Reviews of Boss Number One by Hugo Boss

    Find out more about Boss Number One by Hugo Boss in the Basenotes Fragrance Directory


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    pluvio's avatar



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    The opening is a pleasant honey and moss mixture with a little bit of a urine note in the background. Unfortunately as the day progresses the honey dies down while the urine soaked moss rages on at full strength.

    It does have a certain 1980's aura to it. It makes me want to put on a pinstripe suit and fire someone. I imagine Donald Trump smells like this.

    06 February, 2014

    Andrewthecologneguy's avatar

    Nigeria Nigeria

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    One of my favorite scents for being a sensual dirty (urinous) masculine fragrance. The use of honey,bergamot, rosemary and jasmine are to be commended. I like this as much as like Tenere by Paco Rabanne. They are brothers for sure, especially since they were both created by the same perfumer. Love love the two!

    09 November, 2013

    Bigtruck260's avatar

    United States United States

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    I bought this because it was heavily discounted - and it was my signature when I wore it in high school in the early 90's. Back then it was in competition with Drakkar and Polo...but today it kind of stands out in the crowd. I get compliments from women my age - and buddies who remember it from 20 years ago. Its has a unique sweetness to it that others from this genre do not. Boss No. 1 is far from contemporary, but still a relevant fragrance that will make your chest sprout coarse, dark Magnum PI hair - and will cause a few heads to turn. Not everyone is amazed by the generic aquatic stuff out there...

    19 January, 2013

    Princeofegypt's avatar

    Egypt Egypt

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    beautiful fouger very sharp opening at first many people will say this smells dated but to me its beautiful masculine scent not so powerful as some of the 80s fragrances but decent
    i dont know but its smells like a masculine rose for me if u dig rose scents and classics u will be hooked on this stuff if u dont like classics for u it wont work
    sample b4 u buy but u should sample this one cuz if u like it it will be an addiction trust me :)
    best fragrance from boss by far

    25 October, 2012

    jimmyfresno's avatar

    United States United States

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    Dated. clumsy, heavyhanded and nauseating. I wore this in the 80s and dont' know how I managed it.

    Revisiting it in the context of some knowledge about fragrances, I appreciated the beeswax (they're calling it honey) note hidden in the murk of horrible "Fruit Loops" synthetic florals and fruit. The basenotes are so insinuated into this sickening mess that they are overpowered by the aromachemical catastrophe that Boss is.

    My real pity is for the female or other partner of the innocent man who applies this miasma to his chest and has to smell it while next to him.

    I am wondering if they are still employing Pierre Wargnye, the perpetrator of this scent.

    27 August, 2012

    0j76's avatar

    England England

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    Sweet, rich, deep honeyed golden glow. Smells to me like a richer version of the excellent Givenchy Insense. Where the Givenchy is stern and sparse, Boss is big and comforting. I am reviewing the original Boss. The latest one in the shops labelled Boss Number 1 is different. For me, the original Boss is an all-time great.

    06 July, 2012

    Possum-Pie's avatar

    United States United States

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    Strange, 20 years ago when I was young, I wore this a lot. It reacted well with my chemistry and had a balanced scent. I bought it again last year, and It must be that my chemistry has changed. It is heavy floral scented, almost nauseating. It lasts a long time, a plus. I find that after dry down, I can tolerate it if I only use one spritz.

    10th June, 2012

    SirScent's avatar

    United States United States

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    Boss # 1 is an excellent fougere.
    It's old school, yes, but it can stand the test of time.
    It is lighter (I think it's the honey) than some of the powerhouses that it shared the mid 1980's with.
    I think that is why it survived so well.
    Masculine and Classic is how I would describe it.
    Very Nice Indeed.

    23 March, 2012

    drseid's avatar

    United States United States

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    This powerhouse just was not to my taste, unfortunately. It smells way too harsh and unrefined. I love my powerhouses and I love my aromatics, but the herbs here are just way over-the-top in your face for me to wear Boss Number one without feeling more than a bit uncomfortable. 1 out of 5 stars.

