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drseid Show all reviews
United States

Lômusk by Santi Burgas

Lomusk opens with relatively transparent synthetic musk, quickly adding in a slightly sweet fruity accord before moving to its heart. As the composition enters its early heart the synthetic musk and modestly sweet fruity accord co-staring pair remain as salty synthetic ambergris begins to creep into the mix. As time passes the salty faux ambergris becomes the sole star of the composition as it grows leaps and bounds in its intensity with the original co-starring pair now all but absent. During the late dry-down the salty synthetic ambergris remains star as a brunt rubbery undertone joins in support late through the finish. Projection is on the low side of average, but longevity is outstanding at about 15 hours on skin.

Lomusk really is a poor name for this composition as the real focus is ambergris. There really isn't much to say about the development as the composition stays relatively linear throughout, keeping the focal ambergris in the spotlight, featuring its salty aspect quite heavily. This is kind of the base you might expect in a lot of ambery aquatics and the like, except many of those have a lot more going on to keep one's interest where Lomusk seems to really just be a faux ambergris base sold as a standalone composition. One should keep in mind that Santi Burgass compositions are supposed to be able to be worn combined just as readily as by themselves, and Lomusk is probably the most obvious candidate for this kind of use. That said, as it is sold as a standalone composition it will be evaluated as such, and when looked at this way it is a simplistic synthetic salty ambery concoction that is relatively unappealing. The bottom line is the 89 Euro per 50ml bottle Lomusk really smells like it should be called "Loambergris" to this writer, staying simplistic and boring through the finish earning a "poor" 2 stars out of 5 and a strong avoid recommendation. If one likes faux ambergris when used as a base, Lomusk may have some use with other compositions in the Santi Burgass range to complete the package and improve the overall result. This writer, however, is not interested in this kind of overly salty presentation in any form so it is a big miss.
23rd May, 2015

parfums*PARFUMS Series 1 Leaves: Calamus by Comme des Garçons

Comme des Garcons Calamus is a "bamboo based" green (or better...musky) concoction with a plain vegetal fleeting aura, a central mild-floral synthetic muskiness and a touch of soapiness. Frankly I dont find at all this juice refreshing (celery grains and angelica root fail in order to provide a veritable freshly botanic vibe) and on the contrary it seems to miss on my skin a really green-fresh or woodsy aromatic feel. I catch by soon the bamboo's "languid" influence (somewhat mineral, suave, mild, vaguely ozonic, floral, fluidy, "peaceful") which smells delicate, musky, vaguely lacteous-lymphatic and rosey. The greeness is just initial and it seems by soon floral and vaguely edible-culinary. My perception (after the ephemeral green opening) is by soon the one to catch anyway a typically synthetic/chic soapy-musky-rosey "atmosphere" (vaguely a la Eliee Saab Le Parfum) on my skin and a combination of synthetic ethereal (somewhat rosey) balmy notes, a touch of vegetal undiscerned "syrup" and patchouli. Is pretty perfect what rogalal writes before which I'm respectfully going to quote " It's naturalistic but doesn't smell like anything in nature. It's chemical but still smells like something alive". The dry down is flat and with a poor structure despite still suave and deliciously soapy-floral (a water-lily's presence?). Calamus seems a fragrance heralding a pure platonic love in the futuristic age of soul perdition, its aroma is evocative about left back diaphanous instants of purity emerging up from your fairy babyhood. Poor longevity on my skin.
23rd May, 2015

In Leather Man by Etienne Aigner

In Leather Man by Aigner is hands down the worst leather fragrance I’ve ever tried. Even taking into account the really cheap price, for me it is still just desperately obnoxious, and completely unworthy *any* price. It opens with a harsh, extremely artificial nondescript smell which I think should be aimed at evoking leather, while it clumsily smells more like a car under the sun – not a particularly rusty or dirty one, just a normal car with that really boring smell of plastic, metal, rubber, cheap imitation leather. I think I get some musk, some components similar to what other manufacturers know better how to use for leather accords, and something ambery; it may sound decent, but the result is just a disaster for me. It’s not leather – actually for me this is really nothing at all. The drydown arrives quickly, light and sweaty. Until now I used to consider as the “worst leather fragrances” the ones which just uncreatively reiterate the same usual aromachemicals (e.g. suederal, safraleine ecc.), but at least, they smell “leather”. This smells just nauseating nonsense for me. If you want to stick to this brand (God knows why) I recall Aigner Black being a little more decent and more similar to an actual leather scent.

