I would have expected that all privé offerings were eau de parfum. But nope, Vétiver d' Hiver, as Vétiver Babylone is renamed, is an edt. Not that terrible, you will say. Well, let's move on the experience of VdH on my skin. It kicks off brilliantly with esperidic notes. These last for a couple of hours and are wonderfully green and yellow, and maybe the intensity I detect is due to some spiciness. Then VdH turns into an airy green citrus fragrance slowly fading away into a thin green accord. The overall development took on my skin maybe 4 hours, which is not bad. However, the dry down is a big let down. I can't overcome the thinness and commonplaceness of what is left of VdH. Now, I may be very wrong thinking that VdH would perform better if it was an edp, oilier and somehow deeper. In any case, for its retailing price VdH ought to perform much better. This is certainly not recommended for blind buying and even to frivolous perfume collectors I would suggest multiple testings. The neutral is because although the opening 2 hours of VdH are heaven, the dry down is truly uninspiring.
This one is quite special! I purchased Close you eyes and... a few weeks ago but only today I gave it a full day wear. It is a rose centered perfume of pure beauty. The accord of the spicy rose that I still get five hours after application is just beautiful. I just close my eyes and go on this olfactory trip that at times seems almost religious. Is there incense here?! After 5+ hours the projection is minimal but I can still get wafts now and then. It is true, Close your eyes and... could have had better longevity but I don't complain because what I can still smell is divine.
Rock Crystal is quite an extraordinary fragrance although not groundbreaking. It is an enchanting woody resinous incense composition of high quality ingredients. While it is not a rich or thick fragrance it manages to linger for hours and hours. I find RC dry and as it progresses it becomes woodier. Cedar and/or pine friends tell me they smell on me after 3-4 hours of wearing RC. RC reminds me of a superior version of Jaisalmer. Sillage is excellent for 3-4 hours, and longevity too for +8 hours and on cloths more than a day. I must say that the initial accord of RC smells a bit acrid to me so I am more fond of the mellower stages that it enters 30 minutes after its opening. The perfumes by Olivier Durbano are not exactly rare but they are hard to find. RC is unisex.
This is a review of the edt in the rectangular bottle. Eau Duel is more than an excellent composition of a vanilla centered fragrance. The ingredients are of good quality, and the vanilla is true to itself as much as it can be without being too sweet. Unfortunately, frankincense doesn't stand out enough on my skin. Therefore, for me Eau Duel has rather a linear accord of a bit dark and spicy vanilla. I am not fond of vanilla as such, although I recognize how soothing it can be. ED has excellent sillage for the first three hours, but its longevity is quite outstanding surpassing eight hours and on cloths more than a day. Eau Duel is a great offering for those who love vanilla. The reason I give a neutral is that I am not so appreciative of vanilla centered fragrances, and because much to my dismay the interplay with frankincense is not working for me (on my skin).
Like This put a smile on my face at the first sniff. I tested it three times. It is rather a compelling and well made perfume with an interesting opening of sweet but fresh hesperidic accord of pumpkin-carrot. It morphs into a quirky herbaceous gourmand with a comforting dry down. It is not sirupy but it does have a sweetness to it. LT lasts for more or less 8 hours on my skin and its projection is above average. It is cheerful and gourmand and a wonderful perfume overall. Alas I found it a bit overpowering in its uniqueness. I was very close to purchasing 100ml when I thought that I would get tired of smelling that strikingly. So although LT is wonderful it is not that easy to wear, or rather it is not my kind of perfume. Still, if you come across it, do try it! As for the connection to Tilda Swinton ... just forget about it.
Immortale Beloved is a spicy sweet amber quite oriental in its effect and a bit overbearing. It starts with an almost medicinal accord of sweet ripe fruits (strange I know!) then it mellows into a sweet tangy amber, and dries down hours later into something that reminds me of Arabic coffee. It is wearable in a decadent and kind of on your face way. The longevity, silage and quality are great, but then again you will appreciate IB only if you like this kind of perfumes. For me IB is heavy and overly "perfumey".
I think Micotti got this one right. Métaboles is a beautiful multifaceted perfume. It starts minty spicy and sweet (I thought a spicy floriental at first) and actually the opening is the least to my taste. But then soon after incense appears that is divine. The dry down is sweet and musky but not at all syrupy; in fact it is transparent and uplifting. Métaboles is my favorite from YS-Uzac so far. Just beautiful with good longevity and silage.
