Perfume Reviews

Reviews by teardrop

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Total Reviews: 548

Sable & Soleil by Phaedon

Luckyscent describe this one as "stark & dry", but this is not my impression at all. I find it light, sweet & cheerful, opening with a mix of salty sea air & lemon blossom. After a few minutes, the jasmine comes through, along with an undercurrent of milky coconut. Two hours in, the tonka note sweetens it further, & there's a faint sandalwood in the base. The projection is low, & after four hours it's only detectable by putting nose to skin, although it lasts a good twelve hours.
I find this one pleasant but nothing special, & the lack of projection frustrates me, although it's possible it might bloom more on a warm day, with liberal application.It doesn't, however, come close to Phaedon's richer fragrances like Tabac Rouge or Rouge Avignon for me.
02nd February, 2017

Aqua Allegoria Ylang & Vanille by Guerlain

According to the notes list on Fragrantica, there is carnation in this one, as well as the eponymous ylang & vanille. None of the reviews here on BN mention this, but I find a definite note of carnation competing with the ylang in the initial phase here. The ylang slowly wins through, joined around forty five minutes in by a creamy, smooth & tropical vanilla. The whole effect is like a soft, warm breath of summer on this cold winter's day. There's no further development, & from here it wears very close to the skin, but it's a dreamy, creamy, not-too-sweet floral that I could see myself enjoying during the warmer months.
02nd December, 2016

Darling by Fabergé

This is an aldehydic floral with a cosmetic-style, powdery rose. For the first hour, the aldehydes are pungent, almost headache-inducing, & frankly rather cheap-smelling. And then it settles into a base of mossy woods, softening considerably after two hours, & pretty much gone after five. There's also a hint of pickling vinegar along the way.
I've seen a review that compares this to the original Le Jardin by Max Factor, a fragrance I owned in my late teens, & haven't smelled since. From my vague memories of it, I can see the resemblance. But my tastes have changed, & neither are something I would want to wear now.
02nd December, 2016
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Parfum Divin by Caudalíe

Apparently this perfume is based on the scent of a body oil made by Caudalie, which I have never tried, but reviews on Fragrantica peg it as a lighter version of the Nuxe oil, which I have tried, & I agree with their assessment. According to the notes list, there is rose in here, but I smell white flowers, mainly jasmine, atop a base of sun-warmed skin. There's no coconut or suntan lotion here though, & it's not overly sweet, although there is a creamy vanilla along with soft woods & white musk in the base. It's quite diffusive for the first ninety minutes, & persists nicely for around seven hours before fading.
It's a simple but pleasant scent suitable for the warmer months, & I think it could be worn anywhere without offending anyone.
02nd December, 2016

Comme des Garçons White by Comme des Garçons

In the opening I get rich woods, mainly cedar, with a touch of what smells to me like citrus, but I'm guessing must be the pomegranate note. As the fragrance unfolds, I detect herbal/spicy notes of coriander, pepper, nutmeg & clove, followed by a spicy rose in the heart. Ninety minutes in, it all dies down to a low hum of peppery woods, although I do get a whiff of lily of the valley, & later there's cinnamon in the base, fading out at around the seven hour mark.
Those first ninety minutes are pleasantly autumnal, smelling more golden-brown than white to me. After this, however, the fragrance seems to collapse in on itself, leaving me somewhat underwhelmed in the end.
02nd December, 2016

Eau de Gucci by Gucci

This review is for the Eau de Gucci Concentree version, launched in 1982. This is the one pictured on this page, although it's listed as Eau de Gucci, which was actually launched in 1993, & had a different set of notes. The notes for the Concentree are listed on parfumo.net as tangerine, lilac, jasmine, violet, sandalwood, vetiver & vanilla.
This goes on citrussy & cologne-like, quickly morphing into a white floral accord with jasmine & I swear, a rubbery tuberose. Thirty minutes in it blooms into a full-bodied, heady yet smooth & spring-like floral. Three hours in, a lovely lilac note emerges from the background to take centre stage. From this point it fades fast, & I get no discernible base, but it's still going softly after eleven hours.
Definitely one for springtime.
02nd December, 2016

Amazone (original) by Hermès

This opens as a bright, sharp, green floral with a prominent hyacinth note. A few minutes in, it turns unpleasantly bitter on my skin, but after an hour the bitterness fades, leaving a softer green floral accord. At this point I get lily of the valley, & later a fresh & pretty rose, with a soft vetiver beneath. Four hours in it's very soft, but lasts around ten hours before fading out.
This isn't my usual type of thing, & I'm giving it a neutral rating because I dislike that bitter phase. But after this it's really a quite lovely floral, evocative of springtime. One that I think all lovers of green florals would appreciate!
02nd December, 2016

Shocking by Elsa Schiaparelli

This review is for the 1997 version.

