Reviews by odysseusm

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    odysseusm
    Canada Canada

    Showing 181 to 210 of 1239.
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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.

    14 October, 2012

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    Oolong by Zents

    Here's the notes on my sample card: lime blossom, lavender, petitgrain, oolong tea and green tea.
    Quite soft and sweet. Very feminine in style, also young.
    Smells like a bar of creamy floral soap. Pleasant.
    Don't get any tea notes.

    14 October, 2012

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    Fig by Zents

    Not what I expect from a scent labeled "fig". No green leafy notes, no coconut cousin notes verging on creamy.
    Instead, this is spicy with a warm jammy preserves opening. Quite Serge Lutens in style. Veers into a heavy musk and lipstick case scent. That I don't care for at all. Eventually it settles into a warm and somewhat pleasant scent.
    But it is not something I'd seek out.

    13 October, 2012

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    Mandarin by Zents

    A pleasant little scent, conveying mandarin orange in a realistic way. Very mild verging on innocuous. Aside from the merest hint of ginger, where are the spices? Missing in action. Such a wee little scent might suit a beginner perfumista, perhaps someone under 16.

    11th October, 2012

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    Ore by Zents

    This is a soapy-clean, simple (even innocuous) scent. It has very light violet notes. Delicate, slightly sweet, feminine in style. It gets a bit sweeter and heavier in the dry-down. Nothing special, nothing problematic.
    Looking at the base notes, I half expected a bay rum chord at some point. Nope, nowhere to be found.

    10th October, 2012

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    Rume by Slumberhouse

    Notes: bay leaf, myrrh, labdanum, clay, cola, filbert, hay.

    The comparison to Serge Lutens is very true, this is definitely in that style (sweet, powerful, dried-fruit).
    The website has a fanciful description, "pralined fur laced in dark red spice" -- and that did not cause me to look forward to the trial in happy anticipation. :(
    It is very sweet, intensely sweet, aggressively sweet. It is like dried dates steeped in warm, spicy rum. That may sound attractive to some -- to me, not.
    There is a clay-mineral note behind the sweetness.
    Very quickly a coumarin note appears to suggest hay and cured tobacco.
    The scent gets more interesting as the uber-sweet blitz burns off.
    This becomes a very gentleman's club sort of scent: it evokes images of humidors, polished wood furniture, pipe tobacco, old leather books.
    Very powerful... and yet I don't find it to have longevity. Essentially done in an hour for me.
    Not my style, but more problematic for me was the relentlessly sweet opening.

    04 October, 2012

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    Artemisia by Penhaligon's

    Head Notes: Nectarine and Green Foliage
    Heart Notes: Green Apple, Lily of the Valley, Jasmine Tea, Violet and Vanilla
    Base Notes: Oakmoss, Sandalwood, Musk, Amber and Vanilla

    Very, very sweet. Smells like a makeup case. Powdery. Very feminine in style.
    Seems a bit old-fashioned or old-school, like something someone's auntie might wear.
    Pleasant for its style.

    03 October, 2012

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    Encounter by Calvin Klein

    It's new, and it's bad.
    Not good-bad, bad-bad.
    Intensely sweet. Drugstore cheapo. Wretched attempt at spices. Boozy notes are ghastly. Wood notes are non-existent. Cloying, heavy, clumsy. Musk is overdone.
    Can't see any redeeming features here.

    03 October, 2012

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    L'Hommage à L'Homme by Lalique

    Notes: wood, oud, saffron, chili pepper

    The bottle is classy -- a replica of an Art Deco Lalique bottle.
    The scent is nice. The saffron and pepper give a dusky-dry quality which balances the sweeter oud and wood notes. The scent starts off very subtle, with a kind of white-shirt note. Quickly it gets bigger, as the oud and saffron assert themselves more. I'd say be careful and don't over-apply this, it will grow.
    I don't get any violets or tobacco leaf. I'd argue that the piercing note is pepper rather than violet, and the dusky note is indeed due to the saffron. But I can see how this combo could suggest those sort of notes.

