Fragrance Reviews from December 2010

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    jtd's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ivoire (original) by Pierre Balmain

    Soapy floral from 1980. Soapy was probably a hard sell in 1980, so how on earth has this survived the intervening years? I suppose that being out of fashion could actually make it more likely that you’d survive the trends of the day. Also being inexpensive must help. Well, however it worked out, I’m glad Ivoire is still with us.

    This really does smell like soap. It’s a green/white floral collage with aldehydes and galbanum up front and a creamy woody drydown. But the middle notes, which last forever and meld into the drydown are the most appealing. The aldehydes have burned off, and the sour/soap vibe simmers down. What comes to the front is a carnation that adds a peppery sharpness and a clovelike coolness. Is there oakmoss in this one? It seems to have a mossy tone as time passes, but it doesn’t really read as a chypre. Current florals don’t seem to venture into this direction, so Ivoire continues to remain above trends, and holds its own turf. Let’s hope its difference guarantees its continued production.

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 11th December, 2010)

    Euphoria's avatar



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    Lolita Lempicka Au Masculin by Lolita Lempicka

    Overwhelming, dreamy liqorice and anise. Strong and sweet at first, dries down to be one of the best drydowns i've encountered, projects well, only downside is... well, nothing.
    And also; THIS. IS. NOT. UNISEX. I know girls would like to wear this but don't. It's a tad too masculine.

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 22 December, 2010)

    Euphoria's avatar



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    1 Million by Paco Rabanne

    Master of projection and longevity, 1 million starts out candy-like sweet with a semi-fruit vibe of grapefruit and hints of mint (you don't get alot of mint here, sorry mint lovers), dries down to be as sweet or sweeter.
    The grapefruit gets replaced by loads of cinnamon (luckily, i love cinnamon) and rose, so slightly floral. And then it's like that for the remaining hours (longevity is 12 + hours and projection is insane).

    Synthetic? Yes.
    Projection monster? Yes.
    Popular? Yes.

    Do i like it? Yes.


    EDIT: I still wear this fragrance, but when i realized how popular it is i stopped wearing it, sigh..

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 04 January, 2011)

    iodine's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Let Me Play The Lion by LesNez

    I must admit I was caught by the name! I imagined a perfume that would have suited someone who sometimes asks their fellows to believe they can be roaring, daring, wild, even cruel like a lion, but everybody knows that they’re much more akin to a big, lazy cat dozing off on the sofa… The actual perfume didn’t disappoint my expectations: it definitely is a funny and playful fragrance, pretending to be serious, and a bit scary at the beginning, only to evolve into a very reassuring and woody warm skin scent.
    It starts with pungent seeds and spices- aniseed, a faintly sweaty cumin, black pepper that give vigorous support to a spiky, stern cedar. Then, a deliciously bitter and slightly fizzy, medicinal note that I ascribe to myrrh, and a fleeting but powerful burning encense emerge, giving air and light to the fragrance. In the drydown, the woods placidly hold the scene: a by now tamed, dry cedar and a powdery, sawdusty sandalwood, softened and smoothed by the sweet facets of the spices. The fragrance has quite a good longevity on skin and affinity with fabrics, to make you feel envelopped in a dry, dusty golden cloud, like a plush lion’s mane.

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 15 February, 2011)

    PerfumeCollector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Blue Sugar by Aquolina

    Make no mistake about it, this perfume is all Cotton Candy, meaning Caramelized sugar and Vanilla, but is a NATURAL sugar and vanilla, not the synthetic, artificial and obnoxious burnt sugar and vanilla of A*Men.
    Those two notes strongly dominate the whole spectrum, I could not detect any citrics(neither bergamot nor mandarin orange) in the opening, but the strong coriander (cilantro) counterbalances very nicely the sweetnes of the dominant opening notes. At the heart, the caramelised sugar turns a bit into strawberry jam while licorice makes a strong entrance, and again, it is a NATURAL licorice, not the artificial licorice of many other fragrances, the patchouli stays in the background and it is very nice, in my opinion, the best patchouli ever.
    The drydown is lovely, powdery, but timidly so, the cedar makes it very masculine , but the vanilla and caramelized sugar hover over it in a very pleasant fashion and star anise replaces the licorice.
    The most important thing of them all, my wife LOVES it, she goes crazy when I wear it, and that makes up for any defect that I did not find.
    It is innovative, different, audacious, bold, and I LOVE IT
    And it costs almost nothing!!!!!!

