Perfume Reviews

Latest Perfume Reviews

Total Reviews: 127601
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Poppy Rouge by D.S. & Durga

The opening with its whiff of freshness is overpowered by an aldehyde cloud, resulting in a somewhat unexciting generic opening phase. Soon thing improve though, and a pleasant basket of violet and other floral notes, especially immortelle, make the drydown an agreeable flowery mix, that is, surprisingly, never really very sweet.

The floral tune continues into the base, where a pleasant and soft civet is present, but the most interesting component towards is a rather sparingly applied vanilla. Vanilla is mostly applied as a thick and rich sweet power note, but here it is just sprinkled in and blends in very subtly. The last hours are so close to my skin that I have to dig my notes into the subcutaneous tissue to notice it, but the last phases have a lovely balsamic undertone with a very spurious powderiness.

The sillage is moderate, the projection initially good and then towards the end abysmal, and the total longevity about ten hours.

A mildly-sweet floral, and less sweet than, for instance, Dior Homme, with a disappointing start but then picking up, although not reaching above the ordinary overall. Still, nice in spring in the drydown particularly. 2.75/5.
31st May, 2016

Désarmant by La Parfumerie Moderne

What an inebriating classy fresh creation is it!!! Muskiness, radiant-bright floral grassiness and resinous soapiness are in here (by a modern cleaner approach) provided with the top level of neo-classic grandeur. La Parfumerie Moderne Desarmant strikes me immediately with its flashback of something classically musky-chypre and aristocratically floral. Yes, a jump back at time of my youth with its huge background of floral-chypre conjurations waving helter skelter on my nostalgic mind. I detect in here elements reporting in my mind scents a la Ysl Paris (the effervescent general green-floral sense of hyper class and the musky/aldehydic/honeyed soapiness balancing the initial angularity of bitter leaves and grass), the more recent Floris Royal Arms Diamond Edition (a similar structure, a marked ylang-ylang's presence, a similar musky-rosey-powdery dominance anyway finally mastered by an iris/violet royal presence) or Giorgio Armani Onde Mystere (rose, ylang-ylang, musk, laundriness, resins). There is anyway probably something far more familiar in the air which I'm not unfortunately able in this moment to connect to this Corticchiato's piece of hyper refined vegetal-musky floral. Lilac, osmanthus and rose are heady and royal in here, providing a general sense of freshly-musky floral courtisan refinement. Rose (probably connected to hints of benzoin and frankincense) provides a tad of fresh subtle soapiness while the muskiness is waving all around, supported by vegetal grassy patterns and well modulated resins. Gradually a sort of dry-fresh darker ambery/honeyed powder starts taking the stage with a role of co-protagonist (even supported by this magnificent fresh floral bouquet basically mastered by the supreme elegance of trio rose/lilac/osmanthus). There is a general sense of musky-incensey-rosey (soapy) "neutrality" which I've yet detected in Onde Mystere and in several fresh musky floral parisian accords of the past. This musky-floral neutrality is supported by a dominant ylang-ylang (really notable in here) sapiently flanked (by the alchemic work of an insuperable connoisseur of classic perfumery like Corticchiato) to musky resins and florals in order to project all around a supreme level of neo-classic sophistication. Ylang-ylang (supported by exotic spices) enhances this widespread sense of soapy-cosmetical dreamy subtleness. I appreciate the specific realistic projection of each single note (to me easily noticeable as individual part of a perfectly orchestrated soapy-musky-floral composition). Yes, each single note seems clear in its peculiarity but as part of an harmonious amalgam. I detect in here as well the Corticchiato's landmark musky association of rose and osmanthus we've admired in Osmanthus Interdite but while in that accord the "fluidy" freshness seemed mostly provided by a green-tea's presence in here you can detect mostly this fresh accord of musk, lymphatic-leafy floral presences and resins. The final issue is simply gorgeous, devoted to tradition (classic, measured, lofty and luxurious) but at same time surprisingly modern, radiant and joyful. Highly recommended.
30th May, 2016 (last edited: 31st May, 2016)
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Boston Ivy by D.S. & Durga

After admission first few minutes, when a somewhat bland citrus impression hit my notes, the full gamut of the opening notes develops: a green, herbal and woody combination evolves, a successful mix that evokes the outdoors.

