Reviews of Zino Davidoff by Davidoff

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    Colin Maillard's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Testing Zino Davidoff (which now I happily own among my scents) has been one of those moments that reminded me why I like perfumes and testing new things all the time, without prejudices. I did not know this fragrance to be honest, until I received a miniature. I quite enjoy Davidoff tobacco, but I did not really think Zino Davidoff (the scent) was worth any rush to test it... well however last night I applied some on my hand just for curiosity, and – wow! – the very first thing that came to my mind was: this smells *great*. It surprised me – like it happens to me really once in a while. To make things clear before talking about notes and comparisons, the most immediate, solid and sound quality of Zino Davidoff is that it smells terribly, irresistibly, undeniably good. Then, it's also a totally peculiar scent, it just imprints itself in your memory from the very fist sniff. The people which compare this to Dior Homme are right in my opinion: in fact, it somehow smells like an "uncle" of Dior Homme, a desaturated, more mature and somehow darker version of Dior's contemporary classic. Which in 1988 is quite avantgarde. Basically, Zino Davidoff is a rose-patchouli woody scent with an overall dusty sweetness, creamy notes of sandalwood and ylang, and "something" all around which smells halfway tobacco and soft modern leather (but it's neither of the two). Superb drydown, cozy and refined, worth the waiting and as much beautiful as the opening. Not a powerhouse despite the age, fairly different from more canonic fougères: actually it's quite more similar to early '90s brighter/sweeter masculine scents, but even more modern than those, and also "manlier" somehow. Warm, versatile, cozy and relaxed, masculine for sure but with a subtle feminine vein (like Ténéré by Rabanne, to which in fact, Zino Davidoff slightly resembles to some extents). Not intrusive or challenging, but as I said, it's quite unique, so better test it and familiarise with it before eventually purchasing it – not a predictable and safe crowdpleaser for sure. An underrated beauty!

    9/10

    30th July, 2014

    Way Off Scenter's avatar

    United States United States

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    Genre: Woody Oriental

    Zino Davidoff starts out with a very bold lavender and citrus accord that recalls old-school standards like Bois du Portugal, The Third Man, and even Jicky (without the civet). Some sweet spices and woods join in over the next few minutes, followed quickly by a very rich and rounded rose note. Settling into its heart, Zino Davidoff becomes a sweetened rose and wood scent, seasoned with geranium and resting on an oriental base of vanilla and smooth sandalwood.

    Zino Davidoff does not turn soapy as it dries down, as does Bois du Portugal, nor does it veer toward hyper-masculine leather in the manner of, say, Antaeus. It seems to me instead quite balanced - even classical - in its poised approach to the woody oriental genre. Granted, Zino Davidoff is potent, especially in its first few minutes, but it evolves into a versatile and wearable scent that's far less overwhelming than its oriental successors Opium, A*Men, Le Mâle, and Pi. These days Zino Davidoff is underused, under-rated, and deserving of a wider public.

    09 July, 2014

    RUDOLFO512's avatar

    United States United States

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    I bought this cologne way back in the 1980's and I loved it then. I bought it again about 4 months ago and I am glad I did. I love the leathery/sweet aroma and the dry down is magnificent. It is perfect for cool weather like today. It makes me and my nose very happy.

    27 March, 2014

    marcuslaughter's avatar

    United States United States

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    How funny to think that in 1990, as an 13 year old, I was wearing this very manly fragrance, and imagining myself as James Bond. I can remember back then thinking how this would go great with a sweater in the wintertime and would most certainly sweep any girl off her feet. Sadly, the first girl that got close enough to smell this on me, probably instantly thought of her father or grandfather, and complained about it. In college, I still had the bottle, and stupidly traded it for a bottle of Nautica or something like that, as I recall. Thankfully, I was able to find a bottle at TJ Maxx not long ago, and smelled it again, and can happily report that this is still as good today as it was to my overly-developed 13 year old nose back in 1990. If you can find it, buy it. It is a classic to me, even though I probably only wear it a few times a year... a happy memories scent, to be sure.

