Fragrance Reviews from July 2011

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    findtheriver's avatar

    United States United States

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    Kenzo pour Homme by Kenzo

    From the ultra-fresh modernistic opening through the clove infused citrus middle, I really wanted to love this scent. Unfortunately the flowery powder smell in the dry down reminds me of the insides of a woman's vinyl makeup bag.

    11th July, 2011

    Swanky's avatar

    United States United States

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    Preferred Stock by Coty

    For Coty's 1990 release they resurrected the name of a men's fragrance that dates at least back to the 1950s. I don't know if there is any continuity in scent with the midcentury model (although I suspect there is none since this is, as others have noted, similar to Red and hence more modern). The name has a masculine ring to it and connotes business suits and power deals, yet this is not a formal scent. I remember it as soapier (I owned a bottle upon its release) than the current formula. The bottle I now possess has a fruity top note, perhaps a juniper berry or plum. The patchouli and musk predominate and lend an impressive longevity to this budget offering. Overall I think anybody from 16 to 86 can wear this. It's better than the supposed "sport" fragrances on shelves today and for the low cost, even cash-strapped youngsters can splurge on a bottle. Guys, the other boys at the flip-flop store won't be wearing this, trust me.

    11th July, 2011

    findtheriver's avatar

    United States United States

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    Aqua pour Homme by Bulgari

    Great casual summer scent. It puts me in mind of hanging out with friends by the beach on a warm summer night.
    At the risk of turning someone off to this great cologne, I cant help but notice a slight resemblance to A and F Fierce. Perhaps a grown-up more complex version. In any case, it's good stuff.

    11th July, 2011

    Izzy's avatar

    United States United States

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    Light Blue Pour Homme by Dolce & Gabbana

    The opening of this scent is the drydown of Kenneth Cole Black which is ok.It will guide you through your day & get you home safe. Nothing to applaud about. There are better fruit aquas out there.

    11th July, 2011

    Shifty Bat's avatar

    United States United States

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    Furyo by Jacques Bogart

    And the 80's high-fives me again! Furyo is a deliciously stinky patchouli bomb with an herbaceous twist and the heart of an animal. With the sweet cinnamon and green wormwoody team-up from Gambler and the warm and loud honey and patchouli of Giorgio for Men, Furyo was already a shoe-in for a good rating. But the sheer level of unapologetic animusk is really something else. This smells simultaneously dirty and clean, fresh and dank, bitter and sweet. This is love.

    11th July, 2011

    Shifty Bat's avatar

    United States United States

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    Wall Street by Victor

    Wall Street smells to me like Bulgari Pour Homme Extreme with more notes. The fact that I acquired both blindly within two weeks of each other is uncanny. The fact they have identically poor longevity is eerie. Wall Street features that same sort of ivy/tea scent that dominates the Bulgari offering but it's smokier, spicier, mustier...like it belongs in a low-lit drawing room. It's such a strange juxtaposition of old money and fresh vigor that despite being a product of the 80's I can't call it dated. I enjoy this, and if it performed a little better I'd consider tossing my bottle of Bulgari. But hey, maybe they'll layer well.
    In redux - considering their similar structures and performances, if Bulgari Pour Homme Extreme is a silver rum, Wall Street is a gold. Make sense?

    11th July, 2011

    Shifty Bat's avatar

    United States United States

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    Antaeus by Chanel

    It's so seldom I am stunned by a fragrance. I appreciate most, I am surprised by a few, and by the fingers on my own two hands I can count the fragrances that made me stop what I was doing at the time.
    I will preface this passage of praise by first agreeing with everything said here by Rhomboid before me, save the 40+ bit.
    I however was struck with the uniqueness of antaeus's ability to make a minty accord out of beeswax and sage (this is what I assume is causing this). I love sage, but it's hard to balance its sharp, dry character, and this is a prime example of a job well done. In addition, this juice has an oud-like syrupy-sweet body, like a precursor to M7, but it keeps my interest for longer. This is the missing link I'd been wondering about that ties styrax-driven frags like Burberry's #2 and Passion for Men to modern seducers like M7 and Body Kouros. Frankly, as far as sensory perception and stimulation go, I'd call Antaeus amazing.

    11th July, 2011

    Oh_Hedgehog's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    parfums*PARFUMS Series 3 Incense: Ouarzazate by Comme des Garçons

    Distinguished to extinguished in 3 hours flat. Ouarzazate is a spicy-leather that only really qualifies as an incense fragrance upon drydown. Before then, it’s all pepper, sage and nutmeg against a woodland backdrop. The black pepper is the star attraction here, and provokes a zesty, lemony frisson in the topnotes, before carrying off an uncanny impersonation of worn-out leather (Piper nigrum, black pepper oil, is used to the same effect in Gorilla Perfume’s Exhale). Ouarzazate has a strong kinetic impression to it, one of being smoothed over as it evolves, and it feels warmed, as if an invisible hand is rubbing you vigorously all the while.

