Fragrance Reviews from July 2009

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    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aqua Allegoria Rosa Magnifica by Guerlain

    Soapy rose. Rosewater, with a slight tea-like character. If you like roses, it's okay.

    12 July, 2009

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aqua Allegoria Flora Nerolia by Guerlain

    It figures, Guerlain would discontinue THIS one! I love it! In fact, my fingers have been flying furiously over the computer keyboard trying to locate a bottle. Lo and behold one turned up for sale in the marketplace! Lucky me. Now I can douse myself in the potently indolic jasmine yet ever so sheer sweet neroli that stays fresh & light during the most hot, humid dog days of summer. A sprinkling of incense here is like icing on the cake - the perfect accent! Thumbs up.

    12 July, 2009

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Venise / Venice by Yves Rocher

    I get some lavander, sweet with vanilla and an accompanying amber accord. Would make an excellent masculine.

    12 July, 2009

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Verveine by Molinard

    Super citrony in the opening, this verbena frag is refreshing! I agree with foetidus, and feel it is absolutely wearable by women as well.

    12 July, 2009

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Feuilles de Tabac by Miller Harris

    An aromatic and compelling take on tobacco. I agree completely with lilybelle's impressions! An interesting and intelligent presentation of unusual notes. Wearable too, I give it two thumbs up!

    12 July, 2009

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Omnia Green Jade by Bulgari

    Omnia Green Jade is the fraternal twin of Omnia Crystalline - bordering on identical. It is so similar, I cannot see how this fragrance is even warranted. Thumbs down for cloning!

    12 July, 2009

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aqua Allegoria Cherry Blossom by Guerlain

    At first spritz, this smells like Guerlains' Glittering Cherry Blossom, which is basically Bulgari's trademark tea note, and then takes an indolic turn. After reading Asha's review, I 'get' the hairspray smell she's referring to - her commentary is very good (as usual!), but I will give this one a neutral. Mostly because it has a distinct evolution which is creative and it is suprisingly wearable.

    12 July, 2009

    purplebird7's avatar

    United States United States

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    Bazaar by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

    I adore this fragrance. It is a unisex spicy, woody, all-natural perfume. I smell hot and sweet spices, maybe a rose heart and some patchouli, and glorious resins--probably including olibanum and labdanum. The composition is so seamless that the various components mingle to form an Oriental fragrance that is daring yet comforting, something for people who want to go beyond the pale and yet attract positive attention. This is gorgeous.

    12 July, 2009 (Last Edited: 16 July, 2009)

    jimmyfresno's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tobacco Vanille by Tom Ford

    I am finding the Tom Ford line rather clumsy. The fragrances seem to find a favorite student in the class and look at no one else. For examle, the Oud Wood in this line is cedar heavy and too camphorous to allow the artificial oud to peek its head through. Similarly, the Tobacco Vanille is very heavy handed on typical sweet amber, which overwhelms the beautiful fruity floral nuances of true cured tobacco can have.

    This fragrance does not develop into anything noteworthy other than a sweet amber vanilla confection in the middle notes and drydown, with maybe some tobacco drowned somewhere in the glop. I suppose a half spritz would be a great layer for a very dry wood fragrance, but why not plunk the $200 down on something created by a nose who knows what he or she is dealing with? Shame for the price and presumed snootiness that this line seems to want us to buy into.

    12 July, 2009

    jimmyfresno's avatar

    United States United States

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    Oud 27 by Le Labo

    I sampled this fragrance at Barney's in Chicago and was blown away. An initial boozy bourbon and tobacco cedar blast won my heart from the first spritz, since I am a pipe tobacco and wood fragrance lover. So I backed my way out of a sale by telling the lovely salesperson that I'd need to live with it on my skin for a while to decide.

    Walking for an hour on Michigan drive, I smelled my hand and wrist and couldn't resist running back to Barney's. This fragrance is the quintessential mix of tobacco, wood, booze and a whisper of skank that drives me wild. Each of these elements are in perfect proportion so that they interlock and present themselves almost in whole fashion rather than a dissectable composition: tobacco becomes oud becomes civet (almost a parmesan cheesy, cat box funk) with enough white birch to give a camphorous lift and an ambrox envelope to hold everything in perfect synch.

    I was forward enough to justify the extra 10.5% sales tax ($23!) by asking the saleswoman if she would get in trouble by adding some extra base to the custom blended alcohol-juice bottle. She smiled and said, "there is some margin for error."