BOM Incense is overall a very green incense. It starts with a blast of a celery accord that is acrid and overwhelming. It soon morphs into a striking incense but the celery accord stays on. It takes a few hours for BOM to reveal a mellower green incense. By this time I have gone through instances when I find it overbearing and instances that I find it intriguing and sophisticated. This is quite an accomplishment considering the initial kitchen ambience of BOM. This otherwise very potent and somehow formal perfume is still not appropriate for a night at the Opera or a romantic dinner... neither for work, nor a party for that matter. Longevity is not exceptional at around 5-6 hours on my skin, although on cloths BOM sticks around for days. Sillage is excellent, thus I suggest cautious application. Incense lovers should give this ... a few trials.
Pohadka is quite a strange name, isn't it? Internet says it is Check for fairy tale. This starts as a sweet, spicy, pungent floral or is it some kind of heavy herbal ?... I don't know. Very soon after I get tobacco which I guess makes Pohadka a serious adult affair. I don't have the nose to discern much development here. I can only say that at later stages too Pohadka sustains a sweet-herbal accord. Pohadka is rather a seamless composition. After 7 hours on my skin it leaves a sweet spicy trace that is barely noticeable. But when I breath onto my skin, I can get a spicy deeper herbal accord. On my clothes it is of course more evident but there the spiciness is considerably less. I have been wearing Pohadka for a couple of days now and I can't make up my mind about it. The sillage is ok and in fact any stronger might have rendered it offensive. The longevity is average (6 hours). At times I have been getting whiffs that are almost intoxicating but the overall feeling is that of wearing a sweet overbearing perfume. In fact to be honest I find Pohadka too perfumey. It has this vibe of a perfume of a past era ... not my cup of tea.
I am attracted to Iris because I have discovered a couple of perfumes constructed around Iris that are beautiful. Iris by Le Galion though is not a favorite, but it is not not that bad either. I have been wearing it for two weeks now and here are my impressions: it starts with a cheerful flowery blast; it develops into a feel-good, well-behaved bouquet with a bit of tanginess; a few hours later it develops a rather beautiful accord of wood, and although there is none listed, some illusion of vetiver. Iris reminds me first of Eau Mohéli, then of CK1 and hours later of one of the more virile Bulgari (I don't remember which). So, this one requires plenty of sampling and patience. Iris is not very dated but it does not break any frontiers in perfumery either. All and all "sympathetic". Longevity and silage are above average.
Such an inconspicuous but beautiful offering from Le Galion! A heavenly fragrance that opens with a blast of freshness and develops into a beautiful and seamless cologne. The silage is modest and the longevity on my skin is approx. 4 hours. After that EN lingers on as a skin scent till it disappears 5 hours after application. For its brief journey EN does well but I would have expected a bit more from an eau de parfum especially of this price range. If ever Le Gelion decides to launch a concentré version of EN it would be great news.
WHIP is a marvel. I would have never thought to classify this as feminine; it is certainly unisex. This is all about citrus fruits, with a bitter lemon accord; a twisted fougère and a zesty one too. Thankfully, I get little to no tarragon as I am not fond of anise. I also get very little floral notes, although the lightness accompanying the zest I so much love about WHIP might be due to the florals. The composition certainly works. On my skin WHIP never really loses its zest although after three hours it does start to get a bit soapy. One could find WHIP a bit too old fashioned and linear; however, for citrus lovers it might be just excellent. The silage becomes moderate after one hour or so but the longevity is remarkable: I could detect WHIP on my skin the morning after (12+ hours after application). WHIP is standing out in the sea of perfumes. Just try it. Le Galion offers generous samples for purchase alas not cheaply.
10th August, 2015 (last edited: 11th August, 2015)
Jack is a beautiful, seamlessly composed perfume. It starts cheerful and fresh-tangy, but round and full-bodied. The opening is really nice. Then the earthy-herbal character kicks in along with a distinct sweetness. From then on Jack lasts for hours and hours becoming more of an incense leather perfume that is actually quite wonderful. Jack is not a traditional unisex eau de parfum. Sometimes its sweetness bothers me on my skin when for instance towards the dry down I detect a gourmand accord I can't put my finger on. Overall though I think the Frankincense adds to Jack a touch of spirituality that I believe may be bringing the whole composition to an area of niche that many would appreciate. There is a Penhaligon's quality in Jack but this is richer more dandy and less gentlemanly. I can go on and on with this one, because it is so interesting in that non-CdG way. Silage here is very strong at first and depending on the temperature it can stay strong (so better not over-apply), and longevity is just excellent with +8 hours on my skin and probably much more on fabric. Well done!
