Standard Recommendations – Anthony New York – Anthony Fresh 5

Anthony Fresh 5If your grooming regimen closely resembles my grooming regimen from approximately 10 years ago, you would probably agree it consists of the basics: soap, water, and body lotion. In my early 30s, I resolved myself to allocating the proper attention to my standard grooming routine and introducing a few upgrades to my bathroom flow. Moisturizers, exfoliating scrubs, cleansers balms, etc. were all married into my newly established lifestyle of hygienic care. Now, if you find yourself weighing whether or not your medicine cabinet or dopp kit requires a bit of retooling; the Anthony Fresh 5 Kit is a fantastic introduction into the curious world of men’s grooming.

The Anthony Fresh 5 kit will introduce you to a few quintessential grooming products that will instantly supplant your bar soap as the king in the shower. Because, for all intents and purposes, your bar soap is probably functioning as your body wash, your shaving cream, and your shampoo. Not good. A well-groomed gentleman requires specific hygienic tools to perform specific hygienic tasks. And this brings us to the Fresh 5 kit. The standouts in the Anthony Fresh 5 Kit is definitely the facial scrub, cleanser, and moisturizer. When used in tandem, my face was left with a feeling of freshness and softness.

The facial scrub and moisturizer both had a pleasant fruity scent that lightly faded away soon after application. The scrub had a light grainy feel, but not too rough where it irritated my skin. I was surprised that the facial scrub actually produced a moderately rich lather when worked into the skin, much more so than the cleanser. The cleanser, odorless by all accounts, washed away cleanly without any evidence of residue. The same can be stated of the facial scrub. The body wash is best used with a body sponge (or loofah if you’re that particular) to maximize its lathering capabilities. It has a mild woody fragrance and the eucalyptus really does wake up the skin. The shave cream had a light lather – I wish it was a bit richer – but is did provide more than sufficient protection for my skin during shaving. All in all, this is a great starter kit to own, give as a gift, or accompany you during travel.

Product Contents

  • Facial Scrub 2 fl oz
  • Shave Cream 1.0 oz
  • Invigorating Rush Hair + Body Wash 3.4 oz
  • Glycolic Facial Cleanser 1.0 oz
  • All Purpose Facial Moisturizer 1.0 oz

Retails at $30.00 (a $55.00 value) and is available Nordstrom, Sephora, Anthony.com, and other fine men’s stores

Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

About Face – Rejuvenating Skincare – Filorga’s Hydra Hyal Skin Serum

FilorgaWell, a gentleman learns something new and extraordinary almost every day. Now, willingly admitting full ignorance, I was oblivious to the existence of a certain molecule that is being touted as an effective tool to wage war against aging and wrinkles. Naturally occurring within eye tissue, human skin, and connective tissues throughout the human body, this wonder compound is hyaluronic acid. Until I started this site, I truly did not afford any attention to the matter of aging skin. However, my perspective has evolved over the years, and as my years slowly advance, I am far more conscious regarding the health of my skin. Many men would shun such affectation, however, showcasing a mug like Clint Eastwood really isn’t a personal preference – a Nelson Mandela glow is more my speed.

Enter Filorga Laboratory and its newest skincare offering Hydra-Hyal. Hydra-Hyal boasts 4 types of highly concentrated hyaluronic acids that promise to replenish, hydrate, plump, and smooth the skin. Utilizing two plant-based boosters (galanga leaves and seaweed), Hydra-Hyal pledges to stimulate the production of naturally occurring hyaluronic acid in the dermis and epidermis, and restore skin’s natural reserves. Formulated as a serum, as it is applied topically to the skin, the molecule also helps retain water in the skin’s surface, thus skin cells are hydrated and dryness alleviated.

The result: a supposedly rejuvenated and youthful appearance. Hydra-Hyal arrives in a cool frosted glass tube with a metallic pump top. When the top is compressed, a preset amount fills the dropper for usage. It is a small amount, but it certainly spreads generously on one’s face. The texture is slick, but not tremendously oily. It readily absorbs into the skin absent bothersome residue or film. The scent is surprisingly fresh with slight floral notes that smells great. A word of note: The serum should be utilized in conjunction with a regular moisturizer during your grooming regimen.

