Fragrance Reviews from August 2011

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    jtd's avatar

    United States United States

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    Magie Noire by Lancôme

    From reading about the evolution of Magie Noire from 1978 until 2011, I think that it has always been a grab-bag of a perfume. Early versions sound like they emphasized different facets than this most recent one. It sounds like they used to bridge the dark floral chypre to the spicy oriental via some old-school animalics.

    While I like it, I’d have to categorize the current version as a tight-assed woody floral. Not a lot of amber, not a lot of moss. Civet? Castoreum? Nowhere to be found. But you know, some days a tight-assed floral is just the right thing. And as many before me here have noted and per my own equation that men’s fragrance = (women’s fragrance – the interesting parts ) x 0.75, Magie Noire is an ideal men’s fragrance.

    05 August, 2011 (Last Edited: 14 August, 2011)

    alfarom's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Lauder for Men by Estée Lauder

    Lauder Fer Men sits somewhere between a spicy fougere and a citric chypre. At a first sniff it could be easily dismissed as its classic structure may brings to mind of many fragrances of the same genre/period, but if you go deeper you'll discover an outstanding composition that, through the usual chrisms of the 80's powerhose style, is able to create its own language made of floral patterns, green notes and slight animalic nuances. An overall aromatic aspect is clearly reamrkable throughout the fragrance evolution and reaches the top of its relevance when the green tobacco note starts to play. 



    Overall Lauder for Men is a fragrance that moves in two different territories for several aspects: It's strong and bold as an 80's powerhouse but at the same time takes the distance from the most typical compositions of the genre by introducing a few feminine elements in its structure (manily the florals). It settles halfaway between the american masculine style and the european taste (vanilla in the base). It's classified (and to me also smells) as a spicy fougere but it also has many characteristic of a chypre. A great composition.



    Be careful with dosage as Lauder For Men can easily turn into Louder For Men.


    05 August, 2011 (Last Edited: 13 February, 2012)

    barclaydetolly's avatar

    United States United States

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    Sécrétions Magnifiques by Etat Libre d'Orange

    It's disgusting and vile, and its sole purpose is to get people talking about ELdO. As a gimmick, Secretions Magnifiques succeeds nicely.

    Simply put, metallic blood, milk, and bleachy semen is not what I wish to smell like.

    Secretions Magnifiques is also a near flawless pretentiousness detector. You should avoid anyone who refers to this as a work of art or a conceptual statement. It's marketing, pure and simple, and obviously has worked.

    05 August, 2011 (Last Edited: 20th June, 2012)

    jimmysmellworld's avatar



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    Xeryus Rouge by Givenchy

    To me this smells like an 80's powerhouse fragrance which has been drowned in some bizarre and exotic fruity concoction. I can see the similarity between this and the vile 'joop!' but don't let that put you off; this is in another galaxy, far far away. Its a fantastic and original fragrance. Like a lot of daring fragrances of this kind its important not to judge this by the initial spray, its needs about an hour so settle down where the initial overpowering and synthetic smell settles down into a beautiful, sweet and slightly spicy aroma. This lasts longer than A*Men on my skin so you're looking at around 18 hours for this one and my skin does not hold scent well.

    This fragrance suits any time of year but I think it works best during the colder months as in the summer heat it maybe a bit cloying.

    I'd wear this for in a clubbing environment as it would stand out and last you all night though i'd strongly advise that you use 2 spays maximum or this would have the opposite of the desired effect. Less is more with this one.

    06 August, 2011

    Gekisen's avatar

    United States United States

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    Essential by Lacoste

    I tried this out after all the reviews. It smelled very fresh, clean and grassy on the test strip but smelled very acrid as the tomato leaf accord was way over-pronounced. Perhaps it just doesn't work well on my skin...

    06 August, 2011

    Francop's avatar

    Spain Spain

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    Sybaris by Antonio Puig

    Gorgeous powerful aromatic green oriental fougere that I wore for at least 3 years in the late 80`s and early 90`s. I remember having the entire line: soap, shower gel, shaving foam, after shave balm, deodorant spray and EDT in dab and spray forms...waking up in the morning was a pleasure knowing that the ritual of Sybaris was about to take place...

