Fragrance Reviews from May 2008

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    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Eau Rare Matale 06 by Parfumerie Generale

    Not a very strong or aggressive scent, L’Eau Rare Metale speaks softly, stays close, and moves carefully. The top notes – bergamot, white floral, sage – seem very soapy to me and they carry too much of a leathery ambiance for my taste. Leather isn’t listed in the pyramid, but I think the leather-like note may be caused by the birch note that is listed. The soapiness is not bothersome but the leather / birch note, as light as it is, is too strong for my tastes. Not soon enough, the offending note is replaced by a smoky black tea note. This is much more to my liking, and, as gentle as it is, the scent continues to be a quite dark in feeling. Usually I like darkness, but here I can’t help but feel that the subtlety of the fragrance conflicts with its darkness. This is a goblin bee that will not state its sting – I guess I like my darkness to be more tangible and less eerie. There is an excellent cedar sweetness in the background that beautifully completes the middle accord. The base is light and inoffensive – too light and not enough offensive as far as I’m concerned: It needs more substance and presence. Certainly not a bad fragrance, but, in all, there’s too much that I have a problem with in this one. I can’t find the love.

    02 May, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Chemical Bonding by Ineke

    At first there is a very serious chemical note that is somewhat bitter: I get the bitterness in the opening rather than the drydown. I find the "chemical" accords of Chemical Bonding definitely attractive: It quickly becomes a neutral texture that has elements of citrus and tea and metal. I like it very much except that it lasts only about five or six minutes. Then a strong peony note enters in – a very good peony note, actually: a peony note almost larger than life, just like the peony flower itself. When the peony note recedes, we are back to a chemical note again. This time the notes in the accord are less synthetic and more standard – there are a recognizable vetiver and amber, and the accord is very enjoyable in a subtle sort of way. It is smooth and light and a bit powdery. Chemical Bonding is quite an enjoyable fragrance.

    02 May, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Maharadjah by Nicolaï

    I wasn’t expecting the strong lavender opening – for some strange reason I didn’t think of lavender in an Indian theme fragrance. I was looking forward to a pallet of Indian spices with a sumptuously rich sweet background, but they weren’t there; however, the lavender came on in full force. It’s a good lavender opening; it reminds me a bit of LV’s Wild Lavender / Inglese or Lutens Gris Clair, only its not as dramatic or rich. On my skin it takes a while for the lavender to disappear to give the rest of the fragrance a chance. When it’s is gone, I don’t get any middle level accords, The scent seems to go directly to the drydown, which is a soft, spicy, enticing patchouli / sandalwood (more patchouli than sandalwood) skin scent, the longevity of which is superb. The lavender opening of Maharadjah is good, but it’s somewhat neutral for me: It’s too solid to be ignored and too light to provide the richness I enjoy in a very few lavender fragrances. But the drydown shines through: It is subtle, proportional, elegant, wearable, sensual...

    02 May, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Debauchery by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab

    The blurb about Debauchery on the BPAL website says: “A sinful, licentious scent: self-indulgent and luxurious. Mingled heady civet and red Egyptian musk, thickened with opium.” What I want to know is…why am I always missing out on all that sin and licentiousness in these debauching fragrances? What I get is a pretty ordinary, uninspired musky scent. Civet? You can’t prove it by me. I like civet… I find civet in most fragrances that claim it, but I don’t find it in this. Opium? Well, if I use my imagination, I can convince myself that I smell something like a poppy flower in there somewhere… Does that count? There are some quite grounded neutral aromatics in the background that don’t even meet the “smells like wet cardboard” standards but are not entirely unattractive. There’s not much more that I can identify in the accords, but the long lasting dry down is ... pleasant – even if it isn’t sinfully luxurious. It’s not fair, I’m so into mingling in some self-indulgent licentiousness...

    02 May, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Harmatan Noir 11 by Parfumerie Generale

    Dry, woody, and aromatically dark right from the opening salvo, but not as dark as others I’ve worn. This is another rich green / herbal fragrance somewhat in the nature of Diptyque’s L’eau Trois. I like the accords of Harmattan Noir 11 a bit better than those in L’eau Trois; I believe HN 11 is somewhat sweeter and many of the herbs are of a lighter, brighter nature than the run of herbs in the Diptyque fragrance. On the down side, HN doesn’t have anywhere near the life span of L’EauTrois: It lasts for less than an hour on my skin, and that’s completely unacceptable and earns the neutral rating. Except for its longevity, Harmatan Noir 11 is a unique and dramatic fragrance that is certainly worth a checking out.