23rd May, 2015

Smoke Essence by Goti

Smoke by Goti smells to me basically like Comme des Garçons Kyoto with a synthetic boozy-resinous note and something slightly fruity enhancing the warmer and sweeter side of (synthetic) incense. Balsamic and mentholated, smoky and sweetly warm, with a decidedly “aloof” and contemporary vibe as you may guess by the packaging. And a really nice, subtle yet surprisingly true to life and “living” woody accord. Really easy to like and wear... even too much, maybe; for this price and this market positioning I would personally expect something more than such a “friendly”, and honestly not that impressive sweet-minty incense. I mean: it smells great, refined and stylish, but also a bit redundant among the plethora of similar, and often cheaper offerings - and in my opinion a bit unnecessarily hipster too (this including the packaging and the retail channels they chose for distributing this – again, just a personal opinion regarding expectations vs. reality). The juice per se is highly enjoyable, bracing and versatile, with also a slight and I guess involuntary connection to Gucci Rush Men on the drydown – so yes, I would surely grab it if I found a half-priced bottle; it is just something a bit less “unique” and interesting than it may seem at first.

23rd May, 2015

Or du Serail by Naomi Goodsir

Why do perfumers, as the shapers of our consciousness, have such radically different approaches to the path of creativity? Simple, because they are not creative persons! They are domesticated dogs to different masters!

Naomi is a designer, an original one, as designer she has her style. Her thought is not a kind of approaching to her mindset, she is not problem-focused, she’s solution focused, and action oriented. This involves both analysis and imagination. In this case, she has analyzed and imagined her perfume, but was unable to make its design! For this the scent seems a way that she should go back to get to the end of the problem, to the solution: Or du Serail. It looks like a road leading to her and not to depart from her!

I don’t know if there is a mood in this perfume, as the harem, or the gold, or if she was thinking about Topkapı Palace! It is impossible to understand! This is my point of you: here are working a creative person (Naomi) and a partime superhero (Batman).
Naomi (and) Batman made a selectio of raw materials, here is the yerba mate (ilex paraguariensis)! It seems mate or something like this one! The result is the same of Zebra Jungle by Kenzo (1998)… The notes of bitter mate perhaps frighten everyone, and everyone seems to want to restore the balance of the perfume with tobacco or wood, honeyed scent and a little 'of synthetic flavorings to adjust the drydown! Zebra was focused more in citrusy and woody notes, but the result is the same nonsense. What mate need? Benzoin, tonka and ginger! This could be the canvas on which to express your art, Naomi.
This is the story!

"And that concludes our presentation of the Batcave’s team. Any questions? Any orders? Yes, you the chick with strange clothes!."

"So you say you know how to use the mate?”

“Of course, the bat-mate!”

“And your bat-cave is right under Bertrand Duchaufour ‘s house?"

"Yes it is, a right bat-observation!"

"And the only entrance is through a staircase connected to Bertrand Duchaufour ‘s house, right?"

"Bat-right again!"

"So... May be you are Bertrand Duchaufour, then?"

"Ah! MM! Well, that's an interesting bat-question with a pretty...HOLY SHIT SMOKE BOMB!"

Batman throws smoke bomb and runs off…

“I fear that we can forget the mate!”

23rd May, 2015

Join The Club : Ascot Moon by Xerjoff

Xerjoff Ascot Moon is surely one of the finest and classiest pieces of the Join The Club Collection. This fragrance strikes us by soon since it smells somewhat classic and lacking that typical soapy-spicy/exotic balminess characterizing almost all the further juices of the same Collection. Well it seems that the Ascot Moon's inspiration is related to horse Clubs and to the hippodrome's atmosphere. The opening is by soon classically hesperidic/aromatic and almost minty. It seems to assist to another ordinary eau de cologne's evolution (possibly bergamot, coriander, verbena and stuffs like these swirl in the air and it seems to detect a touch of vetiver too). Anyway, over less than five minute the aroma evolves significantly, we start catching by soon a rising pungent woodsy resinous presence (fir resins), a tad of rootiness (probably patchouli and cedarwood) and finally a musky accord of leather and mossy galbanum. The leathery presence increases its strenght along the way and it seems to be "supported" by red berries, smoke (increasing along the way) and finally a touch of frankincense. The leather in here is not so far (just a tad more prominent) from the Micallef Royal Vintage's herbal leathery combination (stout, earthy, still herbal-aromatic, spicy-resinous) while the whole accord seems to derivate its main inspiration from another fragrance yet, the "insuperable" Geo F. Trumper Eucris which has been along the decades source of inspiration for a huge amount of following olfactory "experiments". The resinous presence is notable in its combination of rubbery, incensey and sticky woodsy "ingredients" despite along the way the aroma starts turning out more and more smoky, dry and restrained. On the complex I find this fragrance quite well appointed, it is classy, really virile and more than distinguished despite we can find in here originality or much less uniqueness.
P.S: along the way, in its final trait of evolution, the "smoked rubber" vibe seems increased and this effect seems conjuring more than vaguely several Santa Maria Novella Nostalgia/Profumum Arso's nuances.
23rd May, 2015
drseid Show all reviews
United States

Lôjazz by Santi Burgas

Lojazz opens with a banana-like tuberose and relatively sanitized jasmine floral duo. As the composition moves to its early heart the tuberose and jasmine florals remain as co-stars, adding lemon tinged magnolia and green violet additional floral support with a slightly sweet orange flower undertone. During the late dry-down the tuberose, violet and magnolia vacate, leaving remnants of the jasmine to pair with traces of the supporting slightly sweet orange flower through the finish. Projection is very good and longevity average at 7-8 hours on skin.