    24 December, 2013

    lt114's avatar



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    This scent takes me right back to my childhood, evoking plenty of pleasant memories. Definitely a powerhouse scent for me with strong projection and longevity. Nothing unisex at all here. The bergamont and rosewood hit me right from the start, and although the lavender and vanilla show up later on, the top notes last until the end for me. My only complaint is that Zino is a bit linear for me. This is still a must try for any guy out there.

    16 March, 2013

    drseid's avatar

    United States United States

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    Zino opens with a smooth bergamot and rosewood tandem. The rosewood hangs around into the heart joined by a somewhat synthetic supporting rose and wormwood duo that begins to turn powdery later-on driven by an artificial smelling vanilla rising from the base. The scent becomes a slightly sweet sandalwood and powdery vanilla double feature in the dry-down stage, with remnants of the rosewood remaining and a just slightly dirty patchouli underpinning the starring notes late. Projection and longevity are both average, with the scent lasting 6-8 hours on skin.

    Zino has quite the cult following and while I first tried it when it was released over 20 years ago and disliked it back then I hoped to have changed my opinion after all the high praise lauded on it over the years. That said, I am afraid my opinion hasn't changed one iota. Something about the powdery vanilla, rosewood and sandalwood combination just does not sit well with me (most likely the powder is the culprit). I did like the bergamot and rosewood open that for just a moment had me thinking I might change my mind, but alas Zino is just not for me and I can't force myself to like it no matter how far in the minority I may be. Zino is worth a sample if you can still find one to sniff for yourself, but I cannot recommend this 2.5 star out of 5 discontinued release, especially as it now commands relatively high prices on the resale market.

    17 January, 2013

    addyeddy's avatar



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    Bought this as a blind buy from the discount chain Wilkinsons in the UK for £20. It's a really great fragrance,strong yet not overpowering, and reminds me a little of a less sweet Pi by Givenchy. Doesn't smell dated at all.

    10th January, 2013

    Swanky's avatar

    United States United States

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    Zino has an underlying sweetness without tilting into gourmand territory. It has enough variety to appeal to an eclectic cross-section of buyers: old schoolers will enjoy the oomph, longevity and woody floral character that we enjoy in Iquitos or Salvador Dali; younger wearers used to Dunkin' Donuts pyramids will appreciate the vanilla/tonka/amber drydown; those admiring boozy, unique masculines will get off on the well-blended almost rum-like note that emerges in the heart. Nice work if you can get it.

    20th December, 2012

    OCNBreeze7's avatar

    United States United States

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    Soft leather with an oaky finish...

    I am a fan of all the Davidoff fragrances and have many of them in my collection... Zino is definitely unique in the lot. I purchased this blind about two months ago and just got around to wearing it. It was a great deal on Amazon and the reviews, with the exception of a few, are quite positive.

    Out of the gates, Zino comes out with the woodsy notes that settles into a fresh outdoors oaky finish with hints of floral and maybe a touch of vanilla. It is unique and easy on the nose. I tend to be more attracted to the citrus base note fragrances, but the peculiar thing here, is that I like Zino. It smells great.

    Zino has plenty of potential "Wow Factor" - positive comments from the ladies. Shortly after my initial application, Sweetie comments, "Whoa - what is that..?? It smells great..!!"She is a fan of the spicy/woodsy fragrances. I also received positive comments from co-workers. The projection/sillage is average, but you can definitely smell it.

    The longevity is above average, lasting about 6+ hours on the skin and a little longer on my shirtsleeve. The bottle is nothing extraordinary and the packaging is slightly above average. A check of Amazon today shows a large bottle, 4.2 ounces, is about $25.00 with Free Shipping. At that price and the uniqueness of the fragrance, you should add it to your collection.

    All things considered, I give Zino 4.1 stars out of 5. Bottom line - the scent is unique, it has potential "Wow Factor", longevity is above average, and the deal is fantastic. I definitely recommend adding to your collection. Make sure you "see the world" before it is too late...



