Fragrance Reviews from August 2008

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    snailhorn's avatar

    United States United States

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    Parfum Sacré by Caron

    I shouldn't like Parfum Sacre, but I do. I like it very much. In fact, it may be one of the most beautiful scents I've yet encountered.

    One of the things that has always hindered my appreciation of women's perfume is that so many carry a hint of that generic chemical "perfumy" stench that always hits you when you walk through the fragrance section of a department store. That smell is present in Sacre, but somehow Bethouart transforms it into the scent of opulent luxury.

    My grandma's messy closet was full of dried, dusty roses. Yet what seemed stale in the closet evokes feminine royalty in the purfume. There is incense in Sacre as well, which typically recalls me of stuffy churches and cheesy dorm rooms. Yet the incense in Sacre seems to belong in a sunlit cathedral with impossibly high ceilings, a space so vast that the smoke merely curls, rises, and disappears.

    Sacre is perfectly named. If I ever marry, I hope my bride wears this fragrance to the alter. If she doesn't, I may have to.

    23 August, 2008

    snailhorn's avatar

    United States United States

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    Comme des Garçons White by Comme des Garçons

    A saleswoman handed me a bottle of White when I told her I was looking for something reminiscent of clove cigarettes. After sampling it, this struck me as a fairly close approximation. The clove is definitely present, along with some scents I associate with India, (sandalwood and cumin perhaps?) However, the smoky, boozy aspect of a clove cig is not present in White. Also, the sweetness factor was totally different. A clove cigarette has a subtle sweetness, the kind you might find in a fruit curry. White is sweet in a more synthetic, soda-pop way, which seems exactly how CdG might be inclined to interpret a pomegranate.

    I can’t fault this fragrance for not being a fancy cigarette (as that is not at all its intention,) and I respect CdG’s attempt to create an oriental that is light, modern, and cool. Still, I can’t shake the feeling that this fragrance smells just a bit cheap.

    23 August, 2008

    Redneck Perfumisto's avatar

    United States United States

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    Mahogany by Etro

    I tried Mahogany because I'm a woodaholic and was looking for something different. I agree with the others that it's a rather synthetic smell - in my mind, it's akin to a hardwood floor with a pleasant but strong varnish. Someone else (the_good_life, I think) likened it elsewhere to being smacked in the forehead with a two-by-four, and I would concur, and add that the wood has been highly treated, sanded, turpentined, and varnished with something really, really synthetic. I will admit to liking it, as does my wife, but if you don't love wood in almost every form, I suggest care in choosing this scent. It's light, and projection and sillage are low, which are, to some extent, saving graces for something which errs on the side of being synthetic. Drydown gets better, not worse, so you have something to look forward to. But longevity is not great here, so those who are really put off by the need for reapplication should stay away. Glad I bought it, but not as much as I had hoped.

    23 August, 2008

    lizzie_j's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ciel Mon Jardin by Le Prince Jardinier

    Sir Slarty provided me with a sample of this, and I too am enchanted with the rhubarb note. It opens the fragrance--you get a blast of something sweet/sour/citrusy and familiar, and it may take you a moment to identify the rhubarb, because it's not used very frequently in fragrances. And the surprises continue, because the heart of the fragrance is very different from the opening, powdery and sweet and every so soft and (dare I say it?) pretty! It's almost like a different fragrance entirely! The softness continues into the base where vanilla and light woods are the stars. Very very nice.

    23 August, 2008

    Limitedmichel's avatar

    Netherlands Antilles Netherlands Antilles

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    Eau Parfumée au Thé Rouge by Bulgari

    It's a very unique sensual fragrance. Soft spoken but oh so warm. It opens up with the unique tea note. This stuff actually smells like black tea or atleast the topnotes do. After a few seconds, this slightly harsh tea sent transforms into a warm, sensual aroma. I get the fig note and something else mixing in with the tea. It last...pretty long for a cologne. Maybe an hour or four/five.

    This is an unique evening sent to me. Suitable for summer nights (without too much humidity) or winter... it's perfect for a fall or sring evening as well!

    This is my go to fragrance if I want to feel sensual. I'd use it if I was still dating.. Women be warned, men rejoice. All the women that have smelt it on me are sure that it's a men's fragrance only.. Whatever that might mean :).

    23 August, 2008

    Ms Rochambeau's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Heure Bleue by Guerlain

    In my sketchbook I have a list of some of my favorite words. Among them:

    ELEGANT
    OPULENT
    BEGUILING
    MELANCHOLY (Because the word looks like what it means.)
    REVERIE

    L'Heure Bleue embodies them all.