After being relatively disappointed with most of the Santi Burgess samples I really had low expectations for Lojazz going in. I am happy to write that while Lojazz is not going to set the world afire with innovation or top quality raw materials, at least this offering from the generally disappointing Santi Burgass house smells good. Jasmine and tuberose very commonly paired in perfume, and Santi Burgass wisely goes with the tried and true for Lojazz. Even though the composition is supposed to presumably feature the jasmine with a name like "Lojazz," it is actually the tuberose that is more prominent to my nose through the mid-section. Joining the starring pair is key violet support. Most of the time violet comes off as powdery, but in this case the perfumer chose to feature its less oft used green facet, with the choice working here. The biggest letdown is the late dry-down as it primarily features the jasmine, but the ingredient is so sanitized there really is not a lot of character once the character adding tuberose is gone. At the end of the day, Lojazz is a pleasant composition that I certainly enjoyed wearing but as with the rest of the Santi Burgass offerings it just is not interesting enough to keep my attention long-term over other offerings in its crowded genre. The bottom line is the 89 Euro per 50ml bottle Lojazz is probably the best offering in the sub-par Loant Collection, but while it earns a solid "good" to "very good" 3 to 3.5 star out of 5 rating it just doesn't distinguish itself enough from the pack to keep one's attention long-term warranting a purchase. Minor reservations aside, Lojazz is worth a try at least for jasmine and tuberose lovers in particular.
22nd May, 2015

Cabaret Homme by Grès

So after YSL came up in 2003 with that fantastic time-machine called Rive Gauche pour Homme, here’s Bourdon composing one year later another decidedly old-school, completely non-fashion fragrance for Grès. The quality isn’t really comparable in my opinion, but neither was the price, as I guess Cabaret was way more cheap; the inspiration though, that was quite similar. Cabaret pour Homme is basically a sort of fruitier, slightly more “contemporary” take on Van Cleef & Arpels' Tsar: that same type of formal aromatic fougère structure, played with a couple of added or, say, “renovated” chords – notably fruits, a floral-green whiff, also something like amber or labdanum “warming” it up a bit, with also a subtle sort of tobacco-incense aftertaste. At once fresher and warmer. Take Tsar and imagine it sweeter, a bit younger and more “informal”. Basically like putting a baseball cap and a Supreme t-shirt on your grandpa. Openly “uncool” and slightly naif: I love that. The quality isn’t really top-notch for me, but it isn’t totally bad either; Cabaret smells nice and versatile, “manly” in a slightly dated way with just a hint of warmth and modern tints.

Also, it has a sort of really well-played feel of “luxury” which is as much fake as enjoyable, like a well-made counterfeit Rolex replica. Actually it’s fascinating as it smells at the same time heavily cheap on some nuances, but somehow the overall look is good and the composition seems clever enough to “disguise” the cheapness. Anyway I can see why this is overlooked, as it sits right in the grey nowhere halfway a classic aromatic fougère and a more modern “office-safe” woody-spicy-fruity-smoky scent for contemporary men; but it’s at once too modern and too sweet for fans of classic fougères, and surely still too outdated for the average contemporary taste. And there’s the “appealing-to-nobody” trap. It’s a shame because it is instead a really decent and enjoyable blend of these two inspirations, which makes you feel wearing something mannered, classy and mature enough but with a more relaxed, playful, less “austere” vibe. Miles away being a creative piece of art or a “compliment getter”, but give it a chance if you stumble upon it.

22nd May, 2015
Emoe Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Diaghilev by Roja Dove

i got given a sample of this when i got Roja Aoud, and was informed it was a stunning frag which i should definitely try.
Jack Hunters review below is spot on, i dont think i can add anything to it!
22nd May, 2015
Emoe Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Embers by Rouge Bunny Rouge

ive only got a sample of this, so its based on a very small amount.

