Reviews by great_badir

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    great_badir
    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Pierre Cardin Pour Monsieur by Pierre Cardin

    I don't get it. I just don't get it. I should love it - lots of citrus, geranium and leather, hints of Eau Sauvage. But all I get is amber for about an hour and then it's gone. Like completely gone. I know I have a legit bottle, but I don't get any of the notes other reviews mention, the colour seems to be much darker than the stuff usually is, it's a splash not a spray and it doesn't smell to me like it's worth a lot more than it costs. It's too sweet, too fleeting and, price aside, too darn disappointing.

    26 May, 2010

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    Apparition Homme Intense by Ungaro

    Unlike most people, I don't actually mind the original Apparition Homme. But it's just okay and wearable. This Intense flanker, however, takes it to another level entirely - it's much more balanced and way less synthetic. All of the notes from the original are there, with the addition of a few more oriental hints chucked in - mainly a big hit of star anise. I get as much calone in this as in the original, but calone doesn't put me off as it does a lot of people. The dry-down is a sweetish, smoky vetiver with that anise and tea hanging on with it and that's where it holds until, right at the very end, several hours later, the anise morphs more into a liquorice accord. I don't quite understand the comments about its lack of longevity - this stuff sticks on me for ages and, were it not for the fact it smells so great, it would outstay its welcome. And then some. Given that impressive longevity, sillage is perhaps not as much as one might expect, but it's still more than adequate. It's not U 1, 2 or 3, but it's by far the best thing Ungaro have released for years.

    06 May, 2010

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    Corduroy by Zirh

    Not sure I get the Bulgari Black or PH relation here - sure, Corduroy shares notes with both and the dry downs are similar, but to me they are just similar and not identical enough to consider Corduroy as a cheaper alternative to either one. Anyway, Corduroy is my second favourite of the three Zirh frags - it's very rich without being cloying and shares little with the other two Zirh releases, unlike many houses (Guerlain and Trumper, for example) who tend to have a recognisable signature accord in most of their releases. Corduroy, on me, also has a fascinating development - opens almost like an aquatic with fresh fruits and a touch of citrus, with that big white lavender (not unwelcome) ushering it into the gentle spices at the middle. I get a wonderfully warm cinnamon at this point, before it settles into its pleasant woody base, with that lavender and cinnamon hanging on to the very end. Sillage and longevity is better than Zirh, but still could be better. Also, Corduroy tends to be the most expensive of the three - whilst Zirh and Ikon can often be had for next to nothing online and in stores like TK/TJ Maxx, Corduroy rarely dips below £20 per bottle. But that's still a good price for this commendable also-ran.

    06 May, 2010

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    Aqua di Roma Uomo by Laura Biagiotti

    Undeservedly the recipient of much negative press, Roma Uomo is a nice fruity and floral, albeit quite linear and very light, aquatic which, to me, doesn't smell as synthetic as most other reviews suggest. It opens with a fresh grape blast which quickly settles into its not-too-feminine floral base and that's about all it does. But, to me, that doesn't really matter because it's bright and fresh - a good aquatic. Unfortunately it is let down by its sillage and longevity, but then neither are expected to be amazing with a frag of this lightness. Despite that, I think it's a pleasant and worthy also-ran.

    06 May, 2010

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    Hugo Energise by Hugo Boss

    A really nice fruity (masculine) floral which, I think, is completely different than its regular Hugo counterpart. And, unlike a lot of HB's 00s releases, it's not another aquatic. To my nose its development is quite linear and there is little change between initial spray, dry down and subsequent base - a touch of fruit and a big floral note when the artemesia comes in. Unfortunately I don't pick up any coriander or pepper, but the artemesia going into (and staying with) the cocoa is REALLY nice, and its those two notes that dominate the whole thing. Despite them being sweet and feminine notes on paper, here they err far more on the masculine, perhaps thanks to the double layer of coriander acting as a stabiliser rather than a note in its own right. Sillage and longevity are both excellent on me, in fact among the best of all HB frags. Energise is one of the few non-aquatics which is unlikely to offend anyone and is therefore suitable for all occasions. Another excellent frag from HB.

