Call me an old hippy but I am utterly in love with the smell of patchouli oil. When I was a teenager is was the the preserve of festival goers, bikers and those with a penchant for gypsy skirts and gong therapy. In truthfulness, it still is. And yet, it’s also wonderful addition to any man’s bathroom cabinet.
One of the signature basenotes of many men’s fragrances – not least two of my all-time favourites, Givenchy Gentleman and Le Labo Patchouli 24 – it has a delightfully earthy, musty, masculine aroma that’s long lasting and (to me at least) fantastically sexy.
I often use a few drops as an alternative to traditional fragrance (as with most essential oils you should dilute it with a little carrier oil though I seem to be able to use it neat on my skin without problems).
It also has the advantage of being very portable so is great for travel too. I’ve also found that a few drops on your ankles and wrists in the summer seems to guard against mosquito bites! The biggest advantage, though, is the price. At less than £7 a bottle this one is a brilliant recession-busting alternative to those £40 eau de toilettes.
Neal’s Yard Remedies Organic Patchouli Essential Oil costs £6.75 from Neal’s Yard Remedies
Grooming Guru Essentials are the products I genuinely love and have used as part of my own routine.