Reviews by The_Cologneist

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    The_Cologneist
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    rating


    Polo Double Black by Ralph Lauren

    Mango, coffee, and a strange fuzzy feeling. Polo Double Black is a warm and fairly exotic fragrance. Quite different from the original Black, as well as the rest of the Polo line; furthermore, as well as the rest of everything on the market. It's mostly a sweet fragrance, but I wouldn't call it a gourmand, it does have a little spice from the pepper and cardamom. Two things that prevent this fragrance from being perfect imo.. 1. It has an accord that reminds me of crayons, I get this smell from CK Obsession Night, and Realities Graphite Blue. And 2, the longevity sucks.. I get 4 hours at best.

    I do give it an A- or B+ for being unique, not quite A+ material, it's no Fahrenheit.. It gets a C- or a D+ in terms of longevity. Projection actually isn't too bad, when you consider its lifespan.. 4 hours, it projects well for the first 2, which is half of the fragrance life.. I'd give it a B- in projection, with all things considered. Overall, I believe it's one of the best from the rather boring RL house.. I very much enjoy the original Polo and Modern Reserve -- both of which are solid fragrances. Double Black is almost there, a parfum version for men would be outstanding, but we all know a low budget house like RL will NEVER make such. Anyways, all babbling aside.. Double Black is a fairly solid sweet/spicy oriental/exotic fragrance, not quite comparable to anything in the designer bracket. This fragrance will only work in Fall/Winter though. Overall grade: B-

    19 February, 2011

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    Nautica Blue by Nautica

    I have had Nautica Blue for quite a while, but haven't worn it much; I'm not a big aquatic fan. However, Nautica Blue, is done well. Not to be confused with the original Nautica, which is now known as Nautica Classic; this comes in the same bottle, only the juice is more of a light blue with an aqua tint to it. Nautica Blue (this one) is the more aquatic of the 2 though.

    The opening to Nautica Blue is both fruity and aquatic, and hits me with some interesting notes. I get a lot of peach and some green grape, it's also quite creamy. As it dries, the traditional aquatic feel sets in, only it's still far more unique than your typical Acqua di Gio's. The peach note manages to stay prominent, as it blends with a floral heart, and calone note. The base brings in some sandalwood and musk, and yes.. the peach is still there. Only now, it's far more weak, and synthetic smelling, which makes it less recognizable as the smell of peaches, but I do detect it to the end. In this fragrance's case, the end is anywhere from 6-8 hours later, as longevity is quite good. Especially considering its low price, and its very overlooked house.

    15-20 years ago, you could only buy the Nautica fragrances in departments stores, and nothing, NOTHING, would have a set-in-stone price of 15 bucks, as Nautica Blue often has at discounters. Now with all the niche fragrances and more expensive designer houses controlling the fragrance market, houses like Nautica, CK, Tommy, etc. have been pushed back, and frowned upon. Let me tell ya though, as a long time fragrance fanatic, and supporter of these brands, they have put out some excellent overlooked fragrances, that I've had the privilege of trying/owning. Nautica Blue is no exception.

    10th February, 2011

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    Urban Musk by Tom Ford

    The problem with the musk note in niche brands is that it's legit musk. Legit musk, smells like sh*t. When I say legit, I mean not as synthetic smelling, not as chemically induced. Musk in a more natural way. You may ask yourself, "who wants to smell like poo?". Well, natural musks in fragrances are rather upper class. Now, I'm not saying that - if you wear Jovan Musk, you're trailer trash.. no; wear what you like - of course! I'm saying that I associate the more natural musks with the more affluent crowd, kings, queens, and royalty. This is just my opinion though.

    Now.. with all that said, let's talk about Urban Musk. Well.. myself, not being a big musk fan, you can imagine me bashing this fragrance. However, the musk in the opening of Urban Musk, although very raw and natural smelling, is toned down. Ya, it still smells like poo.. but hang in there a little while. 10,20,30 minutes tops, and you'll see this fragrance transform into a different smokey blend, with some sort of deep dark fruit note(s), amber, some spices (very subdued), and a little something sweet.. but I can't quite pinpoint it. The overall dry down though is very very smokey, I'm talking like Tea for Two smokey. It's not bad, but not really my flavor.

