Fragrance Reviews from December 2010

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    Mar Azul's avatar

    Bulgaria Bulgaria

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    L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme by Guerlain

    This is the instant smell I get when entering a perfume or gift shop. I don't know exactly why. Is it the dark vanilla ambiance spray? The cocoa/chocolate, a smell imprinted so deep in our brains it's almost archetypal? Is it because the assistants keep spraying A*Men in the air showing the average costumer a new exciting path out of the beaten path of his beloved but overused Hugo? Or, on the other hand, is it actually the combined smell of the whole Boss and CK sections at once?
    Anyway, it's a smell saying "I'm not in the drugstore anymore"; an instant sign of quality perfumery which, however, lacks any personality. You could recognize some Guerlainesque boozy-gourmand accord in the heart but only if you're looking for it and I also doubt that this is the point. There's a perfect green accord somewhere there as well but again you have to force yourself to appreciate it. There are many other things actually, none of them brave enough.
    Without being cheap or trivial, L'Instant just escapes from the radar, setting a new definition of "generic". And it is perfectly wearable, as is cocoa butter lotion.

    27 December, 2010 (Last Edited: 27 November, 2012)

    jenniemic's avatar

    United States United States

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    D&G L'Amoureaux 6 by Dolce & Gabbana

    I wish this scent had something more: it is nice, but it never surpasses good. As a female, I didn't feel overpowered by a masculine scent, and I enjoyed that unisex quality. I feel like it would be a nice scent to wear at night, but I wish it had more of an edge or more darkness to it. It is a subtle scent; it doesn't have a ton of sillage. Overall, a nice scent, but not purchase-worthy.

    28 December, 2010

    The_Cologneist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Hilfiger Est. 1985 by Tommy Hilfiger

    Damn you Tommy Hilfiger! This stuff is not good! With such good releases like Tommy, True Star and T, amongst others.. I was expecting a little more.

    Bought it at Wal-Mart on sale for 15 bucks, and returned it.. Ya it was THAT bad. I know I used the term "chemical" often when defining the quality of these cheapies, and this once is now exception. Rightfully so.. this is VERY chemical; both in smell and feel.

    The opening is a harsh citrus, fruity, spicy, woodsy mix infused with ginger and synthetic smelling floral notes. As if you couldn't tell by the note pyramid.. this stuff is all over the place. But it's also very well blended; which makes it hard to detect individual notes. Even when I look at the pyramid, I don't get most of those notes individually. Instead, I get a poorly done combination of 20-30 top notes that you'd find in various mainstream designer fragrances, shoved in a blender with a bunch of electronics. Blended together and BOOM.. they catch on fire. If this confuses you, let me make it simple. 1985 smells like a mix of the most synthetic smelling top notes imaginable and a bunch of electronics set of fire (giving out that "burnt/fried" circuit" accord).

    I'm sure it's just a matter of time before they discontinue this catastrophe. While it's completely unwearable, it doesn't smell putrid. There is a tea note that shines through eventually, the ginger accord is ok once it simmers down, and as it dries it becomes a little better. But, for the most part, this is an accident.

    28 December, 2010

    scentsitivity's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fumidus by Profumum

    Fumidus opens with a no-holds-barred blast of Scotch Whisky, both peaty and boozy. At this stage, I am impressed with the realism of the composition. But is it wearable as a fragrance? I am skeptical. The booziness settles out and what remains is a competent earthy, vetiver, a touch smoky, but certainly wearable and likeable, if less remarkable. I give it a neutral rating.

    28 December, 2010

    lauraschoice's avatar

    United States United States

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    Inspire by Ellen Tracy

    This lovely soft floral has no citrus notes that I could detect but I love it so much I don't care. I can really douse myself with it; you need a lot to make it last but it doesn't overwhelm you so it's all good. Perfect either for daytime or for a quiet evening out.

