Background (1993)
    by Jil Sander

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    rbaker's avatar

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    Unique and brilliant

    In the opening raspberry and lemon combine with anise and lavender to mix traditional with the unusual, and all is given some extra freshness with the help of a good dose of bergamot. The drydown commences in flowery hues, with jasmine and heliotrope merging with a nice rose; cinnamon gives additional warmth. After about six hours deeper and darker zone are reached, with styrax resin and cedar combining with musky and ambery aromas. A touch of tonka gives a little sweetnes that never really catches my attention. This is a complex and versatile fragrance whose longitudinal development is never boring. Is had very good projection and silage, and the longevity is a brilliant twelve hours or more. One of the great citrus-oriental scents of the nineties.

    Pros: Longevity

    06 August, 2013

    Mysticman's avatar
    United States United States

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    If Canoe and Halston 1-12 had a baby, and that baby grew up to become a refined and sophisticated mature adult, it would no doubt bear a strong resemblance to Jil Sander's Background. The citrus/lavender/heliotrope signature of Canoe is quite recognizable, as is the warm amber/green accord of 1-12; yet Background has its own distinct identity as well.

    Smooth, elegant and invigorating, Background is a ideal late-summer scent that conjures up sunlight filtering through the trees and reflecting on the water of a lake or slow-moving stream. The air is warm, with a fragrant breeze hinting at the approach of fall. Another great fragrance that has been sadly discontinued.

    12 September, 2012

    ThrowingShade's avatar
    United States United States

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    I remember this when it came out. I loved it then and I love it now. Why do all the good scents get cancelled? This is really amazing all over again for me. It must be the years in between. Crisp and yet musky, its very complex and intriguing. I was lucky enough to score 3 large tester bottles of this from a friend. Bad for him, good for me!

    03 June, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar
    United States United States

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    Sweet and fruity on top and very comforting. A neat blend of florals and fruits for men. In the drydown, the cedar and rose intermingle and become the dominant note. Very nice and unique.

    17 August, 2008

    the_good_life's avatar
    Germany Germany

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    Top: Anise, Bergamot, Lavender, Lemon, Rasperry, Tarragon
    Middle: Clove, Cinnamon, Heliotrope, Jasmine, Muguet, Rose
    Base: Amber, Benzoin, Cedar, Musk, Tonka Bean, Vanilla
    Rare and highly sought, Background commands three-digit prices on ebay Germany. Being a great fan of the equally rare Man Pure I was intrigued by this. The mini I was able to acquire for a few Euros, though it might of course be somewhat off, has put my interest to rest. Background is one of those "Nivea" fragrances - it reminds me of the generic smell of drugstore hand creams. There is a spark of that in Nino Cerruti, but that perfume goes elsewhere. It's very pronounced in Casran and also in Ronaldo Esper's Graphite. The effect seems to come about through the combination of fruity/citrus and herbal notes. Majoram/Basil and Tangerine/Bergamot in Graphite; Bergamot/Lemon and Juniper/Galbanum in Cerruti; Bergamot/Lemon/Rasperry and Tarragon here. Aided by the middle notes of heliotrope and rose in particular that add to the handcream feel, as well as vanilla or tonka and certain balsamic basenotes The sum total inevitably conjures up images of well-groomed, somewhat conservatively dressed women of 45+ age, as I encountered them during childhood, who used Nivea, Atrix, Creme 21 or whatever brands were popular in the 70s. No masculinity in this for me. Well, don't let my personal hang up spoil your pleasure in any of these fragrances. I just needed to point this out.

    21st February, 2007

    Joshaugustt's avatar

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    I love this scent. Sander never really promoted it, but it has a loyal following. It's completely unique. It's very warm, fresh, with just a touch of exotic fern and it long lasting and stays warm during the final dry down. It's a killer scent. But it's murder trying to find a bottle. Your best shot would be a "mini" and even those have become rare.

    19 April, 2003

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