It's Christmas morning 1982, and as usual the Xenos start the day with a trip to their neighbors, Jan and Artie. A few more logs are thrown on the fire and the kids start opening their gifts.
Now it's our turn to exchange gifts and Artie hands me a small brick-like package and tells me it's something they just announced and he thinks I might like it. You see, Artie was the head of package development back then for Estee Lauder. The gift he was handing me was a bottle of JHL
by Estee Lauder. Strange name, huh? Not so strange really. Estee, had developed this fragrance in honor or her late husband J
auder. While I have nothing concrete to prove this, I don't think Estee Lauder ever considered it necessary for this fragrance to be a commercial success. She just wanted it to be special. And, special it is. Deep, rich and spicy, it is the smell of success.
I've never been good at describing fragrances for men. For me, I have had to find them to be, for lack of a better way of saying this, part of me. Does that resonate at all with you?
It's not a fragrance I slap on to smell a certain way, but rather a fragrance that somehow completes me. And, for the last quarter century my fragrance of choice for formal evenings has been JHL
. A Description
This is a confident man's scent. Deep, rich and sophisticated with definite notes of Amber and Cinnamon, it would seem out of place on a boy who might get away with something like Drakkar or even classic Aramis. JHL
was definitely developed with the man who is comfortable in his own skin firmly in mind.
This might explain the relative obscurity of this fragrance. Since its introduction in 1982, JHL goes in and out of production. And, even when it is in production you'll find it relatively difficult to find. If you're a confident, fiercely independent sort, this aspect may appeal to you. It does me.
Although for a mens fragrance, JHL is ghastly expensive ($100/3.4oz), its price is deceptive. This is a fragrance that should be used with a very light touch. This is truly a cologne, not an aftershave. A single drop on each side of your neck (or behind the ear if you prefer) is all that it takes to produce a signature aroma. Isn't that really what we're searching for? My Preference
I like to use JHL in the evenings, particularly formal evenings. Used in this fashion, a bottle of JHL will last for years. For a more casual fragrance, my strong preference is for another Estee Lauder fragrance: Devin by Aramis
. Not Aramis mind you, but Devin by Aramis. Bottom Line
If your goal is to smell like every second metrosexual, this is not the fragrance for you. Wearing JHL will not have you smelling like a scent strip in a magazine. JHL will have you smell the way Estee Lauder thought a man should smell. A man truly close to her heart.