Bandit has been called the edgiest of "butch leathers," and I suppose it is, but for me it always enters the room with a wink and a healthy capacity for enjoying its calculated effects. Bandit's bitter notes are interwoven with indolic floral airs - glorious discord, fragrant (and flagrant) irony!
Comparing the 2015 EDP with a vintage extrait - which might be too much a case of apples v. oranges, even for Bandit - I find the vintage juice much more bitter, with accords that are smoother but at the same time harder to pin down; nevertheless, the core personality of this reference leather fragrance is intact and alive in its current iteration. Bandit will always be among my favorite leathers, but it is so much more than that: like all noteworthy incarnations, it is greater than the sum of its parts.
Dangerously sensual.BANDIT has the most wonderful scent of sex appeal.There's something very passionate about this perfume that men follow intensive you around every time you wear it.It is a perfume for the mature,unique and impertinent women who knows where she is going. Sultry,Classic,Seductive,Attractive,Intriguing, Leathery and Headstrong Passion.
All about BANDIT is an intoxicating blend of galbanum,bergamot,aldehydes,vetiver,oakmoss,civet, patchouli and especially leather.the dry down has a deep alluring and animalistic that leaves an impression and makes it for women are not afraid of their sensuality and also modern women who feel nostalgic about glamorous eras past.
Totally You can smell leather for a long time.BANDIT is perfect for COLD winter nights with someone you would like to seduce.It is not absolutely Feminine and i found a masculine characteristic in it but if any woman wear it,reminds me a Femme Fatale with hot emotion so i don't recommend it for the faint of heart at all.test it first before buying.
Longevity?Superb on my skin.
Take Miss Dior (Originale), add a dash of Kouros, a twist of lemon... and voila, you have Bandit (current version EDP), well just about.
BUT, as Bandit is the predecessor of these modern classics, all credit must be given to Bandit as the true masterpiece.
I eagerly smelt Bandit for the first time recently after reading many reviews... I was expecting something very strong, smoky, leathery, a touch abrasive and very polarising. I found none of these traits. instead, I found a very subtle fragrance that stays close to the skin. To start, there is a blast of lemon shadowed by the earthy muskiness / green cleanness blend reminiscent of Kouros before it dries down to something very very similar to the dry down of Miss Dior Originale (the thieves!), but a bit less musky and a bit less sweet. I get no leather, no animalic tones, no engine oil, no femme-fatale in kick ass boots.
Instead, Bandit is the skin of a woman with quiet confidence, chic sophistication, but strong independence and originality and a penchant for all things new and unexplored. This lady refuses to be type-cast, cannot be stereotyped, she is simultaneously classic, current and avant-guarde.
This fragrance is stellar and such a perfect blend of its components, that the components cease to exist, instead melding into one single note, that of the skin of the woman every woman want to be. Divine!
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Critics lament the decline of masculine fragrances, but ah, how women’s scents have fallen! From the heights of Piguet’s Bandit to the depths of Herrera’s atrocious Chic. Would anyone make a scent like Bandit today? Certainly no mainstream perfumer, and most assuredly not for women.
Bandit is a bold, confrontational leather scent on a scale that rivals Knize Ten. It’s magnificent birch tar opening takes on a salty animalic pungency that few modern scents can match. It smells like and amplified version of a man’s skin after some light exertion in the sun, but before the reek of testosterone-fueled sweat sets in. Spice and wood notes temper the mammalian flesh accord, but never go so far as to prettify it. If anything, Bandit breaks the butch leather scent mode by becoming more animalic and not less as the accessory notes pile on. Eventually Bandit dries down to reveal plenty of vetiver, moss, musk, and briny labdanum, the last of which maintains the scent’s animalic leather aspect to the very end.
All I can say is thank goodness it’s been reinstated!
