Fragrance Reviews from August 2012

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    jarmine darno's avatar
    jarmine darno


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    HiM by Hanae Mori

    Randomly received a sample of the edt in Norstrom a few days ago, i think it qualifies as a "woody/spicy." Coincidentally I was there b/c i was interested in trying Gucci ph II (based on great reviews) as well as V&R spicebomb (sounded interesting). Just so happens that i found this Him by HM to be similar to both of those previously mentioned. At first smell i actually liked it better than the other two. Apparently the issue w/ Gucci ph II is longevity, and the issue with Spicebomb for me is smells like delicious food. Him by HM appears to have good longevity, and smells more like a fragrance and not as much like something i want to eat. Most likely I will grab a bottle of the 1.7 oz when its avaiilable, and also doesn't hurt that you can probably get HiM for a few bucks cheaper than the two others. Only thing is can't comment on the compliment factor, I haven't had a chance yet to see if other people like it on me. But i don't think i care b/c personally i enjoy it enough to own a small bottle.

    19 August, 2012 (Last Edited: 21st August, 2012)

    Weather86's avatar
    Weather86


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    Aventus by Creed

    About a month ago, I decided to add Creed Aventus to my collection. I have really enjoyed Millesime Imperial and Original Santal, so I decided to give Aventus a go since it’s received so much praise. Let me tell you, the hype is real. This is hands down, THE most complimented cologne I ever worn. I have tried a few batches in decants (C42B11Z01) and (S42B12A01), and got my hands on a 4oz bottle off of amazon for a good price (S42B12C01). Not only was the bottle I received real…but it was the best smelling batch I’ve yet to lay my nose on. Let me just give you one instance where this cologne impressed the hell out of me. I went to a bar last night to meet a girl I know, and her friend. Her friend (who I don’t even know) immediately told me that I smelled REALLY good! She turned to the guy she was with and said “you don’t smell bad, but you need to smell like him”. I was laughing inside, knowing how much positive feedback I had already received from this cologne. Well both girls repeatedly told me how great I smelled, and were literally sniffing my neck at a few points in the night (making a bunch of guys in the bar jealous). I got a text from the girl I knew the next day, saying she could still smell my cologne. Nuff said! If you’re hesitant to get this, get a small decant and get your nose on it. The first time I wore this, I thought it smelled weird. This is because it smelled like nothing I’ve ever smelled, or used prior. I received multiple compliments in that first wearing, and I was sold. I have had the privilege of owning a couple creeds now, and I can honestly say this one is THE best, and is a beast in the longevity/projection department. Guys, if you wear cologne for the ladies like I do, get this scent! You will not regret it!

    19 August, 2012 (Last Edited: 29 August, 2012)

    MonkeyBars's avatar
    MonkeyBars
    United States United States

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    Zino Davidoff by Davidoff

    Upon sampling this traditional classic for the first time, I was immediately struck by the resemblance to Guerlain's Jicky. Heritage is much sweeter with its powdery vanilla. Jicky eschews Zino's rose and would therefore never be confused with it, but I do believe they share an important conceptual underpinning: a CIVET overdose. Notice all the references to strange, dark, feral musk, rotting garbage, sexual trysts, and horseyards in the reviews below. Zino and Jicky share the classic civet-lavender-vanilla accord, where the honeylike aspects of civet and lavender mesh with, and the crisp herbaceousness of lavender and stonking animalic fur of civet temper, the sweetness of the vanilla.

    Zino's experienced perfumers decided to flank this central accord with a "pinker" rosey floral bouquet than Mssr. Guerlain, while amping up the patchouli, rich sandal, and cedar to balance their sweetness and maintain a structured masculinity. Also notable from the outset through the heart is a distinct clary sage presence, an accord which many find challenging with its vegetal intensity and almost sweaty overtones.

    The many perfectly-balanced ingredients are showcased in a different way depending on the time of day and other circumstances of a wearing; this is another intriguing quality of Zino. One day, it's dark spiky patchouli; next time, lovely blushing rose; after that, rich sandalwood and lean cedar; but next time it's warm, funky civet and sweet vanilla; next spray brings herbal lavender and clary sage, and so on.

