Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Déclaration by Cartier

This one is, for me, one of the bext example of a total U-turn I had about a fragrance.

I bought Déclaration because I found it cheap and I was very curious about it because of all the reviews I read.
What a disappointment when I came home and finally smelled the fragrance, I was like "uh ? What people find so nice in it ? It smells like a bathroom deodorizer !".

But I kept trying from time to time and I slowly began to catch some different notes and appreciate it.
Now I'm to the point I think it's a genius masterpiece and I'll always have it in my wardrobe.

The composition is absolutely flawless, there was some serious work put in it and the result is a fragrance that evolves in a different way almost each time you wear it.
The notes I appreciate the most in it are bitter orange and cardamom, who are clearly noticeable but not overwhelming, just perfectly balanced with the rest.
But the genius touch here is the delicate hint of flowers which gives the fragrance a "romantic" style without being too effeminate to my taste.

This smell makes me think of a spring day's late afternoon, wandering in nature and just appreciating the beauty of what surrounds you.

If you're a romantic soul, you just can't pass on this one, it's simply marvelous !

Double thumbs up !
20th September, 2015
Well, well, well what do we have here? Terre d'Hermes before Terre d'Hermes and a damn good one, just as much as Terre. Declaration is maybe even more thick than Terre d'Hermes, dare I say. Exquisite for sunny days, be they warm or cold. For the office, formal meetings and occasions, I'd think twice about wearing it for a date, well at least first 3 dates.

Overall - excellent!

Originality 8/10
Scent 8/10
Longevity 9/10
Projection 8/10
10th June, 2015
Just received this peerless masterpiece after quite a wait and I must say, Jean Claude Ellena's craftsmanship is unmatched, the uniqueness and composition of this fragrance is bewildering and phenomenally extraordinary.

17th April, 2015
Advertisement — Reviews continue below

This is for someone who works in an office and wants to smell classy, and like a fan of Indian food.

17th December, 2014

What a SEDUCTIVE BEAUTIFUL fragrance.i adore this one.CLASSIC and MYSTERIOUS.i think it is an UNISEX fragrance because that really compliments can always in the center of attention with it.

The top/middle notes are amazing.They are what make this cologne so seductive but the base is woody and masculine.Good sillage and long lasting.

GREAT for the special night.More appropriate for autumn/night wear for a confident man lurking fancy night clubs.of course you can always enjoy with CARTIER colognes because they always HIGH QUALITY and CLASSY.

12th December, 2014
It has a base that is similar in Terre D'Hermes but instead there is a cardamom floral note that goes over the funky base. It's nice and classic but I'll stick with TdH.
06th December, 2014
In a few words... A fresh TdH, the scent is the same, with a better opening and better structure.
I don't know why TdH is usually preferred to this one.
25th August, 2014
Genre: Leather

As with so many scents by Jean-Claude Ellena, Déclaration has an ostensibly simple structure: it's fundamentally a dry cedar scent of the crispy, crunchy persuasion, enlivened by extremely bright citrus notes and given depth by a deftly measured dose of cumin and leathery base notes. Examined carefully, the composition reads as a modernist gloss on the cumin, citrus, and leather structure of Edmond Roudnitska’s great Eau d’Hermès, made to feel edgy and contemporary through extreme transparency and the removal of anything remotely sweet. It shares with the classic Hermès a paradoxical sense of dirty/clean, animalic/citrus that seduces some noses and repels others.

Déclaration rises above the general run of woods-and-citrus designer imitators that followed it by way of its fearlessly stark angularity, its seamless blending, and its superior ingredients. The bergamot top note is nicely done, and the transition to the dry, woody heart is very smooth. The citrus notes smell natural despite their brightness, and the woods are deeper and more rounded than most.

Like many other Ellena scents I've tried, Déclaration is also relatively linear, running in its cedar-cumin-citrus groove for a couple of hours before anything else happens. Eventually the citrus notes fade and a smoky leather and crisp, but not-too-loud woody amber join the lingering cedar for the drydown, which is also seasoned by a just-perceptible hint of moss.

With its clarity, its balance, and its clever allusions to classical structures, Déclaration marks a climax in Jean-Claude Ellena’s “minimalist” fragrance explorations. His related woody citrus “Jardin” scents for Hermès do nothing to improve upon Déclaration. In fact they seem to me clumsily out of balance and repetitious in its wake. Some of Ellena’s more recent minimalist compositions may be stripped down the point of being bare, but Déclaration strikes the perfect mean between clarity and substance. A landmark in the art of perfumery.
12th June, 2014
A really good and distinctive contemporary "eau de cologne" with a much interesting and complex structure. Dozens of notes here, but basically it is a fresh-musky-woody fragrance with several facets to discover according to what you focus on - you may want to feel the rich, sensual floral touch, the woods, the ginger, the citrus, the dried fruits-spicy accord (which, in turn, unfolds up like a fractal in cardamom notes, caraway, pepper, tea, neroli...). Or still - and probably, better - you may just want to feel the overall look of this - a safe, elegant, long-lasting milestone of modern eaux de cologne. An admirable essay of perfumery.

