Guy Laroche - Drakkar Noir
This perfume, together with Caractere, got me started being excited about perfumery - this was the stuff my brothers wore when I was young. Smelling this after 20 years brings back a lot memories and makes me realize how good this perfume still is and was. Drakkar Noir made me recognize the smell of freshly crushed coniferous-leaves in it - which was a marvelous connection because I love that smell; we had them standing in our backyard. It was actually the first 'exotic' note that I could identify, other than rose- and citrus-notes. Drakkar noir always moves with a greenish flow, but always of the dirty-kind: slightly oily with a raw, gritty edge to it, and with smooth leather and tobacco 'of the spicy kind' to back it up, carried by a soft mossy cloud of oakmoss with a cederwoody-touch. Drakar Noir is an intense, focused and hot-tempered perfume with as much grip as smoothness; where lavender connects the bright and fresh peppery-citrus topnotes with the more 'weighted' base which also displays ozonic, metallic and mentholic notes. Drakkar Noir acts as a bodyguard in a tight, flashy suit - acting self-assured, cool and collected, but with a hidden alertness; ready to flex some muscles and kick some action when the moment calls for it. A masculine Masterpiece.
Just wonderful.Masculine, fresh, and just as good in the day as at night. I always buy a 200ml bottle as it goes so quickly.
I love this scent. I find that I only wear it in the fall/winter though. It seems this was made for my skin. If I put this on after work I get trace amounts the next morning . It leave such a great smell long after the dry down that is very faint and pleasant.
this is another classic one, always unique, signature, masculin as sexy, present as air, true as life, dark as night sky; i cannot recognize any notes in this one, it's just drakkar noir..Remebering it from late 80's i bought recently another bottle to re-feel the essence. Probably one of the most powerful and real men scents ever created, so well mixed ingredients that produce a stable spirit of drakkar noir. Same sence for me from the spray till many hours later, works individually and slightly different to any skin tries that, working really effective in mine, plus make women melt. One of a kind.
Classic to the point of becoming a reference
Finding Drakkar's smell alikes is fairly easy. Ceasar's and Lomani are the ones mentioned as being the best next to it, to the point a very enthusiastic reviewer and later blogger said thatthe first one was better than the original for it had what it lost in its reformulation; you can find close analogies to it in Gres' Cabaret, a now discontinued fragrance that is very enjoyable in its complexity, which I would say is better than Drakkar's; or maybe in locally manufactured versions sold by haberdashers that are, indeed, inspired by it. I imagine that this proves it is a classic, but I can't find in this argument the reason why I find Drakkar younger than it is.
Drakkar Noir smells classic, but not dated. It has a twist that provides for a contemporary feeling, a note that I associate with acquatics. Maybe many of these, a more recent group of blends, resort to dyhydromircenol, or its properties ("Powerful, thin, sweet, fresh, lavender-like, fruity, metallic, citrusy (linalyl acetate-like), clary sage-like, ambery odour." in http://perfumechemicals.wordpress.com/2012/10/31/dihydromyrcenol/ October 25, 2013).
Let my imagination or faulty olfative capabilities aside, the dry down is the best part of the olfative journey, characterized by a subdued character and limited longevity. It leaves you craving for more, at least in the version I have, which seems it has been improved lately.
The opening is spicy and citric, turning into a stingy balmy blend in a short period of time. According to the pyramid, what follows are more spices and some floral notes, carnation and jasmine: I can't get these for the stingy combo is still prevalent. Now, the base notes smells manly and powdery. The blend revolves around this stingy / powdery leitmotiv, which does not mean it is linear.
Strong? Olfative analysis brings a slight headache. Better enjoy it with a full wear. It seems it claims to be worn punishing reviewers when disecting it.
Long lasting? Not at all. Maybe overapplying might give wearers what they are looking for.
Pros: My formulation; understated and elegant
Cons: Common, almost what an aromatic fougere a la 1980's should smell like"
The Best Masculine POWERHOUSE...WHEN UNDERUSED
well this is the classic 90's bar/club/nightlife manly powerhouse
top is a slick sharp citrus with a dark leather monster hiding underneath
this is an absolute winner IF USED IN SMALL AMOUNTS
if a splash, splash ONCE
IF A SPRAY, 3-4 UPPER MAX
common yes, dated yes, still a winner for all ages. JUST DONT OVERDO IT!!!!!
