Fragrance Reviews from July 2012

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    SirScent's avatar

    United States United States

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    Escada Moon Sparkle for Men by Escada

    This was a blind buy for me that I do not regret.
    However, I have an issue with the name.

    I wore this the other day and a friend said "That smells nice-what are you wearing?".

    Hmmmm.

    I must say, I was a bit embarassed and I hesitated to say" Moon Sparkle".
    I might as well have said "Fairy Dust" for the look I received from my friend when I said the name.
    They asked again, thinking I was joking. C'mon Escada-who came up with this one?
    That having been said-let's get to the frag.

    Ever smell Andy Warhol for men?
    (Not the Bond version but the Andy Warhol with the $ Dollar signs on the bottle).
    Moon Sparkle is very similar in the drydown to Andy Warhol.
    A bit sweeter and less fig but still a very fresh and green frag that is quite enjoyable.
    I don't get the basting sharp top note that others refer to-thank goodness.
    I find this to be casual and nice.
    Just be prepared for the looks you'll get when people ask you what you are wearing.
    (I've found it easier to just say "Escada").


    20th July, 2012

    cacio's avatar

    United States United States

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    Futur by Robert Piguet

    (Current version) A wonderful green chypre. As others have pointed out, Futur emphasizes both aspects of the genre. It is both very dark, vegetal, mossy, and very soapy. On paper, I had the impression that it became in fact too soapy, but on my skin, it maintains a good balance. Both more vegetal and more soapy than Givenchy III vintage, cleaner and less haughty than Cristalle, greener and more synthetic than Ormonde Jayne Tiare.

    20th July, 2012

    mushroom's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Blue Agava and Cacao by Jo Malone

    I think a lot of Jo Malone's scents are misunderstood - they are rarely best worn alone, but layered with another, maybe 2 other of the scents. They are all designed to work together, and believe me, try the Blue Agava & Cacao with the Grapefruit, and you will get a completely different, beautiful fragrance.

    Both these scents do not do much alone, but together are fantastic. I get so many compliments when wearing these, even strangers in shops stopping me and asking me what scent I am wearing. The only negative thing I can say about Jo Malone is for an expensive brand, the scents do not have the same staying power as other perfumes in the same price range.

    20th July, 2012

    mushroom's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Grapefruit by Jo Malone

    I think a lot of Jo Malone's scents are misunderstood - they are rarely best worn alone, but layered with another, maybe 2 other of the scents. They are all designed to work together, and believe me, try the Blue Agava & Cacao with the Grapefruit, and you will get a completely different, beautiful fragrance.

    Both these scents do not do much alone, but together are fantastic. I get so many compliments when wearing these, even strangers in shops stopping me and asking me what scent I am wearing. The only negative thing I can say about Jo Malone is for an expensive brand, they do not have the same staying power as other perfumes in the same price range.

    20th July, 2012

    cacio's avatar

    United States United States

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    Tiare by Ormonde Jayne

    A green chypre in the classical style. Green, deep, rich, but very natural smelling and luminous. Citruses, light flowers over a nouveau chypre base. Compared to, say, Cristalle, it is less haughty and more floral. It feels richer and more complex, but at the same time fresher and more relaxed. Great longevity, and perfect for men too. As perfume critic Luca Turin argued, this is one of the few deep, rich, classical perfumes composed in recent years, what the big brands ought to be doing if they were not too busy with disinfectants for men or syrups for women.

    A word of caution: I have never smelled the tiare flower, so I cannot comment on the faithfulness of the scent to the flower. But if the flower is similar to gardenias (as, for instance, in Manoumalia), this is not it. There's nothing stereotypically tropical here, we're firmly in the XVI arrondissement, or, perhaps, among XVI arrondissement Parisians who have loosened up a bit after a London stay.

    cacio

    20th July, 2012

    mushroom's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Lovely by Sarah Jessica Parker

    Beautiful scent that has the hallmarks of a classic, I believe this scent will stand the test of time. I was a bit disappointed with the rest of the range, Covet isn't bad, but they are not a patch on this.

