To add to the confusion, I'll say that barbier des isles smells like a more cheerful yatagan to me. I don't think it's sweet at all. It's airy, dry and invigorating. I find no oud here, and my impression of this is very similar to Ody's.
It's a good scent, and I approve. Get while you can, I think it's discontinued.
03rd May, 2011 (last edited: 23rd May, 2011)
Before I try it I thought it would be a light, fresh a little spicy woody-aromatic scent, judged by its notes. I'm fooled! This one is so thick and heavy and dull you almost can cut it with a knife! Where is the orange, where is my favorite bergamot? all I can smell was incense and some burnt spices. Oh and a hint of vetiver too but in this case it did not help freshen up this fragrance. I have never found CSP's scent I don't like but this is the one! I don't think I will try it again at least not in the near future. Disappointed!
21st January, 2009 (last edited: 24th July, 2009)
An early scent by CSP, before they descended down the lamentable vanilla rabbit-hole.
A marvellous old-school scent in the aromatic, spicy-wood line. It starts with citrus and warm spices, with hints of smoky incense. The elements are well blended, so it is a bit of a challenge to pick them out. However, I can say that the jasmine softerns the resinous incense and enriches the considerable woody spices. Hints of patchouli add tangy complexity. Dry woods emerge, along with some grassy vetiver. Hey – no vanilla at all here! Excellent! I like this sort of scent and this is very, very well done. It is substantial, and not for the faint of heart.
02nd May, 2008 (last edited: 25th July, 2014)
Just look at the variety of opinions! PaulSC says it’s a balanced powdery green fragrance; vadim calls it barbershop; robyogi says patchouli, vetiver, and Annick Goutal; nitram_naed says milk, lavender, and Coriolan; PaulG and tvlampboy say it’s a dry vetiver; flathorn claims aoud; JDBill — Aramis; and IPaid smells burning wood on a sandy beach. I find this very interesting because it shows how unique and individual our perceptions, our olfactory systems, and our skin chemistry are. Some fragrances have very consistent results among reviewers, others, like this one, have such variations in interpretations. I get two entirely different fragrances when I test this on paper and when I test it one my skin. On paper, after an aromatic / wood opening that lasts for almost an hour, I smell an incredibly beautiful vetiver fragrance – quite dry and, well… perfect. Unfortunately, on my skin BDI becomes an aoud sillage monster – it is almost pure aoud (myrrh wood?). I don’t get any citrus or florals. I get a little vetiver and a little spice, but, basically, I get an aoud like note that dominates the progression of the scent. This is a sinus clearing aoud, and to that extent, I think I am partially agreeing with IPaid as well as with Flathorn who was the first to cry, “Aoud.” My skin and/or my nose distort the aoud-like note into a dominance that I am not comfortable with. I still have a half of my decant left, so I will continue giving BDI further tests, and maybe I will overcome my resistance to it.
Bone dry vetiver with hints of verdant island fields. Crisp and sharp and impeccable -- definitely what I'd consider a "tailored" frag. I think of some stiff upper lippish Brit getting an old fashioned shave in Bermuda when I put this one on. (GREAT frag for warm climes, btw -- refreshing w/o being cloying -- it's ANYTHING but cloying.)
It's vetiver sans the dirtiness (Route du Vetiver), the tobacco (Guerlain's old formulation) the strong use of wood with vetiver (Molinard I) and the bubbly citrus (Guerlain's new formulation). Thumbs up, yes, but with the proviso that this stuff is very dry and VERY vetiver.