Reviews

Reviews by ortho123

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Aqua Velva New Musk by Williams

Sweet musk indeed but for me there's a defined coolness to the floral aspect of this aftershave/cologne that prevents it from veering towards a too insistent "warm" or heavy.
02nd October, 2012 (last edited: 25th November, 2014)

Kanøn Norwegian Wood by Kanon

This is definitely a close up scent with very good longevity...a kind of light at the ocean oriental lotion by the end of the day.

Sandalwood indeed...the nutmeg hit me early on...a sort of drier, restrained vanilla that makes this one a winner.
24th July, 2012 (last edited: 25th November, 2014)

Lomani by Lomani

Sure this is not the most original stuff out there, but the original Lomani? Two thumbs up!!!







10th July, 2011 (last edited: 25th November, 2014)
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Devin by Aramis

Good, but not great. Green, but sometimes grating and then soothing almost a lotion.

I find this scent to be oddly self-conscious: not bright enough to overcome a kind of intrusive sense of "reflection."

08th July, 2011 (last edited: 18th January, 2015)

Old Spice Smooth Blast by Procter & Gamble

This is NOT an over-the-top fruit/oriental but indeed a smooth blend that is natural, grounded, orange indeed, faintly tropical, a subdued watermelon? with a subtle wood (not a piercing cedar), minimally vanillac, musk base. Comparisons to Kenneth Cole's Reaction are fair but I much prefer this cheapo which has none of the KC Reaction "drop off" into a little murky effect...something of a Beyond Paradise reference here but more than just a Beyond Paradise knock off.

I could only find this stuff at Rite Aid which is a shame. It develops into an attractive close skin scent that is very discreet.
28th June, 2011 (last edited: 02nd January, 2015)

Allure Homme by Chanel

It's hard to believe so much "science" and "thinking" went into this ultimately uninspiring stuff.

Sophistication Lite: for that "fresh yet warm" from the laboratory feeling...




24th June, 2011 (last edited: 02nd January, 2015)

Clubman by Pinaud

The definitive barbershop scent? Sure. But overapply this stuff, you don't smell clean but creepy.

20th June, 2011 (last edited: 18th January, 2015)

Skin Bracer by Mennen

The proto-Brut-Polo-Azarro PH. Unapologetically masculine stuff.
16th June, 2011 (last edited: 02nd January, 2015)

Varon Dandy by Parera

I picked up a bottle of Varon Dandy (3.3 EDT) again after all these years and am glad I did. Very nice stuff. Sprayed lightly which for me is 2-4 sprays, the initial faux jasmine blast settles very soon into a soapy (for me less "powdery" than soapy) smooth blend. There is indeed a "subtle, Old Spice-like feel" as shamu states but more transparent here in effect than Old Spice (or Jovan Sex Appeal) and for me ultimately better for day to day, a scent that distinguishes itself as an edged fougere with enough dimensionality to satisfy, somehow soapy, subtlely musky, vanillac and am I imagining a faint citrus, wood/patchouli or maybe jasime after all?

Classic and better for me than a lot of the stuff the young (who scoff at Varon Dandy?) may wear. A scent for a gentleman but not a complete gentleman, with enough 'tude factor to make this a scent I'll be using more often again after all these years. Varon Dandy IMO transcends "associations," historical, political, economic, and at least for me, is a scent I'll be wearing. Inexpensive, but not short on character.

10th June, 2011 (last edited: 11th June, 2011)

Black by Kenneth Cole

Good Ol' Kenneth Coty Blah...

Really, I can see how this mix gives "permission" but I've already brushed my teeth and took a shower...and too much/extra Blah is a migraine.

There are actually better Coty fragrances...and better smelling deodorants.
13th December, 2009

Eau Sauvage by Christian Dior

There's no REFORMULATION that inspires this reaction in me quite like Eau Savage. "He was always great for all these years and now this...we never knew."

Yeah, the problem is in the middle, and efforts to reel in the topnotes crowd (and cheaping out and regging out?) have turned it into in the best case scenario: a summer scent?

Seriously I am literally so bored with retries, trying to get back to what it was and as we frequently say "trying to like this" but the trajectory of this masterpeice was ending up a summer scent...with an offputting middle.

Yeats might have written in his later years:

Once Refinement tumbled into bed;
Now the sheet is half-drawn:
Joy faked, death not...

Masterpiece summer scent?
28th November, 2009

Axe Essence by Axe / Lynx

There's enough intial "green" in this one to make more mature audiences think they might want to use it. Don't. This stuff is is like the form Polo might take after a nervous breakdown. Smelling the deo stick in no way prepares one for the can smell and built in BO...in various murky dimensions. A great scent for troubled jocks.
15th September, 2009

Axe Kilo by Axe / Lynx

IMO, Kilo is better than Phoenix. Why? I think for what it does it accomodates the "deo note" and tries to do less: unapologetically vanillac and spiced, not aiming for complexity but compliments.
15th September, 2009
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Axe Phoenix / Lynx Phoenix by Axe / Lynx

I revisted this one after a test run with Axe Fever. 2 years later, I do get the effort that went into Phoenix but it's somewhat lost on me. Strong, somewhat cloying, it builds around the now infamous Axe "can house note" with a kind of teetering effect between violet and leather. OK, but somewhat Calvin Klownish.
15th September, 2009

Axe Fever / Lynx Fever by Axe / Lynx

I gave this one the pits and chesty and have to say I really like this one. I was looking for a brighter everyday scent, and this one is great. Red dragon fruit: think more like tangerine (though it does start out "orange") and something like the edge of a faint ylang ylang...with my wife from SE Asia...this one works just fine.

