Reviews by The_Cologneist

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    The_Cologneist
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    rating


    Very Cool for Men by Tommy Bahama

    I'm glad my original review wasn't published, which gives me an opportunity to explain this a little better. I'm still not a big fan though so I wont get too into depth. The opening is very fresh and lively. The middle turns pretty bad with light animalic and metallic accords as well as chemical accords. It simmers down some when getting into the base, less animalic, more metallic , and interesting. Closest to the skin out of all of the TB fragrances imo. Soapy throughout. Pretty tough nut to crack here, still my least favorite out of all the male fragrances from TB but not horrible. This should be adopted out of the house though, it doesn't really match.

    10th August, 2010

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    Purple Water by Asprey

    I definitley get the Pledge out of this, but it's not so bad. This is by far one the zestiest lemon fragrances I've ever owned, but before the lemon gets so dominant, it reminds me a lot of L'eau d'Issey. Once the zesty lemon dies down it becomes more of a synthetic candy lemon, like lemonheads candies. In comes a big fat orange blossom note as it moves into the middle which is about 15-20 minutes after initial application. The combination of the lemons and orange blossoms go together very smoothly. As if a lemon banged an orange blossom, their offspring would be the beginning of the heart notes of Purple Water. I also get the clear smell of an actual water note in middle, like a very pure spring water. I also get some violet and lavender notes out of the middle, which isn't listed in the note pyramid; but to me, those 2 notes would definitley make a fragrance "purple". As the middle fades, it becomes more soapy and floral before it takes on a vetiver and slightly musky base. I also get a grape accord that weaves in and out. The middle and base are more feminine than the opening. Projection is better in the opening, then anywhere from 4-6 inches from the skin in the middle, then just dies down more and more with time as many fragrances do. Longevity is about 5 hours for me on a good day.

    Not bad at all, Zesty opening with high hopes of a more thorough lemon fragrance; that ends up being a completely different middle and base than the opening. I like the middle and base more and more though as I wear it more, it's actually a thing of beauty. Definitely tricked me though, not what I was expecting.

    Is it worth the price though? This stuff is pretty expensive, usually around 70 bucks for 1.7 oz.but I have seen this online from 30-40. Even if I wasn't on a budget with my fragrances, I wouldn't pay such. It is a good smelling fragrance, that seems pretty high quality, but it just doesn't do enough for me to wanna pay that much. I would buy this for sure though if it were under 20 bucks. It's different than most of the stuff I own, and just brings a smile to my face.

    07th August, 2010

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    Hugo Energise by Hugo Boss

    Maybe one of the worst Hugo's I've tried. That doesn't say much, since most of them are pretty generic and boring. This one is generic, boring, and lacks in longevity and projection. Smells chemical with a very synthetic pepper note. Opens with a little citrus and various spices... stays linear more or less. Doesn't project much, doesn't last more than 2 hours. This being a good thing though. Hugo was good, Hugo Energise is just garbage, don't waste your money.

    06th August, 2010

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    Photo by Lagerfeld

    Photo by KL reminds me of a confused 80's aromatic fougère. The opening just screams lavender, which is a note that I happen to love, so I have no problem with its opening. The lavender dulls shortly after though, and the fragrance becomes more floral and soapy.

    When I say "confused 80's" I mean it's got that 80's vibe, the smell and everything, but it doesn't have that powerhouse projection. It actually sits about 2-4 inches from the skin for most of the time, HOWEVER, the sillage is good. I used to want something that everyone could smell, no matter where I was. Now I prefer something that people can only smell when I walk by them; this is what sillage is. Photo does a good job of rising off the skin while in motion. Not too much though either, which makes this even better for a day at the office.

    Back to the middle notes though, I do pick up on some chemical odors up close, but it also kind of smells like lillys and orange blossoms. These 2 notes I notice to often give off a certain soapy aroma. Floral yes, but also more feminine. At this point though, being in the heart notes, Photo is sitting pretty close to the skin, and still staying well balanced with the lavender, bergamot and spices, it never once jeopardizes its masculinity. The final drydown incorporates some musky tones and and woodsy notes as well as thyme. Thyme being a quite distinctive spice, adds a lot of character to Photo's base. This thyme note reminds me of that in Horizon's. And, overall this fragrance reminds me of a mix of Drakkar Noir, Horizon, Azzaro pH, and a little bit of a barbershop scent.

