Fragrance Reviews from April 2008

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    Tsarina's avatar

    United States United States

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    White Rose by Floris

    White Rose was one of the favorite scents of Alexandra, the last empress of Russia. I hope that now this lovely scent has been re-issued, it will be around for a long time. I find it a deeply satisfying rose that is never cloying, and one that even those who don't particularly like rose scents appreciate.

    09th April, 2008

    Tsarina's avatar

    United States United States

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    Bal à Versailles by Jean Desprez

    My first encounter with this masterpiece was passing someone wearing it on the staircase in L'Hotel on the rue des Beaux-Arts. Forever after it remains associated with Mistinguette, Oscar Wilde, attention to detail and full blown beauty. Wasn't it Luca Turin who called it a 'romance bomb'.

    If I could take only one oriental to a desert island...

    09th April, 2008

    lookingglass's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fumerie Turque by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    So many tobacco scents smell dry, almost papery to me. I'm thinking specifically right now of Habinita at Jolie Madame, but I know there are many others. Fumerie Turque is nothing like this. It is deep, sweet, thick, and enveloping. It is the scent of the silk lapel of a rich man's smoking jacket (is he wearing MKK?), or the beautiful lady on his lap, sitting in his favorite leather chair, with wafts of the finest cherry tobacco, fresh out of the canister, billowing in the air. Swoon...

    09th April, 2008

    lookingglass's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fumerie Turque by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    So many tobacco scents smell dry, almost papery to me. I'm thinking specifically right now of Habinita at Jolie Madame, but I know there are many others. Fumerie Turque is nothing like this. It is deep, sweet, thick, and enveloping. It is the scent of the silk lapel of a rich man's smoking jacket (is he wearing MKK?), or the beautiful lady on his lap, sitting in his favorite leather chair, with wafts of the finest cherry tobacco, fresh out of the canister, billowing in the air. Swoon...

    09th April, 2008

    grannieann's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    Gardenia by Santa Maria Novella

    I have also found it difficult to find a good Gardenia but now have a decant at last of Santa Maria Novella's. I agree it is green, green, green and I think the gardenia is good. I am quite intrigued with this but need to try it again a few more times
    before I can decide...it is unusual for me to be doubtful. It entices me no end but I am a little suspicious of a note there in the middle to drydown....
    does anyone have the notes for this one. I would be so pleased to know !.

    09th April, 2008

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Polo Explorer by Ralph Lauren

    I don't quite understand the "hate" against this frag. I can understand why some wouldn't like it. I mean, it has "amber" in it of course it'll be sweet. But maybe I'm biased as I happen to like sweet, woody scents. Gucci pour homme comes to mind.

    I'm surprised how long this lasted on a card. I had taken a card home with me back in January and I had found it again in early March and it still smelled decent. It's no Serge Lutens woody scent but it's a good quality for a designer scent.

    The color scheme and bottle fit the theme well but the name isn't apt.

    09th April, 2008

    Merlino's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Original Santal by Creed

    Like eric, I feel I need to defend "my fragrance" a little. While not being a true Sandalwood like Santal de Mysore it think it is a very nice fragrance with a good development and a good, youthful direction for Creed. It starts out sweet but fresh at the same time due to the juniper berry. After a while the woody elements kick in but they're never dominant. The tonka bean and vanilla form a very powerful yet seductive base.

    I consider this fragrance very casual, for clubbing or for hanging around with friends. Would probably not appreciate my dinner partner wearing this.

    09th April, 2008

    Jemimagold's avatar

    United States United States

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    Rose Poivrée by The Different Company

    I have been intrigued by Rose Poivree ever since I first smelled it. It smells like an elegant old rose fragrance to which dashes of smoky peppers and berries have been added. It dries down beautifully and leaves an elegant rose scent behind. It would be so interesting to experience how it works on a man. In my opinion, Rose Poivree is wonderful, unique and another Jean Claude Ellena masterpiece.