17th July, 2015 (last edited: 22nd July, 2015)
Reading the notes listed for Siberian Shewolf I am impressed because what I got upon application of the perfume oil was surprising with a very jovial ripe citrus fruits accord that lasted for a couple of hours or so. After that stage the perfume became sweeter and mellower but that juicy tarty acidity didn't disappear altogether. I am not sure if it is a particular skin-perfume reaction. The creamy vanilla that I get was spiced-up, and tarty and made SShe a great joy to wear and smell. SShe reminds me of something else with its tarty creamy spiciness but I can not put my finger on it. It just smells familiar and soothing but not spiritual as much as happy. The opening phase reminds me of my childhood olfactory memories in the Mediterranean... playing at unattended citrus fruits tree groves, or savoring orange peel vanilla custard sprinkled with cinnamon and infused with cloves. Whatever it is, that makes this perfume so enchanting I am all for it. This is the second perfume oil I like from the three I have tested by Smell Bent. Somewhere else I have written that I doubted the niche quality of Smell Bent. I am not ready to take this back because although SShe is a perfume I gladly wear, it still does not strike me as unique. I live in northern Europe where currently we endure a pretty mild summer. Although SShe could be categorized as a winter perfume, I will wear it again this evening at a party and if I notice something special I will report it. The silage of SShe is average but longevity is quite good at 8+ hours. This though is not the kind of perfume that lingers the next day, although rubbing my skin where I had applied yesterday I can still smell it on my fingers. All and all, bravo Brent on the Siberian Shewolf which to my dismay is not available anymore from smell bent. Unless, it is now under plain Shewolf.
15th July, 2015 (last edited: 22nd July, 2015)
Ambre Noir starts heady and bitter sweet. I am not fond of the opening but thankfully it soon subsides into a sweet balsamic creamy accord that is heaven and which lasts and projects for hours. Longevity of 24+ hours is not a small accomplishment! All and all one of my favorites by Brecourt. Warning! take it easy on the application as little goes a long way with this one.
06th July, 2015 (last edited: 08th July, 2015)
Esprit Mondain or Wordly Spirit is basically a sweet, spicy woody composition that, as all Brecourt perfumes, it's seamless, of high quality ingredients, with excellent silage and great longevity. What is there not to like you may ask? Well I am afraid that there is a generic vibe to EM that is off putting. I have written before that the niche quality of Brecourt perfumes is an overstatement. EM is no exception. The twist I think is a bubble gum opening that is well made but too familiar although unusual for a "masculine" perfume. The overall impression of EM is sweetness in varying degrees and going through slightly different phases till the comforting mellow sweet dry down. Nothing spectacular but nevertheless reliable EM reminds me of another Brecourt creation, Mauvais Garcon. EM is however lighter and more wearable. I am afraid that I didn't enjoy MG and I don't particularly enjoy EM either.
Avenue Montaigne is a sweet, heady, fruity (predominantly) floral perfume with extraordinary silage (for at least 5 hours) and outstanding longevity (more than 10 hours and on fabric more than 20 hours). It is old fashioned, jammy and sour at times. Especially after 6 hours I felt the need to wash it off which I tried unsuccessfully. It was the sour tartiness that started to be disagreeable now and then after 6 hours. On my T-shirt however and after 20+ hours what I get is a sweet accord with a mellowed tartiness that is not sour. Overall, and regardless of the sourness that may be due to bad perfume-skin chemistry, AM is a (very) old-fashioned powerhouse that requires a lot of sampling before purchasing simply because it is very pungent and it can certainly be overpowering.
Brecourt lists these notes:
T: Saffron, Rose Bay, Cassis, Plum, Oudh
H: Tuberose, Rose, Ylang Ylang
B : Oudh, gurjan, Cipriol, Jatamansi, Amyris Sandalwood, Civet
They also categorize it as floriental fruity woody and they are quite right. Reading the list of notes it is quite amazing how well blended they all are. Agaressence is a warm sweet seamless composition. The opening (a good hour) is very potent and interesting. Silage is good for the first 3 hours when rose and plum dominate. After that Agaressence fades away substantially. 12+ hours after a generous application (a whole sample vial of 1,2ml) demonstrate outstanding longevity but they also include the time when Agaressence is a skin scent. I cannot tell if Oudh is important or not in the composition although the list of notes tells otherwise. Compared to for instance Kurdjian's, the oudh in Agaressence barely succeeds to stand out. Concluding this is not a masterpiece but it is more than decent. Still it is too sweet for me.
