Fragrance Reviews from July 2012

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    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Delicious Closet Queen by Etat Libre d'Orange

    The giddying list of notes is misleading – this has ‘man cologne’ written all over it (you know, ‘fresh’, woodsy, with some synthetic oompah oompah thrown in). Nicely anchored with a sandal-cedar combo that lurks gently under the surface, but, alas, no guilty secret to truly thrill. Solidly constructed, this would be a safe bet for perfume newbies.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Folie de Figue by Esteban

    Help! Another gorgeous but polite fig. A startlingly alive realization of fig leaf, rounded off by an accent of bay, over a base of fig bark and cedar. It’s green, it’s airy, it puts a spring in my step and would make for perfect summer wear. But alas, despite dousing myself, it keeps dying down to a murmur.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Incense Rosé by Tauer

    This perfume has the angular dynamism of a Brancusi sculpture – many have commented on the ‘fizzy’, ‘spritzy’, just squeezed feel of the notes. In my experience, there’s nothing else that bears close comparison. Full-throttle, rich, with the energy of a wildcat.
    Immediately striking is the perfect definition of so many notes: bold powerful citruses (that last a looong time), a big dose of cardamom (normally a deal-breaker for me but here dancing in the mix), a rose note that’s as sharp as a paper cut, myrrh that feels like a growing bush rather than an extract, the piercing tones of cedar and vetiver – and, oh yes, the incense,
    a bit muffled at the start, but slowly revealing itself over the evolution of the perfume to take centrestage. It’s a dazzling display and the citruses and somewhat herbal quality really give it a dimension that the nose has to adjust to because it’s rarely encountered in a mix of this kind. The deep drydown is sweet, perhaps a touch too much, mainly incense with the suggestion of the rose departed.
    I applaud the conception and execution of this one, but remain undecided whether I would regularly want to wear something with so much going on. It seems to me to cry out to be released as a perfumed candle.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Lady Cool by Dueto Parfums

    One could waste many more words on this but what it boils down to is a drugstore sweety. Completely synthetic smelling soft fruity floral, as if the ranks of those needed swelling. Has a faint bit of ammoniac discord somewhere in the mix. Won’t offend for sure but similarly fails to please.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Memoir Woman by Amouage

    Bored, one Sunday afternoon years ago when I was still a kid, my friends and I decided to mix all the different fizzy drinks we could find into what we hoped would be a knockout punch. Lesson one: the sum is rarely equal to its parts. Lesson two: we all drank this curious, sweet concoction and declared it ‘interesting’, rather that honestly saying it didn’t taste much of anything at all.
    Why does Memoir Woman remind me of this? Maybe it’s because it comes across a bit like the misconceived child of Badgley Mischka and Le Male. It has boozy overripe fruit (probably the white florals giving this impression) blowtorched together with bubble gum. One imagines there’s all sorts in here, but the overriding sweetness pours syrup over the contours. Funnily enough it’s quite easy to wear and rather upbeat in mood despite the ‘dark clouds’ marketing. But the vibe remains steadfastly downmarket.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Rose d'Amour by Les Parfums de Rosine

    Caked face powder that got left in the spice cupboard. The rose in the opening is pungent and difficult to befriend. The drydown has a certain creaminess and the spice recedes. Musty and persistent.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Vraie Blonde by Etat Libre d'Orange

    An ‘oh no, not again’ opening on me – aldehydic citrus with a sprinkling of pepper, common to legions of drugstore ‘men’s’ colognes. Luckily the dry, medicinal myrrh popped its head up pretty sharpish to keep me interested, followed by the rounding fruit and floral notes. The effect was simultaneously light yet rich, a trick ELdO seems pretty adept at. Had this stage lingered, we’d have had something to talk about. Unfortunately within the hour all that remained was a trace of myrrh and some musty muskiness.

    14 July, 2012

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Big Pony 2 by Ralph Lauren

    Musk and chocolate? Pull the other one. This is a generic cheapo-smelling spice-fresh offering in the Axe mould. Guaranteed to suffocate bystanders. Pushed by sales people as the ideal gift for teenage boys – sure, if they want to render the objects of their lust unconscious.

    14 July, 2012

    The_Cologneist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Time for Peace for Him by Kenzo

    An amazing fragrance from an amazing perfumer. When I wear Time for Peace, I can't help but think YSL M7, there's something about it that reminds me of it. Maybe it's the cherry like accord that mixes with the herbal smell; it comes off as very medicinal.

