Fragrance Reviews from July 2010

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    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Visit by Azzaro

    Moderately sweetened cedar, in the family of Gucci Rush and Tam Dao...I should have reviewed it concurrently with Rush. What's nice here is that Visit has some definite juniper in the top which is pretty refreshing if you realize what it is, otherwise it just seems like sniffing glue. It sets the stage for this to be a rather "light" heavy/winter scent, which I have to respect. As much as I like this for how strictly pure and true of a wood scent it is, it's too blunt and unfinished. It survives better than Rush, which isn't saying much, but still ends up just being a romantic evening stroll through the lumberyard, with wood glue cocktails for two.

    25th July, 2010

    Redbeard's avatar

    United States United States

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    Baldessarini by Baldessarini

    Major letdown. Kind of strange, almost banana-like fruit opening, that maintains a pretty high level of sweetness as it goes. I know a lot of people like this, but for me it turns straight to candy within 10-15 minutes...Starburst of some sort, I think strawberry. I would really like to taste the imaginary candy that this smells like, but I don't need to smell like it myself. The metallic aspect also reminds me of something with aspartame or sucralose, which I hate. And as a shirt-dabber, I can tell you that this stuff stains bright yellow and it never comes out...something that normally happens with much more concentrated brews.

    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Dark Rose by Czech & Speake

    Dark ,dark middle eastern rose , some oudh which somehow comes across as a bit plastic -like on my skin. Other than a short-lived plastic note, the rose is quite dramatic and amazing. A very good rose fragrance . Simple but thoroughly explores rose ! I still prefer my velvety Fleurs de Bulgarie by Creed.

    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Le Maroc pour Elle by Tauer

    Animalistic rose - jasmine- lavender ,quite bold begnning and unusual. Interesting scent. Quite opaque and dense in smell ,quite raw at first. I think the patchouli takes over quite a bit on my skin. Not my style but I can see the appeal for some.

    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Iris Oriental / Iris Taïzo 14 by Parfumerie Generale

    Now called Iris Oriental - this is a lovely spicey, powdery iris scent. Sweet woody and loses some of the iris on my skin later as it dries down. It's good but not an iris I would buy for an iris craving. Unisex.

    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Iris Ganache by Guerlain

    On me this begins a little bit sour- reminds me of Iris Pallida by L'Artisan ( which did not sit well with me ! ) and then a little more creamy sweetness comes through and it starts to smell like vanilla. Light iris vanilla. Not very memorable for me.

    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Jarling by JAR

    Jar doesn't provide notes but I think there is almond, heliotrope, anise, vanilla and musk ( maybe violet ) in this. Well, it's along those lines. If you love Frederic Malle's L'eau D'Hiver ....... Lea by by Lea St. Barth - you will probably like this. You get the picture !
    Quite a big anise and almond start. Almond -vanilla, heliotrope-musk drydown.
    Soft long lasting but low sillage as parfum extrait. Quality is evident but probably one of the less unusual and captivating JAR scents.



    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Incense Rosé by Tauer

    Rose fizzy lollipop beginning which becomes a deeper incense but always rosy . Very interesting, lovable, fun rose fragrance. Long lasting and sniffable.

    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Volo AZ 686 by Profumum

    The sleeper of the Profumum line - one which I heard is weird. To be truthful, it's a lot less weird than Kai or Monyette. It's gardenia ,vanilla and coconut. The main difference between this and the Kai and Monyette scents is THIS does not smell of plastic flowers.

    Opens up gassy gardenia and rounded by vanilla and touch of coconut which is not very evident. It's just a melding of all three notes. Smells like quality . The name is appropriate and made me smile because it's named after a flight from Rome to Caracas. If you sniff up close intently, you get aircraft engine oil gas but from further away, the gardenia and vanilla is more evident. A great and unusual tropical scent. Unisex . Perhaps a tropical Caron En Avion !

    Thanks to a great basenoter family member for this opportunity to try it out ! :)


    25th July, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Une Rose Chyprée by Tauer

    Lovely lovely rose fragrance on a chypre base but seems oriental too. Romantic , beautiful rose. Quite tenacious. Deep gold colored liquid.
    Begins greenish rose, perhaps some geranium ,quite chypre like to start.Progresses quie a lot - vanilla is evident and a little incensey.