    02 May, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aoud Velvet by Montale

    A fruity peachiness dominates the opening, which surprises and delights me even though I usually do not care for peachy notes. I am delighted by the fact that the auod is very restrained in this aoud scent, and it doesn’t explode into my nose and consciousness as it usually does, wiping out the presence of all the other notes. Also, I think I can enjoy the peach note because there is a wonderful floral, vanilla, and sandalwood combination that unites with the peach to create a warm, almost gourmand lusciousness on my skin—very appealing, very appetizing. This strikes me as though it might have been a blatant, rude, and gluttonous kind of accord, but it isn’t—it is warm and inviting and civilized and it keeps drawing me back into its ambiance. This is a smooooooth scent—smooth, warm, appetizing. The aoud is very shy and demure, but the sandalwood holds its own in the long lasting drydown, although I wouldn’t label it a woody drydown, because the vanilla and tonka are very well represented. This is a totally adorable scent - perhaps a bit too feminine for me but then again, possibly not.

    02 May, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Boisé Vanillé by Montale

    I love this vanilla fragrance primarily because I tend to dislike vanilla in fragrances. The vanilla in Boise Vanille is the best kind of vanilla—a vanilla that doesn’t smell like a fragrance vanilla — barely even suggests the (IMO) cloyingly sweet vanilla that has long been popular. Vanilla doesn’t get any better than this as far as I’m concerned; I’m in realistic-vanilla heaven. No secrets here—no enigmas or conundrums: This is a very definable scent. First of all, this is a skin scent—it barely projects; second, it is very linear, which fits well with its being a skin scent; thirdly, it is woody—quietly … elegantly … woody — even the vanilla is woody; fourthly, it is incredibly long lasting. I think that primary contribution of a “typical” vanilla to this fragrance is the powdery base. Montale’s Boise Vanille is a fragrance of beautiful woody accords, shadows of vanilla, it’s linear, powdery, long lasting, and hugs the skin: It's a little more to the distaff side, and a great scent.

    02 May, 2008

    JaimeB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Concentré D'Orange Verte by Hermès

    Some controversy about whether the green note in the top of this scent is basil or peppermint. I couldn't say for sure, but it seems peppery and minty to me. This is really a kind of chypre, with patchouli, amber, and even a slightly leathery note of cedar in the base balancing the citrus top note. What I love about it is the vivifying and refreshing tonic effect it has on me. Of course, it is a hesperidic scent, not extremely long -lived, but this one does better than many others by building in that chypre-style base.

    The inevitable comparison to Eau d'Orange Verte, its much earlier predecessor, is IMO entirely moot. I don't think they're all that similar, or at least no more similar than any two citrus scents would be. Bergamot, Lemon, Mandarin, Jasmine, Neroli are the notes for Ed'OV; all citrus and white florals.

    I don't own Ed'OV. It's no that I don't like it, but that I like Concentré d'OV much better. It's much deeper and more aromatic. And, of course, I'm a sucker for chypres and any hint of leather.

    02 May, 2008

    manicboy's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eau des Baux by L'Occitane

    Finally, a scent made for a Templar Knight! When you’re battling with the forces of darkness, it pays to smell good. Seriously, this scent is phenomenal. It’s quite unlike anything that’s ever come before it. It opens with the a mysterious spicy glow of Cardamom & Pink Peppercorn. Almost fruity but never quite there. Next, the incense rises with the Cyprus like a vapor from a cistern waving in a cleric’s hand. The vanilla/tonka sweeten the base at the end to give the Templar a lesson from the orient. Will last long enough for the battle and on through the night. I am forever swept under its majestic glow.

