Reviews by JackTwist

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    Showing 1 to 30 of 593.

    Iris Poudre by Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle

    A quite light mix of florals with iris hiding in there somewhere - I occasionally get a whiff of it, but it is never center stage, as one would expect with a scent named after it.

    Luca Turin gives it three stars and calls it "powdery fruit." He acknowledges perfumer Bourdan's penchant for making "sunny, fruity" scents and feels that the is what he does here with what might have been an interesting nod to the iconic Iris Gris.

    It is very nice, but ultimately too light and inconsequential to interest me. It's also a cheat in naming itself after an ingredient that many will seek out, only to be disappointed that it makes a mere cameo appearance.

    22nd January, 2015


    28 La Pausa by Chanel

    Luca Turin gives this four stars and dubs it a "woody iris." It is practically a soliflore in his book, matched only by the Serge Lutens Iris Silver Mist.

    I find it to be a perfectly pleasant pure iris note, which on me is slightly plastic, very dry and evocative of a unique leather. Fath's Iris Gris is the penultimate in the iris experience, matching the iris with a lovely peach note.

    The negative aspect of 28 La Pausa is its evanescence. It disappears so quickly, that its exorbitant expense makes it prohibitive as a purchase.

    Too delicate, considering the Lutens has more presence for half the price.

    21st January, 2015


    Velvet Curaçao by PK Perfumes

    This is an extremely light orange floral. The concentration of orange notes produces a familiar eau de cologne impression, but this is quite light, buoyed by obvious jasmine, and supported by labdanum and musk.

    There is both a sweetness and a harsh bitterness co-existing here.

    Pleasant, but not impressive.

    19th January, 2015


    Red Leather by PK Perfumes

    Deadidol's extensive review, the first on this page, pretty much exhausts the subject of Red Leather.

    Paul Kiler considers this his masterpiece, and although I will concur with him as to its success, I still hold out for his Gold Leather as his best.

    In any case, this begins with a wallop of sharp, dark, medicinal, almost iodine, notes, but wait ten minutes and it has settled down to a very dark and intense, but very pleasant and unusual leather. I imagine this might be what early scented leather did smell like early in the perfuming stage.

    I can't imagine a woman wearing it, unless she were also a biker, as it is very masculine, almost upsettingly so. This is for the macho man, sporting an acrid cigar and a neat glass of scotch.

    Interesting to say the least and worth a try if the above appeals to you.

    18th January, 2015


    Violet Chocolatier by PK Perfumes

    The fourteen or so ingredients that go into this gourmand scent take a while to settle down into a light floral pastry accord, which reminds me of L'Heure Bleue or Farnesiana.

    I am unable to detect the violet at all. It opens with cocao, which becomes to my nose, not powdery, but chalky. There is a sharp faint wood note, could it be the Pemou Root?, that is unpleasant. It goes through a period of settling down that is faintly reminiscent of Angel.

    Finally, fifteen minutes into the experience, there is the linear heart, for me the floral pastry scent, which, although devoid of either chocolate or violet at this point, is nonetheless, very pleasant.

    Worth a try, but be patient until this develops fully, before you judge.

    17th January, 2015


    Fleur Du Lac by Coty

    Coming between Elizabeth Arden's 1934 creation, Blue Grass, and Millot's 1947 creation, Insolent, Coty's 1942 Fleur Du Lac is a fusion of both visions.

    Translated as "lake flower," the name for this scent, still available for purchase on line, would at first denote the water lily. Alas, that flower has no scent.

    The obvious alternative is the stately reed. Fleur Du Lac has the celeriac notes of Insolent and the grassy, artemesia dry fragrance of Blue Grass. It is quite pleasant and quite demure, refreshing to splash on in the heat of summer.

    It's rather a find as I'd never heard of it before and it certainly doesn't have the press or exposure of other Coty scents of the past.

    Worth seeking out as the one ounce bottles of the cologne are very affordable.

    16th January, 2015


    Pentecost by PK Perfumes

    The effect of this scent is best described as a pale green reed note. Although not listed in the ingredients, the dry woody note of artemesia is most dominant to my nose. In fact it is the only linear note.