    11th July, 2011

    Buysblind's avatar

    United States United States

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    Perceive for Men by Avon

    Not bad considering the price. Perceive opens well with some lemons and vanilla and soon moves into the drydown where you can pick up on the mint, cedar and sage. It's a little clumsy at times and there's a very synthetic muskiness lurking beneath, however, in general, it's a fairly smooth, woodsy fragrance with some sweetness and powder. The drydown reminds me very much of a quieter, more subdued Iceberg Twice. Projection is good and longevity is about 2 to 3 hours.A good choice if you like the notes and aren't looking to spend more than 15 dollars. While I gave it a neutral rating, it's a neutral leaning toward a thumbs up.

    11th July, 2011

    Galvatron77's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    Kenzo pour Homme by Kenzo

    This is my first Kenzo , and I just fell in love ... KPH is sophisticated , dry , fresh and unique. Placing my top 5 ranking.
    There is something in the background that reminds me Cacharel Pour homme , and I love it !
    Thumbs Up for Kenzo !!!

    11th July, 2011

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Sergio Tacchini Sport Extreme by Sergio Tacchini

    A fresh spicy fougere a lot citrusy and alcoholic, a bit too synthetic and with an aromatic mentholated undertone of notes as mint, basil, verbena and thyme. It's detectable the prickly effect of pepper and the after taste of pencil (as RobX writes). I smell, but i don't know if are listed, cedar and geranium. Boring and common.

    11th July, 2011

    Nancy Lancaster's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tom of Finland by Etat Libre d'Orange

    I have to agree with most of the reviews here - It's a very pleasant fragrance, soft, slightly sweet, warm, kind. I agree with the review that said it's a perfume for men. Trying it on for the first time today I had expected more of the leather/macho vibe but I really feel this is more of a sweet almost (almost!) feminine fragrance that has been dialed down by omitting florals and it's the edit thereof that makes it masculine. I get the leather/suede but its so soft - I don't get the "bull-whip". I am tempted - just - to say this is a Calvin Klein Obsession for Men 21st Century rather than 1986. It's not the in your face like the 80's were - it's scaled way way back. Knowing a few leatherbears myself I would say this absolutely wouldn't fly at a leather bar. Ballet flats are a much safer bet than TOF at the Eagle beer bust.

    The fragrance is long lasting. Someone here said something about coconut and I smell none of that but it does have a warm beachy smell to me - not aquatic but sand and suede. It''s sophistication lies in it's editing.

    11th July, 2011

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Lavender (new) by Crabtree & Evelyn

    Lavender + violet, tonka bean, musk

    Do not be misinformed by sales associates -- this is not simply a repackaging of the old reliable Lavender Water (1970); rather, it is a reformulation. The old LW was simple but delightful. It accurately conveyed a very realistic herbal lavender.
    This is something different, and in my opinion it is far less interesting. The opening notes suggest that the same lavender oils continue to be used. Very quickly though, the scent becomes much softer and rounder than the previous version. The lavender becomes sidelined by hints of violet flowers and a light musk. What results is a pleasant, subtle, "second-skin" type of fragrance. It is not heavily sweet nor excessively floral.
    Some may like this, but I mourn the loss of the previous version, which had a natural vitality and a bracing austerity. This does not.

    11th July, 2011

    wardamoose's avatar



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    Drakkar Noir by Guy Laroche

    I always scoffed at Drakkar Noir because, honestly... forgive me but I had a vendetta against colognes that are for sale at Wal-Mart. I had this superiority complex because I wore Creed. Let me tell you what though, Drakkar Noir (when sprayed on my neck) is absolutely one of the best smells I have experienced. It is warm and dark, it is comforting and soothing, it is amazing. Love it. It is now one of my top three favorites. I decided to not buy Duc de Vervins (one of my "to try" colognes) for Drakkar, and I don't regret that decision at all. Thanks Wal-Mart

    11th July, 2011

    blueyezz's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Cuir de Russie by Chanel

    I’ve got the 15ml parfum along with a tester of the EDT.

    CdR smells equestrian to me - elite, decadent, burled wood, artisanal saddles socked with sweat, manure. All in a paddock surrounded by flowers. Magnificent. I bet Hermes wished they’d made this.