    I do not think that I can add much more to Off-scenter`s review but confirming that Sybaris is an example of the great and famous frags from the 80`s...masculinity in liquid form...

    Big thumbs up...!!!

    06 August, 2011

    Mapletop's avatar

    United States United States

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    Vintage by John Varvatos

    I realy love this fragrance and I don't say that often. I have to agree with the other basenoters that said this fragrance is romantic and masculine. At first sniff I thought that it had fig or a date fruit note even though the pyramid does not include those. Others have mentioned that this fragrance is weak or does not last long. I have to disagree as the fragrance evolves quickly. The drydown is amazing, suede, tobacco.

    06 August, 2011

    PerfumeCollector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Van Cleef & Arpels pour Homme by Van Cleef & Arpels

    This is an excellent fragrance, a powerhouse without a doubt, and with as much, if not more, attitude than Quorum and Lapidus pH.
    This is a perfume for manly men, not for wimps.
    It reminds me many other powerhouses, but it combines the best of each in one truly magnificent fragrance. The coniferous accord of Krizia Uomo, the rose of Ungaro III, the opening of Quorum, the "on your face" attitude of Lapidus pH, the complexity of One Man Show (Fendi Uomo, Azzaro pH, etc.) so why having all those (and more) if you can have it all in just one fragrance
    Is this my Holy Grail?
    It well may be, I liked it from the get go and went right to my top 5 list

    06 August, 2011

    ubergeek's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Tempest by Avon

    Wonderful 1990's aquatic from Avon. Bergamot and ozone topnotes dry down to a rose and jasmine middle and a sharp cedar and patchouli base. Great casual scent for a summer day. Funky spiral bottle.

    Sadly, it's a discontinued fragrance that's getting increasingly difficult to find.

    06 August, 2011

    ChoppedGarlic's avatar

    Greece Greece

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    Tobacco Vanille by Tom Ford

    Easiest review ever, because, as others have already said, it's exactly what it says on the box: a sweet vanillic tobacco. Opens way too loud and crass, like it's trying its hardest to impress but mellows down rather quickly to a scent that feels just right. Not much evolution or complexity. Hard to think that many people could find it disagreeable though. Fairly versatile too imo, can be used anytime, anywhere with some moderation.

    A comparison can be made with Kilian's Back to Black since they have a lot of similarities. BtB has better quality ingredients and is much more complex HOWEVER it leans closer to the "feminine" side of the spectrum imo and can have some longevity issues. TV on the hand is simpler, unisex and has very good longevity and is overall the "easy" choice.

    06 August, 2011

    alderhill's avatar



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    L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme by Guerlain

    I like this scent but it frustrates me. I bought it blind off, so I guess I can't really complain... I read reviews and it had been compared favourably to other scents I enjoy, so I decided to take the risk. Buyers beware!

    It is undeniably pleasant, a cocoa-dusted warm sweetness, a citrusy blast at first, but that soon fades... the drydown is inviting, woody, elegant but just too elusive.

    The problem for me is that overall I find it quite flat and (though not exactly one-dimensional) it doesn't seem to change very much over the course of its visit on my skin. As well, it just doesn't last. After an hour, I can't detect it unless I push my nose into where I've sprayed it earlier and then it's still faint. I don't mind scents that aren't choking everyone else in the room, but I myself forget it's even there! Could be that it's turning "invisible" to me and I do know it's there if very lightly, but I generally have a sensitive nose and this disappearing problem I noticed on the first few days when the scent was still new to me. Frustrating.

    I have a 125ml bottle for 3 months now and it's already 3/4 gone, because I have to apply liberally to get anything out of it, and I'm not even that entranced by it! Sheesh.

    I wondered if it was maybe a defective bottle, but the seller was reputable and the bottle is legit. I tried some l'Instant from a store's sampler, and it was the same problem. Maybe others have better luck with it.

    I do enjoy the scent, I just wish there were more going on, more dimensions, and that it had better longevity. Just keep that in mind if you're buying blind. I won't buy it again, but others might better luck.