Pros: ULTRA longevity, hell of a manly fragrance
Cons: HORRIBLE IF OVERUSED"
Still Sexy After All These Years
I didn't own this back in the 80's, but I know a lot of guys who did and I always thought they smelled great. Thankfully, none of them bathed in it, because overdoing it on this one is really gross. Worn in moderation, the oakmoss and lavender exude a smooth sexiness that seems to get the attention of the men and the ladies. I don't wear it often, but I thoroughly enjoy it when I do.
Pros: Smooth and sexy
Cons: Really horrible if oversprayed
There are few juices who are quasi-immortal, a kind of "living classics" - and DN is one of them.
DN is a frag of his time - it smells, it sounds, it moves like the 80s. For the perfume lover, DN will remain a constant benchmark - but not necesarily an everyday odor. From time to time, you will remember it; you know it is here, close to you, as it allways was in your contemporary personal history.
In this bottle, both coriander & juniper makes the difference, and the moment of his glory arrives in the drydown, after one hour and a half. The rest is, as I said, history.
Overall, a deserved 8,3/10.
very light top notes. besides the lavender just about non existent.the the coriander kicks inand mixes well albeit strangely with the oakmoss and patchouli. for the 35 and over crowd. very pungent and animalistic but in a good way. i am not an oakmoss fan but the patchouli mellows it out some. don't judge it in the first hour. let it sette and ggive it a chance like i did. 10 years ago my uncle wore it and i hated it but am now a fan..
Classic frag, longevity is pretty bad, few hours tops. Almost Polo Green like in that the first 10-15 minutes can be a bit overwhelming for people around you. Smoothes out to a nice smell though overall and does get some compliments still. Overall can get lost though in the shuffle of more modern smelling things, to be expected when sold in mass drug stores.
Say what you like...it's an 80s cliche, it's a club crawler classic. Whatever. Still smells great to me. I have the remnants of a bottle I bought way back when and a new bottle, bought in 2012. Same great scent.
My signature scent when I was in my teenage and girls used to love it.
Rediscovered after 20+years and it still rocks! Women still love it.
Very masculine, no boring oriental sweeter notes here, no acquatic aromas, just a solid and safe all day scent.
This is the scent a man should smell in my opinion.
Longevity is maybe the only low point. On my skin it seems to vanish quickly.
This fragrance is a very nice mossy/woodsy cologne that has been around forever. I have never yet met a single female (of any age) that did not really like this scent. It's still as pleasant now on sale at Walgreens as it was when it was introduced at the perfume counter at Nordstrom.
Re-discovered this one and it's now my main weapon of choice. The opening makes me wanna be sick but when it dries down, a legend is born!
I am female and this scent puts me into "sex overdrive"! just does something to my senses!
An excellent, dark evening/casual cologne that I used a ton of back in high school and college. Unfortunately, much like my affair with Obsession, this means it has run its course in my life and not something I want to revisit today.
a classic.it's great in conjuring images of a time long gone. Great scent anyway
Cologne seems to last forever for me. That said, Drakkar Noir is one of the few bottles that I consumed in its entirety. Loved this in the '80 and '90's. I ought to go replace it someday but I keep finding other things that interest me more.
Talk about a scent that takes you to a moment in time. I bet anyone over the age of 30 has a memory with this scent. For me, it was my father's signature scent.
I agree wholeheartedly with EricRico who noted missing elements to the pyramid. I'm not one to point to the scents generally, but leather is such a distinct note in this cologne. You get the floral notes right up front. Lavender for days. But the dry down leads to leather, wood, and other "green" scents with the floral notes all but disappearing.
Imagine yourself at a forest's edge, smelling flowers and then walking into the woods and breathing deeply in the piney, resiny scents while wearing your favorite leather jacket.