    The parfum is richer, more heady, it amps up the old-world eroticism by walking the fine line between refinement and brutality. The edt is more aldehylic, thinner, more modern and immediate. Still great though.

    Suitable for men and women. Ideally the wearer will be aquiline, haughty, probably loaded, possibily slightly cruel. I’m none of those things, but I love it and I’m going to wear it. It doesn't really "fit" my lifestyle - I'm too ordinary, but this is the stuff of dreams, and I when I wear it I dream about The Ballet Russes, polished samovars and dangerous Cossacks with leather riding boots.

    Wears very close to the skin and doesn't last long, so a VERY expensive luxury. I don't regret it at all. I was going to get Bandit. This is twice the price but I enjoy it twice as much.

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 18th July, 2011)

    miss mills's avatar

    New Zealand New Zealand

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    Calvin Klein Beauty by Calvin Klein

    I've just come into a bottle of Beauty and have been wearing it to work (I'm a nurse) - it's perfect for work, non-intrusive, soft, subtle and not a gutsy floriental like the perfumes I usually prefer to wear (but not to work where people are already ill and don't need to feel worse because of my overbearing scents).
    That the marketing aims to target 40yr plus women in a youth obsessed world is not the smartest move CK ever made - I suspect it will turn off a lot of women regardless of age. The marketing angle made me feel a little frumpy even though I read the blurb after I'd tried and declared Beauty good. Despite that, it's a warm, harmless fragrance, and I do like it a lot - it doesn't have the lingering sting that would make it a favourite for me but it is definitely beautiful in its own way.

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 20th July, 2011)

    alfarom's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    02 Owari by Odin New York

    Owari's opening is really wonderfull and its evolution is exactly like a firework. It explodes in the sky with a spectacular effect that's very efemeral and turns rapidly into ashes.

    An incredibly realistic and slighly bitter/green mandarin/citruses opening, turning into a bergamot/neroli middle phase to then turn again into a disappointing, and absolutely generic woody-musky drydown. The main problem with Odin's fragrances is that they clearly smell designer while they sell at niche's prices. I'm wondering why someone should by them...

    Overall Owari is a barely nice fragrance.

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 05th August, 2011)

    bebang's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Jicky by Guerlain

    For me this is as close you get to the Nirvana of fragrances - it simply does not get better than that. It will morph in your skin, in your moods, to me Jicky is where it all begins.
    Jicky never smells the same and the scent does not last; you get the magic note for a minute or so and then, like a kite, it's gone.

    PS. I wish Guerlain did not package Jicky ODP and ODT in that hideous refill and Habit de Fete gilded platic type 'armour' - it's serious bad design and looks good only from the distance. Jicky deserves better!

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 28th August, 2011)

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Bora Bora for Men by Liz Claiborne

    Bora bora is the kind of scent that is nice to wear at morning, an hot summer morning, while roaming by an air conditioned car for the streets of Caracas or Salvador de Bahia. This is an exotic fruity ozonic bit airy and a touch green with the depth of tasty fruits of kiwi, quince and delicious fig and with a final gingery, woodsy and bit airy dry down. A floral note of hybiscus provides a touch of tropical exoticism and sophistication. The final wake is fresh, fruity, boise and powdery. A very pleasant easy scent for an easy life.

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 06th September, 2012)

    Shifty Bat's avatar

    United States United States

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    Kanøn by Kanon

    When they say Tom Ford was trying to make Gucci Pour Homme a throwback to decades past I know he's tried this. It's a pretty straightforward and utterly enjoyable cedar-citrus-and barbershop powder scent, like pouring a little Canoe into Gucci I (minus Gucci's spice array). Soft, unassuming, suitable for a gentleman and just really nice.

    Edit: The new version of this, which is fantastically cheap, opens with a sweaty, salty, sour blast of green from a blend of bitter oakmoss, a rather damp-smelling patchouli (as would be found in Salvador Dali Pour Homme), and likely a touch of wormwood. It makes me think of 'cumin without using cumin,' and also brings to mind what Yatagan by Caron might be if it was a dewey Irish hillside at morning instead of a crisp desert, if that makes any sense. This effect tones down considerably over the first twenty minutes but remains throughout. I'm willing to bet the notes are entirely the same in vintage and current forms but the ingredients used just have slightly different qualities to them. The original is softer yet more consistently radiant, and a little more powdery and affable; the newer is sharper and more confident, and seems to have ditched the classic barber-y orris root. Wearing both on either hand I feel it's like a man aging in reverse going from old to new. Either way I think both Kanons are swell and don't feel I have a strong preference between the two. Maybe I'll try wearing them layered some day.