    25th July, 2010

    epicurean's avatar

    United States United States

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    Drakkar Noir by Guy Laroche

    Drakkar Noir was to the 80s what Cool Water and Le Mâle were to the 90s (and what Le Mâle STILL is as I write): the sure-fire frag for high school kids hangin' out after school at the mall or downtown or wherever they'll see as many chicks as possible. DN was so ubiquitous in its day over in the US that it was like a uniform. I bypassed it and went straight for Antaeus at 16, but that's another story. Many years later, I can appreciate DN for its studly appeal; there's nothing dangerously musky about it, but it simply smells like a guy who wants to smell like a guy who's a man around town; very unpretentious, and that was its charm then and still is. Unbelievably, DN is almost a niche fragrance over here in Europe; very good specialty shops carry it, and it's got a kind of cult following for those in the know. Anyway, I would love to encounter a guy over here in Europe who wore it, but I only ever smell it in the US when I'm back visiting.

    25th July, 2010

    shamu1's avatar

    United States United States

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    Rose Absolue by Yves Rocher

    I really wanted to like this because I'm a big YR fan and I like rose fragrances, but this just doesn't cut it. I find this to be rough and acerbic. The rose in this is not smooth or soft, but rather somewhat medicinal smelling. Its roughness is exacerbated by a sour, synthetic smelling note blended in with it, but which I cannot identify.

    Everything does mellow out a bit after a half hour, and it smells like all the notes eventually try to blend in with one another, but they never quite do. The notes all smell like they're fighting against one another, never creating a coherent accord. I detect very little, if any, patchouli in this.

    Rose Absolue isn't an awful fragrance, but it's not particularly good either. It's biggest flaw is its poor blending and lack of balance. I found Rose Absolue to be a disappointment.

    MY RATING: 5/10

    25th July, 2010

    onceling's avatar



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    Hidden Fantasy by Britney Spears

    On my skin this is a sweet, spicy version of Fantasy. It had poor sillage but good longevity very close to the skin. I wouldn't run out to buy it, but it is generally available inexpensively anyway.

    More appropriate for winter given the notes but because of the poor sillage there is no harm wearing in the warmer weather if you fancy. It is very fruity like the others in this line and has nothing particularly unique or exciting about it. Still, I wouldn't hesitate to give as a gift to any young perfume fashionista that likes celeb frags.

    25th July, 2010

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Parfum d'Habit by Maître Parfumeur et Gantier

    Unlike some of the other reviewers, I did not encounter the 'macho behemoth.' Perhaps my decision to dab this on rather than have it sprayed on might have something to do with it; on my skin, PARFUM D'HABIT blossoms wonderfully like the fragrance equivalent of 'tall, dark and handsome'. It is masculine and resinuous, with a just touch of birch tar-like leather but there is also something fresh and outdoorsy about its profile which I attribute to a judicious use of high-quality frankincense.

    I have a somewhat tricky relationship with sandalwood and have had to give up sandalwood-prominent scents like Heritage and Egoiste but here the sandalwood is well-blended, lending a smoothness without raising its own signature note. The restraint in the composition is indeed remarkable. But projection is first-rate so wear it lightly or the scent wears you instead.

    Notes: bergamot, patchouli, amber, incense, leather, sandalwood

    25th July, 2010

    seasoldiermarine's avatar

    United States United States

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    Varon Dandy by Parera

    I Love this old Spanish Classic. It's a Lavendery, very Floral, Powdery scent that stays close to your skin. And it brings back memories of My Youth whenever I wear it. Many Classy, older Latin Men wore this back in the day (60's-70's) I get a lot of compliments wearing this

    25th July, 2010

    bookwyrmsmith's avatar

    United States United States

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    Heaven Sent (new) by Dana

    Inoffensive baby powder scent in a frosted glass bottle with a fan shaped cherub decorated cap .Johnson & Johnson baby products are probably a cheaper way to smell like this. Any age or gender could safely use this.Good as a child's starter fragrance then grow up into BulgariBlu, or Blu Notte.Not a terribly interesting scent but definitely a clean one.

    25th July, 2010

    Nile_Etland's avatar



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    No. 5 by Chanel

    My mother was a great fan of No.5 (also Mitsouko and Joy), but although I grew to love the others I have never been comfortable with No.5, it may be a masterpiece & one of the Greatest Fragrances of All Time but it will never be part of my wardrobe.

    I have always found the brilliance and strength of the aldehydes like an 'icepick between the eyes', as Luca Turin said of some fragrance he didn't like. Maybe I'm hyperosmic to aldehydes, as I react in a similar way to other fragrances that have a high aldehyde content (I even find the top note of 31 Rue Cambon a bit headache-inducing, although the drydown is fine) but whatever the reason this one is not for me.

    25th July, 2010

    vinramani09's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lacoste Challenge by Lacoste

    I am a fan of lemon notes but this one is terribly done. Its a synthetic detergent which should be use to clean public bathrooms. The bottle is tacky and the urine color of the juice is not helping . 1/10 for this one.

