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Five minutes with Benny Castles from WORLD


Five minutes with Benny Castles from WORLD
With a plethora of men’s scents hitting shelves each month, buying the man in your life a fragrance has become an often perplexing affair. We caught up WORLD designer and fragrance aficionado, Benny Castles, and find out how to decipher the art of gifting fragrance.

First thing’s first: scent is so personal; should we even be attempting to buy fragrance for someone else?

It completely depends on how well you know the gentleman in question, and of course how confident you might be in predicting his sensibilities. I think because of how personal fragrance is it makes an amazing gift, but it is important to include a gift exchange and tester strips of the fragrance in the wrapping so before the product is opened he might smell it first…and if it is not perfect, you can go back into the store and enjoy the whole fragrance buying experience again – together!

Is buying something that you personally like the smell of the best way to approach buying a fragrance for the man in your life?

There is certainly a school of thought that says – you’ve got to smell him so make sure you like it too! Part of fragrance is the attraction it may create, humans are attracted to one another through our own scent and so fragrance can assist and embolden this attraction. Keep in mind that men enjoy being told they smell nice and so if he sees a smile on your face and receives a
compliment he will enjoy wearing it. A gift that gives back!

Where do you start with the man who has never owned a fragrance before? How about the man who’s a bit of a connoisseur?

A man who has not paid any interest to fragrance is the perfect blank canvas, make sure to explain why the fragrance you have chosen is special, don’t expect him to all of sudden to turn
into a connoisseur. Explain that what you have bought him is the Bentley of fragrance and what he was wearing was the Diahatsu of fragrance – he’ll get it. If your gentleman is something of an expert, be sure to do your homework, what does he wear, which fragrance has he mentioned  recently, where does he usually shop – and be sure to rely on good service and knowledgeable shop keepers to assist you, explain all these things and let the team in store work their magic!

Do you have any easy tips to stop us from getting it completely wrong?
Only buy fragrance, if you think he’ll appreciate it. Some guys may not say it, but they love being educated and shown something new – by nature men are open to new ideas…but sometimes the Repco voucher, whilst boring and of no interest to you, is the right choice. Be careful with the kind of scent you buy, think about what flavours and foods he likes, the more you think about him, the better your choice will be. But in the end, go with your instincts don’t overthink or confuse yourself – more often than not it is first scent you are drawn to that is the right one. Another thing to keep in mind is the look and feel of the bottle, we are more inclined to enjoy wearing fragrance if we enjoy the visual aspect of the bottle and look forward to picking up off the shelf and applying, if the bottle goes against his aesthetic, it’ll sit in the box in the bathroom cabinet.


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