Fragrance Reviews from August 2009

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    1OldGI's avatar



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    Clubman by Pinaud

    This one was the amazing discovery of the summer. Just a great, very clean, powdery leather smell with plenty of staying power. I reach for this one often and I'm sure it will be a staple in my fragrance stable. Probably the best value for the money I have thus far encountered

    19 August, 2009

    1OldGI's avatar



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    Lilac Vegetal by Pinaud

    Yes, I am indeed a Lilac Vegetarian! Admittedly the scent from the bottle is less than captivating and often compared to urinal cakes, bums with urine stained trousers, etc. Get past the surprising bottle note and you're on your way to something totally magic. As has been pointed out, this fragrance totally transforms within a couple minutes of application.

    After drydown there is this delightful flowery powdery scent that is absolutely amazing. My shave den would not be without it.

    19 August, 2009

    1OldGI's avatar



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    Lime Sec by Pinaud

    Wouldn't go so far as to say it's awful but it is pretty sweet and initially it smelled as if I'd sprayed myself down with Lemon Pledge furniture polish. I've recently found it quite compatible with Clubman Bay Rum after shave. The spicy notes seem to tone down Lime Sec's almost cartoonish sweetness while leaving a hint of citrusy goodness. Just OK for this one

    19 August, 2009

    Igor2610's avatar



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    Dunhill Black by Dunhill

    Nice unique fragrance; really liked Dunhill Pursuit and like this just as much. Not brilliant lasting power though.

    19 August, 2009

    jbd's avatar

    United States United States

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    Parfums Intimes: Cashmere by Victoria's Secret

    very yummy, very vanilla w/hint of jasmine
    i normally wear Angel by Thierry Mugler, however i find it a bit strong during the hot summer days...
    it's only day 1, but i am already more relaxed, imagine at work feeling relaxed?!!!??
    great shopping trip on lunch break

    19 August, 2009

    Kirsten's avatar

    United States United States

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    Après L'ondée by Guerlain

    I ordered a sample of the Apres L'Ondee parfum from The Perfumed Court - it was part of their Guerlain sample collection. I'd had a rather rough day at work and thought I'd try one of my new samples as a pick me up. After a drop on my wrist, the perfume immediately began living up to its name, "After the Rain." It lifted my heart and spirit, and really felt like its name, the sun breaking through storm clouds. Here in Colorado, the air is really dry. Anytime we get rain, you can smell it in the air and it intensifies the smell of the flowers in your garden. AL'O captures that freshness without being one of those single note perfumes that go by the name of "dirt" or "grass." The scent manages to be light and yet complex - a truly difficult balance which Guerlain carried out beautifully. The dry down for the parfum strength was nothing short of amazing. It's the warm of sun in the air after it rains, slightly earthy (I think that's the iris coming through). There was a hint of powder, but nothing remotely in the "old lady, mom's make up drawer" smell. I love the way this melded with my skin. The sillage, even in the parfum, was minimal - though that could have been because I was stingy with my sample. In short, this is purely lovely.

    I wrote Guerlain and asked a couple of questions; when I get any answers I'll post them. Specifically, I wanted to know if they really didn't export Apres L'Ondee to the States because of low demand here (hoping that the more emails they get asking the question, maybe that'd help change their mind...) I also asked if there were any plans to bring it back in either an EDP or parfum, even as a limited edition.

    I've read your reviews that say the EDT doesn't last very long, so I'm curious to see how that'd work on me. I'm thinking that if I use a non-scented moisterizer it may help the scent hold longer.

    Has anyone tried Dans Tes Bras? Maurice Roucel concocted it and gives credit to Apres L'Ondee for part of its inspiration. Just wondering, since AL'O is so hard to find, and even then in just the EDT, if this would be anything close to it.

    19 August, 2009

    Gump's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lemon Velvet by Avon

    I loved this fragrance back in 1972. Does Avon still make it?

    19 August, 2009

    ortho123's avatar

    United States United States

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    Zirh by Zirh

    Coming from someone who wears stuff like Aramis and Quorun, I'm suprised I like this stuff so much. Frankly this is one of those scents like Bulgari PH which you can't smell but others do, and you smell it later yes, a subtle spice edged in brightness.

    19 August, 2009 (Last Edited: 27 March, 2012)

    Amit's avatar

    India India

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    Musk by Lorenzo Villoresi

    In one word : GHASTLY.

    As unfortunate as it does sound, this is the only Villoresi scent I truly detest. Unbelievably synthetic from the get-go, It almost chokes me in a vice grip of very intensely done powdery accords, which otherwise would've been enjoyable had then been less synthetic. A complete synth bomb from top to bottom.

