Perfume Directory

Globe (1990)
by Rochas


Globe information

Year of Launch1990
Average Rating
(based on 76 votes)

People and companies

PerfumerNicolas Mamounas
Parent CompanyInter Parfums
Parent Company at launchWella

About Globe

Globe is a masculine fragrance by Rochas. The scent was launched in 1990 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Nicolas Mamounas

Reviews of Globe

The end of the 1980's and beginning of the 1990's was a tumultuous time for masculine perfumery, as schools of thought became divided over the future direction such perfumery should take. Many houses jumped on the new "clean and fresh" bandwagon made popular by Davidoff Cool Water (1988) and Calvin Klein Eternity for Men (1989), but some went in floral directions all their own, while some just kept in the same stiff oakmoss or animalic powerhouse rut that had started up in the late 70's, and a few combined the two. Rochas seemingly was the latter case here with Globe, and joined that ultra-elite but completely unsung short-lived evolutionary spur of masculines known as the floral powerhouse. Those who follow close to their perfume history of the period already know that Balenciaga tried this with Ho Hang Club (1987) and then again with Balenciaga Pour Homme that would release alongside Rochas Globe in 1990. Parfums Salvador Dali would also have a dark take on this idea with their debut masculine in 1987, while Paco Rabanne would join in with Ténéré (1988) alongside Bogart's Furyo, and Azzaro with Acteur (1989). Most of these mentioned would rush in with a strong rose note as their prominent floral, and some would have a heavy animalic base that made them growl alongside other powerhouses of the day, while others would come across as old-school chypres in their finish. Globe seeks to separate itself from this pack by downplaying rose and focusing more on a balanced floral bouquet led by artemisia, balsam fir, and finishing in a crisp, almost modern clean base. Globe is the clean and sober Antaeus (1981) for men that want to come across powerful without seeming predatory, as it has a similar labadnum and leather punch in the base without as much dirty castoreum getting in the way.

Globe opens with artemisia, and lots of it. There's a bright bergamot jolt too, spiky coriander, sweaty cumin, token lemon, and a dusting of galbanum to keep it sharp and green. The cumin is not very strong and you have to search for it, but it turns up after some sniffing. I feel it was added to "man up" the scent rather than add the sexy funk it usually imparts on a scent, so it's a rhythm player instead of a lead instrument. The middle is where the floral character is most present, which brings us around to carnation, geranium, jasmine, muguet, rose, marigold, with the balsam fir as mentioned and thyme keeping this from being too dandy. By this phase, anyone not okay with a masculine floral is running for the scrub brush, as the opening is fairly classic 80's while this heart is where the weirdness for this brief upstart genre begins. Again, this isn't a rose-dominated floral composition like it's peers, and draws comparisons to something like Givenchy Insense (1993), which was probably the last straggler out of the gate for this style, and also the "cleanest" of the bunch. Globe rests more between this clean and the muscular gym rat approach of the early 80's, especially in the finish. Base notes are par for the course if this was a 1980 release, featuring cedar, token labdanum, sandalwood, token leather, musk, barely perceptible patchouli, vetiver, oakmoss, and very muted castoreum note. Once the day is through, a person wearing Rochas Globe will feel as though they are wearing a lighter and friendlier Antaeus holding a bouquet of flowers, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but brings nothing new to the table outside of the attempt to "clean up" the styles it merges. Globe feels like a good compromise between the conventions being left behind in the 80's, the daring, yet failed floral direction taken by some of it's rivals near that decades' end, with just a slight nod of respect to the new "fresh" direction more widely-accepted in it's time.

