Reviews by odysseusm

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    odysseusm
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    Oxford Street by Hugh Parsons

    I'm slightly above neutral on this, but only slightly. It is an OK scent, certainly not problematic apart from a slight sweetness.
    Essentially, it is a citrus - spice - soft powder sort of scent. The spices give a clean, somewhat barbershop vibe. If you don't over-apply, the spices are gentle and the wood is light. There is a definite note of oudh, here it is sometimes exactly like wet cardboard, other times it gives an interesting and slightly bitter medicinal note. The patchouli (if the scent is lightly applied) is not a problem, not heavy, and gives a mild earthy-rooty brown note. The vetiver and the herbs could have more prominence, in my opinion.
    The spices are nice enough to warrant a cautious endorsement from me.

    03rd December, 2012

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    Volutes by Diptyque

    Top: iris flower, honey, tobacco, dried fruits
    Mid: pink pepper, black pepper, saffron, hay, immortelle
    Base: opoponax, myrhh, styrax, benzoin

    Very well done for its style.
    Quite sweet and perfumey. The silvery iris note is elegant. Honey and tobacco give it a rich, substantial feel. Some of the sweetness burns off, but the richness persists. Languid hay notes give it a very relaxed feel. All the sweet biscuity and vanilla notes don't appeal to me, but I'm sure that many would like this.

    30th November, 2012

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    Leather Oud by Christian Dior

    This is a very well designed scent. I say that because I don't usually care for leather scents, and oud is an acquired taste which I still grapple with. But I like this, and here's why.
    This starts with comforting, warm spices. The leather is attractive, and the oud is distinctive but not eccentric. The overall effect is very masculine, confident, and suave. The woods are very well done, realistically woody but not just a lumbershop, something more complex.
    Everything is in perfect, complimentary proportion.
    The early drydown is smoky, powdery and a bit sweet.
    The later drydown gets more substantial and sweeter. Thus, I'd say go easy on it until you find the amount which suits you throughout the day.
    Leather/oud fans need to check this out -- and even those on the fence should give it a try.

    27th November, 2012

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    Cologne Royale by Christian Dior

    This is a nice EdC in the classic style: citrus-herbal.
    The citrus opening is lovely and realistic. The mint is a light herbal, suggesting lightly-crushed leaves rather than toothpaste. This is a very light, sheer scent and it is enjoyable. It quickly moves to a white musk note which sits close to the skin.
    With more application, more of the citrus and herbal notes remain and mingle with the musk. The mint is cool, refreshing, works well with the musk and is an interesting twist on the classic EdC style.

    27th November, 2012

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    Nuit Etoilée by Annick Goutal

    It is a pleasant scent but nothing extraordinary. I don't get anything of a a starry night, a walk through the forest, the crunch of snow... none of that. I don't get any pine nor fir, and that is why I sought the scent out to sample.
    What I do get is a lemon-mint opening which is fairly nice, though it has a slight detergent-fresh vibe. Then there is a toasted nut and honey chord, probably from the angelica and immortelle. There is a very vague woody aspect, 'way off in the distance, in the dry-down.
    This does not call out to me.

    24th November, 2012

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    L'Eau Froide by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    This is a very pleasant, minty-cool citrus scent. It has quite a lemony opening. This settles into a soapy, clean sort of scent due to the musk. It is rather minimalist, low-key... the antithesis of most Serge Lutens scents which tend to be dense, sweet and foody. The mint and pepper give a refreshing 'bite' to the scent. It would be a good summer splash and wears well (in a very, very restrained way).

    23rd November, 2012

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    07 Tanoke by Odin New York

    I like it a lot!
    This is a great peppery-spice, woody scent with some very good incense notes. The incense is very similar to that in Heeley Cardinal, but the overall scent is a bit drier and has a really nice pepper note. Indeed, all the spices (ginger, nutmeg, and pepper) are very well done and give a masculine, barbershop vibe. It wears very well and is completely satisfying.
    Update -- the 5 stars continue... a rare occurrence for me. Very, very satisfying scent, possibly my favourite incense. Starts with an assertive wood note. Quickly is joined by frankincense and a bit of oudh. Very well done, even evokes the smoky note of burned incense. Spices add a pleasing frame. Very dry, substantial yet translucent; not sweet or heavy in any way. Superior to Heeley Cardinal, the closest analogue.

    22nd November, 2012 (Last Edited: 09th September, 2014)

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    Eau de Cypres by Comptoir Sud Pacifique

    The sweetness is the only thing that pushes this into "neutral" -- otherwise this is an interesting scent.
    It is a woody wonderland! VERY woody indeed. A dense scent, with a dense sweetness. I'd say that cedar dominates of the pine and cypress, unfortunately from my perspective.
    I like cypress for its resinous, coniferous notes. I get none of that here.
    Old and heavy wood. Good wood, but sweet and a powerhouse.
    I should note that this is a discontinued scent, and that my sample probably is quite old. So some of the bright citrus notes have retreated, perhaps also the rosemary-mint freshness.
    There is a bit of coconut and nutty-buttery notes from the patchouli.
    This is a fascinating relic, a bygone style of CSP before they got locked into twinkie-vanilla bonbons.

