Fragrance Reviews from October 2009

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    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Serge Noire by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    Update on my initial review below.
    This starts with a rather odd opening. It is so strongly scented of mint and clove that it reminds me of the mouthwash used by dentists after a session in the chair! Whew.
    It settles into a woody-spice scent with some incense, a near cousin to Heeley Cardinal. If you have HC then you don't need this IMO.
    Surprisingly, I didn't get any cumin when I tried it this time.
    ----
    On my skin this is a spicy-wood scent. It is dry and lean for a Lutens fragrance. No stewed fruit, no opulently-giddy florals.
    The minty-camphor notes at the beginning are very interesting, but too brief. In addition to cloves and cinnamon, I detect cumin. Cumin is often paired with cedar, and the cumin note contributes the male-sweat note. Lots of black pepper is to be found as well.
    The scent is aromatic and interesting. I don’t get much (if any) of the incense or burned-wood notes. The wood I detect is straight-forward cedar, twinned with cumin.
    A hint of buttery amber emerges a few hours later, but it is a background element to the spice and wood.
    General approval on this scent, but I wish there were more incense or smoky notes.

    21st October, 2009 (Last Edited: 06 November, 2012)

    Quarry's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aqua Allegoria Mentafollia by Guerlain

    Hello. My name is Quarry, and I'm a green-aholic. No surprise to anyone here that I love these mint green top notes, but once they mix with Mentafollia's soapy heart, the spell begins to break. I'm put in mind of the unceasingly minty goodness of Masakï Matsushïma Mintea (discontinued), which doesn't vary to any degree, but sustains that sweet, green blast that puts a glint in my eye.

    22 October, 2009

    evinick's avatar

    Greece Greece

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    Iris Silver Mist by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    If you think seriously of beginning a collection of niche perfumes, but you have still not found THE one, that will inspire you in order to continue, I suggest you try Iris Silver Mist. Moreover if you like Iris root note and seek the genuine smell of it, I believe you will have the chance to find it in this magnificent juice. No “make up” applied, no other notes predominating at the background, just pure Iris that goes from rooty, earthy and maybe a little dirty, to deep, musky and powdery. Although it is not a mainstream, from the middle notes and on, it becomes so calm and close to the skin that it is difficult to completely dislike it. Undoubtedly unisex, unoffensive and easy to wear anytime of the day. Just great!

    22 October, 2009

    arabesque's avatar

    United States United States

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    Blu Notte by Bulgari

    My initial reaction to this scent didn't change over time. It just smelled like perfume. Nothing original or special. I couldn't especially pick out any one scent. I guess it dried down to being a "clean" fragrance that became increasingly sweet on my skin. On my sister it made a nasty turn to straight vodka. I can't help thinking "bar skank" when I smell this on most people. My mind then leads me to thinking that I also smell stale cigarette smoke. Simply association. Still, not a good one.

    22 October, 2009

    arabesque's avatar

    United States United States

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    Pure Poison by Christian Dior

    My mom bought this instead of her usual Poison. At first I thought it was okay, nothing offensive. A few days later, it really grated on my nerves every time I caught a whiff of it. Smells like a very strong, obnoxious laundry detergent. I can't stand the smell anymore.

    22 October, 2009

    arabesque's avatar

    United States United States

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    Egyptian Goddess by Auric Blends

    I bought this a few years ago because I liked the name. I wasn't sure what to think of the fragrance at first, so I wore it out. I was sitting with some friends and one of them kept asking "did someone get new laundry detergent?" No one said anything. Then, "Oh, I know what it is... Did someone get new cat litter? I swear I can smell cat litter."
    Damn it. She was right. It does smell like cat litter.

    22 October, 2009

    Sugandaraja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Après L'ondée by Guerlain

    Iris and violet, with a light element of earthy spice. I'll trust the universal consensus that this is anise, but it smells a little more complex than that to my nose, as well as having a slight tinge of something animalic. For a violet perfume, this is very warm and earthy, only becoming more so as it develops, and the warm, vanillic base emerges. There is a touch of wet, floral drama in the top notes, but the melancholy evades me here, and I find Apres L'Ondee to be a comfort-blanket type of soft violet.

    This review is for the now-discontinued parfum, which, despite being a parfum, has mild sillage and short longevity on my skin. It's probably my favorite Guerlain though, despite its ephemeral nature.

