There are certain smells that seem to give me flashbacks of when I was a kid whenever I smell them. Today, I am wandering the aisles of Rite Aid while Terry picked up his blood pressure medicine and I happened upon something I've not really thought about in years in the shaving and men's skin care section.
During the late 1980's, most of us kids didn't know much about colognes and scents for men other than whatever our dad's used. My grandfather on my mom's side always smelled like Old Spice, a scent that I don't really mind but a product that I don't seek out myself. Somewhere between the age of 11 and 14 I was obsessed with Calvin Klein's Eternity as well as Brut by Faberge. Eternity was a bit pricey and the knock offs were nothing like the real stuff. I think I was into Brut because of the fact that it was a sponsor of The Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. The owner of the Faberge company at the time actually owned the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling promotion and used the show as an advertisement for his products. At the time, Brut was cheap and Eternity not so much. To this day, I both scents are among my favorite scents.
So I'm standing in Rite Aid and I see a bottle of Aqua Velva. My dad wore this stuff ALL THE TIME. I loved wearing it when I was a kid, not because I loved the smell (which I did and still do) but it gave me the sense that I could be like my dad if I wore it. I really had no clue the Ice Blue liquid in the glass bottle was not as much meant to be a cologne as it was meant to soothe razor burned skin. Believe it or not, Aqua Velva was originally meant to be a mouthwash...I don't think I could ever get up the nerve to try it as a mouthwash. The bottle has been redesigned since I last saw it, it's no longer made of glass and the logo is slightly different. The color seemed to be a deeper blue than what I remember, maybe the fact that it's in clear plastic rather than the thick cloudy glass they used to use made a difference in the shade of blue???
The color, label and bottle are different so I decided I'll open it up. Luckily, it's one of those bottles that has no seal so if you open it in the store, you've not made it unsaleable if you decide you don't want it. OMG...The scent is exactly as I remembered. It's a very distinct, strong, crisp and clean smell that I just really couldn't describe if I tried. The scent actually sent me back to a time when I was six years old, listening to my dad hum a Conway Twitty tune in the bathroom while shaving and the smell followed him after he came out of the bathroom. Right next to the $4.99 bottle of Aqua Velva was a $4.49 bottle of Rite Aid's version called Renewal After Shave Arctic Blue...50 cents cheaper and no where close to the scent of what it was meant to mimic. Why exactly does Rite Aid feel that they need to compete with something already so cheap? I was really tempted to buy the bottle of Aqua Velva but thought of the forty or so bottles of cologne ranging from drug store to designer scents which I currently own. Of course now that I'm not in the store, as weird as it sounds, I actually can't get the smell out of my head. Not that it's lingering or anything, just that it's a smell that seems almost comforting to me. Well, needless to say...next time I'm out, I'll have a one more scent added to my manly scent collection.
So is there a scent that sends you back to your childhood?