It's not linear, it's fairly well blended. Amazing sillage and strong longevity. It is highly potent, so it's a bit loud for people and, of course, it was the POSTER CHILD scent of the 1980s. It's a date night scent that many, many men of all walks of life used as their daily/work scent. It's far too dark and loud for work and this ruined the scent for many people.
Hard to not give it a thumbs up, though. It is well constructed and does its job. Clearly, the thing was everywhere for 10+ years.
I want to express my concern and discontent in the note pyramid above. Drakkar Noir is a true aromatic fougere - in both current and vintage formulation.
The note pyramid provided is missing very key ingredients (and adding some) that without them, Drakkar Noir would not be the classic fragrance that it is. Huge notes missing include Fir, Artemisia, Basil, Leather, Coriander, Cedar, Sandalwood, Vetiver, Carnation, Jasmine, Rosemary & Cinnamon. Lemon is somewhat apparent - a nice touch along with a little bergamot to add a sparkle of citrus on top, but this is a green and aromatic fragrance with a lot of wood, florals, and GREEN notes.
I cannot even discern what would be in a bottle of fragrance from the note pyramid listed - no offense intended to this truly wonderful forum at all - but Drakkar Noir has a very rich, potent and distinct history in male fragrance. Basenotes is a marquis site in the world of fragrance and I am a highly-devoted lover of scent. I just wanted to point out that a huge amount of notes are missing for Drakkar Noir. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the fragrance from Guy Laroche. Even in its reformulation, the notes are there and some even prefer it as it is now a less moss-heavy, leather-oriented throwback scent...it is actually a reformulation that I believe holds up well (definitely more lifted and "cleaner"), but is clearly different than the classic original.
My next review will cover my personal feelings of this classic, but I wanted to point out just how "off" the pyramid was so people who don't know the scent are not left in the dark. It's amazing how even current formulation is holding its value and is so highly sought-after.
21st February, 2012 (last edited: 07th May, 2013)
Drakkar Noir is one of the best male scents around even though it's an oldie. I love the juniper and lavender combo--so clean and fresh yet dirty in a weird way. The fragrance has no doubt changed since the 80's and 90's, despite an earlier post from me claiming otherwise. I know the original formula has changed because I recently purchased a vintage bottle from a local pharmacy; I figured the pharmacy had low turnover of Drakkar because they sell much higher end fragrances. I was right: the Drakkar box had a 1989 copyright and the print on the back of the bottle says it was manufactured by a different company than what's on the current bottle today. I have to say, though, that today's version of Drakkar isn't that bad and in some ways I like it better. The vintage bottle--despite what everyone claims--doesn't have better longevity and sillage than the current formula. Don't get me wrong, the older formula is different, seems mossier and more leathery and a touch richer, but it doesn't last as long as the current Drakkar. If you're looking for the vintage Drakkar, try Akthar Noir--it's pretty darn close to the vintage bottle I have. Overall, Drakkar Noir is a great fragrance, vintage or current formula.
Just scored a bottle of the great, original Drakkar Noir. This was my first go to, gonna get noticed cologne way back when it was first introduced. I got away from it over the years but a few years ago, when I re-started my cologne collecting ways, I picked up a small bottle. I opened it, and upon sampling at first could not believe that I had so loved this scent. After another test, I realized that what I had purchased was the new, reformulated version that is, to me much thinner and far sweeter than the fragrance from twenty some years ago. The bottle I received today, however, was the full-on dark mossy, spicy beast I remembered. I tested them side by side today and I do have to say, no matter what anyone claims, this fragrance is not what it once was.
07th October, 2011 (last edited: 08th October, 2011)
Im in 8th grade and this is my second real cologne, it smells great! Everywhere I went I had girls asking me to sit near them and walk by because I smelled so good... it projects alright, and it lasts for around 8-10 hours on me.
I always scoffed at Drakkar Noir because, honestly... forgive me but I had a vendetta against colognes that are for sale at Wal-Mart. I had this superiority complex because I wore Creed. Let me tell you what though, Drakkar Noir (when sprayed on my neck) is absolutely one of the best smells I have experienced. It is warm and dark, it is comforting and soothing, it is amazing. Love it. It is now one of my top three favorites. I decided to not buy Duc de Vervins (one of my "to try" colognes) for Drakkar, and I don't regret that decision at all. Thanks Wal-Mart
This stuff used to be really potent back in the day, nothing close to the juice of today.