    06 May, 2010

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    Sandalwood Cologne by Geo F Trumper

    Sandalwood appears to be quite a difficult fragrance to pull off successfully. The genuinely brilliant sandalwoods can be counted on one hand - Floris, Crabtree & Evelyn (moreso the original, though the current version isn't half bad), Caswell Massey, Art of Shaving and Yardley's classic Sandalwood, sadly no longer in production. By rights, Trumper should have come up with quite a good and true sandalwood but, as is the case with Taylors of Old Bond Street sandalwood effort (which is actually worse), all they've managed is a weird and very sweet sort-of woody frag. Heavy on the amber, vanilla, clary sage and white jasmine, the sandalwood and its darker notes (leather, spice, patchouli) seem to be completely lost in the mix, to the point of being non-existent at which point it becomes similar to Trumper's leatherless Spanish Leather (though Spanish Leather is, in itself, very nice juice indeed). One area where Sandalwood excels, unlike most other Trumper releases, is in its longevity and silage - lasts all day on me and a couple of squirts project very well indeed. The only problem is when it's as sweet as it is, you don't really want that longevity or projection. Disappointing, too sweet and nowhere near woody enough.

    06 May, 2010

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    Zirh by Zirh

    Interesting company, Zirh. They're well known for a plethora of heavily marketed, massively over-priced grooming and skincare products which promise the earth but deliver very little, yet on the side they also quietly release a couple of little known, inoffensive but generally well regarded fragrances which are very reasonably priced. Their self titled signature scent is the least good of the three available, but it's still pleasant smelling and, most importantly, dirt cheap. It's a typical linear fresh aquatic which will win no awards for being new or bold, with notes listed in the pyramid that most people won't be able to pick out (I get no such fruity opening as is promised, or anything woody at the base), but it's reliable, familiar, unlikely to upset anyone and works no matter how much or how little you spray on. Correctly marketed as a skin scent (even though the bottle itself says it's an EDT), it's VERY subtle on the skin, but nevertheless has half decent longevity and projects just enough to remain good throughout the day. It also looks great - the bottle and tube it comes in are nifty and have influenced several bigger releases since. Sure, it lacks the invention and complexity of Ikon and the richness of Corduroy, but when you can pick up 125ml for £10 (sometimes less if you look in the right places) and compare it to its similar (and often much more expensive) stablemates, Zirh is a guaranteed score. If only they could get the spray pump working properly!

    06 May, 2010

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    Skye by Geo F Trumper

    Trumper's first step into the world of aquatics is an absolute clanger, mainly because they tried to make it a modern aquatic with traditional aspects, but have failed miserably to achieve a perfect balance, something which Aramis is much better at with their aquatics (all of which contain an element of trad). It opens quite nicely with a bright and fresh smack in the face, but almost immediately Trumper's strong and musty powder signature (found in a good three quarters of their frags) bullies its way to the front and completely takes over, turning this bright blue juice into an awful, stuffy, typically traditional English stereotype from the 40s that should be a very dark shade of brown. It has a heavy "old man" smell about it, something which most of the old English companies are guilty of with many of their scents, and no doubt something which those who are fed up with fresh aquatics, greens and citruses would love. If you threw some spice and woods into the mix, then Trumper would almost be attempting their own version of Old Spice and, whilst Skye is not quite as bad as that behemoth, it's one of the worst offerings in their catalogue.

    06 May, 2010

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    Gianfranco Ferré for Man by Gianfranco Ferré

    Good to see this one enjoying a bit of a revival of late. I used to wear this in the late 90s when you could pick it up in most places, but then it seemed to disappear from the shelves, despite not being discontinued. Perhaps it was due to the release of its intended replacement (GFF Uomo), which was (is) terrible, that put people off buying Ferre so it wasn't economically viable to have it on the shelves. Which is a shame because Ferre is and always has been a massively under rated and complex frag. Opens almost like the base of a classic barbershop fougere - soapy citrus and a hint of powder. I don't get much in the middle, but the base is a lovely woody leather which simmers away nicely for hours. Really good stuff.