    10th November, 2012

    And's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Once upon a time... Zino. I agree with Karazzmatic when he writes: "When a fragrance can spark memories and particular feelings, that's when it's more than a scent. It becomes an agent to the past, and a segue to the future". This fantastic and warm fragrance remember me the childhood and now when I wear it, I feel so comfortable and happy... Just like a child in the bed after he has listened to a fairy tale... And now the child is a man...
    I've found three left bottles in a perfumery in Rome. I bought them all, and I think I'm going hunting Zino around Italy.

    13 September, 2012

    MonkeyBars's avatar

    United States United States

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    Upon sampling this traditional classic for the first time, I was immediately struck by the resemblance to Guerlain's Jicky. Heritage is much sweeter with its powdery vanilla. Jicky eschews Zino's rose and would therefore never be confused with it, but I do believe they share an important conceptual underpinning: a CIVET overdose. Notice all the references to strange, dark, feral musk, rotting garbage, sexual trysts, and horseyards in the reviews below. Zino and Jicky share the classic civet-lavender-vanilla accord, where the honeylike aspects of civet and lavender mesh with, and the crisp herbaceousness of lavender and stonking animalic fur of civet temper, the sweetness of the vanilla.

    Zino's experienced perfumers decided to flank this central accord with a "pinker" rosey floral bouquet than Mssr. Guerlain, while amping up the patchouli, rich sandal, and cedar to balance their sweetness and maintain a structured masculinity. Also notable from the outset through the heart is a distinct clary sage presence, an accord which many find challenging with its vegetal intensity and almost sweaty overtones.

    The many perfectly-balanced ingredients are showcased in a different way depending on the time of day and other circumstances of a wearing; this is another intriguing quality of Zino. One day, it's dark spiky patchouli; next time, lovely blushing rose; after that, rich sandalwood and lean cedar; but next time it's warm, funky civet and sweet vanilla; next spray brings herbal lavender and clary sage, and so on.

    Jicky and Zino both feature a lemon-bergamot citrus accord and an array of light herbs at the opening, which is lovely, deep, beguiling, strange, and old-fashioned simultaneously.

    I really enjoy the olfactory profile of Zino, but wearing it is even more conflicting for me than wearing Jicky. It's old-fashioned -- I agree it's very 80s, but 1880s -- and really reminds me of an elderly gentleman. I'm not elderly so there's a bit of a mismatch. I can understand certain wearers wanting to go a bit more formal at Zino's inherent stuffiness.

    At the same time I am enthralled by the gutsy fragrance angle of an animalic overdose tempered by carefully chosen accords to mask the feral onslaught (cf. Jicky, Ungaro II, Baie de Genievre, Yatagan, Balenciaga pH) and truly enjoy every moment of this complex, moderately dense, and finely balanced creation. Certainly a thumbs-up, but wearability may not be its strong point.

    I understand the composition was hollowed out and cheapened a bit in reformulation (block letters rather than cursive on the bottle), but I have only tried the vintage. It certainly does not smell as inexpensive as it was.

    In the 90s, Ungaro II and Jaguar Mark II explored similar concepts further with a spared-down lavender-civet and a woodsier non-floral approach, respectively.

    19 August, 2012 (Last Edited: 09 December, 2012)

    's avatar



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    Truly masterpiece. Perfect sillage, perfect longevity. One of the best scent ever. Flowers, rosewood, tobacco and vanilia give us warm, pleasant aroma. The opening of Zino reminds the water after rotten flowers or seaweeds washed up on sea shore, but in heart the woodsy notes are coming and Zino starts to reminds dry tobacco. Creamy vanillia in the base creates warm and perfect finish. True masculine but romantic frgrance. Sad that it is discontinued.

    10th June, 2012 (Last Edited: 24 July, 2012)

    karazzmatic's avatar

    United States United States

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    I just got this today and at first, I thought: "Hmmmm...I can't smell it." I guess I couldn't distinguish it. Then I went away from it and actually took a shower, put on some Davidoff Cool Water Cool Summer, and went out. When I returned several hours later, I showered again and decided to spray this on before I retired. That was 3 hours ago and I am LOVING this! It has settled down quickly and turned into a suprisingly unique fragrance that has the most important effect on me: it evokes memories; it brings me back to a certain time in my life with specific friends. I don't know why, but it does.

