There’s no shortage of celebrity fragrances to gift this holiday season, but if you’re looking to be seduced, Usher says his newest men’s fragrance, USHER: VIP, is the way to go. “VIP is a tool of engagement, a seduction. You know, before you say hello, you smell someone and say, ‘Oh wow, he smells good. She smells incredible.’ I really wanted to do something that I felt would be very sensual, youthful and at the same time sophisticated,” he told PEOPLE backstage at his OMG concert in N.Y.C. last week, where he autographed bottles of the cologne. “I wanted to create something that I felt like would represent me in an aspect of sensuality and intelligence.” And how did the sexy singer create VIP’s signature scent? “I used the essence of bergamot at the top of the scent, so when you first smell it, you actually get the sense that there is a light fruitier scent and as you make your way down you capture saffron and violet leaf which really gives you a base, but what resonates over all is the suede. It’s the one note I love,” he said.
And now, to further celebrate his new fragrance, Usher has launched a contest on his Facebook page, which, from now until Jan. 28, will allow a fan to win a free autographed bottle of the cologne and a trip to N.Y.C. “This is the way they win: as they log in, I want them to give me their stories of someone who has been a VIP to them and — in essence — if they manage to create a story that is compelling then they’ll win. They’ll have their choice of going to the theater, a sports event or a concert. It’s all accommodating…dinner, hotel, everything. It really is a VIP experience!” he said. For everyone who enters the contest, Usher:VIP will make a donation to the star’s mentoring program, the New Look Foundation. –Carlos Greer