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 14 March, 2011)

    Parallel Bisector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Escape for Men by Calvin Klein

    This is a guilty pleasure of mine and I'm a sucker for the grapefruit/bergamot blend, everyone commented that they hated it when I used to wear it, so now I only wear it on days I'm stuck at home doing homework all day. I can't be the only person who loves this stuff, but since most people don't like it I wouldn't recommend buying it.

    Its a very simple smelling scent thats pretty linear and synthetic. I get about 3-4 hours with it on my skin.

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 04 April, 2011)

    Parallel Bisector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Halston Z-14 by Halston

    This is a love/hate kind of frag. For me its a love all the way because my favorite smell combination in the world is fresh cut wood and Coca Cola. That's exactly what I smell in Z-14, its a rugged, outdoorsy, Paul Bunyan kind of scent. Though it is extremely cheap it has the presence of the more expensive frags but if this sounds like something you might enjoy I still recommend getting your nose on it first before you buy.

    The only downside to this frag that I can think of is that the Coca Cola smell I talked about, well its smells like the coke is flat, don't know how to explain it better than that.

    1 spray across the middle of the neck to cover both pulse points is plenty, no need to add additional sprays to the chest or wrists. It projects very well for the first hour or so then drys to a medium short range. If you are going to wear it in a small environment like class or the office I recommend spraying this on an hour before you leave to give it time to dry down a bit.

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 04 April, 2011)

    RicardVonLowen's avatar

    United States United States

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    New York by Nicolaï

    A sweeter, incensy version of my signature fragrance, Eau Sauvage. New York is a very original fragrance, don't get me wrong. It is loud, however, in a brash sort of way. Excellent longevity, but not much in the way of complexity. I find it linear. Kudos to Patricia de Nicolai for a wonderful, delicious fragrance. For me however, too much of two different things. If I want incensy and exotic I will stick to Timbuktu, which does it a bit better. If I want the citrus accords, I will go to my Eau Sauvage or perhaps Armani or Eau d'Orange Verte.

    01st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 18 September, 2011)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    Wall Street by Bond No. 9


    Another clone by Bond No. 9…it is an antiseptically clean Erolfa. Crystal clear notes, every possible disagreeable thing removed, no rough edges, all spit and polish. It’s nice, it’s very nice. The cucumber note is pretty obvious, plus, it’s attractive and clean. The whole scent contains loads of balanced and refined ozonics. The scent has great longevity. I am with those who say they would buy it if its cost were one-third the price. But even then, I’d rather buy Erolfa, because Erolfa has more character—or should I say, Erolfa has character—Wall Street has cleanliness. Wall Street—very clean and sanitary, making it quite inappropriately named.

    No other brand invites as many comparisons as Bond No. 9 brands. That’s what happens, I guess, when just about everything the company produces is more or less a copy of successful fragrances from other companies. Although the ingredients are of high quality and the blending is accomplished with aplomb, the fact remains that Bond No. 9 does not have to invest in marketing research, the employment of creative experts, or long periods of focus group testing. So why are they so expensive?


