Perfume Reviews

Reviews by freewheelingvagabond

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Total Reviews: 270

Carven pour Homme (original) by Carven

More often than not, if a scent is from the 90s (or early 2000s) and discontinued, chances are it was a gem. Carven Homme is very much a classy woody masculine with some spices. It's not the most original. It takes inspiration from Egoiste and Gucci Envy for Men, but it is unique enough to stand out in such distinguished company, and good enough to hold its own.

The brilliance of Carven Homme is in the incredibly smooth blending. The backbone is formed by a cedar-sandalwood accord, while cinnamon, lavender, vanilla and nutmeg add flesh and nuanced beauty to the composition. The blending is sheer ingenuity. The elments are so finely interwoven that they create a marvellous aura, yet they are masterfully accented so that rather than being blurry the effect is multi-layered.

The craftsmanship is also highlighted by the way Carven Homme wears on skin. It is rich, deep, with adequate sillage initially, but always gentlemanly. It becomes a bit muted after a couple of hours but has excellent longevity and can easily be worn for a day - an excellent 'eau de toilette' by construction. Carven Homme is refined, articulate, intelligent, and yet highly approachable and possessing that comforting sense of everydayness.

4/5
16th January, 2018

Incense Rosé by Tauer

I expected to at least like Incense Rose, since I love rose and incense. I find Incense Rose to be a pretty linear and well composed accord of rose, woods and incense. It's engaging and has a good presence; however, there's also something extremely sharp, shrill and abrasive in this that persists throughout. I could be wrong, but it smells like something that comes from the woods or the incense (rather than the rose). It's shrill, sharp attribute is also present, albeit to a much lesser degree, in Thirty-Three, a composition I enjoy. It's too amplified in Incense Rose, and overbears everything else. Additionally, Incense Rose smells not dissimilar to certain varieties of paan and paan masala from the subcontinent. I think Incense Rose has good sillage and duration, but I could have been distracted because of my experience.

Incense Rose is perhaps best suited for those looking for rose with sharp woods and incense. It's dark and hyper dry. More of a beast than a beauty, but then, beauty lies in the nose of the beerholder. Definitely sample first.

2/5
16th January, 2018

Égoïste / L'Égoïste by Chanel

Spicy woods.

Egoiste is all about light, subtle woods, primarily an accord of sandalwood tempered finely with spices and florals. Rose is there, an abstract presence that brightens up the composition, while cinnamon and coriander accentuate the sandalwood. There's a delightful touch of dry vanilla in the base.

Egoiste, for all its charm and beauty, is somewhat fleeting on my skin, and sits close to skin throughout its lifespan. Sillage is close, but lovely. I find the current version to have a vague musky aspect (perhaps ambrette seed), while another version I'm familiar with (from the early 2000s) is brighter, more sparkling and has a greater emphasis on the woods. The earlier version isn't richer or deeper, but does last a tad longer.

Egoiste, especially if one looks past potential issues with sillage and duration, is one of the most charming perfumes out on the market. It is also often a reference for sandalwood. However, one might find Tam Dao EdP, Samsara EdP (preferably an earlier bottle), or even Bois des Iles to be more useful if specifically seeking a sandalwood. Tam Dao and Bois des Iles are more focussed, while Samsara is more opulent.

It's notable that Carven Homme (1999) and Gucci's Envy for Men (1998) are quite related to Egoiste in terms of composition. While Envy for Men (with a terrific ginger note) is more exotic and oriental, Carven Homme successfully bridges the two styles and is mandatory sampling for anyone interested in Egoiste.

It's best to approach Egoiste (or any perfume, for that matter) with an open mind. Just don't expect a big perfume, but maybe you can expect something beautiful.

4/5
16th January, 2018
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McGraw by Tim McGraw

McGraw is a simple amber with some tonka in the dry down, and some boozy-whiskey notes in the opening - that's clever, since it also masks the faint alcoholic aspect. I detect a hint of lavender and nutmeg in the initial phase, before it becomes an amber skin scent.

