Fragrance Reviews from October 2009

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    Celsius32's avatar

    Israel Israel

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    Chrome by Azzaro

    If you can get over the metalic/sunthentic note in this one then you might like it. I don't.

    07th October, 2009

    Celsius32's avatar

    Israel Israel

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    Unforgivable by Sean John

    I've finally found a store in my small country (Israel) that caries both MI and Unforgivable, so I could test them side by side (or wrist by wrist).

    "Unforgivable" on my skin smells like "MI" that went bad (sour). Before I did the test I was hoping that it will be as similar as GIT to CW...but guys, this isn't the case. MI is in a different league.

    Longevity/projection is average. I personally can't get over the sour smell it has on my skin (I have a similar experience with Original Ralph Lauren - smells like an ash tray on me).

    07th October, 2009

    mike77555's avatar



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    Open Road by Avon

    when is this product coming out?
    an open road by avon was released a few year ago but now ui cant find it anymore.
    is this the same with a small change?

    07th October, 2009

    shamu1's avatar

    United States United States

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    Gianfranco Ferré for Man by Gianfranco Ferré

    A refined Eighties powerhouse that for some reason has been forgotten by most. I find this amazing because Ferre For Man is one of the best fragrances from that era.

    This is what quality leather fragrances should smell like. The leather here is sweet, smooth and sexy, and it pervades the life of the scent. Ferre For Man certainly has that 80s smell, with its herbal lemon opening and strong oakmoss. Everything blends together so perfectly. This is such an elegant and beautiful scent. Even though it's beautiful, this is still a strong one. It may not have sinus-destroying power like Oscar de la Renta Pour Lui, but it's still a powerhouse. Like most Eighties colognes, this is a manly scent, with all-day staying power and good sillage.

    I don't cry over reformulations, but I feel something needs to be said about the reformulation of this. The version with the all-metal black bottle is a reformulation, and it has atrocious longevity and weak sillage. The scent has remained intact, but don't expect a strong fragrance. Get the version that has glass at the top of the bottle if you can find it. This is the stronger version of the two.

    MY RATING: 10/10

    07th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 17th March, 2011)

    KIG's avatar

    United States United States

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    Moschino pour Homme by Moschino

    As it dries down, Moschino delivers the unsweetened version of amber, leather and moss. The bite of mace is very intriguing at least.
    Longevity and silage are both excellent on my skin. Definitely a fall, winter frag. The output is very intense for about an hour, but then it mellows into a gorgeous, deep, very well made scent. I love wearing it.
    MPH deserves more attention than a ton of 80’s pretenders. Actually, it is one of the very best, not dated at all. You can easily wear it nowadays, and some people may wonder if it's a new release. The problem is finding it...

    07th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 13th January, 2012)

    Zgb's avatar

    Croatia Croatia

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    Burberry London for Men by Burberry

    Classy, arrogant, a bit uptight, conservative, but once you get to know him he is open, warm, humorous, yet calm. That is me, that is this Burberry London. Beautiful!

    Update - a lot of folks complain about longevity, but I get 10 + hours with quite a good projection.

    07th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 31st March, 2012)

    Swanky's avatar

    United States United States

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    Chanel Pour Monsieur Concentrée by Chanel

    At risk of blasphemy, I have to pronounce this updated version a winner. It lasts all day without degenerating into a diaphanous drydown. The scent starts as a citrus; within seconds it turns spicy and rich, playing Elvis to Obsession's impersonator. The voila moment, however, comes when the smoky wood takes over. This classy gentleman remains front and center, like Robert Walker in "Strangers On A Train" looking straight ahead while everyone else is looking side to side. Chanel's quality is evident at all times and this is the perfect choice for fall or winter when you want an elegant, mature vibe. One or two sprays suffice; this one can be a powerhouse if overindulged.

    07th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 18th May, 2012)

    Bigsly's avatar

    United States United States

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    Zino Davidoff by Davidoff

    The original bottle is great (as pictured above), one of my favorites, but I would never wear the new one (with Davidoff in block letters on the front of the bottle). Here's the story: I had the new one first and swapped it off, though I kept a small decant. Then I had an opportunity to get a bottle for very little so I thought I'd buy it for swapping purposes. The bottled leaked a bit in the box, and when I smelled it I thought to myself that a great sandalwoody incense note was present, which I didn't remember with the first bottle I had. I did a side by side comparison and sure enough it wasn't there in the block letter decant.