    A couple of months back I acquired a vintage bottle of L'Heure Bleue (the one with the rosebud top). I live on an artist's budget and was a little upset with myself (at the time) for paying more than I should have for something that I figured was not really a necessity.

    I don't feel that way now. After wearing L'Heure Blue several times I've discovered that it inspires me in a way that no average perfume can. For me, it evokes a state of reverie that grows from a longing for something I can't describe. Melancholy inevitably follows because the ability to fully define that "something" continues to elude me and I know that I may never know what it is...."Rosebud".

    The icing on the cake was when I discovered that the name was inspired by, what has always been, my favorite time of day/evening. Sometimes, as the day starts to wind down, I put on L'Heure Bleue, pour a glass of red wine and go out on my front porch to watch the last colors of the sky as they fade.

    Note: I actually wrote this review last year, but recently edited it for a mispelled word that was important to the description of the scent (smile). I'd also like to add that this review was for the vintage L'Heure Bleue (1950's). I've read some of the negative reviews wondering whether it was the new version they were testing, since I also disliked L'Heure Bleue the first time I spritz it on in a department store. I too thought it opened with a clinical smell. However, I held my judgement on it since that same week I had bid for a vintage bottle on ebay. I won it and when I received it and put it on and immediately fell in love. I'm glad I took the chance on an older bottle and was lucky enough to get it. It makes me sad that so many of the beautiful classics have been altered until we may never know how some of them actually smelled when they were first conceived by the original perfumer.

    23 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 24 August, 2009)

    bbBD's avatar

    United States United States

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    Helmut Lang Woman by Helmut Lang

    As a big fan of the EDC I've been looking forward to trying the EDP, especially because longevity is the biggest problem with the EDP. First off, this is not the exact same fragrance as the men's version, but more concentrated... close but not exact. They are both blended such that individual notes are not immediately evident.

    Whereas the EDC starts out with the 'sharper' notes (jasmine? rosemary?) from the get-go, the EDP starts more softly, with the florals more prominent, and the woody and patchouli notes present themselves later. Most people immediately recognize the buttery feel of this fragrance... what creates this buttery effect is the combination of musk, heliotrope and vanilla. The more I wear it the less I interpret the scent as 'butter'. I believe the EDP is less 'buttery' anyway.

    Rounding out he musk are some light florals - lily of the valley and rose. Lightly piercing through the musk and florals are woody notes of cedar, patchouli and sandalwood. Of course this really is a skin scent, and on me the sandalwood is particularly evident and sharp - almost spicy. HL does not present itself this way on my girlfriend at all. The florals persist longer, and are more noticeable, in the EDP. Overall either version is unisex. Seeing as though Dior Homme has made it ok for guys to florals, HL really was ahead of its time.

    As of this writing both versions are getting harder to find and the cost is going up. If you're interested I'd recommend checking HL out before it becomes elusive.

    Thumbs UP

    23 August, 2008

    Jubal's avatar

    United States United States

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    Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia by Estée Lauder

    Nukapai, you and I must have the same chemistry, I got the 'chemical' note you mentioned though it didn't even take two minutes. Too bad, when you love tuberose and gardenia you are always looking for that perfect combination. So far for me, I've only found it in Goutal's Gardenia Passion.

    23 August, 2008

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Égoïste / L'Égoïste by Chanel

    I love the fruity note combined with rosewood in the opening. The spicy rose heart note is tempered by the top notes and is sensual, but not allowed to lose its dignity. The creamy woods in the base are sweet, musky, slightly amberic and complex. I'm very partial to the scents from the House of Chanel, and this is one of their best. Interestingly enough, I have always enjoyed this scent and still have never tried the platinum version.

    23 August, 2008

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tabac Original by Mäurer & Wirtz

    Talk about a trip down memory lane! This one, along with Old Spice, brings back memories of my childhood. I love the smell, it's a true classic. It's a little bit barber shop fougere, a little bit spicy oriental, and a little bit tobacco chyphre. There is no other scent like it. This isn't something I wear very often, but there is something very comforting about knowing that it's there. Tabac is extremely long lasting. A little dab 'll do ya.