Robert Piquet - Bandit
The recent Bandit is a brushed off, cleaner and too much weight-loosed version of the original. It pretty much has the same contours, curves and forms but lacks heavily in its inner-content and weight that its carrying. Less rich and abundant, less natural flow of the ingredients. The original version walked the thinnest scent-line possible between its raw, vulgar and dirty leathery-animalic sexappeal, pure lust, almost scary, and its poetic lovelettery, shy-romantic elegance. Bandit is two perfumes in one, both with very different personalities, character and appearance. The way that Germaine Cellier managed to blend these polar scents-profiles seamlessly, without any bumps or hick-ups, perfectly smooth, is one the biggest triumphs in modern perfumery, to my taste. It smells so very 'simple' and light and fresh, greeny in its opening, so dark, sultry and deep-voiced from its real musk-base. So tasteful and easy likable that you want to drink it- its sure has a gourmand-factor- in the sense that it smells to be drunk. Like the bouquet's invitation of a very exquisite wine. Although the notes really can get along with each other, at the same time you can feel a tension, like there is a very fragile bound that beholds the peace. It projects a disturbance, and at the same time a sense of true love and tenderness. It communicates, it breathes, it lives. One of the best perfumes ever created, in its old formula in parfum-strength that is...A timeless masterpiece.
28th April, 2014 (last edited: 18th May, 2014)
Guys, I have the pure parfum with the box with BANDIT in capital letters that was produced in the 90s by Alfin. The one that the review below me claims does not smell good...
What on earth? I think it's gorgeous! Although it is the pure parfum, it actually smells exactly like vintage Bandit EDT. They smell just the same to me. Both of them - vintage Bandit EDT & my Bandit pure parfum produced by Alfin - are lacking in the bitter green, high pitched feminine topnotes of the vintage, original pure parfum concentration. But it's lovely just the same, and 100% identifiably Bandit.
If you love those bitter green notes, seek out the old, vintage pure parfum. But if you are not as crazy about those feminine, high-pitched green notes, then you should seek out the vintage EDT or the pure parfum produced by Alfin (which has BANDIT in all capital letters) as those are lacking in the bracing, screeching green notes.
27th December, 2013 (last edited: 29th March, 2014)
...In the USA, this fragrance has always been associated with Parisian chic and exquisite taste. Not surprisingly, Piguet's Bandit appeared during the world premiere of an American romantic comedy called "Made in Paris" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Made_in_Paris) at The Chicago Theatre on January 28, 1966: a vial of Bandit was handed out to the ladies for the first three days of the movies run in Chicago...
...Currently, there is a big confusion about this fragrance.
EDT and Parfum versions of Bandit had been made in France, 2, Avenue Jeanne 92600 Asnieres.
They are the Vintage versions of Bandit.
Their bottles are made of transparent glass.
The EDT and Parfum concentrations are really different!
EDT is more aggressive, masculine, definitely a unisex fragrance.
I've read here: http://lessenteurs.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/bandit-by-robert-piguet-out-of-germaine-cellier/ that Robert Piguet
had allegedly asked Germaine Cellier (the first woman in the history of perfumery [Bandit was her first creation]) to create a scent for his lover, a wild young man known as "Le Bandit", very soon after killed in a car accident.
It does smell like engine oil a little bit, but at the same time, unlike contemporary versions of Bandit (see below), it has a prominent rose note that smooths the aggressive accords.
Interestingly enough, right before Bandit had been officially released (1944), Piguet collaborated with a French photographer Raymond Voinquel on a creative project dedicated to the launching of Piguet's first perfume line "Bandit". Well, the result wasn't really haute couture: the photographs (see one of those attached here)
depicted a handsome young man, a prisoner with handcuffs, who had a rose flower tattoo on his chest! The original name of that project was "Le prisonnier à la rose, projet pour le parfum de Piguet, "Bandit", 1943". It wasn't publicly advertised, it was more for Piguet's close friends, like Jean Marais, Jean Cocteau, and Pablo Picasso.
...I'd totally choose "Bandit" by Cat's Eyes as a soundtrack for Bandit advertisement: http://youtu.be/41qdhSkQ49Q?
Please note that the oldest versions of Bandit EDT have a high concentration of perfume oils; this is why the content of alcohol in them measures as 80°.
As for the Parfum concentration, it is a very beautiful, dark, three-dimensional, feminine scent.
In 1945-1947 Bandit had been marketed in the U.S.A. as BRIGAND.
