Don’t let people tell you your 30s will be the best time of your life in a tone that suggests your looks will fade so you better find inner peace. Vicki’s Pick is a weekly beauty column that features Vicki’s all-time favourite beauty products and latest discoveries for women in their 30s who plan on staying pretty on the outside for a long, long time. Inner peace is optional.
Back in my early 20s, after a particularly traumatizing breakup – as all breakups in your early 20s tend to be – I found one of my ex-boyfriend’s sweaters in my apartment and cried into it dramatically only to then realize it still smelled like him; like Romeo y Julieta Cuban cigars, dry-cleaning paid for by his parents, Chanel Pour Monsieur, and that somehow soothing smell of the sweat of a trustfund kid who has absolutely no financial worries. I cried harder and listened to David Gray’s cover of Soft Cell’s “Say Hello Wave Goodbye” and vowed to stop wearing my own perfume (at the time Annick Goutal Petite Cherie) for fear of tainting the last relic of the relationship.
Now, as stories of early 20s go, I met a much cooler guy five weeks later and quickly buried the sweater in my laundry basket and shrunk it accidentally at the laundromat a week later in a load of darks. Oops! But in that five week period of not wearing my regular fragrance, I got overly attached to so-called manly smells and decided to start wearing them occasionally myself. By age 24, I was all about John Varvatos’ signature fragrance for men, and then at around age 28 I switched to anything by Gucci for men. I’m not really sure if it’s some kind of subconscious gesture of heartbreak prevention, or if I was just a huge private men’s club-going player in my past life. Either way, nothing makes me more excited when it comes to beauty discoveries than finding a new “manly” fragrance to love.
Enter my new favourite: Kiehl’s Vanilla and Cedarwood Aromatic Mist. This fragrance is unisex, so it’s got a perfect subtle hint of iris in it to make it sexily androgynous. Otherwise, the Ugandan vanilla and smoky cedarwood aromas fused together give off a subtle tobacco scent, which is remarkably hot on a woman. Or at least that’s what the really creepy guy who sat beside me on the subway today told me.