    I detect none of the "tons of roses" that are implied to be within, none of the other florals, or the incense notes.

    Just the linear green reed note. Disappointing and almost a non-scent.

    16th January, 2015


    Gold Leather by PK Perfumes

    This is that rarest of all things in the current world of perfumery - both unique and original.

    A burst of almond, though not listed in the ingredients, is the first impression. This is followed by sweet fresh fruit, which lead us to the essence of the scent - a linear and luscious guava laid delicately over a soft leather.

    This is very sophisticated and so far in my journey through PK Perfumes, my favorite. [I have tried five other PK fragrances, liking only two others, Carissa and Ginger Zest de Citron, but both of these I found derivative of - as in suggesting - past creations. Gold Leather is a new idea - a fruity leather.]

    My only caveat is, as with all of PK's scents, there are usually two dozen plus ingredients, yet, I am only aware of a very small handful at most. I am left wondering if the majority of these cancel each other out, and as such, may be a waste of precious and expensive oils for the perfumer.

    In any case, this is very much a winner in my book.

    13th January, 2015


    Ginger Zest de Citron by PK Perfumes

    This is the second PK scent I have liked out of the five I have tried.

    This opens for me with an orange mint freshness that is cool and refreshing.

    There is a hint of the numerous white florals (Mimosa, Ginger Lily, Freesia, Jasmines) lingering in the background.

    It then brings its heart to the fore which is reminiscent of the honeyed floral chypres of the 1930s and 1940s (Schiaparelli's Shocking comes to mind).

    The dry down is that of a light floral over a pleasant woody base.

    Most unusual and complicated. Mr. Kiler puts dozens of ingredients into his scents, but I can usually smell no more than a few. I wonder if he is wasting his money on purchasing oils that cancel each other out in his compositions.

    In any case, this is an enjoyable and uplifting scent, which I would think to be most successful on a hot summer's day.

    12th January, 2015


    Citrus & Wood by Yardley

    I must go with the majority on this one.

    Citrus & Wood is a refined, light, bracing scent, elegant and sophisticated. Hard to believe this comes from Yardley, but glad of it - especially the price, which you cannot beat.

    My dry down is that of mandarin floating over cedar and cumin. Very masculine, slightly naughty, decidedly sexy. Very well balanced.

    You have to be over 25 to pull this off, after that there is no appropriate age group limitation. Very classy and highly recommended.

    11th January, 2015


    Ere by PK Perfumes

    This scent opens for me with a blast from the base notes: patchouli, vetiver, oak moss, cedar, cyrpriol, and at first seems more to resemble a strong professional cleaning detergent than a perfume.

    It takes a short while for all this to calm down and for the fern heart note to emerge. The effect for me is like smelling green hay - I have no personal experience of the fern the perfumer uses, so must assume it is that which I am smelling.

    Perfectly pleasant scent, but I question why anyone would want to wear it.

    The other two reviewers on this page can detect far more than my nose can and have a totally different experience of it than I do.

    I can only give it a neutral review as I do not find it distinguished, simply accomplished.

    10th January, 2015


    Dirty Rose by PK Perfumes

    Unfortunately, for me, I detect no rose whatsoever.

    What I do get is a bitter oud leather, supported by amber and cinnamon.

    Unpleasant to my nose, but for those into oud and leather, this might prove to be

    09th January, 2015


    Violette by L'Aromarine

    There is an initial burst of anise and bergamot, then this scent settles down to be what it purports to be: a light eau de cologne redolent of violets.

    It is not powdery or soft, but strong, rich violet, as if you were actually smelling the European fragrant blossom itself.

    Very light and recommended for summer evening wear.

    Very affordable also. Thumbs up for this one.

    07th January, 2015


    Carissa by PK Perfumes

    Not having lived in southern California, I had never heard of the Carissa flower, described by perfumer Paul Kiler as a "white, five petal flower…its smell is heavenly, like gardenia and jasmine."