    23 August, 2008

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Beyond Paradise for Men by Estée Lauder

    This was one of the few blind buys I've ever made. Most of the fragrances in my wardrobe I enjoy, or I wouldn't have bought them. The only reason I bought a mini of this was based on Luca Turin's review. I have tried and tried to like it. I thought it might grow on me, but every time I smell it I just think "Bleah." To me, Beyond Paradise for Men is a headache inducing melange of very synthetic smelling abstract notes that create an extremely unpleasant dissonance. I don't like how it smells on a blotter, I don't like it out of the bottle, and I don't like it on my skin. I find it thoroughly unpleasant. There are several fragrances that I don't enjoy yet I can still appreciate their composition; Yet I don't smell the artistry that others have described in this one at all. This is the worst fragrance I own.

    23 August, 2008

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Opium pour Homme Eau d'Orient by Yves Saint Laurent

    This review is for Opium pour Homme Eau d'Orient Poésie de Chine (2008). It is a lovely, more transparent rethinking of Opium pour Homme. I haven't smelled the other Eau d'Orient versions so I have no basis for comparison. The first thing that came to mind when I sprayed this on is "Opium Eau de Cologne." The grapefruit on the top lightens the whole Opium effect without changing the composition into an entirely new fragrance altogether. A great anise/nutmeg accord sits in the heart of this one with a subtle dose of ginger and a grinding of lightly honeyed pepper. The dry down is lighter than original Opium consisting of a lovely sandalwood/amber and significantly less vanilla. With all of this lightening up of the fragrance one might think that it strays far from the original; however, there is never any doubt this is Opium. I think it's a great summer scent for Opium lovers who wouldn't dare touch the regular in the hotter months. I'm an Opium lover anyway (especially the EDP). Opium may not be the most sophisticated scent in my wardrobe, but it's a lot of fun to wear and I'm glad I have several concentrations to choose from.

    23 August, 2008

    Honoria Glossop's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fracas by Robert Piguet

    Fracas is the epitome of 80's perfumes to me. Nancy Reagan having lunch with Betsy Bloomingdale, that ladies who lunch kind of scent. I wore it for a while back then, but no longer.

    23 August, 2008

    Honoria Glossop's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eau d'Azur by L'Occitane

    It is hard to track down but it is a lovely feminine scent. Makes me think of the movie Enchanted April. My husband loves its simplicity.

    23 August, 2008

    Oxphocker's avatar

    United States United States

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    Himalaya by Creed

    This is consistently my favorite scent...the best description that I've heard of this is that Himalaya smells like money. Like a flashy party in the 1920s or an Aston Martin screeching around the corner. I like the scent when I first put it on...but where it really shines is when I'm taking off my undershirt at the end of the day and I can still smell the undernotes close to me. Just a wonderful scent all around and what got me hooked on Creed in the first place.

    23 August, 2008

    jon47's avatar



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    Hugo XY by Hugo Boss

    I'm surprised no one has mentioned the similarities to acqua di gio. almost identical bass notes. it goes on a little fresher and greener but evolves to a very similar smell. a very nice choice considering how common acqua di gio is. nice scent

    23 August, 2008

    OhioStateKat's avatar

    United States United States

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    Mistletoe by Jovan

    This was the BEST perfume EVER!! I wore it when I was in my early 20's. I wish Jovan would remake it. It smelled soooooo good!!!

    23 August, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Instant de Guerlain by Guerlain

    I was surprised that L’Instant de Guerlain is not as good of fragrance as L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme - usually the feminine version of a label is a better fragrance than the masculine version. On my skin it comes this L'Instant comes off as quite Oriental. It begins with a citrus / floral that rather sparkles and glows (but not with aldehydes) for a few minutes, then switches to a honey sweet mixed floral – I get a prominent jasmine, but it is a genuine floral bouquet. The sweet florals come with loads of sillage – so much that I don’t see how it could be a considered a daytime fragrance. The drydown is a sweet but not cloying vanilla / amber that has somewhat close projection and lasts incredibly. As an accord, the vanilla / amber is not very unique or inspired. Throughout its progression, L’Instant de Guerlain is refined and it projects femininity. It may not be as good of fragrance as the male version, but it is still earns a thumbs up.

    23 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 08 December, 2010)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Morgan de Toi Femme by Morgan de Toi

    Mace, Red Pepper
    Amber Crystal, Jasmine Musk, Nectarine
    Agarwood, Patchouli, Musk

    Very peppery at first but not overdone. Florals are listed in the pyramid, but I really don’t smell them except possibly as a neutral background… but background to what? I would call the scent a light fruit (the pyramid’s nectarine sounds logical) with a musk / patchouli. Later into the drydown there is an aromatic that shows up: a very light dose of agarwood, I presume. All of these levels are well done, subtle, and comfortable. It’s a nice scent and I find the nod to agarwood rather interesting. There’s a bit of aromatic conflict possibly between the pepper and the agarwood that provides a spot of interest for awhile, but in all, Morgan de Toi is a nice scent with not too many interesting things happening.

