Fragrance Reviews from May 2012

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    rogalal's avatar

    United States United States

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    Oolang Infini by Atelier Cologne

    For the life of me, I just don't get what the big deal is with the Atelier line. Actually, I take that back, because, as I was first making the switch from the commonplace to interesting niche, I went through a phase where I was obsessed with "fancy" citrus scents. I think that, for those following a similar arc, Aftelier can be a bit of a revelation after tiring of metallic aquatic scents. That being said, there are better and cheaper citruses out there (Eau d'Hadrien etc) and these will all seem a little simple once you get to know the more challenging end of perfumery.

    Any review of Oolong Infino has to start with the fact that it's incredibly weak. Thank goodness I got a very large decant in a trade, because, while 12 sprays was enough to generate some mild sillage, I had to splash on a whopping handful (easily the equivalent of 20-30 sprays) like an old fashioned splash cologne in order to really smell and get to know Oolong Infini.

    Basically, it's mostly black pepper, with its familiar-from-food topnote and its green, almost sassafras-ish undertones. There's an herbal green note that's somewhere between cilantro and unripe bell peppers, as well as a thin vetiver base. Buried deep, there's a slight hint of creamy green tea and a thin dusting of citrus brightness that briefly shines in the topnotes, but the pepper-into-greens is the star of the show. For the record, I can't smell anything remotely like oolong tea or anything in the notes list.

    All in all, it's pleasant (if not a watered-down copy of Hermes Poivre Samarcande, though), but there's no way I'm giving a thumbs up to an expensive perfume so weak you'd need a quarter of the bottle for a single satisfactory wearing.

    01st May, 2012

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Sel Marin by Heeley

    A warm, spicy and sharply ambery ozonic with a certain level of piquancy and solidity. Masculine and comforting. The beginning is lemony of citrus and bergamot but immediately marine and salty because of the ozonic elements coming from the heart made of seaweeds and calone. The saltiness is extreme in this phase and you smell the lemon, the air and the ocean. Going on the smell becomes more massive, virile and astringent with a sort of discreet warmth coming from vetiver, aromatic greens, resins, cedar and ambergris. The note of cedar  is important to impart solidity and green, aromatic and woody opacity. The saltiness is still stout and slightly tart but less lemony and more "introspective" (less airy). This fragrance smells finally close to the skin, lacking the exuberance of Aria di Mare by Il Profvmo or Acqua di Sale Profumum Roma. Not  bad to me.

    01st May, 2012

    michailG's avatar



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    Orange Sanguine by Atelier Cologne

    Orange Sanguine is a disappointment for me. On my skin and after application it reminds me too much of Joop's Night flight. Orange Sanguine is bitter-sweet, powdery and pleasant. I think though that Orange is drowned in Jasmine and Geranium, so the citrus notes I can't really smell... pity.

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Jicky by Guerlain

    JICKY – Guerlain – 1889 [leather oriental]

    I had heard about this all of my life, but never encountered it. When I did, I exclaimed where had I been all it’s life! This is a warm, sensual, leather oriental that is in a class all by itself. It is the first of the modern perfumes and was for years shunned by women as being too daring, and simultaneously embraced by men. A favorite of two James Bond stars, Sean Connery and Roger Moore, as well as by Cary Grant, this is quite beyond words. Try it!

    Top Notes: Bergamot, Lemon, Mandarin
    Middle Notes: Lavender, Rosemary, Basil, Bay, Orris, Coumarin
    Base Notes: Vanillan, Amber, Benzoin, Rosewood, Cinnamon, Sandalwood, Civet

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Shalimar by Guerlain

    SHALIMAR – Guerlain – 1925 [classic oriental]

    This is the classic oriental, one of my favorites (Yves St. Laurent’s OPIUM and Boucheron’s JAIPUR HOMME are my top favorite orientals). This is a warm, vanilla rich oriental, the very first of its type, and still the very best. Both men and women swoon when you wear it.