Product Specifications

  • Hydrating, smoothing and plumping: 4 types of hyaluronic acid deeply penetrate the skin, instantly hydrating, smoothing and plumping it.
  • Long-lasting, youth-enhancing effect: 2 plant-based boosters stimulate the production of hyaluronic acid in the dermis and epidermis in order to restore the skin’s natural reserves.
  • A radiance-boosting effect: The combination of a skin-renewal ingredient and a revitalizing NCTF© complex restore the skin’s fresh-looking, clear appearance.
  • Hydra-Hyal contains Hyaluronic Acid and NCTF®, Filorga’s proprietary technology/mesotherapy complex containing revitalizing and anti-aging ingredients, which together to stimulate the synthesis of collagen, restore the skin’s fresh-looking and clear appearance.

There is a popular saying in African-American culture that jokingly declares that “black don’t crack”. Heavily relying on the notion that our melanin shields us from harmful UV radiation, it is generally accepted that our skin ages very well. Nevertheless, some added assistance cannot hurt. Filorga’s Hydra-Hyal is worth an honest look.

Filorga’s Hydra-Hyal can be purchased on Filorga.com, select Nordstrom stores or on Nordstrom.com, for $69.00.

Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Perry Ellis- Perry Ellis Red

Perry Ellis RedContinuing with our influx of Father’s Day recommendations for select fragrances, today, Perry Ellis Red is in the spotlight for review. In my experience, Perry Ellis offers casual, sporty fragrances properly suited for relaxed daytime performance. Now, Perry Ellis Red is billed as a fresh, masculine scent that reflects a gentleman’s fearless confidence and sexy sophistication. All that being stated, let’s get to the specifics and examine how Perry Ellis Red performs.

Observations

Top Notes: Juniper Berries, Italian Bergamot, Citrus

Middle Notes: Apple, Leather, Amber, Sichuan Pepper

Base Notes: Sage, Oakmoss, Sandalwood

  • Perry Ellis Red is a casual, standard scent that forgoes complexity and instead opts for a straightforward, aggressive burst of sweetness courtesy of juniper and citrus notes. Amber assists with lending more elements of sweetness with a soft, warm delivery. This theme continues through the heart of Perry Ellis Red before it finally settles into a natural, woodsy base.
  • The woody base is just as dominant as the top and middle notes; it really is a tale of two scents as each half is fully distinguished from the other. The conclusion is remarkably robust, so a gentleman should be lenient with his initial application.
  • Now, to reiterate, Perry Ellis Red starts strong and it ends stronger. If too much is applied, the top notes can be overwhelming, as pointed out by my wife. It’s projection is wide and far. I experimented with applications for a week, and concluded that 3-4 sprays was the sweet spot to hit without the scent becoming too obnoxious. Its life is significantly long. Traces of its scent will certainly be apparent at the end of a gentleman’s day.
  • The presentation is ordinary fare for a cologne flask with the exception of a red transparent, glass middle surrounded by the flask’s black body. It’s plain, but if you are not one that places a premium on appearance, this should not be an issue.
  • As with previous experiences, Perry Ellis Red proved to be well-suited for casual environments and daytime affairs. Lively and vigorous, a gentleman can trust Red to be trusted scent that won’t lose a spot in his rotation of cologne.
  • Perry Ellis Red 3.4 oz. $65.00 – Available at Perry Ellis, Macy’s, and other fine men’s department stores
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Burberry – Mr. Burberry

Mr BurberryThe month of June is but a few days away, and now is as good as time as any to contemplate what type of Father’s Day gift would be great for that special gentleman. Today, up for review, is the latest offering from Burberry – Mr. Burberry. Introduced in April 2016, Mr. Burberry is the gentleman’s alternative to My Burberry. Touted as sophisticated and contemporary, Mr. Burberry is the creation of a collaborative effort between Chief Creative & Chief Executive Officer Christopher Bailey and perfumer Francis Kurkdjian. Moody and dark with a prominent presence of wood and spice, the custom monogramming is an elegant finishing touch to complete the package. Now, let’s dive into the details

