Wednesday, 25 January 2017 11:53

Tried & Tested JOOP! WOW!

Review Joop WOW fragrance men'sJOOP! WOW! awakens all the senses with captivating top notes of bergamot, cardamom and violet-leaf. A blend of rich absolutes: irresistibly sensual fir balsam, darkly masculine tonka bean and dangerously warm vanilla surabsolute. The foundation is the supremely woody base, noble combination of distinctive woods, vetiver and cashmeran, a memorable signature, full of masculinity, intensity and texture.

TheChicGeek says, “Joop fragrances became synonymous with toilet attendants in dodgy night spots and as such the brand was tinged with the dreaded ‘naff’ label. It’s never really resonated as a fashion brand here, unlike in Europe, and as such doesn’t have much identity.

Pronounced Joop with a J here, or with a Y on the continent, it wasn’t cool enough for people to look pretentious by saying it properly. 

Left - JOOP! WOW - 60ml EDT - £39

Time for a clean slate then. Coty, the brand license owner for fragrance, has made an effort with this one. The scent is good. It’s warm, woody and amber-like without being sticky which often happens at this price point. 

There’s masculine favourites of vetiver and tonka bean in there and a few gourmand ingredients such as vanilla and green notes such as geranium.

I just think there’s a disconnect between the name, the fragrance and the imagery and bottle. The image is of a mature (gentle)man, the fragrance is quite grown-up and the bottle looks likes a miniature of whisky, while the name ‘WOW!’ seems more immature, fun and for the younger, social media generation. 

I actually like the name WOW! it’s quite pop, but it seems more suited to maybe a Marc Jacobs fragrance then something with the serious and old-fashioned hashtag #thescentthatmakestheman

The simple bottle design doesn’t have any shelf appeal and isn’t gimmicky enough. I think they want the One Million crowd with this one.

The fragrance isn’t wow, but then what is? But, it’s good.” 

Monday, 16 January 2017 16:08

Hot List The Super Holdall

Troubadour holdall black duffle bagThis bag is the bomb. Actually, Troubadour should call this the ‘Bomb’, as it hasn't got a name.

British accessories brand, Troubadour, produce some great luggage and accessories and has, over the last few years, been growing their range and developing and enhancing their products.

I’ve been watching their progress and they know exactly what their stylish customers want: capacity, functionality, quality and understated branding.

If this was a ‘designer’ bag it would easily have a 1 in front of the number. It’s a giant holdall slash rucksack that could easily hold a week's holiday or trip. Stitch-free straps are injected with technical rubber for comfort and an external side pocket, top flap and internal mesh side pockets complete the design. The fabric body is strengthened by the crossing over leather straps while keeping the weight down.

You’ll look like a chic Action Man and carrying it will be the most stylish workout you’ve ever had. Now, squat!

Left & Below - Troubadour - Fabric + Leather Duffle - £895

Black holdall The Chic Geek

Chic Geek comment on the state of menswear & LFWMLondon’s men’s fashion week got its Ronseal title, this season, replacing the old London Collections: Men moniker. The change didn’t make any difference to the lack of content and money, unfortunately, but, hopefully, it meant more to the wider public with many still not realising there even was a men’s fashion week in London.

Left - Daniel W Fletcher Presentation

London and Britain, is good at fashion, we’re good at menswear, we should celebrate it and this is the event to do that at. Twice a year, we come together, test the temperature of the industry and move forward in the way fashion always does. There will always be ups and downs and better and worse seasons, but ultimately it’s big business, from luxury to high-street, and we’re one of the best at it. Let’s champion that.

LFWM is just more pointless than previously, yet still necessary. It needs to be done, otherwise other cities will take the focus away from London and London needs to seen as a centre of ideas and fashion. 

When we leave Europe, the British Fashion Council need to lobby the government for more funding for an industry that employs so many people and encourages people to visit and shop in the UK. If we’re going to build a successful post-European future we need to focus on areas we are good at. Creativity is one of those areas. Fashion links many of these together and is the energy and catalyst for newness.

When then pedestrianise Oxford Street, fashion weeks should move there into see-through marquees and become inclusive to those interested in it and bankrolling it on the pavements either side.

What’s the opposite to ‘having a moment’? Because this is what menswear is currently facing. It’s not solely a London problem, affecting all the main fashion cities, but as fashion is a business, when it needs to change and save money, things get cut.

