Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Relax by Davidoff

Total Reviews: 29
God this is good! Why is there nothing like this around!? The mini's can be found but that's all.

In a nutshell, this is a smooth Barbasol smell, rounded out by a smooth (yes, smooth) herbal undertone. TonyT's review is pretty spot on, and he sums it up in a few words. Not much more to add to this, except that it's a must try for any lover of fragrances!
14th October, 2017
Genre: Woody Oriental

To quote Frankie Goes To Hollywood: "Relax! Don't do it!"

This scrubber is very sweet, floral, and fruity on top, and smells at first like a tropical vacation. Then again, maybe its just the fluid’s Caribbean green color. Or the name. The tropical drink accord is soon joined by a generous helping of powder, plus some very soapy lavender and plenty of syrupy immortelle.

By the time it settles into its heart, Relax has grown into a powdery gourmand, backed by a bitter soap accord and some very musty wood. I guess I could call it well blended, since it’s hard for me to pick out individual notes. My impression is that it’s supposed to be a nice fluffy pillow of a scent, but to me it’s just flat, dull, and cloyingly sweet. The olfactory texture is the equivalent of milk-of-magnesia, and like the medicine it has a metallic chemical edge that’s just plain unpleasant. I think I'll take Cool Water.

25th June, 2014
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom
The green-fresh bregamot-citrus-lavender-mint opening blast gains a twist with a good tarragon dose -traditional with a novel touch and beautiful. The drydown is a patchouli-jasmine-dominated floral phase that is pleasant, but on my skin it lacks the radiance of the top notes. This is all forgotten when this scent develops further towards the base, where anise, a smooth soft amber and tonka mix with a caramel-like undertone, and a soft suede adds a nice truly relaxing finish. This smooth base - we are now six hours into the life of Relax - eventually gains a typical barbershop character, smooth, creamy and as relaxing as a shave in a barbershop. This splendid turn stays on for another ten hours at least - that make an astounding total longevity of over fifteen hours, with good silage and projection. Overall this is one of Davidoff's finest.
08th May, 2014
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Tony T Show all reviews
United States
strange aromatic/fougere in the same vein as del pozo's quasar(they share the same weird color).a definate 80"s powerhouse but also delicate clean/barbershop scent. 2 many notes to name but everything is done elegantly. a true masterpiece. i have had my mini for 3 years as i only wear it on special occasions..
14th March, 2013
I have recently come to the conclusion that classic barbershop scents are my favorites, so have been sampling different ones that fall into that line.

Relax takes the masculine old school barbershop to a richer, maybe more refined level. The big mint opening is awesome. Spices and not overly sweet vanilla kick in quickly as well. The whole vibe really reminds me of a thick lathered shave cream (In the same way that RGPH smells similar to Barbasol)

As it dries the vanilla kicks in a bit more, but thankfully the spices, mint and herbs keep it from getting too sweet. I am not a big vanilla fan, but somehow it just works here. Pillowy clouds of shave cream and a bracing aftershave splash are what I keep imagining here.

This one seems to last and last too! I can't stand frags that just creep away after an hour. This one keeps the fresh shaved feel going and going!
18th January, 2013
Really wish I could find a bottle of this without paying through the roof. I really like this fragrance and just like it's name, it truly did help me relax.

Just having finished a stressful and long day, I came home to a package with the mini sample I had ordered to give this a go as the note list was interesting and seemed like something I would enjoy wearing when in the mood to just simply and cleverly enough, "relax".

As others have noted, it isn't the cleanest and it is a powdery blend but as soon as even opened up the mini bottle and and took a whiff (with a headache, mind you) it just left me with an easing and comforting feeling.

It may not be one of those ground breaking or legendary frags that we so love to find, but I feel it lives up to its name. Unfortunately, since it is discontinued, it doesn't exactly live up to its current price tag.

This one is a solid 3.5 out of 5 for me.
14th April, 2012
No shop here in The Netherlands sells this amazing fragrance anymore now. As a lover of 70's and 80's (powerhouse) fragrances I bought one 75 ml bottle blind after reading all reviews I could find about it.
My research was not in vain cause, as expected, I really love this discontinued fragrance. I do not know how old the bottle is but the scent is still amazing with huge sillage and longevity. Compared to its lovely brother Zino, I get at least 4 hours more longevity!
As it's only available in one (online)store here and for the rest only to be bought in Germany (Douglas), as far as I could see on the net, I bought myself one back-up bottle. The back-up bottle smells exactly the same as the other so, if stored properly it lasts for years imo.
What to say and to add about the scent and smell of relax?
First of all I do not see any similarities with Zino at all. Zino is more macho, darker, has that animalic vibe because of rose mixed with patchouli, has way less sillage and longevity compared to Relax, after the first hour, and has a vanilla dry down as well but different; more vanilla-sugary. Both are to me sexy smells and, imo, Relax is also to be worn at the office (light application) while Zino is more an evening scent.
To explain the smell of Relax: Imagine a more creamy-smooth Brut Faberge because of the anise and benzoin but with also a real masculine vibe because of the leather, with Relax even being stronger than Brut despite the smoothness. Relax is a smooth powerhouse imo.
The mix of notes in Relax are really magnificantlly done! For me the perfect original!, strong, though not overpowering nor offensive scent that can be worn almost anytime!
I agree on the remark that if Davidoff would've spent some really serious advertising work on this one, instead of all attention on mainly "Cool Water" they would have had a bestseller, imo. Maybe I am glad they didn't as I know almost noone here has this scent! A missed opportunity for Davidoff though! Longevity is 10+ hrs and sillage above average.
5 Thumbs up! Rated: 10/10