    02 December, 2010

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    24, Faubourg by Hermès


    I have pretty much the same interpretation of 24 Faubourg that most of the reviewers do: This is a fragrance with such a strong presence that it belies its 1995 introduction—it is much too…TOO…for 1995. It is classic in notes and structure and that would place it in the pre-1990 designer category. And it certainly does seem Oriental in nature: It is strong and sweet and ambery. I think that it is excellently refined and proportioned except that the opening peach note is too strong…too dominant for me—not my favorite note. Except for that peach note 24, Faubourg flows beautifully and classically, necessarily imparting a strong element of character in its delivery. Shrinking violet types need not apply; it takes a woman of sterling carriage and presence to pull off 24. Not for everyone, but it is guaranteed to be spectacular on the right woman. I do think this fragrance is typical of Hermès’ pre-Jean-Claude Ellena presentations: elegance, sophistication, and quality. I like fragrances like this much better than several of the post J-CE offerings.
    Originally posted 24 May 2007,

    02 December, 2010

    nsamadi's avatar



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    Virgin Island Water by Creed

    Very pleasant scent. As many have mentioned, it smells like an expensive coconut suntan lotion, with a brisk opening of limes.

    Unfortunately, it falls in that gimmicky/novelty category. I can't imagine finding a situation where I would wear this, unless I lived in the Bahamas year round. It smells like you just got off the beach.

    02 December, 2010

    Mario-K's avatar

    Poland Poland

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    Terre d'Hermès by Hermès

    King of all men's scents. Everything perfect. I can't imagine anything better than Terre D'Hermes.

    02 December, 2010

    jmcgonigal's avatar

    United States United States

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    Burberry London for Men by Burberry

    Burberry London is a simple square bottle with a plaid “cover” on it. It’s a different design, and fits into the Burberry line. Overall this is a great mature scent with a ton of spice throughout the fragrance. It starts out with a lavender/bergamot opening. This goes away rather quickly and the rest of the scent is spicy note. The cinnamon note really comes out and mixes slightly with a note of leather and port wine. It overall has a classic winter/holiday scent to it. For me it takes me directly to Christmas, snow, fresh cut Christmas trees etc. Burberry London screams festive!

    The issue that I had with this fragrance is that it just wasn’t consistent. Some days it lasted 2 hours and then it was just totally gone. The next day it would last 6-8 hours with really no reason at all. The projection on this for the first few hours was great, and then after the initial drydown (2-4 hours) it gets close to the skin. For me Burberry London is a perfect evening wear scent, but I could see it being worn during a winter day. I think this is the perfect fragrance for those December activities either in or outdoors. This is a spicy fragrance, and I’d mainly suggest it to the 20+ crowd. I think it’s perfect for 25+ but it can be pulled off by younger folks. Again I see this as a date/evening fragrance. I wouldn’t use this at a party, but more an intimidate setting.

    BURBERRY LONDON = TRY

    If you’re looking for a fragrance to be worn in December, then this is perfect. It really depends on your motives. If you’re a one/two bottle of cologne type of person, then I’d say just get a sample of this. It simply isn’t versatile enough to be purchased for those folks. However, if you’re a person that has 5+ bottles for different occasions, then I think this is a buy. It just can’t be beat for the winter evenings and in those intimate settings.
    Scent strength: moderate
    Recommended age: mature
    Scent life: 2-10 hours
    Recommended use: casual/evening
    Classification: oriental/spicy
    Price: $$

    <a href="http://www.thecolognereview.com/">Cologne Review</a>

    02 December, 2010

    nsamadi's avatar



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    Soir d'Orient by Maître Parfumeur et Gantier

    Stunning fragrance, probably one of the best perfumes produced. It smells of leather, amber and the most exquisite aoud I've smelt. It makes the aoud scents by Amouage and Montale smell like Wal-Mart knock-offs.

    I try to use only one spray or a drop when I wear it. I did the mistake of liberally spraying it the first time I wore it and it's such a heavy and rich scent it comes off cloying.

    It's one of the most opulent scents I've come across. I rarely wear it but when I do, it's for a formal occasion when I'm wearing a tuxedo.



    02 December, 2010

    philmcphe's avatar

    United States United States

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    Baie Rose 26 by Le Labo

    Tried this for the first time today. All I have to say is damn you Le Labo, damn you for making such a gorgeous fragrance exclusive and extremely expensive. The only city exclusive to date that I would spend the money on ($400)

    02 December, 2010

    nsamadi's avatar



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    Poivre 23 by Le Labo

    It's the only city exclusive for Le Labo that I think is worthy of the hefty price tag.