Name sounds a bit strange, and probably slightly femme, but the scent itself certainly isnt, it would take a strong lady to pull this one off.

straight away from the moment you spritz, the incense smoky twist is noticeable, quite strong which may put some people off, but bear with it!

after ten or so minutes, it starts to level out, the strong bonfire incense flavour mutes down, and becomes nutty, still smoky, but not the sickly throat burning smoky you get with some. its also not the Tobacco smoke style, which sometimes can be ashtray like.

i find it just very slightly boozy, with a rum/whiskey type accord peeking out now and then, which is nice and subtle.

overall, its got a good head, hangs around for a relatively good time, but isnt a projection monster, which i think would kill it. its a fragrance you can wear out at night, and folk would need to be in your vicinity to smell it, and would probably find it intriguing, mysterious.
22nd May, 2015

Alfa by Mendittorosa

In the end, everything is a gag.
Charlie Chaplin
22nd May, 2015

RED + MA by Blood Concept

The secret to making money isn't working on an artistic project, it’s finding creative solutions for stupid people, and it doesn't take a fancy degree to do that. To get your creative perfume you need: money, PR, and a clerk/nose. Have you them in your pockets? You’ll also need more general financial advice on fashion as well as some money-making ideas for kids. The arts entertain, educate, delight, and enrich. This perfume has a great value, in fact it represents the focus of controversy, contention, and debate about artistic, political, cultural, and ethical matters.

Tomorrow, at lunch with Santa Claus: vegan lunch for the reindeer.
22nd May, 2015

Mistero by Calé

All things need the right balance!

The disposable that has characterized the '60s has unaccustomed people to perceive and preserve the real value of material objects that surround us.
The old time, however, was characterized by actions and thoughts which affected strongly the sense of "beauty".

This perfume is certainly a great example of "disposable"! In the sense that once you've bought it, you spray it and then you throw it away as a natural consequence.
In reality, if you will throw it away you'll be doing good to the niche perfumery.

In Italy most of the current brands are inventions of prominent distributors. In fact if you are the number one in the Italian market with a scent of success (for example, Creed) and all the retailers want this one, you just have to invent your own brand and you will have already included a lot of shops! If you want to eat good and sweet cakes, before you have to drink even the bad medicine!

Talking about this brand: there are two creators, Cerrizza and Buxton: the first one is a poorly used perfumer, the second is a perfumer poorly used.
In this perfumes collection you can smell everything and anything with a sense!

Reading an interview to Silvio Levi (the brand owner) about this perfume: “I created this fragrance thinking of Barry Trost, American chemist at Stanford University, and the Nose Guy Robert father of perfumes such Equipage, Caleche by Hermes, Madame Rochas by Rochas and Dioressence by Dior. Two great persons that have impressed me for their humility and humanity and who have been able to raise me believing in me. A perfume dedicated to those who are rich in their inner and not need to boast, whose keynotes are: oudh and basmati rice!” (

Basically, if you're rich inside, you can put on a scent with a traditional Thai dish smell! And your sex appeal would be a Mistero.
22nd May, 2015

Vanille Insensée by Atelier Cologne

Nevermind the insanity of the name, this is a pleasantly luminous vanilla-inspired scent with a fraction of the richness associated with the bean and none of the heft. A hint of spice, a touch of floral and a toasty paper-like crispness come together for a surprisingly interesting take on the genre.

Vanille Insensée smells to me like an improved albeit sweeter version of DSquared Rocky Mountain Wood with its warm floral incense vibes. Performance may vary with individuals but I can't personally fault its sillage nor projection as I find them excellent.
22nd May, 2015

Pomélo Paradis by Atelier Cologne

It's hard not to enjoy this scent. If you find regular grapefruit scents too sharp and zesty, Pomélo Paradis takes it down a notch with its juicy roundness. Like a refreshing sip from a chilled glass of lemonade, this is simple and unadulterated summery bliss.

Perfectly gender-neutral in appeal so top marks for wearability. Unfortunately it performs somewhat disappointingly on my skin, projecting minimally and dissipating all too quickly, drying down to a faintly vetiver-like skin scent within 30 minutes. Oh well, you don't always get the cake, I suppose.
22nd May, 2015

Indonesian Oud by Ermenegildo Zegna

Indonesian Oud by Zegna Essenze is different from any other oud I've tried. When applied lightly it is a very pleasant one. It has character, sings its own tune, imparts a difference to whoever might wear it. There is a tartness that I haven't seen in other oud fragrances, but the fragrance is excellent nonetheless. The notes listed are limited to: bergamot, amber, oud, patchouli, rose. I think I smell all of these notes. The aroma is sharp and medicinal with a warm leather note in the base. The bergamot - a Zegna trademark, adds a sangria tartness to the amber oud character while a hint of rose gives some warmth to the patchouli / oud leather aroma in the base of this fragrance. This is enjoyable but the intensity is either too strong at first, or too short lasting depending on the spray volume. If you spray less due to its strength, you lose some longevity. Best to go easy on the throttle with this bad boy and then refresh later if needed. My rating for Indonesian Oud is 3 / 5 stars and comes with a solid recommendation.
22nd May, 2015