    20th July, 2012

    cacio's avatar

    United States United States

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    Ambrarem by Histoires de Parfums

    The trio of -m Editions rares seems to me a brutalist experiment to marry disturbing, bilge notes a la Secretions Magnifiques to the classical, rich style of the HdP house. Much as I admire the conceptual experiment, I am hypersensitive to these notes, so, as alfarom pointed out, I find Ambrarem horrifying. It is the scariest of the trio. The metallic bilge note is amplified by the strong pepper in the top, resulting in a monster of uncommon evil. Besides, I feel that the bilge note has no relation whatsoever with the rest of the composition, a classical smooth amber, which gives the effect of a light oriental scent being brutalized by an attack of decaying zombies. In this sense, Petroleum, which is perhaps even stronger, smells less evil, as the bilge note doesn't feel out of place with the rest of the composition. But Ambrarem joins the undistinguished company of M/Mink and Tirrenico as the symbol of the unchecked, full power of these powerful, synthetic materials.

    cacio

    20th July, 2012

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Dzing! by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    Some reviewers write that Dzing is evocative and effectively it is. Many talk about circensian conjurations and i see the association because of the olfactory sequence of leathery, animalic, somehow rubbery, green, mouldy and tasty whiffs. I have nevertheless to write that this complex juice reminds me prevalently the  antique athenaeums' atmosphere with all their multi parfumed and variegate stuck aromas of mould, leather, hay (i think because of the saffron's influence), fornitures, tobacco, papirus and dust. The combination of honey (caramel-vanilla), saffron, cinnamon (?) and ginger is a dissonant-aromatic tasty magic. An intimate and introspective juice to be enjoyed on your own in the rarefied smoky and spicy atmosphere of a cozy intellectual ambience or inside a literary café.

    20th July, 2012 (Last Edited: 21st July, 2012)

    furrypine's avatar

    Norway Norway

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    Eau Sauvage Parfum by Christian Dior

    I don't understand the reviews saying this is completely different from Eau Savage EdT. To me, the original notes are clearly present for most of the progression; it's like looking at the original through a piece of dark amber, the structure is intact. The parfum has great longevity and a stealthy but huge projection, go easy on the trigger.

    20th July, 2012 (Last Edited: 09 August, 2012)

    Francolino's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    James Bronnley Gentlemen's Eau de Toilette by Bronnley

    this really smells of English melancholic late summer evenings

    20th July, 2012 (Last Edited: 24 January, 2013)

    cacio's avatar

    United States United States

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    Pétroleum by Histoires de Parfums

    Petroleum is part of the -m Editions rares trio, an experiment in marrying brutalist bilge notes to classical structures typical of HdP. One's liking of these experiments, then, depends on one's opinion on such marine notes. I am hypersensitive. That said, I do admire the effect of Petroleum. The union of bilge notes with the now pervasive synthetic oud-roses creates the feeling of entering a dark, cold, damp, frightening cave. Everything is there: the fresh, cold air (the ozonic effect highlighted by alfarom), a strong metallic, mineral material, the mold, and some unindentified decaying organism. Not that I would ever wear this, but smelling it on paper is interesting - in the same sense that smelling Secretions Magnifiques is. Relative to the sister Ambrarem, this at least seems to have a coherent structure and an interesting purpose.