P.S. my personal feelings? Like for other Ellena's... so perfect it's boring.

18th April, 2014 (last edited: 19th April, 2014)
Declaration is about as animalic of a fragrance as I will ever wear. Even if you hate animalic scents like me, you may love this one. Hang in there for the first hour, you get a spicy cardamom, pepper and citrus domination. It settles into an exquisite floral, woodsy, tea & vetiver dry down. One of the best dry downs I have ever smelled. I highly recommend trying this one.
13th March, 2014
Most things of interest have already been said about Declaration, so this review is all opinion instead of technical detail. I like the scent itself just fine, but too many people seem to find it smells 'dirty' or 'weird,' and seldom in a good way (that I have personally experienced). I like the dirty, woody, sweaty cumin-herbals like this, S.T. Dupont Pour Homme, and Red by Giorgio, but they can be off-putting for the modern American olfactory audience. To Hell with them, really, but I like to remain empathetic. The real downer for me is the performance of Declaration; The top shines with warmth but gives way to the heart far sooner than I would like and soon becomes a bit hollow or flat. Aside from that it's a solid comfort frag.
13th January, 2014
Another masterpiece from master perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena. This scent predates his other successes like Terre d' Hermes, but Declaration makes the statement that Jean-Claude Ellena really was one superb perfumer since he began.
A fruity opening with an explosion of cardamom and other spices is what I will describe this scent. It's a bit like walking through the kitchen of a master-chef. One to excite the senses and turn heads everywhere, this scent truly is one of a kind. I can't fault it!
09th January, 2014
First time trying this, I've a carded sample spray - I'll type as I go...

Cartier has the following printed on the inside packaging (I quote):

"The powerful and generous vibration of a cologne spirit (orange, bergamot).
Invigorating pleasure of a crackling juicy ginger note.
Masculine and incisive energy of light woods (cedarwood, vetiver)."

Initially - this smells disappointingly like a feminine fragrance, it's the bergamot oil... very floral. I can smell the vetiver in there, it's tamed down though.

The 'bitter' orange is very nice, but it smells too sweet - and it's mixing with the bergamot oil to make an orange-floral girly stink on my skin.

The cedarwood, however, is excellent - very sharp and clean. The ginger is subtle, I can smell it though.

It settles down into a sweet-sharp bergamot-ginger-cedar. It does smell like a magazine sample however... very generic. I can detect a soapy note as well.

This needed the bergamot stripped out and the bitter orange note made really raw and zesty, a lot more orange too - all very dry - and a bit more cedarwood wouldn't hurt.
The vetiver is fine, I'm not really a fan.

Not bad... just neutral. It could have been a lot better, easily.

It's that bergamot - it just smells too feminine, I'm sure it's used in every perfume under the sun.
05th January, 2014 (last edited: 10th January, 2014)
Advertisement — Reviews continue below

Stunning, addictive, captivating

This is the perfect autumnal fragrance. It's exotic but comforting, spicy but restrained, sophisticated and warm. This is Terre d'Hermes on vacation, in cold weather, smoking a pipe.

Some reviewers compare this to body odor; though I find that preposterous, I wouldn't mind living in a world where armpits smell like Déclaration. I suspect these critics also have delicate tummies and fear foreign food.

Pros: Like nothing else

03rd October, 2013
Smokey Joe

A scent with a big bang!
This one is very deep Its like the smell of sufficating smoke when applied, like walking in a smoke cloud of a burning fragrance factory.
True platform for the more known Terre d'hermes

If you put your nose on skin its will be too much.

But the sillage of this scent is out of this world.

Cartier Declaration can slam your head in the morning giving you a headache going to work if you feel weak because your beginning to feel ill.

It definitely will be stronger then you.

The drydown is remarkable good and more polite. (apart from the first hour(s))

Love it!

Pros: Powerfull and elegant

12th September, 2013
Gary F Show all reviews
United States
Cardamom Bomb

There are some people who appreciate the bitterness of fragrances, but I'm not one of them. This seems to be very well done, but just not my cup of tea (or cardamom). It's not the strength that bothers me, just the overwhelming spiciness and bitterness.

Pros: Interesting Mix of Spices
Cons: Bitter

20th June, 2013
Declaration by Cartier

Whatever lens you choose to view Declaration from, you cannot escape the fact that a lot of people will find the spicy notes of this mediocre fragrance similar to armpit odor.