    On the upside of things, it lasts forever, but I didn't get much projection.. this could also be because I was expecting a natural musk smell, which isn't my thing, so I feared it would project, and I did a rather small application every time I wore this. Now knowing more about it, I may wear this fully soon, and revise this part of the review if needed.

    06 February, 2011

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    Bogart pour Homme by Jacques Bogart

    Not too shabby, and rather different from a lot in its price bracket. Bogart pH is basically a cherry bomb. This I knew prior to trying it, but with a name like Bogart, I was expecting a much darker cherry with some deeper notes. Instead I get a very light cherry accord with a powdery undertone for the most part. Light cherry yes, but still big on projection.

    The first 5 minutes or so I get a nice unisex cherry note, it's quite candy-like and synthetic. After that, it becomes more feminine imo, as it takes on a powdery theme, the cherry lightens up and incorporates some floral notes and some kind of nougat note. The heart lasts a good 4 hours before the base sets in. The base is my favorite part, as it takes on more of a dark cherry/black cherry theme, with a little vanilla and some spice. It's very subtle at this point unfortunately, but damn, it's nice. I might just buy a bottle because I love the base so much. The base then carries on for an additional 4 hours or more, bringing the overall longevity to anywhere from 8-10 hours usually. I get pretty good projection for the first 4 hours.

    People say cherry pipe tobacco.. I just don't see this. I get no tobacco whatsoever from this, sadly, I would love me a cheapy cherry pipe tobacco, but you won't get that here. The overall feel of this fragrance is a solid cherry fragrance with "masculine florals"; unfortunately these florals are anything but masculine to me in the heart of the fragrance, where this fragrance shines its brightest. If I could have things my way, I'd pull out the florals and powdery accords (which could be from the floral notes) and move the base of this up to the heart.. that would make for a 5 star cherry bomb! Not bad though, but not worth more than 3 stars or a thumbs up.

    29 January, 2011

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    El Attarine by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    To my nose, powdery, synthetic, very feminine, fruity, floral, with a make-up accord. Smells decent, but not something I can see myself wearing.

    26 January, 2011

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    Chêne by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    A deep herbal, smokey, amber, incense, woods, and lots of cedar. What more could a man ask for?

    26 January, 2011

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    Konvict Homme by Akon

    I too picked this up at Ross for 10 or 12 bucks. The bottle is made very poorly, but the concept is awesome, and it's a sweet piece in any collection.

    What matters though is the juice. I'm not gonna sugar coat this, but to my nose, this basically smells like some sort of cleaning solution. Longevity and projection are both below average too. I pretty much get bergamot and sandalwood both in the opening together.. it stays this way for about 30 minutes before a cedar note creeps in; it also has a wet/watery feel throughout. It stays on my skin no longer than 3-4 hours. This fragrance is very linear and reminds me of Live Jazz or Bvlgari Aqva Marine a little.

    To me.. worth the money just for the bottle, plus I often wear this to the pool. But, in any other sense, this stuff is a joke.

    21st January, 2011

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    Orange Sanguine by Atelier Cologne

    If this opening is synthetic, then the perfumer behind this did one hell of a job executing such an amazing natural smelling citrus fragrance.. well at least in the opening.

    The opening of Orange Sanguine is hands down the best orange fragrance that I've come across, meaning well over 1000 fragrances. The opening of this = you pick a Florida orange, cut it open, shove your nose right up in it. This is what you get here. The drawback is when you smell it too close up, it will sting the nostrils and/or even make your eyes water because of the citric acid. Unfortunately, the opening only lasts for about 15-30 minutes for me, before it turns into the typical citrus heart and base that I've gotten from every fragrance from their house that I've tried.. except for Bois Blonds which was a little more unique with vetiver in the base. This seems to me Atelier's signature that they are going for.. long lasting citrus bases. While others have complained about the longevity, particularly on this one.. I have worn this 5 times now, and each time it lasted at least 20 hours on my skin. It just keeps freakin' going.

    20th January, 2011

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    Amber Absolute by Tom Ford

    A great example of amber in almost its natural form. The opening is short lasting, a quick burst of sweet amber and spicy frankincense. The sweetness quickly fades off, and it turns into what mostly smells like beeswax to my nose. My enthusiasm is stunned here, I'm disappointed. This lasts for a good 2 hours before it takes on the amber again, only this time it's rich and smoky. It fades into a creamy vanilla/amber with a little spice before the final base which appears to be just amber. Certain parts of this fragrance I love, but other parts I despise.