    25th July, 2010

    Kerosene's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lolita Lempicka Fleur Défendue / Forbidden Flower by Lolita Lempicka

    This scent just bugs my nose. It's to acrid or something. The musky tones in it are very dry and irritating. Im not a fan of this one. If it had a little more sweetness, it'd be tolerable.

    25th July, 2010

    sophi's avatar

    Greece Greece

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    Eaudemoiselle by Givenchy

    Tested today!Light and fresh floral woody musc perfume!
    It has a sweet citrus opening and a fresh floral heart!Lasting power seems good!
    Nice for day wearing for a hot sunny weather!

    25th July, 2010

    A. Homme's avatar

    United States United States

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    Van Cleef & Arpels pour Homme by Van Cleef & Arpels

    I've been sampling this monster for a few days now. It's a complex fragrance, not to be taken lightly. Frankly I don't get on with it, and I think I've come up with the primary accords that are coming at me from my right arm:

    We have baby wipes atop a base of convenience-store incense, with some light floral notes sprinkled about.

    I realize that this is a respected formulation, but I don't get it. It's definitely complex, and well put together. Not to mention a loudmouth in the sillage department. In the end, I find it to be powdery, moderately spicy and brooding without any solid base notes. This makes me think of the movie "Despicable Me," which I recently took my son to see. If Dr. Gru had a scent, this would be it.

    While I personally think it's worthy of a thumbs down, I'm going with a neutral for now because there's a chance I'm missing something here. Definitely can't see myself wearing this.

    25th July, 2010

    Sportsman5's avatar

    United States United States

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    Givenchy Play Intense by Givenchy

    Positives: decent projection and solid longevity of 8+ hours. A great fall and winter night out or date scent.

    Possible Drawbacks: Could be cloying if do not like sweet scents. However, I have worn it in the summer with no problems.

    Overall: a light gourmand that many women will love, but is not as overpowering as angel men or as feminine as pi.

    25th July, 2010

    Brutus's avatar



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    Égoïste / L'Égoïste by Chanel

    The opening is a tasteful and minimalist but rather demure interlacing of very subtle, powdery rose and coriander, with a delicate woodiness in the background. This is in fact the fragrance itself in a nutshell. I do get the tangerine at the opening, but it is nestled far in the recesses and disappears with the onset of the fragrance's middle trajectory. The sandalwood comes in rather early and sits like a scented oriental fan atop the vanilla linen lining the table on which the composition stands, rather like a crystalline vase holding a single rose, a rose whose stem is immersed in a very pale ruby-colored water that flickers with light as one moves about it. Is this fragrance sexy? Not nearly as sexy as say, Caron's Third Man, to which it seems to me like a spectral cousin. The fragrances have a faint structural similarity. The delicate, isolated rose which makes the centerpiece of Egoiste can be detected amid the shadowy pool of purples, deep blues and scarlet florals that makes up the heart of Third Man; and the sandalwood and vanilla base of Egoiste finds a seductive and complex counterpart in the musk, cedarwood, patchouli and vanilla depths of Third Man. This comparison might seem a bit of a stretch to some familiar with both fragrances, but I can't help but mark the recollection of Third Man each time I rub a bit of Egoiste into the back of my hand; rather, Egoiste seems to me like a pale memory of the passion of Third Man. A rogue lover in mourning, almost. I prefer to take on the vital spirit of the rogue himself.

    25th July, 2010

    Brutus's avatar



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    John Varvatos by John Varvatos

    Rather weak juice, as TropiRock complains. My wrist required quite a generous splash to appreciably bring out the dimensions of the scent. Immediate notes are astringent and grassy with flickerings of apple spirits far off, this then swiftly and dramatically changes to a bright and sugary blue-green accord of jasmine and cinnamoned vanilla; this latter note comes to dominate the middle of the fragrance as the jasmine cools. For the half-hour to 45 minutes that the vanilla ran the show this fragrance was much too buttery-cinnabun rich and linear for my taste, but as the vanilla wanes the mellowed jasmine is uncovered once again and the result, for a very short while, is a delicately sweet, much softer, and lightly floral recapitulation of the initial jasmine-vanilla confection. In a word, this final stage of the fragrance smells like one might imagine Santa Claus would smell, albeit, Santa imagined not as a cartoonish caricature but as a magical, ageless fellow. All this isn't to say that this scent is clearly appropriate for any age. I'd say that young men should only wear it if they feel comfortable in one of dad's old hand-me-down Stafford sweaters, sipping scotch or eggnog at a family gathering, perhaps with a very chaste date. This stays very close to the skin. In sum, it certainly won't raise the ladies' body temperatures, but it might add something to the pleasantness of an evening near the fire with friends and family---only, however, if applied a good hour in advance of one's plans, as that middle vanilla salvo is indeed a caricature.