    06 August, 2011

    OmerPervaiz's avatar

    Pakistan Pakistan

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    Terre d'Hermès by Hermès

    Truly an amazing fragrance that evolves and evolves. It satarts with the woody/citrus notes then evolves into bitter orange fragrances later it changes into dark spicy fragrance that lasts quite a while then finally it dries down into light/citrus/spicy fragrance, though i didn't like the dry down it is not well composed and doesn't with the top and heart notes it's a drawback of this highly renowned perfume. A great play of different notes in the fragrance. Sillage and longevity is moderate. highly recommended for real gentlemen. Great bottle too!!!
    I give it 9 out of 10. SUPERB

    06 August, 2011

    jimmysmellworld's avatar



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    Aqua pour Homme by Bulgari

    If your looking for a well made aquatic then this has to be on your try/buy list. Its very well constructed to the extent that it really does smell like the the salty, deep blue atlantic. Its not a sweet, club friendly fragrance like ADG, its more mature, individual and classy with a slightly rugged dirty vibe. I've nearly finished my 100ml as its one of my most used fragrances during the summer days, though its not so much of a romantic night wear fragrance. I love the blue pebble shaped bottle too.

    I'd wear this fragrance during the hot summer days

    Its more suited to day office/work wear.

    Longevity is good for an aquatic.

    also, avoid its marine flanker as its not as good.

    06 August, 2011

    jimmysmellworld's avatar



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    Black Orchid by Tom Ford

    From a male perspective I think that this maybe a bit too feminine to wear unless you want to be VERY daring. The smell its self is pleasant, powdery and very very strong to the extent that projection could actually be measured in miles. Its very 'Tom Ford' and would be more suited to an 80's supermodel as opposed to myself. To wear this I recommend you spraying it in front of you and walking into the mist, an hour before you leave your place and that applies to both men and women.

    06 August, 2011

    jimmysmellworld's avatar



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    A*Men / Angel Men by Thierry Mugler

    Im giving this fragrance a thumbs up for the sheer audacity of it. fragrances like these are always going to divide opinion but if you're a collector its a definite must buy. There is not much that I can really say about this that has not been said in the countless review below but i've found that this fragrance can go two ways; over apply and your effectively walking around in a loud, bright pink Hawaiian shirt while one spray which has dried down will smell great, to me its that simple. Use with caution and you along with the others around you will enjoy. Im desperate to try out its flankers.

    I wouldn't go near this fragrance in warmer weather.

    I'd only wear this for evening wear bar/date/club.

    longevity is similar to that of a tattoo.

    06 August, 2011

    Orpheus99's avatar

    United States United States

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    Dzing! by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    As I always do before I test a sample, I read through the reviews so I have some idea what to expect. There were a lot of words that jumped out at me such as "circus" and "fecal". Now feces is not something you want to throw around, be it a term or otherwise, and I certainly don't want it on me in fragrance form.

    So it was with great trepidation that I decided to give Dzing! a try. I sprayed it on, closed my eyes, and took a sniff. Surprise. It smelled great. Powdery, sweet, warm, spicy, with a hint of something...leather. This is very similar to Bulgari Black; replace the rubber note with leather, and add a little spice. I really like Bulgari Black. I like this even more.

    So far, so good. However, I just knew it was a matter of time before the feces reared its head. It had to be here, otherwise it wouldn't have been mentioned in other reviews. Well, several hours later, it started to fade down into a lighter version of the start. No circus here. No fecal anything. Maybe I am missing something, and if I am, so be it. I like this one a lot. Good longevity, good smell. A+

    06 August, 2011

    Orpheus99's avatar

    United States United States

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    Voleur de Roses by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    The only other rose based fragrance I have tried is Amouage Lyric Man. Compared to that one, I found the rose in this to be quite a bit brighter. And it's full on rose. I like this one better than Lyric, but unfortunately I only got a couple of hours out of it before it faded into oblivion. This is not a bad fragrance, but I would rather smell this on a woman.

    06 August, 2011

    Mar Azul's avatar

    Bulgaria Bulgaria

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    parfums*PARFUMS Guerrilla 1 by Comme des Garçons

    A spicy-floral-fruity fleshy concoction not unlike Tom Ford's Black Orchid but plasticized, like the interior decoration of a fine boutique: plastic, rubber and aluminium. This synthetic finish makes it more hip and less sexy, as is in fact the case with all CdG fragrances. Yet no one can civilize champaca at 100%. Me, I'm a sucker for the raw seductiveness of this flower. As close to animalic as any CdG fragrance can ever get.