    The scent itself is a combination of various scents I've tried before. There's at least three or four themes present. It's cedar woody in a pencil shaving way, very much like Gucci Pour Homme, the Tom Ford creation. Peppery in a Piper Nigrum way. Sweet vanilla in a Serge Lutens way. And there's this really weird oily olive note in the top that disappears quickly. So, oily, sweet, peppery, and woody.

    Very complex and interesting, gives off the color brown. It's a heavier fragrance that's best worn in the Fall and Winter.

    02 December, 2010

    yoyo's avatar



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    L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme by Guerlain

    At first I hated it because it smells very sweet and I was looking for something clean and fresh such as azzaro visit. Few months ago I gave it another try, this time it smells like heaven!! I detect the citrus/chocolate opening. Then it dries down to a more masculine and mature scent. Moreover it lasts for more than 10 hours on me. The best scent for winter that I've tried so far.

    02 December, 2010

    yoyo's avatar



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    Original Vetiver by Creed

    At first it smells like bug spray for a good one hour. Then it dries down to a clean, inscensy and floral scent. I've never been complimented on it but I just feel good wearing it. Longivity is ok on my skin, I get about 6 hours. Suitable for spring or summer.

    02 December, 2010

    yoyo's avatar



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    Vetiver by Guerlain

    My best blind buy ever. It opens up with a baby powder smell, which some people might associate with fecal smell. But after 2-3 hours it dries down to a mature and clean vetiver scent. If you like the dry-down but can't stand the baby powder smell, then you should try Original Vetiver by Creed, which opens with bug spray smell instead, but takes shorter time to develop into the beautiful vetiver scent. Guerlain Vetiver lasts all day long on my skin, no complaint on longevity.

    02 December, 2010

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lauder for Men by Estée Lauder

    Lauder for Men is an excellent aromatic scent for men. It is classified as a fougere, but I don't really smell the fougere accord at all. It's more like a masculine floral with a large aromatic element. The opening is a sumptuous aromatic bouquet of green aldehydes, juniper and a gorgeous tagettes note along with some excellent aromatic herbs and galbanum. The floral center is rather cool and has much in common with the florals in Aramis 700. These are very stately and elegant florals which never lean too far into the feminine territory. It is extremely usable for men who shy away from floral scents due to the large aromatic element. The base comes through the florals; even though there is amber and vanilla, this is not a sweet or amberic base at all. It is rather dry and woody and the amber and vanilla exist to help the scent from going too bone dry. The ultimate dry down ends up finally after many hours of longevity as a clean musk skin scent. Overall, Estee Lauder for Men is an elegant, versatile and easy to wear scent that smells like it belongs in the Aramis Gentleman's collection. Very nice.

    02 December, 2010

    nsamadi's avatar



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    Acier Aluminium by Creed

    This is probably the most interesting and edgy scent in the Creed line, which tends to put out safe scents. It feels like cold metal and blood.

    I find it interesting but it does have a 70-80's cologne vibe about it that rubs me the wrong way. That urinal cake smell you get out of Kouros.

    02 December, 2010

    roteus's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Frapin 1270 by Frapin

    When you apply it on your skin seems to have a full bottle of their cognac on you!
    Some sort of old spiced well-aged "passito" wine.
    All different facets of a complicated bi-distelled spirit with dries fruits notes (apricot-prunes), resins aspect, dates undertones are clears:
    to me seems an Italian Panettone cooked in a wood-oven with a hint of vanilla!
    The evolution is quiet calm and complicated: it dries down into a powdery oriental;
    light ambery, hints of coffee and cacao and toasted hazelnuts.
    It's better than what I expected and there is some woody-leather (IBQ) side I like in it.

    The opening is pleasant and perfectly fit in the gourmand family.
    This product is not bad at all and it's very well balanced as I aspected from a cognac house: the material are well chosen, the blending is carefully calibrated!
    I bet they refined the perfume in small wood-barriques.