    09th April, 2008

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Jaïpur Homme by Boucheron

    Sweet oriental that smells lovely, but is a bit powdery and stuffy imo -- also don't get much heliotrope amongst the spices. I can't seem to wear it for too long without getting bored with it and this doesn't happen with fragrances I truly like/love. The 'fraiche' version is preferable but didn't finish the 100ml of that either.

    Kaern

    09th April, 2008

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Bogart pour Homme by Jacques Bogart

    A bit sharper than Cristobal -- a sort of sweet tobacco with vanilla and yes -- rum. Sillage and longevity both excellent. Very, very nice.

    Kaern

    09th April, 2008

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Daim Blond by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    A bit boring really -- don't get much leather unless a very sweet suede compensates. It's not unpleasant, just too sweet with not much else happening.

    Kaern

    09th April, 2008

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Tamboti Wood by Susanne Lang

    Smelt lovely on the tester (soft rich wood) but not so when applied to my skin. It had a sort of greasy sheen and longevity/sillage was poor. Don't see it as feminine at all. It reminded me of Encre Noir by Lalique, which is preferable imo and much better value for money.

    Kaern

    09th April, 2008

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Eau Sans Pareil by Penhaligon's

    Eau sans Pareil has a very interesting, aromatic opening. It is dusky green and herbaceous, tangy and a bit minty. Just what you’d expect from a combination of sage and artemesia. The scent settles down into a dry, refreshing, slightly soapy and mossy chypre. This is very attractive, it is a shame that it has been discontinued.
    ---
    OK people, here is the deal. The above review is for the vintage juice. I just did a side-by-side comparison of old and reissue. What a sham! Penhaligons has really done a disservice to consumers by offering this totally different scent under the same name.
    NEW - a dog's breakfast of notes... go to the Penhaligons website and check it out. The scent itself is floral, sweet, with glittery aldehydes. Extremely generic, with no distinguishing features. Bits of candy sugar, bits of spice, bits of floral notes. Powderly, at times very sweet, at times a bit metallic.
    OLD - aromatic, dusky-green, earthy, herbal. Dry. A mossy chypre, slightly soapy in the dry-down. Celery leaf note from the artemsia. Old-school in style, quite charming.
    Shame on Penhaligon's for foisting this on us. At least have the decency to call it Eau Pareil 2, and don't charge so much for a drugstore style scent.
    Thumbs up for the vintage juice.
    Thumbs way, way down for the re-issue.

    09th April, 2008 (Last Edited: 23rd January, 2012)

    pluran's avatar

    United States United States

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    Blenheim Bouquet by Penhaligon's

    Some mild florals would amplify the other notes and make it a little more interesting, but it would also change its character and I like it the way it is. Whoever made it handled the spices with finesse. Raw materials aren't its strong point as it lacks any kind of real texture; but it's a no-nonsense fragrance that's cool, cerebral and distant yet also warm and bracing, making for adequate company in a variety of places. It can become a little routine but it has sufficient panache and manages to keep my interest at least to some extent. I wore it during an intense legal deposition not long ago in a hot city and it felt good while holding my own, even turning things around. Some people have mentioned that they think women don't like it, but my girlfriend loves it. There are better quality citruses, but I like the serious edge of Blenheim Bouquet and it definitely deserves an erect thumb.

    09th April, 2008 (Last Edited: 30th March, 2012)

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Quercus by Penhaligon's

    The opening of Quercus has lemon-lime and green herbal (basil) notes which are refreshing and lively. The floral notes are effectively used for a man’s fragrance: they soften but are not sweet and do not dominate. There is an attractive moss base, with a tiny bit of spicy green galbanum. A bit of sandalwood peeks through as well. This is a medium-toned scent: it is attractive in a low-key way. I find it pleasant, but not compelling or distinctive. It is a mossy sort of scent, not outstanding nor distinctive. Mild endorsement.
    (revised from previous review)

    09th April, 2008 (Last Edited: 13th June, 2012)

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Abercrombie & Fitch Woods by Abercrombie & Fitch

    Revised review.
    I have the original 1990's bottle.
    Opens with a hefty lavender note and some peppery spice. Somewhat sweet throughout its life. There is an "outdoors" or fresh note, which might suggest pine to some (but not me). Not problematic, but not coniferous in my opinion. Hint of wood as it develops. Dry-down is a somewhat sweet musk.
    A basic scent, pleasant enough and somewhat old-school. A tad too sweet for me. Don't over-apply and it is OK.