    02 May, 2008

    manicboy's avatar

    United States United States

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    CK In 2U Him by Calvin Klein

    If you will indulge me a few moments, I'd like to profess my love for CKIN2U for Him. I know it's detested here, but I must digress from the negative tide and say it's got depth, originality & quality. It's fizzy citrus opening is balanced and original. As it warms, the soft and slightly powdery cocoa/pimento accord develops. This stage is where I fell in love. Is it a gourmand or an oriental? Or both? I don't know, but it smells like an fine dessert (maybe cannoli?) waiting to be eaten. This accord fades into a light woody with a touch of white musk finale. The longevity is good and the bottle is unique and easy to handle. I haven't been this enthralled with CK since Obsession for Men came out which is not to say it's a masterpiece like Obsession. It does however, have more going for it than 95% of frags released last year. And yes, I detest the "techo-sexual", "young boy on the prowl" marketing campaign. In the end, this one succeeds.

    02 May, 2008

    Aiona's avatar

    United States United States

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    Weekend for Men by Burberry

    It's funny to me to see all the reviews by men who think this smells most like a women's perfume, because that was my thought as well! I sniffed the Burberry Weekend for Men on a card, and liked it very much! On the other hand, I sniffed Burberry Weekend for Women on a card, and my nose recoiled in horror! 'Nothing alike!

    I sprayed a little of this on myself, and it was all lemony-lime and bergamot! I liked it! Then, many hours later, it was still like a lime Lifesaver on my skin. Other women told me it smelled nice, and when I told them it was a male scent, they were surprised, too!

    It's a nice summery kind of scent. Long lasting on me too (>6 hours). 'Wouldn't come off with soap and water, or alcohol.

    02 May, 2008

    Strollyourlobster's avatar

    United States United States

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    Mazzolari Lui by Mazzolari

    A beautiful dark young man, big-shouldered and athletic, looking charmingly out of place in his tailored Italian suit. He tucks his hair behind his ear absently and you notice that he has mandalas on his palms. This is about patchouli--big, earthy patchouli that would follow you home still talking about forests and the rich earth of its mother's garden after a rainfall--were it not bounded by the slight formality of leather and spice.

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 04 May, 2008)

    Tonyprince's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eau de Gloire by Parfum d'Empire

    I love this one. The freshness of the herbal citrus top notes weaving in and out between the anise and tea is refreshing, but then there is that incense and tobacco complicating matters in the best possible way. It reminds me of acting in an old theatre in my childhood. The dressing rooms smelled a bit like this.

    02 May, 2008

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Acqua di Firenze by i Profumi di Firenze

    Acqua Mirabile Odorosa di Firenze is the full title I have. This is a lovely sort of scent. Though it is a bit more floral than is my usual preference, it is neither sweet nor heavy. I don’t think the green notes are *very* green, they fill in the spaces around the two floral notes, iris and honeysuckle. Iris is the emblem of Renaissance-era Florence so it an appropriate element in this signature fragrance. Here the violet-like qualities of iris root convey the fresh and transparent aspects noted by many. Honeysuckle gives a warm, rich quality, suggesting to me jasmine with a hint of vanilla. I find this to be pleasant, but I’m not wowed by it.

    02 May, 2008

    Maddyrain's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    Cumming by Alan Cumming

    Maybe too unique and different to my taste. The top notes are just terrible and I found to hard to wait the base notes come. Besides, the longevity is so poor...

    02 May, 2008

    jenson's avatar

    India India

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    L'Homme by Yves Saint Laurent

    What a journey it has been with this one. I wore close to 12 sprays of this and boy it did'nt have me gasping for breath..such is the quality of this remarkable gem. i dont know how to put it, but some how, they have managed to set a "Volume" on this one. it never gets too heavy.

    opens with some kind of blunt citrus along with the touch of Violets and basil that have done the trick here for me in the opening to mids....immediately this classic moves in to a warm "GLOW" and it reminds one (only reminds) of a "softer" and much luxurious version of a Dior Homme. the Ginger used here strangely reminded me of the raw ginger used in Quorom Silver..only this is 100 times more refined, subtle and been kept under the right volume...Ginger somehow holds the frgrance hereon along with the tonka bean that has been treated with so much finesse; it gives of an mirage of vanilla..but its not, least my guess...the cedar adds its charms with its touch of woodiness which is very light handed and effective. i get the Ginger all the way to the base on my skin, but by no means this turns a green scent...the presense of vetiver is only little i thnk..or maybe the ginger is eclipsing the same...

    it's no Dior Homme. its much much better than that. a must have for me. A very comforting/warm scent for winters/summers alike. going to office cant get any better/classier than this. its certianly for someone who doesnt have to try too hard. "class" all the way.

