Reviews by michailG

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    Contre Pouvoir by Brécourt

    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.

    25th April, 2015

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    Les Ephémères: Rosa Gallica by Brécourt

    Rose is used and abused so much so that finding a rose centered niche perfume that is exquisite is rare. Rosa Gallica is a translucent woody rose, linear and reliable, but uninspiring. Brecourt fragrances have exemplary silage and longevity and RG is no exception. I have RG on for 8 hours and it is still alive on my skin and clothes. Too bad that it is nothing special.

    25th April, 2015

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    L'Amoureuse by Brécourt

    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.

    16th April, 2015

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    Mauvais Garçon by Brécourt

    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.

    15th April, 2015

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    Harâm / Farah by Brécourt

    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.

    14th April, 2015

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    Eau Blanche by Brécourt

    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!

    11th April, 2015

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    Eau Libre by Brécourt

    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.

    10th April, 2015

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    Aromatics Elixir by Clinique

    I always found AE attractive but also overwhelming for me to try it on my skin. Years after smelling it on a dear friend yesterday I came across a sample. I am wearing it 5 hours now and it is still very potent although nothing compared to the super heady opening. Everyone says that AE is a floral and/or green chypre. For me this is a sweet, floral with green undertones and a kind of dirtiness (or maybe this is the leather accord others talk about). This accord is the most staying impression I have of what I am wearing right now. The silage is really powerful and over-applying will give you and the people around you a headache. Longevity seems above average. I will keep on using my sample but I am not taken by AE. I am certainly glad that I tried it though. It is a must try for perfume lovers and although AE has lasted the test of time I do think that it is dated. Can sensuality be dated? Somehow, I think it can. This may be the holy grain for many but not for me.

    21st March, 2015

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    Julia by Téo Cabanel

    Julia is a heady fruity floral. It is interesting that citrus notes are listed in the base because I could swear they were evident already on the top. The main accord as far as I can tell is cherry blossom although this is not listed at all. Another feeling I get is that of good old fashioned but refined hair spray. Julia is potent, with excellent silage and longevity. If you are in love with this creation by TC but find it too pricy, then why not try Eau des Jardins or Eau Ensoleillante by Clarins. Julia reminded me very much of one of the two but I cannot recall exactly which one. All and all Julia is another beauty by Cabanel.

    14th March, 2015

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    Oha by Téo Cabanel

    Something makes this floral quite a smoky one at least for the first hour or two. Oha is absolutely divine and a must try for perfume lovers. Its enveloping powdery trail it's quite unique (or the very least uncommon). There is sweetness but not overwhelming. This is maybe hard for men to pull off... but as always fragrances are very subjective especially the good ones! The dry down is exceptional and I can't stop sniffing my wrist.

    11th March, 2015

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    Early Roses by Téo Cabanel

    In the 70s my mother got a tiny wooden perfume vial of Bulgarian rose and the pungency of that rose is what I remembered smelling Early Roses. But ER is a much more delicately constructed rose. The initial blast is breathtaking, and after a few minutes roses turn from predominantly dusty to sugary, but not syrupy. This accord of what reminds me a good quality rose lokum lasts for approx. 4-5 hours and it is wonderful. The dry down is dominated by a subtle amber and musk, and only a shadow of rose. ER is a beautiful rose-centered composition and although it starts like a power house it is not long that it turns into a more transparent (but in no way watered down) accord. I would say that silage and longevity are pretty good but I wouldn't call this a monster perfume, which is probably a good thing. A must try for lovers of rose fragrances. Although rose is so overused in perfumery it is rarely that I come across a rose fragrance that is not heavy and suffocating. Although ER leans to feminine, I think that if worn with the right attitude and appropriately layered it could work on men too.

    10th March, 2015

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    Méloé by Téo Cabanel

    Méloé is a safe bet especially for men who wish to wear a floral+fresh+herbal fragrance without smelling too "frivolous" or too "old school". It is a take on the fougére or barber shop cologne with a bit of a twist but still nowhere near exceptional or innovative (some of Villoresi's creations were more niche I think). It is exactly the kind of accord that I find excellent for a soap but too generic for a fragrance. It is a good fougére but there are so many more interesting and long lasting neroli-centered or hesperidic perfumes that this, like a few other in the same category (Kafkaesque in his excellent review makes a link to Aventus), seem superfluous to me. Easy to wear ... or too easy to wear. No niche here, just expensive pleasant inoffensive and well-made airiness. Average silage and below par longevity, as expected by this category of fragrances. Still this is probably the most easily wearable and certainly unisex (masculine-leaning) offering from Cabanel; just not for me.

    08th March, 2015

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    Alahine by Téo Cabanel

    Ambery, sweet benzoin and a rich rose is all I get but wow isn't it powerful! Silage and longevity are well above average. I tried this and went out to an event. After some time I realized that at times I was smelling something around me that was very warm and sweet and strangely old fashioned ... somehow out of place. I could not place the source of the smell but then I thought it must be me! Alahine is not easy to carry nowadays but it is a pleasure nevertheless. Not my style but worth trying and experiencing it.

    07th March, 2015

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    Barkhane by Téo Cabanel

    I recently purchased the sample pack by Téo Cabanel's very nice online service. I must congratulate them because the care they put in those sample packs (for 11,5€) is quite rare. Having tried only three of their perfumes I can already say that I find Barkhane quite enchanting. An oriental sweet vanillic gournand (a bit boozy even) with above average silage and longevity (more than 6 hours), and with an exceptionally pleasant almost addictive dry down. Unfortunately it is this dry down that captivates me therefore I can't say that Barkhane is an overall remarkable creation. It is not to my taste anyway. What I can say is that it shouts old school richness and depth, and it must be composed by high quality ingredients.

    07th March, 2015

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    Absolument Absinthe Le Parfum D'Interdits by Liquoristerie de Provence

    Absolument Absinthe offers a great value for money sample pack. From the samples I received and tried Le Parfum D' Interdits (AALePdI) is my favorite. I also tried their classic creations for men, women, as well as the gendered 13th Note offerings. AALePdI is a green flowery light composition that it is pleasant and wearable and unisex enough. It has average silage and above average longevity. For much greater longevity and silage I would recommend the oriental gourmand of the series which I think is the 13th Note for women. In general the offerings I tried from this house demonstrate the use of high quality ingredients, seamless compositions, and an unmistakable old school vibe. None of the perfumes I tried is to my taste but I am sure plenty of people appreciate the old fashion feeling of Absolument Absinthe. These are definitely not ground breaking perfumes and expectations from the "mystical" Absinthe connection aren't fulfilled. But at least AALePdI is pleasantly unisex and wearable just don't expect too many compliments ... or looks of horror and disgust. I strongly suggest to try a few times before you buy.

    22nd February, 2015

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    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

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    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

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    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 Allbeauty.com 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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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