    22 October, 2009

    bokaba's avatar

    United States United States

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    Prada Amber pour Homme by Prada

    Not the special, anti-designer fragrance it was toted to be—far from sophisticated. Certainly Amber is not aquatic, fresh, or even citric, but it is rather more of a mish-mash fougere that goes nowhere fast. Most reviewers cite a beautiful, rich, even expensive soapiness from hotel soap. Dare I ask what kinds of hotels they frequent? All in all, a cut above the usual riff-raff of designer fragrances—just not every far above.

    22 October, 2009 (Last Edited: 10th November, 2009)

    Morgaine's avatar



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    Carnation by Mona di Orio

    Skanky. Big, skanky, *dirty* top notes, very floral and very indolic. Getting some leather too. However, there's an oddly synthesized flavour to its skank; plasticine, melting rubber? Can't quite put my finger on it. Like the rubber-tired sportscar that's Bvlgari Black went and did a hand break turn in a bed of decaying jasmine petals.
    The volume is turned down FAST, though: 15 minutes in it's a skin scent and the worst of the indole is gone. (Either that or I'm still stinking up the room but my nose is blocked.) The base does smell vintage-inspired: powdery but with a slight bitter edge cutting through it. Reminds me of Mitsouko in a way, though I'm sure that comparison will horrify lovers of that Grand Dame.
    An acquired taste for me - maybe without the plasticky thing in the top notes it would be more palatable.

    22 October, 2009

    black_truffle's avatar

    Bulgaria Bulgaria

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    Joy by Jean Patou

    This review is on the parfum from 2007.

    I first tried the EdT, and it was terrific. The top is so delicious and addictive. Unfortunately, the scent fades relatively quickly. After an hour, I cannot detect any of it on me. But it is very nice on clothes! Then I wanted to try the EdP, however, the extrait overtook it :)

    The pure parfum starts in the same manner as the EdT, of course - due to the higher quility of the ingredients, it is denser and richer, and it promises a better developement. Like a bubble you are blowing bigger and bigger. I smell the jasmine and some lily-of-the-valley, roses emerge here and there. I haven't smelled the ylang-ylang and the tuberose, but I am sure - as with all classic fragrances - more and more surprises are held hidden in it, and I will detect them when I better get to know this juice. After all, I am writing this just after the second time, I have dabbed it on me for exploration. It last at least 4 hours on my wrist - bearing in mind that it was rubbed against the jacket! I agree with all reviewers, who find the dry-down dirty and animalic.

    I can only recommend this scent to the right person in an appropriate dose. It is not the usual mass floral girly thing. It is best-suited, in my opinion, for an opera visit - great and big and perhaps dramatic. I am very contented that it is not widely distributed, and I hope it will be out there for a long, long time!

    22 October, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Sensation for Men by Jean Philippe

    Sweet fresh musk. There is a hard, plasticy accord towards the end that is a lot like the drydowns of most Creeds. Smells like ambergris but really bad synthetic version of it. Poor longevity and not very good sillage.

    22 October, 2009

    Galleddrim's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cuba Red by Cuba Paris

    I really like Cuba Red. It's probably my favorite of the Cuba line that I've tried so far. And I'm a big fan of the Cuba line. It's a real masculine frag that can be had for less than the price of Axe. What's not to love?

    Opens with a woody, dirty cinnamon. I've smelled cinnamon in other frags (like Perry Ellis 360 Red) and haven't liked it. But here it's done right. Balanced with just the right amount of woods. I get a little bit of a coffee note maybe, and then sweet tobacco takes over. Just good stuff, especially for the price. I got my 1.17oz cigar bottle on Amazon for less than $3. No, that's not a typo. Less than THREE DOLLARS. Free shipping. Wow.

    22 October, 2009

    Bigsly's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fever pour Homme by Céline

    This is a dry, spicy/incense/woody, quite similar to Azzaro's Visit, but Visit isn't this dry. I can also see the similarity to Tumulte Pour Homme, but that's a bit too strong and one-dimensional. This is a bit softer and less "synthetic," and thus for me more wearable. Don't expect much in the way of patchouli, though it's listed as a base note. If this is what you seek, I can understand buying this rather than an expensive "niche" fragrance that is very similar (such as the CdG Incense series). Sillage and longevity are at least very good.

    22 October, 2009

    Tony T's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cuba Gold by Cuba Paris

    so many copies of le male. romero britto and the generic designesrs but this is great. of course it does not last as long but still is damn good. great for a baller on a budget!!!!