"BRIGAND in U.S. is in every respect identical with that known as BANDIT in the rest of the world."
For those of you, who have no access to a vintage version of Bandit/Brigand Parfum, please try Salvador Dali, a classic eastern chyprée fragrance created in 1983 by Alberto Morillas for the perfume house of Salvador Dali?; this scent has a very similar aura.
Marlene Dietrich and Edith Piaf were long-time clients of the house of Robert Piguet (in fact, it was Piguet who made for Piaf her trademark little black dress) and wore Bandit.
Remember about roses and Bandit? ...Here's Edith Piaf with her signature song "Life in Rosy Hues" (La Vie en rose, 1947): http://youtu.be/ZxByDgpLmss?
A long-time muse of Pierre Cardin and a world-acclaimed ballet's monstre sacre Maya Plisetskaya: http://youtu.be/HzR0aq9fDZY, dispite her friendship and numerous collaborations with Pierre Cardin and Yves Saint Laurent (whose houses have created enough iconic perfumes), her whole life was and still is wearing one!!! fragrance - Bandit de Robert Piguet. In honor of her recent anniversary, current owners of the Robert Piguet Parfums have issued exclusively for Maya Plisetskaya a bottle of Bandit parfum with Plisetskaya's initials on it.
Interestingly, a close friend of Robert Piguet and Germaine Cellier, Jean Cocteau, was also a good friend of a notable French poet Louis Aragon and his wife, a Russian-born French writer Elsa Triolet. And it was Elsa who introduced Maya Plisetskaya to Bandit in the 50s. Elsa Triolet was the sister of Lilya Brik, a mistress and common-law wife of a prominent Russian poet-futurist Vladimir Mayakovsky. "The muse of Russian avant-garde", Lilya Brik, was known for her salon in Moscow, where the creative elite from all over the world would meet to discuss art, literature, politics and themselves. Maya Plisetskaya was a frequent guest in the Brik's house. In her book I, Maya Plisetskay (Yale University Press) she describes her first introduction to Bandit: "December 31... Evening... The Aragons are already there (at the Brik's house)... The holiday table, crowded with an overabundance of delicacies. ...There was a gift near each place setting. A bottle of Robert Piguet's Bandit perfume near mine. Next to Shchedrin's (Rodion Shchedrin is a famous Russian composer and the husband of Plisetskaya) - Dior cologne and Stravinsky's latest French recording. Elsa Yuryevna (Triolet), Santa Claus, has brought it all from Paris. Ever since, I have preferred the scent of Bandit to all other French perfumes. The fragrance is marvelous, and the memory is dear."
At the very end of the 80s-beginning of the 90s an American company called Alfin Inc. bought the brand Robert Piguet. They cheapen the formula of Bandit and changed some notes in the fragrance (their bottles are of black color with a golden cap and labeled "BANDIT" [all capital letters]). I'm not commenting on that stuff, ok (it's just not good).
Then, at the end of the 90s, yet another American company called Fashion Fragrances and Cosmetics, LTD bought the perfume house of Robert Piguet. They knew that lots of people were really disappointed by the reformulated version of Bandit, so the new owners went to Paris and found the original formula of Bandit. Since then, they started Bandit production using the original formula and high-quality materials (their bottles are of black color with a black cap and labeled "bandit" [all small letters, like on vintage bottles, please see the pic below for comparison]). Their products are super-close to the original (their Bandit Parfum is almost the same!), but because of current IFRA restrictions on the use of oakmoss (it is a potential allergen) and animal materials, they substituted these ingredients by synthetic chemical analogs (they smell really really similar, but a good nose can still feel some difference). Moreover EDT is not produced anymore. Now you can buy EDP and Parfum concentrations.
They keep the same rule though: the lower concentration is unisex, while the higher one is feminine.
For Bandit's fans, I'd recommend to have current and vintage versions of the fragrance. I have vintage EDT and vintage Parfum as well as current EDP and current Parfum versions of Bandit; all 4 are different from each other to some degree and evoke distinct olfactory feelings.