    06 August, 2011

    Orpheus99's avatar

    United States United States

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    Chèvrefeuille Original by Creed

    This is a lovely light citrus/floral. Good projection, good longevity. Not a feminine floral, this is decidedly gender neutral. I was impressed with the 6+ hours I got out of this considering it's a citrus scent. The projection stays high throught. The only negative is that toward the end, this one started to go sour and pungent. Takes a long time to get to this point however, so its a minor negative. B+

    06 August, 2011

    Francop's avatar

    Spain Spain

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    Loud for Her by Tommy Hilfiger

    Generic and harmless...

    Next please...

    06 August, 2011

    sherapop's avatar

    United States United States

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    Oriens by Van Cleef & Arpels

    Van Cleef & Arpels ORIENS is a big sillage sweet patchouli perfume. I'd say that the single word that best describes this composition is: voluptuous. A little goes a long way, and my distinct impression is that this perfume (edp) is much louder than the wearer may appreciate. When I wore this to bed the other night I was floating on a big billowy cloud of sweet and chewy patchouli leaves and ended up having--perhaps not coincidentally--truly fantastical dreams!

    This sort of composition, ushered in by ANGEL, and aesthetically similar to Bond no 9 NUITS DE NOHO and Tom Ford BLACK ORCHID VOILE DE FLEUR, to name but two examples familiar to me, may be the twenty-first century analogue to some of the larger volume "comfort scents" of the past century, including TRESOR, AMARIGE, and CASHMIR. The sweet patchouli fad may eventually pass to the point where people chuckle when they recall these newer compositions, but for now they serve very much the same purpose as those earlier sweet perfumes, it seems to me.

    ORIENS creates a blanket-like layer all around the body. I cannot really imagine wearing this perfume in public, but at home it feels like a piece of self-indulgence, like a rich, sweet truffle--something that one would not eat every day but is a nice treat now and then. My 100ml edp will definitely never need to be replaced--not because I don't like it, but because it is incredibly strong and appropriate only to intimate settings.

    The ORIENS bottle is a case study in excess. First off, this one--to my amazement--has roundly defeated the SJP COVET bottle in the "best suited as an implement of self-defense" category. This one is shaped like a palm-sized crystal ball, and it must weigh more than a pound. While the COVET bottle could be use to fend off a nocturnal intruder by knocking him out, the ORIENS bottle might actually crush his skull.

    I really find this bottle attractive except for the silver-painted plastic leaves appended to the otherwise beautiful cap atop the crystal ball. Someone should have said "Stop!" because the leaves are simply over the top, like a bad hat with not only flowers but stuffed birds attached. I wish that I could remove the kitschy leaves, because they really degrade the overall presentation. Maybe I'll hide the cap in a drawer, since the bottle itself needs to rest on my bedside table--just in case.

    06 August, 2011

    SmellyNinja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Aventus by Creed

    I'll admit I'm not a Creed Kool-Aid drinker. Something about many of their scents I either find off-putting, and the ones I do like are just too mature for me. But although it took a little time, this is the one that finally made me a fan. So much so that I actually ponied up for a bottle.

    Some have commented on Aventus resembling Virgin Island Water. In spirit, I suppose. It's a well crafted, sweet, summer scent, but beyond that the two are nothing alike. Aventus is far more mature, powerful and rich, though it's sweetness gives it just enough of a playful side that the right guy under 40 could pull it off.

    This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

    06 August, 2011

    KillerScent's avatar



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    Must de Cartier pour Homme by Cartier

    Many people say Kouros to smell like dirty underwear .Have you smelled this? All my friends have the same opinion : dirty dirty underpants . I can't remember whether the version I tried was this or the concentrated one . I like it .Weird scent .Strrong.