    23 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 11th December, 2010)

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ungaro III by Ungaro

    Ungaro III is definitely more upbeat than Ungaro II. Ungaro III has a fruity accord going on in the top that helps to balance out the darkness of the rest of the perfume. It ends up smelling rather sophisticated and sexy. Overall Ungaro III is a very complex scent that balances fruits, citrus, spices and lavender in the opening, the heart is a seamlessly blended accord of woods and flowers overlapping the musky resinous mossy and amberic base. But don't get the impression that it is an overly sweet jaunt. Ungaro III smells like a chyphre type of scent to me. It's very well done. Not as sensual as Ungaro II, It's less animalic and thus perhaps with more wide-spread appeal than its predecessor.

    23 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 05 March, 2011)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lavande Royale by Roger & Gallet

    This is a lavender fragrance of eau de cologne strength... As a straight forward lavender scent, it should present a more impressive lavender note: the one presented is rather lifeless and bland. It's not a bad version, but it simply should have a little more character. The main note comes off as lacking in nuance and delicacy. Lavande Royale also lacks longevity... I mean it is even shorter lasting than the typical citrus splash cologne. While the lavender note lasts, the sillage is quite good.

    This is not a terrible fragrance, it just could have much more going for it than its very reasonable price. I am an avid fan of several of the Roger & Gallet light colognes - ginger, vetiver, and Jean Marie Farina - but this one doesn't work for me. For someone who wants a superior light lavender cologne, I would recommend Cauldey Island Lavender.

    23 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 20th September, 2011)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Royall Muske by Royall Lyme of Bermuda

    At the risk of repeating, Royall Muske is a pleasant, simple, sweet, musk scent that has good longevity. It’s much more discreet than and nowhere near as complex as, say, Keihl’s Original Musk. It doesn’t have, nor is it meant to have the sensuality of Musk Kublai Khan, Musk Ravenger, or even Helmut Lang. But it is pleasant and not at all synthetic or tacky. It’s cleanly done… I enjoy it and I surprised myself with foreseeing several occasions where this is the character I desire in a fragrance. I like it.

    23 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 01st March, 2014)

    CoL's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Infusion d'Homme by Prada

    This is just plain rubbish! To my nose it is an exact mix of 80% Infusion d'iris and 20% Prada Amber Pour Homme. Uninspired, like so many of the chemical releases this year.

    24 August, 2008

    CoL's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Ma Dame by Jean Paul Gaultier

    This is wonderful stuff! Very unisex IMO but then again there really is little difference these days. Fruity/floral opening but the wood and musk comes through almost exactly at the same time which gives this the quirkiness we come to expect from Gaultier. Very modern and "now" but with a wonderful quirky (but VERY wearable) twist!

    24 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 05 July, 2009)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eau de Lalique by Lalique

    This one’s a winner. I don’t know why it isn’t more popular than it is, but it is a high quality EDT eau that is catching, creative, modern, and enjoyably wearable. It reminds me a bit of Eau de Cartier except that its notes are more lively, it lasts longer, and it costs half as much. It is so not generic, and it doesn’t have that strong sweetness that is so de rigueur in many modern, light fragrances. I don’t even find it very citrusy – it seems more spicy / green to me – all very discreetly and sophisticatedly presented. The top notes combine spice, citrus, herb, and floral which results in a light freshness that actually has some interest and depth without being very citrusy. I don’t actually catch much of the middle accord: It disappears, but the fragrance picks up again with its woody base with a touch of musk – a soft, clean skin scent that lasts longer than one would think for this type of fragrance. This is a unisex fragrance: Fresh, subtle, comfortable, unique – this is the Eau I’ve been looking for all these years.