It's the perfect Autumn fragrance!: http://youtu.be/K9-_-IngjKE
Cons: Average people will not understand this fragrance and even might have a negative reaction, but I guess it's a problem of the people :-)"
Flower Power Leather
Great take on dry leather, floral and green ...a very unisex scent much more than the feeble Chanel Cuir de Russie, no barnyard note here, for leather freaks a must!
Pros: huge sillage and duration
Not as it once was, somewhat tamed, but still a classic leather. Considering when it was launched (1944) it was far ahead of its time I think. Hugely influential. I see its presence in every other leather around, from Aramis to Aromatics and beyond. A wonderful fragrance which I wear with pleasure and joy (although I NEVER layer!!)
This has to be one of the most androgynous fragrances ever made. On me, the leather note is a little hard at first but soon enough the not-too-sweet powdery carnation dry down balances everything out. Funny enough, everyone around me thinks I am wearing a very masculine fragrance. One of my neighbours used to wear Bandit some 30 years ago. She smelled absolutely wonderful. Surprisingly, when she wore it, Bandit became spicy, ambery, animal and unmistakenly feminine. It had this mischievous touch without being too in-your-face and I am sure this is exactly what the perfumer intended.
Bandit - timeless clasic! The perfect classic. Suitable for all seasons, all ages.I will be happy to wear it.
I've smelt it for the first time a couple of years ago while
visiting a niche boutique placed in the town center of Bologna and i don't know exactly about which formulation it was (although i suppose it was the EDP version). The first impression was about a dark, rough, herbal-aromatic and mossy-leathery chypre coming from an other age and due to be worn by man and woman even if the scales was leaning on the feminine side (too much following fruity-floral sophistication and smell of deodorized and slightly sweated arm-pit). The first impression in general is strange because some elements of dissonance are a bit disturbing (at least under my nose), may be the excess of alcohol and aldehydes (the initial projection is nuclear), the overly prominent and aggressive animal-leathery and smoky notes already rising from the back and blended with a forceful whirl of citrus (mostly orange), dark spices, mint, vetiver and greens, may be because of a sort of tar undertone over a similar cola kind of sparkling coolness. In this phase the scent with its old-school feel smells like a blend of YSL Rive Gauche and Aramis with a touch of the fruity-spicy-floral temperament of the more refined Mitsouko. The initial blast of neroli, fruit, citrus and spices reminds me a bit the vintage starting chord of Youth Dew which is anyway a much more feminine, spicy, floral, smooth, sunny and vintage fragrance with a less woodsy and leathery temperament. In the confusion i smell patchouli and the duo rose-jasmine plus carnation that in this phase are angular and dry in perception before evolving in a smoothing sweet effect on the final mossy leather. The moderate sweetness comes mostly from the floral-spicy middle phase. You need time before that each element takes its place and a bit of leathery velvet emerges clean from the tornado. As soon as the roughness fades the final development is a dark-mossy leather plus some woods, smoothing amber with the animalic and nasty notes of civet and castoreum and the bold earthiness of patchouli. In this phase the fragrance turns out leathery, mysterious, bold, slightly earthy and floral with the pungency of the civet note. Very complex. Classic, leathery and autoritative fragrance.
30th September, 2011 (last edited: 12th February, 2013)
This is interesting in an old-school, classy aromatic way. The floral notes are attractive, rich and heady. There are sophisticated spices and hints of leather to add intriguing notes. The scent reminds me of Trussardi (White), with its cream florals, spices and leathers. Probably Trussardi copied this original. The scent is not too sweet, a man certainly could wear it. The spices are complex, mysterious and dark. Yet there is also a cool, clear aspect which I associate with clove and which gives a masculine, barbershop aspect. Carnation adds another dimension to the clove. I'll reiterate: this is not a sweet scent. The dry-down is dry, spicy, slightly dirty... and quite intriguing. The musk and patchouli are (thankfully) restrained.
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I smelled Bandit. At Bergdorf's of all places. Can ANYONE pull this one off? Even I couldn't wear this (and I can put on two sprays of Angel and five minutes later get into a crowded elevator). To me, Bandit smells like an old dirty leather rag, that someone sprayed a flower scented oven cleaner on, and then used to clean an old barbecue. It is truly rank. I was trying to hide the smell on my hand from other people on the subway. This fragrance is so out there, I'm giving it a thumbs up, although I couldn't ever bring myself to wear it again.