This is rich, honeyed florals, like "a voluptuous, heavy silk gown" as one reviewer put it. In the initial phase, the sweetness is tempered by fruit & herbs with bergamot & tarragon, but these soon step aside to give centre stage to a narcissus that positively drips with honey. This might be cloying for some, especially in an enclosed space, & those who find honey in perfume to smell like pee would probably find it repellent. But I love it! Two hours in, there are glimmers of a more crisp, chypre base, but the sweetness remains present throughout. I guess there isn't any civet in this version, as I get nothing animalic here. The projection is strong for the first three hours, & it hums along softly for a good seven hours before fading.
I didn't expect to like this, but it's just the kind of big, sweet floral that I adore; a very pleasant surprise!
02nd December, 2016

Cadjméré 18 by Parfumerie Generale

This opens with creamy woods, citrus peel & a faintly camphoraceous note. The much-mentioned toasted coconut is there, but I have to sniff for it. It's a slightly odd mix, but soon it settles into a lightly spiced, fuzzy sandalwood, with a deep, chocolatey vanilla running through it. It's not overly sweet, though, more like salted caramel than cupcakes. At this stage I totally get the comparisons to Dior Addict. There's something vaguely animalic in there as well, & twenty minutes in it's a luscious comfort scent. After an hour or so, some powderiness creeps in, & at the two-hour mark it's all soft, powdery woods, still with that faint camphoraceousness. From here it becomes a skin scent, & lasts around nine hours before fading.
I've really enjoyed using my sample as a comfort scent on cold days, & as an added bonus, my partner likes it too. I'd prefer it to project for much longer, but this could well end up on my buy list.
02nd December, 2016

Shalimar Ode à la Vanille : Sur la Route de Madagascar by Guerlain

The opening blast of bergamot is thankfully not as sharp as in the modern Shalimar EDP, & the scent quickly becomes a little leathery, with the richness of opoponax resin humming along beneath. Fifteen minutes in, the best part of this fragrance begins to show itself: a gorgeously satisfying, smoky, not-too-sweet vanilla, joined further on by a wisp of incense. It reminds me of the much-missed PDT version of Shalimar that I owned in the 90s, & I find myself huffing my arm in blissful longing. This stage lasts & projects for a good long while until, around four hours in, it all softens down into a woody vanilla base & becomes a skin scent. Seven hours in it's almost gone.
I could kick myself for waiting so long to try this one as it's so hard to find now. I can only keep praying to the Perfume Gods that it might return in some form, someday...
02nd December, 2016

Jasmal by Creed

Smelling this, all I can think of is vintage Diorissimo. Seriously, this is way more about lily of the valley than jasmine, to my nose. It's a little green, with just a touch of indole, becoming slightly creamy after the first couple of hours. At this point, it settles very close to the skin, & four hours in it's pretty much gone.
From reading other reviews here, I can see I'm not the only one having longevity issues with this one. It's very pretty, & I think it might be lovely in spring, but its lack of tenacity is disappointing. I much prefer its richer, more oriental sister, Jasmine Imperatrice Eugenie, & her delicious sandalwood drydown.
02nd December, 2016

Narcotic Flowers by 1000 Flowers

An animalic floral oriental with bergamot in the opening, peachy osmanthus, indolic jasmine, tuberose & a touch of green narcissus. After twenty minutes, I detect vanilla & a faint musty note which doesn't detract from the whole, but serves to add a hint of intrigue. Projection is good for the first hour, & then it quietens down considerably. Ninety minutes in, it's a creamy, fruity floral similar to Isabey's Lys Noir, but not as overwhelmingly sickly. The base is soft labdanum, woods & subtle spices, & four hours in all that's left is a trace of narcissus with vanilla. The whole lasts around six hours before fading out altogether.
I like this, but the performance is much weaker than I expected. I need to try it again on a warm spring day, in the hope that it'll bloom more for me then.
02nd December, 2016

