Perfume Reviews

Reviews by AmateurFragMan

Total Reviews: 20

Bulgari Man in Black by Bulgari

I was in Sephora looking at Spicebomb when the SA pointed me to this. I decided to get this instead after seeing the price point on Fragnet. I'm glad that I went that route instead of full retail. This scent, while amazing to me, just doesn't have any strength to it. And that is a bit annoying to me considering the name. If you're going to name your fragrance the same name that a certain country music icon went by it had better carry on in similar tradition. But this didn't. Not at all. But I'll give points for presentation... the bottle they used for this is the truth. Very dense, heavy bottle, nice black matte finish. The sprayer could use a lot of work, but other than that I loved the presentation.

But I don't think the name fits this fragrance at all. Man in black? More like man in a cardigan sitting next to a fireplace that has Christmas stockings hung. This fragrance reminds me a lot of the holidays. Actually very similar to Burberry London in that way, although more versatile than London. I can wear this any time between October and February. I just can't wear Burberry London at all before Thanksgiving or after Christmas. It's just not natural to me.

Anyway... very pleasing scent that has been hamstrung by its performance. This is supposed to be an EDP, but I don't get that at all considering EDPs are supposed to be more potent. But this fragrance is far from potent.

It's definitely worth a buy, but only at a discount because of performance.
18th March, 2016

Sauvage by Christian Dior

This fragrance is just one example for why you should take fragrance reviews with a tiny grain of salt. If I went by all the negative crap I would have missed out on a great fragrance.

Always... ALWAYS... try something out for yourself first, especially if it looks/sounds appealing to you.
26th December, 2015

Luna Rossa by Prada

I hate having to give this a thumbs down because the scent itself is very pleasant. But I've encountered farts that last longer and have better sillage than this stuff. It doesn't matter how nice a fragrance is if you can't even tell it's on.
07th May, 2015
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Eau de Gentiane Blanche by Hermès

The previous review is correct in their overall assessment that this is "simplistic", my paraphrase. But that doesn't mean that it isn't exciting. Not if what you're looking for is a simple, clean, fresh, pleasing cologne that isn't loud or boastful in how it comes across. Not every cologne has to be daring to be great.

There is a very subtle citrus to this, but if you "blink" you'll probably miss it. It's green, but not overly so. It's soft and light, great for a casual spring day.
05th April, 2015

Set Sail St. Barts for Men by Tommy Bahama

Pros: Pleasant, "day at the beach" vibe. Inoffensive. Inexpensive.
Cons: Horrendous longevity (unless short longevity is what you need), almost no sillage, generic.


It does smell fairly similar to Virgin Island Water, sans the coconut, for the first 5-10 minutes. After that it starts to smell like a weak sister to Nautica Voyage. It's certainly no replacement for VIW, and not because it's not as good (which it isn't, by any stretch of imagination). IMO, an EDC is no replacement for anything.

It's good you'll only spend 20 bucks for this on Fragnet because that price point is a ceiling, not a floor. It's good for running erands on a warm day or a warm casual day/night out. And that's about it.
17th June, 2014

Dirty English by Juicy Couture

Spicy, woodsy, a little dry, a little dirty, and with some subtle warm sweetness underlying. The package/bottle design makes me think they were trying to convey somewhat of a rock n roll vibe with this. They were pretty accurate, imo. But not in some blazing lead guitarist kind of way. More like a solid rock bassist. Cool, but not flashy.

I love the scent, but the longevity just isn't that great. The projection is also fairly moderate, but that's probably a good thing as any more projection and it would be too cloying. Some may already think this is cloying.

Longevity is somewhat of a pet peeve for me so I give it a neutral rating. Otherwise a thumbs up.

Recommended wear: day, casual. Seasons: fall, (early) spring.
30th December, 2013

Flight by Michael Jordan

If La Nuit De L'Homme were a messy, disjointed-smelling drug store scent it would smell exactly like Flight by Michael Jordan. Even the bottle design has some ripped off design aspects of YSL's offering, with the exception of those awfully tacky rubber whatchumacallits that hug the sides of the bottle.

Even though it smells nice (for a time), I'm tempted to give it a thumbs down for the blatant ripping of YSL and sloppy production value. It's as if the notes in this thing are all trying to pick a fight with each other to see which one can get your attention... but all fall flat. The only thing that keeps this in neutral territory is the very affordable price tag. It'd be great for a teenager who wants to smell like his big brother in college, or even his dad, who wears YSL.
28th December, 2013

Narciso Rodriguez for Him by Narciso Rodriguez

I'm not sure what to say about this fragrance. It's certainly not what I was expecting. If I could use colors to say what I mean, I expected this fragrance to smell "grey" but it comes off as very "purple". Not sure if that will make sense to anyone else...