    The neutral rating is an average. As something to wear, this is strongly negative. As an experiment, it is positive. The point is, HdP seems to present this as a straight up, real perfume, not as a conceptual exercise (like Sec Mag), so the first criterion (wearability) is included.

    cacio

    21st July, 2012

    ericrico's avatar

    United States United States

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    Gucci No. 1 by Gucci

    I don't typically review women's scents, but this is an epic masterpiece. With the passing of Guy Robert a short time ago on May 28th, I wanted to say that this is a bottle of amazing quality - a masterpiece and timeless beauty. While classified as a "Floral Aldehyde" - it is stunningly deep, rich and full of earthy and wood notes. Oakmoss, patchouli, amber, cedar, musk and a benzoin/vanilla base further enhanced by tonka bean. So deep and warm. While aldehydes are present, they lift the notes off your skin and allow the entire composition to breathe, but are not overly dominant. The color of the Eau de Parfum in a 60ml spray I bought for my wife is bronze and all the notes are true to form. It is closer in color to Guy Robert's 1970 masterpiece he created for Hermes in Equipage (4 years earlier) than his bottling of Gucci Pour Homme Original just two years later...a chypre.

    Now, while I am adventurous in scent and adore his 1976 creation - a masterpiece for men! - there is a part of me that believes this scent with it gorgeous base notes and integrated oriental tones and depth could possibly be worn by a confident, classic man! I have floral scents for men that are far less rich as this and could easily be worn by my wife. While I believe this is perfection in scent made for a confident and elegant woman of taste - understand that this plays off Carl Jung's archetypes of both Dynamic Feminine and a strong presence of Static Masculine in the base notes that could easily rise to the forefront. It smells as good today as it did nearly 40 years ago - and, perhaps in comparison to so many scents that are not nearly as well-composed...even better. Timeless. Just like a piece by Bach, or Chopin - does it ever sound "dated"? No, it is classic...as is this fragrance.

    I see this as a centerpiece for a woman's collection - it is chic, amazingly elegant and gorgeously rich. Not for the faint of heart. Age appropriate is 30's to 60's, but it is how a woman carries herself and her aire of sophistication that will allow her to adorn this fragrance. This is a confident Woman's scent that is never going to be out of style - like Monsieur Robert's Pour Homme bottling...you must wear this proper or it will wear you.

    10/10. Masterpiece.

    21st July, 2012

    Andrewthecologneguy's avatar

    Nigeria Nigeria

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    Paradigm by Avon

    A better Lagerfeld Classic. The opoponax in LC is too much and not very well balanced. In Paradigm, it is well contrasted with other manly ingredients to make it very beautiful. I can see this as an easy signature scent, especially with its hints of Macassar. THis is one of those Avon scents that is worth a full bottle purchase. Thumbs up!

    21st July, 2012

    msi_21's avatar

    Iran Iran

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    Comme des Garçons 2 Man by Comme des Garçons

    The opening on my skin is dominated by the so called 'Aldehydes', which at first I thought is a fresh clean citrus thing. The incense note is playing in the background at this stage while other notes are mostly supporting the whole structure. It dries down to a scent in which there is a better balance between Aldehydes and incense notes.

    It stays for several hours but its subtle and close to skin. It projects a scent which has similarities to that of Gucci pour homme but is certainly different enough to be considered something independent.

    Overall: 7 out of 10.

    21st July, 2012

    dougczar's avatar

    United States United States

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    Encens Flamboyant by Annick Goutal

    I enjoy many offerings from Annick Goutal, however this is not in the same league as some of the best in this class. If you want a truly remarkable incense fragrance, go with CdG Avignon, Armani Prive Bois d'Encens, Montale Full Incense, or by Kilian's Incense Oud.
    I find some of the lesser offerings like this one by Annick Goutal to more closely resemble a dirty ashtray than an incense. Not the kindy of "smoky" vibe I am going for.

    21st July, 2012

    MissMagic's avatar

    Sweden Sweden

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    Floral by Martine Micallef

    An unusual cocktail of spiced florals. The unusually *STRONG* spicy african orange blossoms in this edp really knocks me to the wall with real raw power. Longevity: Very long. Sillage: Very strong. Besides orange blossom, raspberry & fig missing notes are: TOPNOTES: Bergamot, Galbanum. MIDDLE: GERANIUM, ROSE, JASMINE. Base: White musk.

