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Since my initial discovery of Thierry Mugler's A*Men fragrance for men a good decade ago I've become somewhat addicted to his range of scents and colognes and have spent far too much money on an array of products from this renowned perfumier. A*Men is Mugler's male equivalent of his popular Angel fragrance for women and these two were the first in his now extensive 'his 'n hers' range, over the years he has built up quite a collection of fragrances and barring the odd one or two I have at one point or another owned all of his fragrances for men. Ice*Men was originally launched in 2007 as a follow up scent to his already popular A and B*Men fragrances which were inspired by Mugler's fascination with the super-hero ethos and imagery. The trio of fragrances are all elemental in their design and scent, A*Men is an earthy, woody fragrance, B*Men fire-y and hot, and, as it's name suggests, Ice*Men is cool and icy.
I own the 100ml EDT bottle of Ice*Men and unlike A and B*Men which come in rubber flasks this time Mugler released the fragrance in a rectangular icy blue coloured glass bottle. His familiar and often used stylised star motif is still used in the bottles design, this time featured as a crack at one side of the bottle and I assume that his intention with the design here is to be representative of a block of ice. The top of the bottle lifts off to reveal a silver, metalic nozzle and as I'm about to explain, you don't need to spray a lot of this EDT in order to get a shock to the senses.
Whilst A*Men is a rich combination of woody, earthy fragrances and B*Men hotter and spicier, Ice*Men is the fragrance equivalent of sticking your head in a freezer, that's how cold it actually is. The initial blast of a Menthol almost minty scent is striking and almost too cold to be bearable in all honesty, there's something about the top notes in this fragrance which remind me of anti-septic which I realise is perhaps not the most flattering description I could give there is something cold and chemical in there which is most definitely invigorating. If, like me, you're used to warmer scents and wear A*Men on a regular basis then Ice*Men is a surprising opposite to that fragrance and rather than being a deep scent that sits on your skin in a subtle yet noticeable manner this is a lot lighter and a heck of a lot cooler. The initial burst does evaporate quite quickly thankfully and at the heart of the scent are the more recognisable and familiar Patchouli and cinnamon notes which are regular ingredients of Mugler's other scents. The base notes fall back to the also-familiar nutmeg and woody aromas I have come to expect and whilst there's no denying that this is a complex and interesting combination of ingredients I have to admit that it's my least favourite of Mugler's fragrances.
It's just *too* cold for me, I don't like the top notes in this one at all if I'm being honest as they smell too artificial for me and are too chemical-y, I don't think they suit my skin or personality at all and as I'm more for the deeper, richer fragrances this is too far removed from my own personal preferences for me to fully enjoy. I do wear lighter fragrances in the summer months so am not opposed to fresh fragrances , without the overpowering top notes Ice*Men could be compared to Ed Hardy's Hearts and Daggers or Paul Smith's Story (both of which I also own) as they are very similar, however there's just something about the initial blast of coldness that puts me off wearing this one on a regular basis and it's just not one for me. Saying that though because I don't like wasting money I do occasionally spray Ice*Men if I've just had a shower and want to cool down a bit and as my EDT came in a gift pack along with a shower gel and deoderant I can and do layer it if I'm feeling in the right frame of mind to withstand the initial blast. It is without doubt a fragrance ideal for the hotter, summer months and on the right skin and the right person I could certainly see it appealing to someone who likes invigorating and icy fragrances although I would urge caution when spraying it as it is *very* strong and you don't want to knock-out the people around you.
It's not a cheap fragrance either, unfortunately for my wallet. I paid over £50.00 for the EDT gift set a couple of years ago and whilst I still have plenty left in my bottle this is down to the fact that I don't use it very often rather than anything else. Nowadays for the 100ml EDT you should expect to pay around £30.00 which makes it cheaper than A*Men and on a parr with B*Men. If you bought the 2006 Summer Flash release from Thierry Mugler as a limited edition fragrance you will recognise elements of Ice*Men in it as the scents are similar although Ice*Men is a lot sharper and as explained in this review, a lot cooler. Tracking down a bottle of this shouldn't be too difficult, it's a current fragrance in Mugler's catalogue and is available online and from the larger department stores and is available in both 50ml and 100ml bottles.
Surprisingly for me and a Thierry Mugler fragrance review I can't award a five star rating. I'm a huge fan as my past reviews will demonstrate but in the case of Ice*Men it's just too much for me to enjoy and whilst I understand the conceptual idea of this and the trio of three fragrances for me it's just too far removed from the earthiness and woodiness of A*Men to be one that suits me personally.
Three stars seems fair, once the inital blast has evaporated there are some nice middle and base notes in this EDT but it's an ordeal getting to them so on the whole I tend to not bother. Recommended for the right person but that's not me.
Thanks for reading my review, please note that this may also appear on ciao under my username.