Reviews by michailG

    Showing 1 to 30 of 121.

    Eau de Gaga by Lady Gaga

    Eau de Gaga: An initial blast of citrus-limes and later a floral accord that gives hesperides an airy feeling. Then I think some herbal notes kick in and spoil it for me. Like Declaration there is something that I really dislike. If I had to describe this accord I would say that it reminds me of aniseed. If there is leather I can't detect it. What I do get midway is a light smell of rubber. The longevity is ok and the silage is not so weak but to me the whole composition is such a copy/cut that I can only describe it as generic … or to be honest just cheap. Even if right now it is going for 13€ at Helsinki's main department store with a bonus shower gel, I could not bring myself to buy this. I thought that even for free I wouldn’t wear it. Indeed it is definitely quite masculine (in a generic kind of way) and I can imagine most women would stay away from this. This said this fragrance has a serious marketing problem ... unless all of the sudden men will start appreciating Gaga's entrepreneurial endeavors into the fragrance world. Anyway, I saw online that at some places Eau de Gaga was sold for 100$ and I can only say that paying anything more than 20$ for this fragrance is just nonsensical.

    20th January, 2015


    Lavandula by Penhaligon's

    I purchased Lavandula a few days ago from Penhaligon's after testing it a couple of times. This is an extraordinary fragrance but since it is marketed as feminine and it is Lavender centered after all, I suggest to any man interested in fougeres not to shy away. It is a herbaceous, fresh and rather dry composition with a bit of floral sweetness (depending on the temperature), all of this making it soothing, gentle and well balanced. It leaves a gorgeous discreet trail in the air around the wearer. Be aware not to over-apply because it may turn cloying. It is a perfume that I would have never considered if I hadn't tested it. I admit that the 60% discount was very advantageous and so I am quite pleased as this is a very distinct and well-crafted day scent which was what I was looking for. It is an edp but it is not a monster of silage ... in fact it has that certain Penhaligon's soapiness and transparency. If you consider Lavandula apart from the somewhat conservative pedigree of Penhaligon's, you may too find it to be a very well executed and even eccentric fougere. Overall, as pleasing as this perfume may be to me, it certainly is a try-before-you-buy.

    04th January, 2015


    Silences by Jacomo

    I am pretty sure my bottle is not from 1978 as I purchased it online a few months ago. From an online search I did I think it is from 2004. This eau de parfum is such a euphemism! I have been using it for 3 months and I can't wait for it to be finished and done. I don't hate it but I really think that it is a superfluous fragrance. The connection with Channel 19 was the main motivation to blind buy it from for all together 40 something euros. When I first opened the box the smell was beautiful but then wearing the actual juice has been a continuous let down. It starts sharp and just a bit tarty and then it quickly mellows into a thin green mossy skin scent. The alleged eau de parfum concentration here is super weak. I mean at first it seems overpowering but in 30 minutes it's so toned down.. which may be not so bad after all because it is also quite generic to my nose. The reference to Channel 19 is misleading and I urge prospective blind buyers to reconsider. I have again now been wearing it for almost two hours and I have to stick my nose on my skin to be able to get a good whiff of this still irrelevant concoction. Based on this fragrance I gave up on Jacomo eaux de parfum all together. I am so glad Silences is soon over because while it is not good it is not bad enough either to just through it away.

    27th November, 2014


    Vetiver & Black Tea by Kiehl's

    V&BT starts gorgeously with a bright blast of freshness. It reminds me quite a lot of a watered down version of the classic Bulgaris for men. Within an hour or less V&BT becomes a linear vetiver quite thin I must add with a subdued tea (is this black tea really?). After a couple of hours I detect a sharp accord that I find unpleasant and overly synthetic ... it almost gives me a headache. The dry down though is pleasant enough with a tangy vetiver and a hint of sweetness. The projection is below average but the longevity is ok ... very close to the skin (after 4 and a half hours). As an EdT this is thin, overly casual and generic. An uninspiring fragrance with not a drop of niche in its DNA, but still wearable. If one compares MUSK by Kiehl's and V&BT it feels like Kiehl's transmuted into Roger et Gallet.

    17th September, 2014


    Orange Flower & Lychee by Kiehl's

    Entirely irrelevant! I don't know what is going on at Kiehl's but they seem to try to replicate L'Occitane already average fragrances in a very middle-of-the-way fashion. Anyway, Orange Flower and Lychee is disappointing, generic, nauseatingly sweet and probably targeting a very young and naive audience.