    The importance of this note is huge to me, but clearly not to everyone. For me, it "cuts" the lavender, amber, etc. and provides incredible dynamism, contrast, and balance. The block letter version smells like "amateur hour" to me, with some sort of fuzzy, generic woody note that enhances the cloying qualities of the lavender, amber, etc. The original is also drier and has better note separation. If you are in this for the aficionado aspect but are a newbie, I strongly advise that you find the original, which is still selling at reasonable prices on ebay (just be sure to determine that it is the one without Davidoff in block letters, because they sometimes picture the original bottle but sell you the new one).

    My old review (October, 2009): As a "newbie," I thought of this as combination of Terre d'Hermes, Unagaro II, and Jovan Sex Appeal for Men. So, I guess you could say that I agree with Strollyourlobster's review. I don't know if I'd enjoy it now (haven't sampled it since those early days), but I really don't think I would, especially considering the strong lavender note. I'll stick with fragrances such as PdN's New York or Z-14, because not only do I enjoy those, but I think they have a "mission statement" of sorts, whereas Zino is just "all over the place." I would also prefer to "layer" two or more fragrances. I think this may be a safe "blind buy," however, if you are familiar with the notes as well as somewhat similar fragrances. Because it's not for me, I'll have to give it a neutral.

    07th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 22nd September, 2012)

    Tony T's avatar

    United States United States

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    Polo Modern Reserve by Ralph Lauren

    a tolerable green but not fresh scent. the patchouli is undetectable and after a half hour or so it astonishes the senses. not at all sexy but manly and confident. paul bunyan would wear this and go home and you know what to his wife all night. green and informal but casual and manly. it also last all day. a bit pricey but i got it for a steal on ebay!!!!!

    07th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 11th March, 2013)

    JaimeB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lyric Man by Amouage

    Top Notes: Bergamot, Lime
    Middle Notes: Rose, Angelica, Orange Blossom, Galbanum, Ginger, Nutmeg, Saffron
    Base Notes: Pine, Sandalwood, Vanilla, Musk, Incense
    A rose is a rose, is a rose... but in this case, so much more than a rose! The spicy and oriental notes abound to escort and support the rich, pure Damask rose in this scent. Her only floral competition is orange blossom, and the rest of the spicy, resinous crew make her smell pretty green and just a little bit earthy. This is going to be a trip to wear!

    08th October, 2009

    Joshaugustt's avatar



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    Silver by Etienne Aigner

    SILVER IS A GREAT FRAGRANCE BUT ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO FIND. MAYBE ONCE IN A BLUE MOON ON EBAY. IT'S A FRESH, WARM, AND VERY CLEAN SMELLING SCENT THAT YOU JUST CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF. IT HAS VERY SOLID LASTING POWER AND IS CLASSY ALL THE WAY AROUND. IT'S POSSIBLE TO FIND A MINI SILVER EVERY SO OFTEN AND IT'S WORTH TRYING IT. CAN'T GO WRONG. JOSH

    08th October, 2009

    LiveJazz's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Homme Sage by Divine

    L'Homme Sage is an excellent scent. I understand the critiques that it doesn't really have a "quirk" about it, but at the same time, what really smells like it? It's one of those scents that manages to seem familiar, strong and comforting even though it stands alone. To me, this is a mark of greatness.

    The fact that reviewers are so diverse in their impressions of L'Homme Sage is also telling. It features an array of contrasting notes that really seem to fit together like puzzle pieces - this is an exquisitely blended fragrance that, upon multiple wears, reveals some deep, deep hidden characteristics.

    The opening for me is dry, parched fruit and spices. This is not juicy fruit or refreshing fruit, but sun-baked fruit with all sweetness removed - fruit essence. Incense starts creeping in almost immediately and for me, it's a dominant figure throughout the evolution of the scent. As the opening salvo of fruit essence and exotic spices fade to the background, a resinous, parched, smoky, woody, amber accord comes into play.

