Viktor & Rolf hope to spice up fragrance market with new fragrance

In the last few years the Holy Grail in terms of men’s fragrance has been to come up with something as successful as Paco Rabanne’s surprise hit 1 Million. I say surprise because, in reality, the fragrance itself is a bit ‘meh’ – its natural home being a Wolverhampton nightclub on a rainy Saturday night. But the bling bling bottle is genius which kind of makes it the ‘all-fur-coat-and-no-knickers’ of the fragrance world. Or ‘all-leather-jeans-and-no-Y-fronts’ if you prefer. But still it sells – by the bucket load.

In a crowded, increasingly competitive, market bottle design really matters (witness Marc Jacobs’ novel Bang flacon) so it’s no surprise that a stand-out bottle was top of mind when creating Viktor & Rolf’s new fragrance for men, Spicebomb.

Designed to resemble a hand grenade (it even has its own pin) it’s certainly eye-catching, though I’d have liked to have seen it a little heavier myself, since a weighty bottle always says quality to me.

And, so, what about the fragrance itself? Well, it’s quite different to the design duo’s first men’s fragrance, Antidote. The brief here was clearly to create something sexy, wearable and very ‘now’ and in this respect it succeeds admirably.

Spicebomb hits you like…well, a bomb really, with one big olfactory wallop. There’s chilli, saffron and pink pepper along with fresh bergamot and grapefruit notes and leather, tobacco and vetiver ones. It’s a more conventional blend than the press bumpf would have you believe and to me it has a headiness akin to fragrances like Mugler’s A*Men and a faint gourmand quality (the cinnamon maybe?).

It doesn’t feel quite as sophisticated, daring or as complex as Antidote, nor as quirky, but because of this it should be able to reach way beyond the former’s narrow customer base. Who knows? It may even go off like a….No, I’ll resist that one.

Viktor & Rolf’s Spicebomb is available exclusively from Harrods now and nationwide from 7th March priced £45 for 50ml eau de toilette.

Oy Voi!

At my age it’s often difficult to stay down with the kids. To be honest, I’m not entirely sure I want to be. Frankly, I can barely bring myself to indulge in modern language like ‘amazeballs’ and ‘totes’ on Twitter so when the new fragrance from Voi Jeans landed on my desk a few months ago I filed it under misunderstood yoof at the back of my cupboard. But while rumaging through things today I gave it a smell and it’s actually not of half bad.

If you detect more than a hint of surprise it’s because I’ve learnt not to be all that impressed by mid-priced fragrances. But then, to be honest, I’ve learnt not to expect much from the one costing £40 or more either so

Voi Jeans, I’m reliable told, have a celebrity following including Amir Khan, Aston Merrygold from JLS and Zain from One Direction and I can actually see them all wearing this accompanying fragrance. Though a heady, heavy fragrance –  with considerable staying power – Voi Jeans For Him is actually not half bad and spot on for its target market of young urban lads. Think Hugo Boss’ generic but wearable Hugo meets Mugler’s ostentatious A*Men – fresh and lemony but sweet and musky too, with amber and vanilla. Amazeballs.

Voi Jeans For Him costs £25 for the 100m eau de toilette. Call 0870 850 3868 for stockists.