One of my favorite warm weather styles of perfume are the Mediterranean ones. Working from the obvious inspiration I have found the combination of fruit and green with just a whiff of the ocean to be the kind of perfume ideal for summer. One of the classic building blocks for this style is fig. Most of the time a perfume will choose to go with the richer fruit or the creamier leaves; but not both. Which was why I it was nice to see Carner Barcelona Fig Man take the route less traveled.
Fig Man is part of a trio of Mediterranean inspired perfumes released by Carner Barcelona. The other two Bo-Bo and Salado plumb the same thematic territory as Fig Man with less variation. Creative director Sara Carner claims the inspiration for Fig Man is the illustration “Homme Fig” by artist Salvador Dali. If you read that and are thinking surrealist fig; think again. This is one of those times where I never get the connection the press release tries to impart on me. This is far from a surrealistic experience. I could claim it is the opposite a more realistic version. The brand has not revealed the perfumer, but I will update when I find out. (Update: The perfumer is Yann Vasnier)
One of the clever twists in Fig Man is the choice to lead with the fruit instead of the fig leaves. The reason why is it allows for a very nice interaction between the ripe fig and cardamom. The fig has this richness which is uplifted by the cardamom. It takes the lush quality and gives it a freshness more like picking the fruit right from the tree and eating it. In the heart the fig leaves come forward with a lot of presence. This is the creamy slightly green version of this ingredient. It takes in the cardamom and fig with a warm embrace. As you luxuriate in the uber-fig accord from far off an ocean breeze swirls through. The base accord brings you down to earth with patchouli sweetened by tonka bean.
Fig Man has 8-10 hour longevity and average sillage.
Fig Man is a perfume for people who love fig fragrances. It is like having an all-you-can-smell version of the ingredient. Wearing this in the early summer it just my kind of thing. This realistic fig is a beauty.
Disclosure: This review is based on a sample I purchased.