    06 May, 2010

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    Extract of West Indian Limes by Geo F Trumper

    Hands down THE best and most authentic lime frag available from any house. A bracing and intense opening, as if you've just plunged your face into a bucket of freshly squeezed lime juice. It's a very simple, very linear scent - no top, middle, or base, just lime. Unfortunately, as is the nature of simple and linear citrus scents, longevity and silage are almost zero - it's gone almost completely inside of an hour or so. If you want a long lasting citrus frag that projects well, then this isn't for you. If you don't mind a fleeting citrus but want to apply regularly, then the price point suggests you should be looking to 4711 or Farina instead. If, however, you want a quick limey punch in the face and don't mind spending a bit more for the quality, then you really need to look no further.

    06 May, 2010

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    Eau Sauvage by Christian Dior

    I almost need to do three separate reviews for this - I currently have a vintage old style (tall and thin) bottle from I don't know when (I'm guessing 80s, maybe even late 70s) and a bottle of the current formulation, both of which of course smell different from each other, and in the 90s I owned another bottle which, as far as I can remember, smelt different again. Suffice to say I think ES smells great in any formulation. All three formulations that I know open with a big dry citrus which is, of course, one of the best non-trad EDC citruses on the market. Eases into a dry powdery and light musk base and bubbles away wonderfully for hours and hours and hours. But Eau Sauvage is by no means a monster - it's one of the most delicate of the big 60s releases and it more than stands up against any present day hyper expensive niche release that anyone cares to mention.

    06 May, 2010

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    Curzon by Geo F Trumper

    Dry dry dry. Curzon, one of Trumper's original classic scents, is now only available in aftershave form, the cologne having been dropped properly from the cologne range last year (at which point Trumper themselves were claiming it was one of only four scents NOT to have been reformulated from its original incarnation - take that as you will). This is a review for the cologne version, 30 and 50ml bottles and testers of which can still be found in some indie chemists here in the UK. Curzon is like a more subdued Aramis Devin. Surprisingly for a 19th century traditional English frag, Curzon is neither sweet and powdery, nor is it in your face. Opens with some citrus and bitter woods and settles down to a mossy and leathery base, with some very dry herbs all the way through and a hint of patchouli way down at the back. It's the weakest of the "Classic 4" (the other three being Astor, Marlborough and Wellington) in several senses (scentses!) of the word - it has the least longevity and silage, it's the least complex and is the least nice. But it isn't bad and, if you like the idea of Devin but find it way too strong, then Curzon is perfect. It's a safe and conservative traditional frag which is unlikely to offend anyone.

    06 May, 2010

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    GFT by Geo F Trumper

    This review is for the old formulation from a few years back. A quite brilliant modern take on their classic (and itself still brilliant, albeit short-lived on the skin) West Indian Limes, GFT is a lemon/orange citrus frag with some delicate herbs thrown in to compliment. The tarragon, often lending an unusual and almost gourmand accord to many juices it appears in, here is only just detectable in the middle and acts more as a supporting frame for the lemon to latch onto, which means that over four hours later the lemon is still there. Impressive for a citrus. Slowly, but surely, the whole thing melts into a light woody base, similar to Azzaro Pure Cedrat, slightly freshened by the "light musk" in the pyramid. Very well blended and balanced, GFT is probably the best frag Trumper have released since the 90s, specifically since Ajaccio Violets. The best thing about GFT, though, is the usual cloyingly sweet-powdery house accord, the down-fall of many a Trumper frag, is, by and large, a no show, leaving the simple notes to speak for themselves. The current formulation is, happily, pretty much identical to the original - the only difference I detect is that the citrus opening is not quite as intense, but otherwise it's still a five star frag and one of the most natural smelling synthetics currently available on the market.