    28 December, 2010

    sean-dt's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Narcisse Noir by Caron

    Can a perfume tell a story? There are countless theories about the way the sense of smell is tied up with memory, but with Narcisse Noir there is something I don't understand. It reminds me of Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard. It really conjures up the atmosphere of old Hollywood films, but as I only smelled the perfume recently, and never met an old-school Hollywood femme fatale, there can't be any memory that Narcisse Noir triggers whenever I smell it. Still, it just seems to fit my image of this other world, and it just so happens that it was the perfume Norma Desmond drenched herself with as she made the transition from the glamorous to the grotesque. Indeed actress Gloria Swanson is said to have had the Sunset Boulevard set sprayed with the stuff, so it must have had a similar effect on her.

    Now I'm sure if I could trace back all of the scents I have ever smelled throughout my life as well as the complex of associations I have made with them, it would become clear why this perfume presents itself to me the way it does. Still, I can’t imagine how I could possibly interpret its bold mix of coppery tones over a dank spicy base as anything other than the dark edgy side of glamour from a bygone age. Maybe I'm suggestible, or maybe Narcisse Noir actually is a film noir in a bottle.

    28 December, 2010

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Boss Bottled by Hugo Boss

    Very sweet, slightly fruity. Aromatic and a bit spicy.
    No particular distinguishing features, and the sweetness gets oppressive almost immediately.

    28 December, 2010

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Intimately Beckham Men by Beckham

    I'm surprised by this one. It isn't bad!
    Things in its favor: not sweet, not heavy, not synthetic in character.
    Opens with a leafy, stalky green note.
    Has a bit of freshness but is not soapy or ozonic. Perhaps mint leaf, but not a toothpaste note.
    Gets smooth but is a very pleasant scent overall.

    28 December, 2010

    iMaverick's avatar



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    Vivara (original) by Emilio Pucci

    Blessed to find a small mini bottle of the parfum. Very green chypre. Screeches in the very beginning, but settles to a bright sparkling floral chypre, something between Miss Dior and YSL Y, but Vivara is much more herbaceous in the drydown compared to the warm leathery notes in Miss Dior and the warm musky chypre of Y.

    28 December, 2010

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Jaguar (new) by Jaguar

    Rather sweet and musky. At times, it suggests bug spray or a screechy synthetic.
    Boiled celery leaves?
    Verges on irritating, what saves it a bit is that it is not too heavy.

    28 December, 2010

    LadyDanio's avatar



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    Nanette Lepore by Nanette Lepore

    I'm a very picky perfume person. I find most of them to be smelly and heavy (though I confess to loving Red Door when I was 8), and really prefer the nice smell of soap more than anything else on my body. However, I am a girl and so I kept trying to find a scent so that I could be like all the other girls. Enter Nanette Lepore. I swear I have tried on every scent over the years and one day I methodically went through Sephora's collection. Nanette Lepore was the only scent I kept coming back to, because it's unique blend of notes draws me in and works wonderfully with my body chemistry. Nothing else in the store worked as well. Nothing.

    So why do I like Nanette Lepore? First off, there's that lovely, intoxicating blend of rose and jasmine notes. The rose is light and airy, which I really like, while the jasmine creates a deeper, more lush scent to balance the rose. The amber and sandalwood notes give the depth to this fragrance that it needs. It's the perfect everyday scent and it goes easily from day to night wear.

    On my body the rose settles in after a little while, so the blend of darker and brighter notes are equal. This makes it light and romantic yet gives it that oomph needed to set it apart from ordinary floral scents.

    This is my signature perfume. I love it and I couldn't be happier that it was created.

    28 December, 2010

    sean-dt's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Mitsouko by Guerlain

    Some perfumes make me smile, but I happily move on to something else the next day on my quest for another masterpiece. Then there are those that become an important part of my life. I have a lasting relationship with Mitsouko, still I'm not really sure what it smells like. Sometimes it's a delicate veil of almond and pepper, sometimes it's a dark wood of a mysterious temple, and sometimes it's what I think molten gold should smell like.

    For me Mitsouko has so many faces, and I know I haven't discovered all of them yet. As soon as I think I have it pinned down, something catches me off guard and I discover a new perfume. Mitsouko got me interested in women's perfumery. One day while absentmindedly browsing a Guerlain counter I happened to pick up a bottle, and the exquisitely delicate balance of contrasting notes did something to me. I've been hunting for another Misouko ever since, and while I have since found quite a few perfumes that I couldn't live without, Mitsouko has a unique place in the perfume firmament.