    02 December, 2010

    rickbr's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    Bois Rouge by Tom Ford

    Bois Rouge surprised me as an unusual leather fragrance on my skin. It`s interesting that it doesn`t seeem to be a dominant note from the reviews i read, but on me the leather is the key aroma. It`s a dry leather with a suede touch, something like a new leather jacket aroma, but less dry. I get a fast citrusy opening, followed by a metallic flowerish aroma, and then what dominates on me is a dry, ambered, woody leather. It`s not a strong one, it haves a light projection and sillage, but a fair longevity on my skin. Sounds elegant, and it`s one of my favorite citric leathers at this time.

    02 December, 2010

    Mario-K's avatar

    Poland Poland

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    Dirty English by Juicy Couture

    The name and the bottle interested me first. I thought, it's like a joke, and it was. It's like ironic version of Gucci PH, which is very oldated for me. Dirty English is much, much better for me. Not such strong as Gucci, but more interesting. Dirty English is like a Frank Sinatra in old, black biker leather jacket. Lasts about 6-8 hours on me.

    02 December, 2010

    Diorissimo's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cardinal by Heeley

    Ecclesiastical but easier to wear for me than Avignon...the notes soften nicely but retain that churchy scent without the gloom.

    02 December, 2010

    CoL's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Deseo by Jennifer Lopez

    This is lovely stuff. A nice subtle tropical fruity type scent. Rather unisex but I say that about most fragrances as I really don't care what lable the marketers put on it. Citrus followed by a tropical fruit accord with a tiny touch of coconut. Really lovely and mega cheap now! The bottle is so tacky it's cool!

    02 December, 2010

    suburbanites's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tobacco Vanille by Tom Ford

    I've really struggled with this scent, having given it several samplings and all-day wearings to render a decision. There are times when I've been indifferent to the aroma, and others when it's really been terribly disappointing. Foremost, if your expectation is a warm tobacco aroma, it will be difficult to distinguish from the very overpowering influence of vanilla from top to base. This is not a subtle vanilla by any means, but a very cloying, confectionary vanilla that has exceptional longevity and dominates the fragrance. It is very linear, barely transforming over the course of hours, mild sillage but exceptional longevity. It would appear that the intent of the fragrance was to evoke a memory of scented pipe tobacco. Unfortunately, it evoked food to me and anyone around me who could smell it -- "cookies" was one word used to describe it, "cheap vanilla extract" another. Not what I wanted having really desired something closer to Creed Vintage Tabarome's very mellowed tobacco. There are a number of Tom Ford Private Collection fragrances that I enjoy, but this is one that I certainly wouldn't recommend both on price and its aromatic composition. This missed the mark for me.

    02 December, 2010

    ArataCPA's avatar

    United States United States

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    Reaction Women by Kenneth Cole

    I'm surprised to read all of the negative reviews! I can't absolutely say I am in love with this fragrance, but it is a nice, fresh floral good for everyday use. I have received many compliments since I have been wearing it. I've been wearing it in winter, but I think I will save it for a spring/summer fragrance.

    02 December, 2010

    tomy91's avatar

    Latvia Latvia

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    Black XS by Paco Rabanne

    Awesome sexy fragrance! It's quite spicy but I like that. I can agree with the comments that it smells like "radioactive strawberries" - but that's the nicest part of all. Generally Black XS is really a "black" perfume for nightclubs. Pretty nice longevity, I can even smell it on my clothes on the next day also on skin it's not so bad. Great fragrance for 20-25 year old independent men who enjoys his life. :)

    02 December, 2010

    tomy91's avatar

    Latvia Latvia

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    Cool Water Game by Davidoff

    100% summer scent! It's very fresh and watery, I can feel some melon in the opening but when it settles down - IT SETTLES DOWN and I can't notice that I've sprayed it at all. In summer it's about 2-3 hours on my skin and a bit more on clothes but in autumn I can't even feel it after an hour! :( Thumbs up if you need a Summer-Only frag.

    02 December, 2010

    Showing 31 to 60 of 1242.