Fragrance Reviews from September 2009

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    warlandsboy's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    L'Homme by Yves Saint Laurent

    A rather pleasent, inoffensive scent which has a refreshing opening but settles down into a slightly sweet yet subtle aroma. Could be used as an decent body spray, but I don't see it as being all that powerful. As others have said there's nothing wrong with it, which is where the problem lies. May be a crowd pleaser, but I was hoping for a little more...

    05 September, 2009

    SillageMonger's avatar

    United States United States

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    Salvador Dali pour Homme by Salvador Dali

    I am very pleased to have this wonderful fragrance in my collection! Salvador Dali Pour Homme is without a doubt a fragrance for special occasions. It is also wearable for most evening outings, if applied in moderation (a maximum of 2 sprays would be the recommended dosage). This is quite possibly the darkest selection in my collection, and while I would not hesitate to wear it for most evening outings (it is a bit too heavy for hot summer usage), it is most likely not an office or casual daily usage scent. It is a difficult to describe fragrance, and while heavy and most certainly a dark fragrance, most of the aforementioned satanic cult references can be readily dismissed. I would describe Salvador Dali Pour Homme as a very unique, heavy oriental fragrance with strong sillage and excellent longeivity, which is very wearable for most occasions when applied with judiciously. The bottle is also primo and in true Dali form!

    05 September, 2009

    knit at nite's avatar

    United States United States

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    Amarige by Givenchy

    Took a short cruise a few years ago and forgot to bring perfume. Bought this scent in their gift shop and immediately received questions from men as to "what scent was I wearing; I want some for my girlfriend". For me, it's definately an evening fragrance and a little goes a very long way, which I like.

    05 September, 2009

    knit at nite's avatar

    United States United States

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    Amarige Mariage by Givenchy

    Took a chance and bought this (untried) for $20 at TJ Maxx. No buyers remorse at all. It's not a fragrance renders me speechless and transported to another world (my holy grail standard). But it is the first Givenchy scent I would prefer to wear in the daytime.

    05 September, 2009

    Lovely Rump's avatar

    United States United States

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    He Wood by Dsquared2

    An exceptional fragrance in that it embodies "awful" with such brilliant efficiency. Unlike so many other awfuls, it finds it's nadir with a quick slam dunk of stupidity. In the same way as these anemic dumb-dumb designer brothers (who look like the sons of David Byrne and Norman Bates) design clothes that look like store fixtures from "Nike's Discount of Mongolia," this pea-brained diluted conception of a fragrance belongs in the bargain basket of Home Depot. It has the depth, sillage, and dimension of 1 hollow molecule of synthetic cedar floating on a stream of "urinol camphor puck." Awful, cheap, degrading, depressing, and everything bad about art and mass marketing in this insulting empty, overpriced (it's at Barney's) bottle of garbage. But I'm sure I'm understating.

    05 September, 2009

    peterr's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Obsession by Calvin Klein

    Vile.

    An admittedly personal reaction balanced by the 1980s mass enthusiasm among people other than me.

    Along with Poison it defined for me the 80s oriental floral obsession (cue the Human League's "Don't you want me").

    One of the three or four scent that actually gives me a headache. This scent has been disincentive enough to have caused me to forake the sexual attentions of nubile young women

    I understand that the many love it, I am not among them

    05 September, 2009

    peterr's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    4711 Echt Kölnisch Wasser by 4711

    As per another reviewer, this is my mother's favourite. It is not an overpowering scent and evaporates quickly with the top and mid notes following the alcohol into the ether. This would leave only base, but the 4711 base is very thin to begin with.

    Overall a somewhat medicinal effect, perhaps unsurprising given the origins. More on the refreshing side than the intense side, I cannot see it being anyone's signature scent but it is a bracing cooling summer splash and best regarded in that context.

    05 September, 2009

    peterr's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Calvin by Calvin Klein

    My signature scent almost immediately upon its issue in the early 1980s. I never really thought about wearing cologne until I tried Calvin.

    The 1999 reissue was not quite the same but since you can still find bottles of it here and there it will have to do. Anyone sampling the currently available product missed a treat.

    Calvin had a phenomenal balance of citrus, floral and woody notes. I always found that the floral mid notes faded fastest drying out within a couple of hours. The lemon top notes lasted longer and the base mellowed but persisted.

