Fragrance Reviews from December 2008

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    xXjEnNyXx's avatar

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    Curious by Britney Spears

    Surprisingly, I like this scent. I really don't like buying celebrity endorsed perfumes, but I bought this one. This was sprayed on my arm at the mall and I really liked it. After sniffing for 20 minutes, I went back to the counter to find out what is was (shocked to find out it was Curious). It is a floral that has a crisp, clean, and fresh scent. It is light and not overpowering. Very pretty scent overall. The bottle was cute and I liked the scent so I bought it (I shocked myself). The only negative is that the staying power isn't very long, it lasts about an hour or two the most.

    15th December, 2008

    xXjEnNyXx's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fantasy by Britney Spears

    This bottle is really cute (pink bottle and rhinestones), but that is about it! This is WAY TOO sweet for me! It's like wearing pure candy (cotton candy to be exact). The bottle is elegant, but the scent is juvenile. It would be appropriate for preteens, but not grown women, then again, should I be surprised? I suppose the scent caters toward the Spears' followers, 12-17 year olds. I prefer Curious, which smells youthful and light, Fantasy smells like you just took a bath in sugar...yuck!

    15th December, 2008

    AnnS's avatar

    United States United States

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    Chypré Fruité by Montale

    This is a gorgeous fruit chypre - very sophisticated. It reminds me very much of a drier, salty, less boisterous Bagdley Mischka. It wears surprisingly light for such rich fruit accords. The sillage is medium, and lasting power good. I highly recommend this fragrance for those seeking a very traditional French chypre style perfume.

    15th December, 2008

    AnnS's avatar

    United States United States

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    Organza Harvest 2007 by Givenchy

    This is a beautiful, golden apricot-jasmine fragrance. Very feminine and lush with excellent sillage and lasting power. I only wear it in summer because it just feels summery, but it could be worn all year round since it is such a well balanced oriental. The fragrance smells very consistent, and the dry down becomes a powdery, ambery-vanilla floral. I highly recomment it for those who like good orientals. I think it can be worn all day, but some may prefer it for evening because of the lush oriental quality.( Note that it doesn't really smell like the original Organza. )

    15th December, 2008

    charger's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tokyo by Kenzo

    Starts with a mellow burst of ginger and citrus, but the top note doesn't last too long. Mellows into a cedar and spicy aroma. It smells nice and somewhat Christmasy, so I take this as a perfect time of year to wear it. Only gripe is it needs a few more sprays through the day to stay lively.

    15th December, 2008

    charger's avatar

    United States United States

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    Polo Explorer by Ralph Lauren

    I really enjoy this scent. On my skin, it started with almost a menthol/fruit/pine aroma, really smells clean yet myserious at the same time. dry down settles into a woody slightly spiced scent. After about four hours the scent is all but gone though.

    15th December, 2008

    Kolle's avatar

    United States United States

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    Millésime Impérial by Creed

    The melon note is marvelous, but the fragrance does not last on my skin, and projection is weak. Quite overrated.

    15th December, 2008

    fountaingirl's avatar



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    Eau Parfumée au Thé Blanc by Bulgari

    On first spritz, I get a bright, sharp note that is a bit unpleasant and astringent. It dries down amazingly quickly on the skin however, and on me it starts to behave within maybe five to ten minutes. At this point it becomes an amazing concoction of powdery white warmth. There is tea, and a very clean scent that reminds me of white cotton but isn't insipid the way many of the 'shower' fragrances tend to be. It also has a depth to it that reminds me of the pages inside of old well-cared-for books. Not mildewed ones, pristine ones that have been stored in wood cabinets behind glass. Very quiet but not boring. And just to put it into perspective, I am not a "quiet" scent kind of gal. I am coveting Dzing! and 10 Corso Como at present, adore Baume de Doges, and would about bathe in Shalimar. But this scent has it going on for a day fragrance.

