Trying not to be judgemental here, but Original Santal by Creed is really a depressing fragrance given the price and the pretenses it has. I can accept the fact there is no (I mean: no!) sandalwood here, and obviously no “original” sandalwood therefore, but even putting that aside, it smells really, clearly and desperately mediocre. Don’t expect any luxury out of this, it is basically a really generic herbal juniper-lavender blend with a lot of spices on the smooth-sweet side, mostly cinnamon and tonka, and that’s it. Pleasantly outdated if you want, but that’s a really miserable cold comfort to pay that money to feel like a wealthy distinguished connoisseur while actually smelling like a lower-class accountant from the early 1990s. Not saying Original Santal stinks; it is decent, in the least enthusiastic meaning ever, something which I would consider acceptable for a 15/20 EUR fragrance. “Drugstore/chainstore-decent” as any Montblanc and similar fragrances would be. Sadly I am given to understand Creed fans are most of the time so devotedly stubborn that my review will just appear as some snobbish grumpy opposer bashing the brand for the sake of it... well I am not. I admit this would be fine with a way lower price, so I do see some margin of acceptability with this fragrance, but as-is (over 2 EUR/ml?) it’s objectively preposterous - this being in the same broad price range of, say, Hermès Cuir d’Ange? Insulting.
Original Santal mixes a heavy dose of sandalwood with fresh and spicy elements. I get more of the lavender and ginger than cinnamon, more of a floral/spicy mix than strictly a spicy mix, as the whole fragrance still feels somewhat light and fresh as opposed to dense and spicy.
The fresh sandalwood aspect of Creed Original Santal makes it strikingly similar to Himalaya, which certainly isn't a negative since Himalaya is one of the more agreeably better Creed offer.
With good longevity and projection, this might be a bottle-worthy despite its similarities to Himalaya. I've noticed no comments mentioning Himalaya before this but found it worth mentioning since it was the first thought that came to mind after trying this on for the first time. Excellent composition that brings together fresh, woody, and spicy elements.
8 out of 10
A pleasant scent, but at these rates, that is not going to cut it. Low silage and projection.Pass.
I own several Creeds, so my rating isn't based on a prejudice against the line.
This is a pleasant scent that would be good if:
It lasted longer
It wasn't so expensive
Nothing special here. With more sillage and longevity I could easily see adding it to my wardrobe. But, as it, no.
Cinnamon is one of my favourite smells and tastes. Therefore, this scent was always going to be a winner for me. Its a really underrated scent in the Creed line, with Aventus taking most of the limelight. But Santal should be taken seriously. For me, this fragrance lasts most of the evening, which is when, like many others, i would suggest wearing this. Its a perfect scent for the cold winter months. The warm cinnamon and vanilla notes create such a distinctive and sexy smell. Another winner from Creed