Tabu by Dana

I tried the pure parfum and it turned this fragrance into a rich intoxicating, incensy, civet floral. Bold, yes. For evening only, yes. Slightly tawdry, yes. But in the right way, because this one has all the smolder you'd expect from this style, which means it can't be subtle. I tried less rich formulations and found them a little rough and cheap. But the parfum version... it becomes what it should be.
Older fragrances weren't skanky, they sizzled. In our day of sanitized hygiene, a fragrance that smells 'dirty' is daring. In the year Tabu was formulated, a fragrance that was overtly sexual was daring. I prefer this older style of naughtiness, this gaslight-tinged aroma of experience and availability. I think this one is the real deal, as it's able to send its intended message a century later, in an age of relaxed sexuality. Cheap... of course :) We all get its message.

It's longevity as a parfum is good. I think this is the formulation which is best, and probably the only one I would buy.
21st May, 2015
CoL Show all reviews
United Kingdom

Tommy Neon Brights by Tommy Hilfiger

This accidentally fell into my virtual shopping basket as it was less than 1/2 price and another £5 off. As always Lauder have produced a beautiful light peppery fragrance with a hint of ginger that instantly gives the impression of warm summer holidays. Very nice and will be a staple in my summer rotation for sure!

Just realised what it reminds me of, Chanel Allure Homme Blanche. Lovely stuff!
21st May, 2015

Lime, Basil & Mandarin by Jo Malone

The opening of Lime Basil & Mandarin by Jo Malone reminded me a bit of L’homme de Grès; that similar sort of really pungent, decidedly “virile”, kind of old-school and really bitter lime-green note supported by a woody, somber, almost chypre (in a really subtle way) base. At first the mandarin is not really there and neither is basil to my nose, but in a matter of minutes the bitter and fresh “head of the head notes” vanishes off and the fragrance starts to warm on skin – at that point you surely get a slightly sweeter, more aromatic-floral blend which seems comprising also something like neroli. Still no basil to my nose, weirdly enough I get thyme and sage more clearly; overall, basically a sort of aromatic green fougère centered on lime-orange with a subtle and to me, quite masculine woody-herbal-musky base smelling quite dark, slightly waxy and also slightly camphorous. And kind of “humid” too.

Also, I think I clearly get here the sort of aftershave vibe I get from many British fragrances based on classic structures (like those countless “West Indian Limes” colognes by Truefitt & Hill, Taylors of Old Bond Street and similar “gentleman’s grooming” brands) – although it may be just pure suggestion. Surely anyway something way less fresh than one may assume by reading the name. Overall, in my opinion Lime Basil & Mandarin isn’t bad at all, almost quite good actually; the only negative thing for me is that I get a whiff of something annoyingly and persistently synthetic that somehow “ruins the magic”. For me, citrus-green scents – more than others – need to be as much natural as possible to smell pleasant, fulfilling and compelling, to avoid smelling like floor detergents or cheap soaps. This doesn’t really make it for me, at least not entirely; it smells decently good, but I feel it would have been way better if part of the efforts was also financial - I mean in raising the budget and picking better materials. Still quite nice overall, just don’t expect something neither fresh nor particularly solid or refined.

21st May, 2015

Desire for a Man by Dunhill

This fragrance puzzles me. It smells at the same time pedestrian and refined,a bit tacky but immensely pleasant to wear. I think overall I lean to a positive opinion about this, making me think that Almairac did a laudable and really creative job with not-so-great resources at hand. What puzzles me here is that it took me quite some time to familarize with this fragrance and be able to even just get some of the notes. At first it was just an odd “whole” smelling at once massively generic, yet never smelled before – but I admit I may be just a bit relatively new to this side of “cheapos”, so probably it is just something I am not used to. Anyway what I get at the very opening is a thick, balmy, quite sweet but somehow perfectly wearable blend comprising fruity-powdery notes on a sort of dusty, dry, “greyish” amber and labdanum base. I get something soapy which I guess is rose, and something juicy and green-aromatic definitely smelling like apple. This first stage is quite bold and as nearly any other reviewer noted, quite heavy to the point of overwhelming. And honestly a bit cheap too, but in a tolerable, playful way.