    10th February, 2012 (Last Edited: 22 December, 2012)

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is a classic fougere structure with a dab of honey. Hugo Boss does quite a few "fresh, fruity, clean" scents for young men but it savvy enough to keep this classic on the market. The oakmoss and musk really hits you at first but the honey and lavender take over for a sweet and sharp accord until the oakmoss comes back. This is a "light" powerhouse-style fragrance.

    27 December, 2011

    dwrestle's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is one of the best fragrances I have, and certainly one of the most gentlemanly. It comes out of the bottle with a raging tobacco and honey note, but soon settles down and envelops you with warmth from the honey, and patchouli. If you smell it on your skin it can smell sweet and warm, but some might say it smells kind of like piss. However it's the smell that it seems to wrap you in that is important and wonderful.

    I don't understand how Hugo Boss can go from making an awesome fragrance like this to making the crap they make now.

    06 November, 2011

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    With reminiscences of Paco Rabane Pour Homme because of its laundry-barber shop feel (bergamot-lavender-oakmoss), this is a more than decent fougere with a final delicate and airy green aromatic but at once soapy feel. The floral notes soften the initial harshness of greens on the side of a touch of honey and moss, while a nice note of dry  patchouli roots a pillar in the structure of the boise' general silkiness. Just a tread behind of Elements in my Boss's struggling (i don't particularly love the fragrances of the brand) parade.

    22 September, 2011 (Last Edited: 10th November, 2011)

    innana88's avatar



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    I haven't smelled this since before the 'Number One' was added, but the memory of this fragrance is so incredibly vivid and my experience completely jars with most of the other positive reviews on here.

    I was sixteen. My seventeen year-old high school sweetheart wore Boss. I think he snagged it from his older brother who was somewhat of a bad boy. J, on the other hand, was sweet and goofy and, knowing him, put about as much thought into his choice of fragrance as he did the wrinkled band t-shirts he wore with sand-washed jeans that were two or three years out-of-date.

    It is indeed a very masculine and animal-like scent, as others have described, but the lavender, the sweetness of the honey, and the warm dry-down are what made the scent absolutely perfect for a man-child trying to figure out who he was as an individual while experiencing love for the first time. This is also what made the scent awesome enough to spray on the stuffed lion he'd bought me as a gift so that I could fall asleep with comforting and soft base notes of this really wonderful fragrance which lasted for several nights at a time. Very fond memories of this one and still one of my favorites.

    21st September, 2011

    dark phoenix 123's avatar

    Singapore Singapore

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    i recently bought 3 bottles of the old Hugo Boss (before it was renamed No.1 in front of the box). i like the slightly saltish scent which smells very sensual to me. i think it personifies a sexy virile man.... ;)

    03 June, 2011

    Oslo-Fjord's avatar

    Norway Norway

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    A classic! I used to sprinkle myself with this stuff in the late 80-ies, but afterwards all the new "fresh-sport-citrus-aqua" stuff took over the market. I tried this scent recently, and I just had to buy a bottle! I love spicy/woody/oriental bold fragrances with a hint of sweetness, and I will place Boss no:1 in that category. If you like classic masculines like Obsession, Tuscany, Aramis, Azzaro etc, you will probably love this one. Warm, dense, spicy, and sweet, with excellent sillage and longevity. I own several fragrances in this category that are more refined, but I think Boss no.1 is quite unique. I have never smell enything similar. Attire: suit jacket, white shirt, leather shoes, and maby a tie. Not for casual ans sport, but great for business and formal occasions. IMO, the only Boss scent with a certain style, elegance, and individuality. A must have in a fragrance-collectors closet. It has passed the test of time, and still smells great after all these years.

    11th April, 2011

    odysseusm's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    I don't get it. "Macho, masculine, powerhouse"? Doesn't seem quite like that to me.
    The notes suggest a classic fougere but this doesn't have that unique perky-green note I associate with that type of scent. The scent starts as aromatic and herbal. It quickly assumes its main character, a soapy-clean style. It is pleasant and simple. It gets sweet and a bit powdery in the dry-down but not excessively so. As well, I find an airy, salty tang from the patchouli and oakmoss. I just don't find this as heavy as many reviewers suggest. Odd, since I usually am very sensitive to scent. Pleasant, but I have other fougeres I like much better.