    17th September, 2014


    Esvedra by Laboratorio Olfattivo

    I wore Esvedra all yesterday evening... I emptied a sample vial and let it envelope me. After a few hours I could still not get it. It was warm, and powdery as well as stern and cool. I thought that the vetiver was killing this one making it surprisingly uninteresting. After 5 hours I could clearly smell it on my skin (remember I had used up one while vial) BUT I could not say that I liked it or that I got addicted to it. The silage was respectable and the longevity quite good but it required generous application. I can easily imagine this being a man's fragrance, especially for those fond of Grey Vetiver by TF. BUt I wasn't seduced.

    05th September, 2014


    Sublime by Jean Patou

    Sublime EdP by Jean Patou, is a beautiful sweet oriental. It starts strong headed and mellows into a dusty and ambery accord. I think that in the mid to dry down orange gives vanilla a bit of a citric vibe that I find interesting in the overall sweetness. The silage is quite potent and the longevity is above average. It is not a very complicated and multifaceted composition; its main characteristic creamy sweetness and floral dustiness. Sublime is certainly not for the light hearted but with modest application it may keep you nice company without offending others around you.

    07th August, 2014


    Salina by Laboratorio Olfattivo

    As the name suggests, Salina is a salty marine EdP. I am not a big fun of marine perfumes, but I admit that at some point while sitting still in the outdoors I took a whiff of myself and I was transcended to a beach right next to the sea but not in an entirely pleasant way; some mellowness was missing in the composition. This was half an hour after application, and then Salina starts fading into an aquatic shadow. I used my sample vial in two goes in the same day because silage was so weak. Emptying the whole vial I could barely detect Salina on my skin after maybe 4-5 hours, while a day after I can just smell it a bit on my t-shirt. In my amateur book, this is not good performance from an EdP. The dry down is a light sweet, powdery woody accord while the salt doesn't entirely disappear and maybe it should. Sel Marin by James Heeley is quite superior to Salina. It seems to me that there is something missing in the composition that renders Salina rather generic and the hefty price of 98€ for 100ml doesn't justify such a generic accord. I don't like Salina and I certainly wouldn't invest in it.

    04th August, 2014


    No. 19 by Chanel

    My citrus period is over. I realized that after countless efforts to find a deep hesperidic EdP to satisfy my taste, I had started to appreciate instead the depth of some perfumes labeled as green-woody-balsamic. I loved Charmes & Feuilles by the Different Company, and currently cherish Fille en aiguilles by Serge Lutens. So I started testing so called green perfumes and No. 19 was so often mentioned that I gave it a go yesterday at my local department store. I was blown away by its character and tenacity. At times I find it a bit too floral for my taste but it is so well made and of such a high quality ingredients that it is no wonder it has lasted the test of time so well. A must-try for perfume lovers.

    27th July, 2014


    Les Nuits d'Hadrien by Annick Goutal

    I have tried the EdT in what is supposedly the feminine bottle. I tried it twice, the first time applying 3 sprays. I found it interesting enough to give it another go. The second time I sprayed 5 times! My verdict is this: fantastic opening with citrus, florals and herbs with an exciting accord. This phase of excellence lasts maybe 20 to 30 minutes. Then the fragrance although still enchanting just dies a fast death. The silage is pathetic after the 30 first minutes and after an hour is almost non existent; it becomes a skin scent that first it is enveloping but soon it becomes very quite. This skin scent phase lasts at best 4-5 hours (with the 5 sprays). For such an interesting fragrance to have so poor performance it makes it even more disappointing. Pity!

    30th June, 2014


    Cristalle Eau Verte by Chanel

    I love this one! So you can imagine how disappointing it is to me that it lasts but only for very briefly. CEV is super fresh and mellow and somehow less astringent than Eau de Lalique that I also like. I inquired about EdP concentration but in Holt Renfrew (Toronto) the sale assistance at the Channel counter didn't even know that this version of Cristalle existed. I find CEV unisex and so soothing but also so alarmingly short lived.

    22nd June, 2014


    Douglas Hannant by Robert Piguet

    DH has an accord of sweet fruit sorbét at first that soon is overpowered by heady gardenia. Overall I find it dusty and too sweet. Its projection is rather poor but its longevity is decent. I unfortunately had to wash it off as soon as I could after application. HD, as well as a couple of other Piguet fragrances that I have tried belong I think to another era that I cannot appreciate.