28th June, 2015 (last edited: 29th June, 2015)
ET is a seamless Iris centered perfume. All the notes work perfectly together from the effervescent opening to the divine smooth powdery dry down. All along what I thought was prominent was a beautifully crafted iris accord. If only Prada hadn't done it a few years earlier! From the opening of ET I had the deja vu of having layered Infusion d'Iris which was a favorite of mine. But although the two perfumes are similar, I think ET is more fun and uplifting than IdI which is drier and more austere. The vetiver and cedarwood at the dry down are mellowed by a lovely creamy mask but iris never disappears. I am not a perfume expert but ET really seems quite well crafted. Brecourt markets ET as feminine but I would say that Basenotes' characterization of it as unisex does it more justice. Although, I must admit Et is more flowery and sweet than most unisex perfumes. ET has above average silage but its longevity is outstanding well above 18 hours! This is Iris with a twist - not groundbreaking but really pleasant. For Iris lovers ET is I think a must try (not a blind buy though). A! about the name! yes what to say about this gimmicky name!? It says nothing about the perfume!
At first it's all melon! Cheerful and fun. Then it slowly dissolves into a seamless lighthearted melange of a floral fruity accord with indistinguishable notes. It is pretty fun to wear this but nowhere close to anything niche. The sillage is moderate and the longevity is average: after 7 hours Off to Ibiza has a faintly noticeable dry down of a sweet vaguely tartly mask. The ingredients must be of quite good quality; however, personally, in this category of perfumes, I would rather go for Diptyque's Eau Moheli.
I think Brent wisely decided to discontinue this one. I got the perfume oil during the last garage sale. I haven't used perfume oils since my early sandalwood-and-white-mask-Body-Shop years (late 80s early 90s). I thought that the oil would last longer and have a milder but potent silage. Mountain High started with a beautiful cannabis note that swiftly mellowed to a nice green-sweet accord. This transition took place within 15 minutes after application on my skin. Then the perfume just slowly disappeared! I used the perfume oil both in the North and in the South of Europe (dry-cold and humid-warm climates), a few times I over-applied but whatever I did the perfume just had minimal longevity and almost no projection. Neither my partner nor I could smell the perfume on me, in other words it is not that I grew anosmic to it. In effect I used the 10ml perfume-oil vial in a bit less than two weeks vexed by the fact that I could not get it last or project. I wrote to Brent enquiring if maybe that batch of Mountain High had somehow gone bad but, however polite he had been while I was ordering, he never replied. Anyway, this was a joy killer because I had "high" expectations and this perfume oil did not deliver. I also purchased Debonair, which is still in production, and I can tell you the difference is huge. Based on only the two perfumes that I have got I have started thinking that Smell Bent is not niche... maybe one day an upscale Demeter?! Well, the future will tell.
Oud Santal is such a strange thing. I am not fond of it but I truly think it is quite astonishing in some ways. It opens almost rancid with a prickly sweet leathery accord that I can't stand. The Iris is there and it is the first iris I dislike. It gives the composition a dryness which lasts well into the midlife and it might be the cause of the rancidity I get, I am not sure. Oud becomes prominent early on and it gives the whole weird and old fashioned concept a medicinal effect as well. I only like Oud Santal after 8 plus hours and even more the next morning! The further I get from the opening the better it seems. The longevity here is outstanding and the silage surely above average. I am not sure what rating to select for OS! It will be unfair for me to choose thumbs down but a thumbs up would not reflect my experience either. So a reluctant and confused neutral is my rating.
Poivre Bengale is a fresh spicy perfume with extraordinary longevity and very good silage. It is however rather old fashioned and too formal. I tried to dress it down with jeans but it still feels awkward. PB is not versatile or modern but if you happen to like this kind of composition then PB is reliable. As all the perfumes I have tried by Brecourt this one too is linear. All and all PB isn't extraordinary and if it is niche then I can only think that it may be so because of its high quality ingredients not its composition.