    22 December, 2010

    Safetyjon's avatar

    United States United States

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    I find Boss Number One to be very unique...Nothing I own smells quite like this. It is anamalic, masculine, dry and dirty with a hint of sweetness from the honey. I really do enjoy it when I'm in the mood to wear it. It starts out very potent, but calms down to a reasonable level within a half an hour. Sillage is very good, but not excessive. Longevity is 8-10 hours.

    I find it to be more masculine than Quorum Puig or Bijan PH, but not necessarily more powerful. Azzaro PH, Giorgio PH and Halston Z-14 are just as powerful, but sweeter.

    I have other fragrances with the patchouli, sandalwood and oakmoss combination in the basenotes, but this powerhouse is so much more anamalic...so much dirtier. Definitely a thumb's up.

    21st December, 2010 (Last Edited: 22 July, 2011)

    Grottola's avatar

    United States United States

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    A very good entry level powerhouse. If you can find the vintage version before it was even called "Boss Number One", I find that one superior.

    05 November, 2010 (Last Edited: 06 February, 2011)

    mspa's avatar

    United States United States

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    the more i wear it, the more i don't like it (unlike with some other stuff where i experience the contrary effect). at first it seemed to me rich and masculine. what bothers me is its very synthetic core, easily revealed if you try to wash it off... what remains is a very unpleasant, strong chemical smell... you may not walk in a rain wearing it, but imagine what would happen if you apply 'generously' in a hot day, and then sweat a lot...

    11th September, 2010

    Skweekah's avatar



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    Lovely fragrance. Warm, masculine, powerful. It is a deep and complex fragrance. It's one that Im sure will stand the test of time. Is a must have for any fragrance connoisseur's collection. Projection and longevity are excellent and has the characteristics of a high quality men's classic fragrance.

    Skweekah

    31st August, 2010

    Swanky's avatar

    United States United States

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    How have I overlooked this all these years? As Shamu1 noted, this must be experienced on skin to get the full effect. At first the animalic dirtiness is stupefying but this is part of the allure. Think Kouros, Moustache, Givenchy Gentleman: these all come on like gangbusters. I get the patchouli-herbal thing for the first hour or so, then the sweetness sneaks in; this must be the honey note but it's kind of fruity to my nose. The dirty quality never leaves though, which makes this unique.

    This is one scent that's a male chauvinist in its overt macho attitude. Projection is top notch but longevity, although ranging about 6-7 hours, is surprisingly, relatively short for such a General Patton firebreather. All-in-all a must try, especially for fans of old school masculines.

    29 August, 2010

    Zgb's avatar

    Croatia Croatia

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    Incredible, I can't believe this is a Boss scent. Masculine smell of honey with spicy/woody touch to it. This scent is very elegant. For the office or even romantic occasion. Longevity and sillage are very good. Definitely thumb up!

    08 August, 2010

    Asmo's avatar

    United States United States

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    Growing up in the southern USA I often smelled this on rural men in their 30's and 40's. I smiled when I read someone describe it as 'warm hog piss'. That is not a bad thing to smell like depending on where you live. I would probably not wear this, but I will revisit and respect it as one of the gems of the 80's.

    28 April, 2010

    great_badir's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Good grief! A stereotypical 80s powerhouse which ticks all the stereotypical 80s powerhouse boxes - strong, cloying, heavy handed, not in the least bit subtle, stale, musty, loud spice. Now, for my sins, I love most HB releases (even most of the current range of aquatics), but Number One to me represents everything that was (and is still) bad about 80s fragrances. Quite how the thing has made it into the 2010s I'll never understand, but then Old Spice is still going strong, so what do I know!

    19 March, 2010

    shamu1's avatar

    United States United States

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    Don't test this on a smelling strip. You won't get an accurate idea of what this smells like unless you test it on your own skin. On paper, it smells musty, muddy, brown and gloomy. On skin, it smells warm, rich and debonaire.