    I can see not wanting to wear this fragrance every day; it is quite a sturdy, austere scent that stays close to the skin. But I give it a huge thumbs up.

    12 July, 2009

    cheshiredave1's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Lanvin L'Homme Sport by Lanvin

    I tried this in a shop in Chester (UK). If the tester is accurate / genuine , all I got was a slightly sweet camphor, camphor, camphor - i.e. medicinal. The Campari (I like it) of the EDT world. Maybe it was eucalyptus. I really liked it for its unusuality - but, as it wore off, felt that it smelled like clothes in an old drawer that had not been cleared out for a while. So, would not buy. If I try again / do buy this, I will get back with another report if I change my mind. Sorry if that's not too helpful. The botle was dull navy blue(frosted glass? but looked like a lump of plastic) rather than clear, deep blue as in some pics.
    camphor - |ˈkamfər| - noun - a white, volatile, crystalline substance with an aromatic smell and bitter taste, occurring in certain essential oils. • A terpenoid ketone; chem. formula: C 10 H 16 O. So now you know.

    12 July, 2009

    Kentauren's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    Givenchy pour Homme by Givenchy

    I really like the blue version but this smells too "perfumey" för my taste.

    12 July, 2009

    fusion's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ed Hardy Man by Christian Audigier

    I think this is ok, I bought it and gave it to my son and he loves it. lasted about 8 hrs on me recieved a few compliments while wearing it but I really don't care much for it, I think love & luck is a the better E.Hardy fragrance.

    12 July, 2009

    Sugandaraja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    L'Arte di Gucci by Gucci

    This is a quality fragrance, but I should warn that the civet in this latches onto my skin chemistry and shouts from the hill-tops, combining with the rose to form a jammy yet fecal note that makes it unwearable. It's fine on paper though, so sample this one for yourself before hunting down a bottle of this discontinued fragrance.

    I find this a fairly linear rose chypre strong on the animalic elements, a civet-hued moss forming a backdrop to a rose that's somewhere between jammy and transparent, but not particularly natural. Sillage is good and longevity is Herculean.

    If you're looking for a modern replacement, Serge Lutens' Rose de Nuit is related but darker and more complex, using a leathery castoreum instead of civet. Estee Lauder's Knowing is a much more readily available designer, also in a similar floral-chypre vein.

    Update February 2010:

    All the above review still applies, but I have really grown to love this fragrance, and now own a bottle. I guess I'm a lot more tolerant of those funky notes!

    12 July, 2009 (Last Edited: 19 February, 2010)

    bokaba's avatar

    United States United States

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    Acier Aluminium by Creed

    Acier is certainly an interesting scent of whose likes I have not smelled before nor will likely smell again. It opens with a subdued blast of civet, citrus, and creamy florals such as lavender. After the rather unbearable opening, Acier dries down to a sweet musk and vanilla base. Certainly by no means a bad choice, but you could do better.

    12 July, 2009

    Rakhee's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Musc Maori 04 by Parfumerie Generale

    Playful, short lived chocolate, like a smartie.

    12 July, 2009

    Asha's avatar

    United States United States

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    Prada (new) by Prada

    Prada by Prada

    Notes: Bergamot Oil Italian, Orange Oil, Bitter Orange Oil, Mandarin Flower, Mimosa India, Rose Absolute ABS, Schinus Molle ABS LMR, Peru Balsam, Patchouli Oil LMR, Raspberry Flower, Labdanum Resinoide LMR, Tonka Bean ABS LMR, Vanilla Absolute, Musk, Sandalwood Oil (from Sephora.com)

    Upon initial spray of Prada, I smell ozone, vanilla, patchouli, citrus blend, sweet floral notes, and a soft woody accord. The ozone note is strange--not metallic, necessarily, but cold in comparison to the warm wood base. The patchouli in Prada is fairly recognizable as such, but its character almost immediately starts to synergistically blend with the other notes. On the whole, though, Prada is a fairly straightforward and linear woody amber patchouli fragrance with some interestingly darkened floral and citrus notes. It is as if some dried orange peel, rose petals and mild spices (clove, perhaps) were mixed together and stored in an exotic wooden box such as ebony or teak. Take that warm, oriental base, and add some lighter florals similar to what one would find in a traditional Eau de Cologne (orange flower or neroli). The oriental base completely overpowers the light floral notes, but at the same time it is cooled and softened. Eventually, the florals mostly fade, and the fragrance goes out on a base of spices, vanilla, patchouli, labdanum, and some woody aromachemicals which mimic sandalwood. Other reviewers have complained about longevity with Prada. On my skin, it lasts for hours. However, it is not an oriental powerhouse--rather it is a subtle and wearable fragrance which has a pleasingly attractive sweet-dry composition, somewhat along the lines of Chanel Allure Sensuelle or Givenchy Organza Indecence. The drydown is reminiscent of Chanel Egoiste or Bois des Iles, but does not have nearly the complexity. Overall, Prada is a well made, pleasant, wearable fragrance. Even though there is nothing outstanding or ground-breaking about it, Prada has a quality that is understated and quiet. Sometimes that is exactly what I want.