McGraw isn't bad, but very basic. It's good if you can find it at less than $4 per ounce, maybe a nice option for high schoolers on a budget. I feel that this style is done better in Dirty English, which itself isn't terribly expensive either if one shops around.

2.5/5
13th January, 2018

Jules by Christian Dior

Note: Review is of the current version.

I have a fondness for this style of retro scents, but Jules isn't for me. From the very beginning I experience a persistent accord that's sharp and green, with a lot of galbanum, and a urinous aspect. I cannot get past this phase, and do not perceive any leather or anything to balance this accord. The dry down smells far more natural, rounded, mossy-leathery with vague similarities to Derby, and is perhaps what Jules should actually smell like. Unfortunately this reprieve is too little, too late. Sillage is appreciable initially, but close to skin in the final stages, and duration is about five to six hours.

I also find some similarities with Quorum, but Quorum appears better balanced and far more wearable and enjoyable.

2/5

12th January, 2018

Vermeil for Men by Vermeil

The mysterious Vermeil pour Homme by Jean Louis Vermeil.

Forget the avalanche of notes, this essentially smells of tobacco and mossy leather. It's totally old school, you can dress it up or down, but it would feel right at home after work in that smoky little beat down jazz club, with inexpensive drinks, unpretentious bartenders and music men who appreciate cool cats like Art Tatum and Ben Webster.

Not much complexity, but reasonably abstract, and its character is simple, honest and totally effective.

It will come to life as long as you're at the club, and linger on thereafter, and be sublime throughout, from the first notes till they fade out.



P.S. It's vaguely similar to Davidoff (1984), minus the glorious citrus-florals-greens of the Davidoff, and a stronger focus on the tobacco accord.

3.5/5
11th January, 2018

Neroli Portofino by Tom Ford

Much has been said and made of Neroli Portofino, perhaps one of the first fragrances in the modern era to explore the highly concentrated eau de cologne style. Perhaps this is a marvel of modern technology, possible only in this day and age.

Neroli Portofino is essentially a super concentrated version of the classic cologne (4711) structure. It has a bright, sparkling neroli opening that persists an appreciable amount of time on skin before subsiding to a subtle ambery base. It has appreciable sillage initially and rather good tenacity considering it's basically an amplified eau de cologne.

But there is a caveat.

Personally I'm not certain whether more concentration is always better in the case of eau de colognes. A traditional cologne aims to be refreshing, invigorating and provide brief joy and upliftment, meant to reapplied every hour or two. A super concentrated cologne, therefore, could essentially be self-defeating in its purpose.

If one is just looking for a long-lasting fresh fragrance, there are numerous more exciting options in forms of fresh florals, fresh vetivers and even aquatics.

Secondly, since Tom Ford did Neroli Portofino, everyone has tried to do their own Neroli Portofino aka concentrated cologne. For instance, Malle's Cologne Indelebile (very much alike to Neroli Portofino itself, except for having a clean white musk base) seems to have even more radiance and tenacity than Neroli Portofino.

Personally I prefer traditional eau de colognes (Nicolai, Mugler, Guerlain, Hermes....), fresh florals (Chanel Cristalle), fresh vetivers (Guerlain, Tom Ford, Lubin), aquatics (Bulgari Aqua, Sel Marin) or simply concentrated colognes that are more innovative (many from Atelier Cologne, and possibly others).

While the opening is very invigorating, it can come across as screechy on a bad day.

Note: While I believe this was the first 'concentrated eau de cologne' on the market, I shall be very grateful if anyone is able to point to another 'concentrated eau de cologne' released contemporaneously or earlier.



P.S. My recommendation? Try Mugler Cologne, which is one-tenth the price and ten times as fun. It doesn't last as long on skin, but lasts longer in memory.