    Longevity is excellent, as one would expect.. 12+ hours easily. Projection is above average for the first 4-6 hours. The very first 10 minutes has HUGE projection, more so than Tobacco Vanille. I've never really been much of an amber fan, Amber Absolute definitely shows the more natural take on amber, personally, I prefer the simple, sweet synthetic stuff that's in the bases of many of our modern fragrances. I'll have to pass on this one.

    19 January, 2011

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    Lalique White by Lalique

    First time I tried this, nothing stood out to me, it smelled like a cheap citrus. The next time though, everything changed. I get a prominent white pepper, violet, citrus, vetiver and cardamom. The white pepper, vetiver and citrus blast off in the opening, mostly dominated by the white pepper. As it dries a little bit, the violet note really shines. While in the stage of violet domination, it takes a turn for the green side. I believe this greenness may be coming from the tamarind which plays an interesting role as a fragrance note. It's sweet, dry, earthy, and somewhat bland.. for a fruit it doesn't smell too fruity. Overall the middle is dominated by violets, tamarind, and a hint of cardamom. The copious amounts of white pepper are now gone, unfortunately to my disappointment, I am a big white pepper fan.. and the opening of this was very lively. Throughout the middle it begins to turn a bit musky, and settles down into the base with crisp vetiver, musk, and woods. On a side note, I get whiffs of lemon in the middle, and vetiver throughout.. the vetiver comes and goes. I can't exactly pinpoint where these notes start or finish, because they seem to change every time.

    For me, longevity ranges from 4-8 hours depending on the day, weather, time I wear it, season, humidity etc. Projection is about average on my skin, as with most fragrances, more so in the opening. I think Lalique "Green" would have been the correct name for this one, as it's a very fresh green fragrance.. I guess they gave it the name White, because of the dominating white pepper in the opening. Although I do get the "whiteness" the more it dries down, it reminds me of fresh linens. Regardless of the name, this is a great fragrance, with a lively opening and a beautiful dry down. If ya see a sample of this, or pass by it in a store, definitely give this guy a try.

    13 January, 2011

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    Andy Warhol Montauk by Bond No. 9

    Well I guess I'll be the first to review this, since Col's review is more of a rant.

    I'm rather new to Bond fragrances, and thus far, unimpressed. Nothing has really blown my mind, and for the most part I've been disappointed. This one is no exception. I'm looking at the note pyramid and literally scratching my head here.

    Basically what I get get is a citrus top, smells a little cheap since the alcohol comes through for the first minute or so. What's cool is you can smell your hand or arm and literally smell it developing before you, it will turn sweeter. I then get the blueberry note along with some sweet florals, but there is no honeysuckle to my nose. The final dry down is basically a linear version of the middle, floral, lightly sweet, and very faint; it goes on like this for up to 8 hours.

    12 January, 2011

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    Mémoire d'Homme by Nina Ricci

    Whoa, this one is different indeed. The opening to my nose is some sort of spicy citrus concoction, it's different, and very warm.. so warm it actually heats up the skin; it smells a little like the broth from minestrone soup as well. As if the opening weren't strange enough already, the middle takes a turn for the I'm not sure.. it starts to smell like asphalt, rubber and licorice. Once that mellows out, I get a very smokey incense and rubber mostly. After having endured the most interesting part of the fragrance, it suddenly becomes a bit sweet, vanilla or possibly tonka bean, and slightly powdery. The base then invokes some woods, I definitely get the cedar here.

    Overall it makes for an interesting fragrance that takes the niche risk to the max. If ya like scents like Fahrenheit, or even Narcisco Rodriguez, you may wanna give this one a try. It's pretty different, and a hit or miss more or less. Love it or hate it, honestly, I haven't made my mind up. But, I surely appreciate it.

    10th January, 2011

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    Fath Pour l'Homme by Jacques Fath

    Vanilla, lavender, mint, amber, synthetic smelling, ultra boring, super sweet top, with a very faint musky, floral and woodsy dry down. The top smells a little like grapes as well. The dry down lasts 10+ hours on my skin, but the opening and middle (the best parts) last under an hour. You can tell that everything was put into the top notes here. I'd rather get something with better quality, but this surly does smell nice.