    Photo is actually a little harder to get now, so I can't quite say if it's worth the money, because I haven't seen the prices. I can say that I purchased an 8ml decant for a low price from somebody, and enjoyed it. If you like those powerhouses, and the common smell that a lot of them bring to the table, you may enjoy Photo; but don't expect all that projection.

    06th August, 2010

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    Apparition Homme by Ungaro

    I get a sweet and soapy pear/papaya opening. Very synthetic too; the opening is decent but once it fades a little it starts to get more chemical in smell.. the result being something that smells like glue for about 25 minutes before the base notes kick in. For me, I picked up on the base notes about 25-30 minutes after having this on my skin.. at which point, I picked up on the woods and vetiver. While at the same time, the base still smells soapy as well. Dare I say, that between the middle notes and base notes of this fragrance, it smells a little bit like Green Irish Tweed.

    Definitely not as bad as others have made it out to be. Longevity is 2-4 hours, and projection is below average, but not entirely a skin scent. However, I feel the way this projects is adequate because it may be too cloying if it projected more. Good scent for the office, granted you like it enough first. To me, this fragrance reminds me of Usher UR. Synthetic fruity opening, soapy, woodsy drydown, but not really very woodsy. This isn't bottle worthy for me though.

    05th August, 2010

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    Signature pour Homme by S.T. Dupont

    I agree with SirSlarty's review on this. It definitely opens up with that incense and inky smell along with some pepper. About 5 minutes into it, I pick up on the basil leaf a little bit, but I get no grapefruit at all. The incense though is extremely recognizable in this stuff, it smells like the cheap powder that flakes off of those incense sticks. The fragrance itself though doesn't at all smell cheap. It's deep, rich, spicy and oriental.

    It does have this certain cultural feel to it. I think this would be something people in India would wear, or it would match with the surroundings. Signature projects nicely throughout, and lasts a good 8 hours. It's pretty basic and linear, after about 20 minutes, those ink accords subside, and we're left with basically an incense/woodsy/spicy fragrance. Later on the spice eventually wears thin too. Overall to me, this stuff is just bleh.. Bland, boring, old fashioned. I'm also not much into incense so that weakens my enthusiasm for this stuff.

    05th August, 2010

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    Minotaure by Paloma Picasso

    As soon as this came out of the decant ant hit my skin, I said to myself.. OH NO.. Versace V/S was running through my mind. The opening of Minotaure is very much similar. Smells like either thick glue or paint chips. Not very appealing. But I didn't just wash this one off immediately, I gave it the benefit of the doubt. After that nasty opening vanishes.. which takes quite a while, as this stuffs opening notes last a good 45 minutes. Or it may just be that it comes out together with the middle notes which is what I'm thinking, since I get more of the geranium and jasmine in the opening than I do the citrus.

    The base notes are what helps it out a little bit, if you can wait around that long. It turns into a decent geranium, jasmine, leather and some sort of woods.. I wouldn't say sandalwood though, and with just a hint of vanilla. I still don't find this to be bottle worthy. Projection is about average and longevity is 6+ hours. I find this stuff to be pretty much unwearable, chemical accords which don't ever go well with me. Glad I tested this one first, or I'd be selling this stuff for sure. Although the base is tolerable, it's still not worthy of even and indifferent rating. It reminds me too much of V/S, which I can say that I hate! This is just maybe one step up and away from it. WARNING -- Try before you buy.

    05th August, 2010

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    Tom Ford Extreme by Tom Ford

    Not one of my favorites from Tom Ford, yet still pretty good. I just finished up an 8ml decant of Tom Ford Extreme, but I still feel kind of left with no result on how I feel. Allow me to explain... Tom Ford Extreme's opening is nothing like others from the private collection, or even Grey Vetiver. It has a very weak opening. It smells like something I've smelled before at first, then seems to get much more fruity. Then it fades and gets spicy, then woodsy. It has a little bit a of everything really, it's pretty complex, and hard to say what we're smelling. It just smells mediocre to me, but it could be a could office scent.

    This is one of the few times where I'm at a loss for words to explain the depth of the notes or accords. Seemingly making this remarkable, but TSE is really nothing special. I'm indifferent.

    04th August, 2010

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    Cool Water Game by Davidoff

    Revising an older and much longer review, I have once again changed my mind about Cool Water Game. This time I am writing it off indefinitely.