    22nd June, 2014


    Nuit Etoilée by Annick Goutal

    Citrus, herbs and fir dominate the enchanting first half hour or so. Then a slow death! On my skin Nuit Etoilée projects minimally and it doesn't last longer than a couple of hours after which it turns into a quite skin scent. Very disappointing. After trying I would not purchase especially for the retail price. This review is about the EdT in the 100ml blue glass bottle supposedly for men.

    17th June, 2014


    Neroli Portofino by Tom Ford

    I really love Neroli and orange blossoms occupy a distinct place in my childhood memories. Neroli Portofino is true to its name (take out Portofino). It is a glorious Neroli-Hesperidic concoction that is pure joy. But then I realized that I had to bathe in it to feel its presence and still its silage and longevity were average. If this was an EdC or a body splash I would have understood it, but since it's marketed as an EdP I am really dissatisfied with it. The price tag is inversely proportional to the juice inside that otherwise beautiful bottle. Gilded plates and a nice bottle don't make up for a perfume that does not deliver. Nevertheless NP will look great on your beauty counter!

    22nd February, 2014


    Acqua di Giò Essenza by Giorgio Armani

    I never really liked Aqua di Gió. For me it was too sharp and manly in a generic kind of way. Slumping Essenza and EdP on a heavier bottle was a very good marketing gimmick but that says nothing about the quality of the juice really. So Essenza is similar to the original, to me it’s still too sharp and commonplace manly. On my skin it mellows down after 10 minutes but the accord is thoroughly unpleasant. The dry down which is evident after 30-40 minutes of application is sweeter, softer and rounder, in a way more pleasant than the opening. I don’t know what exactly in Essenza I react badly to. All I know is that this is one of the few perfumes that I needed to wash off. And of course being an EdP this means that it doesn’t wash off that easily. Essenza is the kind of perfume that makes me more aware of the difference between designer and niche perfumes. It has above average silage and longevity and if you are fun of Aqua you will appreciate Essenza. But for me it is thumps down.

    08th February, 2014


    Fille en Aiguilles by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    Put simply: a beautiful coniferous perfume! I am not a big fun of pine or pine needles but this one is a must try for perfume lovers. Fantastic depth, warmth, silage and longevity.

    20th January, 2014


    Omnia Coral by Bulgari

    I have a flacon of 40ml Omnia Coral. It was a purchase based on an experiment. It was summertime in Vancouver and I tried it because I wanted to smell for myself the superiority of EdP. It was on offer at Winners and although it is suppsoedly a feminine perfume it was (mis?) placed at the men's unit. After trying it I spend 3-4 hours going around in the city and now and then I sniffed my wrist. I got a beautiful chocolate (vanilla), musky accord that was divine. After maybe 4+ hours the perfume was very much alive on my skin and so i returned and got the 40 ml thinking that I would use it as an evening perfume. I do and I enjoy it very much. Yesterday I tried Flower by Kenzo and while I wan't fond of the opening as much I kind of recognized the mid and dry dwon. I thought there was a resemblance to Omnia Coral. Now I see why; they were both created by Morillas. I find Coral perfectly wearable by men but certainly not for office use. Its silage is ok but it's longevity is great. I am glad I purchase it but I wouldn't re-purchase. However, it was because of Omnia Coral that now I am more interested in EdP and less in EdT concentration.

    09th November, 2013


    Eau de Fleurs de Néroli by Chloé

    a great fragrance

    I have been contemplating on purchasing EdFdN for some time. It took me quite some testing to decide that the oily residue on my skin after each application was indeed an indication of the good quality ingredients used in this certainly not niche perfume. The composition impressed me when I first tried EdFdN despite the fact that it was in the heart of freezing Nordic winter. I couldn't stop sniffing my wrist. I tried EdFdN in spring and summer too. And every time it transported me to my childhood when I was spending summer holidays in our mediterranean village home. More specifically it reminded me of the modest soap my granny used to buy for the bathroom. EdFdN brought back the feeling of being amongst friends, happy and carefree, in European South surrounded by lemon and olive tress. Fragrances can do many different things to us depending on our past experiences. EdFdN works for me and if you can still find it (I have heard many times that it is discontinued) just try it. I purchased EdFdN while in Canada for 65CAD.

    Pros: Neroli with a twist - good longevity and silage
    Cons: For an EdT, none!"

    12th October, 2013


    Cuir Venenum 03 by Parfumerie Generale


    CV is a leather perfume alright and maybe even a quite original one in its take on leather, but after generously emptying a tester on my skin I had very ambivalent feelings. It was very powdery, sour and dry with very little sweetness ... a dry leather without warmth. What really spoiled it for me was a dirty accord. It was like I was smelling unwashed hair. CV was enveloping with a good silage for the first couple of hours then slowly it disappeared. After 4-5 hours strangely enough there was no trace of it on my skin which now that I think about it, it was probably for the best. Disappointing!