    10th January, 2011

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    Chinatown by Bond No. 9

    I think Chinatown is to Bond no. 9, what Black Orchid is to Tom Ford. The opening just screams flamboyancy to me. It has a bit of that "make-up" smell. The opening is a quick blast of peaches and peach blossom to my nose, it sure is peachy. This quickly fades into a vanilla and a creamy coconut, with the slightest sour spice, I suspect this may be tomato leaf. Surrounding this are various floral notes, like a bouquet of flowers. I start to pick up on patchouli about 20 minutes into the frag, and some subtle woods in the end.

    Projection and longevity both exceed expectations. Overall though, this is a floral fragrance, with some interesting fruits. Take its pink bottle as a hint, this fragrance is feminine. Nice, and a little less boring, but still not for me. I do not recommend this for a man.

    09 January, 2011

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    Bois Blonds by Atelier Cologne

    Easily once of the best citrus fragrances I've ever come across.. in terms of smell and quality. Firstly.. there's so much perfume oil in these fragrances that whenever it's on my skin my skin sticks to anything it touches. Very potent, and in the form of citrus! Wow, I never thought I would find a citrus fragrance that could last so long and be as strong in the 8th hour as it is in the first.

    The smell itself in Bois Blonds, is nothing extraordinary, but the quality is beyond extraordinary. I cannot stress how high quality these fragrances are. Do not let the word "cologne" in the titles mislead you, they simply do this for marketing. This is at least EDP strength, maybe even more. 20% fragrance oils is what this one is advertised as, but a few within the company have told me, the fragrance concentration is 30%.

    Anyways, onto the smell. The opening, I get a burst of neroli, lemon grass, and the orange flower. The lemon grass note is very similar to vetiver but more lemony. As it dries a little, the pink pepper really comes out and shines, and a very good take on pink pepper. Eventually the pepper dies down and makes its way to the back, and the citrus comes back to the front. The base notes incorporate the vetiver and a little musk. The vetiver is nice, the same type of vetiver in Encre Noire or Sycomore, minus the smokiness, rather the same flavor, with that oily lemon thing going on; very bright citrusy vetiver. The musk and woods are there, but subdued. The woods really don't kick in until way later, when the vetiver becomes less vibrant, and more earthy. I don't really know what 'blond woods' are, but the woodsy notes that I do get from this, blend perfectly with the citrus, they never overpower the citrus or the vetiver. But, they're never really here to stay, they come and go.

    Again, longevity is great, and what really pleases me is the projection. Constantly from beginning to end, it projects. It's also very aromatic and leaves a fantastic sillage trail. I think the reason I get the projection all the way to the 8+ hour mark is because of the vetiver base, and this being a high grade of vetiver. Vetiver itself is one of the most aromatic fragrant ingredients. I have gotten 16+ hours total longevity though, with great projection for 8 hours.

    If anyone is looking for a high quality, long lasting citrus, look not further. I am often quite opposed to spending money on the niche fragrances, but I think this one is worth every cent. Approved!

    08 January, 2011 (Last Edited: 12 January, 2011)

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    Himalaya by Creed

    The opening of Himalaya is a burst of alcohol, unfortunately, but once it dries a little, it becomes a rich and fresh masculine floral. The projection is good (much better than SMW) and longevity is pretty good as well.. on my skin, 8-12 hours, sometimes more. Like SMW, Himalaya is very refined, it's hard to pick apart the notes. But, as with most Creed's that I've tried or owned, there's that metallic accord, but it's very dull in this one.

    The opening is a bright fresh grapefruit and bergamot, with a little bit of spice, and a light floral background. As it dries a little, the citrus comes out a little more, I get like a fresh cut open orange, or the smell of orange juice in the background blending in with everything else that I'm smelling that I can't quite determine. Fresh, floral, soapy, citrus, a little spice, and a little green. So refined, yet such a simple overall blended smell. It basically smells like citrus and florals with a drop of musk to make it a little more aromatic.

    As it dries it becomes more metallic again, I also get some lavender. Once this fades, the final dry down into the base is a bit generic, reminds me of something that I can't quite put my finger on. The ambergris keeps it going on the skin for a while but very close to the skin.

