The Valet. Guide
to Vetiver Fragrances

Best men's vetiver colognes

The Valet. Guide to Vetiver Fragrances

The best vetiver scents and why the masculine fragrance works for any guy

What᾿s the secret to smelling “manly”? Viper's blood? Chainsaw oil? Simply skipping a few showers? Fortunately, it's none of those things. Ask any nose (to use the technical term for people who create colognes), and they'll tell you it's vetiver. A natural oil from the roots of a tropical grass native to India, this popular ingredient appears in around a fifth of all male fragrances.

"Vetiver is an ingredient with a lot of complexities," says Emmanuelle Moeglin, founder of bespoke fragrance service the Experimental Perfume Club. "The first impression is fresh and earthy before settling into a deep and warm woody note with smoky and nutty nuances."

With as much staying power on the skin as they do on the shelf (just look at some of the classic options below), no bathroom cabinet is complete without a vetiver fragrance. It makes you feel sharp and sophisticated, even if you're just hanging around the house on the weekend. Here are the six best examples to wrap your nose around.

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The Best
Vetiver Fragrances

Creed Original Vetiver

A stalwart of the scent world, Creed has produced countless course-changing fragrances over its 260-year history. True to form, Original Vetiver was the first to make use of all three parts of the vetiver plant: the earthy root, the verdant leaves and the rich heart. The result is a fresh juice that's ideal for warmer weather.

$310 at Saks Fifth Avenue

Tom Ford Grey Vetiver

It's easy to see (or rather, smell) why Tom Ford fragrances are so popular. Released in 2009, Grey Vetiver is yet another example of a scent that's almost as sharp as the designer's suits. A sophisticated blend of vetiver with salty notes and shiny citrus accords—wear this, and it'll be the first thing people compliment.

$180 at Nordstrom

Malin + Goetz Vetiver
Eau de Parfum

If you want a fragrance that's long-lasting, this is your pick for a scent to endure from morning to night. This is also a touch lighter and fresher than some of the heavier scents—the typical earthiness of vetiver is cut with a dash of citrus and warm amber.

$95 at Malin + Goetz

FYI

Vetiver grass

Once vetiver grass is harvested, the roots are distilled for over 30 hours to extract the rich, fragrant oil.

Vetiver grass

Jo Malone London
Vetiver & Golden Vanilla

British perfume house Jo Malone is responsible for creating some of the best double acts since Kenan & Kel. Adding to a line-up that includes Oud & Bergamot, Basil & Neroli and Myrrh & Tonka, the brand's latest concoction balances the heady vetiver note with sweet golden vanilla.

$130 at Jo Malone London

Guerlain Vetiver

Guerlain Vetiver may date back to 1959, but like a pair of 501s, it's the very definition of a timeless classic. Considered by perfume geeks to be the benchmark, it's a woodsy juice pepped-up by notes of tobacco, citrus and spice. Basically, a walk through a forest followed by a pipe in an armchair. Just, bottled.

$75 at Neiman Marcus

Frederic Malle
Vetiver Extraordinaire

The work of renowned nose Dominique Ropion (who has created fragrances for Yves Saint Laurent, Burberry and Paco Rabanne), Frederic Malle's Vetiver Extraordinaire was never going to be anything but a hit. Soft and elegant, the usual earthy accord is tempered by creamy notes of sandalwood, cedar and myrrh.

From $67 at Frederic Malle

NOTE: Items featured in this story are independently selected by the editorial team. Purchasing via our links may earn Valet. a portion of the sale, which helps fund our editorial mission.

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