    The reissue seems much lighter on the citrus and overall less persistent. Seems spicier too.

    Exertion immediately after application did not bring out the best in Calvin but a little heat later in the day revivified.

    "Soapy" as a parfumier of my acquaintance stated when I recalled my love of Calvin. Not my first choice of words but undeniably a clean fresh scent.

    I have never found an adequate substitute, and the subsequent trends of orientals, musks, marines and sweetness have nt favoured my taste. Byblos was in the same range, but nowhere near the balance and elegance.

    Most disappointing is that none of the scents from the house have lived up. IN2U is the ,ost recent one to tempt me with an initial flash that did not stand the test of time.

    Nothing comes between me and my Calvin after all.





    05 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Ubar Woman by Amouage

    As you expect with Amouage, it's a big, well-crafted, head-turning fragrance. It starts out very much like Theo Fennell's Scent - a warm, slightly powdery, musky rose - and then it just takes off in flight and gets bigger, and bigger, and louder!, until I had a throbbing, spicy, rose oriental on my arm (and inside of coat, for days afterwards), which reminded me of the old Montana Parfum de Peau. Now I've got some of that stashed in the back of my closet and had thought it was waaaay too 80s to wear today, but if this kind of thing is coming back, I'll save myself some money and dig that out. But if that is your kind of thing, you're going to be ever-so-happy with Ubar, and you just can't beat the Amouage-s for quality and staying power.

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Samsara by Guerlain

    I read something recently which finally put Samsara into context for me. I have had a love/hate relationship with it, which I think centres around the powder. I do like powdery fragrances, but here it seems out of place. I'll happily be wearing a rich sweet oriental when this huge *poof* of powder erupts.

    Anyway, I came across an interview with Robert Granai, the bottle designer, talking about the inspiration for it, and he said "we found [this] not in the Souk market, but in the Musée Guimet." Aha! More of an Orientalist fragrance than an Oriental. And there I had it. As we also know, Jean-Paul Guerlain created this for a particular woman. I have seen her, and I know her kind.

    Some years ago I worked at a major museum where we would have big galas, and most of the ladies who attended were very wealthy and of a certain age. They all had near-identical ash blonde heavily highlighted, big, highly coiffed, hair. A hair helmet really. We took to calling this "international hair," which carried with it a whole host of associations.

    And so I have come to the conclusion that Samsara is the oriental for women with international hair. It is well-mannered. And lest that indolic jasmine or sultry sandalwood should offend, there is a massive overlay of orris to keep it all in place, just as a robust application of Elnett will do for your coiffure.

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Allure Homme Sport by Chanel

    Hmm. I am a woman and do not find it enticing. In fact, I have never before found a fragrance so repellent. My husband tried this a few times and it bunged up my nose every time, and I wound up with a sinus infection after its last outing. I literally have tried thousands of fragrances and have never had this reaction before.

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Acqua di Parma Profumo by Acqua di Parma

    This is a review for the reformulation which was done in 2008 by Nathalie Lorson. This new version is like Rochas Femme having undergone the same treatment as, say, Diorella did in Amouage's Jubi 25. It smells like a Roudnitska classic but reinterpreted for Cleopatra. It's got that whole ancient vibe about it that you still get in attars from the Mid-East (am thinking in particular of Amouage Ohood), but it's lightened up so that the fragrance breathes. Mature, feminine, classic.

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Belle en Rykiel by Sonia Rykiel

    Hmm. Wavering there between a neutral and a thumbs up. I have wanted to try this one for a long time because of the Frankincense note (I love Frankincense; burn it a lot) and descriptions as an unusual oriental. I finally found a bottle cheap so picked it up. It's pleasant, pretty, and I like the lavender it in, quite a bit, but I'm not bowled over by it, and while I can pick out the frankincense mingled with the lavender if I try, it's not the star of the show. My first impression was that it smells Italian, and then specifically it reminded me of Laura Biagiotti's Roma, I think because it's sweet and slightly powdery, but it's a damp sweet powder not the dry sort, if that makes sense. It isn't Guerlain-aldehydic-1960s-powder, it's a recent shimmering liquid to powder body spray - not unlike what you get in L'Instant in the pure perfume. And speaking of Guerlain, if I want lavender I'll reach for this, not Jicky, which is just not so pretty, especially with that monster civet note, and this is much prettier than Vero's Kiki, which was very barber-shop and made me feel physically ill (nice job for a fragrance touting its aromatherapy credentials). So, I guess I'm agreeing with what I originally read about it - pretty oriental with frankincense and nice lavender note. Still meh, although I will wear it on occasion.