2.5/5
11th January, 2018

Géranium pour Monsieur by Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle

Géranium pour Monsieur is an aromatic woody composition, first launched in 2000, and surely reformulated or retouched over the next seventeen years. I've been familiar with it since 2014, and wearing it has been an experience of joy and frustration. The first phase of Géranium pour Monsieur is herbal, dominated by an intense note of mint; heaven for mint lovers, hell for those who don't like it. This is my favourite part, and it works like a charm - especially after a shave. The mint is paired together with a geranium, which slowly blooms before maturing at about one to two hours. I discern a mild spice aspect, involving eugenol and traces of cinnamon. It is from this stage onwards that Géranium pour Monsieur quickly dies down on my skin to a base of nondescript white musks (but not strong, unlike the laundry musk of Cologne Indelebile) and woods, that one can barely register. A very promising aromatic disintegrating into a limp fresh-woody fragrance.

While Géranium pour Monsieur is one of the few mint compositions that avoid the olfactory cliché of toothpaste, it is eventually insubstantial and underwhelming. I feel that this is one of the Malle compositions (together with Vetiver Extraordinaire) that is in serious need of a renovation. In my experience (based on bottles I owned), it lasts longer in slightly cool and dry weather, rather than summers; in fact, this was once featured as a fall pick by Katie Puckrik. Given its current incarnation, I find Mugler's Fougere Furieuse to be a far more compelling alternative when looking for a modern fresh-aromatic with a prominent geranium. Another possibility is Equipage Geranium; while there's a plethora of mint fragrances on the market to choose from starting with Lush's Dirty, toothpaste or otherwise.

3/5
11th January, 2018

Blackpepper by Comme des Garçons

Spicy-woody.

One of the best openings of freshly cracked black peppercorns, photorealistic quality. This show endures for ten to twenty minutes. Thereafter a familiar plot takes over. Cedar, slightly sweet, slightly musky, slightly smoky, in the style of many other CdG fragrances.

The dry down is pleasant, comforting, almost like a light cashmere shawl that clings to one's skin. However, it's also somewhat boring and commonplace, and not as interesting as, for example, the development of 2 Man or the original.

This is for fans of black pepper, and CdG fans. This probably won't cut it for fans of stuff like Piper Nigrum. This is also substantially better than the average niche release in 2016.

Sillage is low-key but one keeps getting occasional wafts till the end. Duration is good compared to other CdG fragrances, and is about five to six hours.

3/5
29th December, 2017

Thirty-three by Ex Idolo

Rose and oud, with some spices. Nothing more, and nothing less - but the execution and quality is very good.

Thirty-Three starts off with a sharp, rich rose with a hint of pepper, quite dark and deep. The oud is in the background, before slowly developing. There's a steely / metallic note in the mid-phase, when the oud-rose accord is in full swing. The rose continues into the woody oud-driven dry down, but is more subdued. There's a bare hint of patchouly at this stage. On my skin, sillage is strong initially before dropping off, and longevity is excellent at over eight hours.

Thirty-Three is yet another entry in an overcrowded subcategory, that's almost become an olfactory cliché. However, it is among the best in its style. I perceive two potential drawbacks. At times the steely note makes the composition feel a little synthetic. Secondly, it's not very complex or abstract, and can appear boring if worn on several days in a row.

Otherwise, thumbs up.

3.5/5
29th December, 2017

Individuel by Montblanc

A fresh oriental.

Individuel is a cleverly composed (none other than Pierre Bourdon) fresh oriental, moving from candied lavender, to a heart of raspberry laced with cinnamon and juniper berries, to a dry-down of musky vanilla. A few years later Creed came out with Original Santal, which is woodier, and is sort of a high quality clone.

I can't personally warm up to Individuel because of three reasons: 1) It's sometimes a little synthetic, and even a bit crude, and is lacking in smoothness. 2) It's a bit too sweet in the dry down. 3) I feel this works best on young 20-something men, a phase of life I've left behind.