    22 October, 2009

    Rodolfo's avatar

    Spain Spain

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    Kiehl's Original Musk by Kiehl's

    Honey and rotten flowers in a cheap old lady perfume. Maybe is my chemistry. Disgusting

    22 October, 2009

    A-Train's avatar

    United States United States

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    Abercrombie & Fitch Woods by Abercrombie & Fitch

    After unsuccessfully searching for a bottle of this at a reasonable price, I happened to stumble upon a pretty solid substitute at a friends house. It is called "Ego," and it can be found on www.pureromance.com.
    I sprayed it and it reminded me of A&F Woods right away. So if any of you do not want to pay the ridiculous prices on Ebay for Woods, I would strongly suggest checking this stuff out.

    22 October, 2009

    Buddy97's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Stetson Sierra by Stetson

    Picked up a 30ml bottle of this for €4 as part of online order. Super scent, very reminiscent of original Polo Green. Strong green fragrance with notes of bergamot, pine, leather, jasmine, carnation, oakmoss and cedar. Very masculine, very rugged, very outdoors type of scent. Sillage perhaps not as strong as Polo, which many would say is a good thing, it stays close to the skin but lasts for many hours for a cologne.
    A very capable inexpensive incarnation of the original Polo at about 10% of price. Perhaps the best value I have encountered.

    22 October, 2009

    Ranger's avatar

    United States United States

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    Halston Z-14 by Halston

    Have to agree with Redbeard and the connection to Bel Ami, although I think this is a solid frag. I've had the cocktail shaker bottle of Bel Ami and this is very close to that scent. Not as powerful in my opinion, nor as long lasting, but very good none the less. And for the price, if you like powerful scents and don't want to spring for a bottle of Bel Ami, this is your juice.

    22 October, 2009

    Ranger's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fumerie Turque by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    Probably my favorite Serge Lutens out of the ten I've tried. Very good sillage and longevity. And the scent, well, this may be heretical, but what I smell is an oriental Kouros. I'm not kidding ... the incense, the honey, the edginess, but with the typical Lutens base. It's great stuff.

    22 October, 2009

    JessicaGrace's avatar

    United States United States

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    Iris Silver Mist by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    I'm learning that perfumes that are commonly described as "cool" rarely ever excite me. I like drama and spice. That said, Iris Silver Mist doesn't strike me as scary (like CB Black March) or insipid (like Apres l'Ondee.) It goes on smelling like freshly pulled carrots, which isn't unpleasant. The carrot is joined by a tiny, tiny bit of spice and a lot of cool notes, like fresh earth and cold air. The overall impression is silky smooth and quiet -- maybe too quiet. I keep waiting for something to happen, but no, it's lightly spiced carrots and cool air all the way down. After testing for an hour or so today, I started to get a mild headache, which might or might not be associated with the perfume.

    Certainly nothing unpleasant, but just kind of, eh. I'll keep a little bit of my sample around. Maybe I'll get it some day.

    22 October, 2009 (Last Edited: 24 November, 2009)

    Tedster's avatar

    United States United States

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    Artisan by John Varvatos

    The first 5 - 10 minutes of the orange blossoms are outstanding. The remainder of the (short-lived) fragrance life turns sour on my skin, reminiscent of what I would imagine a barn full of rusted tools and equipment sitting untouched for 50 years might smell like. Bottle is quite unique.

    22 October, 2009

    Mar Azul's avatar

    Bulgaria Bulgaria

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    Gucci pour Homme by Gucci

    Many wood fragrances contain at least traces of smoke or resins. Not in this case. This is fresh cut wooden board. Nothing aged, nothing dry, nothing exotic. I don't get much more than this literal reference except some hints of sweetness, vanilla, amber something in the drydown, but only when it's too late.Besides this hints that never really dominate, it's quite the same till the end. If fresh cut wooden board triggers something special for you, then it works fine. For me it's just too basic: nothing else to challenge it or to make you wonder. If mistery lies in some unusual combination - balanced or paradoxical, or in a note that you cannot recognize or don't expect, or in the metamorphosis of a smell in time, there's no mistery at all in this smell. Nice idea, but too easy to decode. A one trick pony. Yet there are much more complex fragrances which you just can't wear everywhere and on every occasion, while this one can easily be someone's signature scent

    22 October, 2009 (Last Edited: 04 December, 2009)

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Jaïpur by Boucheron

    After a lush peachy opening, JAIPUR descends into a rather nondescript, imminently forgettable floral bouquet. While its feminity is without question, it will be lightyears before it gets anywhere near the class of its younger sibling, Jaïpur Homme. Tenacity however is top notch.