    06 May, 2010

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    Hugo Element by Hugo Boss

    I don't consider myself part of the general under 40s fragrance crowd, but I don't mind admitting that I'm a sucker for Hugo Boss and Bulgari. I can count the total releases I haven't liked from both of these houses combined on one hand. Also, unlike many BNers, I'm not too quick to criticuse every aquatic that comes out. Element was released at the tail end of a time when HB seemed to be chucking out something new on a weekly basis and, even though most of them were fairly derivative and variations on a standard theme, I thought pretty much all of them were at worst not bad, at best brilliant. So it was with some disappointment when I discovered that Element, a frag I loved when I test sprayed it and smelt a breezy oceanic with citrus overtones, turned out to be a rather insipid and uninspiring oceanic/ozonic that didn't smell particularly oceanic or ozonic. Several reviews pick out the calone - I don't even get that. Nor do I get the citrus notes I got from the tester. Were it not for the fact that I tested and bought it from exactly the same (and legitimate high street) shop, I could've been forgiven for thinking I'd experienced two completely different frags. What I get now is a weird sweaty accord on the opening and then a non-descript dry down to almost nothing. And then it is nothing - most HB releases have pretty good longevity on me, but Element is gone in no time at all. I wouldn't say Element was horrible or stomach churning, it's just so bland and disappointing (and there is that sweaty opener), which almost makes it worse than something that is quite obviously a stinker.

    05 May, 2010

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    West Indian Lime by Crabtree & Evelyn

    This newer West Indian Limes scent from C&E smells nothing like their sadly discontinued and much lamented East Indian Limes offering from a few years ago. That's not to say the new West Indian release isn't nice, it's just very different. The old East Indian Limes was, if memory serves (it's been a long time), an intense citrus with a dark spicy base that had its feet stuck more in the traditional lime scents of Trumper and Truefitt & Hill. The new West Indian is obviously aimed at a younger modern crowd and as such is lighter and fresher, but that doesn't make it any worse - there's a dominant traditional powdery note which accompanies the citrus all the way through to the dry down and the base seems to be light woods, thankfully preventing that powder from getting too sweet. I personally really like it and it's still quite different in its own way. Logevity is quite good - I still get pleasing wafts of it after 5 or 6 hours - but the sillage is not as good as most C&E frags, East Indian Limes included, presumably because it's lacking the base spices that make most other C&Es (with the exception of Uncharted) project quite well. But otherwise it's a very good fresh lime scent.

    05 May, 2010

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    St James Collection by Taylor of Old Bond Street

    Of the four main traditional English grooming companies (the other three being DR Harris, Trumper and Truefitt & Hill), Taylors of Old Bond Street are the most affordable and are by far the best value for money (DR Harris are at a similar price point, but most of their fragrances lack longevity and silage). St James is TOBS' entry into the world of fresh aquatics - a vivid blue juice with hints of sweetness, soap and, do I detect?, some light and subtle herbs. There are some generic mid to low price moisturisers and aftershave balms available in the UK which have been heavily influenced by the clean St James scent (and no doubt made in the same factory by the same parent company), which goes to show how inoffensive it is. It's not really anything new and it won't knock your socks off, but it's nevertheless a pleasant splash with nothing to really dislike and, for less than £20 (often close to £15) for 100ml, it's a steal. The double bonus for most is that it still comes in a traditional glass shaker bottle, which looks great on the shelf, though I would still prefer a spary. Unfortunately, as with many TOBS frags, this one dries my skin substantially in the winter so I only tend to use it in the summer. Nice stuff, anyway.

    05 May, 2010

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    Acqua di Parma Colonia Intensa by Acqua di Parma

    A wonderful fresh, deep, herby citrus that, on me at least, surprisingly projects like nothing else in my scent armoury. Much longer lasting and more complex than Colonia, richer than Assoluta, I struggle to find the words to describe Intensa's journey - Basenotes has it all going on at the base, but I smell much more complexity in the top and middle notes than the pyramid suggests. Problem is, other than the citrus, I can't easily pick any individual notes out of the opening - that's not a criticism, it's just far too complex for my nose, but I say that in a good way, not in a confused "everything including the kitchen sink" fashion that some releases are guilty of. And that sillage - from a couple of humble sprays do great things emerge and so it is that people 25-30 feet away have been heard, without a hint of sarcasm, to say "what is that amazing smell?" Just brilliant stuff.