Else, I like the idea of Individuel.

3/5

28th December, 2017

psychédélique / Psychedelic by Jovoy

A big patchouli. The dry down has a bit of amber and vanilla. Initially it's rich with a boozy charm, but soon it's patchouli left, right and centre. Two points about the patchouli: 1. It has none of the earthy/dirty/hippie aspect. 2. Even though it's cleaned up, the patchouli is still huge, brooding and decadent - camphorous at times. Sillage and duration are both excellent.

I easily get bored of this style of 'straightforward' patchouli fragrances, but Psychedelique has a little twist in the beginning, and is also one of the best patchouli fragrances on the market.

3.5/5
28th December, 2017

Rochas Man by Rochas

A well-calibrated lavender-coffee-vanilla gourmand with good balance, and acceptable sillage and duration. It's less overpowering than New Haarlem, which is similar, and a bit more nuanced and subtle than Michael Jordan's Legend. As a gourmand, it's occasionally juvenile(as opposed to 'adult' gourmands à la Serge Lutens ... ). It's also not of the calibre of the gourmands from Mugler in the A* Men range, such as Pure Havane or Pure Coffee.

Nonetheless, Rochas Man is an affordable nice present for a high schooler starting out at college, and who's already finished a bottle of two of Legend. Easily unisex.

3/5
28th December, 2017
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Lyric Man by Amouage

An underwhelming stuffy rose fragrance, with woods, sweet musk and a touch of incense. A touch of lime at start is refreshing, and leads to the rose accord that's slightly soapy and a bit spicy. Thy dry down is smooth with the incense, rose and woods - but for some reason I find it claustrophobic.

This is not among my favourite rose fragrances by a long shot. I'm always uncomfortable in this, as it feels like wearing a shawl on a summer day.

Sillage and duration are good.

2.5/5
27th December, 2017

Roses Musk by Montale

This is yet another cynical rose perfume by Montale. It's simplistic, being a blend of high-pitched synthetic rose, musk and amber. It's not particularly sweet, but there's nonetheless a hint of cloying candy-like attribute now and then (similar to a dozen other Montales). This is in the same ballpark as Aoud Musk, Musk to Musk and several other Montales, and one wouldn't lose out on much if 90% of these were scrapped considering the redundancy.

Sillage and duration are both good, but eventually it's boring, crude, even smelling 'cheap' at times, and outstays its welcome.

2/5
27th December, 2017

Comme des Garçons 2 Man by Comme des Garçons

Cool, crisp and unusually fresh.

Comme des Garçons 2 Man is a woods and incense fragrance, with a touch of spices. The incense is waxy at the start; later on the woods take over, churchy cedar laced with dry vetiver. There's the allusion of smoke throughout. The spices are ethereal. The incense keeps drifting in and out.

2 Man is subtle and elusive, but on the odd days it reminds me of its staying power, which is so-so. It is light, but not exactly lightweight, airy, and a tad diffusive. While not quite my style, 2 Man remains one of the best woody incense perfumes on the market; and that opening is exquisite.

I like the freshness here. Unconventional, innovative, and sort of a new way of looking at things. There's something modern and urbane here, but not without intelligence.

3.5/5


26th December, 2017

Les Exceptions : Fougère Furieuse by Thierry Mugler

Good stuff.

Fougere Furieuse is not at all furious, but rather discreet and elegant. It's sort of a modern take on a fougere style, a 'nu-gere' without lavender. The aromatic aspect is subdued, with the emphasis on a clean, crisp accord of geranium and citrus. Mint is absent, unlike Geranium pour Monsieur. There's a subtle hint of orange in the mid-phase. The dry down is a touch of amber and tonka, with the barest hint of moss, with the perfect calibration of restrained sweetness. On me I find the sillage to be discreet but consistent with occasional wafts, and duration is about six hours.