    Game opens up with what is supposed to be a watermelon top note, that really just smells like a cheap apple mixed with sour grapefruit and a hint of basil. It eventually turns into a lavender dominated middle, combined with leather or suede (although not listed) and a patchouli base. The quality of the notes separate are pretty bad, maybe except for the patchouli in the end; and the combination of them together are just horrible. It basically smells like apple juice spilled on a leather couch and sat there in the sun, not to be confused with Nicole Miller for men, which is an apple/leather fragrance that actually smells amazing, this smells nothing like that. Game is chemical smelling, smells like make up or nail polish at some point in time. Then again, I have smelled worse. This one is probably the worst from the Cool Water brand though, as most of the Cool Water flankers are very safe and inoffensive. Game is just all over the place, it takes risks, and they do not prevail.

    Save yourself the agony, and just avoid this one all together.. there is no watermelon here. Perhaps with Game, they were going for a mature man's aquatic. It didn't turn out that way.

    25th July, 2010 (Last Edited: 11th March, 2014)

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    Signature Story For Him by Beckham

    This stuff is at my local TJ Maxx.. I had the displeasure of buying it then returning it within the hour. It smelled pretty good in the store. Sort of like a mix of Le Male, Polo Double Black and the lemon notes from Live Jazz. It smelled similar on my skin, but very headache inducing, extremely cloying, and with that nasty papery smell. The smell is a bit exotic and captivating at first, sort of gourmandish yet somewhat sporty and citrus. The closest I can compare it to are Le Male, and Double Black, but with some citrus in the top. Actually, if you have ever tried a Le Male wannabe known as 360 White by Perry Ellis, this is very similar. They both share that beyond cloying opening that is just too over the top and powdery in feel and slightly in smell if you know what I mean. Bleh.. NEXT!

    1.7 oz of Signature Story is going for 16.99 at TJ Maxx, and that price is too much to me. This isn't worth more than 7 bucks at best.. and even if it were that low, I probably wouldn't buy it. While at the same time, Story doesn't compromise the quality ingredients, it does smell very rich and heavy, which at first made me ask myself if i was really sniffing a Coty fragrance.

    Coty.. Beckham..Get your sh*t together already! Try making a fragrance with a quality feeling like this one, but with a pleasing aroma. Dip into some of your Nautica's for advice, at least all from the Voyage lineup smell great. Signature Story is just another sad story.

    23rd July, 2010

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    Adidas Moves by Adidas

    Almost a perfect citrus fragrance. It's cheap, it smells good, it gets compliments, it actually does last long -- if you understand there is more to a fragrance than the projecting top notes. It's complete and versatile. The base notes are light creamy woods.

    One problem, however. There is a sort of onion like smell up close for a period in the opening. Hard to explain, but always there for me. I'd assume (like with numerous other cheapies) I get it from the clash in chemicals in this one. Fortunately, it goes away eventually.

    I have spent many many years with this fragrance in my collection. Gone through a few bottles, and find it to be a great citrus scent. Will always have a bottle in my collection. Sort of a comfort scent for a fresh zesty citrus blast. Also very similar to Versace pH.

    Between this and Curve, imo, the 2 best economical citrus fragrances on the market. Unfortunately, both have a problem with a chemical smell in their notes. So when recommending the perfect citrus fragrance, I can't go with either of these, because they have this flaw.

    Something a little pricier like Bvlgari pH Extreme, or Lalique White are excellent choices for that perfect citrus scent that just hits the spot.

    22nd July, 2010 (Last Edited: 11th April, 2013)

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    Arpège pour Homme by Lanvin

    Whoever made the decision to discontinue this is simply as ass, let's get that out of the way. This ranks up there with Gucci Envy amongst discontinued gems. Why you would cancel stuff like this and keep swill like most of the current designer releases out, is beyond me.

    Now that the rant is out of the way.. let's talk about this one. At first it's a tangy nectarine, orange and citrus blast, that quickly calms down into more of an sweet orange or perhaps mandarin, orange blossom, iris, and vanilla, pink pepper, and nutmeg. Undoubtedly a strong reminiscence to both Dior Homme, and Dior Homme Intense, and although many may say this is the lesser complex when comparing them, I have to disagree; there is a lot going on here. In ways the structure of this fragrance is very similar to Live Jazz, because it's light yet always there, it's very intriguing though not entirely unique. It just gets your nose a sniffing all over. It feels very mature and sophisticated, worth more than what you pay. It also feels unisex as well, but more so as it dries down, when more of the floral notes emerge and it stays near the skin. The base is actually my favorite part, unlike many others, although I wish it would project a little more. It's like oranges and cream with some vanilla and soft florals. The iris note is very prominent from start to finish, it's woodsy but also powdery. I don't much get the sandalwood in the dry down.