Observations

Top notes: Tarragon, Grapefruit, Cardamom

Middle Notes: Cedar, Birch Leaf, Nutmeg

Base Notes: Sandalwood, Guaiac Wood, Vetiver

  • The introductory period with Mr. Burberry is a promising affair, sweet notes of grapefruit tempered by hints of nuanced bitter ones. Soon, the sweetness prevails, albeit briefly, before Mr. Burberry settles into an earthy feel that extends from the heart to the base. My sole complaint: I wish the top note lasted a little longer. This scent is properly suited for evening events.
  • Mr. Burberry can be characterized as earnest and brooding. Composed mostly of wood and spice, this is a serious fragrance suited for the professional gentleman. It does not project very far, however, it does display a concentrated intensity within a short-range. Therefore, don’t allow yourself to be influenced by the seemingly inhibited nature because it can pack a punch if applied liberally. You’ll overwhelm yourself and your immediate company.
  • The warm dry-down enjoys an extended longevity; the woody base will not abandon a gentleman for sure. The ending could benefit from the addition of a citrus or flower companion to contribute a bright contrast to the moody finale, but some gentlemen may be fine with how Mr. Burberry concludes.
  • The presentation is clean and elegant, drawing inspiration from the iconic black Burberry trench coat. Housed in blackish-grey, dense glass; Mr. Burberry is topped off (literally) by a weighted cap in reference to horn-look buttons and a hand-knotted sliver of black gabardine around the throat. It really is a handsome bottle to present on Father’s Day.
  • Mr. Burberry 30 ml ($55), 50 ml($68), 100 ml ($88), 150 ml ($115) – complimentary monogramming up to three initials at Burberry.com and select Burberry stores.
  • Available at Burberry, Nordstrom, Sephora, and other fine men’s department stores.
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Vince Camuto – Eterno

Vince Camuto EternoAside from a few intermittent episodes of cool temperatures as a coy reminder of winter, spring has stubbornly arrived, and a gentleman can start considering a fresh, new fragrance to welcome the season in properly. Combined with Father’s Day – fast approaching – it is certainly the perfect time for a gentleman to perform an inventory of his cologne stock and afford thoughtful deliberation regarding such an acquisition. Well, The Gentlemen’s Standard is here to assuage any worrisome, moral dilemmas one may encounter – a gentleman’s scent is serious business. Collaborating again with our friends representing Vince Camuto; its newest offering Eterno is the fourth Camuto fragrance to be offered since 2012. Past encounters with Vince Camuto fragrances have been pleasant, so the promise of sampling another beautiful fragrance is great. Now let’s see if Eterno continues the tradition.

Observations

Top Notes: Citrus, Mint

Middle Notes: Cedar Wood, Patchouli

Base Notes: Saffron, Bourbon

  • Vince Camuto Eterno commences with a warm open that exhibits remarkable restraint during its introduction. Subdued traces of citrus and mint are light and springy with an even temperament that does not overwhelm the senses.
  • The middle and base notes are deep with a strong woodsy flavor with mellow hints of spice. A gentleman can be generous with his application of Eterno without worry of offending individuals around him. Again, the overall scent is smooth and defined, as none of the notes are particularly overbearing.
  • Now, given its quiet demeanor, Eterno may be susceptible to fading into the background as a gentleman’s day progresses. Exhibiting a moderate staying power, the scent itself can get drowned out by fragrant, environmental noise. Eterno sticks with you, but only a person close enough to you will be able to appreciate its concluding notes.
  • Vince Camuto Eterno is presented once again with its signature, rectangular glass bottle, but only this time in a white version. Reminiscent of a flask, the glass bottle is encased with a white leather composite with accompanying logo embossment.
  • A gentleman will be served best when Eterno is worn during intimate affairs where the proximity of human contact is relatively small. Eterno is fresh – absent busy notes that can overwhelm and confuse. The transition between notes is clean and deliberate without any of stages overpowering the other. Eterno is definitely made for the gentleman with a relaxed lifestyle where a soft, masculine scent can be appreciated up close and personal.
  • Vince Camuto Eterno  3.4 oz $75.00 – Available at Vince Camuto, Macy’s, Dillard’s or any fine men’s department store.
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Timberland West Haven – The Business Casual Boot