    When a fragrance can spark memories and particular feelings, that's when it's more than a scent. It becomes an agent to the past, and a segue to the future. Please give this a try, just like I did.

    30th May, 2012

    DanWano's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Back in the 90's alot of new fragrances for men had vanilla. My theory is after the 80's when men scents were really heavy, they came with perfumes that had vanilla and/or amber to be a little bit more wearable to a larger audience. I just hated them. I think of Jean-paul Gauthier Le male, Givenchy Pi, Paloma Picasso Minotaure, all vanilla based fragrance that smell for me a little bit too feminine. The beginning of the unisex era.

    15 years later sniffing around my old samples, i came across a samples set containing 1 ml of Davidoff and 1 ml of Zino Davidoff and it was a revelation. First, Davidoff by Davidoff a great tobacco scent that kept the 80's vibes, a must have for tobacco lovers (if you can find it), then Zino Davidoff...WoW. It is soooo goooood. Can't stop smelling it. The tobacco and the vanilla with the rose and lavender combo is so gorgeous, so sexy, and it got cedar which bring the elegance. It's perfect.

    Can't wait to compare Zino to Tom Ford's Tobacco Vanilla.

    02 April, 2012

    Stratos's avatar



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    This scent is fantastic, one of my favourites for a night out. Quite strong, lasts well, very masculine and powerful. One of the best fragrances I own and wear it every opportunity I can. Not exactly for work or day wear though, I feel it is too heavy for that.

    My only criticism is that while wearing it I feel I can't live up to the sophistication of my scent. Seriously, I looked down at my clothes and thought "How can I walk around smelling like this and dressed like that!" Unless I've suited up, I can't bring myself to wear it. If you see me in a suit, you will smell me wearing Zino

    30th March, 2012

    jimmysmellworld's avatar



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    Ignore the opening, give it a chance and wear it a few times. It ends up smelling like some old roses soaked in Prada Infusion mixed with Rive Gauche and A*Men. I feel damn cool wearing this, infact anyone who wears Zino is damn cool by default; it's that sort of fragrance. It not only smells good but it's also interesting not just to my nose but the others around me. Very complex and masuline yet not offensive while still maintaining its individuality. Any occasion and any time i'll reach for this with no regrets and alot of confidence. You can find this cheap too......put the Cool Water down. This stuff is literally 'cool water'.... you know what to do. 9/10

    19 February, 2012

    dwrestle's avatar

    United States United States

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    Zino is such an amazing fragrance. I thought it was going to be a brutal 80's powerhouse, but it's actually very modern feeling to me. If they actually marketed it I have no doubt it would be a better seller than even Cool Water. It's a rose scent that seems kind of like a modern spicy oriental in a similar style of Armani Code. Although it also seems like sort of a gourmand I guess. It has sort of a sweet and spicy vanilla-ish dry down, and that is where it seems more 80's to me than modern. If it were modern it would be much sweeter and less spicy. I don't see how people can't like it.

    05 November, 2011

    Darvant's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Really a great fragrance that in its different and diverse stages of the complex development represents and embodies a middle level between a dark and sunny fragrance, a classic sharp  citrus-lavender and a modern gourmand, a masculine green, stiff fougere and a romantic almost unisex soapy woody-vanilla. In the same vein of fragrances as the more citrusy Boucheron Pour Homme and the slightly leathery and dustier Versace L'Homme, Zino starts with a clary sage, citrus-lavender and bergamot blast with hints of rosewood and spices. This starting is a bit rough, surely sharp and green but over all is multifaceted and changeful in the way there is place for the performances of each of the protagonists. This blast is the door for the following floral development with the note of geranium placed in order to reinforce the sharpness before the following soapy attack of amber-vanilla and with a starring chord of rose-lily of the valley that features the taste of the following density. The last is introduced by the new entry in scene of a vanilla, amber and sandalwood accord that is mild, dense but never cloying cause balanced by accents of cedar, musk , moss and by an earthy-smokey link of tobacco and patchouli in the way that the final smell is oily, green, distinguished with an autoritative patchouli and mild of woods and sweet powdery tobacco. A pillar and i can't understand how could anybody write in an opposite emphatic way.

