Reviews by Oproust

    Oproust's avatar
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    Showing 61 to 83 of 83.

    A*Men / Angel Men by Thierry Mugler

    A*Men has such a reputation as a love it or hate it fragrance that I assumed the worst and never bothered to try it. I came to A*Men via Pure Havane, which I bought on a whim. The SA threw a few samples of A*Men in the bag. I love Pure Havane and decided to give the leader of the pack, A*Men, a try. Wow! The opening blast of citrus, helional, lavender and peppermint told me straight away that this ain't no Pure Havane. Just as I was about to say, "What the hell have I sprayed on my defenseless wrist?", the coffee and tar mid notes began to emerge, making for a strange but intriguing citrus/lavender/coffee accord. As the basenotes emerged from somewhere deep within that goofy star on the front of the bottle, I was taken by the rich chocolate and coffee accord, infused with silky caramel; the exact opposite of the vibe I get from Derby, Aramis, etc. Sometimes, a man just needs a little coffee and chocolate in his life. Sometimes not. As I write this review, a light spritz of A*Men bubbles on my skin, while my neighbor shuts his windows and my spooked, anosmic cat runs out the front door. Like I said, it's a love it or leave it fragrance.

    02nd December, 2011 (Last Edited: 06th December, 2011)


    Nobile by Gucci

    Yes, I'll take this one please. Gucci Nobile is a fantastic green fougere. The crisp, citrus/lavender/green opening of Gucci Nobile is very similar to Bowling Green, although I also detect a hint of Tsar and Jazz clamoring around in there. And yes, Drakkar Noir hovers ever so close but dares not enter Nobile's air space. The mid notes are wonderful, with a predominant floral/green accord. The fir note helps balance the entire mid note composition. The basenotes are green/woodsy, mossy with a touch of smoke. Nobile is a classic fougere that has sadly passed on to the Isle of Souls of Discontinued Fragrances. Makes me want to slap some Rachmaninoff in the CD player.

    30th November, 2011 (Last Edited: 01st December, 2011)


    JHL by Aramis

    I like cinnamon on toast once in a while, but not on my chest. Intially, I found JHL repulsive and returned my blind-bought bottle. But over time, as I assembled the Gentleman's Collection, I thought I'd give it another try. I'm glad I did. JHL is a cinnamon-carnation explosion that will either make you cry like a baby or gasp in horrified ecstasy. I find the cinnamon-carnation/floral heart of JHL compelling, but I grow tired of it after a few hours. JHL doesn't develop much over time to my nose. It softens as it settles into the base, but the heart notes beat on and on. I'll give this potent monster a thumbs up because it is an interesting, compelling change of pace scent for me and is unlike anything else in my wardbrobe.

    27th November, 2011


    Polo by Ralph Lauren

    Polo Green moves past the olfactory border skirmish of many modern fragrances and straight to thermo-nuclear war. The initial blast of Polo Green can be unsettling and off-putting if over applied. This stuff can clear a room faster than a honey badger on the loose. Apply with care and you get a beautiful, pine, leather, woodsy, patchouli scent that is unabashedly masculine and self-assured. Polo Green is a true masterpiece. One of the best coniferous fragrances out there. If you haven't already done so, do try, do buy, but for god's sake, do not over-apply.

    03rd November, 2011


    Eau Sauvage by Christian Dior

    This is Martin...Mad Men...Martini...Magnificent! This is the 1960's cocktail party in the Hollywood Hills. This is the International Style house with the million dollar view. This is one of the finest citrus scents out there. The citrus/herbal/floral compostion of Eau Sauvage has been described spot on by many other reviewers, so no need to go there. I wear Eau Sauvage often, for many occassions. Application on the chest results in very good longevity on my skin. While I detect no olfactory savagery in Eau Sauvage, I'm sure in a one-on-one cage match, it wastes no time in dispatching with AdG. Enough said.

    29th October, 2011


    Rive Gauche pour Homme by Yves Saint Laurent

    Brilliant brother of Brut and Barbasol. Very nice opening. Anise is the most dominant note to my nose. Lavender and clove hold the mid notes, followed by patchouli and a touch of vetiver in the drydown. On first wearing, I had my doubts about whether I wanted to smell like shaving cream. No worries, Rive Gauche pour Homme is much more than a shaving cream fragrance. It is more complex than I first thought. I love the transition from the anise opening, to a fresh, smooth, shaving cream vibe, to a slightly chalky, slightly spicy drydown with the Barbasol backdrop never really going away. Rive Gauche pour Homme is a modern masculine classic. Highly recommended, and a perfect counterpoint to my electric Norelco razor.