    In the opening I get a complex blend of many notes. Sage, mandarin, cherry, tonka, incense, cinnamon, with a very resinous amber in the background. Like others have said, this is a soft fragrance. Soft, but ever so bold. TfP really makes a statement. Is it worth 200+ a bottle.. well, that's what you would be spending, roughly, to get your hands on this rare little gem. If you can afford it, then get it, ya, it's really good!

    14 July, 2012

    nonsisa's avatar

    Germany Germany

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    Original Santal by Creed

    It is quite a well blended scent but not for everybody tough.

    For me it's a bit hard to pick out the notes except for the sandalwood.

    Definitely something you need to try before you buy it.

    14 July, 2012

    nonsisa's avatar

    Germany Germany

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    L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme Extreme by Guerlain

    Seems very likable and friendly to me. Something you could easily put on every day for almost every occasion. No edges and therefore it lacks a bit in character to me.

    14 July, 2012

    Hoppity's avatar



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    Presence by Houbigant

    I just bought a vintage bottle of this and I love it. It reminds me of Quickies face pads which you can't get anymore, the scent of those was my favourite "smell" when I was a child. I'm not very good at identifying notes in perfume, but this to me is powdery, comforting and close wearing. Maybe the opening notes are a little harsh (aren't most fragrances like that?) but it hardly lasts and soon blooms into soapy loveliness.

    14 July, 2012

    drseid's avatar

    United States United States

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    Entre Naranjos by Ramon Monegal

    Entre Naranjos opens with the main star of the scent, orange blossom, coupling with a green-like invigorating herbal bitter orange and petitgrain combo. The herbal bitter orange recedes in the early heart notes, but the orange blossom remains throughout slowly melding with mild amber from the base. Finally all but just a trace of the orange blossom disappears letting the amber take a bit more of a role in the fleeting base before the scent disappears entirely. Projection is average and longevity is well-below average.

    Entre Naranjos is a beautiful composition that deftly melds the floral aspects of orange blossom with bitter orange to create a great fresh and natural smelling pick-me-up. The petitgrain also adds a bit of a "green" vibe to the composition, adding to its allure. The scent is very natural smelling and the bitter orange in particular is extremely well-done. The only problem with the scent in my mind is its relatively brief longevity (something that plagues many citrus scents to be fair). That said, longevity aside Entre Naranjos is easily the best of the four scents I have tried from the house to date and is a very strong entry in the citrus category by Monegal, well-deserving of an excellent 4 out of 5 stars.

    14 July, 2012

    Murphy2012's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Narciso Rodriguez for Him by Narciso Rodriguez

    I bought this at the start of a job i began to utterly hate. The smell of this fragrance helped turn a very sad time into one tinged with happiness. My colleagues loved this fragrance on me, they said it reminded them of Christmas in New York. Paradoxically what we have here is an urban fougere, gone are the trees and in their place we have cold gleaming concrete and freshly laundered shirts and suits. This is great evening wear.

    14 July, 2012

    Zut's avatar



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    Vivre by Molyneux

    Top: Aldehydes, coriander, green leaves, bergamot
    Heart: iris, orange blossom, jasmine, hiacynth, ylang-ylang, lily-of-the-valley, rose
    Base: leather, sandalwood, tonka bean, oakmoss, vetiver, myrrh

    Vivre is a very joyful fragrance. It is a vibrant and modern floral aldehyde that could almost pass for a light floral in spite of its quite impressive base note palette. In fact, the dark and earthy base notes remain rather discreet. Once the dryer top notes subside to make way for the luscious floral heart, the base elements slowly appear and make the entire composition softer and slightly sweeter. Vivre is young and flowery but it has a lot of character. I am sorry it is no longer as popular as it used to be in the 70's and early 80's.

    14 July, 2012

    Murphy2012's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Sandalwood by Taylor of Old Bond Street

    Taylor of old bondstreet make great shaving cream that smells beautiful. This is the cologne version; smells lovely, really, really lovely, it just has no lasting power. unfortunate.

    14 July, 2012

    mesaboogie's avatar

    United States United States

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    Spicebomb by Viktor & Rolf

    Spicebomb is a pretty good fragrance. It starts off sweet and bubblegum-ish like 1 Million, but not as sugary. It also smells like Tobacco Vanille, Gucci PH II and especially like Eau de Beaux as it dries down. It's not as spicy as the name would lead you to believe. It's more sweet. It projects very strongly for the first 2 hours and then POOF! It turns into a skin scent for the remainder of it's life span. Longevity is decent at 6-8 hours, but I'm really struggling to smell it at 8 hours. The sprayer is phenomenal. It's not quite Dior or Creed status, but it's beastly on it's own merit. It's pretty versatile and I think it would do ok in any season, save for the warmest summer days. I love the bottle even if it is considered to be tacky by some. It fits the personality of the fragrance perfectly.