    Jicky and Zino both feature a lemon-bergamot citrus accord and an array of light herbs at the opening, which is lovely, deep, beguiling, strange, and old-fashioned simultaneously.

    I really enjoy the olfactory profile of Zino, but wearing it is even more conflicting for me than wearing Jicky. It's old-fashioned -- I agree it's very 80s, but 1880s -- and really reminds me of an elderly gentleman. I'm not elderly so there's a bit of a mismatch. I can understand certain wearers wanting to go a bit more formal at Zino's inherent stuffiness.

    At the same time I am enthralled by the gutsy fragrance angle of an animalic overdose tempered by carefully chosen accords to mask the feral onslaught (cf. Jicky, Ungaro II, Baie de Genievre, Yatagan, Balenciaga pH) and truly enjoy every moment of this complex, moderately dense, and finely balanced creation. Certainly a thumbs-up, but wearability may not be its strong point.

    I understand the composition was hollowed out and cheapened a bit in reformulation (block letters rather than cursive on the bottle), but I have only tried the vintage. It certainly does not smell as inexpensive as it was.

    In the 90s, Ungaro II and Jaguar Mark II explored similar concepts further with a spared-down lavender-civet and a woodsier non-floral approach, respectively.

    19 August, 2012 (Last Edited: 09 December, 2012)

    rogalal's avatar
    rogalal
    United States United States

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    Voyage by Nautica

    A fairly standard aquatic in the 90's style. Kind of like a mix of CK One's lemon fabric softener with that ubiquitous salty green melon/cucumber/seaweed smell. It's technically very well put together (great projection and longevity, and it feels perfectly concentrated) and never resorts to that cheap metallic buzz or the fusty dank rotting melon smell that ruin so many aquatics. By the time the heart breaks through and you get a smell like watermelon-flavored laffy taffy, it's quite fun, if predictable and kind of silly.

    That being said, it reminds me of hundreds of other scents, and it's a genre that's implicitly tied to the 90's for me. It would be like if a band came out today that really wanted to sound like Limp Bizkit or the Spice Girls. Even if they did it really well, you'd just have to ask why in the world they'd go to so much trouble to recreate something that wasn't particularly good in the first place and that no one really cares about any more. I can't give a negative review because the quality is there, but I can't give a thumbs up because it's just not doing anything original and the stuff it smells like is past its prime anyway...

    20th August, 2012

    NoraA's avatar
    NoraA


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    Kiehl's Chinese Flowers Essence Oil by Kiehl's

    Exotic, unusual, distinctive fragrance. Purchased years ago from Kiehl's Pharmacy and always got positive comments and questions. Would love to find it again.

    20th August, 2012

    rbaker's avatar
    rbaker


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    Witness by Jacques Bogart

    Artimisia with orange, cinnamon and bergamot start it off, and beautifully, with a green-woody fir and a bit of cedar enhanced by a bit of patchouli in the later stages. After about an hour it retreats and is very close to my skin. The blending is masterful, a classic fougere that is quite discrete and stylish. Limited silage and projection after the first hour, and a total longevity of between two and three hours; otherwise a great nineties fragrance!

    20th August, 2012

    crono38's avatar
    crono38
    United States United States

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    Grey Flannel by Geoffrey Beene

    Horrible scent. It has a very sharp bitter note that is close to bringing me to tears, in a bad way. I'm pretty sure this will repel people.

    Scent 1
    Sillage 8
    Longevity 7

    20th August, 2012

    hickorysmoke's avatar
    hickorysmoke


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    Evolution by Rocawear

    Evolution smelled great on paper for a fragrance I would like - boozy, spicy, woods. On paper I got the Varvatos and the Le Male reference. However, on my skin it turned out to be another scent entirely and those comparisons evaporated. Evolution is not on the Varvatos level. The opening smelled like a sour punch because the boozy rum I got on paper smelled like gasoline on my skin. When the opening died and the incense and amber came in I began to get the Le Male vanilla note because somehow all of those other notes smell like vanilla. In the background I could still smell the sour punch/gasoline though. What a bummer for something I really liked on paper.

    20th August, 2012

    kvn's avatar
    kvn


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    Incense Rosé by Tauer

    This smells like someone dumped their incense ashes in my Hawaiian Punch. I do not like this at all.

