Eau de Shalimar is pretty much exactly what one might expect from its name and look...a lighter, more "modern" or "fresher"---i.e., less animalic, less dense---variant of the classic Shalimar. No, it's not the same; but then, it's not meant to be. Yes, it is true to the scent profile of the original, in a way that many flanker scents are not. While I infinitely prefer the incredible richness and polish of the original, I also enjoy using Eau de Shalimar as well. It's crisper and yes, lighter, but far from insipid, and on me it wears very true to the original formula, by which I mean that it's recognizably Shalimar...I don't at all get the pronounced lime note listed and reported by others, nor does the vanilla dominate. For people who find some scents too heavy in warm weather (not a problem for me) or who wish they could wear their Shali to the office but feel they need a lighter approach, this could serve very well. Likewise, for those who have tried the classic version and found it too heavy for their preferences or too "old", this could likewise likewise suit them better. Although I'm generally not a fan of companies tinkering with a classic just for novelty or dialing one back to appease a trend for the lighter side of perfume, I've found that all the incarnations of Shalimar have a place, and all are reasonably faithful to the original which is deservedly timeless.
On me, Joy is simply and warmly beautiful. I do have "sweetening" chemistry, so the civet which sends other wearers running to the bath/shower doesn't dominate the florals when I wear it. I get rose, of course, and jasmine, and yes, civet (delicately), among other things; but teasing apart the notes in Joy feels a bit like pulling the golden threads out of an Oriental brocade...I don't really want to analyze it, which seems almost boorish somehow. I just want to enjoy it, which is the same feeling I have for Shalimar. It is one of the richest perfumes I've worn, even more than some of the Amouage line. It's not an in-your-face kind of richness that chokes the air out of the room for those sensitive to perfume---even my father, who has asthma, was not bothered. It does, however, surround the person wearing it with a gentle cloud of loveliness. And, yes, it's quite sensual. This is one of those classic perfumes which is rightfully lauded as such; like Shalimar or other older greats, Joy is possessed of a complex, lasting gorgeousness that is timeless.
This was so not on my radar, despite the fact that I do like iris, because of reading so many dismissive reviews; thank heavens for the local discount shops! I ran across a 3.4 ounce bottle of Prada IdI at an irresistible price, scooped it up, promptly spritzed it on at home, and found a new perfume to keep in rotation. It is delicate but not insipid at all. Utterly intriguing and satisfying. I adore the touch of subtle incense in it, and the iris is entirely convincing. It simply smells gorgeous and is clearly composed of really nice quality ingredients. The cedar is genius in it, as it underlines and unites the whole composition without asserting itself distinctly. It's rich yet subtle...A skin scent that won't project much, but one that people close to you will notice, and one that is pleasingly uncommon in nature. I will sleep in this also... Downsides: expensive outside ye olde discount shoppe, needs fairly frequent reapplication on me at least. Upsides: absolutely bang-up top quality scent, subtle but distinctive, rather sexy in its own way, and perfectly unisex.
Once again, skin chemistry determines whether a perfume works or doesn't...I found Badgley Mischka to be a surprise hit for me. Although I do love flowers in nature, I'm rarely thrilled by the anonymous "white floral" notes of floral perfumes. There are exceptions, of course, but more often than not those are soliflores dedicated to replicating a single flower, often with a complex structure of many other notes for depth & interest. (DK Gold comes to mind.) But many floral offerings strike me as generic, sickly-sweet, lacking in depth, or unfortunately synthetic. And they tend to go even sweeter on me... Badgley Mischka went on both bright and lush, happily lacked any prominent artificiality, and went on to develop a warmth that underlined the exuberant florals with a hint of ripe fruit and a ghost of spice and/or resin (?), giving it some real backbone. It's a fairly subtle perfume on me---definitely not overblown or strong---and settles into skin scent within the first hour or less. In fact, opposite to what others have experienced, that is its main weakness for me: it lacks tenacity & projection. If it had more oomph, it would go on my favorites list for its quality and skillful blending.
Dune is really hard to pin down, category-wise. And that's fine---it makes it interesting. It's a gestalt scent: sweet notes, floral notes, "dry" notes, wood notes, amber notes, resin notes, a subtle fruity note, pale musk notes, aldehyde notes, all coming and going and intermixing to create an overall impression of something else entirely. Something very beautiful but not at all predictable. If I press my nose to my skin at the edges of where the scent was applied, I can find what I couldn't get at first sniff---the smell of the seaside, of warm, almost metallic sand and salt air moving over it. In another way, this scent reminds me of uncut Bosc pears on a metal plate in the sun. On me, there is no sense of flowers; I know they are in there, but after a few minutes on the skin I lose them. It's ok, though, as they've simply given their contribution to the evolving whole. I find this scent otherworldly, subtly sensual, intriguing. I like it because it is not simple, and because its intelligence is one that remembers perfume should smell good on the body, not one of odd edges or dissonances. I find that I re-spray it occasionally just to enjoy the evolution of it again. I like its contradictory yet harmonious quality of raw elegance or cerebral sensuality. They should have called it "Goblin-fruit" for its earthy yet fey nature...
Sillage on me is moderate, more noticeable in heat, and duration is a couple hours at most. I feel it would work nicely on a man as well.
"Floral-Oriental" my arse...It smells like marshmallows. Eventually they will come out with a "flanker" of it with the inevitable chocolate note, which they could name "S'mores". Really quite the nastiest thing I have smelt in a long time. Pure nausea.
I really fell in love with this, and was so disappointed when I heard that it has been discontinued! Reviews are so mixed on this scent, but I like complex and sensual perfumes, so I felt pretty confident that it would benefit from my chemistry, which tends to "sweeten" things. On me it is a rich, multi-faceted oriental that evolves over time. In the first 5 minutes, the animalic component is more noticeable, but it settles into velvety floral and spice and woods, with amber making its way into the mix after a bit. Utterly sensual, sexy but not at all "nasty"...and sadly not available much now. I was shocked by the abysmal rating from Luca Turin, whose taste I generally respect, but then, perfume is such an individual thing. It's definitely on my "5 stars" list.