Perfume Reviews

Reviews by rbaker

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Total Reviews: 2748
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Fuzzy Balls by Demeter Fragrance Library

A strange plasticky opening followed by a citrus note, mainly a lemon impression.

In the drydown the lemon goes, and the plastic remains until the end. I do not get a dedicated base here.

The sillage is moderate, the projection adequate and the longevity five hours on my skin.

A bit summery, generic - no, make that ultra-generic,
and synthetic - no, make that mega-synthetic. Good for chemical exercises in the lab. 2/5
01st June, 2020
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Frankincense by Demeter Fragrance Library

This is an incense creation 100%. So the incense makes or breaks it. It does neither of the two.

The frankincense is there form the start. It is light, minimally spicy, and more on the bright side.

The development - well, there is not much of it; this is a very linear composition. Not without a bit of smoothness, but somehow it lacks life.

I get poor sillage, adequate projection and five hours of longevity on my skin.

One of the mildest and inoffensive frankincense scents I known. Maybe for warmer autumn days for someone who dislikes the genre and wants a very light and weak version. Frankincense lite so to speak. Overall 2.5/5
31st May, 2020
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United Kingdom

Frangipani by Demeter Fragrance Library

A rich frangipani impression is there right from the start: sweet, and with hints of a gardenia-like twist, with whiffs of a citrus notion adding brightness.

The drydown adds spice to it; not strong, but not a wallflower either. Fruity undertones are noticeable; thing overripe bananas or plums.

The base developed a gingery layer that adds depth to the mix; and the gentle spices are also evindent right until the end.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection and six hours of longevity on my skin.

Pleasantly done, this scent for cooler spring days is a bit too generic at times, but not at all bad as a frangipani mix. 2.75/5.
29th May, 2020
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Elvira's Black Roses by Demeter Fragrance Library

A rose blossom appears briefly in the opening blast - am quite a bright Bulgarian rose it is - but soon I get rose leaves and the stems. Hints of dried peaches, a mild Darjeeling tea, and davana develop soon after. I do not get any booziness here.

The drydown adds adds fruity notes, with pleasant redcurrants vying with whiffs of white fruits vying for my attention. The rose has morphed into aromas of wet rose leaves, with some rosewood in the background.

The base adds and ambery patchouli, which is darker, quite smooth and blending in seamlessly. Still, the rose stems prevail until the end, with a gentle sweetness added to the mix in the coda of the development of this olfactory creation.

I got moderate sillage, very good projection, and a respectable nine hours of longevity on my skin.

This rose-centred spring scent is unusual for a Demeter in its allowing several components to develop. Whilst not exactly a complex cocktail, there are some creative touches to it, and the rose is unexpectedly not too synthetic or generic. Still, it is not showing much depth or structure, but this One is close to a positive score. 2.75/5.
26th May, 2020
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Orchid Collection : Cattleya by Demeter Fragrance Library

The floral opening is somewhat centered around an orchid impression, but the sweetness is somewhat a bit too artificial; a bit candy-like nearly. There are touches of orange and lemon present too, but very weakly only.

The drydown adds a soft patchouli, which is quite bright and smooth; no harshness and any sort of edge here.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection and a very good nine hours on my skin.

This spring scent represents a nice try to recreate this orchid, but is does not do much justice to this divine flower; it is too overlaid by generic notes and by synthetics for that. Still, agreeable it is in a pleasant sort of way. 2.75/5.
25th May, 2020
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Cranberry by Demeter Fragrance Library

Yup, cranberries is what I get. Looking beyond the fog of the chemical opening blast, the subsequent cranberry note is not exactly bowling me over in adulation, but it constitutes a respectable cranberry impression. Whiffs of a slightly citric undertone are also present at time.

The drydown adds terseness and a bitter undertone to it, and only in the base I discover more of a sweet side to it.

I get moderate sillage, adequate projection and nine hours of longevity.