Later in the drydown the ivy note arrives, a note of green bushes and convincingly done. At times slightly spicy clover-laden moments come and go, citrusy whiffs of lime alternate with more ozonic impressions.

The drydown takes on earthier mossy characteristics, but the moss is not the real thing and fairly flat on my skin.

All this reminds me of the likes of Geoffrey Beene's Bowling Green or Crown Perfumery's Town and Country, but less refined and less intensive than especially the latter. Boston Ivy is less rich and more restrained.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and eight ours of longevity on my skin; after that the occasional transient glimpse of a slightly balsamic afterthought remains for another few hours but it is too close to my skin to be counted.

This is a nice spring scent, and whilst not without its weak points it is overall a successful realisation if what he name promises. The ingredients are mostly of respectable quality. 3.5/5.
30th May, 2016
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L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme by Guerlain

I enjoy some sweet, modern synthetics, and L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme (2004) is not a world away from Polo Red (2013), to my nose, although I prefer the Guerlain.
30th May, 2016

VV Man by Roberto Verino

This is a surprisingly good scent. This is a linear scent to my nose. I also find that as the scent heads towards the dry down it becomes a drier woody scent. I do like it a lot and find it to be a pleasant fall / winter scent. Enjoy!
30th May, 2016

GrigioPerla Hedò White by La Perla

La Perla Grigioperla Hedo' White is a pale gingery-tonkinian synth accord "good at chess and no slouch at bridge, either". While the "classic" (just a tad less mediocre) Grigioperla Hedo' is a sultry (I'd say somewhat cloying) synth amberish/tonkinian patchouli this White brighter version pushes the accelerator on the longer (lasting till the base) citric/gingery/cardamomish introducing accord pretending in here to prolong throughout the Hedo's initial twist of freshness (finally in the "original" Hedo' absorbed by a sweetish chemical powdery-musky and ambroxan-dominant sultriness). What can I add? Ginger, grapefruit and cardamom unfold a sort of watery-aromatic kind of lemony dominant feel (just minimally supported by a soothing benzoinic muskiness). This is a mediocre and more than generic designer fragrance with any trace of originality or sophistication (and how much I regret the classics Grigioperla and La Perla), with a dominant cedary-lemony freshness, a subdued patchouli (compared with the "first" Grigioperla Hedo') and a final pale muskiness. Not a bad juice di per se' but something kind of "lost with no hope to survive in the relentless ocean of the market".
29th May, 2016 (last edited: 30th May, 2016)

Nebulae 2 by Oliver & Co.

Fresh, citrus, woody. Conveys a clean sensation like an Eau de Cologne but is very powerful and longlasting. Others in this category include Jardin du Poete and Eau Radieuse. Masculine or unisex.
29th May, 2016
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

The Architects Club by Arquiste

The opening is a very nice citrus woodsy combination. This citrus is mainly orange with a good dash if lemon and more on the dark side, not al all refreshing but constituting a good accompaniment to the wood notes. The wood has a dried timer, a somewhat papery characteristic with touches of guaiacum and oak wood, and it all blends in very smoothly with the fruit side in the opening. A slightly boozy juniper accent is noticeable in the background.

In the drydown a medium-dark vanilla emerges, answeet that has definite presence but is not going it solo initially; but with time is moves into the foreground. That would not be bad thing as such, but the other notes are gradually fading away, and the vanilla remains, paired with a rather uninteresting ambroxan impression.

I get moderate sillage, fairly adequate projection and six hours of longevity on my skin.