I'm pretty sure most of my ex-girlfriends smell of Drakkar this to this day, as does the back seat of my Toyota from that era.
Fragrance is still refreshing and masculine as it was back then.
Opinions may vary, mostly being that scent is tied so close to memory.
If this is what the jerk in a university jacket smelt like when he dunked your head in a toiled, or the whiff you got from your girlfriend some evenings and neither one of you wore Drakkar, you are probably going to hate it.
My memories were all good, as is this scent. Enjoy Gentlemen!
aromatic fougere. strong, spicy, longlasting, powerful, loud-typical 80ies scent but absolutely a man´s scent.for a mature, handsome, virile man- a macho edt!.it smells a bit dated and reminds you of a barber´s shop- quite soapy.seems to be quite a simple structure behind this scent-nothing complex but somehow unique.If you like this kind of scent then azzarro or paco rabanne pour homme are a better choice.still a scent with a high recognition value and very singular!
Drakkar Noir deserves it's own 80's John Hughes film. One spray and it takes you back to Sixteen Candles & Cyndi Lauper on the radio. The first word out of my girlfriend's mouth when smelling DN for the first time? Sexy. One spray will do it, a max of 2. Just dont go overboard, even with the recent toned-down version. I love spritzing this stuff on a breezy Summer night, the wind catches it just right and it's heaven.
07th May, 2011 (last edited: 15th January, 2013)
A classic men's scent. Does not smell dated or "too old" to me though.
On the intial spray I get a bit of lemon and, although I can't always pick out individual notes, it gives me a fresh shaved/barbershop image when I smell it at first.
Gets a little greener with time I think, but overall rather linear.
Can be had cheap, which is a plus, but not a cheap smelling frag.
As others have stated, longevity and projection are strong point for this one so pply carefully. I do one spray to the chest and then one into my hand to dab around the neck/behind the ears and that works well and has even yielding compliments.
I've worn it both casually and formally and feel it works for either. Probably wouldn't opt for this on a date though.
This isn't one that will make all the ladies in the room give you their numbers, but it does smell nice if used properly.
I have to give Drakkar a thumbs up for its longevity and it's ability to transcend generations.
It's not a favorite in my wardrobe, but it does still intrigue me from time to time for it's fresh, spicey and masculine vibe.
Lemon is listed in the top notes but after years of wearing this, I still haven't found the lemon.
On an interesting note, I have a new bottle and an older bottle. The older bottle smells
much richer and finer without the annoying soapiness I find in the new bottle.
Lomani has been compared to Drakkar and yes it is similar but not as woodsy and spicey.
Actually I prefer Lomani for warmer weather and Drakkar for the cooler months.
Drakkar is still as popular as it was upon it's introduction so many years ago.
That says quite a bit about this powerhouse from Guy Laroche.
Drakkar Noir is a fascinating blend of woodsy, green and dark leather insinuations with fruity top notes that overwhelm in the initial blast but quickly drydown to a warm and charming leafy, floral fougere that pays no mind to subtlety. This is a powerhouse fragrance with incredibly strong projection velocity that lives well into old age on the wearer and dies a wonderfully aromatic death. Beware frag elitists, this is a very linear fragrance with a no-nonsense approach that states rather boldly in its initial blast what its intentions are and never detours from it.
Thing is, what Drakkar Noir is is nothing to point your noses up at. Noir is blended with the utmost professionalism, finding a way to layer a linear fragrance and keep the patchouli in the distant background while maintaing the perfect amount of juniper.
Simply a masterpiece in men´s fragrances, Draakar Noir created a wave of reaction within the industry for years afterwards, leading to a wider range of attention to men´s fragrances. May be overworn and overcopied over the years, but don´t let that take away its essence as a wonderfully strong and daring cologne that can pass itself off as both formal and casual, winter or summer, day or night. As influential and as great as they come.