Fougere Furieuse is nothing bold, outrageous, eccentric or perhaps innovative. However, it is exquisitely crafted and clearly among the best specimens of its genre. It's contemporary, substantive, fresh and completely under the radar. Maybe it's not shape shifting, but it's definitely mood lifting. Thumbs up!

3.5/5
23rd December, 2017 (last edited: 27th December, 2017)

Allure Homme by Chanel

I don't know how this was in the 90s and early 2000s, but I have tried it several times over the last 7 years, and my opinion hasn't changed. This is a remarkably unremarkable bland scent that is anything but alluring. I get citrus over a sweet base of woods and tonka, well-proportioned and abstract but thoroughly boring and without any identity. Additionally it's just too discreet on skin, with fleeting longevity.

If you want to wear a perfume that no one would ever remember, go for this. For a warm woody oriental with a touch of freshness, one can get Egoiste instead which is light years ahead in terms of aroma, depth and richness.

2.5/5
23rd December, 2017

Les Exceptions : Hot Cologne by Thierry Mugler

Hot Cologne is Mugler's new take on cologne with two novel aspects: a wonderful 'green' note of coffee assimilated within a cologne structure, and a peculiar temperament - something that imparts a 'hot' contrast to the traditionally refreshing notes of citrus at the beginning. This 'hot' aspect is akin to the heat after a steam bath; I find the citrus to be a blend of bergamot, lemon and orange - juicy but not overripe, and no sharp or screechy edges. The bergamot is somewhat dialed back in the blend, and doesn't have any bitter or metallic demeanour as it often does. The 'hot' aspect soon paves way to the coffee note that is 'fresh', 'green' and aromatic, and very similar to the one experienced in Dior's Vetiver. This accord of coffee and lingering citrus concludes the development of the composition.

Hot Cologne presents an innovative and interesting prospect in a niche overcrowded with redundant offerings. My personal reservations with Hot Cologne are threefold. I feel that the integration of coffee within the cologne structure would have benefitted from a bolder exploration. Though, would it still have been a 'cologne' then? Is it, now? Secondly, Hot Cologne is rather muted on my skin and has fleeting longevity, which is uncharacteristic of any edp, and also of the Mugler Les Exceptions line. That leads it to the third point - I'm skeptical of Hot Cologne being of good value given the alternatives. Here I should add a caveat: I have only tried Hot Cologne in cooler weather. Perhaps Hot Cologne truly comes to life in hot weather?

3/5
17th December, 2017

New York for Gentlemen by Brooks Brothers

New York for Gentlemen is an aromatic citrus fragrance, firmly conceived in the classical style. The initial opening is mostly a burst of bergamot; thereafter it moves towards a green aromatic heart and base with mostly vetiver and light mossy woods. It bears a modern touch by significantly toning down the woods, and without having any rough edge. While it is quite generic among traditional classic citrus fragrances, it is also fairly well executed. Reminiscent of Eau Sauvage and sometimes Grey Vetiver, it is smooth, rounded and exhibits rather discreet sillage and average tenacity on skin.

New York for Gentlemen would perhaps not top any list of recommendations, but it is certainly commendable, and presents a good proposition for anyone after a classic aromatic citrus; it is worth seeking out if one is particularly into the style. New York or not, it is certainly gentlemanly.

I am not sure why Brooks Brothers pulled New York for Gentlemen out of the market - I believe it has been discontinued. It surely has become harder to find, and prices appear to have increased threefold. One can approach the venerable Eau Sauvage for a superior replacement, or something from the Acqua di Parma line if potency is a concern.


3/5
11th December, 2017

Tom Ford Extreme by Tom Ford

This is a fruity leather fragrance, but the leather is in the background, while notes of chocolate and truffle together with some woods create a scent that brings to mind modern gentlemen's clubs, or at least scents that people wear therein. The leading fruit note is an inviting dark plum, the sort one finds in rich plum cakes. While all of this is enthusing and well done, the problem is that the fragrance soon collapses on skin after two hours. The remnant is a standard woody amber that's very commonplace, and only half a notch above in quality compared to average mall scents. A hint of the earlier extravaganza does linger on, but it's too little and more of a consolation than an aftertaste.