A review of the reissued 1999 Eau de Toilette:
Germaine Cellier’s brutal WWII leather chypre is often compared with the earlier Knize 10 (1924); however a closer relative is found in Guerlain, whose Derby (1985) is really Bandit without the piercings or attitude problem. Bandit’s whip-cracking greens (galbanum, vetiver, oakmoss), pungent florals (tuberose, jasmine, heaps of artemesia) and moral turbulence (castoreum, ashtray, leather) make it the greenest, bitterest – the grittiest – leather around. There is also a sour muskiness that once in every ten breaths suggests goats cheese or dusty bin liners dragged from an attic. It blows smoke in the face of Cuir de Russie and every other stiff-necked perfume that employs leather as a high-class talisman for warding off the gritty and the dangerous. And while I’m not sure that Bandit is a bitch, she definitely has spunk. It’s a sexy, edgy, thoroughly urban, masterpiece.
I never expected to fall in love with this fragrance, but here I am finding a new love for leather-based scents.
Bandit is definitely not a shy fragrance. This wants to be loud and I'm happy to let it do its thing. The composition is mostly sharp green notes, with surprisingly lots of soft flowers and rich, hard leather notes. This is truly an intense olfactory pleasure in one sniff.
In truth this fragrance isn't as strong as you might think, it's not girly that's for sure but it's still very feminine. This is for a woman of confidence and strength, not necessarily a raunchy woman, just a woman that knows what she wants.
Like alcohol, Bandit is strong and fierce like a glass of straight vodka, not those watered down, lolly-flavoured vodka beverages.
Overall I still cannot believe that I love this dry, smokey, leathery and almost bitter fragrance. Bandit truly is a masterpiece.
Intense citrus and greener than green top notes, then a violet floral heart. I was waiting for the leather basenote....and waiting. Nothing. What a shame.
My skin chemistry seems to eliminate leather notes, leaving the supporting, less interesting accords behind. This only seems to happen if the leather is in the drydown. I'm allowed brief moments of leathery pleasure in Chanel's CdR and Dzing! as the leather makes a welcome appearance from the get go. But they to they disappear on me in the drydown, leaving either a rather dull floral or simply nothing.
EDIT: OK, I'm revising my review from neutral to a thumbs up. I've got over the fact that I struggle to find the leather. This stuff is greeeeeeeen on me in a rather sharp and bitter way. Its also a sillage monster, so I go easy on that trigger.
What perplexes me is the seemingly numerous formulations of this stuff. I can only get the EdP here in London which smells good. Am I right in thinking there is more than one formulation of the EdP? Are the EdT and pure parfum very different?
Anyway, the EdP I've tried is excellent.
15th May, 2011 (last edited: 06th August, 2011)
Unfortunately I've never had the chance to smell the original version of Bandit, but I can say this reformulation is still HUGE! A majestic striaghtforward bitter leather chypre and one of the few in the genre to absolutely stand out. It opens with a bold and strong animalic note that dominates the whole scent throughout. Green notes, white flowers and woods, joined by slight spices in the drydown, soften the general harshness and severity. A perfect creation, unique and surely a trendsetter in the leather/chypre genre. Bandit is a serious contendant to other masterpieces of the same family such as Knize Ten or Cuir De Russie but where the latters strike as luxurious and enveloping, the former is definitely among the most severe and "cold" compositions available on the market. A masterpiece and an all time favorite.
A must try for anybody!
02nd April, 2011 (last edited: 30th November, 2011)
Bandit is a woman who loves to take control of the opposite sex with one scent Leather! not fooled around with
leather not synthtic uncut muskiness that makes it's appeal for ages.
So what makes Bandit special? of course
we have the main ingredient leather what makes it diffent then other leather scents is the supporting florals that makes it a bit of an Feminine touch with the powdery feel of violets dries to a underpining of Spicy texture of Carnation and jasmine with it's secretive aura is a mysterious
personality that rarely exsist in today's perfumery and veltet feel of
I also admire is that green notes that consists of artemesia not listed are a bit of grass and the freshness of Aldehydes adds to the sharp and clean scent that is unique to Bandit.