    12 July, 2009

    Asha's avatar

    United States United States

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    Allure Sensuelle by Chanel

    Chanel Allure Sensuelle EDP

    Notes: Bergamot, Mandarin Orange, Pink Pepper, Jasmine, Rose, Iris, Candied Fruit, Vetiver, French Vanilla, Amber Patchouli, Frankincense, Sensual Note (from OsMoz.com)

    When I first apply Allure Sensuelle, I detect aldehydes, vanilla, labdanum, peach, melon, patchouli, rose and a fresh ozone-like note. The watery melon and ozone notes begin to change relatively quickly, and the mid notes reveal the woods to be cedar, or perhaps a cedar and sandalwood blend, along with an amber accord and mixed rich florals. The floral heart is quite classic, and has the refinement that is typical of Chanel. The rose gives a bit of a nod to Coco, however, the context within Allure Sensuelle is far more woody and substantially less loud. The middle development is lovely in a classic way -- woody oriental with luxurious floral notes, not terribly spicy, but nectar-like in the same sense as a rich dessert. The base is very nice, woody and resinous, with an interesting smoky note which could be from incense and vetiver. It sounds great on paper, so I am not sure why I never seem to find any sense of comfort when I first spray Allure Sensuelle. It is as if the perfumer took the head from one fragrance and the body from a different, completely incongruous one. I find the top and early middle to be quite confusing because the top notes simply don't fit with the base. If I am having an off day, this sweet, wet, ozonic top mixed with a rich oriental base can be positively sickening. On the plus side, AS is not terribly linear as its character changes throughout. This one is all about the drydown, in my opinion. AS is pleasant enough, but certainly not one of Chanel's best.

    12 July, 2009

    Asha's avatar

    United States United States

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    Black Orchid by Tom Ford

    Tom Ford Black Orchid EDP

    Notes: Bergamot, Citrus, Mandarin, Black Gardenia, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang, Lotus Wood, Orchid, Spicy Floral Accord, Orchid (Tom Ford Black Accord), Patchouli, Sandalwood, Incense, Vanilla (from Sephora.com)

    Wow! All I can say is...wow, as in, this is really strange stuff! At first, I smell chocolate, mint, a green herbal blend, patchouli, coconut, vetiver, tar, woods, mixed floral notes, and ozone. Soon after, the mid notes reveal some fruit notes, the coconut becoming more dominant along with watery fruits such as watermelon, peach and strawberry. The thing that seems to make this fragrance so strange is that it is watery and fresh while also being bogged down in woody, camphoraceous notes which are quite dirty in comparison. It smells like all the subtle earthy, herbaceous, bitter and floral aromas which blend in a garden are selectively amplified so that each one becomes a caricature of itself. The dirt is more dirty, and smells of woody, dry roots. The herbs and leaves are especially bitter and pungent. The florals are neon in both color and scent quality, elevated to the point of almost being monstrous. And yet, I am sort of enjoying Black Orchid. It has the theatrical exaggeration that I would expect of a man eating plant in an alien's garden. I find it interesting and enjoyable and a tad shocking in a good way, but I am not sure I would be inclined to wear it on a regular basis.

    12 July, 2009

    Galleddrim's avatar

    United States United States

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    Green Irish Tweed by Creed

    Mmmmm . . . Green Irish Tweed. This hyped up fragrance did not disappoint. Has a bright and fresh opening with a very unique heartnote and a very distinctive drydown. It is hard to even explain. Has to be experienced. After trying the little 1oz bottle I got from FragranceNet.com, I immediately ordered the 8oz flacon. It's WAY cheaper that way, per ounce, and I know it's one I'll want to have around like . . . forever.

    Also, GIT consistently gets me the most compliments. Dance instructor, check. "Wow. You smell GOOD." Female coworker, check. Walking into the room, "Whoa. Someone in here smells AMAZING."