    There are some flaws though, none within the fragrance itself. It's quite a beauty. I mean, ya longevity and projection is debatable, but that varies person to person. The bottle's cap though doesn't fit on securely, which is bothersome for many. And, I was one of the unfortunate ones to have an oozing sprayer. It trickles down and all over the place, and I lose a bit of juice when using it. Although the bottle is a beauty, very much a modern and abstract design. I'll just hope for a better sprayer the next time I purchase it. Longevity is a problem on my skin, I can never get more than 4 hours, but I usually get 2 or 3.

    This is slightly similar to Dior Homme, but closer to Paul Smith Man, I feel, because of the tonka bean in the dry down. One of the better designer fragrances, that shouldn't be overlooked.

    If you come across this one at discounters like Ross, TJ Maxx, Marshall's, etc. Don't think, just buy. Buy, buy, buy. If you like iris, you will love this. This is truly a masterpiece.

    19th July, 2010 (Last Edited: 06th November, 2014)

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    Voyage d'Hermès by Hermès

    Quite glad to see this hit this section. Hopefully it won't get bashed so badly. I find VdH to have more great things than flaws, and while it isn't TdH, it's still a well made fragrance that deserves respect.

    First off, the bottle. It's different, but it matches well with the name, and the juice inside. It spins around, but is well constructed, so I don't see it breaking.

    The juice though is what matters.. This reminds me of a stripped down TdH. Lots of cardamom in the opening; as it dries a little bit it smells slightly saltier than the original -- kind of reminds me of the salt around the rim of a margarita along with a little lime.

    Similar to TdH, but instead of the orange and grapefruit in TdH.. replace it with like a light salty lime and tonic. I also get much less cedar out of this one. Doesn't project as much as the original, but is still nice. Longevity is about 6 hours.

    I can't really compare it to anything except for TdH. Those of you who haven't tried anything from Hermes, and may be just getting your feelers out, reading reviews and such, I must recommend checking out the entire Hermes house fragrance by fragrance to understand the structure and feel that all of their fragrances possess.

    I don't consider VdH to be worth the retail price, but I would likely buy it if it were on sale.

    19th July, 2010

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    Live Jazz by Yves Saint Laurent

    Live Jazz opens up with and AMAZINGLY authentic spearmint note. Very natural, smooth, cooling and fresh. A little bit of grapefruit there behind it, but mostly the more unique lemon accord from the lemon peel. It's not as lemony, a bit more natural. Very awesome opening.

    Unfortunately, it's gone within 20 minutes, but the middle notes are quite nice as well. I get a little bit of coriander, still some mint (though far more toned down), a little more of the lemon peel and grapefruit, and some soft floral notes. After a while, the coriander pretty much takes over the fragrance, it stays this way for a while. I wouldn't quite call it the base notes, more of a long phase of coriander that is stuck in between the middle and base notes. The cedarwood is pretty noticeable in the dry down, it's a bit spicy as well, and backed with just 'a hint of vanilla' as very well stated in the note pyramid. The spearmint weaves in and out of this fragrance as well, comes and goes.

    For me, longevity isn't what I want it to be, I get about 5 hours usually, and that's on a good day. It projects nicely for the first 30 minutes or so, but if you apply it to your clothing, you can almost guarantee longer projection with this one.

    For what it's worth though, aside from my small complaints on longevity and projection. This is truly an excellent fragrance, and probably one of the best 'bang for your buck' scents, that you will find. It's unique for the warmer months, Spring and Summer, but can be worn year round for sure.

    We have an herbal garden here outside, and grow spearmint leaves, and I gotta say, Live Jazz's spearmint note is very very natural when comparing it to the actual spearmint. One of the best takes on spearmint in the industry.

    17th July, 2010 (Last Edited: 18th April, 2011)

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    Horizon by Guy Laroche

    Two words: herbal aquatic. This best sums up Horizon. Though I didn't find it to be as different as others did. This barely makes the aquatic category imo, but just calling it herbal would be too vain. In ways it's a powerhouse, because it does have that 80's smell and feel, it does project well, and last long. It's also kind of soapy as well as a chypre.

    To those who get that sort of dark feel from Cool Water as I do, you'll get that from Horizon as well. It reminds me of an herbal Cool Water, not smell wise though as far as the comparison to CW goes, rather feel, and structure. As CW smells and feels a bit dated sometimes, so does Horizon.

    If I had to pick another powerhouse to compare it to it would definitley be Drakkar Noir in its current formulation. They are nearly identical in how they project, sillage as well as longevity. DN may last a little bit longer.