Rosa Gallica is a heady woody rose with a hint of incense. The rose here is deep, and strong, too strong for my taste. Maybe it is the combination of notes but the perfume on me is at points headache inducing. I am sure that there are rose perfume lovers out there that RG would appeal to. Brecourt fragrances have exemplary silage and longevity and RG is no exception. I put on RG and after 8 hours it was still going strong. I retested it recently and this time at some point I actually had to wash it off. The result was a mellowed down RG that was much more pleasant. Despite the wash off RG was sniffable on my skin the next morning. What I miss in RG is not more silage or longevity but some short of transparency and airiness; but then again this would be a different perfume.
25th April, 2015 (last edited: 23rd July, 2015)
Beautiful citrus fragrance similar to which I cannot think of. It is not sharp/rancid or sweet and although a bit on the traditional side of niche, I really like Contre Pouvoir - although some may find it similar to washing liquid. I find the composition such an accomplishment while longevity is average and silage is a bit below average. What I get from CB on my skin is a lovely vervain accord although no vervain is listed in the notes... this is why I find this an accomplishment. For citrus lovers this is one of the best perfumes and a must try. Most of Brecourt creations I have tried are linear and CP is no exception, but in this case I don't mind at all.
L'Amoureuse is a pleasant but not sophisticated floral. The opening is almost interesting with a beautiful smokey accord, but then for most of its life the composition is a transparent rose centered floral. The silage and longevity are way above average since after 10 hours I can still detect a clear light rose note on my skin. L'Amoureuse is far from niche and compelling. I think that if there were a few more robust notes involved to ground the composition and give it depth, L'Amoureuse could have been a beautiful unisex floral. As it is, there is nothing "L'Amoureuse" about it, more of an innocent floral with little personality suitable for a lovely ingénue. In fact L'Ingénu would have been a far more accurate name for L'Amoureuse.
Mauvais Garcon is a huge let down for me. Right from the start it reminds me so much of Rochas Man. I can't stop thinking how dated and cheap MG smells although not as bad as Rochas Man. To be fair to Bouge, MG is far from horrible as the ingredients are of high quality and the sweet, herbaceous, floral, resinous, woody ... sweet, and seamless composition would not disappoint lovers of this kind of perfumes. The longevity and silage are great. Unfortunately, this is not niche, groundbreaking or even a bit interesting as an olfactory creation. MG is boringly linear and I can only like it on my skin after 4-6 hours when it just gets softer and the overall sweetness fades away. But by that time I have grown very tired of MG.
Farah is a powdery sweet composition that would be greatly appreciated by those who like the smell of old hand bags with the smell of leather, lipstick and poudre and a hint of old perfume lingering. When I received my samples from Brecourt one vial with Farah was broken and the perfume had impregnated the carton box of the packaging. When I received the box it smelled sweet and comforting. I thought that Farah in that state was rather beautiful. Alas when later I tested Farah on my skin I was let down by the unremarkable sweetness and powdery accord. Farah is much better later in the dry down, especially after 10 hours! Then the creamy sweetness of the base notes stands on its own and it is rather superb. Silage and longevity are quite extraordinary. I just don't see the point of this creation as it is really nothing new, exciting or groundbreaking. It is well blended with high quality ingredients though and those in favor of old fashioned perfumes will probably like Farah.
Eau Blanche is an exquisite transparent fragrance. The hesperedic opening is not sharp but mellow like a dream, the progression is smooth and without any radical twists (see linear), and the composition remains light all the way. If ginger is that one note that makes the main accord so interesting then let be it; I cannot be sure but at some point I smell ink but in a very captivating way. I find Eau Blanche breathtakingly beautiful and definitely unisex. I only wish there was a bit more strength in it but even as it is, it's marvelous. Too bad Brecourt sent me only one sample of EB but 3 or 4 from Eau Libre that I don't care for at all! For funs of light minimalist interesting compositions that don't smell alien but damn good, EB is a must try. Bouge got this so right!
Eau Libre reminds so much of Cool Water and that genre of aquatics that I enjoy least. Sel Marin by Heeley is still my favorite in this category. EL is well made, with good silage and longevity but as it is not my kind of fragrance I don't appreciate it at all. The mint is a joy killer as is the rosemary here, and the marine accord just doesn't subside. I could describe my olfactory experience in two words: Cool Water! Better quality and more elegant surely but not enough to justify any hype.