    20th August, 2009

    Quarry's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ponn Farr by Star Trek

    It's aquatic!?!?! Huh. The second surprise is that, for an aquatic, it's fairly good. A little more surprising was its longevity.

    Rating? You know I don't want to use a thumb to connote anything. Would rather spread four fingers to form a V.

    Thanks, Whisperingleaves, for providing intergalactic sensations!

    20th August, 2009

    Prince Barry's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Fahrenheit Absolute by Christian Dior

    Straight away I could smell the oudh faintly mixed in with incense and myrrh, such a perfect combination. On my skin, I noticed that the violet leaf was a lot more subdued and in the background compared to the original. The drydown has definately got the myrrh more emphasized with it's signature dry woody smell.

    I'm sure that Fahrenheit/woody/oudh lovers will not be disapointed by this one. Well done Dior.

    20th August, 2009

    scentsitivity's avatar

    United States United States

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    Impérial Opoponax by Les Néréides

    A warm, comforting and sensual take on opoponax. Sweet (but not excessively so), spicy and resinous. Great longevity. And quite reasonably priced! I hope to buy bottle soon.


    Update: October 2010. I did buy a bottle in the autumn of 2009. I am quite pleased with it still. I think it wears much better in cooler weather - the opening seems almost buttery to me in warmer weather. Unlike most fragrances, which I enjoy to "bury nose in wrist", with this I prefer to enjoy the ambiance it creates.

    20th August, 2009 (Last Edited: 28 October, 2010)

    bokaba's avatar

    United States United States

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    Alyssa Ashley Musk by Alyssa Ashley

    Alyssa Ashley is your basic musk redolent with all the glories of a good laundry detergent and some white flowers. That's about it. AA Musk is basic musk, has no development or discernible dry down, and is cloying. 'Tis a decent musk and cheap, and that's about it.

    20th August, 2009 (Last Edited: 15 November, 2009)

    Ms Rochambeau's avatar

    United States United States

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    Nahéma by Guerlain

    Knowing this was based on rose, I had never intended to try it. However, a fellow Basenoter was generous enough to send me one of those tiny Nahema minis with the blue top. I'm not a fan of florals, especially when it comes to rose scents and I'm also not a fan of fruity florals, of which Nehama is said to be the first. So the mystery to me is why I like this so much when it opens like a big, sparkling, fruity rose. This is a strange scent, so I can't begin to articulate how it unfolds. All I can say is that as the scent quites down there is almost a Caron-like darkness that starts to unfold and begins to nestle the rose inside. At this point it brings to mind Caron's Fleurs de Rocaille, but Nahema has it's own amazing thing going and by the time you get to the gorgeous drydown it's hard to believe that the scent started out the way the way it did. This scent should be experienced even if you are not a fan of florals or fruity-florals in general.

    20th August, 2009

    weylin's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Millésime Impérial by Creed

    Millésime Impérial is an uplifting sour/sweet citrus with a bit of fruity melon. MI smells like sunshine, blue sky and palm trees (figuratively).
    It is very natural (like all Creeds) thus it changes with temperature, humidity and age.
    MI has that beautiful, rich, warm drydown... something the wannabes sorely lack.
    Sillage is pretty weak.
    It lasts for many hours buts stays close to the skin.
    Easily worn by men or women.
    A great summer fragrance!


    20th August, 2009

    bbBD's avatar

    United States United States

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    Rien by Etat Libre d'Orange

    Etat Libre seems to have more leather fragrances than any other house, and each occupies a different niche by presenting leather differently. Rien is the forceful, incense/rubber/smoky side of leather. Sure, there are hints of rose and iris if you pay careful attention - and even a touch of vanilla towards the base. However the general thrust of Rien is that is a very dry, bold and smoky leather.

    Unlike some fragrances that are loaded with strong notes (i.e. the new "Complex" by Boadicea), Rien doesn't become a mess or overbearing. In fact just the opposite: the strong leather notes present a unique and uncompromising leather that is totally wearable and enjoyable. Sillage and longevity are off the charts with Rien. It doesn't F-around.

    A very high recommendation, but be warned Rien isn't for those who don't already have a healthy appreciation for dark, smoky leather fragrances.

