Given the immense popularity of Pink Sugar, the only surprise is how long it took Aquolina to come up with a follow-up fragrance for men. Blue Sugar launched late last year, and takes its cues from Pink Sugar's blend of caramel and vanilla. Other notes include bergamot, tangerine leaves, star anise, ginger, licorice, patchouli, lavender, heliotrope, coriander, cedar and tonka bean.
So, how to do a cotton candy fragrance for men? Well, for starters, tone down the berries. Then, amp up the woods and spices, and add an extra dose of patchouli to give the whole thing a darker cast. That pretty much sums up the story of Blue Sugar, which manages to retain the caramelized sugar-candy vibe of Pink Sugar without feeling at all girly.
Blue Sugar is still sweet, mind you, but the woods temper the intensity of the sweetness, and first the heavier citrus notes, and later the lavender, lend a brisk, clean feel that is missing from Pink Sugar. Blue Sugar is also spicier than its feminine counterpart. The licorice/anise notes are especially more noticeable, so while it still smells like a dessert, it could pass for something marginally more sophisticated than cotton candy. It smells vaguely like maple sugar candy flavored with black licorice, if such a thing existed.
I don't love it, but I like it much better than Pink Sugar, which is simply too overwhelmingly sweet for my own tastes. The scorched undertones from Pink Sugar are absent, and it is decidedly more masculine, although not so much so that a woman couldn't wear it. I have seen comparisons to both Lolita Lempicka Au Masculin and Thierry Mugler A*Men, and the references are apt, but Blue Sugar is a simpler, sweeter, more youthful fragrance than either.
Blue Sugar is an Eau de Toilette and the lasting power is good. It is available now at sephora in 50 and 100 ml spray bottles.