The drydown on the contrary is really good, mellow and subtle but perfectly vibrant even after many hours. It is by far the best part of Desire for me, and it luckily arrives soon and stays there for hours; still “artificially” sweet but more leaning on a gentler, somehow “breezier” rose-wood accord, just scented with a restrained and perfectly gentle hint of fruit, echoing the dry, slightly sour woods of scents like Trussardi Inside Man, and the woody, slightly syrupy sweetness of Escada Magnetism for Men. Also, on the drydown there is a decidedly bolder presence of labdanum and amber with an equally sharp sort of soapy musk. I think I get something aldehydic, too. Again, really synthetic and almost tacky on one side, but inexplicably so enjoyable to wear, even refined. It may be just a suggestion, but I think I get some of the ideas Almairac used with more class (and probably more budget) ten years later or so for Bottega Veneta EDP for women; a really similar sort of sweet, floral, “gassy” dustiness almost “abstract” in its syntheticness. Not sure if Desire may be considered a “good” fragrance, all I know is that it smells really pleasant to wear, and overall quite distinctive and memorable. It reminds me of McDonald’s stuff – probably the crappiest materials around, but still I bet most of us love those sandwiches every time, and still pretty much nothing tastes like that (either in a good or bad way). Much powerful in both projection and persistence, so – use sparingly.

21st May, 2015
drseid Show all reviews
United States

Lôant by Santi Burgas

Loant opens with a blast of a vague synthetic blonde woody accord with a hint of underlying white floral jasmine. Moving to the early heart the vague synthetic blonde woody accord picks up even more steam, easily dominating the gentle nutmeg spice that joins the jasmine in subtle support with the overall effect showing a slightly boozy scotch-like facet to the synthetic woods. During the late dry-down the synthetic blonde woods remain the sole star, shedding their subtle floral and spice support through the finish. Projection is outstanding, as is longevity at over 15 hours on skin.

Another Santi Burgas sample, another disappointment... Loant can best be described in one word, cashmeran. Cashmeran is near certainly the source driving the synthetic blonde woody focus of the composition, and outside of it there really isn't much to talk about. On paper nutmeg spice comes more to the fore, but on skin it is pretty much all cashmeran, all the time. The only thing adding to the composition beyond the synthetic blonde woods is a slightly metallic white floral accord that comes off more prominent on skin than on paper, but always takes a back seat to the woods. I *will* say that the composition has some extremely impressive performance metrics, as the synthetics project and last big time. That said, if you are like me and really dislike the heavy use of cashmeran in compositions, excellent performance is a major negative. A friend recently reminded me that each of these Santi Burgas compositions is meant to be combined with others for a more complete experience and maybe Loant would improve if used with the others. That said, the cashmeran is so strong here, I can't imagine anything I could pair it with (Santi Burgas or otherwise) that would entice me to want to wear this stuff. The bottom line is the 89 Euro per 50ml bottle Loant is a cashmeran bomb plain and simple, and in the opinion of this writer that is a very bad thing, earning the composition a "very poor" 1 star out of 5 and an extremely strong avoid recommendation except for lovers of the primary ingredient who will near surely enjoy Loant immensely.
21st May, 2015

Polo Modern Reserve by Ralph Lauren

Neutral, leaning like.

There's something in the base that reminds me of two scents I do not like: Terre d'Hermes edt and Bond No. 9 Scent of Peace for Him.

It matches that with some woody sweetness that almost makes up for it.
21st May, 2015

Piccolo Amor by Cerchi nell'Acqua

Lovers of earthy-resinous "cultured/aristocratic" patchoulies....this can be your holy grail for real. Cerchi Nell'Acqua Piccolo Amor (nostalgic and candied as a childish dream) discloses the real magic of a ceremony at Court since is like you are immediately surrounded by dames, chandeliers, bas-reliefs, aromatic waxy candels, bronze armatures and by massive frames endowed pictures.
This fragrance is a perfect accord of earthy patchouli (spacious, vintage, organic, spicy, luxuriant, decadent), aromatic resins (honeyed amber, a minimal touch of olibanum, cool-minty forest resins) and musky vanilla. Scents a la Etro Patchouly o Kiori By Kiori jump immediately on mind but, while the Etro's one is all about a sharply exotic patchouli (just minimally soothed by a tad of balsams) and Kiori is pushing finally the accelerator on the woody vanilla theme, Piccolo Amor seems to set on skin the perfect balance between the two main elements (vanillic resins and patchouli), in here appearing at once resinous and earthy. I've tested dozens of scents based on this specific accord but I can dare to say Piccolo Amore is in the range of the very best, hours and hours of aristocratic pleasure, of "crystals", nobiliar luxury, dreamy nights, secret loves, whispers of seduction "wrapped" by the most mysterious of the nights at Ducal Building.
21st May, 2015

Ariel by Sammarco

From the notes I expected Ariel to be my least favorite in the Sammarco's range but it comes out I was wrong. Another extremely good fragrance and probably the most complex out of the four from this line.

The opining is a juicy citrusy-fruity thing pervaded by a sweet tobacco note. It quickly moves into a magnificent floral middle phase in which smooth white florals are paired to rose. There's also a soft powderiness going on, probably provided by the orris / violet combo, but nothing to worry about for me. Again, the overall quality is honestly undeniable and while I'm generally not drawn to these kind of fragrances, there's something so nailed about Ariel that makes of it something noteworthy. It's a familiar, classic accord that, at the same time, doesn't rely on nostalgia or old-fashioned themes. The white florals are plush and devoided of any angular facets but they still feel rough and visceral as opposed to overly polished and prettified.