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 30th January, 2014)

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Absolu by Rochas

    Decidedly feminine, balmy, rich and elegant creation with similarities with Jean Paul Classique (from the same nose Cavallier and which with Absolu shares some floral notes, the neroli accord with orange blossom, rose, musk, vanilla and woody amber) and  Moschino couture which with shares some fruity-floral elements even if in a different way of consistence and intensity. While Moschino is clearly more airy, light and fruity-floral, Absolu is more rich and resinous with a more evident foundation on creamy and mellow final notes as vanilla, smokey amber, benzoin and balms. Many detect similarities with Le baisser du Dragon because of the common influence of neroli, cedar and benzoin considering that the note of bitter almond could play the same creamy-tasty role played by fig leaves in Absolu; i don't detect this connection because the Cartier's one is more dry, incensey, bitter-rooty and decidedly less balmy, smokey, dark and creamy than this one. The initial lush link of orange and fig is the intoxicating fruity welcome of the first Absolu's blast and it's really pleasant and almost edible before the scent becomes intensily floral with the feminine explosion of a bunch of nocturnal lily, neroli and rose. This phase lasts few time because the smell slides soon in a sort of balmy and   mellow base that reminds me a bit the one of Amarige (milky vanilla, smokey amber, dry fruits and sandalwood, musk). The dry down is a shadow of smokey franckincense, animalic, slightly bitter-orangy and musky amber, vanillic balm with the undertones of toasted dry fruits. On my skin i detect a smokey-peppery-spicy (may be cinnamon or nuttmeg) sultriness that renders the fragrance as a seductive and mysterious concoction with a long wake though a faint level of persistence. A pleasant solution for a touch of sensuousness for a night out.

    11th July, 2011 (Last Edited: 22nd May, 2014)

    Grottola's avatar

    United States United States

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    Bel Ami by Hermès

    This review is for the vintage Bel Ami in the vase-looking bottle.

    The vintage formulation of Bel Ami is one of the best masculines ever, period. Bel Ami is a chypre by smell - not so much structure, but it definitely has a chypre feel. No bother, as it's done flawlessly and I guess could in a sense be called "MItsouko Pour Homme".

    However, another thing I have to add is that the vintage Bel Ami is extraordinarily close to Patou Pour Homme. Now, Patou Pour Homme is richer and denser with an oriental character, but they both share a spicy leather chypre smell, which is essentially the central accord to Patou Pour Homme. Seeing as how Patou Pour Homme is probably the most perfect masculine in existence, I could roll with Bel Ami as a replacement so I don't have to take out a loan to buy the last drops on Earth of Patou Pour Homme.

    I haven't tried the current formulation yet, but the vintage version is something I'd definitely recommend for anyone interested in classic masculines or chypres.

    Love it.

    12th July, 2011

    Grottola's avatar

    United States United States

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    New York by Nicolaï

    Ah, the coveted New York by Patricia de Nicolaï. For a niche fragrance, this one seems to have quite the cult following and a reputation preceding it - Luca Turin even admitted to having worn it for ten years, which is quite a feat for perfumisto's and perfumista's always searching for their "Holy Grail". So, does New York really live up to the reputation? Not for me.

    The good: New York is pleasant and pretty, simply put. If you're a fan of the long-gone Ungaro II, but can't find it (or you don't like the civet note), then New York makes a fantastic alternative. It's rich, refined, and noticeably well-made with good materials; the powdery, ambery orange and peppery pimento, when combined, are smooth like a creamsicle. Unique but still civilized.

    The bad: The "civilized" part is perhaps where New York's downfall is, for me. It's nice but it's not fun or free. It's too damn stuffy for me, very formal. I'm reminded also of Tiffany for Men, which is about as powdery as I can tolerate a fragrance. There's no doubt that New York is refined but it feels watered down and lacking in character, like something unfinished. The longevity of New York is good (the city itself will be around until the end of the world, I know that much), but the sillage is lacking - New York is very much a skin scent on me.

    The ugly: I don't really find there to be anything ugly about New York, despite its flaws.

    Bottom line: Despite New York not working for me, I'd still say try it, given the hype. It may very well work for you, but it doesn't for me. The closest fragrances I would compare New York to are Ungaro II, Tiffany for Men, Minotaure by Paloma Picasso, and Heritage by Guerlain. I don't really see as many similarities between this on Bois du Portugal, which I find stronger, more masculine, and less powdery. Nevertheless, New York is a quality fragrance that would probably smell great on someone else but it's not something I'd wear. Don't blind buy it, either.