There was lots of talk during LFWM about whether this would be the last one, but I think if it was going to disappear it would have done so this season. The doom and gloom of the last LC:M was replaced with an optimism that things can only get better and the acceptance that those big brands, now missing, are gone. It’s okay, nobody died.

This was a medicated fashion week. A fashion week on Prozac. Things weren’t as important as before, so it felt more democratic. The must-have tickets didn’t exist so people were more equal than ever. The have and have-nots of fashion weren’t as separate and it felt more inclusive and less frantic.

One of the problems I have it predictablity. Designers showing exactly what you think they’re going to show. They don’t move their collections on. I don’t expect a 180 u-turn every season, but as nobody is really buying anything anyway what do they have to lose? They just make you wonder why you turned up. A signature style is fine, but a designer known for tasteful newness will always excel.

Another, is this idea that fashion collections look a certain way. It’s all a bit graduate Fashion Scout,  and was new sometime in the Thatcher era. The bong-bong-bong music and po-faced press releases suck the life out of the spectacle and the audience and has the bullshit detector on max. Fashion always needs its wanky, taking-itself-too-seriously label, I get that, but there’s only so much eye rolling one can do.

So, let’s think positive. When things hit rock bottom things can only go up. This half glass full attitude to men’s is what will keep it going. Those big brands disappearing will create room for something new: a vacuum for the future. The future is close, we just need to entertain ourselves until it arrives.

Monday, 09 January 2017 13:59

Vintage Street Geek - Samir in New Cross

2009 - This look is about proportions. Sami's jacket is cropped to give a full view of his jeans but he doesn't look top heavy. He's played to his strengths and accentuates his slim shape. The fitted nature of the jacket compliments the smaller collar on the white shirt and skinny tie. The checks on the jacket and ticket pocket gives interest and adds a more traditional tweedy touch. The six buttons on the jacket also makes the jacket practical. The patent shoes add an air of evening.

Review Maskorea Grooming Mask The Chic GeekThere are currently 3 sheet masks in the Maskorea range including Too Many Late Nights, aimed at younger skin, Instant Glow and Turn Back the Clocks, for more mature skin. They each contain a 3-step treatment experience including natural cleanser, 30 minute sheet mask and overnight moisturiser.

Left - Maskorea - Instant Glow Sheet Mask  - £7.99 from Amazon or www.maskoreamasks.com

A unique 3-step product that includes a foaming pre-mask wash, a serum-infused cellulose face mask and a luxurious post-mask anti-ageing night cream to provide a total regime for ultimate results.

Face Mask The Chic Geek Grooming MaskoreaTheChicGeek says, “Thanks to Instagram and the American Psycho/Patrick Bateman-type image they have on the wearer, these sheets have become more popular, recently.

There’s not much the Koreans don’t know about skincare so you feel like you’re in a safe pair of hands. 

Right - Patrick Bateman or The Chic Geek?!

The mask comes in three parts: a cleanser which is a soft, soapy cleanser, the mask, which is really wet, but that helps it cling to your face - the facial hair parts it struggles with though - and then a gel-like after treatment of anti-ageing night cream. 

Men like a one off treatment and this is easy to use and not messy. Some masks, particularly clay types, take ages to wash off and get into your hairline. 

You leave the mask on for the 30 mins, so this isn’t a rush job. The anti-ageing night cream is quite tacky and leaves you with the 'Instant Glow' as promised. My skin felt cleaned and fresh. Next time I would shave first and then apply so it sticks to those areas better. This would be a really nice treatment after a day at the beach or a hot day. Put the mask in the fridge and use it extra cold. 

Now, where did I leave that chainsaw?!”

 

Wednesday, 04 January 2017 16:22

Hot List The Military Ribbon Trenchcoat

Trenchcoat menswear The Chic Geek I've always been a big fan of Belgian designer, Dries van Noten, but he was very slow to embrace the internet and e-commerce so his collections haven't been as visible as other brands or designers over the last few years.

He's finally got with the programme and this season's collection is beautiful. He's used military embroidery and details to decorate his menswear collection. I particularly like the use of this medal ribbon which looks like a (Gucci) snake from a distance. Because it's medal ribbon it feels masculine and complements this traditional military style trench coat which has the addition of two large and handsome external pockets. This is a great update of a classic coat style.

Left & Below - Dries van Noten - Radley Grosgrain-Trimmed Wool-Blend Trench Coat - £1410 From MrPorter

Military trench coat hot list menswear Dries van Noten