    24 August, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Eau de Gloire by Parfum d'Empire

    First and foremost: The designation at the top of the page is completely wrong. In no way is this a feminine fragrance, I don’t think it’s unisex, either: It’s actually very masculine. Eau de Gloire has a beautiful citrus opening… made intriguing by a light touch of lavender… quickly smothered in smoke and incense. Resinous and potent, this is the kind of prelude that reaches down deep and speaks to the mystical inner universe. There is a full, rich background to the smoke and incense: I find the individual notes in that background almost unidentifiable, but I don’t care …the effect is so powerfully primal that all I need to do is to experience. I understand there’s tea in there and tobacco, immortelle, oakmoss. The tea and tobacco do their thing exquisitely. The oakmoss smooths and rounds out the accord. The immortelle emanates from the hidden center of Eau de Gloire: Not at all obvious, it broods beneath the smoke and illusions… transparent but earthy as only immortelle can be. The immortelle is the heart of the fragrance…the spiritual power behind the temporal throne of Empire…the subconscious root of the progenitor of empire and universe. The anise, to me, is barely present, but enough – challenging and inscrutable – it is used to perfection. Supposedly created to bespeak Napoleon, I don’t see this so much as a picture of The Emperor as a individual; I see it more as an olfactory interpretation and depiction of his historical persona and his influence on human history. Eau de Glorie is an easy, comfortable wear that lasts and lasts as a tobacco, mossy, immortal skin scent.

    24 August, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Midnight Flower by Neil Morris Fragrances

    The opening strikes with a clean, refreshing citrus / floral that is very much fortified by aldehydes – for a Neil Morris fragrance it is quite dramatic, thanks to the aldehydes. I’m not absolutely sure, but I think I get wisps of indole in the first few minutes after spraying: could be from the gardenia. It’s a beautiful opening… refined, delicate, feminine…and it even hints at a fetching modernized classicism. The middle is a soft green tea / floral accord that continues the personality already established. I must say that the use of florals in Midnight Flower is ingenious: They come across in bouquet form yet are natural, sensitive… organic. As usual I get more amber than musk in the base but I do sense a bit of the earthiness of the patchouli that nicely grounds the entire pyramid. As usual with the Neil Morris fragrances I’ve tried, the delicacy belies the fragrance’s better than adequate longevity. Its performance on the skin is nothing less than excellent.

    24 August, 2008

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Storm by Neil Morris Fragrances

    Beautiful natural aromas… a unique fragrance … hard to classify except that I find it quite masculine: The pyramid says papaya and lime for the top notes, but the opening to me doesn’t smell tropical or fruity in the least: I get a rustic earthy smell, part vegetal, part mineral, summarily interesting. It retains that rustic accord for quite a while, gradually yielding to a kinder, gentler floral that smells purple – I can’t think of any other way to describe it. Even though the scent has turned primarily floral, it keeps a pretty good hold on its masculinity by hinting at a marine background. I don’t get much of a change in accords after the scent turns to its middle; it becomes quite linear after that and holds onto that purple accord as a skin scent for two or three hours. As is the norm for Neil Morris fragrances, Storm presents a restrained, balanced sillage and at least a medium longevity.

    24 August, 2008

    JaimeB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aoud Ambre by Montale

    A smooth, warm ambery aoud scent comes right off the top and already contains, in germ, all the notes that follow; but they reveal themselves more and more as the drydown progresses, and shine softly with a mellow light. This has quite a good sillage, and on my skin at least, excellent longevity. Some people say this a scent for intimate moments, and I can see why they think so. It does have a somewhat seductive effect on people who have smelled it on me, although I can't say I was in the market when that occurred. Pity!

    Notes: Eastern Aoud, Amber, Rose, Honey, Spices, Woods, Cistus Labdanum, Leather, Incense

    24 August, 2008 (Last Edited: 25 November, 2009)

    JaimeB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Versace pour Homme by Versace

    So we are now engaged in discussing the chauvinism of minor differences. Is this like many other citrus-woody scents? Well, yes! This is a very popular genre, possibly impelled by the desire of many men to smell inoffensive and "light." And yet... Versace pour Homme, while functioning perfectly well within this market niche, is better than almost all the others in a couple of respects. For one thing, it manages to marry a slight aquatic note to the dominant citrus in this while retaining a sense of proportion and good taste — something that can't be said for the vast majority of aquatic-accented fragrances, which let the monster in without then being able to tame it. Secondly, this offering manages to make an interestinmg use of quality notes, among them: a lovely petitgrain that mediates bitter orange leaves; a mild blue heliotrope that bespeaks a floral breath of spring; an elegant and pleasantly winey-floral clary sage note; and a deeper woody note in the form of a gentler oud than one normally finds. This fragrance is definitely no powerhouse, but rather a medium-light warm weather scent that nevertheless has good longevity and decent sillage. If you wanted to do the "citrus-woody inoffensive" dance, this would be the elegant way to choreograph it, with a light hand, but with flair and brisk artistry.

    24 August, 2008

    Showing 1291 to 1320 of 1771.