Starting now, forget what you know about AXE. Love it or hate it, it is the number one men’s fragrance brand in the world. The reason? They care about men. ALL men. They are making that very clear by showing us who the new AXE man is with their new campaign (check it out above). In addition to that, the brand is in its second year working with John Legend for their AXE Collective. He will be narrowing a field of talented men and women who have passion and talent in the fields of music and film making (Legend actually has his own production company, Get Lifted).
At the launch for the revamped campaign, I sat down with Legend to chat for a few minutes about his connection to the AXE Collective, how he plans on making this year even better than last year, and of course, his favorite AXE fragrance.
Legend is very excited about the AXE Collective and working with the various artists it cultivates. Last year “it was really fun meeting young artists,” he says. “I know what it’s like being a creative person trying to find their voice, trying to be heard, and I think this is such a great opportunity for them, and it's really fun and edifying for me to meet artists.” Last year's collective included musicians and fashion designers, which Legend and AXE worked with together along with US designer Billy Reid. “I loved seeing all of the musicians perform, I loved being part of the show that the designers did here for fashion week, and just seeing artists be able to express themselves in a venue where they can be seen by people from all over the country and all over the world is pretty exciting,” he says.
This year, AXE and Legend will be focusing on music, a given for Legend, and film, his newest extension into the creative space. “[We are] always looking for talented directors and writers and filmmakers to work with anyway, so both of these are really natural extensions of things we’re doing. I get approached by brands all the time, but sometimes it doesn’t work to do it because I just don’t feel the connection to the thing that we’re talking about—creatively it doesn’t connect with who I am. But this fits perfectly with what I am.”
Legend is also a husband—to model Chrissy Teigen—and soon-to-be father. He told us a little about how this mentorship is helping him shift his focus to fatherhood. “I want my daughter (and hopefully more in the future) to read all the time, and be aware of what’s happening around the world, and not be in their own little bubble. I want them aware, and I want them to be kind, and to be creative and intelligent.”
So what kind of AXE man is John Legend? “I use the Night Deodorant and Body Wash. That just fits me.” (That must mean it's Chrissy-approved!) And regarding the new collection of AXE Signature Collection, which will include Night, but offer a few more, new refined scents he says “I still use [Night]. I’ve got to figure out what my transition is going to be for the new collection.”