    Pros: dry take on leather
    Cons: dirty accord "

    04th September, 2013


    Sushi Imperiale by Bois 1920

    quite excellent

    BOIS 1920 offers fragrances that are excellent and potent but a bit old fashioned. I have tried RR, VdV and SI and from the three I find Sushi Imperial the most wearable one. As the other BOIS 1920 Sushi Imperial too has outstanding silage and longevity. But it also has a somewhat modern feeling to it, that makes it more agreeable. SI is however not an outstanding composition ... to me too it is somehow familiar. I think that it reminds me of Le Péché by Eisenberg which I remembered I liked. I don't understand the name Sushi Imperial but then neither do I understand Vento nel Vento! By the way, Sushi Imperial seems not to be in production, or at least BOIS 1920 doesn't list it anymore in their website.

    Pros: outstanding silage and longevity
    Cons: not so original composition"

    03rd September, 2013


    Cozé 02 by Parfumerie Generale

    beauty in a bottle

    On my skin Cozé starts with a very mellow, sweet and dry medicinal accord, it turns incense like an hour later and settles into a vanilla comforting soft-bed of beauty. If this was more gourmand I wouldn't have liked it but it is not and therefore I enjoy it tremendously. Silage is very good and longevity excellent.

    Pros: sweet and dry

    21st August, 2013


    L'Eau Chic by Nicolaï


    Fresh but not silly, herbal but not like a mediterranean herborarium, powdery but not stuffy and green but not grassy. I grew up with modest geraniums everywhere in our garden. This I would not consider a geranium centered composition just because my nose tells me differently. A piquant clove, if any, does the trick for me and I think that l'eau chic is superb all the way. And for an eau it has very good silage and longevity: 4 hours and still quite potent. The dry down of LeC reminds me of my favorite Eau de Sisley no3 but I don't mind at all, because I prefer the refine subtlety of LeC. Well done!

    Pros: fresh and green but spicy too

    18th August, 2013


    L'Eau Mixte by Nicolaï

    veeery pleasant

    L'eau Mixte is a beautiful eau de cologne. The lemon is just happiness and layering it with mint and rose (these stand out for me) makes a compelling composition. This is a very safe fragrance and very inoffensive. There is a brightness but also a depth to it that I appreciate very much. My only problem with L'eau Mixte is its moderate silage which is explained by the fact that it is after all an eau de cologne. The longevity though is good for a cologne and well into 4-5 hours. I read somewhere that this is because of musks at the base. Indeed, towards the dry down I was reminded of Body Shop's White Musk perfume oil I used to wear 25 years ago. I would love L'eau Mixte in higher concentration.

    Pros: very beautiful take on citrus
    Cons: moderate silage"

    18th August, 2013


    Aura Maris by Lorenzo Villoresi

    divine but short-lived

    Aura Maris starts with a blast of divine bitter sour citrus very interestingly layered. This is the phase I loved but it only lasted 30 minutes. Soon after AM stays so close to my skin that I can barely detect it. After 4 hours AM disappeared into a sweet and powdery shadow with a hint of citrus (funnily enough citrus notes popped up after rubbing my skin with saliva!). I tried AM in a cool Scandinavian August evening and found its silage and longevity to be rather poor. I wish AM was more lasting because the little it lasts it is truly gorgeous.

    Pros: gorgeous opening
    Cons: poor silage and longevity"

    16th August, 2013


    Gris Clair by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    cris clair by an untrained nose

    I actually bought a sample from lovely Naz at Vancouver's The Perfume Shoppe. Naz suggested to try it because I might liked it. Anyway, today I tried Gris Clair on my skin. As an untrained nose, I can say that GC is well made, resinous sweet, but not overly so, lasts for 4+hours when at that point its projection starts to compromise and then it turns into a very distinguishable close to the skin scent, but still not a skin scent. It is overly rather warm, spicy, woody, resinous (sorry for repeating myself), and in fact to my nose it is not the lavender that is prominent nor the amber. Gris Clair has for me a star-anise accord that I can't take out of my head. Star-anise is not listed as a note and I assume that since no other reviewer mentioned it, it simply isn't there. But for me all notes blend into this soft and somewhat sweet kind of aniseed. I have a strong association between aniseed and a particular alcoholic drink (ouzo) which I don't like. And unfortunately for me this association (this is why I think of GC as interestingly familiar) totally spoils it. GC is quite beautiful in an old fashion way but at the same time it is very wearable and unisex - men though might like it more - but in any case it is not for the office... if you like it keep it for weekends and special occasions. Some (like Aedes) categorize Gris Clair as a fougere... I am not sure, but if GC is a fougere, it is not a lighthearted one.

