Return From Purgatory – The Body Shop White Musk for Men Perfume Review

White Musk for Men
Plain and simple – not normally The Candy Perfume Boy’s bag…

The purgatory drawer is a lonely place, it’s where my unloved and abandoned perfume bottles go to live out the rest of their days before they inevitably pass on to the other world (eBay) and leave me forever. Very occasionally I will delve into this land of limbo in a vain attempt to rekindle long lost love, and if a bottle is particularly lucky I will have a “what the heck is this doing in here” moment and it will be fully restored, in its former glory, on my perfume shelf.

One such moment occurred very recently, in which i re-stumbled upon my bottle of The Body Shop’s White Musk for Men, a scent that I haven’t worn, or even thought about for at least two years. It was with new found curiosity that I pulled out the neglected purple bottle, spritzed cautiously and inhaled with unexpected joy – “oooh this stuff is good”! It wasn’t long before apologies had been made (mine), forgiveness offered (his) and a place on the prized perfume shelf was offered.

It’s only fair that I was forgiven, I’ve always been a big fan of The Body Shop after all. Their bath, body and fragrance products are well made, well fragranced and generally well priced – what’s not to love? White Musk for Men is no exception, it’s a well constructed, nice smelling masculine that comes in at under £20, a rarity in today’s over-diluted and overpriced industry.

White Musk for Men Header

The Notes

Top: Lavender
Heart: Geranium and Crystal Jasmine
Base: Vetiver, Sandalwood, Amber, Musk and Tonka Bean [1]

How Does it Smell?

The Body Shop released White Musk for Men in 2007, a whole 26 years after its iconic feminine counterpart. They describe White Musk for Men as “a modern, masculine and sensual scent that’s an infusion of musk and woods with crisp, fresh and aromatic notes” [2] and like its sister, White Musk for Men is a simple, no frills musk made for everyday wear.

White Musk for Men opens with a soft and supple lavender that plays to the caramelised, sugary aspect of the note rather than the menthol or herbal facets. Vetiver plays a big part right from the start and its dry, arid quality showers the composition with a ever-so-easy-on-the-nose dose of liquorice and gorgeous vetiver rooty-ness.

The heart displays a surprising floral facet, mainly in the form of a dry, powdery iris. I find this addition to be particularly clever because the darker, earthy qualities of the lavender, vetiver and iris really club together to give White Musk for Men an almost aniseed-like character, and it smells good with a capital ‘G’.

As it dries down White Musk for Men cannot hide that it is on the cheaper end of the price scale, and the base, which is a very quiet blend of dry woods with a touch of vanilla, does let the side down a bit. I can’t help but think that a touch more vanilla and tiny bit more oomph (not too much – it is a relatively sedate fragrance after all) could have finished things of rather nicely.

White Musk for Men sits comfortably in that category of fragrances that I call the “cheapie but goodies”, so if you’re looking for an effortlessly wearable, everyday masculine for a decent price then you simply cannot go wrong with White Musk for Men, it fits the bill perfectly and smells a lot better than a lot of the much pricier designer masculines on the market. Oh and it would work really well on the ladies too!


White Musk for Men is available in 100ml Eau de Toilette for £16. Matching body products are also available.


This review is based on a bottle of White Musk for Men from my own collection.


Image 1
Image 2