    14 July, 2012

    Excellent959's avatar



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    Cristalle Eau de Toilette by Chanel

    This might sound very strange, but after 1 hour i smell green tea, not the kind you get in grocery stores, but true japanese gyokuru, never smelled this in any male or female scents, so for this alone , cristalle earns two thumbs up for top grade / high quality ingridients.

    14 July, 2012

    Murphy2012's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Original Cologne by Pashana

    I tried this on the off chance that i might have misjudged the aftershave (it smells like stale urine). I then realized that it was a completely different fragrance. I agree with Faust that out of the bottle it smells like something you could clean metal with and applied neatly on the skin it smells like you have over done it on the softener. However, after a while something begins to happen, you're hit with a deep nostalgic smell that at first I couldn't pin point but then it finally hit me, this juice is the quintessential ENGLISH barbershop neatly caught in a bottle. If the Americans have pinaud and the French have their rive gauche then the English have this. This is the smell that my mums old barber shop used to have. it smells like a fresh haircut.Love it or hate it, its the definitive of an obscure classic.

    14 July, 2012

    Murphy2012's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Tuscan Leather by Tom Ford

    "if a man wears a suit, buy him Fahrenheit.
    if a man is into rambling buy him Green Irish Tweed.
    if a man is into grooming and shaving, buy him rive gauche.
    if a man is into sado masochism buy him Tom Ford Tuscan Leather.....he'll love you for it..."

    In all seriousness, this is the best leather fragrance one can get. it is not a scent for other people, it is the lone cogito of fragrances, to be enjoyed on a purely individual basis. I put this lightly on my wrists along with whatever other fragrance I spray on my neck. This is probably my favorite fragrance.
    Treat it as a fine scotch, to be enjoyed sparsely and carefully rather than copiously and carelessly. However like a fine single malt scotch, it costs a pretty penny and comes in a nice brown bottle.

    14 July, 2012

    Excellent959's avatar



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    Light Blue by Dolce & Gabbana

    Smelled this on a girl for years in a yoga class. She made 3 mistakes for me: 1) overwearing is a no no for me, 2) don't wear perfume in a hatha yoga class, 3) don't over apply, which she did all the time. Ever since she ruined it for me, lol .... the slightest hint of this juice will turn me off. If you don't make any of those mistakes, this might work for you & people around you.

    14 July, 2012

    CoL's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Loverdose by Diesel

    I just love this! The star anise doesn't over power, either does the licorice. Both of these are used a little too heavily in some fragrance but the balance is perfect here. Lovely warm/amber/vanilla base. Very well done! I assume it's most likely highly synthetic but it has been blended expertly so comes off beautifully. This is a power house so it might be best to test first!

    14 July, 2012

    CoL's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Calum by Calum Best

    I completely ignored this fragrance due to the Z list celebrity thing assuming it would be synthetic vile hell! Well I was purchasing some things from Semichem online in the UK and it was one of those situations where if you spend £4 more you'll save the £4 delivery charge. I saw this in a gift set with 200ml shower gel and a 100ml EDT for £7 so I read the reviews here I thought why not! Effectively only costing me £3 and a little change. So when it arrived I expected to take one sniff and give it to someone else as a gift. It's actually really nice, no doubt it's all synthetic but it's done rather well. Smells much more 'expensive' than I thought. Quality wise on a par with P&G but for 1/8th of the cost!

    14 July, 2012

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    Aspen for Men by Coty

    One could do a lot worse than Aspen for Men, and at fifteen dollars for a 4oz bottle, how could you go wrong? I really enjoy this one around Fall and Winter time. Yes, it's a Green Irish Tweed/Coolwater hybrid knock off, but really, who cares!? Aspen for men smells damn good for what you pay. As a matter of fact, I get a lot more complements on this one than I do with a lot of my designer fragrances that I own. The only people I could see not liking this one would be the fragrance snobs that wouldn't wear anthing that Walgreens has in their stock. Oh well, their loss is my gain.

