Perfume Reviews

Reviews by newgabe

Total Reviews: 24

Insolence Eau de Toilette by Guerlain

Ravetastic, I love your review! As for Insolence, it's OK I suppose, nothing interesting (oh, is that supposed to be violets?!) but why on earth is it called Insolence? Insolence should have attitude, like a sharp urban version of Bandit perhaps or a citrus Bulgari Black. This is just a mild thickish sweetish unchallenging thing that sits in the corner till it fades away.
07th April, 2009

Allure Sensuelle by Chanel

Somehow I've resisted scrubbing this, and its gradually gone past the stomach turning 'nasty patchouli and some Prada-like weird chemical thing' to an (at least mercifully faint) fridge deodorant vanilla that all modern perfumes seem to default to. I couldn't imagine the circumstances in which I'd want to smell like any stage of this perfume.
01st April, 2009

Allure Eau de Toilette by Chanel

As I had just tried one of those modern 'straight from insecticide to bubblegum' messes, Allure at least smelled like a real perfume. A medium floral dried down over an hour or so to an acceptable, sharpish powdery scent softened by vanilla.Not impossible to wear, as long as you didn;t pay for it. It reminds me of a dollar store 'imitation' scent... close to something lovely but not actually there. (My experience was a bit distracted by the gross stench of Allure Sensuelle on the other arm though- I tried them both at the same time to sense the connection... which seems to be marketing, not note.)
01st April, 2009
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Shalimar by Guerlain

Well, I am astonished at how much I don;t like Shalimar. I always though I would love it, as I respect Guerlain (often wear Vetiver), appreciate leathery/powdery (Cabochard), don't mind citrus ( wear Boucheron Homme to do dirty type housework) and sometimes love vanilla (eg in Dior Addict) though its done to death everywhere these days.

But Shalimar, after the gone-off baby powder smell, just seems confused and dull, as if I'd put some fridge cleaner in the vacuum bag.
09th March, 2009

Ombre Rose L'Original by Jean-Charles Brosseau

I am thinking that the bottle of Ombre Rose I just wasted my money on is off- as what I am about to scrub off in unrecognisable from the above reviews. Powdery, yes indeed, in a stale way that doesn;t match the rest of it. Like wearing great grannys decomposing shawl with a party dress.
Rose? Floral? No. It reminds me of Bulgari Black in its urban chemical first notes. Except Bulgari Black is exciting and makes me want to breathe it in again and again.
Luminous? Maybe like a UV light on a chemical spill. This is the first perfume I will be taking back to the shop for a refund.
21st February, 2009

Joop! Femme by Joop!

The beginning lasts too little to worry about, then in the middle I came a thick waft like a car-deodoriser. It might have been a chemical attempt at orange blossom- I have never smelled a perfume that really captures orange blossom well. It was pretty horrid, nowhere as stomach dropping as Armani Code though, which has to be the lamest attempt at orange blossom ever. ( I use a lot of neroli as an essential oil, so I know what it really smells like!) Once that died down though, what remains is a long lasting powdery amber. I have some genuine Arab rub on block amber at home to compare with, and this is not too far different.
30th January, 2009

Éclat d'Arpège by Lanvin

I bought this unsniffed as I was after a light summery floral with a hint of lemon. I can sense everything that is being said here... lemon start, peach, lightness, gorgeous, etc.. but so faintly that I can really only give this a neutral.

Five spritzes outside the store. Five more in the car on the way home- surprised that I could barely smell it even in a closed, warm space. Five more at home, when I realised this really is a summer scent- best worn with no clothes at all, as the sheerest silk is enough to stop any sillage.Had a swim, started again, and I've used up about half the bottle. There is a faint sensation if I sniff my skin directly. I'm glad I paid discount price, as this would be the most expensive perfume I have ever had, gram per thrill.
27th January, 2009