    09th April, 2008 (Last Edited: 04th October, 2014)

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Uomo by Lorenzo Villoresi

    Revised review.
    I like this scent, it is a very good grassy vetiver with some herbal and coniferous notes.
    It starts with citrus and bay leaf. Then sage enters with a scrubby-rubbery aspect, and the herbal chord at this point is powerful, even a bit macho. There is a welcome freshening note from the juniper. The notes are all distinct here. The scent settles into a substantial vetiver-patchouli chord. In the final dry-down, the vetiver is very grassy and we find a reappearance of juniper (a nice surprise).

    09th April, 2008 (Last Edited: 18th October, 2014)

    Carabruva's avatar

    United States United States

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    Narciso Rodriguez for Him by Narciso Rodriguez

    Others seem to think more of this frag than I do. The big problem: too much violet! I will admit that it's a complex fragrance, and it evolves and evolves...which I usually appreciate. But the violet was too annoying for me to appreciate this at all.

    10th April, 2008

    laurent's avatar



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    Special No. 127 by Floris

    Actually in small amount it is perfect for everyday -
    For sure - it is a specialist scent - not grand, not in your face - but very Special .............127.

    10th April, 2008

    Margareta's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    Narciso Rodriguez for Her by Narciso Rodriguez

    So finally I got the Narciso Rordigues for Her, almost two years after it´s release in my country! It took a while to be able to try the EdP, that is why. On my skin the EdT and the oil don´t come out at all, but the EdP do instead! The EdP is a high quallity perfume, really longlasting, and keeping it´s tone all the way! Perhaps this is what I like the very most about this perfume! It is quite silent, but there all the time! I wonder if this is a summerfrag as well, I hope so! Two thumbs up for Narciso Rodrigues for Her EdP.

    10th April, 2008

    Margareta's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    Infusion d'Iris by Prada

    Me, too, find Prada Infusion d´Iris outstanding. It is an oriental, gentle, but the oriental-theme is there beneath the other tones all the time, and gives the frag a mysterious touch.

    I adore Prada(new), but find it a frag difficult to wear, as it is easy to put too much on, and then it becomes horrible on my skin. Prada Infusion d`Iris is much easier to wear.

    The Iris-note is truly really beautiful!

    Worn with the bodylotion, there is no problem with the longlivety.

    I do hope this will become a classic!

    10th April, 2008

    mikey_p's avatar



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    Chance by Chanel

    A strange dissonant peppery/woody fragrance that is jarring, uninspiring and thoroughly uninteresting. This is in the same vein as Angel, but shares none of its originality or beauty. This fragrance has no purpose whatsoever. Buy Angel and forget this confused jumbled mess.

    10th April, 2008

    mikey_p's avatar



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    Paloma Picasso / Mon Parfum by Paloma Picasso

    Errrr......is it just me or has nobody realised that this smells NOTHING like it used to. My mum used to wear this in the 80's when she had big hair and did her makeup like one of the women in the Robert Palmer video. We were in Selfridges last week and she thought she would have a little squirt as she hadn't worn it for years. The result was puzzling. Neither of us recognised it. It was like some sort of watered down pissy patchouli mess. Gone was the dirty civet animalic sexiness. My mum instantly said "Oh, that's horrible, it is totally different". Alas, another victim of reformulation. When we went home, she sprayed her original vintage bottle, and no, our sense of smell had not changed. Very disappointing.