    As for the notes, I pretty much get everything listed in the pyramid, but very little black pepper, maybe even none. My mind wants to tell my nose that the black pepper is there sometimes, but being a pepper fanatic, I just don't get it. The mint is there but it's a very atypical and medicinal mint. Everything blends together pretty smoothly and what we get is a soapy/herbal/aquatic start with a little bit of chypre as it dries down. Hard to categorize and explain, yet not entirely unique, as I stated earlier. Your best bet is to just try this one, or buy it blind if it's cheap enough. If you dislike it after, sell it in the marketplace forum, I guarantee somebody will gladly take it off your hands.

    15th July, 2010 (Last Edited: 05th January, 2011)

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    Cuba Gold by Cuba Paris

    Shamu's review is quite excellent and on the money. This does smell less powdery than Le Male and the vanilla is toned down but still noticeable. I also agree with the "barbershop" vibe, it's there, and so is a little bit of that 80's feel.

    This beats 360 White which is just an overly powdery/cloying Le Male wannabe with everything crammed into the opening. Not a horrible fragrance, but if you're looking for a less expensive Le Male alternative, and are in a bind between 360 White and Cuba Gold, then go with the GOLD! You won't be disappointed, and at 6 or 7 bucks (sometimes even less) for 3.3 ounces, you have little to lose.

    06th July, 2010

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    Tommy by Tommy Hilfiger

    Sort of a spicy aquatic that for some reason smells like ketchup to me sometimes. Pineapple is a note I don't really care for in fragrances unless it's done in a very natural way like smelling fresh pineapples, but I have yet to see this in a fragrance. Take Avatar and Silver Shadow for example, both which I dislike mostly because of that overpowering synthetic pineapple note. Tommy has it as well but it's much more toned down which makes it tolerable.

    One thing about Tommy, is that it is distinctive, there aren't many things that smell like it, and there aren't many that try to. Hummer H2 is a little similar, as is the base of Paris Hilton's Just Me. Sometimes I regret selling my 3.4 oz bottle, but it was mostly sitting there collecting dust. I may look for a smaller bottler soon to reminisce.

    In a nutshell, Tommy is pretty much a spicy aquatic with a very warm feeling to it. It has some interesting notes and is blended together quite remarkably that make it complex and hard to break it down into individual notes. (I can say that I smell cranberry, grapefruit and pineapple.) One of the better ones from the Tommy house indeed, but wearability may be an issue sometimes.

    29th June, 2010

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    Kanøn by Kanon

    Smells like a poopy diaper drenched in baby powder. Old and outdated and a little bit like Zino. Pass!

    25th June, 2010 (Last Edited: 05th July, 2010)

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    Lucky You for Men by Lucky Brand

    I'm quite glad my original review didn't get published yet, leaving me time to do a more intense review of this. Lucky You brings those nasty chemical odors to the table, as only Claiborne can do. I'm not 100% sure the Lucky house is part of Claiborne, but I've been told it is, and judging by the structure and smell of most of their fragrances, it certainly feel this way.

    If you get that harsh chemical note from Curve, you'll get it here, only much more magnified. Strangely enough, I find it tolerable in Lucky You because I enjoy the notes more than I do Curve. both are fairly similar, but Lucky You has a more complex dry down. the opening is a citrus blast, but it's not at all tangy like you get from many citrus fragrances, it's not entirely sweet either which leaves it with this rather natural smell. I'd say if the chemical odor weren't there, I would believe that somebody cut up fresh oranges, lemons, limes, and mandarins and jammed them into the bottle some how. Another plus about this fragrance, especially for being cologne strength is that it projects quite well, and not just during the opening, but for the middle and base as well. The middle becomes a little more floral, and the base becomes more woodsy. Longevity is anywhere from 4-6 hours, but sometimes you may get 8+.

    I just can't get over this chemical smell, I'm beginning to think they put it in there on purpose because it's so dominating here. I find that unlike Curve though, when Lucky You gets applied in moderation, the chemical odors aren't as noticeable. At the end of the day we get another generic citrus fragrance, but slightly more recognizable than others. I do like the bottle very much, but I won't be purchasing this again.

    23rd June, 2010 (Last Edited: 27th July, 2010)

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    Animale Animale for Men by Animale Parfums

    For a while I was wondering if it was actually chocolate that I'm smelling in this stuff. The reason it smells different than most chocolate notes or accords is because of the way it's blended with the moss. It gives it kind of a bitter/moldy smell, but in the best way possibly.