    Although the smell is good, it doesn't constitute a buy in my book. It was fun to sample and mess around with, but it's definitely not bottle worthy, especially at these prices. A cheaper alternative would be something like Givenchy Blue Label, or Dunhill Pure - both of which remind me of this.

    Himalaya definitely isn't groundbreaking.

    08 January, 2011

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    Vanille Patchouli by Molinard

    A very nice, and very simple blend of vanilla and patchouli with a hint of lavender. Those who wanna know what patchouli smells like, sample this one and wait for the mid notes to dry down.

    As far as my experience with this fragrance goes. It opens up with a very creamy vanilla, with good projection.. after a little while I get a little patchouli and some lavender, but still mostly vanilla. 4 hours in, and the patchouli takes center stage, and a very good patchouli at that. 8 hours in, and the patchouli is gone and the vanilla comes back, but very subtle and close to the skin. Both the patchouli and vanilla are always there at all times, but at certain points one may be more dominant than the other.

    Just a simple, safe, beauty. Hey sometimes, I just want to wear something easy! This guy fits the description, easy with the niche appeal going on. I'll probably be getting a bottle of this in the future. Definitely not feminine, very unisex.

    Edit: Longevity is also excellent, I get 12+ hours easily.

    08 January, 2011

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    Vanille Absolument / Havana Vanille by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    Firstly, this fragrance has been changed to the name "Vanille Absolument". Secondly, the only big plus for me was longevity, as I got about 12 hours or more, which is nice for a vanilla. By the 12 hour point, as you could imagine, it was hard to sniff out, and very close to the skin. Projection was good in the first 2 hours, but after that, not so much.

    Now onto the juice itself.. Well.. Initial reaction: mmm creamy vanilla, nice! Two minutes later: WTF is that incense!? Now.. knowing me.. I'm not much of an incense fan. I did like the incense in Timbuktu, which I found to be spicy and different. The incense in this one is a high quality incense.

    What I don't get is what the other reviewers have gotten out of this, nor do I get most of what's in the pyramid. Here's my pyramid: top notes of vanilla, white musk; mid notes of incense, rum; base of more vanilla. Somewhere in there I pick up on the tonka bean, just a little.. but it's hard to detect since this is primarily dominated by vanilla. But, if I had to pick the second dominator in this, it would be the unlisted incense.

    In the opening I get a naturally sweetened cream vanilla, then the incense creeps in about 5 minutes later. It's actually a really good incense, but again incense in general is not something that makes my nose too happy. As this dries more, the rum starts to come out, and it's a very well done take on rum. Excellent there. While the rum and incense seem to be competing for 2nd place, the vanilla is clearly leading in 1st, and all the way into end. The base. The base is a dry vanilla with a little bit of powder there to give it some life. Arguably still creamy, but I think it's more powdery in the base than creamy.

    Overall, I'm left with a fairly different, long last vanilla/incense fragrance. I've said this before, that my real niche fragrance journey is going full force this year, and out of everything that I've tried on the niche side of things, I have yet to come across ad vanilla and incense dominated blend, so +1 to that.. this one required a little more attention. Overall though, this just isn't for me; and of course, like any other L'Artisan, you can expect to be paying a lot.

    06 January, 2011 (Last Edited: 07 January, 2011)

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    L'Eau de L'Artisan by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    The moment I put this on my skin I said to myself WOW. Wow for 2 reasons.. 1 because it smells extremely similar to a cheapy that I own called Eau Maximum by Nickel. And, 2 because it doesn't strike me as a L'Artisan scent.

    To simplify this one.. It smells like Eau Maximum with Hani Mori's (edt) lemon top note. If ya know H.M., then you know the lemon drop top note I'm referring to.

    Is L'Eau de "'Artisan enjoyable? Most definitely.. one of the better niche fresh fragrances easily, but it's not unique to my nose, and isn't worth the price at all. The juice inside the bottle is worth 30 bucks at best.. not because it smells cheap, because it doesn't really, but because I as a designer and cheapy specialist know where to find similar scents, and I personally have no need for this in my arsenal.