    02 October, 2012

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    Eau de Cologne by Chanel

    Notes: petitgrain, neroli, bergamot, herbs, spices, musk, vetiver.
    I'm underwhelmed with this. Admittedly, it is in the EdC style which should simply be citrus and herbs with an anchoring base. Everything here is competent and pleasant, but in my opinion nothing is outstanding -- which I'd expect in the Exclusifs line.
    The scent starts with good orange blossom notes. It is round, smooth, and not as crisp or vibrant as some EdCs I've tried. A larger application yields some lemon notes, but they are not really prominent for me. The scent is still very round, and now there is a touch of wood from the petitgrain. The herbal and spice notes are very faint, perhaps rosemary is the only one I could even begin to distinguish. The dry down has a modest vetiver note, and reminds me of a paler version of Sycomore.
    So, as noted above, this is pleasant but does not distinguish itself from other and more pleasing EdCs at a lesser price.

    01st October, 2012

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    No. 18 by Chanel

    Seems very similar to No. 28 -- a dry powdery iris, here with a touch of ambrette. Crisp, metallic. Arguably less interesting for some reason, seems to lack the depth of 28. More metallic than 28, not a selling point. Bit like pencil shavings (old cedar).

    29 September, 2012

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    No. 22 by Chanel

    I am speaking of the Les Exclusifs de Chanel version here.
    Very sweet and perfumey.
    An old-school sort of ladies' scent. Bold and assertive (and slightly fizzy due to the aldehydes) floral notes. Quite dense.
    The vanilla is strong but tempered well by an interesting incense note.
    That incense note moves this into my neutral zone -- otherwise it wouldn't appeal to me at all.
    Much too strong and weighty for me, even to enjoy on someone else. But that incense note is pretty good.

    29 September, 2012

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    28 La Pausa by Chanel

    Cool, silvery-white. Like crisp paper and moonlight, yet also has an earthy quality.
    The earthy note increases as the top notes burn off. Very classy and sophisticated.
    Develops a peppery note in the dry-down.
    Restrained, elegant, translucent yet has substance.
    Slight woody-vanilla note emerges, which adds complexity.
    Also something like celery leaves or anise -- a kind of haunting herbal note.
    Would be a great white-shirt scent for a guy.

    29 September, 2012

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    Elie Saab Le Parfum by Elie Saab

    Lovely powdery orange blossom. Pretty, very feminine in style. The honey adds a note of richness and depth without excessive sweetness.

    29 September, 2012

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    Pear + Olive by Slumberhouse

    Too sweet for me but it is OK as a scent.
    Quite fruity, like tinned fruit cocktail with a heavy emphasis of pears. The massoia bark brings a coconut note. Has a clean, soapy-shampoo drydown.

    28 September, 2012

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    Ares by Lord's Jester

    Notes: flowers, woods, greens, ambers, resins.

    This ok. Not brilliant and for me not bottle-worthy. But ok.
    It starts fairly sweet and floral. When those notes settle down some resins and herbal notes emerge. These improve the scent considerably. It is powerful, and still fairly sweet. Woody notes appear, these are acceptable.
    The dry-down mellows and resolves the more aggressive notes, winding up in a herbal-resin scent.
    Acceptable.

    28 September, 2012

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    Demeter by Lord's Jester

    Here are the notes from the website: dark pine cones, spices, blossoms, hay and tobacco, resins, fruits and wine notes.
    It is meant to suggest a forest -- though Demeter was not the Greek goddess of the forest but rather the fields and grain (Roman equivalent was Ceres, the goddess of cereal grains).

    When I see juice this orange-y, I get misgivings. I suspect a nose-blasting powerhouse. Be careful how you spray, quite certainly this would stain clothing.
    This has very spicy and hay-tobacco notes. It is quite sweet, at times with those sweet fruits-and-wine notes. It also is quite woody. When I read pine "cones" I thought that was a mistake, but now I agree that this scent has a woody-barky note like big ol' pine cones left in the sun. The intensely woody note suggests a wood shop more than a forest.
    Basically this is too sweet for me to endorse, it has too much hay-tobacco for me to even appreciate. Lots of sweet coumarin, probably from tonka. The final dry-down is very rich and honeyed, like clover honey. Some might like it, I don't.

    28 September, 2012

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    Idylle by Guerlain

    This is a very pretty, gentle, young-style floral. Lots of roses in a big bouquet.
    Sweet, but that's no surprise. Soft musk, romantic and young at heart.
    Attractive, feminine.