    Top Notes: Bergamot, Lemon, Hesperides
    Middle Notes: Jasmine, Iris, Rose, Patchouli, Vetiver
    Base Notes: Vanilla, Frankincense, Opopanox, Sandalwood, Musk, Civet, Ambergis, Coumarin

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Nahéma by Guerlain

    NAHEMA – Guerlain – 1979 [floral/rose]

    There is a pleasant green note to this dry, light rose scent that makes it a perfect summer cologne. Well worth the investment, financially, as it is a loyal soldier in one’s supporting scent collection, always there to perform admirably when one just can’t choose.

    Top Notes: Peach, Bergamot
    Middle Notes: Bulgarian Rose, Rose de Mai, Rose Hyacinth, Ylang Ylang, Lilac, Jasmine, Muguet
    Base Notes: Passion Fruit, Peru Balsam, Benzoin, Vanilla, Vetiver, Sandalwood, Styrax

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Narcisse Noir by Caron

    NARCISSE NOIR – Caron – 1911 [floral]

    An unusual coincidence? Caron unveils this light orange blossom scent for women and the year following, 1912, Floris unveils its orange blossom scent for men (#127). Mind you, the latter has a stronger petitgrain note, but seems to me an obvious attempt to cash in on Caron’s creativity. The point here is that the scent was marketable a century ago as a “new idea” and as one considered appropriate for both sexes.

    Caron’s is a very light neroli, perfect for late afternoon summer wear – cocktails on the lawn? It is also appropriate as an early morning summer splash for office or social wear. One might want to pair it with the Floris, which is more appropriate for evening wear.

    Top Notes: Neroli, Bergamot, Lemon, Petitgrain
    Middle Notes: Jasmin, Jonquil
    Base Notes: Black Narcissus, Musk, Civet, Sandalwood, Vetiver

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Je Reviens by Worth

    JE REVIENS – Worth – 1932 [floral, powdery]

    I will forever associate this scent with live theater, as every Playbill I accumulated throughout the sixties and seventies contained a card wrapped in cellophane redolent of Je Reviens.

    The scent is very fresh, a bright and subtle floral mix, with a hint of violet, that dries down to a soft, powdery cloud that is irresistible to others. Who is not comforted by the warmth of a softly scented powder?

    Another totally unique scent I’ve not found copied by imitators.

    Top Notes: Orange Blossom, Bergamot, Violet, Jasmine, Ylang Ylang, Coumarin
    Middle Notes: Clove, Rose, Hyacinth, Lilac, Orris, Narcissus, Jonquil
    Base Notes: Amber, Frankincense, Tonka Bean, Vetiver, Musk, Oakmoss, Sandalwood, Tolu Balsam

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fracas by Robert Piguet

    FRACAS – Piguet – 1948 [light fruity]

    Peach – one of the food scents (like vanilla), which is practically universally loved. Here we have a simple bright scent, redolent of ripe summer peaches, perfect for early morning summer wear. The subtle underplay of tuberose supports the peach note to perfection, but never overpowers. This is extremely attractive to both sexes – don’t be surprised.

    Penhaligon’s recent Elenesia and Lili Bermuda’s recent Allegria are extremely close cousins to this masterful creation from the late forties.

    Top Notes: Bergamot, Mandarin, Hyacinth, Peach, Orange Blossom
    Middle Notes: Tuberose, Jasmine, Muguet, White Iris, Violet, Jonquil, Carnation, Coriander, Osmanthus, Pink Geranium, Rose
    Base Notes: Musk, Sandalwood, Orris, Vetiver, Tolu Balsam, Cedarwood, Oakmoss, Amber, Benzoin

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Youth Dew by Estée Lauder

    YOUTH DEW – Lauder – 1952 [light oriental]

    An unfortunate name for any scent, this caused a revolution in the marketing of perfume, being based on oil rather than alcohol, and originally released as an “after bath cologne.”

    This serves as my every day oriental. It is round, warm and enveloping, emphasizing cinnamon. It strongly resembles TABU, but without the cloying effect the latter can evoke with its simple formula of Patchouli, Carnation, Oakmoss and Vanilla. It was worn by both Gloria Swanson and Joan Crawford.