    05 October, 2011 (Last Edited: 07 July, 2012)

    scenternerian's avatar

    United States United States

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    cool, fresh, herbaceous, smoky all in one.... confident and easy to wear. it's something Connery would wear. the drydown is an exceptionally light and breezy. a masterpiece.

    27 September, 2011

    Ksap's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    I don't see how anyone can enjoy this one. Thankfully I only bought a 1oz for something like 15$. It's awful. Smells like rotten fruits/flowers/garbage. I sprayed this on the back of my hand and it nearly made me vomit. So I waited to get to the heart notes. Unfortunately they weren't any better. I was hoping for something much nicer after reading all the positive reviews. Not for me that's for sure

    15 May, 2011

    silentrich's avatar

    United States United States

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    Changed my mind about Zino. At first I thought it was disgustingly dark and disturbing. Now I love the sharp Lavendar note and everything that comes with it. This one really plays tricks on your nose and it's smelled different almost every time I've worn it. There's a lot going on here but Zino will not dissappoint if you give it the chance to surprise you.

    30th March, 2011 (Last Edited: 30th June, 2011)

    PigeonMurderer's avatar

    Finland Finland

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    I'm suprised about the fact that no matter how many different kind of note pyramids I've seen of this specific fragrance, none of them mentions civet or even musk. That's weird because I could swear there is civet in this scent (that is of course a one type of musk too).
    It's possible that I've been fooled by the flood of indoles (ex. bergamot, jasmine), that could together, with tonka and patchouli, create that civet-like smell to my nose. Go figure.

    But Zino has always appeared to me as a very animalic scent, and in this case, in a concrete meaning of the word : It has this weird and wonderful furry smell to it, which actually manages to remind me alot of the smell of cat's tummy fur after a long and hot summer day outside, running free, chasing mouses, birds and stuff.

    Zino has some similarities with many other fragrances, and still it is very unique and unerringly regognizable. I admit I find the smell a bit dated when sprayed even once too much, but when reasonably applied it's actually completely timeless, sensual, classy and very masculine even though it has that sweet powder aspect with fairly lactonic drydown.

    Overall I think Zino is one of those fragrances, in which' case amount of application is especially important - has to be applied very moderately.

    A now discontinued masterpiece, made by two great noses : M. Almairac & P. Bourdon.

    28 March, 2011

    Sunsetspawn's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is a well blended fragrance that had been giving me a dark, sweet, patchouli and tea vibe as I wore it. I know there's no tea in the fragrance but I just can't help but shake the feeling. It definitely smells like it goes well with tobacco products, and considering the brand that seems apropos. Looking at the pyramid I can see that the tea vibe I was getting is because of the whole herbal, floral, tonka, vanilla combo.

    The let down, to me, is that the floral/herbal combination keeps the patchouli down. More patchouli would be more gooder, and would keep Zino from feeling flat.

    The big pluses are that Zino is very smooth, and very easy on the nose, but it remains not for me.

    28 January, 2011

    Misiek's avatar

    Poland Poland

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    Currently one of my favorite fragrances. Very masculine and long lasting. Beautiful lavender opening with nice vanilla dry down. Thumbs way up!