    As for wear: This is insane! I have been wearing this scent for five hours now, and about an hour ago I did some housework including dishes (hands and wrists submerged in soapy water, and the soap had some sort of lavender aromatherapy note ick!) and cooking (working with strong food scents including garlic and onion), and then I washed my hands after, and I can STILL smell the white tea. The silage isn't overwhelming, you won't knock anyone out in an elevator with this one so it would be a good addition to your daytime fragrance wardrobe. Highly recommended.

    15th December, 2008

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    Mitsouko by Guerlain

    Mitsouko is God.This is a wonderful perfume but is definitely a womans fragrance!!!!!!!!!

    This cracks me up! The above must have been entered as a cruel joke by my mischievous son...over a year ago...

    (And I just now discovered it [blush].)

    I shall have to amend it better in days to come, but suffice it to say, it's my favorite "women's" fragrance to smell on a man! And I might have left my poor son alone!

    Wonderful, paradigmatic fruity chypre, well-suited to both genders!

    15th December, 2008 (Last Edited: 08th February, 2010)

    Pussiloosan's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    Sécrétions Magnifiques by Etat Libre d'Orange

    I have enjoyed reading many basenotes reviews, but not until I smelled this scent, I felt the urge to register and for the first time express my feelings about a fragrance.
    To write clearly: This sucks.
    The most cloying composition of -yes- semen and blood, like making love with a man with prostatitis under your period.
    I honestly have a hard time smelling it long enough to be able to describe it more precisely, or to have time to sense any other notes.
    Do try if you're curious, but spray it on a strip or you might end up spending hours at the washing basin, like me.

    15th December, 2008

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Arôme 3 by D'Orsay

    This is an aromatic fougere. Lavender and light moss combine in a classy way, with good barbershop spice notes. I really appreciate the lavender which is realistic, dry and herbal. The scent is not heavy in any way; in fact it is restrained and measured. It conveys a crisp and elegant aura, it is a white-shirt sort of fragrance. As is often the case with well-done peppery/clove scents, there is a slight cool, airy note which is attractive. The drydown is a very light mossy spice.

    15th December, 2008 (Last Edited: 26th March, 2011)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Sheer Obsession by Calvin Klein


    I didn’t believe it when I first sniffed this… it actually is a genuinely sheer version of the great original. And it is very well done. It lacks the drama, the passion, the depth, the heaviness of the original, but it can stand on its own as a legitimate and competent variation. It delivers modern sweetness with a firm dose of musk, vanilla, and amber. It tends to get a bit powdery, but it always seems to be speaking in the voice of Obsession originale, even if it is a whisper or an echo. There is also a firm streak of incense in it which is a departure from the original, but suitable for this fragrance. But Sheer Obsession remains reminiscent of the original, and is an excellent scent in itself. As in most sheer scents, it would be nice if it had better longevity.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Chantal Thomass by Chantal Thomass


    Sweeter even, I think, than Pink Sugar. This is a super sweet one… It’s a fruity floral with a very berry strange opening featuring, among others, raspberry, cranberry, and tomato, in a not very refined accord. The florals of the middle are powdery and super sweet and the only floral I can identify is heliotrope. The base is warm, sweet, powdery: It’s woody, ambery, and musky with a thorough layer of opoponax. Chantal Thomass might have been an okay fragrance, but, as it is, it’s just too sweet.


    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    French Lime Blossom by Jo Malone


    The lime blossom, tilleul, linden, basswood: Whatever you call it, the massive blooming of the trees is one of the greatest olfactory treasures in the world, in my experience. As far as I’m concerned, this yearly performance of nature is olfactorily challenged only by the blooming of myriads of lilac bushes or rows upon rows of the Osmanthus hedge. As for me, I can’t decide which one of the three floral events I prefer. However it is easy to decide about this fragrance: French Lime Blossom just doesn’t accomplish… in its efforts to achieve simplicity and directness, it loses sight of its intention. It fails to distill the massiveness that occurs in nature down to the rustic purity of the a few small blossoms… it is too one-dimensional and makes nature’s incredible happening just a trifle boring.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Balahé by Léonard