A light scent that asserts itself, and I must say a definite shirt sniffer. My assocations with this one included everything from sport scent, candy gourmand, to something like like a fresh yet warm even OK for evening offering.

14th September, 2009

Zirh Ikon by Zirh

Complete turn around on this one for me that I can't explain. Hollow incense scent. No thanks.
20th August, 2009 (last edited: 26th May, 2011)

Zirh by Zirh

Coming from someone who wears stuff like Aramis and Quorun, I'm suprised I like this stuff so much. Frankly this is one of those scents like Bulgari PH which you can't smell but others do, and you smell it later yes, a subtle spice edged in brightness.
19th August, 2009 (last edited: 27th March, 2012)

Hugo by Hugo Boss

I worked with someone who said he wore this stuff. In the same conversation, he mentioned somewhat nostalgically but at the same time with an air of condescension that his now deceased father had only worn Aramis, as if feeling sorry for the man.

His father had better taste.

Synthetic fans rejoice! A fake apple mess.
18th August, 2009 (last edited: 11th June, 2011)

Ténéré by Paco Rabanne

A more hallucinigenic version of Aramis 900 with trips along the way into note varieties that rival Halston Z-14 (especially appearing more distinctly)...an oasis floral mirage in the middle...somehow amazingly grounded with traditional note references yet somehow unexpected...in the drydown. Too much Wowfactor to survive, apparently, and I can't say "They don't make them like that anymore" since they seldom ever did...to the extent that you get suprised in the ride by notes like leather and patchouli in the drydown and this gets seldom said...
10th August, 2009

Pino Silvestre by Silvestre

What does this scent in for me is the rush into the drydown away from any real semblance of brightness...and that's what stays and stays. Gone is the citrus.pine which yes I get and even what I imagine might be vanillic but it's amber and it's really really smoke, like "Incense is best" is it's real motto. I prefer Agua Brava....even after a 1 shot attempt...at breathing.
10th August, 2009

Krizia Uomo by Krizia

Another Italian scent attempting green in an 80's kind of way. Mostly an awkward opening more than offputting, clumsy more than harsh. The door cracks and in walks in a kind of dry pine soap, not bright as in Pino Silvestre, more like hazy. And so you're patient somewhat thinking the old world drydown won't be old, but it says in perfect English: "It is." Reaches for class, but ends up somewhere at the end of the film "Cinema Paradiso." Had this one in the after shave and never finished the bottle. The drydown seems to be reaching for a sweeter heart.
10th August, 2009

Bulgari Black by Bulgari

Not a muscle car scent but a Smartcar scent. Great for the immature to think they are mature and for a mature wearer who wants to think he's younger (but then he feels older, spare tire, subliminal image). Plays with the sense of the verbotten smoothly but relies on when-in-doubt vanilla. Proves vanilla really ain't that easy even after the fetish stuff. Gets a ticket for being tiresome, bad pun intended.
10th August, 2009

Halston 1-12 by Halston

Green, soapy, a little edgy.

An oddly elemental brew...sadly discontinued.
08th August, 2009 (last edited: 25th November, 2014)

Gucci by Gucci pour Homme by Gucci

Gucci looks at Chanel and some others and says, "I can do that." But let's not be too obvious or underobvious. Tries to be mature in a theoretical way and oddly succeeds, which makes this one an Aurahouse scent, a slightly smoky neutral after doing the now prerequiste slightly weird. Smokes menthol, switches to regular.

I actually come away from this liking something like Diesel Fuel For Life....at least there's some fun in it all...
08th August, 2009

Versace Man Eau Fraîche by Versace

This citrus with sheet of paper depth of wood and spice does indeed end up powder. Not deep, the edges on this slightly sharp opening can intially give your sinuses a paper cut. It was just a threat. Clean as in slightly sociopathic, feminine clean. Soon gone, except for deligent searches for powder and residue. May actually contain topical antibiotics...in minute quantities...should come with a freezing airconditioned room and bright lights...

08th August, 2009

Terre d'Hermès by Hermès

Dry orange. Dry dirt. What seems to inhabit this minimal landscape the most is hype and the fertile imagination of the wearer. Proof that less is not simply more but something like a mirage. Just keep saying "Jean Claude Ellena."
07th August, 2009

Wild Country by Avon

Bang for your buck barbershop maybe more modern now because it's sweeter and more defined. Hey, don't most fougeres smell a littte cheap? Go Wild, yet go lightly.

Avon's best scent for men after all these years, not counting any discontinueds...
07th August, 2009

Mesmerize for Men by Avon

Proof that hell begins on earth. A "presentational" approach to scent for those who like their notes in big print before they go into the blender: clumsy fruit, clumsy vanilla, and clumsy spice at the grave site. For those who believe queasy equals sexy.
07th August, 2009

Black Suede by Avon

Indeed a cheapo Kourosesque vibe just 30 minutes or so for the impatient. Overall softer and if lightly applied achieves a level of OK, but don't strive here for any mythic greatness with an increase in dosage. Too easily moves into sensual BO...to complete our theme.
07th August, 2009

Versace l'Homme by Versace

Don't fall for the intial aromatics hype about the basil unless you love harsh soaps and detergent... or that this is up there with Polo or Aramis (which is not really an 80's scent anyway). A lot of the talk is livin' for the drydown: fairly stark incense with some hints of brightness. Really walk this one around: the ride is really not that happy, IMO...though it starts with fake sun and lemons...and a few cookies...perfect for a "love" that will never last (3 days left in the vacation).

A scent not better because of the 90's...and I fail to see the "gentleman" in this stuff...and it leads me to believe that "typical 80's scent" is a green light to saying many crazy things.
06th August, 2009 (last edited: 18th January, 2015)