    05 May, 2010

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    White Musk for Men by Body Shop

    Very similar to the more expensive Armand Basi Pour Homme (the opening notes in both smell almost identical to me and they share very similar dry downs), White Musk is The Body Shop's premium, but still affordable, male fragrance. At the best of times most musk frags are dodgy beasts - apply too much or have the wrong body chemistry then you risk smelling like a moose took a piss all over you (Jasper Conran Musk immediately springs to mind). Even worse, if they also contain civet (as the really expensive musks/animalics tend to) then the potential is there to smell like that same moose then took a dump all over you, which is the effect civet often has on me. Body Shop's White Musk is probably the safest musk bet for most - floral and slightly sweet like the feminine version, but with added moss and wood notes to tone down the sweetness and make it more masculine, all without sacrificing the lightness of the (admittedly synthetic) musk. About as good and agreeable a musk as I've come across.

    05 May, 2010

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    Black Pepper by Molton Brown

    As a couple of reviews have already noted, the equivalent shower gel is a great heady and intense bouquet of black pepper. Logic dictates that that same pepper blast would follow through to the EDT. Unfortunately, despite a wonderful peppery opening, it's a massive disappointment because it doesn't have the same intensity as the shower gel, it lacks the spicy background and has next to no longevity at all. To my nose, MB's black pepper seems to be a single or double note opener (there is a floral hit with the pepper) drying quickly down to an almost oceanic not too different from MB's other male frag Cool Cologne. Beyond that, there's nothing. This wouldn't necessarily be a problem if this was a £10 EDC that you could pick up from a drugstore. Except it isn't (the price is excessive for a 50ml bottle) and you can't (you can usually only get it from MB shops and merchants, although deals can be found online). Disappointingly mediocre.

    05 May, 2010

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    Pure Cédrat by Azzaro

    Despite being one of the work horses of the industry, Azzaro have an awful lot of naysayers and most of their releases don't manage to attract much more than mediocre reviews. Pure Cedrat is part of a higher end Azzaro trio of traditional frags, which are called (and purport to be) Pure scents, and include vetiver and lavender. As with most Azzaros, they are quite disappointing with the vetiver verging on dreadful. But Pure Cedrat stands alone amongst these and pretty much every other Azzaro frag - it's a beautiful rich woody citrus that holds onto its citrus accord right until the end. Unlike the vetiver and lavender releases, which are far from pure (the lavender seems to have been topped up with a ton of sugar and the vetiver is a weirdly synthetic herbal mess), Pure Cedrat is very much a traditional and simple woody citrus which smells like it should have come out in the 60s, not that it's dated. It's safe, but a pleasurable whiff all round and, despite that Pure title, at a good price.

    05 May, 2010

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    New West for Him by Aramis

    This review is for the recently re-released New West, thankfully no different from the original. An intriguing oceanic from Aramis, a house which seems to excel in unique, quality oceanics. Slightly medicinal (in a good way), this "skin scent" is what most people think oceanics should be - inoffensive but complex, subtle but distinct and not at all like a hundred other releases, which New West isn't. I find it quite difficult to pick out any individual notes, or detect all the layers, but that doesn't really matter to me because what I'm left with is a bright oceanic with a hint of light watery spice that lasts a lot longer than the skin scent title suggests (I'm coincidentally wearing it as I write this review and it's still going strong nearly 5 hours later).

