Will Jay Z’s new men’s fragrance strike gold?

JAY Z GOLDI honestly don’t know what happens when celebrities dabble in fragrances. It’s as if their sense of reason, good taste and self-respect leaves the building faster than they leave it after a gig or PA. I sometimes suspect they only actually get a whiff of what’s done in their name for a split second between more important things like negotiating a deal to play a private gig in Qatar and opening a bag of fashion freebies.

jay-z-goldHaving said that, when I first heard that Jay Z was to release a men’s fragrance I was actually rather excited. After all, Mr Carter strikes me as a guy of considerable taste, sophistication and integrity.

So quite why he should put his name to Gold Jay Z I have no idea. It’s not that this ‘white fougère’ is horrible per se (though it does rather catch in the back of the throat) it’s that it’s so safe, pedestrian and well…generally meh.

Generic, with a sweet, slightly powdery edge, it has that nose-tingling acrid quality prevalent in so many contemporary men’s fragrances and, to my hooter anyway, smells like a curious mix of fairy cakes and stale tobacco. In its defence it’s an extremely commercial scent by the standards of the day and I quite like the cap.

All in all, I’d put it on a par with the Bond 007 fragrance in terms of sophistication, though if you’re familiar with this blog you’ll know that this is damning, not so much with faint praise, but with no praise at all. But then, what do I know? That Bond fragrance flew out of the shops faster than sh*t off a shovel.

The notes

Top Yellow ginger, white cardamon, grapefruit, blueberry

Middle Violet leaf, cypress, lavender, vetiver, pink pepper

Base Golden amber, patchouli, teak, bourbon vanilla

Gold Jay Z debuts in Superdrug on 12 February priced £25 for 30ml eau de toilette spray.

Black & White Pomade celebrates 90 yrs of immaculate hairdressing

Given the fact that I’m ‘thin of thatch’ reviewing hair stying products is always a challenge for me so thesedays I tend to have an army of men (well one) who I rope in to test them for me. I think of it as hairdressing by proxy.

Anyway, Black & White’s near legendary pomade needs no introduction (it graced the quiffs of Elvis and James Dean) and this year it celebrates its 90th birthday which is why one ended up on my doorstep the other week. My tester reckons it’s his favourite styling product ever (in fairness he was already a huge fan) but given the fact that it’s still here after all these years who cares? Time has been the true test of its efficacy.

It’s pliable, remouldable and perfect for styles where you want a glossy finish. What’s more, the Limited Edition 90th Anniversary version is a gorgeous thing to have, featuring, as it does, the original 1920s label design. Slick. Literally.

Available from Boots and Superdrug, priced £7.95 for 200ml. For more info go to www.blackandwhitewax.com