Armani Code for Women by Giorgio Armani

Yech. I am thinking that the positive reviews of this stuff are written by member/publicists! LIke Elf, I yawned at the immediate fake vanilla intro. Half an hour later couldn't wait to wash off the stomach dropping mid note that reminded me of another horrible modern 'buy it for the name' job, Prada. Was that supposed to be jasmine? I don't like jasmine but at least I can usually recognise it. Orange and ginger I like but I couldn't detect them either. You couldn't pay me to wear this. btw The bottle I tried had the black squeezer I thought came with the 'Elixir' but was not labelled that.
24th January, 2009

Paul Smith London for Men by Paul Smith

First it smelled like dirty water, but eventually I could smell a poor cousin of lavender ( is that supposed to the the violet?). If I smelled this on a man's shirt I think I would wonder whether he washed often enough.
24th November, 2008

Diesel Green Feminine by Diesel

As this is still available in discount pharmacies and the like it is worth adding my 2c. Lime cordial. Possibly could be worn to a pre school fairy party with an appropriate pixie hat.
24th November, 2008

Black Violet by Tom Ford

I could hardly smell this in the store, however the SA, (who was very impressed that it was so expensive) gave me a sample to bring home. I had hopes for it, as a chap had excitedly bought another in the range (Tuscan Leather) while I was standing there, saying his family had contacted him from 'overseas' to get him to find it, as it is sold out 'over there'. Well, I hope he is more happy with his purchase than I would be if I had paid for this. A few drops and I can hardly breathe; it is so sweet and cloying it makes Angel seem spacious. I'll give it another half hour then go have a shower.

Half an hour later: It reminds me of a perfume oil one would buy in an Indian hippie clothes shop. It would be called something like 'aphrodisiac velvet' and no one would have to take it seriously. it would be possible to wear this somewhere you didn't want to impress anyone with your taste.
21st November, 2008

Bandit by Robert Piguet

I keep Bandit in its box and treat it like a slightly dangerous secret friend ... everytime I take it out, it's with a little thrill that am going on an adventure. On me it is immediately powerful, pungent and sexy (like real sex, not the sugarpinkgirly pretendy teasy stuff.) I definitely smell leather, maybe even horse! It is the perfect antidote to the current crop of celebrity fruit salad perfumes and reminds me that female beauty was not always so lightweight. I chopped firewood wearing it one day and felt like a warrior queen as it heated up with real sweat. I have the EDT and am interested to get the EDP now as well
21st November, 2008

Tea Rose by Perfumer's Workshop

Well for heaven's sake. All those years of spending a fortune on essential oils of rose, having bottles worth bulk $$ go off, being ripped off in souks... and all I had to do was spend the price of a couple of cups of coffee on something which may be chemical but which does the trick entirely!
Rose being about the only floral I really like, my current game is layering this with my usual range of nonfloral and dark perfumes to see what happens. So far have played with Bandit, Bulgari Black and Quorum as well as some Arab perfumes which of course it boosts beautifully. A great find after so long!
21st November, 2008
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Cabotine by Grès

Bought this unsniffed as I love the leathery powdery mysterious classic Cabochard.
Not just disappointed, but shocked! Was trying on some clothes just after spraying it and found the build up of the intense sticky (green carnation ?) note so overpowering in the change room I had to leave. The middle notes are OK, more 'pretty' but keep being overpowered by the lingering top blast which sticks to clothing. I should have paid more attention to the bottle... the mis-shapen overpowering fungal looking top is so very differnet to the sophisticated frosted bow of Cabochard I should have realised there would be nothing in common. I've tried it half a dozen times since to see if I could come around to it, but I;ve put it back in the box and hopefully will trade it sometime.
17th November, 2008 (last edited: 21st November, 2008)

Quorum by Antonio Puig

I like Cabochard so I like Quorum... it works for me as a strong woman who doesn' t do florals.
02nd November, 2008

Palazzo by Fendi

Starts off unhappily reminiscent of Prada (nauseous melon)..fades to a pale Angel-ish whisper with a little more dominance to the spice. OK but I wouldn't buy it. If I needed this I would layer a walk-though air spritz of real Angel with something more challenging to balance, like Boucheron Homme or a vetiver. But then I like perfumes that talk to you rather than lie down for a rest...
18th September, 2008