    When you first spray it on, you can smell the chocolate, moss and the vanilla behind it. The vanilla is very creamy and almost smells berry like. The vanilla doesn't get much of the spotlight until the chocolate dies down a bit, and even then.. it's not your typical vanilla.. it's a chocolate and vanilla combination. This along with some nutmeg and what smells like raspberry and rose make for a surprising and unpredictable middle that sort of smell like some kind of chocolate/raspberry truffle. The middle is very nice and long lasting. The base has traces of sandalwood, maybe even oak wood. The moss dies down but is always there until the end.

    With its chocolate and mossy opening, unpredictable and unorthodox middle of chocolate, creamy vanilla, raspberry, rose and nutmeg, and its well done slightly woodsy base, Animale Animale is a very nice one for the price. While it is different, it isn't quite unique. It resembles Rochas Man and A*Men in many ways, but it does have its own take on a gourmand. Projection is nice, and longevity is decent. Unlike many.. I get about 4-6 hours with this most of the time, but I have gotten up to 10 before, so it is temperamental.

    Is it worth the price? Hells ya. Absolutely; and for something different, I'd say it's a perfectly safe blind buy. Just make sure you like the chocolate, vanilla and moss, as those are the most noticeable notes. Being that you can get a 1.7 oz bottle for about 12 bucks, and a 3.3 for under 20, you can't go wrong. I think this stuff is even worth the retail prices between 35-55 bucks. Reason being.. it has great notes, it's appealing to most, it's a little different, and best of all (at least to me) it has no nasty chemical odors. It does smell synthetic, but not as entirely as many others in its genre. B+ for Animale Animale!

    23rd June, 2010

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    Stetson Fresh by Stetson

    Stetson Fresh is a bit of a late bloomer in its category of fragrances. Since this was released in 2008, and falls very much along of the lines on CK One and Chrome, it's a little bit past its time. Fresh is a fitting name though, this stuff falls dead center between Curve Chill and CK One. CK One has too much citrus, and Chill is too soapy. Fresh is right in the middle.

    As for the factors about the fragrance itself, well.. its projection is about average, maybe a little above. It starts off with more citrus, then gets soapier. I much prefer the opening over the drydown as the drydown reminds me of Chrome which is a fragrance I cannot stand.

    I got .75 oz spray for under 3 bucks on clearance, and at that price, it's worth it. As for retail, ehh.. I think the retail price of the .75 oz is somewhere around 10-12 bucks, which isn't worth it. It may have good projection, but the sillage isn't as good, and the longevity isn't great either. For one to love this stuff, I'd say you'd have to love Chrome, Chill, Jordan (blue bottle) and CK One. I despise both Jordan and Chrome; while Chill and One are just okay to me. Stetson Fresh is also just okay.

    16th June, 2010

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    UR for Men by Usher

    Not bad. Has a nice peachy opening, synthetic smelling but not chemical or harsh. Kind of reminds me of Mambo in the opening, but Mambo is so chemical smelling that it makes me sick to my stomach.

    I had a .5 oz bottle which I just finished, so I'm pretty confident with my results for longevity. I get no more than 4 hours tops, but usually it's around the 2 hour mark. Projection is below average in the beginning and close to the skin shortly thereafter. It starts off peachy and turns into more of a slightly floral, slightly fruity, and slightly woodsy very very subtle fragrance with just a hint of vanilla.

    Is it worth it? A bottle of UR in Macy's is gonna run you about 65 bucks, you'd have to be a mad man to pay such. I wouldn't pay more than 20 bucks for a 3.4 and that's a stretch. That's if you really like the juice. This stuff won't turn heads, and you may not even get any compliments at all because of its poor projection which can go unnoticed. What UR is, is a safe, clean, easy and versatile scent, good for the less enthusiastic buyer, who doesn't have such high expectations from a fragrance. Overall I'd give this a D+

    12th June, 2010 (Last Edited: 26th June, 2010)

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    Usher for Men by Usher

    Kind of a tough nut to crack in means of smell. What am I smelling exactly? Well, at least it smells good.

