Homemade Gifts for Men

Herbal products don't have to smell foo-foo and feminine. Make these great-smelling homemade gifts for men for your favorite man.

| June/July 2005

  • Handmade Gifts For Men
    Some recent studies say vanilla and cinnamon scents make men feel more passionate. Another says lavender and pumpkin pie make an even more potent combination. Play around with these herbal scents for perfect handmade gifts for men.

  • Handmade Gifts For Men

Remember that corny line from the Irish Spring commercials, spoken by a buxom Irish lass taking a whiff of a bar of deodorant soap? A few decades back when the ad first aired, bath soap with a masculine scent was a new idea. Given how strong a man’s, er, natural scent can be, one wonders why the concept hasn’t caught on. Shouldn’t there be manly-man bath salts, candles, air fresheners and potpourris...ones that women like, too?

4 Homemade Gifts for Men

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Scented Gift Ideas for Men

Of course you enjoy him smelling great, but many men also enjoy scents and fragrances—when they have some non-girly options. My boyfriend, for example, wouldn’t have to choose between a closet that smells like eau de sweat sock or one that reeks of lily of the valley, and he might not avoid scented baths in fear of smelling like his grandmother's rose water for the rest of the day.

5 Scented Body-Care Products for Men

Last Christmas, I saw new possibilities for guy-friendly herbal scents. My sister-in-law and self-described “soap bum,” Jenny Hall, was generously dispensing her handmade soaps. In the mix was one she called, “Smelly Man Suds,” a lye soap with patchouli and lavender essential oils. It had a heady, but decidedly masculine, scent. “If you pick carefully, you can make all kinds of fragrances guys would like with essential oils,” she told me. “And of course you can use the same oils for lots of stuff, way beyond soaps.”

That’s when we decided to collaborate on some scented gift ideas for men. I picked Jenny’s brain for her favorite manly essential oil combinations and added a couple of homegrown herb ideas. We did some research and found some studies that say vanilla and cinnamon scents make men feel more passionate. Another said that lavender and pumpkin pie make an even more potent combination, so we added pie spices such as clove to our arsenal. Most important, Jenny has tested these scents on regular guys—drummers, doctors, a gardener or two. Even when they didn’t create an instant Don Juan, these aromas did get some appreciative sniffs—and some regular use in the sweaty, mildewy male domains in both our households.



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