    05 May, 2010

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    Number 3 / Le 3me Homme / The Third Man by Caron

    Contrary to many reviews that have declared 3rd Man as a typical pungent 80s powerhouse, I find it to be very subtle and much closer to a late 60s/early 70s green frag. Its opening and middle notes remind me a LOT of VC&A Tsar (indeed, both frags' respective pyramids share several notes in all three layers), but 3rd Man is slightly sweeter and more powdery. As it approaches its basenotes, 3rd Man goes off on its own tangent as the florals (I get much more jasmine than I do rose in the middle, with the rose coming on strong way at the end of the dry down) and amber come through, and it almost takes on a barbershop style fougere were it not for the slight hint of mustyness, presumably from the musk, which is not unpleasant or unwelcome - I'm rarely a fan of musk scents or distinct musk notes (Body Shop and Avon musk releases are about the only musk frags I accept with open arms), but in here it actually gives 3rd Man an earthy edge which off-sets the sweetness of the amber and vanilla, so it's acting more as a stabiliser than an accord in its own right. My only criticism of 3rd Man is that its longevity and sillage could be better - after 3 hours it's already starting to disappear on me and even others have to come VERY close to me (i.e invading personal space close) before they can smell it - and its general price point isn't great for what it is, although deals can sometimes be found online. I like it a lot, but it's not 100% perfect and, as a similar frag, Tsar is probably better value for money (and Tsar can easily found online for half its usual retail price). But 3rd Man is good stuff nonetheless and if you can find a good deal on a bottle, definitely go for it.

    05 May, 2010

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    JHL by Aramis

    Aramis' "old lady" scent. This review is for the current Gentlemens Collection version. I've not smelt the original so can't really say how close it is, but given that the others I've smelt in the same collection are, to my nose, identical to their vintage counterparts, it's a safe bet that this JHL is exactly the same. It's a strong 80s powerhouse with a ton of bitter florals running all the way through it, some powdery citrus on the opening and some pretty heavy patchouli at the base. To me it smells VERY similar to Devin, but JHL is much harsher, more complex and requires more care on application. As someone with very dry skin which tends to drink frags up, I can carry off most things in most situations, so on me something like Czech & Speake Cuba (nuclear for most people) is very pleasant and subtle. JHL, on the other hand, is one of only two frags (the other being VC&A PH) in my wardrobe that I would not wear at work.

    05 May, 2010

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    Avon Musk for Men by Avon

    This review is for the original version. The current Avon Musk is a reformulation and is not as dark or rich (and is a different colour), but it's still not bad. As with many an Avon release, Musk (the original) was incredibly under-rated and under-appreciated and also spectacular value for money, given the number of true musk ingredients that it was made with (the reformulation is, I think, entirely synthetic). Very animalic with lots of mossy and smoky accords and there's also a distinct powdery addition that follows from top to bottom to avoid that frequent danger of musks - fecal and uriney notes - and, for once, the sweet powder works. But it should be noted that it wasn't a bright and fresh musk like The Body Shop's offering. No, this was very definitely a brooding, masculine musk that punched way above its weight class, but was ignored and forgotten thanks to the Avon name, the plain box and unimaginitive bottle. A classic.

    05 May, 2010

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    Iceberg Twice by Iceberg

    I'm reviewing the feminine Twice because I bought the masculine one, but when I got it home and opened the box, it was the feminine bottle. Despite being a light and sweet floral, a very confident man could probably get away with wearing this too. For me it is a touch too sweet and floral, but it's quite pleasant - it's not cloying and I pick up on some calone notes, which gives it an oceanic background slightly off-setting the sweet and floral, but it's perfectly balanced all the same. I also get some hints of aldehydes, but I might just be imagining that. I wouldn't wear it again myself, but I have to give it the thumbs up anyway because there's nothing to dislike.

    05 May, 2010

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    Aramis Bermuda Tonic by Aramis

    Yet another amazing aquatic from Aramis. Opens with a punchy booze note which slowly dries into a very dry and almost savoury (in a good way) coconut. About two hours into the journey that coconut remains strong and in place but turns slightly sweeter (but not too sweet) as some subtle mint starts to come through. From there, Bermuda Tonic changes very little - it's actually a very simple and fairly linear scent - but that doesn't matter, because it's so good. Sillage and longevity are pretty good considering it's only supposed to be a light skin scent and, with an RRP of less than £30 for 100ml, it remains the cheapest frag in the Aramis range. The one problem with Bermuda Tonic is that, even though it is still available and not discontinued (5 years after it was released - not bad for a limited edition), online prices are starting to get silly (though you can still get it) and almost impossible to find on the high street, where it will be cheaper. If you do happen to stumble on a bottle in a high street shop, then buy it immediately because this will be the next Havana in terms of panic buying.