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 16 June, 2008)

    jenson's avatar

    India India

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    Désir de Rochas pour Homme by Rochas

    the intial 5 minutes i get the best Chocolate notes...ever, wow! its a gourmand kinda frag with woodsy notes and bit of Cigar. very mature and defined. definitely for someone who is confident and want somethin different. definite must have. this is from the house of Rochas. its a classic.

    02 May, 2008

    lookingglass's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Instant de Guerlain by Guerlain

    I recoiled from the sharp citrus topnotes when I first sprayed it on my skin, but I noticed its wonderful sillage on the drydown (while I was conciously trying to avoid smelling it). The magnolia was very distinguished: big, white, and creamy. I thought I smelled a bit of almond in its sweetness, the citrus began to smell more like Southern mimosa, and I was reminded of Champs Elysee. Then it got deeper, sultry, more "Guerlain-aid"-y, very much like Shalimar. It dried out to a consumation of powdered faerie tea cakes, drizzled in musky honey served in a fresh flower. Enchanting and very much worth the 5 minute drydown!

    Head notes : citrus honey.
    Heart notes : magnolia inclusion.
    Base notes : crystalline amber.

    02 May, 2008

    lookingglass's avatar

    United States United States

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    Insolence Eau de Toilette by Guerlain

    Someone said that Insolence is like Apres L'Ondee with nail polish remover. I can see that! Drying out though, the violet quickly disappears, and what I smell is raspberries, very ripe and realistic with even the tiny bitter seeds adding a distinct muskiness. This fragrance is sassy, but far too fruity to be considered sophisticated. I just can't take it seriously. Hours and hours later, I get a faint detection of Apres L'Ondee, like a distant moan saying "How could you doooo this to meeeee.....?". I shake my fist at Guerlain for making AL nearly impossible to find. If you really love Insolence, please just buy AL and wear a raspberry body lotion with it, so Guerlain will see that AL still has an audience!

    02 May, 2008

    lookingglass's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Instant de Guerlain by Guerlain

    I recoiled from the sharp citrus topnotes when I first sprayed it on my skin, but I noticed its wonderful sillage on the drydown (while I was conciously trying to avoid smelling it). The magnolia was very distinguished: big, white, and creamy. I thought I smelled a bit of almond in its sweetness, the citrus began to smell more like Southern mimosa, and I was reminded of Champs Elysee. Then it got deeper, sultry, more "Guerlain-aid"-y, very much like Shalimar. It dried out to a consumation of powdered faerie tea cakes, drizzled in musky honey served in a fresh flower. Enchanting and very much worth the 5 minute drydown!

    Head notes : citrus honey.
    Heart notes : magnolia inclusion.
    Base notes : crystalline amber.

    02 May, 2008

    lookingglass's avatar

    United States United States

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    Insolence Eau de Toilette by Guerlain

    Someone said that Insolence is like Apres L'Ondee with nail polish remover. I can see that! Drying out though, the violet quickly disappears, and what I smell is raspberries, very ripe and realistic with even the tiny bitter seeds adding a distinct muskiness. This fragrance is sassy, but far too fruity to be considered sophisticated. I just can't take it seriously. Hours and hours later, I get a faint detection of Apres L'Ondee, like a distant moan saying "How could you doooo this to meeeee.....?". I shake my fist at Guerlain for making AL nearly impossible to find. If you really love Insolence, please just buy AL and wear a raspberry body lotion with it, so Guerlain will see that AL still has an audience!

    02 May, 2008

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Homme de Grès by Grès

    Now THIS is what a lemon and wood scent is all about. A much richer and darker (to be comparative to things I know) of Lacoste (original) but not as playful, more sincere. This is amazing throughout all the stages of the scent. I would say that this is an excellent fragrance for anytime you wish to impress at anytime. Sadly discontinued, finding a reputable source for more might prove difficult.

    02 May, 2008

    Bromo33333's avatar

    United States United States

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    Allure Homme Edition Blanche by Chanel

    This smells to me like what Allure should have been! I find the regular Allure to be harsh and bland once the harshness subsides. Not awful, but certainly not what I think of when I think Chanel. Well, all is forgiven! This takes the idea of Allure and does it *right* this time. Good citrus and some powder, and even a hint of Lavender to my jaded nostrils! It sills moderately, and overall leaves a great impression.

