Ever notice that when someone doesn't know what to get for you as as gift, you wind up with perfume? Over the years (because I am SO hard to buy for), I have come into possession of several bottles of perfume. And for some reason, I cannot throw them away. So I have a mini perfumery in my linen closet. God help me if a tree falls on my house or something and smashes them all - we'd have to call out the haz-mat team!
My perfume career began as a teen with "Charlie" and "Jean Nate". I always loved Jean Nate - it was so fresh and clean smelling - a bonus when you live in the humid, sultry south. I suspect there was also a lot of alcohol involved because you literally FELT cool when you splashed some of this stuff on. Eventually, I moved on to Ciara. I liked Ciara and stuck with it for years. Many, many moons ago, my grandfather's second wife (now deceased), brought me a large bottle of Chanel No. 5 from the duty-free shop on her way from England. I still have most of it left, though the bottle has got to be 20 years old - and when I want to feel particularly sophisticated, I dab a bit on and remember the lovely lady with elbow length gloves and purple Nikes who gave it to me.
I went through a dry spell. No one gave me perfume, and it's not something I buy for myself. My nose had suddenly begun working like a champ due to quitting smoking, and strong smells of ANY kind tended to send me 'round the bend, so I shied away from perfumes completely - being so easily bowled over when an innocent perfume wearer would pass by leaving a wake of intense, eye-watering smell. I foreswore perfume altogether.
My husband would also go through phases of perfuming himself. If he happened to be smoking at the time, there would be more (lucky sod can pick up and put down cigarettes at will). When we first started dating, he wore pachoulli oil, which smelled good, but left my lips absolutely numb. There was a brief Brut phase and an even briefer Old Spice phase. Mostly he smelled of soap, which was fine with me. Sometimes he smelled of tea tree oil or tiger balm.
Sensing this rather disturbing trend in smells, my mother-in-law began attempting to perfume us again. A couple of years ago there was an unfortunate bout with JLo perfume. Let's not go there. And something she got for Darling Man that smelled like rubber monkeys.
This past Christmas, she tried it again. Windsong for me (nice, actually), and Antonio! for Darling Man.
Never mind that I am not a real Antonio Banderas fan. Love the accent, love the smouldering look in his eye, love his hair in the Zorro movies. His fascination with Melanie Griffith is beyond me, and his "normal" haircuts are most unfortunate. But when the man lends his name and his face to a perfume for men - well, ladies - I have to admit we've got a winner.
Oh, Antonio!!!! Your perfume for menfolks is absolutely divine. And the box isn't bad either.