    27 September, 2012

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    Jive by Jive Parfums

    It is really hard to find any information on this. I got this as a sample, tossed in with a perfume I ordered online. It seems to be from a company based in Paris.

    It is a fresh, somewhat green scent. Light crisp floral notes. Spring-like in character. Perhaps a hint of rose. Not heavy or cloying.

    There's nothing wrong with this. Perhaps it is a bit generic but it's generally pleasant throughout. I suspect it is aimed at a young, female market.

    26 September, 2012

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    Florabotanica by Balenciaga

    This is a nice new scent. Forget the gender designation and marketing -- this is unisex.
    It is intended to be a "floral oriental" but I don't get any heavy, rich notes in the dry-down -- so the "oriental" descriptor is a bit of a misnomer.
    This is a nice floral -- dry, green, fresh. It is not sweet at all. The light mint and gentle clove note from the carnation give a zesty-dry quality to it. It conveys a clean, bright tone and a slightly soapy quality (in a pleasant way). The green notes keep wafting in and out. The scent is subtle but effective.
    The bottle is funky and the packaging is colourful.
    I like it.

    26 September, 2012

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    Blackberry & Bay by Jo Malone

    I recognize that Jo Malone is a sorta layered fragrance thingy. But I think that it we cannot judge the scent on its own merits as a stand-alone then that is unsatisfactory.
    Blackberry and bay is an example of this problem. The elements individually here are good, and the combo is rather nice. But the scent is so weak and attenuated that it barely registers. It doesn't make a convincing impression.
    It has a crisp pink grapefruit opening which is accurate, very good, and arguably the strongest moment of the scent. In style it is crisp, refreshing, juicy and appealing.
    The other potentially interesting notes -- bay leaf, vetiver, cedar -- are SOOOOO weak that one has to douse liberally and even then the scent really barely registers. Believe me, I don't like powerhouse scents but c'mon... I like to have the scent register on radar.
    Very sheer, light, inoffensive.
    The scent has a pleasant, close-to-the-skin drydown of considerable longevity.
    There is nothing to offend here. Perhaps as a starter scent for the young set this would work. Like, under 12 years old. A cheery, innocent, wee little scent.

    25 September, 2012

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    Velvet Rose & Oud by Jo Malone

    Rose and oud are a classic combination, and they are done well in this scent.
    The rose is accurate but not cloying. The oud is bright and has a slight edge, but it is held in balance with the rose and compliments it and gives it a mysterious and languid aspect. This is not a challenging oud, it is a comforting one.
    Fear not -- the clove is very subdued and adds the merest spice note. The "praline" -- well I couldn't find it and that suits me fine as I don't like foody notes.

    23 September, 2012

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    Vikt by Slumberhouse

    This is an excellent scent, my second favorite of the line (after Norne).
    Allegedly containing "dark balsamic woods, sweet metallic oils, soft smokey agar woords, and syrupy bronze resins". I find that cluster to be a reasonably accurate description, though the scent is less sweet and dense than the description suggests.
    It is woody and resinous, and very green. It is quite aromatic, with a balsamic note so fresh and appealing that it verges on coniferous. The so-called metallic notes are there, but they are not sharp or unpleasant, rather they add a coolly bright "bite" to the scent. Probably from the agarwood. And there are lovely sappy notes as well.
    It wears very well on my skin.

    22 September, 2012

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    Baque by Slumberhouse

    This is a fine scent. It is not my style (a bit sweet, a little too powerful) and I don't gravitate towards tobacco notes. Yet I find this to be a very high-quality and distinctive product.
    It has a fairly sweet opening of stewed fruit and sweetgrass/straw. A very accurate tobacco leaf note joins the chord. It is lovely, with a honeyed spice character. The scent has huge sillage even in the early going. Other layers develop in the dry-down. A touch of vanilla (which is so well done that I don't mind it), more coumarin/hay, and then finally wood. And very good wood it is too -- I can smell the grains of wood.
    Well done.