Mélodie de L'Amour by Parfums Dusita

For the first few minutes, this is a pollen-heavy bouquet of spring flowers, along with a hint of plastic. This bouquet is dominated by the type of indolic jasmine that's reminiscent of magic markers. I sense a gardenia note struggling to get through, but just when I've decided this is one of those gardenia perfumes that's not really gardenia, twenty minutes in she emerges in all her glory! Yes, creamy, true gardenia with a faintly vanillic undertone. There's a rubbery note here, too, but that lessens over the next hour, & the gardenia continues to occupy centre stage, until around four hours in. At this point I begin to get wafts of neroli, although it's not listed. Perhaps this is how my nose interprets the peach note, or there's orange blossom among the listed "white flowers". From here I detect no further change in its development, the projection goes from very good to low, & it begins to fade out after eleven hours.
Apart from the plastic note in the opening, this is a lovely floral that I would recommend for my fellow gardenia lovers to try. For myself, though, having tried the perfection that is Dame Perfumery's Soliflore Gardenia, it has a lot to live up to. And at this price point, I would hesitate to consider a purchase.
02nd December, 2016
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Coco Coco by Coqui Coqui

Although the only note listed for this one is coconut, I have to say it does not scream "COCONUT!" to me. For me it's more of an airy, aquatic white floral with a hint of green. There is a coconut-like vibe, but it comes off as very light & synthetic. It's not the thick, sticky-sweet kind of coconut that I find so delicious, nor does it suggest suntan lotion or beach cocktails. It projects well for the first couple of hours, becoming sweeter & slightly rubbery, & then settles very close to the skin. After five hours it's completely gone.
I'm giving it a neutral rating because it might suit those who prefer their coconut on the subtle side, but this is not coconut as I know & love it, & after the first two hours, the performance is abysmal. Disappointing.
02nd December, 2016

Saggita by Electimuss

Built around the champaca flower, this fragrance is not dissimilar to Tom Ford's Champaca Absolute. It's a heady, "perfumey", warm floral, with a pronounced fruity aspect, similar to the apricot-like scent of osmanthus, & a subtle hint of spice. For the first two hours it's pretty powerful, & then it loses the fruitiness, settling slowly into a creamy, woody floral with perhaps a touch of incense, & fading out after seven hours.
I adore the scent of champaca, & this one is very nicely done, but I think Comme des Garcons' Champaca is more to my taste, being less fruity & more of a creamy white floral.
02nd December, 2016

Lys Noir (new) by Isabey

This opens with sharply peppery aldehydes, before a creamy, fruity floral accord comes to the fore. The most prominent floral here is lily; the promised narcissus sadly absent, to my nose. There's a light dusting of spices, & dark woods humming along beneath. One hour in, the fruity aspect becomes overwhelmingly, sickeningly, headache-inducingly sweet. Another hour later, thankfully this subsides, & what's left is a soft, buttery-creamy sandalwood. At this stage it becomes a skin scent, just about detectable after seven hours.
I tried this on a warm, humid day, & again in cooler, fresher weather, but the effect was the same. I can't quite bring myself to give it a negative rating, because the sandalwood at the end is quite delicious. But for me, it's not worth holding my breath through that sickening phase to get there.
02nd December, 2016

La Religieuse by Serge Lutens

I had to try this for myself, despite the number of reviews panning it, because the notes list made it sound right up my street. Alas, I should have heeded the reviews, & left it at that. It's all true: the "incompleteness" of the jasmine note, the similarity to a hundred department store fragrances and/or functional products, the general synthetic, "plasticky" feel, the almost total absence of incense or animalics. A shockingly disappointing excuse for a Lutens.

It opens with a flat, fruity jasmine, joined fifteen minutes in by a kind of grey, dusty-peppery note which I assume is supposed to be incense, but it's faint. One hour in, something resembling musk begins to warm & soften it, & there's a vaguely aquatic note in the heart, before it settles into a musky floral base five hours in. This stage is pleasant but generic, & nothing more. It's still going softly seven hours in, when I head for the shower so I can forget this experience & apply something more interesting.
06th September, 2016

Divine by Divine

This is a real old-school perfume in the French style, with oakmoss apparent right from the start. Unfortunately for me it's a style that doesn't do too well on my skin, coming off as musty, dated & slightly off. For the first half hour it's hard to pick out any other notes, but then slowly a warm, creamy sandalwood emerges, along with a touch of indolic jasmine & tuberose, although the floral notes don't stick around for long. The sandalwood sweetens the moss, eventually melding with vanilla in the base over around six hours.
I respect these "grand dame" type of fragrances, but I find them muddy, too "well-blended", if you will. I would have preferred the white flowers to stand out more strongly, but the base notes seem to overpower them. Perhaps it's my skin, which often seems to amplify notes like moss, vetiver & galbanum, & I'm not a fan of green notes in general. But if you love this style, this is surely one to try!
06th September, 2016

Jasmin de Nuit by The Different Company

This review is for the older formula.