This creation for cooler spring or warmer autumn days is a divided scent as far as the overall impression is concerned: the first part is nice indeed, a citrus/woodsy combination with a twist. The second part is more linear and far less interesting. Overall this results in a neutral score, unless some extraordinary quality or performance elevates it into the next tier, but I cannot see any such redeeming grace, except for the fanatic vanilla lover who adores everything that includes vanilla. On the whole this just misses the mark. 2.75/5.
29th May, 2016

Oudy Woody by Surrati

One screechysombitch on the open! The olfactory equivalent of fingernails down a chalkboard. There are well-constructed perfumes and then there are just scents... honestly, this is a sledgehammer of a just scent and I'm OK with that.

If you've ever had "a scrubber" then this type scent is probably not for you.

Even for those ready and willing for a lumberjack type adventure, this pungent leathery wood may please, yet may still be a little too abrupt and jarring for some. Kind of like riding your favorite grandaddy of a wood roller coaster after riding the new age steel rail monsters all day. It'll throw you around like a rag doll if you forget to remember the differences. It's good that "rickety" is still an option though and, yes, the lumberjacks I know like to ride roller coasters.

Surrati could just as easily have called this Leather & Oud. Upon settling it reminds me a little of Al Rehab - Oudy OIL. Same feel to me, at least, and about the same value as well.

1 or 2 sprays, tops. Please! How much lumber would a lumberjack jack if a lumberjack could jack lumber? The answer: Surrati Oudy Woody.
28th May, 2016

Oudy by Al Rehab

The oil and spray come off as two entirely distinct scents. Both are good, linear, minimalist, and last.

OIL is barnyardy with emphasis more on the wood and hay and less on the fecal however there is a definite edge to it. If you've ever worked poplar cottonwood for firewood, that smell approximates... roughly. A little corky too, of the dark brown chunky pinboard variety.

SPRAY is a pepper & sandalwood.

Given my tastes, two of the absolute best values I found upon the journey. Glad I made the effort.
28th May, 2016

Vetiverus by Oliver & Co.

I'm surprised nobody has commented on the strong costus note in this, although I suppose it's not that well known a material. I don't like costus much which is why this is not among my favourite perfumes. Nevertheless Vetiverus is, like many of Oliver's fragrances, a well executed and interesting creation.
28th May, 2016
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Nanban by Arquiste

A black tea note in the opening blast sets the scene, with a spicy element in it that is soon softened by a fairly dark saffron. Early in the drydown a very good coffee impression a arises, a darkly roasted and rich coffee that gradually replaces the tea.

Later in the meddle notes an incense develops with some waxy styrax component present that fits in quite nicely, and at stages takes on a balsamic characteristic that is not very medicinal in nature on my skin.

The base has a somewhat dull sandalwood note mixed with a leather impression. Initially the leather is a bit weak, but with times it grows into a dark old country boot-like impression with hints of tannin and smokiness detectable at times.

As far as the performance is concerned, I get moderate sillage, excellent projection and nine hours of longevity.

This is a very pleasant, rich and deep winter scent, with tea, coffee and leathery notes providing a nice accompaniment to the open fire place in the lounge room. The quality of the ingredients is high, and they are well-blended. A traditional concept but executed with original touches. 3.5/5.
28th May, 2016
kewart Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Aqua Allegoria Flora Nymphéa by Guerlain

I love wearing this pretty, green, floral scent in the Springtime. It does seem to attract the bees (sadly) but I will continue to wear it because the drydown is so appealing. On my skin the honey note is prominent (hence the bees!)
28th May, 2016
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Liberty Island by Bond No. 9

I tested Liberty Island on a blotter at Harrods Bond Counter 4 weeks ago.

The fragrance had a fresh spicy floral aquatic feel which was indeed very soothing.

I look forward to trying it on my skin soon for a more accurate review.

Thumbs up!
28th May, 2016

Jules by Christian Dior

I have a mid-vintage bottle of Dior Jules, in the clear ribbed glass, and I am a fan. On the first wearing, I was worried that it may be too subtle, but a couple more wearings have revealed a steady performance and winning smell.