    20th August, 2009

    bbBD's avatar

    United States United States

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    Noble by Boadicea the Victorious

    Noble begins with a cheery bergamot note joined by a hint of rose. The hint grows stronger, eventually growing into a rose-dominated rose/bergamot accord. I really like rose fragrances, but there is something that is so sickly sweet about the rose in Noble that I find it very unpleasant. I'm not sure if it's whatever they use to give the rose a 'green' edge, if it's the patchouli coming in too early, or if it's the 'plasticy' synthetic note that Moltening describes in his review, but whatever it is I don't enjoy it. I own tons of rose fragrances. There are honeyed-roses, vanilla-roses, green-roses, etc. Noble is none of these. Based on the notes I would expect this top accord to eventually fade into a rose/vanilla/patchouli a la a fragrance such as Lady Vengence by Juliette Has a Gun, only it never comes. The bergamot/rose just fades out over a 3-4 hours.

    By itself I would give the fragrance a thumbs down. When you consider that 100ml is $450 (?!) this fragrance may represent the most cruel joke in niche perfumery. I mean... you've GOT to be kidding me. Whatever justifies this price I have no idea. I sincerely hope that whoever thinks that they can get away with charging nearly half a grand for a simple rose fragrance that is outshined by countless others at 1/10th the price learns their lesson in some meaningful way that causes them to explicity realize the error of their ways.

    20th August, 2009

    brrrry's avatar

    United States United States

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    Number 3 / Le 3me Homme / The Third Man by Caron

    I didn't like this at first but I eventually came to love it. The opening can sometimes be challenging but it's worth it to get to the elegant drydown. I definitely get the Egoiste references (rose, vanilla) but this isn't quiet as good IMO. An easy thumbs up, none the less.

    20th August, 2009 (Last Edited: 22 November, 2009)

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Poison by Christian Dior

    When Poison was the Diva of the Day I was a about 14- 15 years old- Puff ball skirts were in, the age of Duran Duran , New Age Romantics and The Cure. Just about everything smelt of Poison - this was a coup for Christian Dior. It has not been really successfully copied - it is a classic - love it or hate it. I hated it for many years - the 80s formulation had incredible tenacity and yet women sprayed with abandon . No wonder I refused to use this.
    Now move forward many years and the 80s is a distant memory and Poison is not ubiquitous anymore. I just had a craving for it so I got a bottle and slowly fell in love with it. Sweet and rich - grapes is what I get. Baroque and deep .
    I can say I love Poison now but only a small doses . I beleive it has been reformulated to remove the dagerous phthalates . It is not the really fierce monster perfume I remember - it's better . Poison has mellowed like me.

    20th August, 2009

    AnimaSola's avatar

    United States United States

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    Canoé by Dana

    I had a bottle of Canoe a long time ago, but I don't remember ever wearing it. I remember Canoe as a quiet fragrance at best, mediocre and nondescript at worst. Like a wallflower with a tenuous personality. I think of the dustiest shelf in the dingiest drugstore when I hear the name Canoe. A very sad little scent with hardly any distinction. I have pity for this one. Pardon me, I am about to cry.

    20th August, 2009

    cestrenee's avatar

    United States United States

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    Diorissimo by Christian Dior

    Fleeting isn't even really the word. But I suppose that dreamy illusiveness is part of Diorissimo's appeal. Very beautiful, gentle, lily of the valley perfume. Lovely, airy, naive and 'first bloom,' like a David Hamilton photograph. You really don't want to search for any more depth or hidden meaning, and you can't anyway. You simply must enjoy the filmy, distant sweetness for what it is.

    20th August, 2009

    cestrenee's avatar

    United States United States

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    Black Cashmere by Donna Karan

    I had the chance to try Black Cashmere again a few days ago. Per usual, upon application its rich, sweet, inky dark fragrance enchanted and I was ready for my 'shadowy forest floorbed covered by rain soaked autumnal leaves lit only by the mysterious full moon' Black Mass. But then, per usual, it started to give me a headache. One can't truly enjoy a Black Mass with a migraine. I mean, am I wrong? Black Cashmere is so...THERE...on me. It's there, permeating, seeping, enveloping-but not in a luxurious cloak or sexy embrace way, more like a locked inside a newly varnished cedar wardrobe with no chance of escape way. All that written it's still a gorgeous scent, unfortunately, because I've officially realized I can't do woods (with the exception of CdG Avignon=divinity). For me, woods are the new violets.

    20th August, 2009

    Neurotic Scientist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Oud Wood by Tom Ford

    Oud is Arabic for "wood" but it specifically refers to agarwood, also referred to as aloeswood. Real quality agarwood extracts can cost upwards of $1,000 an ounce and are very difficult to blend, because they have a high terpene content that can very easily come off smelling like turpentine if one is not careful.