Edit: Got a third (vintage) 75ml bottle of Relax with script font instead of block and different bottle shape which smells about exactly the same (which is NOT the case with the Zino or Cool Water bottles) as the two other more modern bottles of Relax I own with Davidoff written in block font on bottle and package. All three are 75 ml's and the fragrance is still not to get anymore here online. I think I bought the last two genuine bottles 2 years ago! It has become my signature fragrance an I still have to smell a fragrance that is just a little close to this highly original gem. Still one of a kind! Rated: still 10/10
22nd July, 2011 (last edited: 04th September, 2012)
Yep, Brut by Faberge. It opens with a Joop! sweetness, then quickly transitions into Gaultier's Fleur du Male. Shortly after, it turns into Brut, very strong Brut. Babershop at its best and worst, I can't help but get images of a hairy man getting a shave from a barber, the red white and blue striped spiral pole spinning right outside the window, and the hearty chatter of politics and sports fill the air.
If that's your sort of thing, Relax is for you...otherwise, stay clear!
Thumbs up because it does smell good, you just hav eto be at least 50 to appreciate it. :)
29th August, 2009
It certainly shares a similarities to Zino, there is no doubt about that. It`s mainly that patchouli note (playing with some other notes) which is extremely similar in these two. It`s easy for me to bet my life on that they have same perfumer(s), too.
So if you have smelled Zino, and then wonder, " that oh-so-hard-to-get Relax might smell...", then I suggest you to imagine this : Cut off the bergamot burst opening from Zino, take that animalic charachter of Zino a bit down by grinding the patchouli a tad rounder and reducing the amount of indoles, and then add a healthy amount of sweet, warm and a bit smoky benzoin to it.

Relax is a good, long lasting fragrance. It is still lightyears away from the magic of Zino, though.
06th November, 2008
Davidoff Relax, you are an odd creature. I find you comforting yet I cannot take you outside. You are a loud, obnoxious fougere. When you are around you have to tell everyone around you who you are. You are relentless and obscene and you smell like you've been drinking. Relax, big guy and douse yourself with some mint to cool your nerves. Ahhh no not with a mohjito... ah well.
30th October, 2008
This was chosen for me as a gift by my then companion during my year abroad in 1990-91. He had Cool Water, which was, at the time, wonderful (first I'd encountered it), because it hadn't "arrived" in the States yet, and, not yet being ubiquitous, was tremendously sexy for a guy in his 20s. So he chose Relax for me.

Now, to Relax. Yuck. The drydown is too powdery for me. It has a complexity that doesn't feel well integrated, but overdone. The powderiness has a cloying quality that makes it almost unbearable in warm weather. The patchouli/amber feels too rich and aromatic and sweet.

The astringent ingredients don't seem to keep this one clean. The sweeter and spicier notes dominate in the blend, and could really use that offset to keep it clean. That lack of cleanliness makes me only yearn for the craft of the much-maligned Cool Water even more (but one can't wear the same as one's companion). alas, I had to wait until the year was up to ditch this one.
24th April, 2008
jdnba Show all reviews
United States
Wow, the last guy to review this hit the nail on the head...sophisticated Brut. I also agree with the second guy, there is a note that i can only imagine is the spearmint, that is really offputting, but this is one of those scents that you start smelling something warm and candylike and you go "wow what is that...hey its me".
30th May, 2007
This fragrance comes off as a sophisticated take on Brute by Fabrege'. Relax is a very nice and comforting fragrance for the mature gentlemen. There is a strange note that's noticeable and kinda off putting in the beginning, but after an hour or two this fragrance really begins to work it's relaxing magic! Must try if you're over 38 years of age.
11th May, 2007
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Velvety smooth both in texture and aroma—the opening of Relax is what the conglomerate accord should be: Greens, citrus, and herbs (with patchouli, leather, and tonka from below) combined in a discreet, rich, and suave opening. I think the mint / lavender makes the accord extra special in aroma, and the tarragon, lavender, and tonka (or vanilla) combination is one of the secrets having opening accord seem so velvety. It’s a wonderful rich and full beginning. The greens and herbs of the opening carry the fragrance to a muted, softened floral / conifer combination in the mid notes—again intricately supported by the tamed sweet accords from the base. The mid notes have more character and less beauty than the opening and have better longevity and a broader platform on which to operate and because of the light woods—patchouli and vetiver. To my nose the light woods predominate in the mid notes and, next, the florals take precedence over a very discreet cedar note. The middle also supplies a touch of leather and a touch of cloves. The patchouli and leather provide the transition to the base where they combine with the moss as a counterpoint to the sweets. The mossy, leathery, slightly sweet drydown is rich, luscious, and long lasting. Relax is excellent…No! …Superb!… and I can understand why it has such a distinguished and loyal fan club.
03rd February, 2007
I just got this about a week ago, and I can see what LushLife means by the cough syrup, with spices and vanilla mixed in, but that smell fades after about an hour and then ...WOW it's amazing. You don't need many sprays to give off good sillage with Relax. Everyone should get this for their own collection, you won't be dissapointed...
14th September, 2006
Something about it just smelled so much like cough medicine I couldnt get over it. I waited all evening to get this stuff off me but, in this case unfortunately, this one has some serious lasting power!
From the topnotes to the basenotes, I just couldnt bring myself to enjoy this one. It gave me a serious headache. Imagine spices in cough syrup, with creamy vanilla. No thanks.
24th August, 2006
oolong Show all reviews
United States
If I was told I had to pick one fragrance to use for the rest of my life, it would be an easy choice for me, Relax by Davidoff.
23rd August, 2006
zztopp Show all reviews
United States