    20th August, 2012

    hickorysmoke's avatar
    hickorysmoke


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    Black XS by Paco Rabanne

    The strawberry/fruity opening did not appeal to me and from there nothing really special. 1 million is a much better choice.

    20th August, 2012

    kvn's avatar
    kvn


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    Bulgari Black by Bulgari

    Vanilla and rubber. A warm, dark smell. Great if you're looking for a modern masculine scent. My wife loves this because "it doesn't smell like a perfume". It's not "chemically". It is kind of muted, though. That would be my one complaint. It may be a little too subtle.

    20th August, 2012

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    cacio
    United States United States

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    DXB Dubai by The Scent of Departure

    Possibly the strongest and strangest frag in a light and apologetic line, Dxb smells like a smooth and sedate version of Petroleum in the regular (and upscale) range of the same house. Petroleum mixes a strong mineral synth oud note with a potent marine one, a striking but unwearable combination that reproduces a damp cave, or an oily bilge. In Dxb, these notes are toned down, especially the marine one, which makes the perfume more wearable, if a little less bold. But the effect is still striking even at this lower intensity. I strongly dislike marine notes, so I will not wear it, but those who like aquatic frags may find this interesting, and more affordable than the $$$ Petroleum. Cute bottle too.

    20th August, 2012

    kvn's avatar
    kvn


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    Amouage Homage by Amouage

    It's hard to deny that this is a well-done fragrance. But, to me, it's just so dated. When I smell this I can't help but think of an old church deacon that's been wearing the same 3 or 4 suits every Sunday for 30 years. It's hard for me to imagine anyone under 50 pulling this off. I would never wear this, but I often get my sample out to smell and can certainly appreciate it.

    20th August, 2012

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    Khaibit108
    United States United States

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    Rose en Noir by Miller Harris

    Dark, gothy rose scents are my favorite type of fragrance, and this is one of the best ones I've tried. It doesn't have quite the sophistication, complexity, or longevity of l'Arte di Gucci, but it smells somewhat similar, especially after the top notes have faded off and it becomes mostly a deep, smoky, honeyed rose. I definitely prefer this one to Rose Barbare and Nahema. It deserves much more attention than it gets. I wish it lasted as long as Rose Barbare, but it's far far prettier.

    20th August, 2012

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    gimmegreen
    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Chrome by Azzaro

    With Chrome, Azzaro created the perfect functional going-on-holiday-leaving-my-brain-behind scent that was watery and cool with a nice sour citric edge and which held up well under sun and higher temperatures. That is the extent of its charms and it was enough for the millions who bought by the bucketful.
    It annoys me with its out-of-the shower cleanness, its poverty of ambition (especially as the citrus seems to be half-way decent) and the aura of an outdoorsy bore it projects. Base is the usual synthetic smelling woodsy herbal soup common to mainstream ‘masculines’.

    20th August, 2012

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    gimmegreen
    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Honour Man by Amouage

    The main lesson of Honour Man is that there’s pepper and there’s pepper. There’s the stuff that gets up your nose and makes you sneeze and then there’s this which makes the nostrils flare with bliss, a complex dancing thing that introduces a lovely, light and pretty classy geranium and vetiver accord. A sharp frankincense-cedar accord keeps the wearer on their toes. I’ll agree with those who complain that perfumes like Honour Man represent the mainstreaming of a line known for OTT riches; this does not proclaim difference, but then it doesn’t need to. This is mainstream in the most suave and distinguished way, a perfume of restraint and elegance. The whole experience of wearing it is clean, cool like a fresh shirt and pretty enticing. I felt I could happily wear it day after day, until I did just that and found my interest flagging. The drydown is curiously fougere-like with a wisp of laundry musks trailing around it. My main grouch is that it wears pretty close to the skin and has a half-day life; can’t justify the expense for that.

    20th August, 2012

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    gimmegreen
    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Little Stars by Olympic Orchids

    Opens like a chest embrocation, with a spiciness and hints of ylang emerging from it. There’s also some undergrowth greenness, a forest floor feel, which would be most tempting if it weren’t for the overriding impression of essential oils. Might work better as a soap (of the anti-bacterial variety).