This jasmine is warm, indolic & spiced with cinnamon & anise. I don't get the listed citrus notes at all. It's animalic in a soft, furry way; nothing too filthy or offensive here. A whiff of patchouli brings an earthiness to the mix, & later there's a grassy note in the heart. It doesn't change much in the drydown, fading to a skin scent five hours in, & almost gone after eight. Another reviewer compared it with Musc Ravageur, & I can see the resemblance, except of course for the added jasmine. I would class this as a jasmine-based floriental, rather than a white floral in the usual sense.
I did notice that when I first wiped the dabber on my arm, the spices were more pronounced, the animalic side less so. But after decanting & spraying, these impressions were reversed. I wonder if this, as well as the reformulation, accounts for the differing impressions one reads of this perfume?
06th September, 2016

La Collection Croisière : Jangala by Pierre Guillaume

Hoping for a lush & steamy tropical jungle suffused with the scent of moist earth, here I find a light, leafy, slightly fruity aromatic, with a quite synthetic feel, & an "off" note lurking beneath. A few minutes in, the ginger note appears & steadily strengthens, until in the heart the scent morphs into a lightly spiced woody masculine. There are hints of sandalwood, but it's not creamy or coconutty, to my nose. Further on, there's something vaguely biscuit-like, & a touch of incense in the base, before it begins to fade out around six hours in.
An odd fragrance, this. Not altogether unpleasant, but with two distinct & very different phases, the opening giving no hint of what comes later. The second phase strikes me as rather autumnal in feel, & I might enjoy it more when the weather cools. For now though, the search for the perfect "moist earth" scent continues, with Black March in the lead, & Demeter's Dirt close behind.
06th September, 2016

La Collection Croisière : Paris Seychelles by Pierre Guillaume

The list of tropical, beachy notes for this one made me sure I'd love it, but I should have heeded the reviews here. Every single one of them is negative, with good reason. It really is truly horrifying: synthetic, sickly & saccharine. It opens with a marine accord (listed as "warm sand") that smells ok from a distance, but up close the plumeria note lends it a vaguely fruity, almost nauseating edge that just doesn't fit. As the scent progresses, there's a faint hint of spices, then ginger lily & a grassy note. Ninety minutes in it finally becomes more creamy & coconutty, but remains very artificial-smelling & sickly-sweet throughout. I totally get the other reviewers' associations with functional fragrances. It settles very close around four hours in, & it's fading out at the seven-hour mark when I decide to apply something else.
A huge disappointment this, coming as it does from the same nose that created scents like L'Ombre Fauve. How could this have happened?? Monsieur Guillame should be thoroughly ashamed of this travesty, & discontinue it forthwith.
06th September, 2016

Soleil Blanc by Tom Ford

This has a woody citrus opening with a diffusive "solar" feel, & distant echoes of Bronze Goddess. Thirty minutes in, it becomes much more milky & fruity, resembling a coconut & tiare shower cream by Imperial Leather that I've been using over the summer. Then, at the two-hour stage, I can clearly smell a scrumptious pistachio note; a delight as it is so unusual in a perfume. The performance here is almost identical to that of Orchid Soleil, i.e. it becomes a skin scent five hours in, but lasts over twelve. And similarly, I enjoy the drydown but cannot justify the price of a bottle.
06th September, 2016

Orchid Soleil by Tom Ford

This one is very different from both Velvet Orchid & Black Orchid. I've seen it described as a "tuberose bomb", but I don't get tuberose here at all. For me it's mainly lily & vanilla, & it's very soft; nowhere near as loud as Black Orchid. A few moments in, the pink pepper & patchouli produce a little spice, making it just as suitable for the cooler months as for the summer, I think. It doesn't come over as particularly "beachy" for me. Thirty minutes in, the "chestnut cream" accord has begun to develop, & at the two-hour stage I get delicious wafts of creamy nuttiness. There's no further development, & five hours in it's just a skin scent, although I can still detect it after thirteen hours.
I enjoy the drydown of this one, & I'd really love to see that gorgeous rose gold bottle next to my bottles of Black Orchid & Velvet Orchid, but I'd need it to project a lot more to justify buying it.
06th September, 2016