This spring scent is a about the cranberry. Clearly not really full of natural fruitiness, it is a valid, albeit very linear, reproduction. Where’s the roast? 2.75/5.
24th May, 2020
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Crayon by Demeter Fragrance Library

The initial blast of a bunch of unpleasant chemicals is soon replaced by a fruitiness that settles in gradually. I get mandarines, honeydew melons, and overripe pears here.

The drydown looses sone of the sweetness, and a waxy undertone develops that reminds me of the smell of crayons now. The latter merges with the fruity notes over time.

I get moderate sillage, adequate projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

A spring scent that has an interesting concept behind, but its realisation and implementation is not really convincing. 2.5/5.
23rd May, 2020
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Cardamom by Demeter Fragrance Library

Initially this this a crisp and spicy cardamom. Not harsh, very chemical in the opening blast, but settling down after a while to regroup into a pleasant cardamom spiciness.

The second phase is characterised by the arrival of a sweet impression, which is predominantly identifiable as a cinnamon note. Not particularly rich or creamy, but nice. Whiffs of caramel also come and go.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection and nine hours of longevity on my skin.

An agreeable cardamom creation for autumn days, which is a bit too synthetic to entice, and without any other creative twists to impress. The performance is very good. 2.75/5.

22nd May, 2020
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Caravan NYC by Demeter Fragrance Library

A fruity opening that is peachy and sweet - not cloying so bit sweet it is, and it remains so until the end.

The drydown brings on strawberry leaves, but I get a good whiff of the actual strawberries too. No whipped cream unfortunately.

The base adds caramelised sugar, but is is now like a nonspecific sugariness on me.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection and a respectable nine hours of longevity on my skin.

A sweet spring scent. Not too bad, but very, very generic and laboratory-chemical in an uncreative way. This one does not do Manhattan any justice. A caravan? Maybe it is best to let it move on.....

2.5/5
21st May, 2020
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Christmas Bouquet by Demeter Fragrance Library

The opening is a mix of a pleasant carnation and some cinnamon-elated gentle sweet spiciness in the background. The latter gains prominence after the initial moments, and the carnation, soon left behind, is too weak to make a mark.

The drydown adds a gingerbread impression, with notions of coconut also present at times; and this remains the case until the end. There were green notes underlying this mix that wafted in and out over time.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

An agreeable attempt of a Christmas scent that is marred by the poor quality of the carnation. Nice in a mediocre way. 2.5/5.
20th May, 2020
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Cherry Blossom by Demeter Fragrance Library

The opening blast incurs the emanation if a cherry blossom indeed. Neither early not late cherry blossom, it is about in the middle.

The drydown adds some actual cherry fruit to it, with the blossoms retreating gracefully. This lasts until the end, and I do not get a separate base here.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection and an excellent eleven hours of longevity on my skin.

Cherry blossom indeed and nice in spring, but very generic and synthetic. 2.75/5.
19th May, 2020
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Candy Cane Truffle by Demeter Fragrance Library

This indeed gives a nice rendition of the sweets that its name refers to; more so of the dark chocolate version.

A bit of mint is present in the drydown. Burnt remains in the background. Hints of caramel are present towards the end, burnt the tradition is gradual; I don’t get a separate base as such.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and a very respectable ten hours of longevity on my skin.

A good gourmand winter scent, a bit simple, linear and blunt but depicting quite well what the name promises it would. 2.75/5.
18th May, 2020
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Matar Al Hub by Al Haramain

The opening of bergamot and lots of aldehydes makes for a bright start, whilst geranium and whiffs of carnation add a floral side. A slightly sharp undercurrent is due to a saffron note that is quite spicy.

In the drydown an ylang-ylang develops that becomes a centerpiece in this olfactory artifice. Whilst a light and somewhat nonspecific rose vies with the geranium to maintain a floral presence, aided by darker florals like a minimally powdery jasmine as well as a shadowy violet, harsher ingredients begin to move into the foreground: from a orris to wood notes, with oud (labeled Cambodian), cedar (less so) and sandalwood (minimally on me). At times it can be quite pungent. Still, it remains a bright affair overall.

