour, and a Lit Major from Pomona wrote a spooooooky backstory on.  Watch yer soul when you use these.  WOOOOOOOO!

  • ObatalaObatala’s ofrenda is soft, white and pure: milk, coconut meat, shea butter and cool, refreshing water.
  • The Antikythera Mechanism
  • The Black Rider – Black leather, oppoponax, tobacco, and black amber.
  • WhitechapelA gentleman’s blend, possessed of dignity, charm and refinement, but in truth masking a corrupted, hideous, soulless core. White musk, lime, lilac and citron. (Well, the ingredients, sound nice, but…)
    Van VanA venerable voodoo blend, used for purification of the spirit and to amplify positive personal power.
  • Lear
  • Fallen The essence of overweening pride and unearthly angelic beauty. A regal scent, glowing darkly, elegant and patrician, but unfathomably desolate. Cherubic white sandalwood and golden musk with a dark halo of amber, a breath of imperial florals, unbending woods, and the shadow cast by vetiver and violet.

OK, witch doctor stuff for Halloween.

I will compile my various ratings on the Scent Page, which I hope to be an index to the various reports on-line.

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