Reviews of Escape for Men 
Calvin Klein (1993)

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Escape for Men by Calvin Klein

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Reviews of Escape for Men by Calvin Klein

There are 82 reviews of Escape for Men by Calvin Klein.

CK Escape is worth checking out. There is indeed some melon in there, but it's surrounded by a 'mist'-like effect of white-musk and eucalyptus and has other fruit notes the make appearances from time to time throughout the wearing. I adore this fragrance when the mood strikes. It has an almost 'damp' fruit effect with little to no piercing qualities. I think Escape would appeal to anyone with a sensitivity to citrus or wood sharpness/dryness because it's pretty much the opposite of that and IMO is a very tolerable and soft fragrance.

It really works well in the summer and, as I said, for me it's a 'mood' fragrance and it fills a wonderful niche for my collection. It's not 'watermelon' to my nose but rather 'melon', kind of like canteloup'ish in genre with other fruits joining in separately and seem to appear in and out of the musky/eucalypus-ey 'mist' for hours. It's a "pleasantly mysterious" fragrance. That's my best description of the style it's perfumed with.

There is a sweetness to it, so be aware of that when you sample, but I don't think it gets into 'sickly sweet' territory. It stays in a nice range of sweetness. The scent lasts many hours on my skin and sometimes it lasts all day.

**Edit July 29th, 2022 - After being on the shelf for 3-4 years now, the eucalyptus is very faded and I smell a dominant tobacco flower note throughout the opening and especially in the drydown. I like how this aged very much. It became more and more masculine the longer it aged on the shelf. I recommend this even more now than when it was a fresh bottle. So, if you want to make a cheap long-term investment, buy a new bottle and just let it sit for 3-4 years. It gets better.

The reputation of Calvin Klein Escape for Men (1993) is a case of near-blind brand malignment within the fragrance community, but unlike Bond No. 9 products that take heat because of the price, eccentricity and dubious morality of the house's owner, this scent takes an unfair amount of heat for being a prominent example from a house that practically invented the synthetic minimalism which dominated designers in the 90's and still haunts current designer perfumery, when the scent itself is really rather well put together. Escape for Men was fresh on the heels of Eternity for Men (1989), which revitalized a genre that had taken a backseat to powerhouses and musky floral chypres throughout the 80's. Escape was the "sophomore" to Eternity in regards to it having to follow up such a drastically different and ascetic game-changing masculine, which alongside Davidoff Cool Water (1988) was reshaping masculine perfumery into cleaner and more abstract lines. The "Age of Eternity" as I affectionately call it, would last a little over 20 years with few exceptions to this aforementioned synthetic minimalism being made by CK, and Escape asserted that direction. Like most CK scents, the reception to Escape online depends on where you go looking for reviews: customer input from shopping sites or casual hangouts online range from mostly indifferent to glowingly positive even if a bit of nostalgia informs those reactions. Elsewhere that more uppity or hobby-centric crowds gather, it's practically set on fire with criticism without actually unpacking what the scent offers, which is a great disservice. I'm not telling anyone they have to like this because I say so, but like most vintage scents regardless of decade, there is context that needs to be considered when trying to wear it.

For starters, calone-1951 was to the late 80's through mid 90's freshies what Iso E Super would be in the 2000's, and woody-ambers or ambroxan would be post 2010. Calone-1951 was the wonder chemical of most mainstream perfumers at the time and although mostly used subtly by other designers, in Escape for Men it's cranked to 11. We actually have Aramis New West (1988) to thank for this "calone overdose" as it appears in Escape for Men, because New West was the first masculine to use melon-derived calone-1951 in these doses, and it's also very prominent in that scent since it's actually one of the focal points around which New West is built. However, since Aramis as a house has a good reputation among vintage enthusiasts, everyone in the echo chamber heaps praise onto New West as the freshie "it's okay to like", which in and of itself is a form of peer-induced bias. Escape has a very similar vibe, and that isn't to say Escape is a New West clone, as it's actually a woodsier and drier alternative while Romeo Gigli Sud Est (1995) goes more herbal within the same stylistic pattern. For those who haven't sniffed Aramis New West and can't do the comparisons, I'll describe Escape as follows: Birch leaf, grapefruit, bergamot, juniper, eucalyptus, mango and calone from melon open it, with the latter dominating the other notes which only seem to be present to keep the calone from being too harsh, since there is just so much of it. The middle is balsam fir, a salty "marine note" and dihydromyrcenol, rosemary, clary sage, and vetiveryl acetate, which when the latter is combined with the oakmoss base, actually almost makes Escape a chypre itself (Sud Est goes further in this direction). The aforementioned oakmoss is joined by sandalwood, a slight amber, and even slighter patchouli. The final sandalwood stage of the dry down is very reminiscent of Chanel Égoïste (1990), which is quite the compliment for any CK fragrance to be sure. Wear time is average and projection/sillage adequate, but this is no "banger".