Sun by Jil Sander

This starts off bright & effervescent, with a fruity element more akin to sherbet powder than juice or pulp. After a few minutes, it settles into a warm, milky, fruity floral, mostly lily, although it is hard to distinguish notes here. There's also something vaguely leathery lurking beneath, but it's not a heavy, tanned leather, more the scent of warm human skin. Three hours in there's a vanilla sweetness, & twelve hours in it's still humming away softly, with a soapy feel to the base.
Another reviewer describes this most aptly as a cross between expensive soap & posh suntan lotion. It's beachy, but sophisticated; no coconut & nothing overtly tropical here. It's simply a lovely, classy but casual scent which I think would work well for any relaxed occasion in warm weather. It also reminds me strongly of something else, especially in the opening. Perhaps a body product I've used or a place I've been, maybe even a Lush shop??
21st July, 2016

Love Coco by Honoré de Prés

The manufacturer's sample I have is labelled as Love Coconut by Honore des Pres.

I expected a sweet, moist, luscious coconut, but this is dry & desiccated, along the lines of Heeley's Coccobello without the woody notes. Some reviews mention a Thai curry vibe, & the notes list does include coriander leaves (cilantro), but I don't get that here. I'm not sure how old my sample is as it was sent by a basenotes buddy, but as it's supposedly "all natural", it may have faded over time. It's very soft & although I get a little vanilla in the base, it barely lasts five hours on me.
I'm glad I got to try this as I couldn't find a sample anywhere online, but it is not the coconut of my dreams by a long way.
21st July, 2016

Ensoleille Moi by André Gas

Apparently Andre Gas is a jewellery designer operating out of Saint Tropez, & this fragrance was created for him by Mathilde Laurent to evoke the sun-drenched, beachside lifestyle of the locale; the name, roughly translated, meaning "sun me up".
The scent is a sunny, sweet tropical floral. There's a little bergamot to brighten the opening, & then warm, milky tiare with vanilla, & an airy, beachy marine note. Slowly it dries down to creamy, coconutty base. It's similar in feel to Bronze Goddess, but softer & less woody, & longer-lasting at almost eleven hours duration.
I highly recommend this one to lovers of beachy, tropical scents, & although seemingly hard to find, I see it is available from Beautyhabit (not affiliated).
21st July, 2016

Soliflore Gardenia by Dame Perfumery

This review is for the oil version.

This is one of those extremely rare & beautiful things: a true, buttery, real gardenia scent! On first applying this, I get a faint note of wax crayons, but only when sniffing up close, & not for long. This may be due to the carrier oil, & personally I don't mind it, as it brings back happy childhood memories. Sniffing from a distance, all I smell is gardenia, & nothing else! The projection is good for the first three hours, & then it fades to a soft skin scent with just a hint of a grassy note.
I might just have to purchase this one, being a gardenia lover & very fussy about perfumes that attempt to replicate them. When I find one that succeeds, I have to have it!
21st July, 2016

Lady Day by Maria Candida Gentile

This review is for the extrait.

This is supposed to be gardenia, but honestly, all I smell is mouthwash & lilies. It becomes more creamy & floral three hours in, but otherwise there's no development here. The projection is moderate, & it fades fast after around five hours.
Meh. In my view, this is not a worthy tribute to the awesome Ms Holliday.
21st July, 2016

Nani by Saffron James Parfums

This review is for the oil version.

This opens as a white floral, mainly indolic jasmine, with a distinctly barnyard feel. Over the first hour, mimosa, lily & ylang ylang come through, & later on there's a creamy-sweet frangipani. The projection is low as you might expect from an oil, & it lasts around five hours before fading.
Despite its less than stellar performance, I really enjoy the scent of this animalic, tropical floral, & I think it might be great in the EDP.
21st July, 2016

'Ume by Saffron James Parfums

This review is for the oil version.

This smells like jasmine in the vial, turning on skin to a soft white ginger with waterlily & yuzu fruit. The listed gardenia note comes off as a ghostly white floral presence in the background, & the base is creamy with a slight grassy-green note, more like a subtle vetiver than the listed oakmoss. The projection is low as you might expect from an oil, & it lasts around five hours before fading.
I don't dislike this, but it's way too quiet for me, & not the lush & heady floral I was hoping for.
21st July, 2016