It seems a shame to have my first review be a negative, but I suppose most of us new to fragrances are better at recognizing what we do not like vs what we do. I have a sample of TdH from Surrender To Chance, and have worn it twice on my arm, and again this morning; a large spray's worth on my chest. 40 minutes later I was in the shower scrubbing it off. This flinty vibe, that rises and hovers a couple feet off me, was intolerable. The smell under my shirt was pleasant enough; the vibe doesn't cling to the skin, and if the whole affair smelled like that I could be happy wearing this. My guess is the Iso E Super and I do not agree. I get the same from Encre Noir.
For most of the scents I have tried, my response has been indifferent. A few I like enough to have purchased. Terre d'Hermes is the first to which I can say definitely no. Perhaps I am making progress?
I'm so sad I can't rate this one a winner. I'm almost through my 2 ml sample sprayer, and have given it several wears. Today I may as well join the 500 other reviews because, well, I don't know why. Maybe I'm just trying to up my number of posts. First, I love the smell. It is earthy and mineral-y to my nose. Though a couple florals are listed, it doesn't strike me as a floral. Instead it has that green hit that a flowering shrub would have. Is that what geranium smells like? Though typically strong-funky wood resins are mentioned, I don't get a dirty wood vibe (which I love, love, love!). I don't know how to smell pepper, so it hasn't revealed itself to me. The smell is surely unique among fragrances, and I'm not surprised that it is copied and loved. There is a strange accord, maybe like lotion or makeup, but I can't find any other references to it. My nose is a very amateur one, so I may be mis-reading it: it seems that maybe that's the mineral smell, the smell of earth. Or maybe the green of a flowering shrub. The woods and citruses make me think of a walk through a conifer forest on a late Spring day, but after a bit of a rain. But, as an amateur sniffer, I cannot separate the notes effectively, so I cannot give a quality review. Others, obviously, have done this before me, so no loss for the BN'ers that I can't render a qualitative review. I do, however, wonder which Giono story Ellena had in mind? The woods and Earth make me think of "L'homme qui Plantait des Arbres", but the addition of "gunflint", and my perception of a slightly disturbing mineral scent bring to mind the anti-war novella "Le Troupeau", where destroyed, overturned, blood-soaked earth yields the blessings of new life. Honestly, that last sentence sort of describes this fragrance for me. So why a neutral rating? Even after a half-dozen squirts, on my torso, below the pits, on my throat, wrist, even in conjunction with spraying the clothes (my never-fail when a scent won't linger), Terre d'Hermes is just gone after an hour or two. I mean gone, and though it haunts me, it doesn't satisfy my desire for it. Sad neutral, but a masterful scent that is also a literary and philosophical reference, which I never thought possible.
Today's my first day wearing Terre d'Hermes. A very intriguing fragrance. I've enjoyed it. The orange and "flint" combo is unique and conveys a classy feeling. I'd say it's a very transparent fragrance. It feels very light and sheer compared to the Creed fragrances, which feel much more robust and layered. I get a more synthetic "vibe" while wearing this fragrance that I do from the Creed's or the Serge Lutens, at least the ones I've tried so far. I'm wondering if that is the flint, or the Iso E super. I had to laugh when I read MustardSalad's review. I think the flint is what gives him the scent of dill, but that's just a thought as I sit here and sniff this juice. Overall, a nice addition to my rotation, but in my opinion, this fragrance isn't nearly as good as Aventus, Royal Mayfair, Green Irish Tweed, Spice & Wood, Fille en Aiguilles, Ore, and several others. Of course that is my opinion. I know many feel this is the best of the best as shown in the top 500 right here on Base Notes, but it's down the list a ways for me, maybe top 10 or top 12. I'll have to keep wearing it and comparing.
In comparing a batch from 2007 Tester to that of 2009 Regular issue, there is a clear difference to me. The tester has a plushness and a lack of prominent astringent orange-aid citrus.
The 2007 is almost exact to the 2006 issue that I purchased in 2006.
The 2006-2007 original until possibly 2008 was excellent and deserves 5 Stars. Anything after 2008, in my opinion deserves at most 3 stars.
Hence my Neutral rating.
Tested this a week ago and after half a day it gave me a headache. My initial reaction was positive, however, and I thought I'd give it another try. Nope. Same headache.
I wish it would've settled into something less jarring. I really enjoy the top and heart, but something about the lingering, linear "sharpness" (for lack of a better term) ruins it for me. Perhaps it's the Iso E Super?
For that, I'll give a neutral rating. I can see how this would be a winner for many, but it doesn't work on me.