At the end of the day, what we have is a fairly misunderstood scent that blends a fruity melon-powered top with greens and aquatic chemicals before settling into a dry chypre hybrid base. It's still synthetic in many ways, but no more so than Eternity, and doesn't even have the fake "Kleinisms" fantasy notes found in later releases, yet it gets raked over the coals worse than some of these inferior follow-ups for the inclusion of a single blackballed aromachemical that is treated like poison by perfume snobs, when in fact it should draw criticism for being a quality rip-off of New West's primary beach bum theme. The stuff is still very painfully 90's so there's also the point of contention of whether or not you want to smell like a period regardless of the performance or style, but that's where the context I mentioned earlier comes into play. Escape is a casual warm-weather scent, as even the name implies some kind of tropical getaway, and unlike Eternity or even Obsession for Men (1986), has no place in an office or indoor setting. Even it's older Aramis-made cousin New West had more luck as a generalist due to a richer balance, but Calvin Klein Escape for Men is so bright and fruity in the top, then dry and sharp at the bottom, it would just be too tacky in an air-conditioned environment. On a hot glistening summer day, this stuff is actually amazing to behold. If you can forget the fact that this is a Calvin Klein scent or that it riffs on a competitor like so many things do nowadays, you'll see what's presented by perfumer Steve Demercado is a nice casual summer weekend in a bottle, with a cold beer by the poolside. If you can't stand calone or melon notes I can totally understand; the melon note is really going to be this juice's biggest deal breaker. Might I also add that this is likely the only CK masculine to not come in a bottle with stunning design? It's just a cylinder! Master bottle designer Pierre Dinand must have borrowed one of his old designs from his Jacomo days, that's all I'm saying. When there's trouble in paradise, wear Escape! Thumbs up.

Smells dry and brittle.
I don't smell fruit or anything aquatic. This is just bad in my opinion.
I was thinking this would be similar to Eternity...boy was I wrong.

This smells very similar to Guy La Roche's Horizon. Before I tried either one of them, I saw people describe them as having an oceanic/beach-like quality. I assumed that meant it was fresh and aquatic...I'm guessing that description means you smell like you were bathing in salt water. Maybe.
More herbal and dry, nothing coming close to being watery in my opinion.

I now know why CK has a bad reputation in the fragrance community.

Reviewing a fragrance from the house of Calvin Klein can be a little tricky at times because they try and play with one note which i have found common in 3 fragrances from that house and CK1 being one of them.
This smells too cosmetic and flowery and is more toned to the feminine side.
The scent falls linear after 45 minutes and its gone after 90.
This is something i would definitely not spend my money on.
Do not expect great results out of this bottle. An aftershower fragrance for the night time during winters is what CK Escape really is.
This scent is targeted toward the consumers who would like keeping only 1 fragrance in their closet for the sake of having one. Yes, the scent is very general.

I wont be giving this a thumbs down as there are really terrible fragrances out there and some really good designers too which have been reformulated and actually smell worse. But i cant give this a thumbs up either as this does not fetch something special for me and nor does it appeal to my fragrance likes.

The atomizer is really bad.

An inadequate orange-and-amber effort, not too far removed from Boss Orange. Not unpleasant, but does not do anything that a decent shower gel would not in terms of imparting scent to the wearer. Dull, and really rather pointless.

I always wondered if anyone could ever mix the distinct smell of bananas into a scent and actually make it smell pleasant. My first smell of Escape's top notes remind me of a spicy, fruit cocktail with those sweet bananas in it. Afterwards, it turns into a medicinal, sweet scent that does remind me of the 90s, so I have smelled this before, probably on somebody's dad. Also reminds me of Clinique's Chemistry in the drydown.

I bought this blind one day since it was on sale at a local TJ Max. At first i wasnt that fond of it, but i actually grew to like it very much. Its not my daily go to. Its a very nice summer scent, but it is also a kinda sport scent in a way. I ended up using it before and after im going to the gym. I get a few compliments here and there, its not too subtle but last a good while. If you can find it on sale or fairy cheap some where is a good buy overall.

I've owned this frag for a long time. I received a compliment once in an elevator by a very attractive babe so from that point I didn't use my own opinion of how the frag smelled. If she liked it I wore it.

This frag seems to be pretty close being unisex. CK is known for making those types of frags. My more mature nose still doesn't like it but from time to time I'll try it out to see if it gets any attention. I figured if I bought I really don't want to waste it. Out the gate it's grapefruit all the way. I really couldn't tell you about a dry down because I feel like that citrus smell sticks around a long time so it's got good longevity and I guess the sillage is above average as well.

I'm new to basenotes so be patient with me and my reviews. I'm learning to identify certain parts of frags. I'm thinking about trying this frag out again just to see if I like it. It's so strong though. I really don't think anyone cares about this frag anymore. I mean, I was 18 when I first wore it. I'm 39 now. I'll leave this one alone.

Reminds me of my youth, clubbing and tapping off ...falling head over heels for a girl and getting dumped..tried it again recently and after putting aside all the memory's this is actually a pleasent fragrance along with the best aquatic scents but with extra fruit and eucalyptus..Longivity is great and projection is very nostalgic for me that evoke fun times with the fairer sex.