Whilst the base maintains the wood line - guaiac is added very sparingly - as well as the fresh and crisp character for the while - fueled by mossy vibes - towards the end things mellow a bit. Vanilla, an ambery tonka, and white musks arise, but in spite of all these being added in, I never get much sweetness in this mix.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection, and a splendid twelve hours of longevity on my skin.

This is a complex creation for cooler spring or warmer autumn days, that does not let all its components develop equally, but leads to interesting developments at times. The ingredients are of good quality, and the whole is crafted well. 3.5/5
17th May, 2020
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Orange Rim Cleaner by Demeter Fragrance Library

There is orange in the opening blast all right, a bright, slightly metallic and crisp orange.

The drydown adds features of a gasoline scent, with whiffs of mechanical also present at times.

There is no real development towards a base here, but the mix is weaning in intensity very gradually until the end.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

An agreeable scent that is deliberately synthetic and artificial to the core. Whilst this is not exactly impressive parfumerie, the theme announced in the title does not raise the expectation of natural notes anyway. Overall 2.75/5, but for petrolheads it is 3/5. For the visit of your garage in summer.

15th May, 2020
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Attar Sheikh Al Arab by Al Haramain

The opening is quite unique in its mixture of orange, citrus, unripe apples and a bright, crisp and slightly spicy touch.

In the drydown I get a herbal undertone, with subtle white floral hints - whiffs of muguet mainly - but no sweetness. A restrained oud-like spiciness with rose-like undertones adds further depth.

The base continues the themes of a light and bright crispy spiciness, with hints of a light saffron note added to it.

I get moderate sillage, excellent projection a d a truly impressive longevity of twelve hours on my skin.

This spring scent is an interesting creation that expresses original features and is composed of high-quality ingredients. The development is more subtle than the components might suggest, but the result is rather convincing, although it lacks texture at times. The performance is outright splendid. 3.5/5
14th May, 2020
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First Instinct by Abercrombie & Fitch

The opening is not that boozy, but I get a bit of the Gin & Tonic though. It tries to emulate a bit of a London Dry Gin, but the juniper is not convincing. Other the other hand, a bit of Tonic is there in the background. A fruity accord develops a bit later on, with a faint melon in it.

The drydown develops a transient citrus Accor with touches of lemon, as well as a dry and slightly powdery violet note, together with a light and bright notions of white peppers - Szechuan?

The base is characterised by heilte musk that are more intense than white musks often are these days. A touch of side suede is present,

I get moderate sillage, excellent projection and nine hours of longevity on my skin.

A nice and bright scent for spring, this creation is hampered by being a tad too generic and a bit anaemic at times. 2.75/5
13th May, 2020
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Musk Al Ghazal by Al Haramain

A fruity opening greets me, with raspberries and whiffs of redcurrant. Bright and positive.

The drydown reveals a rose, which soon is joined by a musky and slightly screechy leathery note; with mix mimics and oud-like impression plat times. A light geranium and a somewhat more prevalent jasmine keep up the floral side, as well as providing a sweet undertone.

The base is a continuation of the dark musk and leatheriness, which peters out gradually until the end.

I got moderate sillage, excellent projection and and very good nine hours of longevity on my skin.

An agreeable autumnal floral - musky creation with good performance. At times a bit generic though at times, but executed well most of time. A - narrow - foray into a positive score. 3/5.
10th May, 2020
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Burn by Brimstone for Him by Demeter Fragrance Library

A fruity peach opens up the initial blast - a bright sort of fruitiness. In the drydown I get a gently peppery accord - not very Japapeño though on the whole, but is provides some counterbalance to the fruitiness.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

Nice idea, but very generic, very synthetic and, alas, very mediocre. 2.5/5.
09th May, 2020
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Tcharas by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

The top notes reveal a patchouli blast of some distinction: quite bright, crisp, like an restrainedly mild castoreum with a floral undertone, mainly a rose.