    21st July, 2012

    shamu1's avatar

    United States United States

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    Cuba Royal by Cuba Paris

    A cheap smelling, sweet, synthetic disaster, this fragrance smells like grape flavored hard candy! This is what Cuba Royal smells like when I wear it.

    Actually, this smells okay when you spray it on paper. That way, the room becomes filled with a rich, sweet tobacco smell. On my skin, however, the fragrance is a chemical mess, with no redeeming qualities.

    I can't imagine many cigars smelling like this, unless we're talking about crap like Swisher Sweets. Cuba Royal is a disgusting fragrance.

    MY RATING: 3/10

    21st July, 2012

    manicboy's avatar

    United States United States

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    Dzing! by L'Artisan Parfumeur

    First encountered this when I was given a "tour" of L'Artisan frags by the local rep in Chicago. She described Dzing! as a circus fragrance - cotton candy, horses, leather and hay. What???? Didn't believe her until I sniffed it. Boy, what she right on the money! It was the circus, sans the magician and tent. The cotton candy really is a sweet vanilla/tonka note surrounded by leather and civet. The novelty is found on me! Nothing else out there like this including Bulgari Black. My only complaint is that this is hard to wear. Perfect scent for the circus but if the circus has left town, then I'm hard-pressed to think of an occasion for which I could ever wear this. So novel and good it's beyond reproach. By far, the best fragrance in L'Aritsan's arsenal and the only one I own.

    21st July, 2012

    flathorn's avatar

    United States United States

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    Musc 25 by Le Labo

    Musc 25 fulfilled all of its promise on my skin - it was a pillowy, clean, ethereal white musk from beginning to end, quite lovely, quite mannered. The accent is on the powdery pillow embracing this musk. I have chypre skin, which may be why it didn't turn on me in the midnote, so I would recommend this one to anyone who handles chypres well. It's delectable, cushiony, soft and voluptuous, a winner.

    21st July, 2012

    Roya k's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    Winter Woods by Sonoma Scent Studio

    This is nice and does remind me of winter woods.

    21st July, 2012

    slesperado's avatar

    United States United States

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    1 Million by Paco Rabanne

    This smells like some guy who refused to bathe himself in four weeks, then he developed some incurable type of skin infection and his flesh begins falling off of his body.

    I've tired this so many times. I wanted to like it, but I just couldn't. It smells disgusting! It's one of the most disgusting fragrances I've EVER smelled. I'll never understand why something this horrid would be allowed on the market. I'll also never understand how it has so many positive reviews.

    DO NOT BUY THIS!!!

    21st July, 2012

    rbaker's avatar



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    Allure Homme by Chanel

    A gentle citrus opening than has some gentle pepper added such to make it more interesting. Later Abd vetiver-green not follows and the drydown and a somewhat bland wood note. Overall on me it is a restrained-fresh scent that is not particularly original, although quite well made. A fresh scent for the warmer seasons when one does not want much projection, as it stays closely to my skin from the beginning. Sillage is poor on me with a longevity of under two hours.

    21st July, 2012

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Blu Mediterraneo Mirto di Panarea by Acqua di Parma