Genre: SciFi Horror

The pyramid notwithstanding, Escape for Men smells like a very simple composition: mostly nutmeg, coriander, and dry woody notes played against an enormous “shower fresh” synthetic white musk that smells like dish soap on steroids. It feels like nose Steven DeMarcado was aiming at the weird steamy shower effect in Mulger Cologne, but if so, he missed the mark. Instead, Escape smells cheap and awkward, with accords too far out of balance for structural integrity and too commonplace for witty juxtaposition. At the same time dull and annoying.

The top notes of eucalyptus, birch leaf and grapefruit are a very nice, fresh and unusual idea. The drydown adds sage and fir impression with good effect, but the base with its generic patchouli and vetiver is a bit of fruity chaos and not convincing. Synthetic, for sure, but the initial phase nonetheless gives nice aromas, especially the eucalyptus - no koalas though. Although the end is not as good, this scent is just at the border between neutral and positive, but the great silage, good projection and an enormous longevity of twelve hours make it a thumbs-up. For spring or autumn.

no repeat please press escape I just smelled it but im not wowed by this fragrance its a strange light fragrance where eucalyptus plays a strange part in combining the fruits and aquatics, really 90's synthetic like a bad repetitive house dance song you cant get out of your head but annoys the hell out of you. I can understand why people love this , its different and reminds you of the 90's On the other hand its not my cup of tea.... Would be interested to smell it on others

Very surpised. Took a chance on ebay & won 2 small 15ml bottles (no other bids!!) for a song. One was obsession, which I loved when younger, but this was appalling! No resemblance to the original. But, Escape must have been an original. Excellent Grapefruit which lasts all the way through. Sillage momentous,( so spray carefully).
Probably a guilty pleasure, but hey, if one enjoys an aroma, why be sheepish?

Overripe banana. That's about it! I didn't even wait for the dry down (but that's mostly because I lost the mouillette on the way out of the shop). Not for me.

Where CK learn the art of bottling nausea. Dizzying synthetic rendition of 'tropical fruit' on the turn with some chemical anise thrown in to knock the wearer completely senseless. My temples start to throb at the merest whiff.

I love this! It might kind of hide in the back of my fragrance drawer, but when I wear it, it always reminds me of why I bought it

As I find many CK scents a little bit too one-dimensional, I did not expect to like Escape, but I do. The bitter note of a fruit plate that has gone slightly bad is there, sure, but that doesn't bother me at all. I find it strangely romantic.

I agree with one reviewer that this has just had its time. I am glad I tried it once, but it is a bit too synthetic for my taste. The grapefruit blast at the beginning is a bit much, but this fragrance then calms down into a very nice smell. Get the 50 ml bottle and reminisce a bit and then move on.

Undoubtedly, CK's Escape has been an influential product. It helped usher in the trend in masculine fragrances toward fresh, aquatic scents. It is not watery like many of its brethren. I agree with Shamu that it is not sweet, but the grapefruit is indeed prominent and while I detect the spice, I can't say that it is "super spicy" at all. The eucalyptus is vocal as well. Ultimately, this is not my kind of scent.

It was a bit more daring at the time it came out, but today it is somewhat less outstanding. I find it linear and, after a few hours, grating.

I don't have a particular axe to grind with Calvin Klein. I simply am not impressed by this offering. Longevity is tenacious so if you like this after an hour, have no fear of it wimping out for the rest of the day.

This isn't a sweet or fruity fragrance at all. Escape For Men is super spicy and dry, with a lot of woody notes in there to enhance its spiciness and dryness. The patchouli and oakmoss do a great job of balancing out the wood notes and preventing this from smelling like sandpaper.

Escape For Men is in an early Nineties, post-powerhouse style represented by fragrances like Lagerfeld Photo, New West For Him, and Horizon. It is totally masculine in all respects, so I don't understand the comments below about how women could pull off wearing this.

It might not be the most unique fragrance in the world, but it smells great, projects well, and lasts all day. What more can you ask for?

MY RATING: 8.5.10

With a Quick Whiff, Escape for men gives the impression on tropical cocktail waiting to explode. However when you rub/apply to the skin, the fragrance relax's it becomes smoother and fresher. It kinda relax's you when u smell it, the Eucalyptus note is probably the reason why. By dry-down it become a typical Vetiver, I'm really not sure what to give this Fragrance, but for those who bash Calvin Klein, Escape for men is yet another example their fragrance are not as bad as they are ridiculed

Going to have to give this one a thumbs down. Smells like a perfume, it is way to synthetic. Just a bad smell for a man. Like mos Calvin Klein fragrances, they hardly last long. Definitely pass on this.

It smells like a Boss's kind of fragrance and i don't use to love those. This is a chip aromatic-green, watery and slighty aquatic. The initial blast of greens, citrus and grapefruit produces a sort of minty, metallic, "watermelon-green apple kind" sort of smell that becomes aromatic because of the mixture of birch leaves, conifers, thyme, rosemary, coriander, resins and other different kind of herbs. The smell at this stage is almost balsamic while the following development tames the mentholated feel as well as the scent becomes  mossy with an almost evanescent  patchouli insertion. Unfortunately under my nose the woodsy temperament is overstated by the synthetic role of the aquatic notes, by the metal feel and by the angular effect of strong citruses. This boredom  lasts till the end.

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