    It of course dominates the perfume it is named after, smelling very like jasmine, but with a dry green note that gives it a very spring-like, uplifting appeal,not at all heavy, as white florals may tend to be. The slightly mentholated tuberose and a hint of neroli supports it beautifully, without over-powering it. The base is a restrained mixture of sandalwood, myrrh, musk, opoponax, and ambergris, which gives the dry down subtle depth.

    Unfortunately, I do not detect the green rose note that other reviewers deem prominent. What I do detect is a lovely, light addition to the world of white florals.

    A very palpable hit!

    07th January, 2015


    Cafe Diem by PK Perfumes

    I am always vastly disappointed when a perfumer uses a plethora of ingredients for a scent, receives praise on the expert mix, and then my nose experiences but one note, and an unpleasant one at that.

    Such is the case with Paul Kiler's Cafe Diem - 24 ingredients and all my nose can detect is a very harsh, very dry, very sharp cypress note.

    From other praiseworthy reviews of this scent on the internet, I know it must be my nose and not the scent itself, but my rating must be based on my own experience.

    Hence the neutral.

    I have a sampler pack of ten scents from PK Perfumes and do hope the rest of my experience is better than my first.

    06th January, 2015


    Ambre Canelle by Creed

    A very heavy, rose and ambergris dominated scent that is slightly medicinal with a strong menthol note. Hard to believe a celebrity like Eva Peron wore this - it's more repellent than attractive- perhaps she wore it when she was around people she didn't like.

    With the heat of Argentina, this must have been positively mind and nose-numbing.

    Luca Turin did not like it, giving it only two stars and calling it a "light oriental." Light???
    He noted it was "strikingly devoid of either amber or cinnamon" and described it smelling "like a household product."

    Barbara Herman described it as a "good girl perfume mixed in with perspiration and lust" and noting its "skanky quality." She ultimately found it "heavenly."

    I find it "hellish."

    Top notes: Cinnamon leaves, Juniper Berry
    Middle notes: Rose, Cinnamon, Bay Leaves, Coriander
    Base notes: Ambergris, Musk

    29th December, 2014


    Figue Sauvage by Laurence Dumont

    To my nose this is a copy of Mugler's iconic Angel. The same coconut/vanilla/berry scent.

    The official notes of Ylang, Bergamot, Fig, Violet, Vanilla and Sandalwood for this scent do not at all register, with the exception of the vanilla, to my nose.

    It's certainly pleasant, but due to a lack of originality, I can only give it a neutral rating.

    If you are looking for fig - try L'Artisan's Figure Premiere, the first to use this note dead center, and the best I've found thus far.

    17th December, 2014


    Rose Oud by Laurence Dumont

    Like Dumont's Black Oud, this is a very successful Oud fragrance, warm, dry and inviting. The rose is gentle and the scent is worn close to the body.

    I usually loathe the smell of Oud, but the only times I have found it well balanced and inviting is in these two offerings from Dumont.

    Saffron, Rose, Oud, Leather - simple concoction. The rose is supported additionally by the unmentioned note of vanilla.

    Very affordable and very worth trying.

    17th December, 2014


    Vanille Monoï by Laurence Dumont

    Two of the notes listed are bogus; there is no white musk or frangipani in this scent. The floral note, according to the Dumont website, is Tiare.

    Coconut oil is used to bring out the scent of the Polynesian gardenia, known as Tiare. Thus the scent of that flower and the scent of coconut are often paired in Tiare oil extracts.

    The official site also lists rose and jasmine, but my nose does not discern these.

    What I do get is coconut and a dry leather scent reminiscent of oil cloth, not the leather note we all think of when referred to. The scent of the Tiare flower is lost.

    Had Frangipani (the Polynesian tuberose) been an ingredient, you couldn't help but notice, as it is not subtle.

    So, while the scent is unique (coconut and oil cloth), I can't say it is pleasant, thus the neutral review, as I am sure there is an audience out there for the unusual, as this scent certainly is.

    15th December, 2014


    L'Eau Vanillée by Laurence Dumont

    None of the notes listed are discernible to my nose. All I get is the bergamot and the vanilla - a very very light and nondescript scent.