    12th August, 2011


    Animale Animale for Men by Animale Parfums

    I'm not sure why I passed this one by over the years. I'm glad I've found it. Animale Animale is a gourmand I really enjoy. The fruity/chocolate/mossy top and mid notes in Animale Animale are very appealing. While fragrances like Animale Animale can be cloying and even intimidating (A*Men, for example), I find this one to have just the right blend of sweet and dry accords. The chocolate, vanilla and amber notes in the drydown help Animale Animale avoid an excessively arid accord, especially given the early emergence of the moss note, followed by the patchouli note in the base. I find Animale Animale to be a much more versatile fragrance than A*Men and Rochas Man. Longevity is adequate and the sillage varies from strong upon application to a close-to-the-skin scent in the drydown. If you are a fan of gourmands, give this one a try. If you are not a fan of gourmands, give this one a try.

    06th August, 2011


    A*Men Pure Havane by Thierry Mugler

    I missed the A*Men Pure Malt train. Fortunately, I have a first class seat on the A*Men Pure Havane express. I love this fragrance. This is one of my favorite gourmands. Cherry tobacco, honey and vanilla notes dominate up front. The cacao note emerges early in the progression of Pure Havane. These notes remain for a number of hours before the patchouli appears. Longevity is excellent and sillage is very good. I've never tried any of the A*Men fragrances until I discovered this one by chance at a local department store. I promptly purchased two bottles.

    04th August, 2011 (Last Edited: 28th November, 2011)


    Devin by Aramis

    Devin opens with a strong blast of galbanum, which pushes the citrus top notes to the side. VERY green opening. If you don't enjoy green fragrances, this one won't change your mind. The jasmine note emerges very quickly and dominates the mid notes, creating a green floral accord that reminds me of a pleasant stroll through the historic district in Charleston, South Carolina on a spring morning. As the mid notes continue to develop, carnation and pine are noticeable and I detect a hint of cinnamon. The drydown smells like "green leather" to my nose, with a touch of patchouli and oak moss. Devin has moderate longevity on my skin, 5 - 6 hours. Devin is not a sillage monster, yet I do receive compliments when I wear it. Devin is my kind of fragrance: green, complex, evocative. Similar to a $100 bill.

    31st July, 2011 (Last Edited: 04th August, 2011)


    Sartorial by Penhaligon's

    The first time I wore Sartorial, I thought it smelled like a very refined and much more complex version of the vintage Brut. I am very partial to aromatic fougeres and Sartorial is a very welcome addition. The list of notes in Sartorial is daunting, 24 and counting. I'm not sure what metallic effect, ozonic effect and old wood effect are, but I don't care. This stuff smells great. I won't even attempt to describe the progression of notes. Others have done that very well. And with Sartorial, Penhaligon's has done a modern, classy fougere very well. So pull your charcoal grey suit off the rack, starch your white shirt, tie your Windsor knot, shine your wing tips and spray on some Sartorial to complete the vibe.

    28th July, 2011


    Lomani by Lomani

    Lomani Pour Homme = one part Drakkar Noir, one part Bowling Green and one part Tuscany. I enjoy each of these fragrances and was pleasantly surprised when I stumbled upon a bottle of Lomani in a discount store. I've read the comparisons to Drakkar Noir. I agree; very similar openings. Lomani's citrus opening is sharp, but I find it less obtrusive than its rather rambunctious cousin. The lavender top note emerges from the citrus notes, but it never becomes a "lavender" scent. The juniper is pleasantly prominent in the mid notes. I smell flashes of Baie de Genievre, one of Creed's better offerings. The drydown is "dry". The patchouli and oak moss are the most distinctive base notes. The vetiver is not dominant which is a plus, since I dislike strong vetiver scents. I really enjoy Lomani Pour Homme and wear it often. If you are a fan of shape shifting fougeres this one is worth a try. Inexpensive, but quality ingredients. There is enough going on here to hold my interest and elicit an enthusiastic thumbs up.

    27th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 12th August, 2011)


    Lalique pour Homme by Lalique

    This first time I tried Lalique Pour Homme (EDP), my initial thought was "This reminds me of the iris in Dior Homme." While I don't detect the lipstick accord that some folks identify in Dior, iris is a major player in Lalique's mid notes. After the citrus and lavender notes fade (fairly quickly), we are left with a powdery iris that lasts on my skin for about 1 1/2 hours. This is where Lalique almost loses me. Too much powder, but then the iris begins to fade a bit as the patchouli and vanilla emerge, providing a nice balance to the overall character of the fragrance. My nose completely misses the jasmine and lily-of-the valley. The amber accord in the dry down is restrained (more so than in New York, for example.) Lalique PH dries down into a smooth and dignified fragrance with a discernible sandalwood note filling out its development. Lalique PH is a fine office fragrance (after the first hour of application) and also works well for formal occassions. I recommend it as an alternative to PdN New York and Dior Homme.