    Balahé by Léonard: My girlfriend wore this in the '80s. What I remember most about it was the fascinating bottle – a heavy black bottle. To be honest, my memory of the scent is a bit weak: I remembered a very fruity, somewhat exotic Oriental with a dark, typical '80s drydown. It was very… errr… abundant… okay, …heavy… It certainly made itself known to the people of the neighborhood. Now as I look at the pyramid, I can see why it made an impression on me: pineapple, plum, anise, aldehydes, rose, jasmine, tuberose, orchid, orange blossom, sandalwood, vanilla, vetiver, musk, civet, opoponax, to name a few. But what an excellent bottle! Thumbs up, but just for the bottle and the memory.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cheap and Chic by Moschino


    Cheap and Chic is it’s extremely soapy, aggressively generic, and decidedly too sweet: Much more on the cheap side than the chic side. Basically mediocre, uninspired, and cheap… and, oh! The bottle makes it what? …a celebrity fragrance? Olive Oyl?

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Good Life by Davidoff


    Green and sweet. I went through two samples of this trying to eek out its secrets but what I mainly come up with is, “Green and sweet.” I think it’s the blackcurrent that makes the opening more interesting than most of its category. The opening has a clean citrus vibe with a lavender and fig leaf support, and I think it is essentially well done except I would have preferred less lavender. The fragrance moves to revolve around the fig leaf, and that dominance is not a bad decision – the fig leaf accord performs quite well. In the heart notes, the geranium contributes its unique green and, unfortunately, so does the violet, which, I will admit, mostly behaves itself, but I continue to wish it were not there. There’s an airy feel to the heart, which I enjoy very much. Its base is the typical base of a modern fragrance: I don’t get much wood, but I do get amber and green, and it is certainly is sweet enough. The fragrance is well done… It is much too sweet for me and I personally dislike the violet, but it is a well-made fragrance for the person who wants a clean, sweet, green fragrance.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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


    Wow! Shiso and cumin with mint and lemon as backup: I love it… it is so unusual and it is such a delicious smell. Opens with cumin and the sharp sour green note that is a quite good representative of the shiso leaf – the combination is amazing. Here is a case where lemon and mint actually act as softening agents. The fragrance is not strong in the sense of having a potent sillage; actually, it’s more subtle than not, except for the cumin. The problem with the fragrance as the other reviewers pointed out is that it has almost no lasting ability.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Diesel Green Masculine by Diesel


    Appropriately named, but it could also have been named “Sweet.” When the green in Green comes in, it’s sharp – a little ferny, a little medicinal, a little coniferous, and prodigiously sweet. It’s pleasant but not very challenging. Soon it moves to a sticky-sweet green / floral / spice accord with geranium, iris, ginger, and rosemary noticeable. Again, it’s pleasant… especially if you like sweet.. The drydown is woody, powdery, and… you guessed it… sweet. These are not especially refined accords… they are rather thick and blobby, but they are not unpleasant. The fragrance’s longevity is marginal at best… I get about three hours. Diesel Green is not a bad fragrance – most of the accords are nice especially for those who like sweet. . Cute bottle.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Portugal by Geo F Trumper


    Strong citrus opening led by the bitter orange: Impressive. I’m impressed by the drama and bitterness of the accord, and yet the herbals that are ghosting the accord make the citrus smell a little synthetic. The herbals move to the fore to form a rather dry and rather bland herbal heart. Not impressive, nor is the drydown – a straightforward musk with some herbals still left from the heart. Portugal is not exciting – it’s competent, but I’m afraid that that’s as far as it goes.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eau de Santal by Floris


    I was annoyed with Floris that they discontinued Sandalwood, and because of that I was ready to dislike Santal… Didn’t work. I like it… not nearly as much as I like Sandalwood, but it is still a very good fragrance.