    28 December, 2010

    sean-dt's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Vol de Nuit by Guerlain

    Vol de Nuit is often described as a green perfume, but for me it's more autumnal, like brown leaves. Once the opening fades, the sweet suede-like vanillic base takes over, until what remains after several hours is a glorious dry resin. While this in itself is wonderful, it's not the most amazing thing about this perfume. The real magic is an unbelievably delicate aura that seems to appear out of nowhere just when it seems the perfume is fading. This happens very quietly and without any drama -which makes it all the more breathtaking. It's like glancing across a room to discover someone who is utterly ravishing but doesn't know it. No histrionics, no posing, just pure understated loveliness.

    28 December, 2010

    sean-dt's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Eternity by Calvin Klein

    I recognise this, as I've smelled it a thousand times before but I never really noticed it. That says it all really. It's quite nice, but so what?

    28 December, 2010

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    APOM pour Homme by Maison Francis Kurkdjian

    A PIECE OF ME speaks of quality, in polite whispers rather than in bold statements. Think of it as a peek at a coveted luxury timepiece from beneath crisp white cuffs, or the quiet air of elegance in a highborn lady, or impeccably polished manners that comes with good upbringing. Orange flowers over a subtly honeyed masculine accord of cedar and amber, some reviewers might consider the fragrance a little underwhelming. Perhaps it is simple, but it's never simplistic. After all true quality doesn't have to be complicated.

    28 December, 2010

    Subbie's avatar



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    Armani Code / Black Code by Giorgio Armani

    On my skin, all this evolves into is the smell of tic-tacs. You know, powdery, sweet, slightly minty. I guess some people would like that but if I want to smell like breath mints, I'll rub tic-tacs all over my body.

    Don't get me wrong - it's fairly pleasant and I'd wear it if I had it, but that's just not enough for me to give it a thumbs up.

    If there was a time to use this, I'd still prefer La Nuit de l'Homme. It's quite similar but turns into something nicer on me.

    YMMV.

    28 December, 2010

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Aqua Universalis by Maison Francis Kurkdjian

    No, despite its name this is not another aquatic. Anyone who is familiar with Kurkdjian's work would probably know by now that when it comes to translucent floral compositions, few could come close to his level of mastery. As he had shown in MDCI Enlèvement au Sérail, the marriage of citrus and muguet is again proven to be the winning combination in AQUA UNIVERSALIS, imbueing it with just the right level of floralcy and a perceptible sense of laundered freshness. Unfortunately, longevity is not its strong suit.

    28 December, 2010

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Forest Rain by Kiehl's

    Aptly named I think, though not necessarily in execution. While I do get the impression of dripping-wet green foliage, there is a raw freshness about it that could come across as a little soapy. Some oakmoss in the base or perhaps a more prominent vetiver could do more to beef up its somewhat lightweight presence. Overall, a creditable effort by Kiehl's, but it's not nearly as good an outdoorsy scent as Lalique pour Homme Equus.

    28 December, 2010

    codehorror's avatar

    United States United States

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    Joop! Homme by Joop!

    This fragrance causes a constant internal struggle with in me on one side I hate it because it is so over the top sweet in such a synthetic manner and swear I will never use it again. But then there the other side of me that loved using this since college and loves it because it is so sweet and gets you noticed and lasts what seems like forever. One thing is for sure this will have a place in my collection if for nothing more then nostalgia. One thing I will give this fragrance credit for is for being so bold from its hot pink juice to its loud scent which if not applied correctly can be down right cloyingly offensive. Love it or hate it one thing is for sure once you smell it you won't soon forget it LOL.