    I never quite understood the meaning of the word "resinous" in reference to fragrance before. L'Homme Sage made me understand. Here it is a half-burnt, oily wood aroma, combined with a dusty amber note. A good helping of oakmoss gives the base an uncommon depth and richness. You can almost feel it enter your nose swirl around your olfactory nerves.

    Like L'Air du Desert Marocain, everything about this scent is arid, but where that scent is like dry rocks and spices, this is like dry timbers, aged with years of incense smoke. Little traces of background notes flit in and out. A little soil here, a little green there, some pepper peeking out over yonder.

    Anyway, I strongly recommend it. You could spend months familiarizing yourself with this gem. It is nuanced and fascinating while always remaining immensely wearable and strangely familiar.

    08th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 02nd December, 2009)

    LiveJazz's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cannabis Santal by Fresh

    Sweet, light, simple and boring. I smell an unidentifiable sugary/powdery accord that almost completely fails to interest me. There is a hint of creamy nuttiness to it, if you concentrate, but other than that, there just doesn't seem to be anything behind it. I don't smell any chocolate.

    08th October, 2009

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Kiehl's Coriander Essence Oil by Kiehl's

    This scent was formulated in 1946, and it is interesting to imagine it in the latter years of WW2 since it is an unusual, minimalist sort of scent. It starts off a bit sweet, but in the ultimate dry-down it gets satisfyingly dry. The coriander oil is the main ingredient; though I imagine I detect a hint of orange rind at the opening, and a bit of patchouli in the latter stages. As with the spice, the oil here is nutty, a bit sweet, spicy and aromatic, “brown” and appetizing. At times the scent has a coconut-like character in its early stages. The scent settles into an earthy, even slightly foresty tone that is quite pleasant and sits close to the skin. As an oil, it sits close to the skin and develops slowly.

    08th October, 2009

    trebizond's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    John Varvatos by John Varvatos

    Very rich and plummy fragrance, but with a definite woody hard centre holding it all together well. I tend to wear Varvatos when the weather gets cooler (although here in the UK it's never blazingly hot) because it's a very rounded and deep scent. For some reason I keep getting the image of a fig in my mind, not particularly for it's scent, more for the construction. Defined edges, definite squishiness, but with some hard seeds inside.

    The only slight let-down with Varvatos is that it does't particularly progress, at least on my skin. The immediate orotund opening isn't overwhelming, but isn't weak either. Then it just slowly, slowly, gets weaker and weaker. There isn't any development of complexity, so it just fades away. Slowly, though - longevity is pretty good, and sillage is pretty good too.

    08th October, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Wild Fern by Geo F Trumper

    A soapy shampoo. Bitter and green. Just clean clean clean before fresh was the new style of fragrance.

    08th October, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Eau de L'Eau by Diptyque

    I don't too much of the cloves from the former L'eau but I find this to be an outstanding citrusy cologne water with floral herbs. A huge thumbs up from me. That is, if it lasted longer. The opening is big and bold and screams and is really good at it but gets hoarse after a few sentences. The scent is refreshing and good. I'm torn on this.

    08th October, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    L'Eau de Neroli by Diptyque

    Best BASIC neroli based cologne water I've ever tried. Bright and crisp with geranium note that is easy to detect (so if you don't like geranium don't spray this on). If you are looking of a deep neroli or something with more complex, try out Penhaligon's Castile or C&S's Neroli. This would be good for a "spritz n' wake up" type of dealie but for the price, nah. Go with something else. But I really do like this scent.

    08th October, 2009

    Bigsly's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tuscany / Etruscan by Aramis

    I prefer Z-14 and Oscar Pour Lui to this. I don't like the lavender and it doesn't soften up, as Z-14 does. Otherwise, this is a simple and straightforward masculine that reflects the year it was first marketed. I think Cuba Black is an attempt to copy this, but I haven't sampled that in so long I can't say for sure. If so, it was a decent copy. If you don't have any idea what this might smell like, from the notes and period, sample it first. If you do, then it's probably a safe blind buy, though you might think that the sillage and/or longevity is not quite as strong as you'd like.