Shows a lot of promise, but eventually underwhelming and disappointing. I also find Tom Ford Extreme to have close sillage that becomes more faint over the hours, and duration is about five hours which is sub par for its style. Among similar fragrances I find Plum Japonais a more interesting proposition since, unlike Tom Ford Extreme, Plum Japonais holds on well to its initial interesting accord of plum with woods and amber.

2.5/5
30th November, 2017

Mugler Cologne by Thierry Mugler

Mugler Cologne is nearly the perfect cologne for me. It's got neroli, but is not overloaded with the stuff. It's a classic recipe, but is very modern and has none of the stiff conservatism found in some other traditional colognes. It has bergamot and petitgrain, but everything is blended together to arrive at an accord that is pure pleasure - reminiscent of soap, and is fresh, refined and incredibly clean. Mugler Cologne does have a base, which is a very careful dose of clean, fresh white musk. It has just enough of the musk so that it lasts much more than traditional colognes, but never becomes grating. The projection is calibrated immaculately so it sits close to skin, but emanates a lovely waft every now and then. The sillage is just how it should be. Duration is more than adequate at around five to six hours.

Mugler Cologne is living proof that there can be a light fresh perfume that is distinctive, beautifully androgynous and bottleful of fun. Hats off to Mugler and Alberto Morillas for this. Bravo!

4.5/5
27th November, 2017 (last edited: 12th December, 2017)

Labdanum 18 / Ciste 18 by Le Labo

Hardly anything to do with labdanum.

Basically a musk with woody-sweet touches, vanilla and the minutest traces of some animalic notes. At times it smells like baby powder to me.

In fact, I find this to be almost identical what would be a 40% concentration of Musc Ravageur.

Also, extremely weak. Impossible to believe that it's an oriental.

Next please.

2/5
27th November, 2017

Bigarade Concentrée by Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle

An orange eau de cologne formula with increased concentration. There's a slight earthy edge to it, that actually makes the composition rugged and interesting. It is very fresh, uplifting, and calms down to dry woods in a couple of hours.

Bigarade Concentree is effectively a more concentrated version of Malle's Cologne Bigarade, and is relatively better value, especially if one is after something with more than one hour of duration. However, it's also in the same family as some other colognes (Eau d'Orange Verte, Concentre d'Orange Verte) and perfumes (Declaration, Declaration Essence). The former two colognes can sometimes have a pissy aspect which Bigarade Concentree doesn't have. The latter two are more opulent studies on orange-cumin-woods, and I find those more engaging.

Among other concentrated colognes, Bigarade Concentree smells much more natural than Cologne Indelebile and Neroli Portofino, but lasts much less than either of those two.

Nice, but what's the point of dropping $$$ on a cologne?

3/5
27th November, 2017

Miyako by Auphorie

I experience Miyako in two phases. First the fruits, oily notes of peach and apricot that I am indifferent to. The second half is a leathery osmanthus with tea, a beautiful affair. But it's rather quiet on my skin around this time, and once it develops further and arrives at a dry down of woods and musk, I have to dig my nose into my arms to perceive it. While I understand it's natural and oil based, I would love it to have had a lot more sillage. Otherwise it's charming, and longevity on fabric is tremendous. Lovely, but sadly not functional enough for this user.

3/5
27th November, 2017

Café Tuberosa by Atelier Cologne

Café Tuberosa is a white floral with a touch of vanilla and a slight oriental twist. Initially it's bright, and that is also when the coffee notes come to the fore. The coffee is lush and smells like a coffeeshop, rather than earthy beans. The other half of the accord is the tuberose, which is uncharacteristically meek, lost amidst the coffee, the vanilla and a hint of rose. In fact, I would definitely not presume this to be a tuberose fragrance. After a couple of hours it seems that we have left the coffee shop. At this stage what's left on my skin is a not so interesting blend of white florals, coffee and vanilla. Sillage is moderate, and duration is reasonable at over five hours on my skin.