    26th July, 2011


    Baldessarini by Baldessarini

    Baldessarini is a woody oriental that is a wonderful fruity, tobacco fragrance. I initially dismmised this one because the tobacco note overwhelmed me the first time I gave it a test run. My nose has clearly changed since then and now I can't get enough of this relatively unknown (or ignored) fragrance. When I first tried Baldessarini, I completely missed the wonderful fruity top notes. I'm not sure how I missed them, but I did. Now, I not only experience the tangerine and bitter orange, but mint and fir are very noticeable right out of the bottle. This fragrance has a very appealing opening. The fruit, mint and fir blend so well. The mint becomes more prominent in the mid note phase of Baldessarini, although the fruity note remains a major player well into the progression. The patchouli emerges and provides an effective bridge into the woody-tobacco drydown. The tobacco note emerges slowly and smoothly and is the perfect compliment to the fruity nature of the top and mid notes. I don't find the tobacco base to be overpowering. The woody notes are noticeable, lending a slightly dry texture, but the tobacco note takes center stage.

    Baldessarini (edc) lasts approximately 6 hours on my skin. I just ordered the concentree version and I'm really looking forward to comparing the longevity of the two versions. However, I'm also very interested in the basic nature of the concentree version in relation to the edc. Hopefully, no Eau Sauvage Extreme train wreck type issues here.

    I find Baldessarini to be a fine formal fragrance, but I wear it for other occassions as well. I don't wear this one to the office. Baldessarini. Try it, enjoy it.

    14th May, 2011


    Eau de Guerlain by Guerlain

    Simply the best citrus I know. Eau de Guerlain starts with a zingy citrus blast with just the right dose of herbs to tone down the sharpness that plagues too many citrus fragrances. The heavy herbal accord found in Eau Sauvage is largely absent in Eau de Guerlain. I detect intermittent rose and carnation in the mid notes, but the jasmin and patchouli aren't particulary prominent to my nose. I find the moss and musky drydown very pleasant and surprisingly long lasting. While I enjoy Eau Sauvage, Eau de Rochas Homme, George F Trumper GFT and YSL pour Homme, I prefer Eau de Guerlain because of the fine citrus-herbal balance,the great mossy-musky drydown and the very good longevity. Perfect for a hot summer day.

    12th May, 2011


    A Taste of Heaven by By Kilian

    This is my favorite lavender-vanilla fragrance, by far. For me, this easily surpasses Caron pour un Homme which is too minty for my taste and Jicky which is, well,..too Jicky. A Taste of Heaven is deceptively simple and silky smooth. Foetidus describes the progression of A Taste of Heaven perfectly. The lavender, bergamot, floral and vanilla notes blend very well and the transition from the top notes to the mid notes is flawless. There is nothing forced. The lavender recedes a bit during the drydown. It is there, but tonka and vanilla rule the base, with a slight tinge of burnt sugar. I also detect light patchouli and oak moss in the dry down. This is one of those "I can't separate my nose from my wrist" fragrances. It smells equally fabulous on a man or a woman.

    11th May, 2011 (Last Edited: 14th May, 2011)


    Canoé by Dana

    I recently added Canoe to my wardrobe in honor of its iconic status as a reference aromatic fougere per Michael Edwards. I find the top notes to be a bit unsettling, alcohol, lemon and I'm not sure what else. Hairspray comes to mind. Fortunately, this fades fairly quickly. I get a definite Brut vibe with this one. The mid notes pass me by entirely. The tonka and vanilla base notes emerge and dominate early in the progression with a noticeable heliotrope note. No oakmoss to my nose. I rate this a neutral for its pleasant, persistent dry down and its long history of making guys smell pretty good. The new formulation, which is now (according to the box) "Made in China with Fragrance Oil Made in the USA", is the only version I've tried. I've smelled it on others years ago but never gave it much thought. I'd love to get my hands on the "Made in France" version.

    10th May, 2011 (Last Edited: 30th November, 2011)


    Aventus by Creed

    Creed got this one right. Pineapple and apples right out of the gate. These notes dominate the opening with the blackcurrant and bergamot scrambling to reach the top. The dry birch and patchouli bring a pleasant depth to the fruit powered top notes. Very nice transition into the mid notes. The base notes of musk, ambregris and vanilla are prominent, but the dry birch and patchouli never really leave. I detect a faint dose of oak moss in the base. Aventus lasts forever on my skin, with very good sillage. I perceive this to be a dark scent, even with the bright fruity opening. It reminds me of a crisp fall day in the woods, slightly overcast, sun beginning to slip away, Green Irish Tweed nipping at its heels.