IMG_3129After a few sporadic days of exclusive previews, a gentleman can rest assured that winter is indeed coming. If last year was any indication, one can expect generous amounts of snow and bone-chilling temperatures once again, and dress preparations must be undertaken accordingly. Of course, particular attention will be afforded to a gentleman’s selection of outerwear and accessories. Coats, gloves, and scarves will be deployed to combat what awaits outside. However, today, we’re focusing on an essential sartorial element that is often taken for granted…footwear – namely boots.

Now, with formal or casual options being pretty much straightforward choices; it is the in-between game, the business-casual game, that trips many gentlemen up. Yes, it is not as easy as it may appear. To perfectly execute the styling of a business-casual presentation for boots, a certain balance of refinement and ruggedness must be achieved. To illustrate this point, today we are lucky to have the Timberland West Haven on deck to serve as an example. So, let’s vault into the details before the next snowfall buries us all.

IMG_3139Now, if you are familiar with Timberland, you will already understand that the rugged element is a quintessential staple that pervades many of their models of footwear. However, how is refinement and sophistication addressed when discussing the aesthetic of a business-casual boot? Well, the dynamic amalgam of business and casual succeeds with the commencement of a casual, roughened baseline and then deftly infusing formal elements to soften the tough exterior.

With the West Haven, all the signature rugged components that make Timberland, well – Timberland, are accounted for. The durable cotton laces. The robust, sturdy soles – made with 34% recycled rubber by the way. The supple, pliable full-grain leather. Lastly, the West Haven boasts a zipper that lends a sly hint of attitude as you head into the office. And now, let’s focus on the dressier elements that raises the West Haven’s status from your standard boot to a higher, more dignified pedigree.

Fully present, we have a cap-toe with an adjacent perforated cap design just before the vamp. There are also decorative perforations along the quarters. One can observe beautiful stitching that encircles the entire sole. As previously mentioned above, full-grain premium leather is employed for hard-wearing usage and sophistication.

The boot’s silhouette is streamlined enough to separate itself from the regular chunky boot category, which definitely designates it as office ready. And on your way to the office, a gentleman can be comforted that the West Haven sole provides traction with its exclusive Gripstick™ technology. Oh – the West Haven is supremely comfortable and very forgiving on a gentleman’s heel and sole.

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Gent Hints – How To Wear the West Haven

  • The business casual boot is best utilized when worn with trousers boasting tweed, heavier khaki, corduroy, or denim material. The beautiful  marriage of refinement and ruggedness best suits a gentleman when the landscape is replete with snow and slush.
  • The strip of leather that forms a small loop on the back of the boot, it’s called a bootstrap, and it affords leverage when a gentleman is putting on his boots – use it.
  • The standard boot tends to grant additional space for a gentleman’s foot. Therefore, to accommodate the extra room, moderately thick cotton or woolen blend hosiery is recommended.
  • The roominess will probably lead to moderate creasing along flex points, but that should not pose an issue if you regularly polish your footwear.
  • Perhaps a little too rugged for board meetings (unless you are a total rakish rebel), the West Haven is however perfectly suited for your standard office space.

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Product Specifications

  • Anti-Fatigue Technology: Made specifically for people who spend long days on their feet, our exclusive anti-fatigue technology is built into the midsole, and uses geometric cone support to provide exceptional standing comfort, shock absorption and energy return all day.
  • Anti-fatigue removable foot-beds with soft synthetic leather covers
  • 100% Organic Cotton Laces: The fabric is made of 100% certified organic cotton (USDA National Organic Program, or equivalent, certified).
  • Premium full-grain leather uppers
  • Silver Rated Tannery: One or more major components use at least 50% leather tanned in a facility rated Silver or higher by a third-party environmental audit. The Leather Working Group judges and classifies tanneries based on energy use, waste production and water treatment.
  • Convenient side zip for easy entry
  • Timberland® exclusive Gripstick™ outsole is made with super-sticky 34% recycled rubber
  • Retails at $180.00
  • Imported

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For more information for ordering, please visit the Timberland website HERE for details.