I find Café Tuberosa to be stylistically similar to Intense Cafe, Cafe Rose and Noir de Noir, though it is brighter and more summery than those. It can be thought of as the coffee and white floral counterpart of Intense Cafe, but it is more elegant and definitely not as rich. I am not moved by Café Tuberosa because of a couple of points: I'm not sure this 'coffee and tuberose' pairing works as effortlessly as 'coffee and rose'; secondly, it seems a bit too safe and bland, especially after the first two hours.

Is 2017 the year of the tuberose? It might seem so, with Gabrielle, Bloom, Twilly and Café Tuberosa. While Gabrielle is most underwhelming, Café Tuberosa does offer something a little different and is definitely worth a spray or five.

3/5
15th November, 2017

Vetiver Royal Bourbon (new) by Oriza L. Legrand

A very nice, well done, traditional vetiver. I detect a subtle touch of mint at the start. There is little progression, but as it develops one can get hints of cade and tobacco. It is somewhat smoky, and slightly medicinal - which I like. Interestingly, it has a warmth but is surprisingly refreshing at the same time. It smells very natural, even a bit herbal at times - like something one would find at an essential oil store. I get consistent low-key projection, and duration is excellent for a vetiver fragrance at over seven hours.

At times one wonders whether Vetiver Royal Bourbon 'smells good'. It does, even with the occasional bitter-mothball vibe about it. It is one of those perfumes that's out of place in a world of instant gratification, but it does retain my interest after several wears. It's also not as raw and/or pungent like some other vetivers, notably Villoresi and Route du Vetiver. On some days I even prefer it to the Lubin.

3.5/5
12th November, 2017

Bergamotto Marino by Gianfranco Ferré

A simple, fresh cologne with noticeable neroli and citrus notes. The initial burst is not too bright but more refreshing, with some subtle florals, and on a bed of light musks and woods. The base is light, and therefore it never outstays its welcome. Any marine, aquatic or salty element is completely lost on my skin. The good feature of this perfume is that everything is dealt with a light hand, and the overall balance is where it should be. It wears close to skin on me, and duration is around four hours. All in all a nice summery cologne, very unisex, but not as sparkling/uplifting as Guerlains and Nicolai, and not as interesting as some of the Hermes colognes.

3/5
12th November, 2017

Acqua Viva by Profumum

Photorealistic lemon, followed by a lot more lemon, followed by woods. The lemon is rich, zesty, two-dimensional and very tenacious. It does have a green 'feel', maybe simply because of the lemon and woods? It does smell high quality throughout, despite being a little synthetic in the base.

This maybe for you if you are looking for a concentrated citrus. It's not for me because I find this style of fragrances to be boring after a while, and it's also rather overpriced given what it is. It does have some similarities with Eau d'Hadrien and also Hadrien Absolu. Clearly among the best in its style, but not something for me.

3/5
07th November, 2017

Déclaration d'Un Soir by Cartier

Pepper, rose, woods.

The pepper provides a simultaneous warmth and coolness to the sheer woods, and the rose is a subtle but alluring distraction. The peppery woods provide the introduction before the rose brings a lateral twist to the composition, and then fades out, with a cloud of woods hangs about skin, laced with green cardamom. The cardamom is explored throughout the development, showcasing its green, earthy and at times an abstract nutty quality.

Declaration d'Un Soir isn't a study on rose, or woods, or anything really. Rather, it's functional but interesting, and an interesting androgynous floral scent. I like it most in warm and cool weathers, in evenings, and with a generous application. While it could have been more bodacious, it effortlessly bridges the modern and the romantic, and provides adequate satisfaction.

No relation to the original Declaration, well, except for the woods.

3.5/5
04th November, 2017