    A new (less loud, leathery-animalic and angular) Antaeus's son. Aromatic, rosey and breezy. Magistrally executed this wonderful fragrance is dry, aromatic, classic and invigorating in an elegant way. A touch of marine breeze in the middle of the greens reinforces the cool-airy summery vibe. The wonderful myrtle, immediately detectable in the fuss of the initial hesperidic mess, in its link with aromatic elements, rose-jasmine, patchouli and oakmoss, reminds me the great Antaeus in its classy and cool floral-aromatic feel. The combination of aromatic herbs (basil, thyme, oregano, may be mint), myrtle and red fruits is so cool, sharp and comforting with that "frozen effect" you can enjoy utterly on your body when you abide in ambience with air-conditioning facilities. The smell is so natural and when you spray this juice on your chest after the shower in the course of a humid and warm day you feel immediately restored and refreshed. The mildness is minimal, the juice is constantly cool, aromatic-green and rosey with a cool starring note of myrtle in its link with black currant (pungent and fruity) and lemon. The lemony vibe is more notable than the minimal orangy feel under my nose. The base is mossy (a touch of labdanum?), musky and citrusy. The juice is more modern,  linear and less barber-shop kind than the great Antaeus cause the note of angular bergamot is minimal and the herbs are diversely modulated in order to imprint a green kind of linear aroma. While the Antaeus's dry down is leathery and animalic (but always angular and scattered) the Mirto di Panarea's dry down is lighter and smoother with a sort of iodate, creamy and slightly prickly breeze. On the side of Fico di Amalfi this one is another juice to be enjoyed along the mediterranean seaside.

    21st July, 2012

    rbaker's avatar



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    Allure Homme Sport Eau Extrême by Chanel

    This is not just a more intensive version of the original Allure Homme Sport, but the opening is more interesting with its fresh green minty-citrus impression. The drydown is smoother with light wood and vanilla added. The initial projection is all right, but after an hour or so it remains very close to my skin. A bit richer with better projection than the original AHS, but overall an acceptable fragrance. Longevity on me is about three hours.

    21st July, 2012

    drseid's avatar

    United States United States

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    Agar Musk by Ramon Monegal

    Agar Musk opens with a nice transparent vetiver that is slightly nutty before the agarwood emerges in the heart of the scent and takes center stage. At first the vetiver noticeably remains with subtle spice in the early heart, but shortly afterwards the agarwood completely dominates and retains its dominance for the duration. Despite the name "Agar Musk" I do not really detect much musk (if any) in the composition, with only the faintest hints of a belated leather influence tempering the extremely strong woody nature of the scent. Projection is above average and longevity is outstanding.

    I really enjoyed the nutty vetiver opening of Agar Musk and in the early heart notes I felt the wood and the vetiver really worked well together. Once the vetiver receded and the agar dominated I began to grow tired of the composition pretty quickly as I have smelled this many times before. I will give Monegal some credit in not making the scent as overbearing as some of its competition, but even the leather occurring later-on does not cut the dominant agar enough to really shine through. I also need to restate that I am somewhat puzzled as to the name "Agar Musk" used here. There is plenty of Agar, but no detectable musk of any consequence to my nose at least. Maybe Agar Vetiver would have been more apropos. Despite its shortcomings, I do mildly like Agar Musk and I recommend a trial, but I personally do not consider it worth a purchase. Agar Musk earns a "good" 3 out of 5 star rating, primarily for its opening and early heart notes.

    21st July, 2012

    rbaker's avatar



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    Fahrenheit by Christian Dior

    On me the initial gasoline note is definitely there but very mild indeed and tame; nothing like the blasts I get from the openings of Knize Ten, Bulgari Black or Tom Ford Tuscan Leather. The leather note is equally weak, but the added herbal-green note is a special twist that makes Fahrenheit more interesting. After the first thirty minutes it is very close to my skin, with very poor sillage and projection; its longevity in not bad at all though with about four hours. This fragrance has been reviewed extensively and little can be added, and it was an important step in its time, but I cannot help feeling a little underwhelmed by it.

    21st July, 2012

    rbaker's avatar



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    Fahrenheit 32 by Christian Dior

    On me the orange note is present but is joined by a green note based in the vetiver. The drydown is a very synthetic vanilla that is not cloying as it stays close to my skin after the first hour or so. The basenote is unexciting and there are so much better vanilla scents available. In spite of it's name it has nothing to do with the original Fahrenheit. Good longevity of fours hours. A nice scent but not a great one.