    08th October, 2009

    Bigsly's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cuba Black by Cuba Paris

    I think this is an attempt to create a Tuscany type of fragrance. Because I haven't sampled CB in many months, I can't say for sure. I don't like this particular formulation of an "80s power frag," but instead prefer ones like Z-14 and Oscar Pour Lui. Because those two are so inexpensive (and better, at least to me), I suggest sampling those first. So, this isn't bad but there probably isn't any reason to get it, even at the very low prices it sells for, unless you sample all of these and prefer this one (which I doubt will be the case).

    08th October, 2009

    L'Aventurier's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Honoré's Trip by Honoré de Prés

    Yuck. I got a tangerine and lemon opening with a touch of red peppers and rubbing alcohol. It's sad, but Honore's Trip is seriously so light that the alcohol overpowers the fragrance itself. A total ripoff and a joke of a fragrance. The only fragrance I've come across that literally lasted less than 20 minutes on my skin.

    I want to give this a neutral because I appreciate the fact that this is organic and all-natural, but I can't. Although it has potential to be a good fragrance, they totally copped out on the percentage of essential oils here, especially with the price they're charging for a bottle. It smells like 0.1% oils and 99.9% alcohol and therefore it's totally not worth trying.

    5/10

    08th October, 2009 (Last Edited: 30th November, 2009)

    glitteralex's avatar

    United States United States

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    Insolence Eau de Toilette by Guerlain

    Sadly, this perfume reminds me of a rancid fruit salad in a diaper pail. On top of that, the ingredients smell cheap and synthetic. An embarassment for Guerlain.

    2 months later: I have given this another attempt. I think this is the worst use of violet-one of my favorite notes-I could imagine. Also, the plastic-iris drydown is loathsome. It has a very tenacious longevity and a shouting sillage. My daughter and her friend commented on "how disgusting' I smelled when wearing it....

    08th October, 2009

    vintage*red's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ed Hardy Man by Christian Audigier

    This stuff is sooo good that I tracked down the scent at work. A young man came forward and admitted that it was he who smelled great! Everyone else (women) agreed. Something about this fragrance makes me think of Mitsouko. OK. It is not Mitsouko (what is?), but it has just enough sillage and staying power to make my day! It is one of those fragrances that may not be inspiring, but it is pleasant and certainly appropriate for the work environment. Not too sweet, not too tart, not too mossy...it hits that dead center that is comfortable. I know that I will be buying this as Christmas gifts. Maybe I'll get some for my husband so that I can occasionally spritz myself. He doesn't know it yet, but he is also getting Bulgari Black!

    08th October, 2009

    soirdelune's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    1000 by Jean Patou

    So, so lovely. And now discontinued. A real tragedy.

    For me, 1000 is one of the most glorious treatments of the violet note in all perfumery. Unlike the beautiful, but aldeydic, Le Dix, 1000 is both violetty and creamy. Perhaps this is the partnering with osmanthus. I wouldn't know.

    1000 knows its own mind, and so does its wearer. It is by no means mainstream, but nor is it avant-garde. Rather, it is stately, accomplished, confident, and unabashedly assured of its own excellence. It is unapologetic in its quality, in a way that only Patou scents could ever be.

    How very sad I am that this scent is now gone. I am fortunate enough to own a bottle of the extrait, and will treasure it always. Overlooked luxury and splendour.

    08th October, 2009

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Angélique Encens by Creed

    This is another fragrance I could easily bathe in -if it were readily available ! I rate this as otherworldly- the same way I rate Vol de Nuit ,Apres L'Ondee .... To me, this is a masterpiece.

    I get perhaps a very light tuberose,floral ....lavender and powder and then it deepens to this gorgeous, violetty ,incensey, dramatic vanilla ,with a touch of amber on my skin. I love this ! It's not overpowering at all - just kinds of stays wispy on my skin . The name seems very appropriate.

    Since being reunited with this lovely scent- what have I done but look longingly at the various places online, in London that may ship safely abroad !

    08th October, 2009

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Jasmin et Cigarette by Etat Libre d'Orange

    Etat Libre d'Orange is a little quirky and very interesting. it's almost like they don't care too much what people think - take it or leave it !
    The name may put people off and maybe reading that there is tumeric in it . Well when I first put this on - I got sweet floral Jasmine - a really good jasmine actually with a hint of zing from the tobacco. The tabacco is not very strong at all- it remains a mere hint throughout and if I really really put my mind to it- yes, there is a slight suggestion of 'ashtray' but don't let that put you off !
    The tumeric is not to be feared either - I think it's in there for edge .
    All in all this is a pretty jasmine perfume with that naughty edge to it. For sinners ! It's quite delicious even - with the apricot /tonka bean notes .
    Absolutely nothing to fear !
    A good one !