The drydown ads a slightly leathery note, but the most important development is that of an unusual incense. The latter is brighter than expected, with occasional balsamic undertones but not at all fitting the stereotype of the rich and dark Oriental balsam; there is a modern and lean feel to this note. There a touches of the civet evident at times.

The base adds a bright resinous touch to it, with whiffs of ginger and a mossy vibe also present at times.

I get moderate sillage, excellent projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

This is an interesting spring scent for cooler days. The combination of the disparate comments works exceedingly well, and some stretches of the development of this creation result in creative and original impressions. The quality of the ingredients is high and the blending is done very well; the performance is not stellar though. 3.5/5
08th May, 2020
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Cologne de l'Empereur by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

The opening does the name justice, with its fresh, bright and crisp acidic hesperidic, evoking memories of some of the components of Penhaligon’s Blenheim Bouquet. The are hints of lemon present a bit later too.

The drydown is more in the sweetish side, with a pleasant rose impression combining with lavender. Now the main player on my skin is a green jasmine.

The base adds a woodsy note that remains quite nonspecific.

I get moderate sillage, good projection initially and a bit less than three hours of longevity on my skin.

A nice summer Cologne composed of good-quality ingredients. The opening does it all, the rest is not particularly exciting. Its flaw, the lack of longitudinal stamina, is part of the nature of this category of scents. 3.25/5.
07th May, 2020
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Fiore di Lago / Lake Flower by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

A quite original opening with hesperidic, citrus and and crisp and slightly spicy undertone courtesy of helichrysium. There is an overarching green note with bergamot in it, which extends into the later development.

The drydown adds Thai lemon grass accords mixed with acidic components. Whiffs of white florals come and go, without any of them being clearly identifiable on me;m. Later green stems and leaves of roses appear, combined with a rather dry and skin ylang-ylang; I get neither creaminess nor a lot of sweetness in the latter.

The base is grounded in a slightly woody background, with a balsamic note in the foreground. Additionally, ozonic and aquatic moments (the name!) brighten it up.

I get moderate sillage, very good projection, and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

A very nice and bright-ish scent for cooler summer days, with an original concept, quite a creative execution, and ingredients of very good quality, but a few less intensive moments. 3.5/5.
06th May, 2020
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Orientalissimo / Attar Maulana by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

The opening is a floral mix, but it is counterbalanced almost immediately by a slightly harsh castoreum; hence the floral sweetness is always kept in check. A lovely green impression of rose stems and leaves adds a green undertone, and it is aligned with a discreet tuberose that gains prominence with time.

The drydown sees the rise of a very pretty jasmine, which is rich and smooth; very nice.

The base is laid out around an ambery styrax, with a nonspecific woodsiness in the background. Whiffs of a subtle oriental incense join the styrax at times; maybe this is the connection to the Maulana? I also get hints of the castoreum still; there has been the claim that the pheromone extract of the wild beaver is included in this blend too.

I get moderate sillage, excellent projection and eight hours of longevity on my skin.

A very pleasant scent for cool spring days, with ingredients of a good quality, and with a nice original touch in what appears to be a fairly standard concept otherwise. Overall 3.25/5.
05th May, 2020
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Bambini by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

Yes - a nice citrus opening with a strong and tart grapefruit component, but good lashings of tangerine, mandarin, orange, and lemon.

In the drydown I get a faint neroli and touches Irma white florals, like the orange blossom. I do not get a separate base.

The sillage is poor, the projection good and the longevity is three hours on my skin.

A lovely citrus that is quite natural. That is all, really. Lots of reapplication is needed. Not refreshing, not a true Cologne, but the idea is not dissimilar. Good quality indeed.

Worth a positive score? Well, just. By the skin of its teeth. 3/5
04th May, 2020
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Rose des Bois by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

The opening has wood in it, and a rose indeed. Not so much rose blossoms, but a pleasant green impression of the rose stems and also, to a lesser extent, the leaves. Whiffs a berry-fruitiness make a transient appearance.