    21st July, 2012

    Hat and Beard's avatar

    United States United States

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    1740 Marquis de Sade by Histoires de Parfums

    What a deep and intriguing fragrance. I may be going out on a limb here, but after having the chance to test all of the 'Histories' line I feel this is one of the better ones they offer. All of the 'Histories' line are very deep/full/rich fragrances, but 1740 just struck the right chord for me; probably because I'm a sucker for leather, labdanum, and smoke. The subtleties of this fragrance have far more to offer than that, but on my skin those are the predominant notes that last the entire time the fragrance does. As a few have said already it opens up extremely boozy along with a wonderfully sweet labdanum and a tiny bit of cardamom. Almost immediately the smokiness (it's a woody smoke and probably is coming from the cedar) slowly starts to creep in along with a tiny bit of leather. I'd like to mention that I have let many people try 1740 and this stage seems to be completely different on everyone. On my skin the smokiness comes to the forefront and is combined with an extremely deep, warm, and visceral note that I can't seem to put my finger on. It's almost sexual and keeps bringing me back to the arm I sprayed it on time and time again; taking a deeper whiff every time. On others the smoky/visceral qualities don't take charge. Instead they sit quietly in the background as leather note starts to mix in. I can safely say that I'm glad that doesn't happen with me, as that is my favorite part of this fragrance. As time goes on the boozy quality dissipates, but the smoke, labdanum, and leather (along with that visceral note) hold strong. After the hours and hours this fragrance lasts it seems to take on a subtle, almost "womens boudoir-esque" quality as it begins to fade. Meaning that it almost smells as if you walked up to someone’s vanity and had a look around at all of the different types of makeup and perfume that were there. When I say this I mean it in the most positive and subtle way possible, as this is not a feminine fragrance.

    Overall I really like this one, but will say that it is not one I wear all of the time and usually reserve for special occasions or nights on the town. Silage and longevity are great with 1740 and one spray goes quite a long way.

    21st July, 2012

    Zut's avatar



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    Lotus by Yardley

    The Lotus I have known when I was a child in the late 50's and early 60's was the 1948 re-edition of the 1917 original. Back then, Lotus was very popular in the blue collar community where I lived. Not everybody could afford Chanel, Guerlain, Dior or other designer perfumes and many women would wear Avon and Yardley products because they were so inexpensive. Lotus was worn by women mostly but many men also wore it because there were so few men fragrances available in my part of the world. I remember some women saying they did not like Lotus because it was too masculine. They claimed it smelled like aftershave. In fact, Lotus was suitable for both sexes.

    I clearly remember what Lotus smelled like but I could not possibly describe it. It was flowery without being too extravagant or sophisticated. It was not too powdery nor too sweet. It was fresh yet not citrusy. Lotus was most certainly not an outstanding perfume but it was simple and unpretentious. Some people despise "drugstore perfumes" such as Avon and Yardley but if these "cheap" fragrances had not existed, many working-class men and women could never have experienced the joy of perfumes. Women in my family started with these low-cost fragrances. Once they got hooked, they went for more expensive brands. Thanks to Lotus and other drugstore fragrances, I am sure many women have acquired a taste for quality perfumes.

    21st July, 2012

    Swanky's avatar

    United States United States

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    Séxual Sugar Daddy by Michel Germain

    Apart from Deauville, I have not enjoyed Michel Germain's fragrances. Couple this with probably the worst name in contemporary designer perfumery and the stage was set for a major failure. Surprisingly, SSD (I can't bring myself to type the full name) is a nice offering from essentially a bargain house (be patient and they show up at Marshall's at substantial discounts within a year or two of launch). Mercifully for me the tobacco, leather and patchouli are the dominant notes on my skin with the grapefruit and cinnamon providing a bit of mildly sweet, fruity transparency. The leather, in particular, is an interesting rendition similar to that found in Spanish Leather by Truefitt & Hill or even in Egoiste. All in all, if you can get past the tone-deaf name and packaging this isn't a bad option for a modern masculine.

    21st July, 2012

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