    I completely trashed Boss #1 in my prior review because I'd tested it on a smelling strip. I've done a 180 on this now that I've worn it. Boss #1 is a very dark, heavy and rich fragrance that exudes confidence and maturity with its excellent blending of tobacco, honey and patchouli. I'm shocked to see that leather is not listed as a note, because Boss No. 1 has a dark, oily feel that is the hallmark of leather in a fragrance. I could just see Boss #1 fitting right in at a formal black tie event, where there's a lot of cigars and Scotch.

    Boss No. 1 is an 80s power scent, even if it's not quite as aggressive and in your face as other powerhouse frags from that era. Its longevity isn't great for a powerhouse - 6 or 7 hours - but that's not a big deal. It has prominent sillage, and I put this in the same league of powerhouses like Azzaro Pour Homme and Giorgio For Men, where its smooth, deep base notes, rather than assertive top or mid notes, provide it the Powerhouse muscle.

    Boss No. 1 truly exudes a macho sense of authority and swagger, which I feel is the litmus test for a true Power Scent. It's powerful but not brash or crass - this is not a fragrance for some loud, obnoxious bum. I also don't find it to be an aristocratic smelling scent like Creed's original Tabarome either - this is a fragrance for the ultra-confident, self-made man. It exudes true masculinity like few other fragrances can.

    MY RATING: 9/10

    05 December, 2009 (Last Edited: 17 August, 2010)

    Bartlebooth's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    It was a huge relief to rediscover Number One, having tried and been mightily unimpressed with the Boss line of fragrances. I do recall this being more potent in its original guise, but the spirit and notes are almost identical. Though they have few notes in common, the opening reminded me of Versace L'homme, an earthy and herbal quality that is very masculine, and deeply satisfying. This potent opening is quite brief, but the honeyed heart notes of jasmine, combined with the rough edges of the rosemary, provide a warm if somewhat subdued middle phase. The drydown is even more restrained, with a very simple base, further adding to the general feeling of reticence. Initially I felt that it had poor longevity, but it is actually quite long-lived, just very unobtrusive and contained.

    26 October, 2009 (Last Edited: 04 December, 2009)

    jenson's avatar

    India India

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    smells pretty synthetic & dated. revolves around strong incense like floral notes of jasmine..sweetened by honey and supported by sandalwood and patchouli. it;s too chaotic and doesnt settle on my skin to acceptable level of refinement or harmony. not my type of scent, considering i love classics.
    if you like Miss dior, VC&A First kinda scents, then this is right up your alley.

    14 August, 2009 (Last Edited: 18 August, 2009)

    foetidus's avatar

    United States United States

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    The number one Boss fragrance not only in name: I was expecting something completely different. I wasn’t expecting anything of substance and sensuality. This is not one of those later characterless and artificial Hugo Boss fragrances. This fragrance exhibits genuine ‘80s characteristics – probably diluted through reformulations – but still retaining definite aspects of powerhouse potency and sensuality. Boss Number One opens alcoholy, and immediately moves into a rich juniper and artemisia –and it has a slightly dirty nature, but where the dirty comes from is not hinted at in the pyramid, unless its related to the patchouli of the base. I get very little citrus or herbal in the opening – just those lush, masculine notes. The middle notes get a little more arid in spite of the honey that’s listed for the middle. The drydown is quietly reserved with deep wood, tobacco, and patchouli notes.

    The unfortunate aspect of the fragrance is its lack of longevity. Usually scents like this last much longer than Boss Number One.

    07 August, 2009

    bpavilla's avatar

    United States United States

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    I purchased this cologne without testing it. This smell is completely unoffensive, but seems more tailored for an older generation. When I wear it at work older people will compliment me but I have never received a compliment from someone my age. The sandalwood and patchouli balance nicely, good scent just not for me.

    06 August, 2009

    tanto's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is a great scent. OK, it might be a bit dated but it is still very masculine and pleasant to smell. I guess that it would be considered an 80's "powerhouse" scent but it is definitely not as obtrusive as some of those 80's scents (which I really don't like anymore). This scent can be worn almost anytime but better for evening use. What I like about Boss One is that it cannot be mistaken for anything else because it has a characer of its own. The dry down smells terrific. I think it is better suited for men in their 40's or older.

    19 February, 2009

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