Globe won't impress the person who has well-versed knowledge of 80's masculines and a wardrobe full of nothing but, as even though it was released at the cusp of the 90's decade, it is indeed firmly planted with both feet in the beginning of the previous one. It's only bit of real fascination for this kind of person is it's own moving of the florals forward in the mix, and cleaning up the dry down so it's own animalic subtext is just that: subtext. It will come across to the lover of the aforementioned Antaeus or Yves Saint Laurent Kouros (1981) as an anemic floral bridge between that alpha-male style and the washed-out tones of the "fresh revolution", a compromise in a bottle they can't get behind. Other more adventurous palettes (and lovers of gender-flirting florals), will find this exceptionally unique like many of the others in it's small category, and a real contender for the niche market if re-introduced because of course, it's very discontinued. The average Joe with no taste for this particular era or style will just find Globe bizarrely sharp and uncomfortably dry, without the benefit of a reference point to label it as "old school" or "modern", since such is the relative obscurity in which it lives. I think it's a great scent that benefits from it's florals as a more-wearable version of the 80's style it mostly apes, making it a more "comfortable" powerhouse for the office or meetups with strange new friends, when you wanting something that isn't run-of-the-mill, but won't downright alienate anyone getting within sniff distance. I like a scent that draws out questions from people, and this will certainly do it. Stick to mid-temperatures for this one however, as it is too stiff for heat and not rich enough for cold. Also, for those seriously looking into full-bottle purchases, there is no difference between first edition and later releases of Globe besides the metal band around the bottle.
02nd April, 2018
If you’re looking for vintage Chanel Antaeus, why not consider Rochas Globe? I have a few iterations of vintage Antaeus and Globe’s dry-down is surprisingly identical. But more on that later.

Globe begins the party with one of the most spice-laden openings you will find. Heavy with Artemisia, Coriander and light Bergamot; Globe immediately dates itself as a ‘80s fragrance. The problem is it came out in 1990. Out of step and fashion, certainly. The journey progresses from the spice cabinet to the garden and what a wonderful journey it is! Floral bouquets of Carnations, Geranium, light Rose, and subtle pine surround your senses. Outside of Givenchy’s Insense, which I don’t care for, this could be the most floral masculine fragrance I’ve ever encountered. But here’s the key, it’s all gentleman and nowhere is a lady in sight. Then the powerful Antaeus drydown begins – cedar, leather, sandalwood and a dose of labdanum. Clearly manly territory here and the movement from the garden to the den never seems forced or harsh but all very natural.

Globe, though discontinued, is widely available and pretty reasonably priced at that. How can you go wrong? You owe it to yourself to try Globe and let the magic unfold.

30th March, 2016
I like Globe but I'm afraid it never really excited me. We often complain about the current state masculine designer fragrances but, back then, the situation wasn't really *that* different. Yes, more diversity, fewer (if any) restrictions on ingredients and better textures but, in the end, most masculines were just slightly different takes on the ol' dominant genre known as fougere. Globe makes no exception for me. A sweetish floral fougere with an eye on the past and one on the…present. I would have loved to be able to say *one eye on the future* but this is not the case in my opinion. During the first lustrous of 1990, we experienced several more seminal fragrances than Globe which probably settled a better landmark for the masculine perfumery to come. Egoiste, DK Men (aka Fuel For Men), Le Male, CK Eternity, Comme Des Garcons Original EDP and several others. Not to talk about under the radar gems such as Insensè, Ungaro II or Ocean Rain or even the first niche offerings such as Femminitè Du Bois, Lorenzo Villoresi Uomo and Amouage Ubar to name only a very few.

Those were years of transition and ferment during which Rochas Globe represented just a minor release that wasn't able to properly stand out. Good but deservedly under the radar in my opinion.

02nd February, 2015
Globe is one of the lost boys from the 90s. Guerlain Heritage (the only one of the bunch still in production), Jacomo Anthracite, Givenchy Insense, Paco Rabanne Tenere.  Diverse trends led to the perfumes of the 90s. The fougères from the 70s, the power frags from the 80s, the remapping of the terrain by Davidoff Cool Water. The fragrances themselves have a range of olfactory qualities and don’t smell alike, but they are a cohort, and they were launched into similar markets. There are a plenty of opinions as to why this set of fragrances didn't take hold, and an equal number of opinions as to the meaning of their failures. 

Assuming all of the above forces and trends, let's just take a look at the perfume.