    14 January, 2011

    MOONB's avatar

    United States United States

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    I've been searching for a fragrance that goes with cigarette smoke for a while now, and upon discovering Zino, I had one of those Homer Simpson "D'Oh!" moments. Zino, of course! How could I neglect the house of Davidoff? They are a cigarette company after all. From the perspective of someone who is around second hand smoke, I'd say this goes perfectly. The lavender is smoothed to an almost medicinal accord, and the rosewood is so rich, warm, and realistic. The transition into a rose and geranium heart brings the requisite coolness into the mix. Everything settles nicely on amber and dark cedar. Usually I dislike cedar in fragrance, as it conjures up hamster cages, but not here. This isn't an outdoorsy woods like Azzaro PH or Yatagan. Zino is that polished humidor that's been in the family for fifty years. It was obviously designed for smokers, but it's something all men should have in their wardrobe. Another refreshing point in its favor is that Zino doesn't assault the senses in the manner of many other '80s masculines - this is no powerhouse, but one with a softened dry down. I really can't see how anyone could find it unpleasant, as it offers a slightly sweet, woody silage. This is also infinitely more distinctive than Cool Water. Wear it with pride.

    09 January, 2011

    jtd's avatar

    United States United States

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    Review Zino

    With Zino, I felt for the longest time that I was missing something. I don’t find it interesting or appealing. To me it’s a bit of a stew. The balance is off. In particular there are too many other broad, rich notes (rosewood, sandalwood, amber, patchouli, vanilla) that are somehow reduced to a flat sweetness. The Guerlain-style trick of salting a vanillic amber with herbs really fails here. (Funny, then that Zino is often compared to Heritage, one of few Guerlain amber-oriental that doesn’t use the Guerlinade trick.) Whether it’s the sweet but flat backdrop, or simply the wrong rose I find the combination just uncomfortable. Perhaps this type of aromatic woody rose masculine just isn’t my bag. Zino reminds me a good bit of Ungaro III, another fragrance whose critical success evades me.

    Actually both Zino and Ungaro III bring home an important point for me. I may not like them myself, and what I buy and wear will be guided by my own pleasure. But critical discussion of perfume will involve our preferences as well as objectivity, analysis and imagination.

    18 December, 2010 (Last Edited: 03 May, 2012)

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    I like Zino quite a bit. I've heard this one compared a lot to Guerlain's Heritage. I don't find them all that similar personally. Zino is really sort of a floral fougere with oriental tenancies. The base notes color the entire perfume at the onset. The top notes are not nearly as nuclear as other reviews had led me to believe; they are actually quite stately. The lavender, citrus and slightly herbaceous top notes are sweetened and darkened at the outset by the smoldering scent of tonka, and patchouli from the base. As the top notes burn off, the rose becomes quite prominent with the jasmine and muget accord giving roundness and depth to an already fairly three dimensional rose. The woodiness of santal and cedar in the base rises up next and is sweetened by vanilla and amber. There is a bit of a rasp at the far end of the dry down from the remnants of patchouli and cedar, but nothing that is all that upsetting, but the composition does tend to fall apart just a bit. All in all, Zino is a very nice ride, but it ends rather abruptly. Sprayed on skin I get about 2 or 3 hours, and on fabric 6 hours tops. The sillage seems like it will be fairly aggressive on first application, but Zino very quickly pulls it all in and stays a bit closer to the skin than one might first expect.

    11th December, 2010

    Mario-K's avatar

    Poland Poland

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    Love this scent. I always get compliments from girls and ladies. Unique aroma and lasts all day. Good, classy evergreen...

    10th December, 2010

    Bartlebooth's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    It is beginning to get very easy to dismiss Davidoff fragrances as all fluff and no substance. Certainly when I have sampled the latest mall offering from this once excellent company, I am compelled to wonder where it went wrong. At least with Zino I can remember the better times.

    The quite excellent rendering of soft aromatic woods, lavender, and a smooth vanilla base, make this easily the best thing the company has ever produced. There is something a little dirty that lurks in the soul of Zino, some distant sexual deviancy not quite resolved. This distinct darker side adds another layer of interest to an already attractive product

    27 August, 2010

    Oldspice's avatar

    United States United States

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    Awesome! Opens with a big blast of lavender. A smooth, mellow, sweet rose scent. The woods in the base are slightly earthy and reminiscent of dried leaves in fall. A romantic wear, nighttime fragrance. Potency/sillage are on the weaker side but longevity is good.

    I'm a late-comer to this one and am surprised it's being discontinued.

    25 June, 2010

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