The drydown adds a spiciness, which is makes based on a notion of black pepper; I also get sone nutmeg behind the spiciness.

With time a restrained sweetness is developing, mainly from a gentle tonka. The wood become ms a bit more differentiated the more this mix develops, and apart from the rosewood I get whiffs of a dusty mahogany.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

As another rose and wood creation, this scent for warmer autumn days is a far cry from the benchmarks in the genre, including the great Egoïste by Chanel in its original incarnation. This AbdesSalaam Attar is touch to anaemic too convince, although it is quite an agreeable composition; is just lacks intensity, vividness and texture. Overall 2.75/5.
03rd May, 2020
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Orchid Collection : Calypso by Demeter Fragrance Library

The opening is rather chemical for a brief moment, and then afloral aroma arises. Pleasant.

Later on a touch of an orchid-like impression is evident, quite bright. A restrained vanilla is developing slowly, a light and not really a sweet version of it.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and a good nine hours of longevity on my skin.

This spring scent is rather bland, and the little olfactory emanations of the Calypso orchid are too generic and synthetic to entice. Thin, but with decent performance. Overall 2/5.
02nd May, 2020
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Caipirinha by Demeter Fragrance Library

A slight citrus starts the opening blast, but soon it sweetens a lot. Sugar water.

The sugar carries on into the drydown, and there is some citrus lurking in the background. What I don’t get is a convincing lime, and not even a decent lemon.

Another thing that’s missing is anything that could be taken as a recognisable Cachaça.

Sugar water is it then mainly. Mmmmh.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

A summer sugar water with.... 1.75/5.
01st May, 2020
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Orchid Collection : Aphrodite's Slipper by Demeter Fragrance Library

The opening blast is an unpleasant nigh-vegetal raw blow, but soon I get the floral side of it. An orchid impression arises, quite general in character, with a green undertone.

The drydown adds touches of spiciness due to a note of cloves, but there is a cinnamon sweetness to it too.

The base sees the orchid again a bit; it has been in retreat for a while.

I get moderate sillage, adequate projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

This creation for colder spring days is integration in its concept, but its implementation is compromised by the generic and ultra laboratory-chemical character of its ingredients. 2.5/5.
30th April, 2020
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Bubble Gum by Demeter Fragrance Library

After a brief and unpleasant explosion of raw cabbage, I get the Bubble Gum rather quickly. It’s Double Bubble on me.

In the drydown there are hints of vanilla, whiffs of garlic. There is also a groundswell of a chemical nature that I get towards the end.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and five hours of longevity on my skin.

Yes, there is a lot of mint gum in this summery scent, but the petrochemical pollution mars that experience. 2.5/5
29th April, 2020
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Blood Lime by Demeter Fragrance Library

This is a rendering of a blood orange that is well recognisable. Almost immediately mixed with a citrus component, which turns out to be more lemon than lime on me. Bright citrus.

There is little development on me; it gradually weakens until expiring quietly.

I got soft sillage, adequate projection and over four hours of longevity on my skin.

A summers citrus creation, not bad as such. The motor drawbacks are the ultra-synthetic nature and a certain thinness from beginning to end. Not all synthetic citrus fragrances are that anaemic; Hermès’ Eau d’Orange Verte comes to mind as an example. This Demeter is not transcending basic petrochemical levels. 2.5/5.
28th April, 2020
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Giant Sequoia by Demeter Fragrance Library

A nice woodsy impression, with some character of the sequoia, occasional flares of a pine impression and whiffs of cypresses. Quite bright nonetheless.

Later on white musks appear. Quite plain with a sweetish touch.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and seven hours of longevity on my skin.

Pleasant as a scent for cooler spring of warmer autumn days. Some agreeable touches but many generic moments; and the white musks are unimpressive. 2.5/5.
27th April, 2020