    25th July, 2010

    Brutus's avatar



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    Vintage by John Varvatos

    A sparkling and somewhat "Disney" Christmas cider out of the bottle that mellows into a spicy, quasi-aquatic patchouli and jasmine accord. This smells for a while like a nice potpourri one might encounter in mom's guest bathroom. After a while the pinks of the patchouli begin to recede, but never completely vanish, and we have a linear sweet-aquatic jasmine middle, somewhat reminiscent of Cool Water. This begins to sour ever so slightly on my wrist somewhere as the middle fades. I don't get any of the tobacco. Ho hum.

    25th July, 2010

    PerfumeCollector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Halston 1-12 by Halston

    This is an extremely good fragrance that sells for almost nothing. Initially, it was a very expensive perfume and highly considered by everybody, so much so that it became the second selling perfume of all times, and now it is discontinued.
    The scandalous life, AIDS, and awful death of Roy Halston, and the fact that it was sold to a big cosmetics marketer really hurt the image of this perfume.
    Probably the low price made people to look down at it, but it was a very good product and smelled expensive. And the bottle is a work of art.
    Fortunately it can still be found in ebay at a very good price.
    It was a masterpiece that had its halcyon days while under Roy Halston but unfortunately was squanderd by the big cosmetic firm that bought Halston Design.

    25th July, 2010

    PerfumeCollector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ungaro III by Ungaro

    Probably my favorite fragrance of them all. A very fresh citric opening with a hint of lavander and vodka that is very unique, and the spiciness of coriander make it extremely pleasant. As the day goes along, it becomes more woody and the dark rose becames more and more dominant, plus it has so many nuances that is very difficult to describe, patchouli, vetiver, oakmoss and woods. It lasts and lasts and great sillage. Very masculine and I could wear it on any occasion.

    25th July, 2010

    vinramani09's avatar

    United States United States

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    Black Aoud by Montale

    I was really keen to get this fragrance but I have mixed opinions about this. The longevity is not that long on my skin , 4-5 hours tops and while the dry down is great , the bug spray smells you have to endure to get the dry down are not so fun. Attar and Louban are much more sophisticated and long lasting on my skin. I think it is over rated .

    This is an Update *************
    I got the concentrated version from Montale , and the longevity is 16 hours , sillage is strong for the first 2-3 hours but dies down after , but the drydown is great. The bottle I received from Kuwait, was probably watered down or fake , this is pure magic. An intoxicating potion, something a Byronic hero would wear, very dark, emotional and sexy at the same time.

    25th July, 2010 (Last Edited: 02nd February, 2012)

    The_Cologneist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cool Water Game by Davidoff

    Revising an older and much longer review, I have once again changed my mind about Cool Water Game. This time I am writing it off indefinitely.

    Game opens up with what is supposed to be a watermelon top note, that really just smells like a cheap apple mixed with sour grapefruit and a hint of basil. It eventually turns into a lavender dominated middle, combined with leather or suede (although not listed) and a patchouli base. The quality of the notes separate are pretty bad, maybe except for the patchouli in the end; and the combination of them together are just horrible. It basically smells like apple juice spilled on a leather couch and sat there in the sun, not to be confused with Nicole Miller for men, which is an apple/leather fragrance that actually smells amazing, this smells nothing like that. Game is chemical smelling, smells like make up or nail polish at some point in time. Then again, I have smelled worse. This one is probably the worst from the Cool Water brand though, as most of the Cool Water flankers are very safe and inoffensive. Game is just all over the place, it takes risks, and they do not prevail.

    Save yourself the agony, and just avoid this one all together.. there is no watermelon here. Perhaps with Game, they were going for a mature man's aquatic. It didn't turn out that way.

    25th July, 2010 (Last Edited: 11th March, 2014)

    manicboy's avatar

    United States United States

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    Silver Shadow by Davidoff

    The note pyramid looks inviting but sprayed on skin, this one smells cheap. Really cheap, probably the worst amber I've ever smelled. Kind of reminds me of bad knockoff of the exceptional Obsession for Men. Hard to find much redeeming value here. Yet another Davidoff fragrance to heap onto the men's fragrance pile. If this were to go away, no one would notice. It's frags like these that could give Kurkdjian a bad reputation and ruin his budding career.

    26th July, 2010

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