    Pleasant but forgettable.

    15th December, 2014


    Vanille Framboise by Laurence Dumont

    The opening blast of aldehydes borders on candy sweet. This soon dissipates as the vanilla develops rather quickly.

    The raspberry enters and for a while, one has the effect of a very very pale version of Mugler's Angel.

    The effect is ruined for me by a very bitter wood note not listed in the official notes of this scent, which is very off-putting.

    The combination of an unpleasant base and the copy cat would be Angel attempt throws this out of the running for a wearable scent, however affordable it is.

    15th December, 2014


    Black Oud by Laurence Dumont

    For some time I have been intrigued with reviews of oud based scents, but on each attempt to try one, I’ve been repelled by what on my skin is a too-dark, too smoky note -- often smelling like wet burned firewood. So it was with some trepidation that I did a test spray of this scent while out shopping. It was love at first sniff, and the love persists all the way through the dry down on repeated applications.

    Black Oud opens with a burst of amber, soft, warm and mellow, with a slight smoky note supporting it, but in no way overwhelming it. It unfolds with a gentle spiciness (cardamom with ginger?) and soon develops an underlying soft leather note. For me it leaves the overall impression of inhaling a well-worn, high quality soft leather jacket whose owner wears both Hermes Equipage and Azarro Pour Homme.

    After a recent application, a friend, who knows scent well, first thought I’d applied Guerlain’s Heritage, then quickly switched to thinking it might be Mauboussin’s M Generation. He concluded it was better than either, yet a very intriguing blend of the best of each. The bottle and labeling is simple and elegant, and the price (I paid $45 for 100ml of EDP) is great. Well worth a try!

    06th December, 2014


    Replique by Long Lost Perfume

    Replique (1944) was Raphael’s first scent. In the course of 15 years he was to create just over a dozen (14 at my last count), most of which were sold only to European markets. Only his most popular, Replique and Plaisir (the latter a lighter version of the former) made it to the USA. The Raphael factory burned to the ground in 1959, taking with it almost all the formulas.

    Luckily, Replique and Plaisir (in pure parfum and edt versions) proliferate on Ebay, so they are easily enjoyed. [Note that the current re-formulation of Replique bears no resemblance to the original, but is a thoroughly enjoyable scent on its own (Rose de Mai and French wildflowers.]

    Replique is one of my five favorite scents of all time. It shares with Coty’s L’Aimant that indefinable “lift” and nuttiness that make these two rather unique in my perfume journey. Replique is a lovely nutty, complex, floral chypre. If you love L’Aimant, you’ll no doubt equally love Replique.

    Top notes: Bergamot, Clary Sage, Coriander, Cardamom, Lemon, Neroli, Orange

    Heart notes: Clove, Jasmine, Muguet, Orris, Rose, Tuberose, Ylang

    Base notes: Amber, Civet, Leather, Oakmoss, Musk, Patchouli, Vetiver, Vanilla

    One of the greatest and most original perfumes ever created.

    06th December, 2014


    Orange, Santal et Petitrain by L'Aromarine

    This is just what it says it is.

    A lovely mixture of orange, sandalwood and petitgrain, offering a pleasant alternative to the traditional eau de cologne formula.

    It is a perfect summer splash, drying down to a peppery orange, worn close to the skin and is perfectly balanced.

    Its striking bottle fits the palm and is a thing of beauty in and of itself.

    Highly recommended. Note: the company is now known as Outremer, though a search for the name itself will bring it up without either company name.

    26th November, 2014


    Knize Ten by Knize

    What do Maurice Chevalier, Charles Boyer, David Niven and Erroll Flynn have in common? Their signature scent was Knize Ten.

    This is quite simply the best leather scent ever created. My spouse has worn this as his winter scent for forty years (his summer being Hermes' Equipage). Together these two define the sophisticated, urbane, sensual European male.

    Isadora Duncan's Bugati with his sunglasses and silk scarf would have worn a light leather jacket that wafted Knize Ten.