    10th April, 2008

    mikey_p's avatar



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    Orange Spice by Creed

    The similarities between this and Kouros are quite striking, both have that animalic civet sexiness, though I feel there is more of a civet presence here. I can't wear Kouros myself because of that strange harsh chemical/soapy note that has been mentioned before that adds an intolerable harshness, though I quite like it when I catch it in a stranger's sillage. That note is absent here, and OS has a chiffon like lightness that is always easy to wear. True, this is much simpler than Kouros, but that is in itself not a bad thing as sometimes you don't feel like wearing a fragrance that talks too much. This is like a light civet/orange gauzy veil. Divine...

    10th April, 2008

    teflondog's avatar

    United States United States

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    1805 by Truefitt & Hill

    A one-dimensional citrus scent that doesn't last any longer than 2 hours on me. While it doesn't smell bad, it doesn't stand out from the hundreds of other fresh scents out there. It lacks complexity and depth even for a fresh scent.

    10th April, 2008

    teflondog's avatar

    United States United States

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    Sandalwood by Art of Shaving

    I use the aftershave and it's amazing. Unlike the EDT, it lacks the eucalyptus note so it doesn't smell medicinal at all. It goes straight to the sandalwood heart notes. I find it very warm and creamy so I don't understand the other reviews. While it stays fairly close to the skin, it lasts a good 6 hours on me so I'm impressed. The only downside to it is that it's suited more for cold weather since it's so rich.

    10th April, 2008

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Bandit by Robert Piguet

    I tested the edp with high expectations, only to crash and burn! This one lost it's punch on me after the first 5 minutes. It rapidly weakened into a sharp, non-descript eau de cologne...I did'nt hate it, but I didn't enjoy it either.

    10th April, 2008

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Shalimar Light by Guerlain

    First off let me state I do not feel this is a 'watered down' version of the original Shalimar.

    Opening with bergamot, this shape shifting beauty begins with the scent of lemony custard. Velvety smooth, bright and citrusy, with some vanilla in the backround...as this blend evolves I'm reminded of how Jean Nate used to smell, clean and bright. More time passes, the citrus dissolves, and the vanilla simmers up to the top. Here is where the "Guerlain" becomes unmistakeable. At this point in Shalimar Light's development, I can easily recognize the genetic match between this version and the original.
    I find this rendition to be quite a nice fragrance, extremely wearable and modern.

    10th April, 2008

    tvlampboy's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aoud Damascus by Montale

    Magnificent rendering of the rose note, I'll agree. Still, what makes it so is the unusual use of gurgum (thanks for the info there, zztopp) and what I can only describe as a deliciously high quality sandalwood note -- very dry, very expensive. (I hope I have this pegged -- that's certainly what I'm picking up here.)

    This is by far the most subtle of the aoud offerings from Montale that I've sampled to date, but it's no blushing violet. The aoud note is clear and consistent and long lasting on me, and in no danger of being overwhelmed by the rose (as is almost the case insofar as Black Aoud goes).

    Definitively unisex comfort frag -- very powdery, very dry but not dessicated. HUGE thumbs up!

    10th April, 2008

    Strollyourlobster's avatar

    United States United States

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    Vetiver Oriental by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    This is unlike anything I've ever smelled. Except maybe, and don't be put off by this, a really nice cardboard box. One that you've had to tramp through jungles and scale cliffs to get to.
    Vetiver Oriental is a shapely, velvet-like fragrance--no sharp edges, no single dominant note, about as far from a soliflore you can as get. Here vetiver is clearly present but transformed into something very urbane, though still powerful. Slightly sweet, especially the first two or so hours, but with a sweetness that is beautifully balanced with strong woods. In the drydown the sweetness is joined with a bitter bark note, like the most austere cinnamon imaginable. I suppose it handles sweetness in a way similar to several other of the woodsy, quasi-gourmand Lutens. It has a thread in common with Equipage that is apparent only very late in the story.
    To me this is at once interestingly complex, absolutely original, and imminently wearable.

    10th April, 2008

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