Globe didn't jump out at me the first time I wore it. I certainly have fallen for perfumes at first sniff (Insense, 1969, Egoiste, Liaisons Dangereuses.) These perfumes back up their promises with the goods. If what you're selling is (capital-B) Beauty, you better be ravishing. I've had to work on some of the more meaningful perfumes.  (Aromatics Elixir, Cristalle, Vol De Nuit.). Not every perfume offers the same thing, and my love or value of a perfume isn't be based strictly on the first impression.  In fact, it's the challenging perfumes that bring me back.  Uncertainty can be delicious. 

The perfume that Globe brought to mind when I first tried it, is Baldessarini, a perfume I don’t particularly like. I find Baldessarini a ‘sweet nothing’. All I get from it is a lingering sweetness. There were some vague perfumes coming out at this time, with blurred qualities. Vaguely sweet. Vaguely fresh. Vaguely water-like.  Some conquered this era and were able to pursue minimalism. Case in point is Jean-Claude Ellena, currently the in-house perfumer for Hermes, whom many cite as the creator of Globe.  (Wikipedia and Now Smell This.  Fragrantica and Basenotes cite Nicolas Mamounas, the perfumer who created Byzance, Mystere and others for Rochas, as the perfumer who composed Globe.) Many perfume houses misunderstood the impetus for minimalism and instead created wan, pale, diluted perfumes.  

I missed the point when I looked at Globe through the lens of Baldessarini. With Globe, Rochas offered not so much minimalism as subtlety. Globe is a sweet floral chypre, with a medicinal tone that ties the balsams to a peppery carnation, offering not so much an exact scent as a feeling of chilled sweetness.   It suggests the apprehensiveness of an overcast day. Will the cover break, or will it rain? Globe smells like glare and the palor of light through clouds, and connotes weather in the same way that Hermes Equipage does. Equipage is more crisp and incisive, but both share a coolness that I associate with a cool season or climate. Also Like Equipage, Globe has grown on me and I’ve come to appreciate its virtues over the years. I wonder how Globe would fare if it were released today.

Why Globe was discontinued is an open question. Luca Turin groups Globe with the 'lost boys' I mention above, suggesting that they were too good or too pure to survive an era that called for cleansing and reparation from its men's fragrances. I won't disagree. Shame, though. Globe would have been a great alternative to so many of the sport/fresh/aqua fragrances of the 1990s. It rang a few of the proper bells, being chilled and smooth, but didn't come with the mark of being a Cool Water clone. 
19th June, 2014
Genre: Fougère

Jean-Claue Elléna’s* Globe strikes me as one of the very few essays in the post Cool Water/Green Irish Tweed fruity fougère style that’s worth smelling – perhaps the only one that improves upon the two originals. Elléna’s brilliance in composing Globe was to graft the aromatic fruity-green fougère accord from Green Irish Tweed and Cool Water onto an immense white floral bouquet. These two blocks are seasoned with cardamom and coriander and set atop an arid, raspy cedar, sandalwood, and patchouli foundation, intended perhaps to make the composition more recognizably “masculine.”

The structure is brilliant and original, and why anybody at Rochas thought J. Q. Public would buy it is beyond me. Globe doesn’t press any of the familiar male fragrance buttons until well into its musky vetiver, sandalwood, and labdanum drydown. That it projects robustly and leaves more sillage in the air than most men are probably accustomed to are additional strikes against it. In its day, Globe represented a brave (and almost certainly doomed,) attempt to broaden the horizons of male perfumery. Had it been released as a unisex niche fragrance I suppose it might still be with us. Were it introduced today, in synch with the mini-trend of floral designer scents for men, as embodied in Kenzo Power and Fleur de Male, would it survive? Idle conjecture, all of it, but I’m glad of the opportunity to wear Globe and to wonder.

* One whiff of Globe gets me wishing that Elléna would compose something this complex, layered, and original for Hermès. Do the Hermès art directors demand pallid, invertebrate scents from him, or is the stylistic dead end of minimalist one-liners something he’s pursuing of his own volition? Globe offers ample evidence that he can do differently. (And better?)
15th June, 2014 (last edited: 14th June, 2014)
Globe is a delight! I ordered a tester at a low price to try it out and I am glad I did. I love the floral/herbal opening. In my opinion it is safe to wear day or night. I am wearing it today to the office and two of my co-workers already gave me compliments.
19th March, 2014

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