    20th August, 2012

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    gimmegreen
    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Oriental Lounge by Different Company

    The smell of curry leaves defies description – pungent, herbal, metallic, somewhat caramelized; and yet someone reading those words would probably be completely surprised if they sniffed the real thing for the first time. No other scent comes close. To me it is the major chord of South Indian cuisine – the tempering of many dishes with curry leaves and mustard seeds in hot oil, to which additional tang is added by tamarind, and subtlety and creaminess by fresh coconut. The surface of the leaf has volatile oils which jump up and dance upon heating.
    How on earth would Celine Ellena integrate this note that clearly belongs in the kitchen rather than upon the body? By masking. The curry leaf is glued firmly to the bergamot and together they approximate cigarette smoke – not terribly appealing if you already share house space with a smoker. Underneath is a base of tonka and amber which takes gradual steps forward all the time, and the fascinating bit of this fragrance is how this sweetness interacts with the florals, spice and woods over its evolution. Ultimately it’s all a bit too lived in for me, like yesterday’s perfume on yesterday’s shirt – I’d rather put it in the wash.

    20th August, 2012

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    gimmegreen
    Netherlands Netherlands

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    Sables by Annick Goutal

    There is this lovely family-run perfume shop where I go and buy giddy florals and ransack samples. The mama of the shop must look at me and think, ‘What a waste!’, because she inevitably gives me a few big bold bruisers to sample as well. Sables is one of them.
    Its audacity is about the only positive I can think of.
    Certain smells are shaped by culture. In India, where I grew up, we eat fenugreek greens – they’re bitter and pungent and delicious. Afterwards, when you sweat, it smells like Sables. I have yet to find an Indian who will claim to love the pungent scent of fenugreek sweat. I suppose the comparison is with asparagus-influenced urine – interesting, but you wouldn’t rush to douse yourself with it.
    The first few seconds of Sables promises much more – a ravishing mix of herbals lifting the sweaty immortelle; but after that it’s all the things people say: sugar, bacon, maple syrup, fenugreek. To which I’d add a salty edge (I suppose the bacon covers that). The pepper in the mix is a further annoyance and the drydown is just a stale version of the heart. Its rich and piercing spiciness seems to have been an object lesson to Serge Lutens.
    Not for me. Give me a different version of audacious.

    20th August, 2012

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    Oh_Hedgehog
    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Tuscan Leather by Tom Ford

    This smells like the shiny, taut leather interior of a new car. Some claim to detect a cocaine note; I'm far too angelic to be able to comment. There is the dusty waft of thyme though, which I wish had been amplified, and the hint of cigarette stubs. But all this is moot: Tuscan Leather is wrecked on the teeth of an unnaturally sweet raspberry note that refuses to perish and whose inclusion I find utterly bizarre.

    20th August, 2012

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    drseid
    United States United States

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    Lys Méditerranée by Editions de Parfums Frederic Malle

    Lys Mediterranee opens with a brief oceanic mist before a very subtle angelica makes an appearance. The angelica hangs around in the background, just barely perceptible when a gorgeous lily of the valley note emerges and remains through the heart, soon coupling with a co-starring water lily to give a nice presentation of lilies right after a spring rain. Joining the angelica in its supporting role is a very faint orange blossom. The base is a light clean musk that melds with the lily but never calls attention to itself staying true to the linear and subtle nature of the scent. Projection is above average and longevity is excellent.

    Lys Mediterranee is a beautiful composition that lily of the valley and lily fans in general should really appreciate. The angelica is so subtle that at first I did not detect it, instead focusing on the lily of the valley, but on my second wearing I not only noticed it, but can now really appreciate the skill in how Flechier uses it to support the muguet. On the whole Lys Mediterranee does not change much once you get past the brief oceanic stage at the top, but it is probably the best lily focused composition I have smelled to date. From a guy's perspective I probably would prefer smelling this on a lady than wearing it myself, but wearable and wonderful it certainly is. Lys Mediterranee is another strong release from the house of Frederic Malle and earns an excellent 4 stars out of 5.