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Scent by Theo Fennell

    Voluptuous is definitely the right word for this one. Smells the way a powdered bosom should!

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Jubilation 25 by Amouage

    Smelling Jubilation 25 for the first time was like running into an old friend... or perhaps more like thinking you've spotted an old friend in a crowd, but then realising it's someone you've never met before. It's somehow recognisable and familiar, I think because it has a classical chypre structure - more Mitsouko than Diorella to me - but as one wears it, it definitely has a hint of the oriental about it - some spice and vanilla. In fact, I get a hint of Opium parfum, which I think is mainly from the carnation. I haven't seen this mentioned in lists of notes, but there's eugenol on the box, so there's definitely a clove/carnation accord. This fragrance communicates classic and impeccable taste, and then it flashes a bit of something sexy. It seems to work for all occasions, and it's one of the few fragrances I wear that always seems to draw compliments.

    06 September, 2009

    angelica's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Jarling by JAR

    This is like En Passant moved to Soho in London. I worked there, in an office I hasten to add!, some years ago, and initially was shocked to find that on my short walk round the block to grab a coffee, I would pass, um what's the polite term for them? - ladies of the night? - except this was at noon on a Monday, and they would be hanging out of their doorways, with a lot hanging out, right across from a children's school! - and playground. If you know London well, you know where this juxtaposition occurs. I'm not making it up. Kids running around playing, with these women advertising their wares right next door in broad daylight. Wow. So, Jarling take the lilac caught on the run theme, and repositions it to this sort of environment. It's quite decadent, with the neon-flashing lights of some other big white florals - lily, jasmine, tuberose; quite sweet, with that heliotrope and vanilla; and there's something very naughty lurking in there - like PVC covered in talcum powder. I really like it.

    06 September, 2009

    Dry_Martini's avatar

    Spain Spain

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    1445 by Castle Forbes

    A refined Polo Crest,wonderful green

    06 September, 2009

    Naitch's avatar

    United States United States

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    Égoïste / L'Égoïste by Chanel

    This is one hell of a powerful cologne that really makes a statement when you wear it. A basenoter called it a "masterful powerbomb" which would be accurate. I'd describe it as very, very intense with excellent sillage and longevity. It has so many different layers and notes it keeps you guessing as to what you're smelling. One minute you might think it's a strong lemon cleaner, the next a very soft vanilla candy with a hint of roses. It projects quite a bit. One evening I wore this and sat near a fan outside at a restaurant. My nose couldn't figure out one minute to the next what I was smelling, which has never happened to me before. This is definately for the confident man with an ego and ladies notice when you wear it (in a positive way). If you don't like attention I'd go with Platinum Egoiste, which smells great also but is for people who play it safe. Easily the top of the class when it comes to the fragrances I own.

    Be extremely careful when you spray this on! No more than 3 sprays on exposed skin, or 2 under the shirt and 2 outside on the wrist. After several hours you can spray 2 more. I would never spray behind the ears or the neck or your nose will be overwhelmed.

    Use on weekends, special occassions or evenings. Lasts about 6 to 8 hours on my skin.

    06 September, 2009

    Wordbird's avatar

    Wales Wales

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    Arpège pour Homme by Lanvin

    Yes it's sweet. But that should just encourage us ladies to give this one a try. I think it's a very nice woody fragrance with a bright and sweet top that isn't too much (this is not L de Lolita Lempicka or Aquolina Pink Sugar). There is a watery accord in the top notes that some might find offputting, but this sees to pass off completely to let the woods shine out. And there's none of that 'aftershave accord' that haunts so many masculine frags and puts me off wearing them in public.

    I think this is a very nice woody feminine. I like it better on me than the women's version of Arpege.

    06 September, 2009

    Stereotomy's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Kenzo Power by Kenzo

    Clubbing scent, just like JPG Le Male. Synthetic floral/white musk, very aromatic, chick magnet. Boc boc boc.

    06 September, 2009

    Sugandaraja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Aria di Capri by Carthusia

    Bay leaf and tarragon added to powdery, soapy parsnips with a sweet citrus edge? Run away! Run away! None of the notes themselves are offensive, but it's an olfactory orgy of what doesn't belong together.