    08th October, 2009

    AnimaSola's avatar

    United States United States

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    Emporio Armani Diamonds for Men by Giorgio Armani

    I almost bought this blind on an airline duty-free. I am so glad I didn't. It smells cloying and annoyingly and unusually saccharine. The cook overdid it with the ingredients. Armani fragrances are for the birds.

    08th October, 2009

    sliver1's avatar



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    YSL pour Homme Haute Concentration by Yves Saint Laurent

    Mmmmmm, what a trip!

    YSL Pour Homme Haute Concentration really takes me back! I was given a sample of this in the early 90's and loved it; on my next trip to London (hailing from the sticks ) I bought a full-bottle in Harrods. Unfortunately, being young and careless, I purchased the original Pour Homme and not the concentration; my best friend told me, gleefully, that it smelt like 'Lemon Pledge' (for the benefit of readers not in the UK -Lemon Pledge is furniture polish!) and I was bereft that I'd spent two weeks wages (I was at college then) on a scent I didn't (and still don't) like at all.

    Eventually I got around to getting the Concentration and some sixteen years later am wondering why I have never, until now, purchased it again. Probably because I grew into the more agressive Antaeus and was at that kind of age when you change your fragrances all the time. When I tried to get some a few years later it seemed like it had dissapeared altogether.

    This is simplicity itself. Yes, the lemon is very prevalent but I cannot detect the sour note that a lot of readers have mentioned. It's gentle, masculine but not macho (unlike (PUKE!) the hideousness that is Kourous) and very comforting. It's like you've sprayed yourself in a goodbye hug...THAT kind of goodbye hug, not the kind you'd get from your Father! You catch wafts of it throughout the day and just feel sensual, clean and confident.
    It mellows beautifully, the citrus settles down without dissapearing altogether, and warmer notes come forefront ensuring it can be detected hours after application. Yes, this fella packs a punch so go easy on the application (although personally it wouldn't bother me if you've showered in it.) It's also that rare thing - Pour Homme Haute Concentration is oblivious to time and occasion. It's perfect around both the clock and the seasons, adjusting itself with ease to any social occasion be it work, a formal dinner party, the amped-up, sweaty atmosphere of a club and those more (cough) intimate gatherings. Another big plus is its (now) relative obscurity, meaning it's not worn by absolutely everybody . This will stand out much more than any fragrance from Calvin awful Klein or Le Bland-and-Boring by Jean Paul Gaultier

    As Backtable put it, YSL Pour Homme Concentration is class-in-a-bottle. A timeless masterpiece.

    08th October, 2009

    JessicaGrace's avatar

    United States United States

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    Un Lys by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    I am learning that I don't care for lily in anything more than a supporting role. The first few stages of this perfume were OK, with the lilly supported and diffused in vanilla and soft musk. But pretty soon the other notes seemed to fall away and it was lilly, lilly, lilly. To my nose, lillies are shrill and overpowering. For someone who appreciates lillies, this perfume would probably be lovely.

    08th October, 2009

    JessicaGrace's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tubéreuse Criminelle by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    This is the first "tuberose" fragrance I've tried. I was warned about the top notes, and yes, they do smell like wintergreen with a whiff of diesel fuel. The smell close to my wrist remained like this for quite a while, but the silage that drifted up to me -- and it was quite strong, despite having applied only a dab or two -- was a white floral. But what a white floral! Heavily indolic, it smelled familiar, and not in a pleasant way. Hopelessly old-fashioned and heavy. A fur coat in mothballs, wrapped in plastic. Shag carpet recently steamed with an industrial strength cleaner and still wet. The open-casket funeral of a wealthy great-aunt. Wow.

    I wonder if I will ever dare try another tuberose. I'm sure I'll test this again someday when my nose is more educated, though probably on fabric. I can't imagine ever putting this on my skin again. I'll edit my review if anything changes. For now, thumbs down.

    08th October, 2009

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