The base breaks in pretty soon unveiling a sweet-n-dry sandalwood that I find completely intoxicating. Ariel strikes as an ageless fragrance, something that doesn't follow any trend or style, something that goes beyond genres while maintaining a relevant perfumey allure throughout. In this context, it's quintessentially perfumey and kind of a textbook-type woody-floral. My only complain about Ariel is that it gets pretty calm a bit too soon. Projection is really moderate after the initial phase even if longevity is decent, especially considering it's apparently an all-natural composition. With that said, I still find Ariel completely noteworthy and, composition-wise, probably my favorite in the whole range.

Note: It does miracles on fabric.

20th May, 2015
drseid Show all reviews
United States

Lôbitt by Santi Burgas

Lobitt opens with what can best be described as an artificial sharp sour lemon and tart grapefruit citrus hybrid with a tinge of underlying bitter orange. As the composition moves to its early heart the sour lemon and tart grapefruit citrus remain as the composition adds in a co-starring rotting orange peel accord to the mix. During the late dry-down the rotting fruit aspect of the composition dissipates, allowing relatively clean musk to emerge and mesh with the artificial lemon remnants through the finish. Projection is on the low side of average, as is longevity at about 6-7 hours on skin.

I am afraid this stuff smells terrible. The initial artificial sour lemon and grapefruit-like citrus tandem smells like PEZ candy, sans sweetness. Once you add in the rotting orange peel aspect, the end result is one of the worst citrus concoctions I have ever encountered. I have no idea why the perfumer would think this was a good idea, but all I know is once I am done writing this review the composition is getting scrubbed off pronto. The relatively clean musky late dry-down is much better, but why would one suffer through the composition just to get a bit of sensory relief as their reward? I wish I had more to say, but Lobitt does not merit it. The bottom line is the 89 Euro per 50ml bottle Lobitt is a disgusting mix of artificial PEZ-like citrus and rotting fuit, earning it a "very poor" 1 star out of 5 rating and an extremely strong avoid recommendation. What were the folks at Loant thinking?
20th May, 2015

Erdenstern by April Aromatics

Erdenstern is truly a different breed of natural smelling fragrance. Every time I wear it I am reminded of dried leaves or dried grasses but with a slight sweet chocolate and nutty aroma that smells sort of like a chocolate nut coffee cake. I think the whole fragrance evolves from the whirling universe of the tobacco note. Tobacco has a dried leaf aspect complimented here by the botanical musk and tonka bean. Cocoa and opoponox adds more sweet chocolatey warmth, while vetiver reconnects back to tobacco and leaves. Don't know if I want to smoke it or eat it. Erdenstern is warm, chocolatey, leafy, would make a great chocolate flavored pipe tobacco. In short, its an abstraction of pleasing aromas - a work of art. Enjoyable to wear.
20th May, 2015
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United States

Lôrose by Santi Burgas

Lorose goes on with a moderately sweetened candied light rose floral with a slightly sharp green synthetic smelling geranium undertone. As the composition moves to its early heart, the synthetic sharp green geranium takes the fore, with the now light and airy rose remaining sans most of its initial sweetness as significant support, joining subtle relatively sanitized patchouli. Moving further through its mid-section the geranium slowly dissipates and eventually vacates, leaving the light airy rose as sole star with the patchouli remaining in subtle support. During the late dry-down the rose loses most of its airy nature, adding in a very soft powdery, almost vanilla-like facet through the finish. Projection is excellent and longevity absolutely outstanding at well over 20 hours on skin.

As I sprayed my sample of Lorose on skin my first impression was that this was not a rose I was going to like much. The primary early culprit was the geranium, which comes off as slightly synthetic smelling with an odd, sharp green aspect that doesn't quite match the rose. If things stayed this way throughout, this would be yet another negative review of a Santi Burgass composition, but luckily things do indeed improve. Once the geranium slowly leaves, the rose is given a chance to really shine and indeed it does. This rose is of the light and airy variety, smelling very fresh like one just cut off the bush, only slightly enhanced by the deft use of subtle patchouli. While not normally mentioned, Lorose's performance is really impressive, with the composition hanging around well into the next day after application with stellar projection. In short, this is a good composition, but as there are so *many* good rose compositions on the market, being "good" really isn't good enough to set Lorose apart from competitors. Maybe if the perfumer would have jettisoned the geranium and the candied sweetness early this would have been more of a winner, but as it is, Lorose is a "good" rose composition swimming in a sea of similar quality offerings with only its outstanding performance metrics to distinguish it from the pack. The bottom line is the 89 Euro per 50ml bottle Lorose delivers big time on its performance metrics and smells very good once it sheds the remnants of its synthetic smelling sharp green geranium, earning it a "good" 3 stars out of 5 rating; but the composition never quite establishes a reason to buy it over other rose offerings and as such can't quite muster a recommendation.
20th May, 2015