    Top Notes: Orange, Bergamot, Peach, Spice
    Middle Notes: Clove, Cinnamon, Cassia, Rose, Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Orchid, Carnation
    Base Notes: Frankincense, Amber, Vanilla, Oakmoss, Musk, Patchouli, Vetiver, Tolu, Benzoin, Peru Balsam

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cabochard by Grès

    CABOCHARD – Gres – 1959 [floral chypre]

    This is such a masculine scent, that I am surprised it was ever marketed as a woman’s scent. It is a spicy, herbal scent, drying to a classic oakmoss chypre with a fragrant floral overlay – quite unique in all of the women’s scents I have experienced.

    Top Notes: Clary Sage, Galbanum, Tarragon, Hesperides
    Middle Notes: Jasmine, Rose, Ylang Ylang, Orris, Geranium
    Base Notes: Amber, Patchouli, Musk, Oakmoss, Vetiver, Castoreum, Sandalwood

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Madame Rochas (new) by Rochas

    MADAME ROCHAS – Rochas – 1960 [floral/honey rose chypre]

    This is a heady combination of Schiaparelli’s SHOCKING and Brosseau’s later and lighter OMBRE ROSE. Heady dry rose with a leathery honey mix. Wonderful for a summer afternoon – everyone will flock to you, including yourself.

    Top Notes: Hyacinth, Neroli, Lemon, Orange Blossom, Broom, Honeysuckle, Bergamot
    Middle Notes: Bulgarian Rose, Rose de Mai, Jasmine, Muguet, Violet, Narcissus, Orris, Tuberose, Ylang Ylang
    Base Notes: Amber, Cedarwood, Sandalwood, Moss, Vetiver, Musk, Tonka Bean, Benzoin, Coumarin

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Coriandre by Jean Couturier

    CORIANDRE – Couturier – 1973 [floral/herbal chypre]

    Another totally unique scent, blending herbals, florals and chypre notes into a light, warm, sophisticated and intoxicating blend. The unique blend of coriander and angelica, mixed with Bulgarian rose, wafting over a gentle chypre base, has to be experienced to be believed. A dry, spicy delight. One of my very favorites and a birthday gift this year for every woman – and man – on my list.

    Top Notes: Coriander, Orange Blossom, Angelica
    Middle Notes: Rose, Geranium, Lily, Jasmine, Orris
    Base notes: Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Vetiver, Musk, Oakmoss, Patchouli, Civet

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Opium by Yves Saint Laurent

    OPIUM – St. Laurent – 1977 [oriental]

    This is an outstanding spicy floral oriental, one of my top favorites in this category. Light, compounding rose, vanilla, cinnamon, etc. into an intoxicating and seductive aura. Quite amazing!

    Top Notes: Plum, Hesperides, Clove, Coriander, Pepper, Bay, Mandarin, Cilantro, Pimento
    Middle Notes: Jasmine, Rose, Carnation, Muguet, Peach, Orris, Ylang Ylang, Cinnamon
    Base Notes: Sandalwood, Vetiver, Myrrh, Opopanox, Labdanum, Benjamin, Benzoin, Castoreum, Amber, Frankincense, Musk, Patchouli, Tolu, Cedar, Vanilla

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Angel by Thierry Mugler

    ANGEL – Mugler – 1992 [fruity, vanilla, powdery]

    This one I am going out on a limb for – people either love it or hate it. It begins with a strong mix of strawberry, dewberry and chocolate/caramel, which quickly dries down to a fruity, powdery vanilla that is extremely captivating. The dry down can be reminiscent of Earl Grey Tea. This is a heart melter for both sexes, as it works on some of our most primary food scent attractions.

    I advise you to try a sample first and give it a chance over many applications – in other words, don’t decide right off whether you like it or not – give it time to win you over.

    Totally unique scent combination that prompted many imitators – but the original is the best of the lot.

    Top Notes: Strawberry, Dewberry, Helonial, Honey, Bergamot, Jasmine, Orchid, Rose
    Middle Notes: Chocolate, Caramel, Coumarin
    Base Notes: Vanilla, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Musk

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Nu Eau de Toilette by Yves Saint Laurent

    NU – St. Laurent – 2001 [citrus woods]

    Although this flopped when it premiered, I find it to be one of the very best woods-oriented scents I have ever experienced. The opening is a lovely blend of citrus and herbal notes. The dry down is a light, sophisticated mixture of wood notes. A real “find” that should be repackaged and remarketed as a man’s scent.