"Russian Leather" is listed as a note on this site, and it does remind me of Chanel Cuir de Russie, especially in the opening. It also reminds me somewhat of Chanel Antaeus, more so in the base, which was released a year after Jules.
27th May, 2016 (last edited: 28th May, 2016)

Oscar for Men by Oscar de la Renta

A great scent... huge bang for your buck here. The only draw back is that both bottles that I have owned seem to seep / leak from the top... which makes the bottle slightly sticky. Over all the scent is great. Above average longevity and projection. Nice citrus start with some peppery notes and herbs with a sweet musky dry down. Online and in stores this is 20 dollars for 3.4 oz bottle. Enjoy!
27th May, 2016

Gap Blue No. 655 Him by Gap

Decent spring summer scent for the Gap / mall crowd. Inoffensive low longevity and projection. The scent itself is good start and ends with a fizzle. My 7 year old son loves it though...
27th May, 2016
Oviatt Show all reviews
United States

Eau de Shalimar by Guerlain

It is always a risk, messing with a classic--especially one as iconic as Shalimar. Eau de Shalimar achieves its goal of being a lighter, fresher version of this classic oriental. The top notes are lifted with a bright and light lemon/lime/bergamot note--literally good enough to eat--and the base notes are relieved of some of the tonka and rich incense (resin notes are listed instead of the traditional opoponax) but the rest is pure Shalimar. The vanilla is still there since it wouldn't me Shalimar without it. This is not a watery scent; it has more freshness than classic Shalimar but is still an Eau de Toilette and has excellent lasting power. Great for Shalimar wearers in warm climates or for those who do not want the heavy French formality of the original but love the citrus/floral/incense/vanilla dream that is Shalimar.
27th May, 2016

Mouchoir de Monsieur by Guerlain

Same powdery Guerlain accord. Not bad but am getting tired of it.
27th May, 2016

Mollie Parnis by Weil


The peach, coconut and galbanum are too loud and are the notes I am not a big fan of. Perhaps that is why I dislike Devin too.
I get some jasmine, orange and mogra but again not well balanced.
Dries down to peachy- coconuty mess.
27th May, 2016

Vent Vert (original) by Pierre Balmain

Vintage:
Vent vert starts green. A flower field that has been recently pruned,mowed and mulched. The green from broken branches and the floral smell of flower complement each other.
I get Galbanum, Jasmine and Peach.
This is Green done right.
27th May, 2016

Weil de Weil by Weil

Vintage:
Galbanum is done right here. The first hour is a perfect combination of green and floral. This hour is one of the best representation of spring
After a few hours though it veers off-script and becomes soapy.
27th May, 2016

Cabotine by Grès

It reminded me of YSL Paris a little. Rose and soap and peach.
The dry down is good and floral but nothing original. Smells like a typical Bank of England smell.
27th May, 2016

Chamade by Guerlain

Vintage Version:
This is a great fragrance especially the first few hours. It smells like valley of flowers - a valley that is a bit far away from your wooden cabin and as you wake up in the morning the smell wafts in bringing with it a promise of a new day.
Soft and radiant smell of flower and amber. Muted galbanum and nothing loud.
The drydown (6hr later) is disappointing. It veers off the theme and I smell inky incensy notes along with gurelain's signature powdery accord.
27th May, 2016

Léonard pour Homme (original) by Léonard

Not my favorite. The incense and artemisia kills this one for me.
Too dry for my taste.
27th May, 2016