The Drydown is a dark rasianish drydown of myyrah adds to the esoteric feel the warm amber with it's sweet raisenish scent blends to make it a bit sweetish
with patches of musk makes it a bit masculine The Amimalistic properties
of Civet makes it primal and untamed.
And with the mossy finish of oakmoss
and the elusive undertone of Patchouli ends with an earthy finish.
This is not a Girlie Girl scent not for a woman who does not want make waves or shy quiet passive personality this is
an scent that demands repect and your
09th October, 2010 (last edited: 14th October, 2010)
When I first tried Bandit one thing came to mind: All-night Diners.
I wasn’t sure where my mind was going with this; did I think it smelled cheap? (it does have a watered down base). Do I associate it with the smoking section? (yes, a little)
But then it clicked. In college I waitressed at a 24-hour diner, along with a sixty year old woman who came in every evening to work the night shift. I think she wore Bandit.
She was quick witted, loved her cigarette breaks and knew how to take late night customers in stride. My shift overlapped hers for a few hours, which I always looked forward to.
One night a family came in and told me it was their son’s birthday. This meant they wanted the free, 3-bite birthday cake we handed out. After their meal I went to the freezer to get the cake, and realized we were out.
Panicked, I told my co-worker my problem. Without batting an eye my Bandit wearing partner in crime placed a 12 oz paper cup upside down on a plate, covered it with a creative stream of whip cream, decorated it with cherries and topped it off with a burning candle (which she lit with her own cigarette lighter.) “There’s your cake,” she said.
To me Bandit is the smell of competence.
I get a combination of perfume and sweat, sometimes the perfume reminds me of leather, other times soap. And I think I too am falling in love. I have three comments to make about this perfume, bearing on its time of birth in 1944.
(a) It was released in wartime occupied France when soap was hard to get hold of, for some people with the 'wrong' ration cards impossible. That unwashed smell it releases and then covers over could have sent all sorts of messages, none of them to do with sex. It said 'outlaw' at a time when outlaw meant death.
(b) If ever a perfume was designed to repel the Aryan occupiers while attracting Frenchmen, this is it.
(c) I have never seen these comments or anything like them made before. Is there a politico-historical critique of perfume someone could point me to or have I just invented it?
I only own the reformulated EDP. It is a dark and brooding, dry floral/leather chypre that works well for me as a masculine scent. It can be a bit intense, so as long as I go easy on it, Bandit is quite exceptional, very unusual and captivating. I have yet to smell the vintage Bandit, but from what I understand the current formulation was the best that could be done given the fact that the original formula was built on perfume bases and specialties that are long since out of production.
Top note: aldehydes, galbanum, bergamot, orange, artemesia, neroli
Heart note: orris, jasmine, rose, carnation, gardenia, ylang, coconut
base note: leather, patchouli, myrrh, musk, civet, amber, oakmoss, vetiver.
One could easily make a case for this being the embodiment of raffishness. The leather presence is less about sexual domination and machismo, more kidskin gloves and glorious floral decorations. It is not beautiful, but charming, not witty, but charming too. It has the camphoric, leather and floral hallmarks of Knize Ten, but Bandit is much less of an egotist than its Austrian friend. Despite its undoubted potency, it pulls its punches and allows its sheer extravagance to be the major talking point. I think I may very well be in love
I will wear Bandit forever. There is the newest formulation that carries accreditation on the side of the box confirming that it is the closest to the original version and it is amazing (EdP). Goes on sharp and rather vegetal with a floral mix, eventually morphs to a lovely, sexy, animalic (civet?) drydown that never fails to make my husband weak in the knees. I pity those who steer away from "strong" "perfumey" perfumes in favour of insipid chemical mishmash that is gender neutral. If someone doesn't like Bandit, they couldn't possibly like me. Step aside. By the way, the EdT has been discontinued due to multitudinous complaints about longevity. I had a sample of it and it was gorgeous as well, it seemed to be straight leather and then civet (my two faves), but gone in an hour. A previous reviewer listed a number on his inferior bottle of Bandit. The number on mine (the latest and most 'authentic' version is 77464). Everyone should at least try this masterpiece.