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Review – Tommy Bahama – St. Kitts for Men

Tommy Bahama St KittsCurrently, here in my home state of Michigan, the temperatures have commenced their annual descent into chillier territory. Nothing drastic mind you, but apparent enough to remind local residents that cooler days are indeed on the foreseeable horizon. Such is life in states with frosty temperatures during the span between late October and early April. Therefore, on occasion, a mental respite can be summoned by way of a relaxing cologne to serve as much-needed distraction – there is subtle psychological element to wearing cologne that cannot be dismissed. That being stated, allow me to direct your attention to the latest, limited-edition offering from Tommy Bahama: St. Kitts for Men. With wintry conditions ahead, let’s gauge the performance of St. Kitts for Men, and then we can decide if it provides the mental getaway that a gentleman requires from time to time when the weather outside is frightful.

Observations

Top Notes: Kaffir Lime, Mandarin Orange, Star Fruit (Carambola)

Middle Notes: Cedar, Sea Salt, Watery Accord

Base Notes: Driftwood, Ambergris, Creamy Musk

  • After a departure from its signature curved bottle – departures being Tommy Bahama Compass and Tommy Bahama Island Life – St. Kitts is a return to its unique style, arriving in a deep cobalt blue container with a very soft texture. If I were being picky, the presentation would be beautifully topped off by a brass top instead of the brass colored plastic that arrives with the product. It slightly detracts from the overall visual, but that is only for the gentleman that obsesses over details. Minor, but worth mentioning for those that care about such nuances.
  • From its introduction to its middle act to its conclusion, the transitional phases are steady and smooth. Each note flows into the other seamlessly without overpowering each other. The highlights of the top and middle notes are the mandarin orange, star fruit, and watery accord. In tandem, a gentleman enjoys a mildly sweet opening that lasts for a generous amount of time.
  • The closing notes are slow and sustained. Again, it does not dry down with a strong presence, so there is a risk of being overpowered in an environment of competing scents. So don’t trot off to the casino where the cascading smoke will negate your efforts to smell great.
  • A gentleman will surely benefit from generous applications, nothing over the top, but 8-10 sprays from the bottle should suffice and last a decent portion of the day.
  • Tommy Bahama St. Kitts for Men is not strong by any means. And actually, because of its soft notes, I could imagine a woman wearing this. Therefore, if you’re the type of gentleman that prefers a more rugged scent, this offering from Tommy Bahama may not be for you. Definitely a spring and summer cologne, St. Kitts for Men can be a welcome change of pace as the days become duller and gloomier. St. Kitts for Men is consistent. From beginning to end, its identity never changes, sweet and fruity, it affords a gentleman a softer approach to fall and winter while conjuring up thoughts of more pleasant temperatures to come.
  • Tommy Bahama 3.4 oz $65.00 – Available exclusively at Tommy Bahama locations or online at http://www.tommybahama.com/TBG/Men/Mens_New_Products/PRD_200420/Mens+St+Kitts+34+oz+Cologne+Spray.jsp
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample for review purposes only. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Sebago – Crest Collection Docksides

IMG_3010It was an interesting concept that I had to ready my mind to absorb; I never fathomed that the intersection of luxury and a boat shoe was attainable. A boat shoe was, well, a typical boat shoe – a preppy staple reserved for outings on bodies of water or outings on land with a smoking barbecue grill nearby. Simply stated: It is the ultimate casual shoe with a small touch of style in some rare cases. Now, casual and luxury are not exactly synonymous. Nonetheless, Sebago is making the case that a boat shoe can be dipped in luxury by benefiting from rich materials and well-crafted construction. The Sebago Crest Collection strives to create an amalgamation of both casual and luxury with polished details and impeccable, tactile elements. Given the opportunity to slide into a pair, today we’re going to determine if the Sebago Docksides boat shoe is as good as advertised. Continue reading

Review – Jack Black – The Defensive Line Anti-Aging Triple Play

Jack Black Defensive LineFull disclosure: I entered this fatherhood game at the tender age of 36 years old. Now, given that Father Time will eventually visit me pretty soon (if he already has not), and coupled with the reality of raising a newborn this late in life; a brother is going to require all the assistance he can get to fight back the impending reality of  burgeoning wrinkles. Even before the arrival of my daughter, I had committed myself to a robust grooming regimen with a complete overhaul of my skin care products. Jack Black was one of the first skin care brands that I decided to trial. I instantly became a huge fan.