Eternity for Men by Calvin Klein

Long ago I avoided reviewing this and several other fragrances simply because they had plenty enough reviews already. Now I feel compelled to throw in my two cents because of how my perception has changed over the years. Until now I never quite realized how very 80's the heart and base are, losing myself in the lavender and calone opening. But the bitter greens and white florals, on closer inspection, are more akin to scents like the original Burberrys than the wave of herbaceous aquatics that followed Eternity's release. Heck, I never even noticed there was vetiver in this composition until today. I have always liked Calvin Klein despite their many shortcomings (CK Free and Encounter spring immediately to mind), and Mr. Klein and I share a birthday (Yippee!), and I feel this release deserves its level of fame- It is synthetic yet potent, a bit screechy if over-sprayed, but is layered and nuanced in a way which seems to be fading from the common release. My one caveat is that the current version in production is -maybe- 65 percent the strength of the original.
Thumbs up for the original creation and a watered down neutral for the schlock currently on the shelves.
27th May, 2016
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom

L'Etrog Acqua by Arquiste

A run-of-the-mill general citrus - lemony impression - on the darker side and not really refreshing - with a dull herbal undertone is followed by a generic woodsy drydown with whiffs of an unexciting patchouli in the base.

This sounds trite? It is; very much a routine product that is generic with standard synthetic basic blending - pretty much an olfactoric non-event.

The sillage is moderate, the projection adequate and the longevity five hours on my skin.

Maybe for spring or not at all. The only good thing is the marketing - but can we wear that? 1.5/5
27th May, 2016

Arabico by Farmacia SS. Annunziata

Farmacia SS Annunziata Arabico is a stunning revelation on my sucking skin. First of all I need to say that there is something fresh-warm, spicy, virile, kind of organic-pheromonal, piquant, resinous and cozy that typifies this (otherwise apparently common) woody-hesperidic accord (I detect something conceptually similar, or partially similar, in scents a la 7 de Loewe or Creed Aventus); this special twist is something "earthy-sartorial", dusty-peppery and freshly urban but at same time classically spicy and exotic, a spark of class and italian spicy-rooty-peppery sophistication. This little fire is constantly paired by a quite freshly aromatic presence (fresh lavender and vetiver) which is not only citric and vaguely barber-shop (or classically fougere) but at same time fluidy-incensey (a watery frankincense's rendition), herbal, spacious and vaguely tropical. Patchouly (growing up progressively) and musk (so sophisticated and soapy) are heady, immediately followed by lime, pepper/cardamom, exotic spices and "splashing" frankincense. Complex (almost cacophonous) spiciness and silky soapiness run side by side. Woods are here but it is the combination of spices, patch, hints of "intimate" dry smoke (a la Creed Aventus) and resins to make this juice great, modern, sensual and extremely elegant. Lemony cardamom is a remarkable constant and I wonder if minimal hints of fresh and dry tobacco are included in the blend. The Arabico's kind of man is "modernly classic" (italian contemporary high tailoring), traveller, perfectly trimmed, freshly smelling and self-confident. This one could be a quite bold and sensual piece of perfume for the "seaside southern resorts-seducer", a juice which could appeal the typical Creed Aventus-lover but at same time all the lovers of highly spicy fresh and exotic fragrances a la Frapin L'Humaniste or Cartier Declaration (Arabico makes me thinking at a sort of warmer and more erotic Declaration on my skin). Yes, I agree about the ordinarily synthetic perception (Iso E in particular, with a sort of sporty shower-gel kind of undertone) but this juice is surely far more since its multifaceted articulation on skin (with its plenty of spicy, resinous, earthy, hesperidic, floral and woody nuances) gives glory to the whole daring experiment (a classic, basically "yet runned", formula newly revisited in a special modern elegant way). A pity for the just moderate projecion which slightly tames the potencially higher boldness of an (anyway) undeniably daring juice.
27th May, 2016

Forbidden by House of Matriarch

Thumb's up, only just, because Tuberose Indolic has my stomach tighten, my brain gasping for oxygen as it tries to push it's way out of my sockets.
I am forced to scrub.
Funny because Jasmine Indolic has the whole of me wrapped up in the rapture of Oxygen rich clouds and an overwhelming calm and Peace.
Before I scrubbed I was able to recognize a pleasing Woody Base, hints of fungi and of course a intoxicating blast of dry Absinthe.
26th May, 2016
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