Perfume Reviews

Reviews by Wingie

Total Reviews: 20

Replica Beach Walk by Martin Margiela

I actually really like this - it's an uncomplicated but well-done, true to its name beach scent, though I sampled it at the wrong time of year. I prefer it over Bobbi Brown Beach. The only caveat is that it was listed as a "top-seller" at Sephora, and I don't want to smell like the masses.
22nd November, 2017

Manakara by Indult

Opens with an over the top sticky, boozy, syrupy stewed fruits and liqueur note, which fades immediately to a bare-bones whisper of a fragrance that hints of rose with a bruised-fruit smell and a touch of smoke. Within seconds of applying it, I can no longer smell it unless I press my nose against my wrist. It's both structurally unbalanced and compositionally lacking, despite the top notch ingredients I'm sure were used.

The first fragrance by Francis Kurkdjian I am dissapointed by. I suppose it was bound to happen eventually.

22nd November, 2017

Mon musc à moi by A Lab on Fire

A non-sweet vanilla enveloped in a big woody-powdery, musky accord, somewhat aloof. The fragrance is neither warm nor cold, with the vanilla note similar to that in Diptyque Eau Duelle. The composition is not sweet like many of this house's other offerings, yet has significant heft and sillage, and is easily unisex. It's quite nice in cooler weather.

It's well done and I might have been tempted to get my hands on more if it weren't for the fact that I slightly prefer Eau Duelle over this. They are too similar in my view to warrant having both.
22nd November, 2017
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Panthea by Stéphane Humbert Lucas 777

I ordered a sample of this from Luckyscent after reading their description of it and thinking this might be a lovely iris for cooler weather.

Imagine my surprise when I sampled it and found it to smell like a lovely spring green floral, reminding me immediately in fact of Parfums de Nicolai Temps d'Une Fete. Don't ask me how Panthea smells similar to a green floral like Temps d'Une Fete since the list of notes is completely different. I have sampled them together however and the similarity is definitely there, at least for me. Panthea is slightly more plush with a hint of powder, yet still very fresh, and airy enough to wear in warmer weather. It is definitely iris-dominant. Temps d'Une Fete smelled sharper on my skin.

Another basenoter had a similar experience with Mortal Skin, where the fragrance smelled nothing like the note pyramid. Panthea is definitely a well-made fragrance, beautiful in fact, and Stephen Humbert Lucas clearly has some skill, but I don't know how he achieved the smell he achieved here with the ingredients that are listed. He might be the master of abstraction.

Try Panthea and see for yourself...
21st November, 2017

Made in Heaven by A Lab on Fire

A strong, sweet gourmand that indeed smells like Capn' Crunch cereal, which some other reviewers and bloggers online have already identified.

It was too thick and cloying for me. Be warned that this is a big, heady, thick gourmand, even more so than some of the house's other offerings, like What We Do in Paris is Secret. I love a good gourmand but after wearing this for a while it just became too much and was nausea-inducing.
21st November, 2017

Figue en Fleur by Andrée Putman

Quite lovely - I am surprised no one has reviewed this yet, since fig-based fragrances don't come around very often, and Diptyque Philosykos has gained its own dedicated following as the reference fig in perfumery since it was released in the 1990s. Figue en Fleur starts out with a fresh fig like Diptyque Philosykos, but dries down more floral with its edges softly rounded out, and no woods, yet is still approachable enough to be worn casually, and is easily unisex. It is also longer-lasting than Philosykos EDT.

A winner if you like fig-based fragrances. I had Philosykos on my wishlist but am now going to purchase this instead. I think it actually has Philosykos beat. As a bonus, it is also available in 30ml.
21st November, 2017

Femme de Dandy by D'Orsay

I got a sample of this in London a few years ago. I don't remember the opening but it quite quickly develops into a warm cinnamon milk accord, lightly spiced and comforting but not foody - similar to the warm gingerbread dry down of Bois Des Iles. The previous reviewer Alityke was very accurate in calling it a 'luxurious fur coat' of a fragrance.

I didn't find out until later that this fragrance was done by Francis Kurkdjian. So far, every thing I've smelled that was made by him has in my opinion been respectfully done, even if it isn't something I would personally wear myself.
28th September, 2017

Sweet Redemption by By Kilian

Candyfloss Orange Blossom.

Really, it's just a copy of L'Artisan's Vanilia - there is the same massive overdose of ethylmaltol (candyfloss), and side by side the two smell sufficiently similar on drydown, with the Sweet Redemption simply replacing the Vanilla in Vanilia with Orange Blossom. Sweet Redemption, unsurprisingly, also smells like much higher quality materials were used.

If that sounds good to you, or if you are lamenting the discontinuation of L'Artisan Vanilia, which hasn't been around for a while now, you can pick up a bottle of this at a pretty hefty price.
27th September, 2017

Dulcis in Fundo by Profumum

Rich, Orange Creamsicle in a Bottle

I tried this as I'm a vanilla lover... it smells very literally of a delicious, rich orange creamsicle pop. Very foody. The vanilla can't really be picked out on its own but melds with the orange to create the creamsicle effect, which is quite linear for a good while. Then deep into the drydown, when on its last legs before petering out, it takes a turn toward the very sweet. Smells high quality and like it's made from top-notch and expensive ingredients - I love smelling it as it is mouthwatering, but I do not have a strong desire to walk around smelling this literally of an orange creamsicle pop. Which is somewhat of a relief, as it's $240 a bottle. Lovers of gourmands may want to give this a try though.

Givenchy's Organza Indecence is also an orange-vanilla composition, but not as foody as this.

Pros: Rich, foody, and delicious
Cons: Do you really want to smell this literally of orange creamsicle?"

