I WAS at a friend’s place when I saw and picked out his bottle of Calvin Klein’s Obsession. This perfume is a classic warm and spicy fragrance that generates a lot of talk among fragrance lovers because it has since been reformulated.
Curious to smell if it was not the original formula, I asked permission from my friend if I could spritz it on my wrist. To my surprise, when I took off the cap there was no spray. It was not an Eau de Toilette but it was an aftershave.
Aftershave, as its name suggests, is a cosmetics product applied to the face after shaving. Aftershaves are not strictly perfumes, but since they could be mostly composed of alcohol and scented like perfumes, it is easy for fragrance houses to incorporate them in their product lines. The alcohol and other ingredients such as witch hazel have antiseptic and astringent properties that help prevent the nasty on the skin after a rough shaving session.
With these being said, we get to ask: are aftershaves useless? They certainly have their own purpose, and depending on your needs you may want to add it to your skincare routine. A good aftershave can help keep the face young and healthy after shaving. The question here is, are designer aftershaves, like my friend’s bottle of Obsession, worth the money?
For one thing, I prefer that if something is going to my face, it is from a reputable and responsible skincare line. I have very sensitive skin. I avoid alcohol on my face. The products I use are also usually fragrance-free, so as to avoid allergies and other reactions.
An aftershave by a perfume house does not strike me as something I would see as ideal for my face. There are tons of aftershave products that are gentle and are advertised as such. I’d rather save my money for those if I really want a product like this.
For another thing, aftershaves don’t work best as fragrances. Sure, the essence of Obsession may be condensed into this bottle of aftershave, but I won’t expect it to perform well throughout the day. This product might smell like a perfume but it is not formulated as a traditional perfume. It is cologne at best, and if I really wanted to smell great, I’d purchase the Eau de Toilette version instead.
I’ll review the scent of Obsession some other time, but for now, I suggest you stay away from perfume-inspired aftershaves and stick to using perfumes and aftershaves separately. Keep in mind that there’s a price tag that comes with the name attached to the aftershave. Designer fragrance aftershaves are definitely not ideal for everyone.