    Top Notes: Bergamot, Neroli
    Middle Notes: Jasmine, Orchid
    Base Notes: Cedarwood, Cardamom, Frankincense, Balsam, Vanilla, Orris, Musk, Ambergris

    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Perles de Lalique by Lalique

    PERLES DE LALIQUE – Lalique – 2006 [floral chypre]

    I have only been able to learn three of this scent’s ingredients and indeed it may be that simple. This is a chypre that makes a statement, but never overpowers. The blend of Bulgarian rose and patchouli creates a dry, earthy rose scent, richer than Penhaligon’s Hammam Bouquet, sharper, but owing a good deal to this nineteenth century staple. Bold and masculine, self-assured. One of my favorite chypres.

    Top Notes: ?
    Middle Notes: Bulgarian rose
    Base Notes: Bourbon Pepper, Patchouli


    01st May, 2012

    JackTwist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ombre Rose L'Original by Jean-Charles Brosseau

    OMBRE ROSE – Brosseau – 1981 [rose, powdery]

    This is a light, powdery rose scent, using Turkish rose, the dry scent reminiscent of that used in Penhaligon’s classic men’s scent, Hammam Bouquet. Also a bit reminiscent of Caswell Massey’s retired Original Newport. It is non-intrusive, light and enveloping without dominance. One of the best rose scents for men I have found.

    Top Notes: Peach, Rosemary, Geranium, Bergamot, Lavender
    Middle Notes: Muguet, Ylang Ylang, Turkish Rose, Orris, Honey, Heliotrope, Jasmine, Neroli, Violet
    Base Notes: Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Vetiver, Vanilla, Musk, Cinnamon, Tonka Bean, Coumarin, Amber, Musk, Orris

    01st May, 2012

    digger51's avatar

    United States United States

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    Chanel Pour Monsieur by Chanel

    Thsi is a classic scent that should be in every collection. It is clean fresh and completely non offensive. When you wear this you simply smell good. My only real criticism is that is wears close to the skin, but sometimes that is a good thing. Great for a warm summer day.

    01st May, 2012

    iodine's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Fleur d'Oranger by Evody

    Ordinary orange blossoms fragrance, starting much like a classical cologne, sweetening a bit with grape notes, then ending in an annoying and very long lasting musky sourness. I can't see the need for a fragrance like this, considering the huge variety of great orange blossoms scents on the market.

    01st May, 2012

    Notreveh's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    Bamboo Harmony by By Kilian

    Bamboo Harmony is the olfactive impression of a subtle sip of white tea taken in the hearth of a bamboo... moment of spiritulity.

    Bamboo Harmony opens with luminous notes of bergamot, bigarade and neroli. It evolves through a comforting heart combining white te leaves and mimosa, highlighted with a touch of spices. The unique character of the trail is given by rare mate essence interlaced with sensual fig leaves and oak moss.

    Well, it indeed starts with a blast of bergamot followed by an semi hernal neroli tone in a very soft type of scent which through time gives space to a tea note. By Kilian needs to learn how to do tea scents with Bvlgari.

    01st May, 2012

    Notreveh's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    cK one Summer 2010 by Calvin Klein

    A delightful trip into a sweet mandarin juice combined with some other fruits. A truly summer drink scent that smells awesome. This and the 2008 version of cK One summer smells incredible good and weight just a little in your wallet.

    01st May, 2012

    danny1967's avatar



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    Eau de Gloire by Parfum d'Empire

    it's amazing how much is this reminding me of hermes bel ami! a very nice, soft, citrusy leather, quite linear but perfectly wearable during spring and summer. i'm also quite partial to the aniseedic note so all in all, thumbs up.

    01st May, 2012

    Amos Jolthead's avatar

    United States United States

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    A*Men Sunessence Orage D'Ete / Summer Storm by Thierry Mugler

    Opens with a light, fresh scent. I can smell what perceives to be the original A* Men in the first opening note. I think those are the base notes coming through. They are gone pretty quickly. The original note is like a mix of the mandarin and cacao. The cacao is pretty strong, but it almost gives off a spicy scent. It’s like pepper to me, actually. The initial top notes didn’t seem to mix well together for me, but after I wore this a couple of times, I really began to like them, as well.