    22 September, 2012

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    Grev by Slumberhouse

    Now this is interesting. I'm quite acutely aware of cloves. In tiny doses they add a good barbershop note -- but I agree that they can be powerful and dominate a scent.
    That being said, "cloves" never entered my mind when I tried this scent. I agree that ultimately it gets too powerful and tiresome to suit me, but the reason for me (based on its reaction on my skin) has to do with the orris root rather than the spice.
    The scent starts with a great deal of promise. It is an aromatic green, and initially not as powerful nor dark as others in this house. It starts very herbal, with a strong note of mint and rosemary and also conifer. It develops a dusky and somewhat sweet note. This develops further into a very buttery, fairly sweet note, with leather, rooty, toasty, nutty, violet and floral notes -- in other words, the powdered orris root. This is a note I've never relished. The note gets sweeter and more powerful, dominating and ultimately squandering the herbal goodwill I've had up to this point. It does not wear well, it gets tiresome and irritating, and ultimately I wash it off.
    Promise in the short term, failure in the long term. :/

    21st September, 2012

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    Jeke by Slumberhouse

    Very woody, very intense. Extremely powerful, one little dot exudes clouds of scent for hours.
    Cade - birch - smoke in abundance. Conveys a very "men's club" atmosphere of leather, cigar humidore, rosewood-polished furniture. Extremely masculine in style. Fairly prominent coumarin-hay note in the dry-down.
    A little rich for my blood but I give it thumbs up for its swagger.

    21st September, 2012

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    Blu Mediterraneo Fico di Amalfi by Acqua di Parma

    I think this is a nice fig scent.
    It starts with good citrus notes, which quickly change to the peachy sort of notes typical of bergemot. These have good duration, and combine well with the leafy and stalky notes of fig. The scent is refreshing and pleasant, and green. Everything is in balance and it is not sweet. It wears well and has good longevity. Simple, clear, basic perhaps but well done.

    16 September, 2012

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    Acqua di Parma Colonia Intensa by Acqua di Parma

    Basically this is a fine scent. I have one small quibble with it, which I'll mention at the end.
    It starts with a very brief citrusy EdC opening. There are some herbal notes, and then a soapy quality which is pleasant. It quickly moves to a leathery note, which is the accent feature of the scent. This is meant to be a masculine version of the Acqua di Parma Colonia, so leather - wood - spice is ramped up. I'd say that a very very gentle leather note with hints of spice and fainter hints of wood is what is delivered. Everything is very mellow and gently subdued here, and it is quite charming in style.
    My one quibble is this. The scent isn't really an "intense" version of the classic Acqua di Parma Colonia. It is substantially different -- fine in its own right but different. It should be called Acqua di Parma pour Homme. The "Colonia" suggests something that isn't there.
    But aside from the nomenclature, this is a good scent. Very smooth and classy.

    16 September, 2012

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    Norne by Slumberhouse

    This could be my holy grail scent -- it is that good.
    The notes include pine needle, fir, hemlock, and some kind of lichen - fern - moss combo. The scent boasts of containing only "forest absolutes" with no EOs or synthetics. The style is designed to convey "incensed coniferous woody resins."
    Comparisons have been made to O'Driu, and I agree. Powerful, quirky, resolutely "green" -- both have those in spades. However, I'd say that at least Norne is more attractive, even beautiful, than anything I encountered in O'Driu.
    It starts with an incredible conifer note. It is so bracing, intense, tingling with energy. It is what I have seen as the Platonic ideal of conifer. The moss brings a coumarin/hay note which adds to the complexity. In style the scent is cool, brisk, lively -- exactly what I've been looking for. This is for green fans and it is boldly herbal -- like mint at times, or eucalyptus, or henna paste. Woody notes like rough bark emerge, yet the scent remains very, very green. The scent is NOT mainstream at all: it is powerful, quirky, distinctive and quite charming. You can tell this is constructed from absolutes -- it conveys the highest quality and seems utterly natural. The highest commendation.

    15 September, 2012

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    Rosissimo by Les Parfums de Rosine

    I've tried a few scents in the Rosine line, and up to this point did not care for any of them. This one changes my opinion. I think it is quite nice.
    It starts with very good citrus notes. These soften into a gentle white floral note, which quickly deepens into a pleasant rose note. The rose is authentic but not heady-sweet, quite suitable for a scent aimed at the male market. A soapy-clean sort of note develops, along with a light leathery note. These are all pleasant.
    This is not a stunning scent, but it is quite attractive and works well on my skin.

    14 September, 2012

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