29th May, 2013
I love this. Opens with a blast of bracing bitter orange then yields to a warm and delicious cardamom and a fresh woody base. I really don't get BO at all with Déclaration - it does very much speak of human passion, though. A great fragrance to wear when in love.
15th January, 2013
Declaration is a great fragrance, spicy and refreshing, the cardamom plays the main role here.. Smells elegant, it's suitable for every occasion. It's my office scent: subtle and elegant, not offensive also. Be careful: sometimes smells like body odour, which aint a problem. Sillage, lasting power and projection are medium-high. Definetely thumbs up!
02nd January, 2013 (last edited: 02nd March, 2013)
I think this is one of the most beautiful fragrances ever. I love this scent and its peculiarity that is unique among millions. If every man was using this perfume, the woman he loves will surely fall in love with him...
11th December, 2012
Beautiful opening of cedar and spice... Transforms into citrus overlord, I get distinct Lime although that does show as one of the notes.
08th December, 2012
Burst of lemon settling quickly into earthy spice; cumin I think. The end result is dirty lemons. This is a lot like the slightly "hot skank" note you can find in YSL pour homme. It's kind of that unwashed Morrocan bazaar vibe, a vibe you either really love or really hate. I LOVE that vibe when I'm in the mood but I think there are lots of fragrances that do it better and with more subtlety. And certainly for a lot less Euros. It even gave me a bit of headache, which, come to think of it, is kind of a deal breaker.
29th November, 2012
Recommended to me as nothing short of a pheromone on a flight back to London in 1999 by the steward, Cartier Declaration has become the fragrance I use most often. I was assured that women adore this scent, but I genuinely liked what I smelt on the test card anyway and bought a 100ml bottle. At Mile End tube station a few days later the ticket lady serving me behind the glass got a whiff, she absolutely loved it and asked me to write the name down so she could try it herself. Damn, I thought, I see why BA really is the world's favourite airline.

The 1990s saw the launch of many men's scents in the category that has become known as 'woodsy orientals', and I believe Cartier nailed it when they launched this modern masterpiece.

Declaration starts off fresh, with sparkling citrus top notes of bergamot and bitter orange, with the latter also found in Moschino Friends, another favourite of mine. Every part of the composition is tinged with dryness however, which reinforces the refined masculinity that pervades this scent. The cardamom in the mid notes makes Declaration quite unique and adds a wonderful spice that stands out in a sea of woods. After some time, when all freshness has gone and the heart has faded, Declaration evolves again into a a classical earthy drydown, with vetiver prominent in this phase. Silage is excellent on my skin, and longevity substantial - several sprays will last on my skin in warm weather for over 12 hours.

A classic and in my opinion the best men's fragrance Cartier have ever produced.
20th November, 2012
To me this smells almost exactly like Td'H, with a little more woodsy notes. I really like it, but I already own Td'H so I don't need another just like it. But I will pick this up when I run out.
13th November, 2012
To my nose this burst of lemon, followed by a musty support of same, reminds me very much of a combination of Borsari's fresh lemon verbena centered masterpiece, ACQUA CLASSICA and Rochas' bitter, sexy citrus in their master work, MOUSTACHE.

I own both these classics and see no need to add the Cartier DECLARATION to compete with them, but this is on its own and for its own sake, a very elegant, decent take on the citrus note.

Worth at least sampling.

New edit: Based on a new sample, the support of cumin changes the whole chemistry and makes it incredibly sexy, whereas before it was simply sexy. The balance between the cumin and the citrus (both fresh and souring) takes this scent to new levels of sophistication and sensuality. Still very much a thumbs up, even more so than my first experience.
31st October, 2012 (last edited: 17th February, 2014)
A fresh spicy fragrance with bitter oranges and pepper with a good dose of cumin is what I'm picking up off the top. This is a complex fragrance and there is a lot of notes in the mix.

I have to say this is a very good fragrance that keeps on giving as I'm now picking up a fresh neroli scent. It takes you on a journey from its spicy citrus opening to a fresh neroli heart and lots more. Good stuff I'm impressed!

26th October, 2012
Help, mother, my head is being squished between turbo-oranges. And the vetiver-cedar note is giving me a septum piercing. Ellena tends to focus on the driest, sharpest aspects of vetiver, for some reason, disregarding the wonderful warm earthy-sweet spectrum that’s available from this magical ingredient. A perfume that would seek to make of forwardness a virtue. No doubt all that Iso-E Super in the base contributes to the sense of sheer thrust this thing has.
For what it is, it’s impeccably constructed despite its brashness (well, I suppose the name is a warning), but it scares the daylights out of me.
14th September, 2012
Starts off as peppery sweet lemon which, in a couple of minutes, reveals more pepper, bitter orange and voila... Jean Claude Ellenas' alchemy transforms into BO !! It then dries up in the base but the smell of cumin remains. I love cumin and have used different types in my cooking; unfortunately this one's 'sweaty'.. not natural at all.

An unsuccessful blend and a bad attempt at perfumery in my opinion.
12th September, 2012
Declaration is proof that fragrance homes can produce quality perfumes. Voyage d'Hermes smells identical to this. However there are a couple of problems I have with the EDT version of Voyage.. Longevity is #1 & then it does not project much. Declaration on the other hand has very good projection & longevity.

It can be worn spring, summer, & fall in my opinion. That is where this fragrance really shines. Ginger, spices & citruses make a nice masculine quality scent. I would without a shadow of a doubt take this over Voyage d'Hermes.. Not saying that it is a bad scent, but compared to this it is not worthy. Cartier makes some of the best colognes in the world. If you have not tried this than stop messing around & get to it! ENJOY!
11th August, 2012
this is really intented for the ESSENCE formulation, smoky and gothic reminds me a modern age Jules by Dior
05th July, 2012