    14 July, 2012

    Smellitivity's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Palazzo by Fendi

    Palazzo is (was) intense and thick, with caramel notes in the opening, with a red orange bringing a little bit of light. After that however, Palazzo becomes thicker and darker, with heavy roses and still a memory of the orange of the beginning. The finale is less intense, with vanilla and woods.
    Too bad that it didn't sell enough and was discontinued, is the time of powerful orientals on the mainstream side maybe over?

    14 July, 2012

    The_Cologneist's avatar

    United States United States

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    Jaguar Vision by Jaguar

    Starts off as Aventus (the batches with lots of pineapple), less smokey though. Turns into Black XS. Very nice, but since I own Black XS, the 2 hours of pineapple aren't enough for me, since this smells like Black XS longer than it does Aventus. Regardless, this is probably the best I have smelled from Jaguar, as their other fragrances all have a sour tangerine note, that doesn't particularly sit well with me.

    Update: After wearing it more, I take back as much comparison to the two. It has the pineapple note from Aventus but not the woods, instead it's got tonka, lots & lots of tonka! It eventually gets ruined by the tonka imo, although it's nice and creamy, it ruins a potential Aventus clone. It still has some of Black XS DNA in there too, but more synthetic smelling. To me, it reminds me of Lifesavers candy.

    Longevity is excellent as is projection. 8 hours minimum.

    14 July, 2012 (Last Edited: 16 July, 2012)

    Murphy2012's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Fahrenheit by Christian Dior

    this fragrance smells like an oily car mechanic crushing flowers in his palms after realizing he's won the lottery; urban, floral and rich.

    14 July, 2012 (Last Edited: 04 August, 2012)

    drseid's avatar

    United States United States

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    M by Puredistance

    M opens with bergamot, with ginger and cinnamon spice and a hint of jasmine. The ginger all but fades relatively quickly, but the cinnamon remains well into the heart notes, combining with cumin that continues M's spicy nature while not overdoing it by smelling like BO as many other cumin compositions do. Patchouli, clove and even just a faint whiff of carnation permeate the heart notes, as a sublime subtle leather, oakmoss and vetiver accord emerges from the base notes to complete the profile. Projection is average to above average and longevity is excellent.

    M is a stunningly beautiful composition and while certainly leathery, the spicy notes really are equally as important to its success with the whole thing coming off without a hitch execution-wise. The aspect of M that took me a while to really recognize is just how deftly the vetiver is utilized in the base notes to ground the leather and spice. I certainly find M an easy recommendation for the scent smell and materials quality, but it is quite the expensive one on a per ml basis so budgetary constraints may play a role for many when considering a purchase. At the very least, this amazingly good 4 to 4.5 star out of 5 scent is a "must sniff" to all leather lovers.

    14 July, 2012 (Last Edited: 21st August, 2012)

    gimmegreen's avatar

    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Tam Dao by Diptyque

    Sandalwood is a bit of a mundane note for me thanks to my Indian childhood. I smelled it in hair oil and soap, and every evening in the little censer of smoking sandalwood shavings that was taken round the rooms of my parental house. The trees grow extremely slowly and so mature examples are highly prized. One afternoon my mother woke from her nap to find that someone had sawn down the two that had been growing in our garden and carted them off.
    Well, Tam Dao is a greasy sandalwood scent and little else; it gets a bit creamy and cedary in the drydown. Pretty monochrome and without the redemption of texture. Far too chaste for my liking, it would suit good Brahmins with oiled plaits and sacred ash on their foreheads.

    14 July, 2012 (Last Edited: 08 January, 2013)

    impdaddee's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Spice and Wood by Creed

    Lemons and apples? That's what they say, and I can just sniff them out, like a couple of wedges of pie on another diner's table while drinking a cup of weak Earl Grey.

    The spice and wood kicks in fast, rounded by the a subtle dirty sweetness of patchouli, and lasts long.

    The dry-down is mostly dry-ish cedar plumped up with a hint of sexy musk. Nice enough, but ruined for about an hour with the emergence of the iris, a note that vaguely repulses me.

    I was initially enthusiastic, until I noticed that the pepper note just kept on stabbing and slicing and hacking at my nose. Ouch. Ouch!! OUCH!!! Enough already, enough. (The Mayans used burning chilies as a kind of gas weapon.)

    Overall, pleasant enough save for the chili dagger, but I laugh at the price. Good for some, not for me.
    =====
    May 10, 2013

    Okay. Another wearing. Smells better this time, although the chili dagger still challenges me. My colleagues at work went berserk--"What are you wearing? It's incredible!".

    14 July, 2012 (Last Edited: 11th May, 2013)

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