    A sophisticated bergamot / green / spice accord opens up Eau de Santal – It’s an excellent opening rich and grounded: The opening immediately turns subtle and eventually moves to a spicy demeanor – pepper, nutmeg, clove, back grounded by a light lavender – I haven’t yet found the cardamom through several testings. The sandalwood is immediately apparent. I believe that it is more the creamy variety sandalwood than the aromatic, but and it is strongly supported by an aromatic cedarwood and frankincense that give it more body, breadth, and effusion. I didn’t think I would meet an accord this nice in Santal, so this is a pleasant surprise. The spices deliver but the wood takes precedence. I also love the richness and masculinity of the drydown… it is woody, incensy, musky, and a tad ambery: wood with a resinous tinge and a touch of sweetness. I think that I can see this as an Envy for Men that is more refined and subtle. It doesn’t have the Envy signature note in very much strength, but the supporting notes are quite similar to the background in Envy. Eau de Santal has limited sillage from my skin and marginal longevity so I won’t be purchasing it.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    parfums*PARFUMS Series 7 Sweet: Spicy Cocoa by Comme des Garçons


    Spicy Cocoa is a very weird acting fragrance. It does start out with a non-sweet chocolate, but, within seconds, the chocolate is gone, and a strange peppery orange note remains. The orange is strange because it is incorporated in with some very iffy spices – iffy in combination: fennel, cardamom, and coriander. Fennel has an anise like smell (I have come to dislike anise), cardamom often carries a sweat or even a fecal associations, and coriander smells to me like crushed bugs. I didn’t have much hope for the scent when I saw those middle notes, and I wasn’t disappointed. On my skin, this scent smells a trifle bit nauseating with a synthetic background – not really endearing. It does have excellent longevity, which is a good thing only if you enjoy the fragrance.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

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    Terra by Antica Farmacista


    Terra le Parfum opens with a strong aromatic lavender note with a bit of pepper and a quiet but sharp green. At first sniff I thought I was going to like it because I usually much prefer this aromatic type lavender to the creamy type lavender. But the straight lavender opening doesn’t last long before the vanilla and pine enter in… They don’t work together… What a strange… errr… unique combination – lavender, pine, and vanilla. I’m with Marlen: I can’t help but think of Christmas every time I smell it. Terra is not overly sweet, which is good because that would have made it completely trashy. As it is, it’s a strange one. It will take time for me to learn to appreciate this one. (Edit of 16 December 2008 review.)


    16th December, 2008 (Last Edited: 17th August, 2009)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Donna Karan Essence: Wenge by Donna Karan


    Wenge is quite similar to Black Cashmere. It is softer… not as dark. It has the addition of labdanum, a noticeable vanilla, and more amber; in fact, with its sweet note, Wenge approaches gourmand status. The wenge (wood) note is like a sweeter sandalwood note and the sweetness has a strong transforming effect on the whole fragrance because the wenge note is there from beginning to end contributing its essence and character to the fragrance. I think the incense is a bit weaker in Wenge than in Black Cashmere and Wenge is less dramatic and more comfortable. Wenge has that heart of sweetness that escapes Black Cashmere. Whatever the differences between BC and Wenge, they both work handsomely: Wenge is another great fragrance, different enough from BC to deserve a consideration even if you own BC.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eucalyptus by Thymes


    The Thymes Eucalyptus is more than simply eucalyptus. There is a citrus and green herbal in the opening with the eucalyptus offering its green / aromatic presence: Dramatic, uplifting, enjoyable, and addictive. It’s rather linear because of the eucalyptus and citrus motif. It is airy and soapy at the same time. And it doesn’t last very long. It’s completely unisex and thoroughly enjoyable.


    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ajna: The Third Eye by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab


    Ajna, The Third Eye: The Meeting of Shiva and Shakti. The two-petaled lotus – perception… command.

    Ajna opens with an eye-opening opening accord that is medicinal and strongly aromatic, maybe even a little astringent. Eucalyptus, mint, possibly cedar – all play a part in the aromatically medicinal accord. Not that it’s overpowering… it isn’t: It’s actually rather soft with a modicum of sweetness… and a suspicion of depth. The sweetness comes from a mild anise note that is soft but genuinely supportive: There is a quiet depth that is made up of a dull, dusty accord of spices and anise, which forms a solid but discreet platform for everything going on in the top. I find neither the top nor the platform very interesting in themselves, but the juxtapositioning of the top and platform is rather interesting to experience. I tend to enjoy medicinal fragrances and this one is included; it’s a thumbs upper.