    But before I finish up and tell you folks this useless information, let me dissect L'Eau de L'Artisan a little bit. What I get is a big lemony opening, the reminded me of the lemon note found in H.M. EDT, as it dries a little bit it becomes slightly herbal, with a sweet basil note mixing in with the lemon, but the lemon still dominates the opening. The lemon in this is quite candy-like, making it seem very synthetic. As it dries, it just gets greener, slightly mossy, and a hay note in the end, but the lemon is the star player here.

    05 January, 2011

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    Tea for Two by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    And so it shows.. there's a reason why this one is the most talked about from this house.. it is amazing. Especially if you're a smoker or ex smoker, because this really captures everything. From the tobacco, to the ash tray, to the hookah pipe, to the secondhand smoke, and everything in between, this ladies and gentleman is the tobacco experience. In fact "The Tobacco Experience" would be a far better name than "Tea for Two". I mostly get tobacco, but I certainly pick up on the tea as well. And what I really really love about this tea note, is that it isn't your green tea's, or your herbals, or white or black or Chinese, or anything that may be unfamiliar to people. This is the classic tea. This is, Lipton or Luizianne tea bags. Dark, robust, and very familiar to the nose. It's not always fun to have to smell something that isn't familiar to you. But, with this.. tea and tobacco dominating, both of those smells are familiar to everybody. There's a great smokiness that makes me feel as if a lit pipe is radiating off my skin. I don't get anything overly sweet that others have claimed to have gotten. I get a very natural sweetness. The natural sweetness from the tobacco and tea, with just a touch of honey, as L'Artisan loves to put a little drizzle of honey in many of their fragrances.

    What separates this from other fine tobacco fragrances like Tobbaco Vanille, is how this captures the experience. Tobacco Vanille is exceellent, yes, but artificially gourmand. Tobacco doesn't smell gourmand. Pipe tobacco smells a little bit sweet, but a bit sour as well. I can't explain this one enough, I would suggest anybody reading this who likes tobacco fragrances give this one a test drive.

    Projection on my skin was pretty good, I noticed L'Artisan fragrances to project in their own unique way, don't expect to fill up a room with your fragrance with any from their house.. and don't expect for anybody further than 1 foot (maybe a little more) away to smell you. Longevity for me was 7-8 hours, but I suspect it could be much more on clothing.. or in general, I was working with a decant (non spray). Which often doesn't give you everything a fragrance has to offer, as the full sprayer would. Also this fragrance is pretty linear, what you see is what you get, what you get in the opening is gonna be about the same as the dry down. There are 2 star players here.. tobacco and tea. They always appear to be as separates rather than blend together, I could always smell them apart.

    If you have the opportunity to sample this one, give it a throw.. it's super nice.

    05 January, 2011

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    Méchant Loup by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    A less disgusting version of Dzing! The opening of this presents the fecal matter accord, which had me thinking the worst early. Fortunately it disappears within 5 minutes, and turns into a pretty nice honey, hazelnut and licorice.. with subtle dried fruits.

    And, as with most L'Artisan's that I've sampled, this one doesn't project very much either (maybe because I'm pouring them on my skin and not spraying for better distribution?), but longevity is stellar.

    04 January, 2011

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    Poivre Piquant by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    Not digging this one at all. It's dry, spicy, and sour. The notes that are noticeable to me are the white pepper, milk, honey, and other various spices. The spice overpowers everything and makes the milk smell sour. The honey is there, but just barely, adding a touch of sweetness. The overall feel is a peppery, and basil fragrance with some woods in the background.

    I wish the honey were the major player here, and the spices took a back seat, that would allow for the creamyness of the milk note to shine through, along with the uniqueness of the honey... a note I don't see utilized very often in fragrances. As this dries down, the spices become a little less intense, but they still own the fragrance. I agree with another reviewer in smelling pencil shavings in the dry down as well. This one was a big let down for me.

    04 January, 2011

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    L'Eau du Navigateur by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    Smokey, spicy, tobacco.. yes. As many L'Artisan's tend to do. Coffee though?? None, No way. I wanna believe I'm smelling coffee, but it's not there. Just another simple, safe, spicy, resinous, fragrance from this house. The opening I get more of an herbal, licorice and anise.. The opening very much reminds me of Hermèssence's Brin de Réglisse, but much smokier. Projection is weak, and longevity is about 4 hours for me. After the 4 hour point, it tends to vanish and come back for the following hours.. this can happen for an extra few hours.

