I’ve become a bit obsessed with working out. 12 months ago I worked out once approximately every, well, 12 months. Now I’m on a regular cycle of six workouts a week. The transformation in my physical and mental health has been tremendously positive and I generally feel much better about how I look, and how I feel, despite the fact that I still have a long way to go to meet my goals. So every week I run 5K twice (not bad for someone who previously despised running), do two days of weights, one day of core strength and on my sixth day, a mixture of all of these things dependent on my mood. I may ache pretty much all of the time but I feel fantastic for it.
Since I’ve been going to the gym regularly I’ve turned my life into one of routines. I have routines for working out, for eating, for the clothes I wear (basically EVERYTHING is Superdry, I don’t know why, I must like the colour orange) and for the scented things I use. So, in this article I want to briefly take you though the contents of my gym bag to show you some of the scented (and non-scented) things I swear by. There are things for the skin and for the shower, and of course there’s scent too, because I’m The Candy Perfume Boy and I kind of have a thing for fragrance… Anyway, into the gym bag we go!
I’m not a skincare expert so I will keep this section brief (my area of expertise is scent – with skincare I just know what I like). There are four products that I always put in my gym bag; three from CHANEL and one from Lab Series. The CHANEL products are part of my daily routine, so if I’m showering at the gym, they get thrown in to the bag for use. The two I swear by are the Hydra Beauty Micro Serum (£70/30ml) which is a really wet serum that provides a wave of hydration to les face and La Solution 10 (£62/30ml) – a supple moisturiser composed of ten materials that is great for sensitive skin. I use them both together and wouldn’t want to be without them.
When I’m feeling particularly fancy and feel like I deserve a lovely little skin treat after a hard work out I use the Lab Series Treat Solid Water Essence (£39/150ml) to wake up my skin. By using ginseng and caffeine, it stimulates your skin cells to make you look less tired and more fresh. I’m not sure if it does, but it certainly feels lovely and cooling, which is just what I need when I step into the changing rooms looking like a sweaty toilet brush. Basically, it’s like throwing a bucket of water on your face except less messy and more socially acceptable in an athletic environment.
But my final and most important step is always hand cream and my go-to gym hand cream is La Crème Main by CHANEL (£45/50ml). When you’re at the gym your hands take a real battering, coming in to contact with a whole range of friction-heavy surfaces that can leave them feeling very dry. Enter the egg-shaped wonder of La Crème Main, a lightweight but hardworking hand cream that absorbs quickly and brings life back to tired, battered hands. It never leaves my gym bag.
I think I can say that I’m probably the only guy in my gym that regularly packs a bottle of Twilly d’Hermès Body Shower Cream (200ml) and that’s possibly what makes me so damn cool (joke). That’s right, me and that pink bottle prance happily into the shower cubicle for some ginger-soaked tuberose cleansing. I reviewed the Twilly Le Bain line recently so I won’t go in to too much detail, but I will say that after a hard work out, the zingy flowers of Twilly make for a perfectly invigorating experience
My staple shower gel however, comes from MUGLER in the form of the A*Men Hair and Body Wash (£21/200ml). This has been a favourite for many years and if you’re wondering whether it’s as nuclear as the EDT then let me reassure you that this Body Wash celebrates the fresher side of A*Men, with the lavender and mint taking centre stage. The clear blue gel lathers up generously to a fresh wave of cool mint with hints of the coffee, patchouli and chocolate that represent A*Men’s underpinnings. It’s what I use in the shower when I want to channel Superman, The Silver Surfer and The Hulk, which is surprisingly often actually.
And finally we move to the scent – the most important part of anything in life! I’m a firm believer that it’s vital to smell good in the gym. Others may disagree and many say that it’s not right to wear a loud fragrance because it’s unpleasant for others. I do not follow this school of thinking because the gym is full of bad smells emitted by bodies (I will leave your imagine to fill in the gaps as to what these smells may be) so the way I see it, is that my massive cloud of ANGEL on the treadmill cannot be worse than sweat and flatulence (other people’s, not mine). This is not up for discussion.
So yes, I wear fragrance at the gym and I don’t necessarily go for something super light either, but I do opt for fresher scents that I want to smell on me when I start to get moving. My gym staple is A*Men Ultra Zest by MUGLER (I know, there are no surprises here). I love Ultra Zest at the gym because it has a sticky, marmalade-like overdose of mandarin and blood orange over the signature gourmand base of A*Men. It just smells so juicy and vibrant, with a power that keeps me going. Most importantly though, it matches the orange detailing on my gym bag and one does like to be matchy-matchy.
I’m not always in the mood for MUGLER though (shock horror, I know) and sometimes I need something a little bit fresher. But I don’t want just any cologne or aquatic – I want something that smells fancy (it’s vital to demonstrate some olfactory posing in all situations) so my fresh go-to is Eau des Merveilles Bleue by Hermès (£74/50ml EDT). The original Eau des Merveilles, with its salty ambergris and pyrotechnic orange peel is one of my all-time faves, and this Bleue interpretation plunges it deep into cool, musky waters. It’s like a spray-on white t-shirt and it’s the best thing to give one a freshly showered feel in the gym, served with a touch of luxury.
Finally scent-wise, I always carry a perfume to wear when I leave the gym and more often not, that fragrance is A*Men (£42/50ml EDT). It tends to be that I’m always craving it after showering with the Shower Gel, so in my gym bag it stays. A*Men is basically spray-on muscles anyway and with it’s robust blend of mint, lavender, coffee, caramel, chocolate, patchouli and tar, it’s the perfect thing to leave one feeling a bit butch as they swan out of the changing rooms with their protein shake in hand.
What’s in your Gym Bag?
Let me know what wonderful things you carry in your gym bag in the comments below!
Samples via; Lab Series, CHANEL, Hermès and MUGLER.