    The next chakra up from Ajna is Sahasrara: The Crown. To begin at the beginning of the chakra journey, start with the base… the Root chakra, Muladhara.


    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Anahata: The Heart by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab


    Anahata: The Heart. It is the Love of Krishna, the breath of Vayu… The twelve-petaled lotus… compassion… unconditional love… psychic healing… empathy…

    If it was so empathic in reference to me, it wouldn’t have lavender... oh, well, I’d better practice up on some unconditional love – I’ll need it for this fragrance: Actually I am not totally turned off by the lavender in this fragrance: first, it’s quite a gentle fragrance and the lavender reflects that; second, this is the type of lavender I sometimes enjoy: this is the aromatic rather than the creamy lavender. The lavender is part of a rather soft, grassy / lavender accord. Next arises a floral note, probably a jasmine… the green jasmine note that is not my favorite, and with it is a darker note – probably something like a rosewood that moves the fragrance too an appropriately darker level. Mind you, the fragrance is still very subtle and it is difficult to gather these notes. I don’t detect much movement after the rosewood is reached except that I get occasional wisps of a bright sweetness. Those wisps are quite fleeting, and I hope I’m not imagining them. Anahata gently and all too soon vaporizes – it doesn’t last very long. Yet, I think I will keep testing this… it has possibilities.

    The next chakra up from Anahata is Vishuddha, the Throat. To begin at the beginning of the chakra journey, start at the base, the Root, Muladhara.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Arachne by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab


    I love spiders: In my apartment I have a “pet” spider that’s black and flat and as big as my hand (and I can easily palm a basketball). I’ve even learned to check the shower before I get in because I almost drowned her (him?) once and that would have been sad. The locals call them house spiders. I don’t think my spider is the type that builds webs… it’s mainly the type that hides and pounces on cockroaches. Arache the fragrance is probably more inspired by the spiderweb than by the spider itself. It is light and wispy – transparent. At first I get the (all too familiar with BPAL) bubblegum accord that I dislike immensely but fortunately it doesn’t last very long. The fragrance becomes a soft herbal green / floral combination that retains a bit of the sweetness leftover from the bubblegum, and it basically stays that way for a respectable time until the drydown brings out a gentle wood. The drydown seems quite short lasting to me, but I suppose that is appropriate for a fragrance as light and subtle as this. I don’t understand the purpose of that bubblegum note in any of the many bubblegum fragrances I’ve encountered with the possible exception of Etat Libre d’Orange’s Encens et Bubblegum, but it certainly is popular. Still, I like this fragrance: As light as it is, it’s very pleasant. It’s a little bit ethereal, a tad edgy, and truly unisex. It has delicate sillage and limited longevity.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Asp Viper by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab


    Asp Viper is basically Snake Oil (BPAL Snake Oil…which see) with almonds. It’s a nice enough fragrance – it has the spices, the myrrh, incense, and especially the vanilla of Snake Oil. I really like Snake Oil and I don’t care for almonds in a fragrance, so I’ll take a pass on this. If you like almonds, check this one out.

    16th December, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Muladhara: The Root by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab

    Muladhara: The Root… Security… stability… manifestation… survival… root of all matter… physical existence…

    Well, it is earthy… Patchouli; medicinals and aromatics; smoky, musky, and woody: It’s earthy enough to satisfy me. Muladhara has a natural feel to it. It reminds me of the outdoors with its dirt (patchouli) conifers (cedar), and greens (vetiver and basil). I even get a kind of smoked meaty note in there (sage and patchouli) which I don’t care for and which annoyingly reminds me of Demeter’s Mesquite. I do very much like the earthiness presented here, but I do not see the need or purpose or reason for the barbeque note – it’s a little annoying.

    I’m on the fence in this one. Muladhara has good sillage and longevity.

    Muladhara is the root, the beginning chakra. To continue a chakra journey, go to the next chakra up: Swadhisthana, the Sacral. (Edit of 16 December 2008 review.)


    16th December, 2008 (Last Edited: 16th June, 2009)

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