    22 October, 2009

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Eau de Patou (original) by Jean Patou

    I stumbled upon this discontinued fragrance as I was browsing through the aisles of a local discounter. There were no testers handy so I had to buy it blind. And I'm glad I did for other than affordability, EAU DE PATOU is indeed, as its marketing literature suggests, a "subtle melody of sublime floral and fruity notes, perfect for all those unhurried moments, informal meetings and pleasurable days." This is a light citrus scent somewhat reminiscent of Armani's Eau Pour Homme but dries down to a more unisexually wearable combination of amber, moss and civet/musk. Casual, everyday scent IMO. The only potential downside? It comes in a splash bottle.

    22 October, 2009

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Horizon by Guy Laroche

    With its medicinal, almost herbal minty opening I can see why this isn't exactly ringing the cash registers. And probably the reason for its discontinuation too for it simply lacks the pretty opening hook that floors most consumers and loosens their purse strings. A shame really as HORIZON gradually expands into a dark green, mildly aquatic hybrid that is bittersweet yet oddly refreshing, almost like a cool rainfall over a pine forest. Ruggedly masculine without any of Drakkar Noir's macho posturing, Horizon firmly underscores its potential as a cult favorite. Get it cheap while you still can, dudes.

    22 October, 2009

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Jaïpur Homme by Boucheron

    It's funny how often Givenchy Pi gets a mention whenever a powdery vanilla scent is discussed, and more often than not the scent under review would come out tops. But is that really a reflection of the scent's superior construct or more a case of Pi's relative ineptitude? With this question in mind I put JAIPUR HOMME to the test.

    And walked away impressed. Forget Pi, just forget it. Jaïpur Homme is in a different league altogether. While it is similarly powdery, the vanilla sweetness stays light, possibly lifted by the heliotrope in the opening and tempered with the lightly spicy touch of nutmeg and cinnamon in the middle. Once you have mastered the art of applying fragrances, the result is an oriental of such refined sophistication that even my favorite Arpège pour homme finds itself in the shade. Fans of this genre should buy it with confidence for I must say that arguably, Jaïpur Homme is to Boucheron what Shalimar is to Guerlain. SUBLIME.

    22 October, 2009

    costaleo's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    L'Eau D'Issey pour Homme Intense by Issey Miyake

    The best fragance I own, together with A*Man, which is a completely different story. Intense here meaning, just "Intense", and I understant not in comparison wwith the traditional L'eau D'Issey. This fragance never tires me and the harmony in its notes keeps me bringing my wrist up to my nose to feel the fragance.
    Great lasting power, I can still feel it now, after 7 hours I sprayed it on me.

    22 October, 2009

    annalyssa's avatar



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    Patchouli 24 by Le Labo

    I ordered a sample of this from luckyscent and from the first moment, prying off the top on the vial, I knew I was about to experience something strange and exciting.
    This has to be one of the most compelling & unusual scents I've ever tried.

    Patchouli is not what I think of at all when I think of this fragrance. Rather leather, birch tar, burnt sugar (vanilla?) and something like cloves that evoke a very moving "picture". After the first ten minutes or so of total shock, it smelled to me of a cabin with wool blankets in the woods, a cabin that doesn't get used very much..... my co-worker immediately said "holidays" as in spices and blankets and baking. Maybe a tack room in a barn near an orchard.

    Sadly I think it might be a tad too "manly" for me to wear - even though I was completely enthralled - but I might just get a bottle for my boyfriend and borrow it on days when I feel like wearing something beautiful, gritty and evocative. He liked it for himself - after being forced to submit to the sampler-wand during period two of a hockey game - which is saying a lot.
    On my hand it lasted all day and even now when I raise my arm I catch a distinct whiff....
    It's very very special, not for everyone, but SO worth the 3$ plus shipping for a sample at the very least.

    22 October, 2009

    Bane's avatar



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    Hawk by Mennen

    I have but a few drops left of mine. I did find a pic online that could be used in the description of Hawk cologne for men by mennen.

    22 October, 2009

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Muschio di Quercia / Oak Moss by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

    Vetyver, sandalwood, oakmoss
    I have revised my earlier review.
    This is a good scent, with integrity and a faithful rendering of the essential notes. My reservation at this point is that it is rather simple, verging on monolithic.
    Essentially this is a very woody scent. The wood is dry and pleasing. The moss adds a bit of dimension to the wood. The dry-down gains in attractiveness with a more rounded wood note, but this is achieved after several hours.
    But -- and I'm speaking as a wood lover -- that's about all that I find. My earlier review found more complexity, so perhaps my sample has lost some vital dimension.

    22 October, 2009 (Last Edited: 29 January, 2013)

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