It was very cloying on that first time spray. I wasn't sure that I'd like it, but I like fragrances that challenge me and this has grown on me pretty well. Definitely not an every day wear, though. I prefer to wear this on cloudy/rainy days or on days when I'm not in a particularly good mood and just don't want to be bothered by my more "cheerful" fragrances. Very much for those days when I feel "bruised".

This is definitely meant for cooler weather, which is another reason (along with the infrequency of wears) that I'm happy I bought a smaller bottle given that I live in the south where a winter day is typically in the upper 30's/lower 40's, but frequently trips above that into the 50's, 60's, or even 70's.

All in all, I like this fragrance but I'm not sure I'll re-purchase it once I run out. But that will probably be a while so my mind may change between now and then.
28th December, 2013

Burberry London for Men by Burberry

Add me to the list of people who say that reminds them of the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays. This is nearly a signature for me November 1 - December 31/January 1. I honestly wouldn't want to wear it any other time of year.

Unfortunately, I have to agree with everyone regarding the longevity and projection. It's decent for the first half an hour to an hour, but after that it seems to start losing its luster fairly quickly. Can't even detect it after 3 hours unless I sniff my shirt. Maybe others can smell it more on me after that, but I can't. That's a disappointment, but given how wonderful it smells, especially for the purposes I use it for, and how cheaply it can be bought through Fragrancenet the longevity and projection issues are an annoyance I can tolerate.

Tentative thumbs up.
28th December, 2013

Exceptional Because You Are for Men by Exceptional

Ok... I had to edit this. I felt like my previous review was just silly.

Honestly, there's nothing about this fragrance that smells *bad*. It's a very fresh, clean smelling fragrance. What has everyone in a fuss about it is the fact that it is SUCH a blatantly derivative rip off of the whole Green Irish Tweed/Cool Water/Love & Luck fougère motif (specifically the violet note thing) combined with the absurd $80 retail tag. Love & Luck and Cool Water both do this kind of thing so much better and you can get much better deals on those fragrances. Sure you can get a 3.4oz bottle of this through Fragrancenet for $55 which is better than retail, but you can get a 4.2oz bottle of Cool Water for $38 or an entire Love & Luck gift set (with a 3.4oz bottle AND .25oz mini) for 5 bucks less than Exceptional, also through Fragrancenet. You're wasting money by buying this.

I changed my thumb rating from down to neutral only because the actual smell of this isn't bad. It's actually fairly pleasant, even if it is a mediocre rip off. If they'd chop the retail price of this by at least half, with a discount price of $15-25 then I'd even be fine with giving it a thumbs up. But at $80 retail? They're lucky I'm not keeping it a thumbs down.
11th October, 2011 (last edited: 07th April, 2012)

Brit for Men by Burberry

I first encountered Brit in a magazine "scent tab" years ago and immediately wanted a bottle of it. I eventually got the bottle later on only to be disappointed. I remember the first blast being a blitzkrieg on my senses. At the time I just thought it was too busy, but the reality of it was my nose just wasn't mature enough to appreciate it yet.

Sensibilities change and my appreciation has grown from mere appreciation to complete enjoyment. This is now one of my signature scents for fall/winter. When I first spray this on I'm hit with a strong dose of ginger, which is what I suspect gives this fragrance that "powdery" feel to it when combined with the florals and tonka bean. I also sense vanilla, though there is no vanilla listed in the note break down.

Brit is a very spicy and woodsy fragrance. In fact, I have to wonder if the perfumer wasn't thinking of Christmas when they were thinking this up. It seems like the perfect fragrance to wear to a Christmas party or Christmas Eve/Day get together. It's certainly tailor made for cool/cold weather. Even though there are florals in this, if I had to pick one color to describe the scent of Brit it would have to be grey.

I absolutely love Burberry Brit and highly recommend it. There will always be a bottle of it sitting in my wardrobe.
17th September, 2011

Love and Luck for Men by Ed Hardy [Christian Audigier]

I got a $12 mini of this at the store a couple months ago. The first time I sprayed this on I became an instant fan. The citrus top notes in most fragrances have this "biting" quality, but the citrus in Love & Luck comes off very smooth. The only downside is that it doesn't last very long.

Fortunately, the heart of the fragrance is just as strong as the opening and is the driving force of the fragrance throughout the duration of the wear. Like other reviewers have noted elsewhere the violet is undeniable here. My nose isn't developed enough to differentiate all the notes, but I know the violet when I smell it. The transition from the citrus, albeit short, was also smooth. The longevity was surprisingly good on my skin as well, much better than I thought it would be. I also noticed, a good 4 to 5 hours into the wear, that it was still projecting quite nicely. The only thing I didn't get much of was the base. Maybe it was just the mini that I had, but there didn't seem to be much of a base after the violet started to die off. Or maybe I just didn't much notice it.