    Bottom line: Get GIT. Can't go wrong.

    12 July, 2009

    Galleddrim's avatar

    United States United States

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    Silver Mountain Water by Creed

    Silver Mountain Water smells wonderful. A bright cheerful fragrance. I really love smelling it, even if it is a bit unisex. The problem is that it is way to weak, especially for the price point. And on me, it only lasts for about an hour or so. GIT lasts me several. Rather than buying this again, I'll probably look for another frag that has the same "vibe" but better longevity. Hopefully about half the price too.

    12 July, 2009

    Surfacing's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Burberry London for Men by Burberry

    Burberry London

    I bought this fragrance semi-blind. All I knew is that it had sweet base notes from a carded sample and was at a good price for me. The bottle and name had me interested as well. The opening notes to me were strange, as I was at the time only really familiar with either very sharp top notes or citrus. This was neither. London's opening actually put me off a bit; I got some cinnamon and some other notes. Hard for me to say, although the odd thing is, is that I no longer detect the same top notes as I once did. The cinnamon now seems much more subdued and hardly noticeable. Perhaps my senses have adapted to the opening. A few minutes and sometimes instantaneously, the fragrance gets to some somewhat sweet and what is known as "port wine" in the notes smell. Also hint of woods as well. Its nice, although when I first had my bottle I was certain I could not live with this.

    On my skin, after 30 minutes and sometimes less, it becomes more apparent that London is revealing the dry woods and tobacco like scent. The first time I got that this was what London was about, I was stunned. This was it. What I had always longed for in a fragrance. A wearable and yet realistic tobacco scent. Within a few days I grew to love this fragrance and it became one of my favorites. It went from my dustbin, where I was sure I had to find someone to take it from me, to my shelve where it was admired.

    After the first hour and on for the next 6 hours London is pretty much a dry woods/tobacco scent for me with touches of sweetness as well. After 7 hours London starts to move to the very base of the fragrance where it becomes a bit powdery and a very pleasant sweet. Not the same sweetness shown earlier in the fragrance, but this base seems to have the tonka and vanilla thing going on. Its basically what I had smelled on the sample card before.

    It does not take me very long to get bored of a fragrance, but after all this time I still love London. I sometimes go too long without wearing it, due to trying out samples and justifying my other bottle purchases. I often wonder why I go so long without it, because I miss London and putting it on just feels so right. Sometimes I even "blend" it with other scent, especially in Summer when I want to keep this sprayed only on my arms ( and away from chest/neck). 3 sprays is my usual application ( 1 to neck and 1 to each arm). No harm in doing 4 or 5 sprays once in a while. But either way, I get a good 8 hours longevity, if not more from London. It is still present after 10 or 12 hours on myself. The projection is good as well. Not a sillage monster or won't create a massive aura, but I personally do not want that. The smell of this fragrance to me is also special because the notes/accords are so realistic and natural smelling. The bottle is very tastefully done and feels very cozy.

    12 July, 2009

    kess's avatar

    United States United States

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    Castoreum by AbdesSalaam Attar Profumo

    Not sure if my sample have mellowed out, but I was expecting something more pungent and animalitic. Instead, upon the immediate application, I smell birch tar, and then something leathery-sweet-smoky. Surprisingly, I could see myself wearing it just by itself.

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aspen for Men by Coty

    I really wanted to like this one, and early on I did completely. I still love the top notes, and always want to soak myself in it because it's so refreshingly unsweet. So there I stay for a while, high on the mountaintop in the crisp, idealized pine-forest air, and I gradually forget about it. Hours later, I smell my shirt to see what happened, and much to my dismay only dead crumbling leaves remain of the beautiful forest...very disappointing. Maybe I just need to go for broke and apply a ton of it, under the theory that it's cheap, clean and inoffensive enough to do so. But, man, if there's something out there with Aspen top notes lasting all day, I'd be all over it. That might just have to be Cool Water (sorry, guys)...the bottles and the opening phases are, after all, uncannily similar.

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Azzaro pour Homme by Azzaro

    A lot of people say this is similar to Tuscany (or I guess vice versa) and I agree. Herbal and masculine. I find Azzaro soapier and more anisy, without the citrus...strong at the beginning but suffering more loss of strength with time than Tuscany does. It's as if Tuscany had a quieter older brother who starts out trying to be just as bold. He succeeds somewhat, but then becomes more introverted and melancholic once you've left him to his own devices for a while. Once he's done making a big entrance for the guests at the party, he retires to his bedroom to sit quietly in his stiff suit and read Poe. By the drydown, Azzaro has fallen into the background, having become powdery and boring. It frustrates me that this stuff doesn't bother to keep my interest more during the drydown with anything noticeably nose-catching. A similar but not identical fate to that of Rive Gauche. The verdict: Bring me my Tuscany!