La Via della Seta - Giada della Birmania by Compagnia Delle Indie

Compagnia delle indie La Via della Seta-Giada della Birmania is basically a spicy musky "bath-foam/deodorant like" perfume with fruity-citric accents. The presence of mellow fruits, sweet spices, musk and vetiver (overall entirely synthetic) arouses a really exotic-balmy fresh vibe. The soapiness is extreme and extremely fruity-rosey, it seems to catch a blend of wax, rose, mimosa, floral nectar, vanilla, un-distinguished spicy/mellow fruits and white musk. Really spicy, cinnamon and nutmeg are impressive. Anyway overall is a pure amalgam without a real structure due to lift this aroma up at dignity of veritable fragrance.
20th May, 2015

Vitrum by Sammarco

To understand art we need to investigate artists, their geniality and what is their dominant instinct. One is reminded of Camus: “When one has no character, one must have a method.”
Telling about Giovanni Sammarco, I tell first of all about a friend. He was an exceptional blogger (fragrancescout), he supported positions contrary to the vulgar marketing of perfumery, and he has inspired other Italian bloggers. He was also one of the first fans of O'driù, and this has been my privilege. Giovanni loves women with red hair, and once, during a lunch together, asked me to make a perfume particularly suited for red women's skin. Then I realized Xvert (pervert) in a limited edition, giving the first one to Giovanni. One day he asked me how to become a perfumer, I told him that the only way was to make perfumes, always considering yourself as an amateurs who is learning.
So, he takes his time (and his money too) to fulfill his dream. Such a person deserves respect, because, compared to many improvised perfumers, he has his definite idea. I tell you now that I don’t love his creative approach, but I also say that we need perfumers as Giovanni...
Commonly the perfumer still points at some external bullseye for our compassion, but more and more often it is the perfumer himself who is the one in need (either for his wretched past, or for his wretched attempts at perfumery). We do not need to cry for some dispossessed or wretched third party; we can weep our puddle of tears directly onto the perfumer. Giovanni isn’t a pathetic person! And this is a plus. He believes that the scent corresponds exclusively to the quality of the raw materials, and this can’t be an artistic approach.
His perfumes are good and well made, but nothing more! I think ultimately that Vitrum is a great scent, it is a transparency otherworldly, an old-new vision to be a perfumer. However this fragrance has no soul, and it seems only a onanistic path. The luxury of a perfume is the luxury of wearing an idea of art and not only good or bad smells! Only a non-artist would need to fluff up art with non-art.
But to get noticed now, you don’t need an artistic perfume, you need a relevance. You need a hook for a critic to hang a hat on. Even in "realistic perfumery", it is better to have a hook with a blogger than something to tell!
Giovanni! You need a blogger as you was!

So, although I do not like this kind of perfumery with only aesthetic values, I strongly hope that the phenomena as Sammarco grow and develop, because they would represent a different choice and a personal vision of perfumery.

Great Giovanni!
20th May, 2015

South by Mendittorosa

Mendittorosa South opens by soon with a spark of "aqueous" floral sophisticated sharpness (vaguely herbal aromatic) immediately embraced (finally along the way submerged) by a sultry-resinous (slightly spicy) cover of soapy-synthetic muskiness a la Elie Saab Le Parfum or stuffs like that (a step before a cloying status prevented due the fresher floral-herbal sophisticated-chic twist). There is a cedary ghost of synthetic (vaguely lacteous) creaminess (conjuring a couple of Dueto Parfums experiments) as lingering background pairing a soapy musky main atmosphere that projects a glamour-chic accord of lilac and chyclamen (somewhat transparent and angular). Probably peony and orange blossoms take also part to ceremony enhancing that alluring-chic twist (a la Chanel Allure), in here finally over-charged by a massive dose of chemical patterns, balmy vanillin and synthetic musk. Honestly my nose is unable to properly catch any hazelnut's presence but I suppose this element plays as olfactory artifice in order to well round and "orientalize" the aroma by a touch of tobacco-"darkly vanillic" veined final muskiness. Finally I feel the aroma a tad overly sultry, "pharmaceutical" and oppressive despite an undeniable warm sensuality and its hyper modern transparency. Anyway musk, creamy woods and soap are "assembled" and modulated in order to create this warmly floral embrace "outfitting" a contemporary type of "lounge bar" hyper branded young woman. Not for me.
19th May, 2015 (last edited: 20th May, 2015)