Ed Hardy may not be all that fashionable, and I don't know how any of the other Ed Hardy frags come off, but this stuff is brilliant in my humble opinion. One of the best designer fragrance I've ever smelled. And for the price this fragrance is ABSOLUTELY worth it. Double thumbs up!
25th August, 2011

Island Voyage by Nautica

Island Voyage has become a personal favorite of mine to wear daily or casually. The melon contrasting with the black pepper in the opening makes it pop, but the fragrance is as inoffensive as a crisp, brilliantly sunny spring day. It's sweet, salty, watery, breezy... very simple but perfect for its name.

The longevity and projection of this fragrance is not too great. You may need to be a little liberal with the sprays if you want others to smell you. Another complaint is the sprayer on my bottle is very inconsistent, which is fairly annoying. It's also a bit on the synthetic side, but it's a cheap frag so that's to be expected.

If you're looking for a cheap casual/day time scent, you could do worse than Island Voyage.
25th August, 2011
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Le Mâle by Jean Paul Gaultier

Mint and vanilla. And something else that I haven't learned how to distinguish yet. That's the opening. It all dances into a fine powdery mist of a scent that is both as fluffy as a cloud and as biting as a wet towel barely grazing the tip end of your skin as it's snapped fiercely in your direction.

After a while the fragrance tends to calm down into the orange blossom mid notes, while the vanilla, which is always hanging around the entire time the fragrance is on your skin, continues to kind of glow like an aura. I can tell that the cinnamon is there, but it's very light. Not at all like in Halston Z-14, where the cinnamon seems to ride the vetiver like it's a wild horse.

The sandalwood seems to be a bit different in this than it is in another fragrance I have that has the note. There is supposedly sandalwood in Nautica's Island Voyage, which I've worn quite a bit this summer, and though it smells nice and pleasant it seems a little out of place. That's not the case with this. Sandalwood seems to have more of a "soft" kind of canvas to my nose (what I'm thinking is sandalwood, that is), which suits this fragrance perfectly. That's what the majority of this fragrance turns into. A soft, sweet, minty orange blossom & vanilla pillow.

I don't wear this often, especially in the summer, just because of how strong it is. And if you're a guy who doesn't like sweet, candy-like fragrances then stay the heck away from this one. You almost certainly won't like it. But I love this stuff. For what it is it lasts a long time. If you try it and you like it you're probably going to be liking it most of the day, if not all day.
13th August, 2011

Acqua di Giò pour Homme by Giorgio Armani

What can I say that hasn't already been said? This is a very fresh and light/airy scent, bordering on feminine. I know this is a man's fragrance, but I think women could easily wear this. That isn't to say that this too effeminate for a guy to wear. But if you're the type of person who thinks men need to smell like smokey leather, sweat, and motor oil then you should steer well clear of this. It is a very sweet smelling scent, and could be cloying to those who don't like sweet aromatic frags.

One downside to the fragrance is that there is nothing really there to wow your nose with. I'm fairly new to the "world of fragrances", although I've worn colognes on/off since I was a teen (I'm 32 now). There are probably fragrances in this "genre" that have more to offer you than ADG (I've read L'Eau D'Issey is one, though I've never sniffed it). Another downside is the age appeal. I'm not a person who too much likes age generalizations when it comes to fragrances because I think a person should generally wear whatever they like. But if you're someone who prefers something with more boldness and/or stature, you probably won't like this as it's very casual. It's also got a fairly prominent detergent-y feel to it, so keep that in mind as well if you don't like scents that smell like soap.

Overall it's an above average scent, with a very good compliment factor. Projection is decent, but not great, and longevity could be a bit better. But if you're just looking for something fresh and casual for everyday wear in the spring/summer this would be a good purchase.
18th June, 2011

Michael Jordan by Michael Jordan

Got a 15ml mini at Walmart for 6 bucks... so right away it wins a "money saver" award. But is it worth the money you could've spent on a better frag? Maybe, maybe not. I bought it as an add-on to another fragrance I was buying just because I wanted to try it out so I can't really answer that from experience.

It's very generic smelling, so you know its not going to blow your nose hairs back. It reminds me a bit of T by Tommy Hilfiger, except it's got a "darker" feel to it whereas T has more of a "lighter" feel. It's sporty, a little spicy, and sweet. I like the dry down alot, even though it stays close to the skin. Actually, this stays pretty close to my skin in all phases, but I wasn't really expecting much anyway for 6 bucks. And unfortunately, it gave me very limited longevity, which I can't excuse even given the cheap price. Other frags of comparable cost last longer than this did for me...