    Co-created by Francois Coty, with the same indefinable "lift" present in his 1927 classic L'Aimant here also in Knize Ten. It sets both scents apart. Knize Ten's only rival as the best leather is Chanel's Cuir de Russie.

    A true classic, warm, only slightly spicy, crisp and dry - Knize Ten is "heaven scent."

    26th November, 2014


    Sublime by Jean Patou

    My first reaction to Sublime on my skin was a mix of lovely (warm vanilla amber) and nasty (a sharp, peppery, metallic under note).

    The negative note reminded me of my reaction to Oud, which I loathe, but this is not part of the make-up of this scent. The nearest possibility is the civet, which could equate to another Basenoter's reaction to cat urine in one of the other reviews on this page.

    The nasty base note takes it out of the running for a thumbs up for me. Even were it not present, the creamy vanilla amber sandalwood main notes are not distinctive or unique enough to warrant top praise. It's a scent that can go either way with the wearer.

    Top notes: Bergamot, Mandarin, Coriander
    Heart notes: Rose, Jasmine, Orris, Ylang, Carnation, Muguet
    Base notes: Sandalwood, Cedar, Styrax, Civet, Amber, Vanilla, Musk, Vetiver, Tonka

    Obviously, this is one that deserves a small sample test before commitment to buying.

    25th November, 2014


    Colors Uomo by Benetton

    A burst of lemon with big projection.

    The heart is a bitter cypress and patchouli with a slight menthol vibe. Rather sharp and metallic to my nose.

    A little bit goes a long way.

    It's an inexpensive citrus summer scent, so enjoy if you like it. I used to, but tired of it rather quickly. It's that bitter, sharp metallic note that lasts and lasts, which I find ultimately offensive.

    22nd November, 2014


    4711 Echt Kölnisch Wasser by 4711

    The original eau de cologne with its 220 year old formula of mixing orange, lemon, neroli lavender and rosemary with other botanicals to create a crisp, refreshing summer splash that lasts quite a long time, despite its being close to the skin for the wearer to enjoy.

    This is also available in sachet packets that I have kept refrigerated and refreshed myself with on a hot summer days. As the alcohol evaporates, the body cools down delightfully.

    Still manufactured according to its original formula and luckily one of the most affordable scents in the entire scent catalogue.

    Every cologne house and couture house has copied this and given it its own name. You still however cannot beat the original or its price.

    Highly recommended.

    21st November, 2014


    Équipage by Hermès

    One of the truly great scent creations for men, Equipage defies description. It tries to be everything all at once - spicy, fougere, floral, leather, chypre, tobacco, woods - and miraculously succeeds on all fronts. Whatever appeals to you, you will find it there.

    Created at this writing 45 years ago, its note profile is much more complex than the few ingredients listed above:

    Top notes: Rosewood, Bergamot, Orange, Clary Sage, Nutmeg, Cinnamon
    Heart notes: Carnation, Jasmine, Muguet, Labdanum, Pine, Birch Tar
    Base notes: Tonka, Vetiver, Patchouli, Oakmoss, Musk, Vanilla

    The new formulation, which seemingly had to dispense with the oak moss due to those pesky new regulations, has a much more warm leather support to its spiciness than the true vintage, which in an equally warm manner presents its complex carnation/pine bouquet. Both are lovely, just slightly different to my nose.

    The original is much more pungent in the warmth of summer than the newer version. Sillage for both is low in winter, clarion in summer.

    A must-experience for every man interested in scent.

    19th November, 2014


    Eau de Cologne by Geo F Trumper

    Almost every scent house has its version of the classic "Eau de Cologne." Trumper's take on this theme (lemon, bergamot, neroli, rosemary) differs in that its very dry, crisp base is evident from the very beginning, thus grounding this elusively light scent profile.

    Petitgrain, musk and rose are lightly blended to provide this pungent anchor for the sweet and heady lemon, neroli brightness. This is reminiscent of the grandfather of all colognes, Hungary Water.

    One of the very best of the Eau de Colognes available today and quite affordable.

    18th November, 2014

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