    Pros: well made, interestingly familiar, enveloping, potent but not offensive
    Cons: great projection that after 2-3 hours diminishes"

    10th August, 2013


    Fraîche Badiane by Maître Parfumeur et Gantier

    Olfactory but disappointing

    I purchased Fraiche Badiane after the raving reviews by some highly regarded basenoters. I tried it full of expectations and once again I was reminded how subjective and emotional liking a perfume is. Fraiche Badiane is well made with high quality ingredients. It starts with a blast of zesty citrus but it mellows down within half an hour into a conventional linear citrus fragrance of no depth, low projection and - when in its dry down - quite some admirable longevity. FB became a skin scent within 1 hour, but the base notes are still traceable on my skin 6+ hours after application! Overall, FB is an olfactory citrus fragrance with an old world feeling. The flacon and the cap with the oversized red sparkling rock is pompous and not well balanced (a small bottle with a big glitchy cap). Although I appreciate some of the quality FB demonstrates I cannot say that I like to smell it on me. In addition, the concentration of FB is of an eau de toillette and while the quality is good it doesn't justify the hefty price tag especially given that its projection is so poor.

    Pros: old charm and quality
    Cons: old-fashion with a feeling of staleness"

    18th July, 2013


    Iskander by Parfum d'Empire

    superb citrus

    I tested Iskander after some time reading about it and contemplating a blind buy. I am glad I tried it because I can honestly say that it seems to me to be the holy grail of citrus perfumes. It is a glorious bitter dry citrus that lasts and lasts. The herbal accord keeps it light and translucent. It is however a quite uninteresting composition in the sense that it is basically citrus. I miss complexity and what I call depth to ground the citrus note. I am glad I tried Iskander for another reason too; I realized that my tastes have changed and I should no longer search for predominantly citrus and green perfumes, as I have been doing for a few years now. Even some distinguished ones, like Iskander, make me think of them as somewhat generic, although I know they are far from it. I can still enjoy them but not on my skin. Maybe my citrus period is finally over!

    Pros: the ultimate citrus
    Cons: lack of complexity

    16th June, 2013


    Mimosa Pour Moi by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    mimosa or not its is uninteresting

    If you, unlike me, are a lover of "real" fragrances of flowers, woods, fruits, etc. then you should give Mimosa Pour Moi a try. On my skin it starts overly sweet and floral and continues sweet and powdery. After a couple of hours when it mellows down there is a more delicate mimosa fragrance... like the real thing. Alas MpM leaves me very indifferent. It is however wearable and long lasting ... just not good for me.

    Pros: longevity
    Cons: sweet powdery and too real

    05th June, 2013


    West Broadway by Bond No. 9

    potent but not special

    West Broadway is at first very astringent but soon mellows down to a rich sweet floral. After an hour on my skin incense kicks in. From then on it develops a sweet powdery accord and remains fairly sweet and linear BUT lasts for good 10 hours. After 3 hours WB doesn't project that much but if you like this kind of perfumes this will delight you because it lingers on for so long. Unfortunately for me it didn't work as the most interesting part was the incense phase but then the overall floral sweet theme was too much. WB by Bond no.9 is definitely a well made eau de parfum with the quality and longevity an eau de parfum ought to have but few do.

    Pros: extraordinary longevity
    Cons: nothing special

    02nd June, 2013


    JF by Floris


    I am writing this review based on my experience from JF in the light blue package. It may be a reformulation, but this fragrance is just a BIG and costly disappointment! It starts with a floral citrus accord that is very fine but so weak that I thought that something was wrong with me so I went back and sprayed some more (5 times). To no good! 5 minutes after application JF stays so close to the skin that I can't believe that I have used a fragrance at all. Such poor performance I would never have expected from such a praised fragrance maker. Maybe next time I would need to shower in it (although for the asking price this should would be highly wasteful). Sorry FLORIS but based on JF and LIMES that I have tried I can honestly say that I am not interested in you any more ... no matter how old and accomplished perfume house you may be.

    Pros: very promising!
    Cons: 5 minutes after application is becomes a skin scent!

    01st June, 2013

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