Bench Beautiful Boy by Furne One

Bench Beautiful Boy by Furne One

Bench Beautiful Boy by Furne One

Today, I am going to review our latest acquisition, Bench Beautiful Boy by Furne One.

First, a little introduction on the brand, Bench.

Bench is a Philippine fashion brand started in 1987 by Ben Chan. It is hugely popular among teens and adults with its affordable casual clothing, underwear, and fragrances. Think of it as Philippines’ Aeropostale, or H&M.

When it comes to fragrances, Bench started with body sprays like Bench Atlantis, or Bench 8. Later on, it introduced more lasting EdTs, often fronted by popular Filipino celebrities like Richard Gomez, Piolo Pascual, or Manny Pacquiao. You can say that Bench started the celebu-scent trend here in the Philippines.

Lately, Bench started working with Filipino fashion designers for its fragrances. Bench collaborated with Rajo Laurel, Michael Cinco, and for Beautiful Boy, with Furne One.

Furne One showing Amato 2013 collections

Furne One showing Amato 2013 collections*

Furne One is a Dubai based Filipino fashion designer known for his intricate beadwork, and delicate laser cut designs. To my untrained eye, I see a lot of Alexander McQueen influences in his body of work. I would say his works are very dramatic, very theatrical, very technical, and definitely, very haute couture.

Bench Beautiful Boy by Furne One, then, is an offspring of a casual brand and a haute couture fashion house.

Beautiful Boy, according to the Bench site, is a woody citrus scent of grapefruit, musk, pepper and iris.

Beautiful Boy, on me, smells soapy and clean specially in the beginning. I am reminded of the Clean scent, or of detergents, but my partner is reminded of Bvlgari Pour Homme. True enough, there is a part of Beautiful Boy’s development that resembles that of Bvlgari Pour Homme.

Later in the day, Beautiful Boy dries down to a musky, a bit sweet, scent.

There might be traces of grapefruit, iris, and pepper, but I have to smell hard to detect them. It lasts fairly long, but not long enough to cover my 8 hour work shift.

As a fragrance, it really is a scent for the beautiful boy next door, or the class heart-throb. It is pleasant, clean, never offensive, never daring.

I do not know the extent of work done by Furne One with this collaboration but I felt that he just lent his name for this fragrance. To me, Beautiful Boy hardly represents Furne One’s aesthetics or brand. Beautiful Boy, to me, is the opposite of Furne One.

But I have no regrets.

Because of Beautiful Boy, I discovered that Furne One have his own fragrances from his fashion house Amato; Amato Argento and Amato Oro. I am very much interested to try those fragrances. I would love to experience how Furne One translates his ideas to perfumes.

Bench Beautiful Boy is available where there is a Bench store, online, in 70 ml for $17.00. That’s another reason why I should not have regrets.

image from


SOTD: A Burst of Freshness from Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien

AG Eau d'Hadrien

AG Eau d’Hadrien

Good Morning, Manilans!
Can you feel the summer heat already? I do!

And so, to feel fresh in this sweltering heat, I am wearing the classic Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien. Sicilian lemons, citron, cypress, and ylang-ylang. What could be more refreshing than those?

*image from

Vetiver Vert by Czech & Speake

Last weekend, we packed our bags and trooped down south, to the countryside of Bohol in Central Visayas.  We went to see the Chocolate Hills, which are not so chocolatey at this time of the year. Instead, they’re of lush, green color. Very refreshing sight, I say.

Afterwards, we passed by a highway in Bilar, lined with mahogany trees, their leaves starting to brown, and fall. It is a stark contrast to the view of the Chocolate Hills.

Back here in Manila, I immediately looked for a scent that would remind me of our countryside tour. I looked for something woodsy, earthy, and yet green. And I found this,


Vetiver Vert by Czech & Speake.

Vetiver Vert by Czech & Speake opens with a very fresh citrus. I think it’s bergamot… I think I smell crushed leaves, bergamot blossoms, or squeezed rinds. Definitely, it is a very refreshing scent, as refreshing as the sight of the verdant Chocolate Hills. Smelling Vetiver Vert, to me, evokes the smell of the leaves of the trees, after the morning rain, on a springtime.

Then, it get’s a little sweet, and woodsy, and earthy. It might be the sandalwood. It is very masculine, and very classic. If I may compare it to our trip, it’s the feeling when passing by the mahogany lined highways of Bilar.

Then finally, at least to me, it goes back to where it started. It goes back to being green, fresh, and citrusy.

Vetiver Vert by Czech & Speake lasts long, well enough for an 8 day shift in the office.  It is very manly, and very classic. It is perfect for the office, or the gym, or a casual weekend date.  

And though it is a vetiver, it is unlike the vetiver of Guerlain. I think it is a cross between a vetiver fragrance, and an Italian bergamot fragrance!

Citrus Paradisi by Czech & Speake

I woke up very early today to catch up with my boss in the US. I was still very sleepy when I put on my newest sample scent, Czech & Speake Citrus Paradisi.

I’m so glad I did. It perked me up! It energized me, more than the cheap coffee I got from 7-11.

Czech & Speake Citrus Paradisi, like Neroli, is a linear citrus scent.  It’s citrus from top to the base notes. No evolution here.  Just plain and simple citrus.

Unlike Neroli, however, Citrus Paradisi derives its scent from the fruit, and not from blossoms. The smell of the blossoms and citrus fruits maybe similar, but up close, you can tell that the two have their own distinct characteristics.

Czech & Speake Citrus Paradisi, on the opening, bursts forth with the zing and zest of a grapefruit. It’s like you squeezed out a grapefruit peel until all the oils come out. It is that sort of freshness.  And it stays that way, citrusy,  light and fresh.

With mercury levels zooming to  36 degrees here in Manila, Czech & Speake Citrus Paradisi is just the perfect scent!

*photo from

A Runner’s Scent: Lacoste Essential

The runner, of course, is me.


Way before I got so obsessed with perfumes, I use Lacoste Essential, which my Tita Daisy gives me during Christmas. I use it at work, at the gym, and during my road races. Well, I prefer to leave a trail of scent than let other runners eat my dust. Kidding aside, Lacoste Essential really smells good, clean, and very non-offensive.

Lacoste Essential starts of very citrusy, very fresh, and green (think leaves :D). Immediately, you would think that it is a scent for teenage boys, for jocks, or gym dudes as it is very sporty.

Later on the development, the citrus mellows down a bit, and it becomes more spicy. Then, it fades to something woody, green woody, I suppose.

Even though it fades into something woody or mellow, Lacoste Essential re-emerges or re-releases the top notes when you do some intense physical activity like running, or dance workouts. This is something that I really like as 3 sprays can last for more than 10 hours!

I love Lacoste Essential as a casual scent, but I love it more as an active, sporty scent. I might actually use it on my next race next month!