Overall, it's just ok. Nowhere near a thumbs up, but not poor enough to deserve a thumbs down. It's a decent knock-around juice, good for an after shower spritz or running errands just to smell nice, but I won't have much use for it otherwise.
28th May, 2011

Virgin Island Water by Creed

You put the lime in the coconut and spray it all on... (for all you Kermit the Frog fans out there)

The lime comes out swinging like Barry Bonds when you spray this sucker on, but the majority of this frag's heart is dominated by the coconut (even though it's supposedly a top note). Please note my point of view comes from having only sprayed from a sample atomizer. I don't know if it's different coming straight from the bottle.

Bottomline: if you're looking for a summer fragrance, you should look no further than this. I see other people talking about longevity issues, and on my second use it didn't seem to last as long as the first time. It lasted on me around 6 or 7 hours the first time and around 4 or 5 hours the second time. It still did its job. Of course, expecting a fragrance to last 12 hours is extremely unreasonably on my part. For any fragrance to last on me for more than 5 or 6 hours is an accomplishment and a half.

I should mention that Virgin Island Water is the first Creed fragrance I've ever had the pleasure of smelling. In fact, it's the first niche fragrance altogether that I've ever tried. I would rather have tried Green Irish Tweed first just because it sounds more like my style of fragrance (and because I'm a huge Cool Water fan), but VIW is a very impressive juice. Is it worth the money? If you can afford it, like it more than other summer frags, and want it? Of course. All fragrances are luxury items anyway, whether they cost $30 or $300.
10th May, 2011

Cool Water by Davidoff

All I ever read on Basenotes is how much of a rip off of GIT this is. As a long-time fan of Cool Water who's never smelled GIT before, I'll just have to take people's word for it. Whatever it is, it suits me fine. It's a strong, fresh blast of green spring/summertime fun. It may not be natural, but then again neither is cotton candy. It's still fun and enjoyable. And long-lasting, much more so than your average designer frag.
09th May, 2011

T for Him by Tommy Hilfiger

Considering that I got two 3.4 oz bottles of this stuff at Sams Club on discount, I'd say I got a pretty good bargain. This may not be earth-shattering, but it's a good middle of the road fragrance for daytime spring/summer wear. The "fresh wet t-shirts" note is an interesting note, and though I don't know if it quite gets that effect, it does make for a somewhat spicy middle. The fragrance really reminds me of fresh cut grass.

Some people won't find much interesting about this fragrance, and I can understand why. It's not very complex. It's just straight up fresh. And maybe this is because it comes from Hilfiger, but it does remind me of a toned down, slightly peppery Tommy.

There's nothing earth-shattering here and the longevity isn't that great, but it is a pleasant and fresh juice for day time casual/outdoor use.

Recommended age: teen and up
Recommended season: Mid-Spring/Summer/Early-Fall
08th April, 2011

Halston Z-14 by Halston

I agree with those who would say this is a love/hate fragrance. I've gotten compliments while wearing it, but my own nose is conflicted. I love the sweet & spicy, fresh lemon blast of the top notes and opening of this fragrance. The combination of the notes gives it an orange scent to me, but it's not overwhelming.

What I can't really get into, and what will likely turn off the younger crowds who are more into aquatics, is the smokey-leathery base. I've smelled other leather scents, such as English Leather, and if I were going for a leather base that is the kind of leather I'd like. It's warm and creamy. Halston's leather is harsh and biting to my nose. The smokey haze surrounds the cologne nearly the entire time you're wearing it and I wouldn't mind it much if the leather weren't there.

Good fall/winter scent, but avoid if you don't like leather in your fragrance.

EDIT – I have to issue an addendum to this review simply because of my evolving understanding of this fragrance and what the notes are trying to do. While I still love the opening of this fragrance, I’m pleasantly surprised that I’m starting to get more into the middle of it. I believe the “biting” that I was speaking of above is the effect of the melding together of the cinnamon and vetiver in the middle. I’m sure I smell other things in there, but I’ve especially noticed the cinnamon and vetiver. It almost seems like the cinnamon is trying to “hide” the vetiver, but the vetiver is peeking around the edges of the cinnamon. I’d started noticing the vetiver note in other fragrances that I have (Very Sexy, Miracle Homme) and so I’ve been paying more attention to it in this one.

I still hold the view that this will likely turn off younger crowds because of the middle/base, but my own nose has warmed to it quite a bit since I’ve started to understand it a little more. It’s surprising what a little knowledge will do for you. I have to change from neutral to thumbs up. All in all this is a stout fragrance. And the price tag is extremely inviting.
06th April, 2011 (last edited: 18th August, 2011)