    The middle notes smell exactly like the middle notes of Mugler’s Taste of Fragrance. The middle notes on the page say “Green Coffee” and “Woody Notes”, but to be honest, I smell a very faint vanilla and pepper. The top notes on the page pyramid say “Spicy Notes” and I think this is it, but this isn’t just in the top notes, it’s at the heart of the fragrance. And again, IMO, it smells just like A* Men TF’s middle notes. In TF, I did not like the top notes because I found the chili pepper to be too strong, but once that died down, I found the heart notes enjoyable. So, I actually find that this serves me well – it gets me the best of both worlds. I didn’t have to pay for a fragrance which contains heavy top notes that I don’t like, yet I can get the heart notes that I found very pleasant. However, it also troubles me because A*Men SOD was made just one year before A* Men TF and it looks like lazy production. The notes smell nearly identical to me. Don’t get me wrong – it is a line – so I know there will be some similarity – the A* Men line looks to me like it is petering out a bit, but I could be wrong.

    The longevity of this is what really upsets me. 3 hours and its gone (except what I spray on my chest, but that is almost a given w/most fragrances). And I do mean gone. The fragrance is very nice, so it’s a bit disappointing for it be so short. I could almost understand 4-5 hours, but every time I’ve worn this, it gives me 3 hours max.

    Anyway, I think that this sells for less than when it initially came out. I got mine for about 45$ (almost half price, I think, from what it would have originally cost). So, I would say give it a shot, but keep in mind that it’s not going to last long. You may have to reapply each time you wear it.

    01st May, 2012

    aromagal's avatar



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    Pure by Alfred Sung

    I disagree this fragrance is long lasting. It faded after only two hours on me. It is a nice scent, though.

    01st May, 2012

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    Versace l'Homme by Versace

    There is no doubt that this is a very powerful scent. With its ever so classic fusion of woods and leather; it embodies what a man should smell like, what a profesional man should smell like. Unfortunately, it also embodies what and OLDER, professional man should smell like. And it is for that reason that i will never wear this scent. Maybe if I had been several decades older, this would have been for me; sadly, I will never know because Versace discontinued it.

    01st May, 2012

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Henry Cotton's by Henry Cotton's


    An easy but effective scent, a traditional italian aromatic water, pungent  of spices and pepper (sharply dusty), lemony of lime, cedar and bergamot, woody in the base with a sheer note of vetiver and some aromatic herbs around. The spices produce the mildness around (mostly nutmeg)  but the smell is cool, balanced and conservative. Some aqueous floral note floats on the aromatic water carring out a touch of sweetness but the final smell on my skin is astringent, virile and rooty-peppery. Not bad.

    01st May, 2012

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Hamsa Nouveau by Swiss Arabian Perfumery

    A nice and somewhat obscure scent. There are some subtle fruit notes, though not obviously pineapple. Despite the fruit, it is not an overtly sweet scent. Perhaps it was marketed at women, but a guy can easily wear it. It is slightly spicy. The dry-down is a touch of amber with oud. The oud gives a slight metallic note, which here is pleasant. Tehre is also a slightly smokey-woody note which is pleasant. The scent is well made and the notes are smoothly blended. It is not heavy or cloying. And, it is in an opulent flocked green velvet coffret, with the bottle shaped like a chess piece. Listed as an EdP.

    01st May, 2012

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Airborne by Comme des Garçons

    Oh, how I love mastic (Lentiscus) as a note!
    This scent starts with lovely lemon and citrus notes. Very quickly, I get the mastic: dry, grassy-green, resinous. This blends well with bright juniper (aromatic and woody), and further excellent dry incense and wood notes. The scent is dry and translucent.
    It is not as weighty and dense as the other mastic-prominent scent (Sisley's Eau D'Ikar). The mastic here is not as prominent, and it is blended into the over mix in a subtle manner.
    The scent is light, subtle, and wears very well through the day.

    01st May, 2012

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Cedar Wood and Clary Sage by St. James of London

    The opening citrus notes are pleasant. They are followed by a bit of spice and a fresh, minty note. The cedar starts as a light wood tone and gains in strength and has great longevity. This is listed as a post-shave product but it is substantial enough to be used as a scent. Great value.

    01st May, 2012

    Showing 1 to 30 of 1102.