    28 December, 2010

    jclaxton78's avatar

    United States United States

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    Guess by Marciano for Men by Guess

    I am new to the fragrance game. I just got this and really enjoy it. I have colognes that I love and ones that women love (the only reason I wear those ones). But there's something about this cologne that makes me want to constantly smell myself. I see it as a cologne that anyone could appreciate being around. I bought this as a blind buy based on reviews from numerous sites. This works best as an evening or fall/winter scent but what do I know, I'm a rookie. Slightly reminds me of Obsession but softer and not "old man-ish" like Obsession smells to me. Paid $16 (shipped) for a 3.4oz tester, what a steal.

    28 December, 2010

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Cologne pour le Soir by Maison Francis Kurkdjian

    What could be potentially a dense honey-sweetened rose is given a much needed lift by the dry smoky incense, with the powdery benzoin filling in the gaps. The result is astounding - COLOGNE POUR LE SOIR is a seamlessly blended scent that is comfortingly warm, ambery-musky with nuances of soft leather, and ultimately very very sensual indeed. It wears close to the skin, which is not necessarily a bad thing. For this is simply perfect for a long and languorous evening of...lovemaking.

    28 December, 2010

    codehorror's avatar

    United States United States

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    1 Million by Paco Rabanne

    This is a great scent if you are young trying to get noticed, and your life revolves around clubbing and bar hopping, the scent is amazing in those situations. However I feel it being such a great clubbing scent is also its down fall, it is becoming very popular and in time will soon be a common scent and will not get the great amount of attention it once did and it will meet the fate of many other attention catching scents before it. That being said this fragrance to me is sweet to the point of almost being feminine, which is no suprise when one looks at todays trends. It does to me give off a bubble gum type scent which is pleasing and many girls I have met seem to like. However for me this fragrance is not very versital, I can only wear it in the colder months or when I am out on the town clubbing, any other time it just does not work for me. Do I love this scent NO, do I hate it NO, to me it is just another scent that I have in my collection that I use at certain times and even in those situations it is not my go to scent.

    28 December, 2010

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Cologne pour le Matin by Maison Francis Kurkdjian

    Spraying this on brings such a delight with its gorgeously soft, slightly powdery orange blossoms that draw well-deserved comparisons to L'Eau d'Hiver and Cologne Blanche. In fact, I think it even surpasses those two, particularly for Kurkdjian's astute inclusion of thyme and lavender to infuse it with a mildly soapy/herbal element of interest. A real charmer!

    28 December, 2010

    scentsitivity's avatar

    United States United States

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    Himalaya by Creed

    Starts with an ambiguous citrus and slight gunpowder note. Becomes peppery in the middle. This settles out with time. The base centers on woods and musk, with heavy emphasis on the latter. Also, some soapiness throughout.

    I find this to be rather uninteresting and mainstream. Nothing special or exotic here.

    28 December, 2010

    MOONB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Love in Black by Creed

    Love in Black is one of those Creeds that I had prefigured quite well. After reading and surmising about it for some time, I finally had a chance to sample it, and wasn't disappointed. My only gripe is with the top - what's with Creed's top notes? The unnecessary amplification of the doughy iris lent the first forty minutes a distinct Play-Doh feel, which, while not altogether unpleasant, was not compelling enough to make me want to purchase a bottle. An hour into the scent's evolution, however, brought a very different flower arrangement to the forefront: iris, violets, and rose, with a touch of cedar wood. Once the iris opens up and the violet and cedar appear, Love in Black becomes a refreshing and playful floral - very sexy and sweet. The closing becomes a little too sweet for my liking, and for about fifteen minutes, I got a cotton-candy sugarbomb, which seemed to be part of Love in Black's second life. As the sugar wound down, a powdery cedar and blackcurrant accord stepped forward, and the composition felt centered again. This is a Creed that takes patience; while most fragrances lure buyers with friendly five-minute tops, Love in Black insists on shoving iris in your face for the better part of an hour, before showing its true depth and complexity. Strange that it's marketed only to women, as it seems very wearable for a man, albeit one with the right disposition. For Love in Black, that disposition is quite sunny.