    To give them their due for originality, I have never smelled anything else like this, and thankfully so. It's a true scrubber.

    06 September, 2009

    Sugandaraja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Moss Breches by Tom Ford

    The top notes have the most personality in this fragrance. There's a distinct dried-herb accord; a touch of the garrigue, and then an upwelling of sweetness. This warm, sweet honeycomb note gives Moss Breches a sore-throat lozenge feel.

    The balance is brief, however, and quickly the herbs and honey vanish, leaving a pleasant and unassuming vanillic amber with a mossy touch.

    It's nice, but it doesn't motivate me to restock in either bottle or decant form once my sample runs out.

    06 September, 2009

    Sugandaraja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Iris Pallida 2007 by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    The top notes are somewhat akin to the legendary Iris Silver Mist, the combination of carrot and iris being used again here, together with a large dollop of anise, but the spicy, earthy, rooty qualities found in ISM are absent, leaving Iris Pallida feeling rather reserved, and in a sense, "paler". The anise is strong and absinthesque, totally removed from any licorice-candy associations. In the drydown, Iris Pallida becomes very soapy, almost unpleasantly so, given the bone-dry backdrop of an increasingly woody iris, cedar, and anise.

    Pay no attention to the "feminine" designation if you're worried about this being too sweet or floral - it couldn't be further away. This is a very dry, clean, almost ascetic iris, stripped of all opulence.

    06 September, 2009

    bluelit8's avatar

    United States United States

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    Dune by Christian Dior

    Dune is a lovely, fresh oriental fragrance. I can understand why some people find it overwhelming, as this is a fragrance that really must be applied with a light touch (one to two sprays really ought to do it). It is perfectly unisex. It begins with delightful anisic notes before moderating to a darker, duskier phase, but it never becomes either heavy or "ambery" in the traditional sense of the word.

    It also demonstrates what in my opinion is the correct approach to the use of "aquatic" materials -- not the focus of the fragrance but a nuance that allows a salty, fresh burst to float up from the skin from time to time. Dune is one of the few orientals that are appropriate for summer evenings. A winner all around.

    06 September, 2009

    schumi's avatar

    Romania Romania

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    Melograno by Santa Maria Novella

    For so many years I have tried to imagine what a perfect fragrance would smell like. Hundreds of scents have stroked my nose, some of them were gentle and smooth, others were rough and sharp. Some were classic, other were odd and innovative. From florals to fougeres, from citruses to orientals, all of them had something to offer, but none of them had everything to offer.

    I have now found an almost perfect fragrance... Melograno. This has one of the most divine mixes of lush flowers and fruits, with slightly smoky undertones (in my opinion, not the best choice to yoke with the floral/fruity character of the fragrance) perceivable throughout the entire development of the fragrance. The typical SMN odd, harsh notes, combined with a clean barbershop note, could label this fragrance as an "original classic". There are very few fragrances that can claim that label, and even fewer produce such a contradictory, but absolutely wonderful effect.

    Melograno is not just to be worn, but to be enjoyed, savoured from the first strong, bold opening notes, through the intoxicating fruity-floral mid notes, ending up with the smooth and sophisticated dry-down.

    06 September, 2009

    derekp's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    English Fern by Penhaligon's

    Found this one somewhat soapy, with a sweet woody base. Mildly reminds me of sunscreen at first, until that sweetness kicks in. Nice, but not my style.

    06 September, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    1872 for Men by Clive Christian

    I little peppery (very airy) a little orangey and a touch green. I don't understand the cost rationale behind this one. Nice blend and all but it's not something you'd save up to buy.

    06 September, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Avon Musk for Men by Avon

    Musk? Yes. Oddly foresty and pineconey. Other than that, rather ok. Decent musk.

    06 September, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    X for Men by Clive Christian

    Thick and rich spices and very oily. Kinda reminds me of a Christmas store as it's a little piney with cinnamon. This smells a lot like a Avon product I tried recently so I wonder about the cost.

    06 September, 2009

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Triumph by Avon

    A failed attempt at a Cool Water clone. Triumph starts off with that classic watery fougere but has way too unbalance lavender notes to make it a good clone or even a good fougere. It's also a lot cleaner and woodier but after all that, it's still a bad execution of a decent fragrance.

    06 September, 2009

    Showing 241 to 270 of 1282.