    11th November, 2012 (Last Edited: 22nd November, 2012)

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    J Casanova pour Homme by J Casanova

    Very powerful! Assertive, quirky, not mainstream. Oddly appealing in a rather strange way.
    It has a very, very aromatic and crisp opening. Green in a steroid-induced fantasy manner, with strong (very strong) soapy notes.
    Herbal in an exponential manner (squared, cubed, something)... thyme. Yet the aquatic note adds an equally powerful cool note, almost minty.
    Extremely synthetic in style, in part like a hot baby powder bottle left on a car dashboard for an extended period.
    Also a very powerful, clove-like note. Kind of medicinal-minty-spicy. Folks, there's clove here, regardless of what the notes suggest.
    Yet -- not unattractive. Oh my this is far too strong for me but it (aside from the testosterone level) actually kind of interesting. If it could be attenuated by about a factor of 100 I'd probably like it.
    powerhouse fans -- this should be on your list. :)

    10th November, 2012

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    Armani Privé Cèdre Olympe by Giorgio Armani

    Revised review
    This is a lovely scent, I like it a lot. The opening has great citrus notes. The bitter orange and bergamot are detectable and distinct, and together make a complex, spicy chord. The lemon tree leaves add an interesting note, sort of plump, green-leaf and intriguing. There are hints of conifer and wood, freshness and brown bark. The dry-down is commendable as it retains all of these elements and puts them into a gentle, smooth, suave package. At times there is a slight soapy aspect which I like. Very enjoyable to wear.
    I'm sad to report that this gem has been discontinued.

    09th November, 2012 (Last Edited: 14th October, 2014)

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    Eau de Fleurs Capucine by Chloé

    Juice is a light green colour.
    A green scent. Juniper-aromatic and tart green apple. Light herbs. Not sweet or heavy. Perhaps a bit thin but it is a light summery splash sort of scent. Refreshing. Definitely no problems here.

    08th November, 2012

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    Eau de Fleurs Lavande by Chloé

    Slightly purple juice, just in case we didn't know this was lavender.
    Floral and green. Pleasant, and NOT sweet or heavy.
    Soft and cuddly. Light and pleasant.
    Absolutely nothing here to offend.
    Don't get any developed lavender notes, but otherwise an OK scent.

    08th November, 2012

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    Kapsule Woody by Lagerfeld

    Aromatic in a sweet-fruity way. Highly synthetic verging on metallic. No natural greens here. Quickly becomes tiresome.

    04th November, 2012

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    Kapsule Floriental by Lagerfeld

    Uggh, much too sweet! Violet should be a piercing silvery note, ivy leaf should be crunchy-green, black tea should be tannic and interesting.
    None of the above. A pralined bon-bon. Vanilla and amber. Bleh.

    04th November, 2012

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    Kapsule Light by Lagerfeld

    A pleasant spice scent. Not sweet, not heavy.
    Generic but acceptable. Don't get any bitter orange.

    04th November, 2012

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    Multiple Rouge by Humiecki & Graef

    Ozone!!!
    Fruit loops!!!
    Frosty spice!!!
    Gee, lets sing along with Justin Bieber as we skip down the lane...
    Wretched stuff.

    01st November, 2012

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    Eau Radieuse by Humiecki & Graef

    Smells like a tropical fruit candy or chewing gum or a fruit punch.
    Quite fruity with some odd unripe green notes, fairly sweet. Citrus - check. Mint - check.
    It is not ghastly but it is rather bizarre and not appealing.
    Too quirky for a young person, too juvenile for anyone over 18.

    31st October, 2012

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    Askew by Humiecki & Graef

    I think it is a very interesting scent. When I saw the ingredients of spice, birch tar, and leather I feared that it would be a heavy brute. To the contrary, this is a restrained and somewhat cool scent. It has hints of sweetness and ginger spice. It is cool, even somewhat aquatic in style. The leather is quite restrained and the birch tar adds the merest smokey and woody note. Unfortunately, there is also a faint whiff of wet cardboard here, otherwise I'd give it a thumbs up. Still, I think it is worth checking out.

    30th October, 2012

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    Armani Privé Pierre de Lune by Giorgio Armani

    I can endorse this scent. It is not my style, but I find it has many attractive points and is well constructed. It starts with a very authentic violet note, and some perfumey-green notes. It is not too sweet. The florals are slightly rich but not cloying. The iris is buttery and opulent. There's lots going on here. The amber thankfully is very subdued. Overall, it is a pretty and attractive scent, probably of more interest to women than man. What is intriguing is that it does achieve a kind of silvery-cool aspect in the dry-down. How appropriate for a "moon stone."