    28 December, 2010

    MOONB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Silver Mountain Water by Creed

    Challenging, unique, and refreshing are words that spring to mind when considering Silver Mountain Water, with emphasis on that first trait. While it pleases and uplifts with its tangy citrus and green tea, the darkness of the currant creates an earthy, astringent tension that drives the overall character of the scent. I think Luca Turin used the derogatory word "glue" when describing SMW in "The" Guide, but the less-malevolent reference to printer ink found in reviews here seem fairer and more accurate. Somewhere in its construct, lurking behind the synthetic berries and realistic tea, is a note in SMW that defies nature. It's cool and detached, and pungently metallic. It's the reason I strongly disliked SMW for the first ten minutes of wearing. But as the greenness of the tea, the tang of the expanding citrus, and the sweetness of the blackcurrant opened, the overall effect, tied together with the ink note, made me rethink things. This is very subversively fresh - not generically so, as in Green Irish Tweed - and therefore more singular and attractive in the long run. Definitely one of the better modern Creeds.

    28 December, 2010

    MOONB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Erolfa by Creed

    No doubt the chicks love EROLFA on men, just as they also love Cool Water, Acqua di Gio, Le Male, Code, and Unforgivable. For some inexplicable reason, women, especially American women, are brutally attracted to calone, synthetic ambergris, synthetic vanilla, and sugared fruit. That's the bad news; the good news is that EROLFA boasts none of those, yet still maintains a sensuous profile in the league of modern aquatics for the lads.

    I shouldn't say it lacks all of the aforementioned ingredients, however - there is certainly the salty, ambergris Millésime base upholding EROLFA. And as usual, the Creed top notes fail to impress. I don't know what EROLFA was in 1992, but the version I'm smelling now is nothing more than a bright lemon/lime citrus burst, followed by a quaint salty ozonic accord that wafts lazily into ambergris, and a vague suggestion of sandalwood (driftwood?) in the dry down. I'm left with a wrist that smells like it's been to the beach, though intuitively closer to the Strand of Sligo, Ireland than anything you'd smell at the Jersey Shore. Two points for pleasant exoticism in a tired genre - three demerits for being formulaic, weakly-concentrated, and responsible for Becka the Barstool Temptress clinging to me all night. EROLFA is not nearly as bad as Turin makes it out to be in "The" Guide, but it sure isn't worth the sticker shock.

    28 December, 2010 (Last Edited: 29 December, 2010)

    Mario-K's avatar

    Poland Poland

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    Molecule 01 by Escentric Molecules

    This scent on woman works better, than hundred pills of Viagra... :)
    It's........... Awesome!

    Nothing can compare with Molecule 01. Longevity? It comes and goes. Mostly comes. When it comes it's heaven.It's hard to describe this scent, but I have to say - for me it's modern- oriental-vaginal scent. Don't laught ;) I was cooking dinner, using onion, bacon, etc, I washed my hands couple times, and scent staying like when I sprayed first time. Next day, after bath - same effect. It's not cheap, but it's worthy...
    New era enters our territory. :)

    28 December, 2010 (Last Edited: 31st December, 2010)

    MassMenace's avatar



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    Bleu de Chanel by Chanel

    I love it. A modern woody aquatic that keeps the wearer constantly sniffing his arm to see what new smells will unfold during the wearing. When I first tried this over the counter, I immediately wrote it off as an utter disappointment. However, I kept taking sniffs at my arm (obviously where it had been tested) to almost wake myself up. It didn't smell the least bit natural, mind you, but the smell itself took me to places in my head. First, I'm taken to reception at the Four Seasons Hotel in New York, then to a tall and wide museum with glass walls, followed by a trip in a private jet.
    What I'm getting at is that Bleu De Chanel takes my nose on a journey to places I get to visit once in a blue moon, and would like to visit more frequently. Why BdC is receiving so much hate mail is beyond me, but you're also reading a review from the same guy that thought 'Just Friends' was a comedic masterpiece...

    28 December, 2010 (Last Edited: 02 January, 2011)

    everlast30's avatar



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    Baldessarini Strictly Private by Baldessarini

    this scent is way too strong and overpowering, it smells like baby powder and way too feminin, i really can't see how a guy can wear this

    28 December, 2010 (Last Edited: 06 January, 2011)

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