    10th May, 2011


    Cyprès-Musc by Creed

    I really wanted to like Cypres-Musc. Unfortunately, this fragrance smells like soap. I waited for it to develop and still, soap. I asked my wife, "What does this smell like to you?" She said, "Ivory soap." To my nose, case closed. I can't recommend this one.

    04th May, 2011 (Last Edited: 14th May, 2011)


    Gris Clair by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    In general, I am not a fan of lavender fragrances. However, with Gris Clair I throw my previous aversions aside. The lavender/smoky/amber core of this fragrance is stunning. The amber and smoky accord tame the lavender enough to make this a pleasure to wear. It far surpasses Caron pour un Homme which my nose rejects immediately and my brain does likewise. When I first wore Gris Clair, I wasn't overwhelmed, in fact, I wasn't all that impressed. I set it aside for three years, even tried to sell the bottle. I'm sure glad I didn't. This is a masculine, elegant, sophisticated fragrance. My nose has changed over time and after years of sniffing, I can now appreciate fragrances I quickly gave up on in the past. You've got to give this one a try (or two). Gris Clair is quickly moving up my list of favorites. I suspect it will stay there awhile.

    04th May, 2011


    Dolce & Gabbana Pour Homme by Dolce & Gabbana

    Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme is a classical fougere that starts with a brisk citrus opening that quickly belnds with the lavender and pepper middle notes, followed by a distinct sage note. The citrus never really leaves the progression, holding on all the way into the light musk base. Tobacco and tonka bean are also prominent in the base, with the tobacco never quite taking center stage. Soft woods round out the dry down. Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme is a very versatile fragrance that is suitable for work or jeans and a tee shirt. This fragrance projects well and has excellent longevity. This is a fragrance I wear quite often. When in doubt, I reach for this one (must be the velvety blue box). I highly recommend Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme.

    27th April, 2011 (Last Edited: 10th May, 2011)


    Fou d'Absinthe by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    If you've ever spent time in the great pine forests of northern Wisconsin, you know Fou d'Absinthe. This is my favorite confierous fragrance by far. It is a unique fougere-- resinous, spicy in the middle, slightly earthy and hauntingly evocative in its pine-fir base. This is not Polo, not Pino, not Blenheim Bouquet. If it is confierous you want, you've got to try Fou d'Absinthe. Longevity is very good if the scent is properly applied. Two sprays at the neckline, below a shirt will hold Fou d'Absinthe on my skin for at least 8 hours. A spray on the wrist only gets me about 4 hours. This is a great cool weather frangrance, which I find very versatile. The Holy Grail is in sight, but there are miles to go before I sleep, miles to go before I sleep...

    23rd April, 2011


    XS pour Homme by Paco Rabanne

    XS is a fruity fougere that is versatile, smooth and a pleasure to wear. After a green, minty, spicy, and somewhat fruity opening that I find similar to Eternity, XS transitions nicely into the juniper, floral heart that still holds a touch of green before settling into a light musk and wood base. Longevity is good and sillage is moderate. XS is suitable for office wear and is also a fine casual scent. I must admit, I was a bit skeptical when I first sampled this. The top notes are my least favorite stage of the fragrance, especially during the first few minutes after take off. I almost gave up on this one before I gave it a full wear. I recommend XS. Not a classic, but it smells great. Yes, this is XS and let's not "trim it" as was suggested by one esteemed critic who shall not be named.

    21st April, 2011


    Tsar by Van Cleef & Arpels

    Tsar is the first fragrance I fell in love with upon initial sampling in the early 1990's. I bought a gift set that included the EDTand after shave. This fresh fougere has a crisp green opening that develops a slightly spicy and fruity character within the first 30 minutes of application. I find a distinct tartness as it transitions into the heart notes, but the fruity, green notes remain throughout the life of the fragrance, though they take a less prominent role over time. As the base develops, the oak moss note emerges accompanied by a dash of pathchouli. This lasts for quite some time until the sandal enters the progression. I detect a restrained leather note in the base. Tsar is an elegant fragrance that starts strong and mellows to a pleasant skin scent that invites wrist sniffs. Tsar has been reformulated at least twice since its launch in the late 1980s. I do not recommend the first reformulation which is packaged in the ribbed bottle with the gold top. In my opinion, it is not even close to the original. If you can't obtain a bottle of the original, I recommend the current version in the dark green, opaque bottle with the black top. This is the new version that is shown on the VC&A website. It is very close to the original formulation. A side by side comaprison confirms that. Tsar is an excellent choice for formal occassions, but it can also be worn at the office. One of my favorites. I will always have a bottle in my wardrobe.

    16th April, 2011 (Last Edited: 07th December, 2011)

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