    06 August, 2011

    PerfumeCollector's avatar

    United States United States

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    Lomani by Lomani

    I bought Lomani blind because it was so cheap I couldn't have bought a hamburger and a coke with what I spent on it. I was not expecting anything, maybe an Aqua Velve or Skin Bracer lookalike but never the gorgeous scent that came out the sprayer.
    My first impression was: They put Drakkar Noir in the wrong bottle!!!, but after just a few minutes I could start feeling the difference, it is smoother than DN, not better, but not worse either, just slightly different. As it progressed in development I could appreciate the widening difference with DN, and it reminded me a lot of other scents from the 80's, fragrances that cost 5 times what Lomani costs. The quality of the components is obvious, and the construction of the perfume is also flawless.
    The problem with Lomani is that it is indistinguishable to many other perfumes, Drakkar Noir , Quorum, Lapidus, Fendi uomo, Azzaro pH, etc., each has a special character that defines each as unique and special. Lomani on the other hando could be any of them, or all of them, with nothing that sepates it from the herd, and maybe it is a virtue, but probably that is what hurts Lomani and never will be a star like all the others I mentioned.
    Regardless, it is a first class perfume for peanuts, maybe the best bargain of them all, it should be in everybody's wardrobe and it gets my most enthusiastic thumbs up.

    06 August, 2011

    KillerScent's avatar



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    Blu Mediterraneo Capri Orange / Arancia Di Capri by Acqua di Parma

    What a waste of money .And the worst thing is that this is EXPENSIVE
    Yes, at first splash you get a great orange/mandarin hit ... and no more .After an hour you smell nothing .
    This fragrance has one of the POOREST LONGEVITY I have tested .And the same to the projection : absent .
    If you want to smell good orange fragrances try Hermés

    06 August, 2011

    suburbanites's avatar

    United States United States

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    Coriolan by Guerlain

    I've been a fan of this for over 10 years, and was beside myself when it was discontinued (seeking any available stock to hoard so that I'd still have it). I still have 2 half-empty 1.0 oz atomizers and just got my hands on a 100ml recently. Coriolan is elegant, bold, and dries into a wonderful combination of oak moss and patchouli that dries and lingers on the skin without cloying. Longevity on this is excellent for something of EdT strength, and I've never lacked for compliments upon its wearing. Not to mention the thought put into just the bottle design was daring, and it's simply nice to uncap a fragrance and not need to place a cap down and back on.

    Sadly, I'm disappointed both that they've discontinued this wonderful scent, but that they've reincarnated it with some differences in L'Ame du Heroes (which is far less available, and to my nose, just more a feminine scent), leaving only Heritage and Vetiver as Guerlains in my collection. If you can simply find a sample, do so. The citrus top transforms quickly into a wonderful chypre worth experiencing.

    06 August, 2011

    Orpheus99's avatar

    United States United States

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    Black Diamond by Canali

    I really like this one. Has a lot going on. There are lots of notes you can pick out if you try, but my main impression is: sweet, floral, fruity, bright, and yet still somewhat masculine in character. Perhaps it's the leather and/or woods that keep it from tipping into feminine territory. Unlike the other Canali scents I have tried, this one has good projection and longevity. I think it would be easy to overdo this one, since it is a jump out and grab you type fragrance. This one struck the right chords with me, however if you are sweet averse, you might want to steer clear of Black Diamond. Grade: A

    06 August, 2011

    Mapletop's avatar

    United States United States

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    Black Jeans by Versace

    Black Jeans opens with an ambient fiz. What I like about this one is the bitterness it has. Almost like birch ta, which I think is the geranium . It reminds me of how creosote smells on a hot day. Its fresh, slightly bitter, and tarry. Thumbs up

    06 August, 2011

    Oproust's avatar

    United States United States

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    Animale Animale for Men by Animale Parfums

    I'm not sure why I passed this one by over the years. I'm glad I've found it. Animale Animale is a gourmand I really enjoy. The fruity/chocolate/mossy top and mid notes in Animale Animale are very appealing. While fragrances like Animale Animale can be cloying and even intimidating (A*Men, for example), I find this one to have just the right blend of sweet and dry accords. The chocolate, vanilla and amber notes in the drydown help Animale Animale avoid an excessively arid accord, especially given the early emergence of the moss note, followed by the patchouli note in the base. I find Animale Animale to be a much more versatile fragrance than A*Men and Rochas Man. Longevity is adequate and the sillage varies from strong upon application to a close-to-the-skin scent in the drydown. If you are a fan of gourmands, give this one a try. If you are not a fan of gourmands, give this one a try.

    06 August, 2011

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