    23 March, 2010

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    Green Tea and Jasmine by L'Occitane

    L'Occitane frags are usually fairly reliable and rarely is one disappointed with them and I was pleased when I first heard that they were exanding their green tea line. This one with jasmine sounded like it might be the most interesting, given that there are already lots of tea scents with mint accords. Only problem is, after owning it for nearly a year, I'm still not quite sure what I think about it. It opens with that strong and wonderfully fresh tea note as found in the original green tea and then the jasmine, eventually, comes out, albeit quite a ways down in the mix. I get some fruity hints as well but also, and this is where I remain undecided, I'm convinced the whole thing then gives way to what I can only describe as a public toilet after it's had a deep clean, and it's this part of the frag that hangs and hangs and doesn't change. It wavers between pleasant and…well, clean public toilety. Still undecided.

    19 March, 2010

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    Men's Care by Atkinsons

    Shades of several Atkinsons frags of the past - some Royal Briar, a touch of Executive, some I Coloniali Guajaco Wood and a trad EDC type opening from Gold Medal, all blended into a citrusy, woody, gently spicy modern (but not aquatic or ozonic) approach to an old world type scent. Men's Care is largely successful, although the power and longevity of all the aforementioned frags seems to have been left out in favour of a slow, gentle burn. This isn't necessarily a bad thing as, unlike most of those older frags, Men's Care lends itself to being worn in most situations quite comfortably. It also reminds me a lot of Azzaro Pure Cedrat, with less sillage. The biggest props for Men's Care go to the price point - 100ml of EDT which smells like it's made with pretty good ingredients for £6.99. Can't give it anything but a thumbs up.

    19 March, 2010

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    Trafalgar by Truefitt & Hill

    I don't agree with all these comments that say Trafalgar is a weird scent with a cooking herb element. What I get, all the way through, is reminiscent of a classic eau de cologne with a touch of spice, woods and florals - it opens with some distinct and very slightly powdery (in a pleasant way) citrus, then the jasmine comes on strong and then I get the cedar and cardamom all at once. Sounds like a bit of a train wreck, but for me it all plays out wonderfully. Of the four traditional English barber companies, T&H aren't the cheapeast but they probably have the nicest and highest quality frags - each one is very independent from the other and considered on its own merits, unlike Trumper and DR Harris who seem intent on putting a signature note or two in pretty much everything they release (in Trumper's case cloyingly sweet powder, in DR Harris' case a much more pleasant old style citrus). Trafalgar's sillage and longevity is, unfortunately, among the weakest of the T&H range (perhaps not surprising given the relatively minimal pyramid - even taking into account the things not listed on BN, there's still not an awful lot going on for an 80s frag) but paradoxically, if taken as an eau de cologne alternative, it's spectacular - 4 hours at least. Still, it does make it quite expensive, but very worthy all the same, in my opinion.

    19 March, 2010

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    GrigioPerla by La Perla

    One of the best barbershop fougeres on the market, but it's not just another barbershop fougere - its development is rich and complex, its layers very distinct and prominent. It's also unlike pretty much every fougere around. Grigio Perla's opening and middle notes are chock full of green - herbs, fern, light moss, I even get a slight hint of pine, all accompanied by a splash of light citrus in the opening and the barbershop soapy note in the middle - it's like a more refined and higher class Brut, when Brut was still made by Faberge and still a giant among cheapo frags. As it heads towards its base after a couple of hours and long after the citrus goes, the classic fougere gives way to a sweet floral which isn't too feminine and the soap lingers in the background. Sillage and longevity on me are great. Like a previous reviewer said, you still CAN get this despite the discontinued marker. Hopefully it won't be properly discontinued because it's a little masterpiece.

    19 March, 2010

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