It takes either originality, natural smelling ingredients, or at least a modicum of care to make a “clean, fresh” men’s fragrance that doesn’t smell like a household cleaning product. The bad ones smell like liquid hand soap. The really bad ones smell like Diesel’s Only the Brave.
Only the Brave consists largely of two accords. One, a blend of aquatic notes and caustic, sinus-piercing woody ambers, is meant to smell “clean,” but actually smells like something I’d use to disinfect my toilet bowl. The other, a potent artificial “froot” flavor, no doubt meant to smell “fresh,” in fact smells like the solid air freshener in the nearest public men’s room. Together, they smell just plain bad.
The fruit/aquatic/pseudo-woods arrangement is potent, linear, and lasting, which I suppose is great if you like this sort of thing. The drydown reveals the abrasive woody amber in near isolation, relieved only by a trace of dish washing detergent white musk. The whole thing is a hackneyed idea, distinguished only by the stunning ineptitude of its execution. Wear it only around people you hate.
Frty and generic scent, synthetic and on my skin really very dull. Mandarin lolly top nose lead into styrax and lots on benzoin. The assigment of a chemistry class project. The decent longevity of five hours is a drawback in this case.
I recently have begun dipping my toe into artisan/niche perfumery and I decided to sort through the designer frags in the cupboard to decide what I should keep or toss. i couldn’t recall why I haven’t worn this one in awhile. I tried it on and was immediately reminded. On my skin, it opened with a burst of citrus and then became treacly sweet….and then it just would not go away. I just kept on smelling it to the point where I wasn’t sure it was still there or that it might be a flashback from some sort of olfactory PTSD.
Fragrances are very individual and I have to admit that sweet smelling fragrances often don’t work well for my skin type. That’s probably the reason why for a long time I kept to some very safe citrus choices. Recently I have found that all sweet/floral scents do not behave in the same way. There is nothing in this scent (not the amber, violet or mandarin) that I haven’t encountered in other scents that agree with me very well. Consequently, I now try, whenever possible, to obtain a sample and try it on different body areas on more than one day before I buy….except incense fragrances, particularly Dzongkha. No way to go wrong with that one.
Ghastly stuff. Very very sweet, fruity, metallic. Juvenile.
My personal collection now exceeds 300 bottles and Diesel, Only the Brave, is my #1 (favorite) in the collection. I am greatly suprised to see/read the negative comments. Only the Brave comes out of the gates with clean citrus(y) scent and then settles into a fresh scent with a unique finish - somewhere between a wood(sy) and fruit scent. The beauty is - the Wow Factor (or compliments from the opposite sex). Perhaps it is just how the fragrance mixes with my body chemistry, but on every occasion I have worn Only the Brave, I have received at least one compliment. The sillage and projection are great. If there is any deductions from perfection, I wish it had just a little more longevity. It will last a solid 6 hours, sometimes a little longer, sometimes - not so much. Six hours exceed many colognes out there - and I am often very critical in the longevity ranking.. Any time of year and any occasion - Only the Brave fits..!! If you want to be noticed (in a good way), this cologne deserves to be added to your collection. Every day is a gift..