    Update: It took a few more wearings, but I finally get the coffee notes in this. They're very robust and in their natural form, hard to detect too, but once your nose captures them, it won't let go. My nose picks it up quickly now. Overall though, I still don't find this fragrance to be anymore than average. If the spice were toned down it might be better.. then again I tend to think that the spice in this one is just the natural spice from the coffee beans.. Yes, a coffee fragrance that isn't sweet, rather spicy.. awkward, but worth checking out. You may love it.

    04 January, 2011

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    Jour de Fête by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    I agree with the first impression of Play-Doh. This was my first impression as well, but shortly after it became something more enjoyable. Toasted almonds (very toasted at that) and vanilla. It's also slightly floral. As it dries, it mostly becomes a creamy vanilla, reminiscent of vanilla icing to me; I get a light dose of white musk as well. Projection seems close to the skin at first, but then it starts to project more as it dries.. weird huh. Longevity is about 8 hours for me.

    03 January, 2011

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    Timbuktu by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    I really enjoy the opening of Timbuktu. It starts off as a smokey berry and tobacco. Usually I don't like berries in fragrances, but this is done very well. The berries smell dry like dried fruit notes. I also get a little spice in the opening but not much.

    What I least like about this, is as it dries, it sits very close to the skin. The heart is a little floral, resinous, but mostly incense, with some sort of herbal accord, smells like parsley to my nose.. still a bit smokey too. I'm searching for those delicious dry berries, but I'm not finding them. I'd like to add that I don't care much for incense, but this incense is fantastic! It's like an herbal incense, with a bit of spice. The incense is always there, but never overpowers the other notes.

    I'd hate to say the fragrance pretty much ends there, but on my skin it does. Though that heart lasts a good couple hours. When the base notes do kick in, they're quite faint, and still behind the main attraction of this fragrance which is the frankincense. I get a little bit of vetiver and patchouli, but again, it's very hard to pick up. I wish projection and longevity were better on this one.

    If I had the money, I still probably wouldn't buy this because it lacks severely after the first 10 minutes. The tobacco/berry opening is exquisite, and the transition it makes into the dark spicy incense is remarkable. But, I don't think it justifies a purchase.. there are far better choices for much less money.

    03 January, 2011

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    Silver Mountain Water by Creed

    Kind of hard to describe. It's very fresh, slightly green and quite metallic; with that same rather nice metallic note you can find in Green Irish Tweed. SMW is very linear with poor longevity. I tend to hold fragrances well on my skin, but this one isn't good in the longevity department. Although I am left with a very VERY bland and faint smell that's indescribable, after the 3-4 hour mark. It's mostly like an aquatic metal at this point, that may last for the next 2-3 hours. For argument's sake, the overall longevity from when I put it on, until it's completely gone is up to 7 hours. Mind you, it will only be enjoyable in those first 3 or 4. As for the notes, I get some citrus, violet, blackcurrant, green tea, sandalwood, and musk, but it really is dominated by the metallic accord. The result, to me, is a very refined fragrance, I like it but I don't love it. It has character, but it doesn't have anything pushing its character out. Sillage is far below average, as is longevity as said earlier. Worth a try though if you can acquire a sample.. I do believe it is one of the most blended niche fragrances I've tried, to date.

    03 January, 2011

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    Paco Rabanne Pour Homme by Paco Rabanne

    I do enjoy this fragrance and have a lot of respect for it as well as the franchise. However, the opening could make or break it for you.

    Paco Rabanne pour Homme is a very green fragrance with a barbershop feel. It's pretty linear from beginning to end. It's spicy, and well blended as many of the old school powerhouses tend to be. My biggest complaint is the extremely sharp opening. Very very sharp and in your face. I never actually realized it until I wore it out. But, if you can hang on about 2 hours (at most) you may enjoy the green/spicy/classic/sophisticated dry down.

    Much respect to this one, but I'm glad I only have a 1 oz bottle of it, as I'm not a fan of such sharp fragrances. Longevity for me is anywhere up to 8-10 hours which is nice, since I enjoy the dry down. The opening though, is what you're going to smell without trying and for me, it makes for a big deduction of a potentially 5 star fragrance as some of its cousins Azzaro pH, Polo, and Drakkar Noir. I'll take them over this any day.