    It would not be a crime if Chanel would replace their main offering with this flanker!

    02 May, 2008

    Mokkie's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    Clean Warm Cotton by Clean

    Well.....what can i say about this one. Fresh, yep, definitely...strong, yep, definitely...staying, YEP DEFINITELY, smell artifical, unfortunately yep.
    I love this one and is fighting very hard to say that. It is unisex, i believe i can pull it off but i must admit, this is the first EDP i am trying and must say, such a different "power" as to a men EDT frag. I will use it but 1-2 squirts max....For the record, i love strong frag like Dior Homme and Hermes D'Terre...This one, is soooo strong as compared to the 2 stated before...use with caution.

    02 May, 2008

    argus wishingwell's avatar



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    Noir by S.T. Dupont

    this dupont choice is meeting all the requirements for the "woody oriental" family. oriental, but not like the crowded streets of an oriental megapol, just like an oriental forest. lavender and mint top is powerful and stays quite a long time with the middle notes. this situation makes noir wearable in every occasion.

    if you want to feel the fresh oriental side of this fragrance, i recommend spraying it to your collars. because noir tends to get warmer on the skin. very versatile and even sexy fragrance. sillage is ok and longevity is very well on both skin and fabric.

    and the bottle is so beautiful...

    officer down!! officer down!!! (but thumbs "up")

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 14 May, 2008)

    Jemimagold's avatar

    United States United States

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    Nahéma by Guerlain

    I remember wearing Nahéma twenty or so years ago and was interested to try it again now that I know a bit more about perfume. It is nice enough fragrance that smells like roses, powder and honey but to be honest, I am not as crazy about it as I once was. Nahéma just seems so one-dimensional and is a poor relation to the likes of Joy. It is nothing compared to a floral masterpieces of today such as Serge Lutens’ Un Lys, or Editions Frederic Malle’s Lys Mediterranee or Carnal Flower. In short, Nahéma’s time is unfortunately past.

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 04 May, 2008)

    Jemimagold's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ambre Russe by Parfum d'Empire

    With notes like the ones listed above, I was so intrigued that I had to try it. Ambre Russe is a heavy spicy, honied fragrance with a deep overlay of amber and incense. It is a heady fragrance and would be perfect for someone who enjoys a dark Oriental perfume. Unfortunately that person is not me but I can't help but admire Ambre Russe's beauty and originality.

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 04 May, 2008)

    Jemimagold's avatar

    United States United States

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    Acqua di Sale by Profumum

    I was extremely disappointed with Acqua di Sale. How hard is it to mess up a beachy fragrance? Well, here is a textbook example of one such disaster. First of all, there is waaaaay too much of that artificial cheap-smelling musk that just sticks in the back of my throat. The ozonic notes are flabby and anyways are overpowered by the musk. Also, it has some major sillage so be careful when applying it unless you are sure that this is for you. In short, Acqua di Sale is a synthetic-smelling poor quality perfume.

    If you want a perfect beach scent, try CB I Hate Perfume's Mr. Hulot's Holiday which has a clean, realistic smell of beach, salt air, driftwood, etc... It blows Acqua di Sale out of the water (pun intended). Bond's Fire Island also puts Acqua di Sale to shame.

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 04 May, 2008)

    Jemimagold's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ipanéma by Satellite

    Ipanema is an extremely fruity-sweet perfume with a top note of bubblegum. The intense sweetness lasts about 15 minutes and then veers into the land of coconut and musk. The juice itself is an unfortunate shade of turquoise which ramps the "cheap and tacky" factor up a notch. Personally, I think someone at Satellite had one too many caipirinha’s when concocting Ipanema however, if you love Apothia's "IF", you will likely find Ipanema appealing.

    Here are Ipanema's notes per Fishbone’s website: ylang-ylang, orange, grapefruit, freesia, sandalwood, coconut, tonka bean, white flowers, vanilla, sea accord, and patchouli.

    02 May, 2008 (Last Edited: 04 May, 2008)

    wsaheer's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Gucci pour Homme (original) by Gucci

    The fragrance is masculine and woody ....

    I've got a few bottles of them .... Anyone interested in it?

    02 May, 2008

    Showing 31 to 60 of 1079.