This is definitely a leather jacket or thigh high leather boot scent. I too love the absence of sweetness. I go for this when it's too cold for Chanel 19. I'm not saying they smell similar but they both suit me well. Bandit can be heavy in warm weather.
'Dirtier' than vintage Cabochard...its almost-twin.
When I first applied Bandit, it went on my skin quietly enough. Ten seconds later...WHOOSH!! It's raw and rough and exhilarating. The leather is strong stuff, with the queasy note of dirty engine oil that normally sets my stomach on edge, only here I can't get enough. There's something meaty and savory going on here. Despite that, this stuff isn't unbearably butch, like I was afraid it might be. I can't pick out the listed notes of jasmine, rose, and neroli individually, but there is enough floral stuff softening the leather and vetiver to make this actually quite comfortable to wear. The experience of wearing Bandit is bracing, but never unsettling.
It's a miracle of absence: a classic (probably meant as a feminine, but in fact unisex) with NO fruit, NO floral, NO sweetness of any kind. I can just about imagine a guy wearing this, but it is so fierce that I imagine most men would find it overwhelming. Although others detect birch tar and generally leather-like notes, to me this is a sharp, delightfully bitter number, piney green, loads of labdanum, vetiver, and a prickly saltiness (that's the labdanum, I guess) which smells to me not quite of sweat but of some plant of the marine littoral - seaweed or kelp, perhaps. In short, an extreme version of Guerlain's Vetiver and closely related to the bitter green chypre of Eau du Soir. I am surprised that some think it too strong: I have to respray after about 4-5 hours (Vetiver and Eau du Soir last all day, by contrast). The drydown is softer and slightly 'prettier' than the top and middle, and I can often get a fleeting whiff of it on my wrist late at night in bed - heaven! Bandit is a stand-and-deliver highwayman of unforgettable charisma and unknown identity, always eluding capture. I may be the girl who runs away to live with the brigands!
15th December, 2009 (last edited: 11th March, 2010)
Rough, forceful, coarse...and other synonyms from ".doc" - and I like :) A few days ago I read the thread about "dark chypres" and this is the ultimate IMHO. My bottle opens with a beautiful flowery something, but like 10 seconds thereafter the roughness comes through. At first I though wt* but I subsequently "got" it. This is how I like my fragrances - take no prisoners. Mine is the EdP of a formulation I don't really care to know. It just gives me that oomph that is needed in this wardrobe. It takes a while to get to the drydown, but when it does, I'm happy I got myself a bottle of Bandit. Give me more!!!
Real Bandit is fantastic and has been described at great length by much better writers than me. Everything they say about the real Bandit is true, it's the perfume that made me take interest in fragrance, an art I previously disregarded as the snobby cousin of bath oils.
But if you go looking for Bandit be advised; it has gone through so many reformulations at various times that there is no telling what your bottle may smell like. The newest incarnation (the reference number is 77011 on the bottle I'm holding) is a pale imitation of the original, thanks in part to IFRA mandated neutering and I would not recommend it. Look for an earlier version for a better chance of satisfaction.
It is indeed potent. To say that one spray would be an overkill is not an understatement. Opens with a extremely "Sharp & Dirty" accord of Jasmine and Rose absolute spilled over used leather and grease. It''s powdery to the core and it shouldnt surprise you if it reminded you of Knize Ten as it contains the "exact" same accord of florals, Tar & leather, especially towards mid to drydown. Where it smells different to Knize is, Knize Ten always came across as a "green, powdery floral with a powerful leather accord" whereas, Bandit comes across as a "oriental, powdery floral with a powerful leather accord" define Oriental? well, think of it as a Knize Ten caught making out with CK Obsession Pour Femme EDP. It has tht Golden, Warm texture to it. But make no mistake, this is "The" leather fragrance. piece of advise, buy only decants. a 10 ml decant will last a life time coz 1 spray of this gem is all you need for 2 days in a row.