A bracing spin in an old-fashioned barber's chair, a New England train ride on a brisk autumn day and a crisp, congratulatory handshake from a favorite uncle -- those are just a few of the images conjured up by the Motley's latest cologne – the fourth from the Silver Lake-based etailer of men's grooming goods. – that launched Tuesday.
The new scent, dubbed Cyprus, expands the olfactory universe that the Motley crew began charting a year ago with the launch of its first name-brand scent, Atlas. Like that one (and the two that followed) this one was developed by L.A.-based perfumer Jacqueline Steele. She was on hand, along with the rest of the Motley crew – founding siblings Matt and Madison Ruggieri and their business partner actor Darren Criss ("Glee") -- at a launch party for the new scent held Monday evening at the Line Hotel in Koreatown.
"Shaving cream was the starting point," Steele said. "There's something about the scent of shaving creams like Barbasol that makes you think fresh, clean and well-groomed. It's the symbol of the American man.… If I was in a meeting and somebody smelled like this I would trust him."
Steele said she started with base notes that included tonka bean and lavender and went from there. The result is a complex fragrance that manages to evoke feelings both autumnal and vernal – dry pine needles, cedar, a dash of ginger.
"To me it's green trees, camping and hiking -- almost like rubbing a tree branch on your arm," said Matt Ruggieri. "It's what I'd want to be wearing on a train to upstate New York in the fall for Thanksgiving break."
Criss also waxed seasonal about the scent. "I associate it with the East Coast and the changing of the seasons and that whole palette of colors," he said. "This has a colorful sense – that's S-E-N-S-E – it's an olfactory bonanza. And it's a good sequel [to the other scents]; it kind of fills in the white space a little bit."
When asked what kind of guy might wear the new scent, perhaps Madison Ruggieri summed it up best. "I think it's a very appropriate scent for the young legal professional, crisp but not too much. Kind of like an Oxford shirt."
Cyprus cologne by the Motley availble via themotley.com in 1-ounce splash-on ($50) and 2-ounce spray-on ($105) sizes.