    What I get out of this that are noticeable are lavender, violet, suede and some fruits. Mostly dominated by a sweet and synthetic lavender opening accompanied by a lot of violet as well.. blended together nicely. I think the violet may actually be more in the top notes along with some sweet fruits while the middle is more lavender and suede. Though a pretty linear fragrance until the base which turns more woodsy, but becomes very soft and sort of drifts away from the opening and middle. Still not bad. Without looking at a note pyramid, I can confidentially say that you're going to smell lavender and suede for sure, these are the legs of Usher, this is what holds it up. Longevity it actually not bad, I usually get 6 hours. Though in humidity this will diminish very quickly. Projection is nice during the opening notes, as with most fragrances that project the most in the opening. The projection on this stays much closer in after about 20 or 30 mins, but it still doesn't become a skin scent until the base. The base is boring but not horrible, it seems to be a very faded lavender and suede accompanied with some lighter woodsy notes. Most notably sandalwood. If you're looking for something unique though, you might as well turn around now, Usher is quite generic, but not entirely boring. Safe, inexpensive, and most importantly smells nice. As for comparisons.. I think it smells like a mix of a far less powerful Drakkar Noir and Guess Suede, being about 75% Guess Suede. But, with a much more toned down suede smell.

    Is it worth the price? Well, I wouldn't pay retail for this. You can find this online in the bigger sized bottle for under 25 bucks on a lot of sites. I think it's worth about that. I wouldn't pay more than 30 though. The longevity is good, the projection is nice, and the fragrance smells good, plus it's very safe and versatile. But make sure you like it enough first even if you're investing 20 or 30 bucks in it. If you end up not liking it, that's money that could have gone toward another fragrance. I say this because I find that when I wear this stuff more regularly I get quite bored of it.

    12th June, 2010 (Last Edited: 01st August, 2010)

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    Zino Davidoff by Davidoff

    Ya ever hear someone say "I tried to like this"? This be the situation with Zino for me. I didn't try once, I tried 5 times. I just don't see how anybody can tolerate this, nonetheless love it. It is powerful, so in the bottle it smells just okay, but once it hits my skin, it's all downhill. I sprayed it on some test strips as well to see if it was just my skin chemistry that disliked Zino and made it stink so bad, but the test strip seem to feel the same way, and so did my bro and mom when I asked them.

    I heard it was discontinued so I figured I'd grab a bottle when I saw it on sale (blind buy). Fortunately it was about 14 bucks for 1 oz, and thank god I don't have more than an oz.

    The smell itself to me smells like the rottenest fruits, and garbage. This is all I can think of, not to mention it projects significantly, so not only will you smell like a trash can full of old plums and apples, but so will everyone else around you. After about 30-45 mins it does settle down and become okay, but it's not worth the wait to me, BARF!

    10th June, 2010

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    Kanøn Norwegian Wood by Kanon

    I got a 3.3 oz bottle of this stuff @ Ross for 6.99 a couple days ago, and I gotta admit... it's good stuff. Me.. I'm a HUGEEEE sandalwood fan, and those of us who love sandalwood may be particularly picky on how it smells. I like my sandalwood to smell very natural and sweet. Tam Dao is a great example of what sandalwood in a frag should be to me. Kanon NW does a fantastic job on this one. I've seen Kanon online for low prices, but thought it was just some cheap crap, I bought this completely blind, knowing nothing about the house, the notes, or reading any reviews on here. I guess it's a new fragrance (2010). At first spray, all I can think of is Tam Dao, and a few weeks ago I was asking for a cheap Tam Dao alternative in the forums. My only complaint is that longevity is really bad. I get like 2-3 hours tops. It's a pretty linear scent that starts off like sweet sandalwood with a natural feeling and smell, then becomes a little more of a synthetic smelling sweet sandalwood and smells a little bit soapy. For the most part though, its a sandalwood and cedar fragrance. A hell of a deal @ 6.99 and an acceptable Tam Dao alternative.

    30th May, 2010

    rating


    Antonio by Antonio Banderas

    Basically like a tangy rose and rosewood combination. Sweet while simultaneously pretty tangy; usually I dislike tangy fragrances, but Antonio's sweetness levels it out. This doesn't really smell like anything else that I've tried, so it gets an A for being original.

    It get's an A+ in the longevity department as well, as it lasts for 12+ hours on my skin. Projection and sillage are above average as well. My only complaint is that it smells kind of feminine, so it makes it less wearable for myself. I'm the type of guy who usually has to wear a fragrance marketed for men that only smells like it was marketed for men. Although there are always exceptions. This is one of those fragrances that I like less and less as I wear it more and more. A must smell though for anybody.