    12th July, 2011

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Cuir / Cuir de Russie by Piver

    Well, I don't get a birch note and I don't get a leather note.
    What I do get is a very -- very -- sweet, powdery fragrance. Aromatic at first, develops a tinny/metallic twang.
    Certainly does not ring my chimes.
    This is the vintage version: Cuir de Russie.

    12th July, 2011

    Diamondflame's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    Incensi by Lorenzo Villoresi

    Judging from the listed notes alone, I'd have expected to find INCENSI enjoyable. Wearing it however tells me a different story. What started off rather attractively as dry bitter galbanum quickly turned into a weirdly unpleasant concoction that conjured up the image of a sweat-drenched laborer hauling fish at the fishery. Repeated wearings failed to improve matters. I'm inclined to blame it on the styrax & cumin as the 'combo from hell' that sends me reeling with a one-two punch.

    The shock is thankfully, transient, with the fragrance settling down to a more palatable blend of dry resins and salty leather. Unfortunately for me, the smelly fish dude still haunts my memories long after the drydown is gone.

    Notes:
    pepper, cumin, cardamom, cinnamon, elemi, galbanum, cinnamon, labdanum, ginger, incense, benzoin, myrrh, styrax, frankincense, tolu.

    12th July, 2011

    fgamz's avatar



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    Hypnotic Poison Eau Sensuelle by Christian Dior

    i didnt like the original hypnotic poison at all, i thought it was so bad i just wanted to wash my skin with bleach when i got home, i am a massive fan of florals though, and when i read the notes for this one i had to go test it out..

    LOVED the top notes, simply loved loved loved them.. Ylang ylang and orange blossom soo lovely it wasnt sickly sweet but a very crisp clean sweet, middle notes were just soo fresh but still florally sweet if that makes sense, nothing like the fruit salad that HP had it smelt nothing like the original until the base notes hit, very creamy, can smell the musk not so much sandalwood but more vanilla but thats on my skin, everyone experiments differently but i honestly dont mind this scent at all.

    Its not at all a "sexual" perfume, as its not so seductive?? i guess.. its just a very elegant and classy kind of smell.. I wouldnt use this to attract my husband to bed, but more of a daytime wear for work or lunch with friends..

    Its not a bad perfume at all, i really like the top and middle notes, not so pleased with the musk base note but dont mind the vanilla smell, but i still love the top notes, i would def buy it for cold winter days..

    The bottle is so sexy, and the face of this perfume is the beautiful monica bellucci, who is very sexy, indeed one of my idols, i think they meant this to be sexy but its just very neutral IMO.

    12th July, 2011

    aeracura's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    Tomato by Demeter Fragrance Library

    It's absolutely gorgeous, I get a lot of comments when I wear it and yet it's not at all over powering. It's just so WEARABLE :)

    The tomato leaves and vine are what you first notice, and it dries down to a gorgeous fruity undertone... not citrus like or at all acidic, more powdery or peach like but still very green...

    Gorgeous day time fragrance!

    12th July, 2011

    aeracura's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    GapBody Coconut Tuberose by Gap

    Wow what a delight this fragrance is... It is Lush and tropical and fruity and feminine.... The tuberose is definitely more dominant than the coconut and it is simply gorgeous.... it has real lasting power too and doesn't fade, the dry down is just as delicious and not so very different from when you first spritz it on, only perhaps that the coconut is a little more evident a couple of hours after putting it on...

    12th July, 2011

    aeracura's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    Gucci Flora by Gucci

    Obviously skin chemistry plays a vital role in the evolution of this fragrance but I must say it's beautiful on me. I was bewitched when I first encountered it on a friend and HAD TO HAVE IT... however, I have smelled it on another friend and I just didn't like it, couldn't believe it was the same fragrance. Someone above mentioned that it was not at all floral, whereas I would describe it as an incredibly floral perfume that remains floral well into the dry down and a little bit of a musky/powdery fragrance emerges and sits nicely with the floral... I can detect the rose and peony quite strongly but that's fine, because I love both of those :)

    12th July, 2011

    funhuntr's avatar

    Philippine Philippine

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    Essential Sport by Lacoste

    Quite surprised with this one, as I normally don't have high hopes for Sport fragrances (BN - induced snobbery perhaps) with the exception of Lanvin L'Homme Sport.

    Anyways, what struck me most about this is how resilient it was, it's sillage and longevity are above average, which is already a surprise coming from this house. Yes, it's kinda generic, yes, that fresh accord has been done before, but Essential Sport's freshness has a zing and a tenacity that's quite pleasant -- like a charming douchebag friend that exists in every clique.

    12th July, 2011

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