    03 January, 2011

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    Escape for Men by Calvin Klein

    Revising my previous review, I realize after reading it, I was rather biased, which is something I try not to be, when reviewing. That been said.. here goes..

    CK Escape.. Undoubtedly, one of the most unique designer scents I have ever gotten my nose under. Excellent longevity and projection, but a very much acquired taste. It reminds me of a bowl of fruit salad, as somebody else has mentioned. Pineapple and eucalyptus notes stand out the most to me here, along with apple, bergamot, and some cypress notes. I have only worn it 2 or 3 times, and from a personal level, I did not like it on my skin, and with my skin chemistry. So I did not spend time sniffing out the notes as it developed, rather, I just waited for it to hopefully get better as it dried down.

    In a nutshell.. Escape didn't work out for me. But, to say it's a horrible fragrance would be pushing the envelope. It's just something you need to try before you buy, 100% of the time, on this one. It may be discontinued and harder to find, but you do not want to go blind on Escape.

    01st January, 2011 (Last Edited: 20th August, 2011)

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    cK one by Calvin Klein

    I give this a neutral rating mostly because of the respect I have for it. CK One owned the mid and late 90's; it's what really put CK fragrances on the map. Back then, choices were far more limited than now, so options weren't as great. The result was a choice between CK One, Cool Water, Michael Jordan, or Curve for the most part. Keep in mind the designer fragrance world was very limited then. There weren't 80 million flankers, nor were there many mainstream designer brands being pushed.

    All that aside though, CK One has without doubt been reformulated. I remember when I first tried this, I was in middle school. Back around 97, I think. It was just a fresh, clean citrus, through and through. Not as floral and unbalanced as it is now. Can't remember the longevity then though.

    Now its got that great citrus that I still remember, but only for a short (very short) period in the opening. Within 5 minutes the citrus tones down, and out come the florals.. this makes it much more feminine than it used to be. This doesn't even bother me, I wear what I like, because I like it, not because it smells masculine or feminine. CK One just smells like crap though, after the first 5 minutes. I get a very very prominent "wet paper" accord, that overcasts everything. As if the dominating floral heart that takes over the great citrus opening weren't bad enough, the wet paper accord just makes my stomach churn.

    If you wanna be a part of history, you can try this fragrance, see what it was all about. The thing with One, is that it is history though.. if you missed out on its original formulation, that's a pity... it wasn't mind blowing but it was far better than it is now. Longevity on One also sucks (under 4-5 hours-on a good day), but thankfully, nobody has to endure it for that long.

    01st January, 2011 (Last Edited: 08 April, 2011)

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    Wall Street by Bond No. 9

    The overall fragrance is very unisex in my book, and even leads more towards the feminine side a little bit, especially in the first few hours. For the first hour I get really good projection, but after that it dies quite a bit, however it stays very aromatic throughout.. in the sense that, as it's floating up into the air, it's not giving you the full smell that you could smell on your skin up close (or wherever you sprayed). I noticed this to be common on the more expensive niche fragrances. It will project well at first, then die down yet stay aromatic. But, when you smell your skin up close, it'll smell different than what's projecting into the air.

    The more this fragrance's life goes on, the more it blends together, and feels just like one big green/soapy accord. UNTIL.. dun dun dun.. Final stages of Wall Street are pretty bad on my skin. The more it dries, the more it smells like vomit.. vomit and wet dog, with an aquatic touch. But, at this point it's rather faint, so it's not so abrasive, and pretty subtle. In the very very end I'm left with just an aquatic with no notes, it basically just smells very wet.

    It's pleasant, cooling, and relaxing, for the first few hours for sure. And, even if that smell carried on until the end, it still wouldn't be for me. I enjoy green fragrances, but this is more of green/aquatic in a sense, it's also more for a woman I think. It reminds me of some sort of mixed cucumber/melon/vegetable body spray for a woman. Overall longevity is about 10 hours for me, before the wet base completely vanishes. The projection stops around the 4 hour mark, and it becomes quite close to the skin.

    Not worth the money at all, not even sample worthy imo. Different, but nothing to write home about. My niche journey will continue though..

    01st January, 2011 (Last Edited: 09 February, 2011)

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