    29th May, 2010 (Last Edited: 18th November, 2010)

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    H2 by Hummer

    Not as bad as everyone makes it out to be. It's a bit of an aquatic with a spicy twist to it. Notes are hard to separate and pull apart due to its syntheticness, but it doesn't smell horrible. As it dries it becomes more floral and soapy and smells completely different from its opening. Then it changes once again into something completely different (and my favorite part of the fragrance) as it becomes a peppery/leather/grassy mix with a little vanilla -- rich, yet very soft and subtle. There is a metallic note or accord in the opening but it's not nearly as bad as Chrome or Jordan (both of which I hate)

    Surprisingly a complex fragrance, perhaps the reason people dislike it is because they can't understand it as it takes twists and turns. All of its phases are different from the next and astonishingly remind me of 3 totally different fragrances. I bought this blind and I'm gonna try and return it only because I don't see any use for it in my collection. I can use the 14.99 I spent towards something better I think. All in all though, it's not a bad fragrance.. more something for somebody who just wants one fragrance to make their signature.

    Is it worth retail? God no, it's barely worth 14.99 for 2.5 oz like I paid. To me it's worth 5 bucks for 2.5 oz. but that's subjected to my personal feelings towards it and how it fits into my collection. Looking at it in a less selfish way -- I think 15 bucks for 2.5 oz of H2 is a good price.

    24th May, 2010

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    Rykiel Man by Sonia Rykiel

    Today I went to my side shelf for my SOTD, I went with something called Rykiel Man. This is, hands down the most unique fresh fragrance I've ever smelled. EVER. I cannot break this fragrance down. The closest I can say is that it smells like limes, soda, rosewood, laundry detergent, and a little tea. It's not soapy, there's no spices, it's not oriental, but it is very green and fresh. I don't really care for it, but it is very very intriguing, in fact, I've never been so intrigued with any fragrance, ever. This must be smelled.

    22nd May, 2010 (Last Edited: 13th October, 2010)

    rating


    Cuba Black by Cuba Paris

    I'm leaning more towards a thumbs down with this one. Then again, as long as I don't have to smell it so often, it is alright. If I had to smell this every day, I'd get dizzy a lot and pass out. It has a very cloying opening that seems to capture the middle and base of ApH and then kick it up 80 notches. This doesn't smell "black", rather overly cloying, sweet, and ultra synthetic.. while at the same time it doesn't smell cheap, so kudos to that.

    I paid about 8 bucks for 3.3 oz of this, bought it completely blind based on nothing but positive reviews at the time, that's about to change though, because Cuba Black isn't that good. Definitely not worth my stamp of approval. Its title is misleading, as are some of these reviews. No disrespect to the reviewers though, but I feel that the next blind buyer should be aware. As for this staying close to the skin. ARE YOU INSANE!? This stuff lights up a room just a couple sprays. It actually makes ApH look weak.

    So I'd say if you like cloying, sweet, synthetic smells trying so desperately to mimic 80's powerhouses then go for it here. This can be a headache in a bottle indeed, and can project into next year. I like projection, but not when I dislike the scent for the most part to begin with.

    Is it worth the dough? Well, if all of the above appeals to you, then yes. But for less than twice the price you could get about half the amount of ApH; smell really nice, not offend anyone, and not be afraid to tell people what you're wearing either :)

    20th May, 2010 (Last Edited: 13th July, 2010)

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    Virgilio by Diptyque

    Apparently this has been discontinued. Virgilio reminds me of Zirh Corduroy; in fact they smell extremely alike in their openings. I did the test with one on each arm prior to concluding this. Virgilio surpasses Corduroy in terms of longevity, but it is a skin scent for the most part. It projects about 2 inches off the skin when it's opening/beginning of middle. It stays much closer through most of the middle and the dry down, but has about average sillage.

    What I actually get from Virgilio is like a greenish and very herbal concoction with some cinnamon.. maybe clove as well; it develops more into a light powdery vanilla. It doesn't project very well and doesn't have that same unique structure that Tam Dao and Philosykos have. It seems kind of expired, both smell and feeling wise. It's not by any means a bad smell though.

    Is it worth it? Well.. considering this is now discontinued (going by what the Diptyque rep told me, as well as other sources) if you do find it, you may be springing for more than the usual prices, maybe even more than retail. To me.. Corduroy surpasses this, and is like a 20th of the price. However there are noticeable differences -- they may seem/feel like clones.. but my philosophy as it pertains to the world of fragrances is that "no two fragrances are identical". Virgilio is a less vibrant version of Corduroy but ONLY in the first 20 minutes or so are they really reminiscent of each other. Overall Virgilio being an EDT/cologne with the same alcohol concentration of any other EDT isn't even close to being worth 150-200 bucks.

    17th May, 2010

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