    Tom Ford's "Oud," on the other hand, smells very much like Firmenich's synthetic agarwood product ("Oud Blend"), which is almost surely used in this fragrance.

    All in all a very nice fragrance, but probably not worth the price.

    20th August, 2009

    RJR's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tomorrow for Him by Avon

    Spray it on heavy, then keep to your cloying self for an hour. The drydown is worth it. Soft, warm and soothing, though close to the skin. Perfect for snuggling hours after application. Yes, Avon. Who knew?

    20th August, 2009

    MJW77's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Rive Gauche pour Homme by Yves Saint Laurent

    I bought Rive Gauche after all the positive reviews on basenotes. It seemed like it was a must have for any discerning fragrance fan. I don't dislike this fan favourite, but can't help feeling that it's hugely overrated. There is no need for me to mention what it smells like, I'll just give an opinion on what I think of it.
    Basically, when I choose a fragrance to wear it depends on whether its for the day or evening, where I might be going, what I'm wearing etc, but I can never seem to find an occasion for Rive Gauche. I don't have an extensive fragrance wardrobe by any means but I just have many others that I prefer and I that I feel suit me better. I do think RG is for the more mature market and, dare I say it, is rather boring. All the talk of it smelling like shaving foam and barber shops is accurate but if I had a wet shave with foam that smelt like this I would still probably slap on another fragrance over the top of it. I don't dislike RG at all, I think it smells nice enough, I'm just concerned others may think I smell old and when it comes down to choosing a fragrance I rarely reach for the Rive Gauche.

    20th August, 2009

    MJW77's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Beyond Paradise for Men by Estée Lauder

    I originally disliked this fragrance because all I could smell was salt water and quite frankly I was flabbergasted as to how Luca Turin could consider this a masterpiece! Despite my dislike from previous samples I decided to buy a bottle that was on offer just for the hell of it and to give it a real chance. And I'm glad I did. It clicked and I 'got' the fragrance. After a few wearings now I still get the salt water aspect but only a hint of it, merged with exotic tropical accords and primarily a melon note.
    Beyond Paradise has definitely leaped up my fragrance hierarchy as I find it very wearable and seems to fit with my personality and style. I would probably never wear this in the evening as I have many other great evening fragrances but I do love wearing this in the day. I really enjoy BP and have tested it against both Vetiver and Rive Gauche and have found that BP won hands down. The fresh tropical sexiness of BP made both Vetiver and Rive Gauche smell rather stuffy and old.
    I do wonder if Beyond Paradise is too youthful a fragrance for many basenoters which is why the reviews haven't been particularly positive. I also believe it has suffered due to it's 5 Star rating from Luca Turin. I still don't agree with this but I can definitely now appreciate where he's coming from. All in all a great fragrance!

    20th August, 2009

    ChrisJPN's avatar

    Japan Japan

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    Comme des Garçons 2 by Comme des Garçons

    I find this to be almost intoxicating. I'm actually surprised by how much I like it given that 2 Man was simply "good" for me. This is far superior, much more interesting. The ink note is beautiful. I agree that, on first impression, it's probably more of a feminine scent but there's something different about it that makes it perfectly unisex After Sequoia this is my favourite CdG perfume. Dark, sensual and, overall, wonderful.

    20th August, 2009

    A-Rod's avatar

    New Zealand New Zealand

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    Unforgivable by Sean John

    Im not really sold on this...My mates love it and keep buying it - but I donno.. I will say that it lasts for the whole day when you put it on, but the scent isn't great to start with so.

    20th August, 2009

    byblos808's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Chanel Pour Monsieur by Chanel

    it's a lovely, friendly though assured and confident scent that does not shout its masculinity with the harsh soapy, barbershop or urinous notes that show up in some of its peers. in fact there are no sharp notes at all, and there is even a distant floral chord. very much ahead of its time, and really good.

    20th August, 2009

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Polo Black by Ralph Lauren

    Ever since I tried the original Polo, I've been a fan of Ralph Lauren. I even finished two bottles of Polo Sport! So it was with high hopes that I sampled Polo Black, yet another best seller from this great house. Like many other 'unenlightened' customer I was hooked by the 'amazing' top notes and promptly made my full bottle purchase within 5 minutes of smelling it. How bad can it be? It's a Polo from Ralph Lauren! As I discovered later the development to the drydown leaves much to be desired; I can't even remember the last time I felt like wearing Polo Black. Now whenever I open the drawer to pick a scent, the still-heavy 4.2oz bottle serves me yet another reminder of those 'dark' days before joining Basenotes.

    20th August, 2009 (Last Edited: 08 September, 2009)

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