Byzance by Rochas

A little harsh in the opening notes, but dries down to a light lemony/cardamom/incense style of vanilla. Not leathery or powdery like a Cabochard style chypre. A happy everyday wear to work sort of scent, which would make a good change from my usual strong weird direction (Bulgari Black, Bandit) without veering into candypopfloweryfakemelon
18th September, 2008

Madame Rochas (new) by Rochas

Madame Rochas moves straight to the powdery dry down of Cabochard (Parfum Gres) but without some of its leathery/leafy complexity. I would find this a simple and honest scent for every day wear, which competely avoids the horrors of chemical melons, plastic flower bombs and other contemporary attempts at 'perfume'
14th September, 2008

Euphoria by Calvin Klein

Does indeed begin like a lightweight Angel, then moves through a chemical melon phase like Prada by Prada. Turns my stomach. It did seem to be heading into something a bit more creamy/spicy when I scrubbed it about 25 minutes into its not doubt profitable but deriviative journey.
14th September, 2008

Prada (new) by Prada

I ought to like this as I love real amber. But this has been a great disappointment. The chemical melony introductory top note turns my stomach. The reference to Angel is understandable.. though somehow despite the odds I have some use for Angel. With Prada though that nauseous chemical note continues far too long to be bearable (sometimes introductory tops do have to be endured to get to the delicious... as in Cabochard); then the base notes are too sweet and vague to be interesting. For me, a scrubber. Anyone want to swap?
15th August, 2008

Cabochard by Grès

My new best friend! After the inital, misleading leafy blast, it quickly settles to a delicious, evocative, natural feeling, dry, almost musty aura that leaves my clothes smelling so familar and comfortable, I don't even want to wash them. This is the reliable friend- perfum I've been searching for. Layers well with vetivers too, like Guerlain's, Boucheron Homme or Chanel Sycomore. In fact I am thinking of buying one of those huge (expensive) bottles of Sycomore just to repear that trick over the long term. I bought two bottles of Cabochard .. they are so cheap, why not!
15th August, 2008

Sycomore Eau de Toilette by Chanel

The first hit of this is dark, heavy, assertive and I love it.. it reminds me of the essential oils I have always preferred to perfumes. I get almost none of the 'floral' notes that people mention... but straight to sandalwood within 30 mins after application. I have started wearing it on my hands at bedtime... a lovely way to go to sleep... I used to put vetiver oil on my baby's pillows as a sedative many years ago.
17th July, 2008

Black by Bulgari

I first smelled this when a SA in a duty free shop responded to my * I can't stand Western (as opposed to Arab) perfumes, they all smell like fake jasmine * by offering me a spray of Black. I got the rubber and smoke with great pleasure; fancy that, a commercial perfume I like!!! Remembering that has led me to exploring commercial perfumes now ( though I have a good nose for notes, having studied aromatherapy in a previous decade)... and buying five different ones in the last week! I am exploring odd/masculine smells to match my first love (Terre d' Hermes on the way... and and am now that woman some reviewers say they admire who wears Black as standard.. to the shops... I keep smelling my arm and spritzing different places to keep the rubber/smoke/powdery combo rolling on all day. Adventures in Black, love it!
17th July, 2008

Cuir de Russie Parfum by Chanel

Well, how extraordinarily different we all are! I bought a 4ml bottle of this at great expense on eBay expecting to love it on the basis of reviews. My favorite scent is Bulgari Black, so I am not nervous of odd or 'dark' smells. But Cuir de Russie works not on me. First it smelled like the horse, rather than the leather. Then turned to soap, then disappeared. Which was a relief. So now I will be selling a tiny bottle of it somewhere, with only a few drops gone.

I am not entirely surprised to have a divergent opinion to others around smells /tastes though... I seem to be the only person on the globe who doesn;t like red wine!
17th July, 2008