    30th October, 2012

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    Armani Privé Eau de Jade by Giorgio Armani

    This is an attractive scent.
    It starts with a very good trio of bergamot, orange/neroli and pepper. The pepper has a good bite, and the scent is crisp and appealing. At this point it has a sort of green tone and so 'jade' is an appropriate name. Gradually the orange notes get a bit woodier, and the scent takes on a creamy-soapy character. There are dusky hints and something a bit like iris or smoke. Intriguing and appealing.

    29th October, 2012

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    Orange Flower & Lychee by Kiehl's

    Meh.
    very sweet and fruity. Tinned fruit cocktail. Rather syrupy.
    Where is the orange blossom?
    This is not a horrible scent but I have to say it has little to commend it.

    24th October, 2012

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    Les Lilas by Florascent

    This is a soft, perfume-y floral. It is a reasonable approximation of lilac flower -- which is a difficult scent to convey. The scent is lovely, sweet and feminine.

    23rd October, 2012

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    Nashi Blossom & Pink Grapefruit by Kiehl's

    Notes: nashi (pear) blossom, pink grapefruit, mandarin orange, ginger, soy mil, white musk.

    It starts with a very realistic and tasty-smelling chord of grapefruit and orange. These become softened by a light floral note and the merest hint of ginger spice. The scent settles into a creamy white musk which is a bit sweet and is certainly delicate and pretty. At times it suggests warm pears (faintly) and at other times a mildly woody note.

    22nd October, 2012

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    Vanilla & Cedarwood by Kiehl's

    Well, here I am reviewing a dreaded vanilla scent.
    The things I do for Basenotes.
    It opens with a sweet vanilla note. No surprise here. The vanilla dominates. I can't detect anything else. Certainly no wood.
    A SA told me this is the most popular of the line. Obviously vanilla is a comfort scent for many people. Not me -- it is a discomfort scent.
    Eventually, the broad-shouldered and aggressive vanilla steps slightly back, and perhaps very, very faintly I can detect a silvery-earthy iris note.
    Still no wood. :/
    And still much too sweet.

    22nd October, 2012

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    Fan di Fendi pour Homme by Fendi

    The card on the sample vial identifies "tangerine from Sicily" as the citrus and "cedarwood from Texas" as the wood.
    Sweet opening, quite sweet. Sugary. Some lemony citrus notes as well.
    Spices are more evident than the herbal notes.
    As the sweetness burns off, the wood notes start to appear. They are OK, nothing amazing and are not very woody.
    Don't get any leather but I'm not a fan of leather anyway.
    This is a decent scent, acceptable if you like things slightly on the sweet side.
    Seems generic to me, nothing special to stand out.

    18th October, 2012

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    Touch of Blue by Wild Flowers

    WHEW! Having tried "Touch of Pink" which is dreadful, this is a decent scent.

    A simple herbal-vetiver, but not cloyingly sweet and with the satisfying cushiony aspect of an intelligent vetiver. This is OK. Fans of Mugler Cologne will see a clone here. So be it. Simpler, but OK.
    This is not a brilliant scent, but it is better than Pink and thus the thumb pointed skyward for a while.
    What moved the thumb sideways is the flat character and the sweet dry-down which is densely floral and relentlessly sachrine.
    A big let down in the final analysis.

    17th October, 2012

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    Touch of Pink by Wild Flowers

    Pretty, sweet, a young person's scent. Under 14 I'd say.
    Not floral -- more in the candy-berry fruity mode. Hyped-up strawberry.
    Very young in style, intensely sweet,
    Solid, dense. no layers.
    A lollipop.

    17th October, 2012

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    Potion by Dsquared2

    Interesting. Not my style (too sweet and heavy) but certainly interesting.
    Good wood notes appear almost immediately for me. Substantial spices with a pronounced sweet tone. Rose notes are here, but they are synthetic rather than natural in style -- and quite powerful. Vanilla-amber in the drydown. The whole thing reminds me of Penhaligon's LP No. 9 for men: a similar vibe.
    I'd never wear it. But it's ok if you like sweet spicy scents. And the wood is pretty good.

    16th October, 2012

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    Fig Leaf & Sage by Kiehl's

    Props to this for trying to be an interesting dry herbal scent.
    The citrus opening is very brief, really a lightening flash.
    The fig is very green, stalky-woody and also leafy. No creamy coconut here.
    Unfortunately, the fig and herbs quickly turned into "cooked celery leaves" on my skin. This note is powerful and not particularly attractive.
    Long-term dry down is ok, when the celery leaf burns off. A quiet thyme sort of herbal.
    Try it, it may work better on others.
    Amazingly powerful for this type of spritzy scent.

    15th October, 2012

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    Artisan Black by John Varvatos

    There sure are a lot of notes listed. Puffery, in my opinion. It is actually a very simple scent.
    It has a good citrus opening. Then it quickly moves to a very dry, cool, "airy" chord. Synthetic, a bit detergent-y -- reminds me of the scent when one opens a freezer door.
    The base has some frosty leather and patchouli notes.
    I can't work up any enthusiasm for this, nor disdain.

    14th October, 2012

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