Fast-forward to the here and now, I have been afforded the fortuitous opportunity to test and evaluate the Jack Black Defensive Line Anti-Aging Triple Play leading into Father’s Day. Consisting of Jack Black ProSeries offerings Protein Booster Skin Serum, Protein Booster Eye Rescue, and DIY Power Peel Multi-Acid Resurfacing Pads; this collective promises to address a gentleman’s face with the desired result to produce healthier skin. A great value at $100.00 (purchasing each separately will cost you $140.00), this package is a great investment for a gentleman seeking better looking skin. Let’s see what this set has to offer. Continue reading

Review – Vince Camuto – Solare

Vince Camuto SolareWell, it is certainly that time of the year. It is that time of year when spring is well underway, summer is right around the corner, and Father’s Day is on the horizon. Therefore, this perfect storm of events have given rise to a prominent influx of grooming review requests from my friendly public relations connections. This month has been especially busy, as two unexpected trips to the emergency room with my daughter, all within a 2 week span, have accelerated the rate of gray hairs growing in my beard. Alas, the life of a parent. Nevertheless, between trips to Beaumont and still fulfilling my employment duties at Trinity Health, I was able to carve out some much-required time to shower, groom, and test products. And thus, let the reviews begin! Today, we are placing Vince Camuto Solare under the examination light. Launched this year as a follow-up to Vince Camuto Homme – which I enjoyed immensely – Solare arrives with the promise of introducing creativity and vitality into a gentleman’s grooming lifestyle. Let’s see if it delivers on that promise.

Observations

Top Notes: French Lavender, Juicy Mandarin, Red Apple

Middle Notes: Cardamom, Wild Sage, Pimento Leaves

Base Notes: Sensual Musk, Tonka Leaves, Cashmere Woods, Creamy Blonde Woods

  • Vince Camuto Solare swiftly commences with a sharp burst of citrus that is unabashedly sweet and fresh. The notes of sweetness endure for a surprisingly extended length of time before finally settling down into the middle portion. Fleeting hints of apple will be the last distinct note you will be able to discern before the top notes are finished.
  • Now the middle section of Solare shares the same sweetness as the introduction, but not as sharply defined. Its temperament is slow and steady. Nevertheless, the tandem of the top and middle notes work in concert to comprise a majority of the scent’s dominant smell.
  • Given its sweet nature, Solare appears slightly fade over the course of the day. And given that fact, a gentleman can be seduced by the thought of dispersing additional applications – please don’t. Solare will adhere to your clothing far longer than it will to you. Therefore, I recommend addressing your pulse points – the neck and wrists – with a spritz of 4-6 hits. Depending on your body chemistry, a gentleman could perhaps apply a little more. I would steer clear of spraying your body unless you don’t mind the scent sticking to your clothing.
  • Now, as sweet as the top and middle notes were, the bottom notes carried the same theme, but with darker undertones. There is a faint woody flavor present, but not really overt. And if a gentleman decides to bathe himself in Solare – as I previously warned against – those undertones will be overwhelming and haunt you – and your clothing – for the rest of the day.
  • Vince Camuto Solare is best suited for light casual affairs where a gentleman might find himself around a pool or body of water. The atmosphere should be as clean as possible, as heavy scents, such as the smoke from a barbeque grill, will surely overpower Solare. Solare is a fun fragrance; energetic, yet sublimely subtle.
  • Vince Camuto Solare 3.4 oz $70.00 – Available at Vince Camuto, Macy’s,Von Maur or any fine men’s department store.
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
 
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