    20th August, 2012

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    rbaker


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    Furyo by Jacques Bogart

    Wow - the initial hit of lavender, bergamot, artemisia and cinnamon is amazing, strong and with a touch of non-sweet fruitiness that is unique. Then the rose comes out, followed by a beautiful patchouli with vetiver clearly discernible on my skin. Added civet in the drydown give it a darker note. Shifty Bat's succinct summary "simultaneously dirty and clean, fresh and dank, bitter and sweet" describes this scent very well. The last hours bring out some oakmoss, establishing this fragrance as a fougere, albeit a very complex and unorthodox one, a floral-musk-vetiver fougere so to speak. The last hours are pure beautiful fougere with supercharged oakmoss; a bit like Revillon's French Line on steroids. Added aldehydes gives it a bit of a Chanel feel at times. The components are blended masterfully. Good silage, great projection, and a phenomenal longevity of over twelve hours. This is one of the greatest fragrances I have experienced for a long time, a Vintage Tabarome of the 1980s so to speak.

    20th August, 2012

    Darvant's avatar
    Darvant
    Italy Italy

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    Eau de Cartier by Cartier

    A well crafted, fresh and subtle combination of aqueous elements, flowers and musk with a soft woody base. The juice is averagely sharp, clean and elegant with its sort of joyful approach. Soft floral notes on the side of astringent citrus start to open the evolution and i immediately catch in the air a discreet interaction of violet leaves, subtle herbs, musk and cedarwood. The initial traditional link of bergamot and lavender imprints a classic vibe (lemony and barely aromatic), the implementation of the note of yuzu turns out a sort of eastern calming "pond" effect, while a touch of ambergris in the base, on the side of cedarwood and hints of prickly spices (pepper?) grants to us a touch of final dustiness. The smell itself is like a barely soapy combination of lemon and violets with really moderate mildness and detergent-neutral musky undertones (one of the Cartier's landmarks). Really  elegant, charming and comforting scent.

    20th August, 2012

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    TheWickedOne
    United States United States

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    Tombstone by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab

    This is my most favorite vanilla fragrance - the cake-y-ness of the vanilla is nicely foiled by the sassafrass and the cedar - I think I need more than 2 backup bottles.

    20th August, 2012

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    TheWickedOne
    United States United States

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    Jeux de Peau by Serge Lutens Les Salons du Palais Royal Shiseido

    My first full bottle of Serge Lutens - but will not be my last! The best way I can describe this is as foody without smelling foody. I can smell the bread, I can smell the jam and the fruit, but it does not come across at all like cake or cookies, just like the best bakery you have ever been in that doesn't happen to stock anything in chocolate.

    20th August, 2012

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    alfarom
    Italy Italy

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    Santal Wood by Montale

    Montale does a sport fragrance. They have to be kidding us. A generic opening of fresh woods enriched by the typical sporty-aquatic vibe that we're experiencing in most of the current designer's masculines of the last ten years. Pepper and juniper included...Take the worst part of Gucci Envy for Men and mix it with any sport fragrance available on the market.

    Things get definitely better during the drydown where Santal Wood verges towards the transparent woody-spicy territories already seen in Costume National Pour Homme and, say, Ormonde Man. The base is actually nice, not overly synthetic, radiant and well blended but, overall, the fragrance doesn't have the ability to poperly stand out.

    Not as bad as I initially thought yet somewhat of little interest.

    20th August, 2012

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    muskydusky
    United States United States

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    Dirty English by Juicy Couture

    Pleasantly surprised myself by really enjoying this. Too bad it goes bye bye real fast. Smells so good I can't hold it against this cologne though.

    20th August, 2012

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    Old Werewolf


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    Grey Flannel by Geoffrey Beene

    Grey Flannel starts out with a very crisp, greens, lemon grass aroma. The middle notes are smooth. The basenote is a really musky sandalwood on me. It lasts through the day. Very nice.

    20th August, 2012

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    muskydusky
    United States United States

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    Gucci Guilty pour Homme by Gucci

    A model told me I smelled really good when I had this on, so....yeah.

    20th August, 2012

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    Old Werewolf


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    Montana Black Edition by Montana

    This is great. I just acquired a bottle. I sprayed a wee bit on my wrists just before going shopping with my GF. She said she didn't like the idea of me leaving home smelling so good. I really like the incense and leather dry-down.

    20th August, 2012

    Showing 631 to 660 of 1093.