To my nose, it smells like a fresher, more minty-benzoiny, less complex version of Zino...a Zino "Summer version". Its definitely not a "classic" as many others may lead you to believe...I wont be hunting down overpriced bottles of this on Ebay anytime soon, especially when considering that Zino is a better fragrance overall. Still, with good longevity and decent sillage, it would be interesting to try both Zino and Relax, and then make the decision as to which one is more suitable for you.
12th August, 2006
If you have Zino, you have a pretty good idea of what Relax is like. Imagine the basic thrust of Zino, only better. A little thicker, a little richer, maybe a little sweeter (but not too sweet). It's kind of loud and strong, so if you're a skin-scent person, this one's not for you. I get florals, a sweet tobacco note, and some woods on top of the benzoin/vanilla base that the other reviewers have mentioned. A five-star scent in my book.
25th July, 2006
Damn. I thought this was my little secret. I discovered this cologne completely by accident about ten years ago in a Beverly Hills shop called Duty Free Perfumes (I believe). I still remember my knees literally buckling when I first smelled it (so much so that the guy next to me decided to try it too). I use it very sparingly, and keep it in my dresser drawer away from light and heat, and so far it's held up quite well. I still chuckle every time I see a display of Cool Water, a Davidoff scent that in IMHO can't hold a candle to Relax. I really hope they do decide to bring it back. I never saw any advertising for it in the States, so I'm not surprised that it didn't sell well, and I'm sure if Davidoff threw their weight behind it as much as they have the Cool Water ad campaigns it would be a best-seller. (But then I wouldn't have my own private scent...hmmm.)
31st May, 2006
Simply stunning. An olfatory experience unlike no other. We're not in Kansas anymore, Toto!
07th March, 2006
I thought the opening rather reminiscent of Caron Pour Un Homme. But then you go off on a different journey altogether. Down sweet, rich, light paths of whipped cream and pillowy clouds of flowers and soft spices. It is never cloying, just fantasy-land-relaxing. A Wizard of Oz among fragrances? Or a Magical Mystery Tour?
06th February, 2006
This scent lives up to its name. Slightly aquatic, almost herbal spicy notes, marine freshness with a darker, woody-ambery touch towards the end. Even if I'm not a fan of Davidoff, I definitely appreciate and enjoy this one.
02nd February, 2006 (last edited: 30th December, 2010)
Without a doubt one of my favorite orientals. An entrancing melange of amber and benzoin notes with a boozey edge. Don't let those top notes fool you - this one is rich and deep and the emerald green bottle and apt name couldn't be more spot on! Like nothing else on the market, imagine Zino with a more oriental vanillic edge.
13th January, 2006
stuigi Show all reviews
United States
According to Davidoff the triangle should read as follows: Top: Bergamot, Woods and Flowers; Heart: Geranium, Jasmine, Rosemary and Clove; Base: Balsamic, Vetiver, Patchouli, Amber
26th January, 2005
According to Coty Europe, Relax (75 ml exclusively) will be relaunched (at least in Germany) in November 2004.
20th October, 2004
Woweee zoweeeee! This is an amazing fragrance. It's so incredibly smoooooooth! Why on earth did Davidoff ever stop selling this in the States. It's amazing stuff. I have no idea why, but for some reason when I smell this fragrance I think of marshmallows. Light, fluffy sweet marshmallows. Long lasting also. If you can get this hard to find jewel, immediately snag it. You will not be let down. 10/10
19th January, 2004
A firm favourite of mine for the last ten years. Rich, almost surreal yet decidedly masculine. Addictive and intoxicating. I always have to refrain from taking a sniff at my own wrist when I wear this.. A real gem that is getting harder to come by.
08th November, 2003
The good news is, Relax is the BEST scent I've found in the last twenty years. The bad's no longer sold in regular stores in the US. It IS available at Davidoff Stores, and in Europe. This is the smoothest, warmest, cleanest scent I've ever experienced. It's rich yet never overpowering and it even makes you FEEL good, just wearing it. This is a winner guys. If you can find a sample somewhere, try it. I discovered it on this site and it's a great discovery. Enjoy.
10th April, 2003