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    English Leather by Dana

    Saddlesoap and flowers, as I sometimes think of it. I think the barbershop that my mom always took me to as a small child smelled like this, and I only recently realized it. I guess it's mostly old-fashioned flowery soap with a little bit of something incensey? I struggled with whether it's so flowery as to be effeminate, but I think that this question is ultimately moot with English Leather. It's more of a clean-man than a manly-man scent, and I'm sure that's how it was intended: for fine, upstanding, well-groomed, clean-shaven gentlemen in their offices, hard at work during a time of post-war prosperity. Naturally it's not as strong as all the later EdTs, but since I'm sure this was meant more as an splash-on augmentation to one's aftershave than as a statement on its own, I won't criticize it for weakness. A fairly good cheapy.

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Preferred Stock by Coty

    A top of citrus and spicy wood, evolving into a pleasantly sweet smoky base. This seems to be a bit of a controversial cheapy, but like NaturalBornThrilla I enjoy it and take it very seriously among them. It's somewhere in the space between orange peels, incense, cigars, and a roaring campfire, and it conveys a smoky intrigue that I like a lot, with less sweetness than actual incense. You can get surprisingly lost in it if you breathe deeply; it's maybe a little like Drakkar Noir with less sour fruit and a purer honey-like sweetness, and to me brings about images of slightly crass middle-aged executives smoking in a wood-panelled board room. Rather than getting a BO quality as some do, I find mostly cigarettes and burnt firewood in the base. I agree that too much of this would asphyxiate everyone around you, though. And props to them for the financial double-entendre name.

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tuscany / Etruscan by Aramis

    This is an herbal slap in the face by a sharply-dressed 40-year-old Italian playboy millionaire. It's a bit harsh at first, with a strong natural lemon note, but it soon becomes much smoother and more woody, and apologizes a bit for initially overpowering you. To me, it is the lemon that gives this the right to be called Tuscany, though probably a Tuscan autumn rather than summer because of the slight nip in the air that the herbs convey to me. It really makes me envision a small town in northern Italy, as featured in countless Olive Garden commercials, or, alternatively, a crisp golden november evening in the semi-desert scrubland where I grew up, east of LA. This is unambiguously man-juice, but not in such a brash way that you wish it would just shut up after a while, like some of the other 80s kick-you-in-the-balls scents. Sometimes I worry that it's too strong, but if you spray conservatively, you're probably OK. From the ones I've smelled, Aramis in general maintains a line of men's fragrances that still smell satisfyingly like men's fragrances.

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Zino Davidoff by Davidoff

    I think one of my friend's dads wore this during my childhood, or something damn close. It's a fatherly scent: calm, reassuring and mature, and clearly masculine even though it's fairly sweet in its own unique way. The peachy-beige color and perfect smoothness of the cap, along with the rich sepia of the bottle, match the scent remarkably well. This may be the creamiest wood smell I've enountered, which I really identify with for whatever reason. It changes a lot; namely, the opening is quite dry and sharp in a desert sagebrush sort of way. I honestly don't like the first 10 minutes or so, but once that sharp topnote clears up, it gets right on track as a creamy wood with the moderate sweetness of something that remindes me of vanilla but probably isn't. At this point, Zino is almost exactly where I want to be, something that I would like to smell like, and I don't say that about as many colognes in my collection as I wish I could.

    12 July, 2009

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    English Leather Black by Dana

    This cheapy really does smell "black" to me. It's sweet and woody, and the darkly-stained wooden cap kind of alludes to what they were going for. I didn't notice it evolving much, but it makes me think of nicely-finished ebony or some other exotic hardwood, with a little leather in there too. I got a 1.7 oz (a monster size for me) for next to nothing. It's not really that strong, and I think it merits 3-4 sprays where I might normally do 2 but it took me a while to realize that. I don't think this would surprise anyone in a bad way or a good way. I was thinking of getting rid of it in favor of more expensive brands, but then I realized that nothing I've owned or even tried has had quite this type of polished wood vibe, so I kept it for its uniqueness.

    12 July, 2009

    Showing 361 to 390 of 1235.