12th October, 2013

Vanille Absolu by Montale

Sublime Vanilla With Not Much Else

I sampled this last fall with a handful of other vanilla scents when I was looking for a very vanilla-centered fragrance for my collection for fall and winter. I put it on after dinner, and initially thought "Whoa, that is a vanilla bomb of a fragrance", but then unabashedly wore it every day until the sample was gone; it was a guilty pleasure, like candy or chocolate; but not as sweet as some other vanilla bomb fragrances, with just a touch of smoke and woods to balance it. It is perfect.

Pros: Hello, VANILLA!; Reasonably priced
Cons: Don't like the opaque bottle - can't see how much perfume is left."

23rd August, 2013

J'Adore by Christian Dior

This review is for the original formulation, sold in 1999. There is a difference!

The original version, sold in 1999, is very good; a classic for its era, which was largely an era of fruity-florals. The J'Adore that is being sold in stores today is crap. Pure crap. I think the distinguishment between the two needs to be made because there are reviews of what seem to be the current version saying it smells like house cleaner, shampoo, soap, etc, which is true. J'Adore has been reformulated - more than once I believe - with detrimental results.

But the original formulation is good, one of the best fruity-florals to come out of the 1990s. It can still be found on ebay, the box shows the Christian Dior label in a purple circle instead of a gold one. It is on my wishlist as a collector's item because I know one day it will no longer be available. Samples of the older version can also be found at Surrender to Chance.

Even if you smell the current version and like it, I encourage you to seek out the original version. To me there is no point owning the current stuff when the real McCoy can still be had and is miles better.

Pros: A classic; one of the best in the fruity-floral category.
Cons: The original formula can only be found today on ebay."

23rd August, 2013

Infusion d'Iris Eau de Parfum Absolue by Prada

Gorgeous. I actually smell iris in this, which I didn't in the original, and it's rounded out by madagascar vanilla, orange blossom, and tonka bean. This is how the first Infusion d'Iris should have smelled, IMO.

I wish it lasted just a tad longer, but the fact that it is being touted as a limited edition will likely be enough for me to buy a bottle.
12th November, 2012 (last edited: 21st January, 2013)

De Bachmakov by The Different Company

I had high expectations of this after reading all the positive reviews on blogs, but was very dissapointed. I think it smells like lemon Pine Sol.

At least I saved myself the $160 it costs for a full bottle.
12th November, 2012
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Archives 69 by Etat Libre d'Orange

The pink berries and pepper are mostly what I can pick out from this. To me it has a smell reminiscent of the old individually-wrapped Bazooka Joe bubble gum, but not sugared, adolescent, or gimmicky in any way. It's sophisticated, delicious and fun. Longevity is so-so.
21st October, 2012

La Violette by Annick Goutal

Too much sugar in this for me. I would classify it as a fruity floral, but unlike other fruity florals, the violet adds a certain shyness or innocence. Reminds me of a little girl with a sugared lollipop.
28th April, 2010

Heure Exquise by Annick Goutal

Heure Exquise is perfect if you like Chanel No.19's composition, but find it as a fragrance to be too haughty, cold, or "mean". Heure Exquise shares the same galbanum-iris accord as No.19, but is slightly warmer and more romantic. I think it's exquisite, and a must-try for anyone who loves iris, or green fragrances in general.
28th April, 2010

Angel by Thierry Mugler

Never thought I would like this scent - or rather, never thought it was for me. It sounded just too gourmand, heavy and foody for my liking, not to mention it's thought of as a 'loud' fragrance (referencing Luca Turin), and one of the first fragrances I ever owned was another 'loud' fragrance that I was never able to pull off, Gucci Rush.

A salesperson offered me a sample, and I do like it. I find it rich, but not heavy (unlike Organza Indecence), and I feel more comfortable wearing it than I thought I would. When I first spray it on I can't stop smelling my wrist. For me the best part is the early stages though, with all its rich delicious gourmand notes. Then Angel dries down to a dry masculine patchouli base on me, and it was this stage that elicited a comment from my mother that I smelled vaguely of an old man.
14th December, 2009

Jean Paul Gaultier Classique by Jean Paul Gaultier

Way too powdery and sweet. I definitely could't take very much of this. I would have to wear it only occasionally.
08th December, 2009

Parisienne by Yves Saint Laurent

Sickeningly, sickeningly sweet... for me this was cotton candy in a bottle, and we're talking about a YSL, not an Aquolina. An nst review said it's geared toward women in their 30's, older than the target age for Elle but younger than that for Opium and Paris. To me that is just... wrong. I much prefer Elle to this. The best thing this fragrance has going for it is the ravishing-looking Kate Moss in its ads (who incidentally also launched a fragrance in 2009).
07th December, 2009

Tommy Girl by Tommy Hilfiger

Tommy Hilfiger has always had a very 'all-american' image as a brand, and Tommy Girl has has something of an all-american feel to it - clean, fresh, and one of the most inoffensive scents out there. The smell of spare, modern freshness combined with modest sillage and longevity is in keeping with an eau de cologne, and I see it as best suited for summer wear, but it also could easily be worn at work. Although the fragrance presents itself as extremely straight-forward, linear, and non-complex, it is a very well-done composition freshly built around a tea note - an early example of the tea genre and still one of the best.

It could also make for a sensible alternative to the slew of 'clean' fragrances that perfume houses are popping out these in increasing numbers and marketing as 'anti-perfumes', meant to evoke smells of soap, clean laundry, etc. Tommy Girl is substantially cheaper than many of them, just as undemanding, yet arguably done better.
06th December, 2009 (last edited: 24th January, 2012)