Reviews of John Varvatos by John Varvatos

    Find out more about John Varvatos by John Varvatos in the Basenotes Fragrance Directory


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    RichNTacoma's avatar
    RichNTacoma
    United States United States

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    A shock

    I love the smell of this one. It has a sensual fruity quality, almost as if the fruits are on the edge of being overly ripe. There is richness in the basenotes, something musky and a bit dark. The only problem I have is the projection is not great, and the longevity is lacking.

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    So, here is a problem; this makes me nauseous half the time I wear it. I have now worn it about 6 more times, and three of them I have felt sick. There is something in the initial sweetness that does not agree with me. A few more wears, and my bottle might go to someone who can enjoy it more consistently than I can.

    04 July, 2013

    fan.of.devin's avatar
    fan.of.devin
    United States United States

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    Underrated

    Smells uncannily like a more mature version of Paco Rabanne's 1 Million.
    Interesting stuff, though I only sampled it and cannot attest to the longevity or sillage.

    02 June, 2013

    Possum-Pie's avatar
    Possum-Pie
    United States United States

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    I feel this is a step above the long lines of generic citrus dept. store fragrances...barely. It isn't linear like most, the dates and vanilla give it some depth. I did not get excited by it, I would wear it if I had it but wouldn't buy it.

    05 May, 2013

    pdxtony's avatar
    pdxtony


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    People have said great things about this fragrance and they are all true.
    I have had compliments from women of all ages.
    Probably my fall/winter signature fragrance now.

    04 May, 2013

    Buysblind's avatar
    Buysblind
    United States United States

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    A very original smelling and interesting perfume to say the least. It seems like no one's experience with John Varvatos is quite the same. I get a sort of dark cherry note in the top , brought about by the tamarind and date fruit which sticks around for a while as the fragrance moves into a spicy mid (cinnamon, coriander) and finally a vanilla/leather base. I've always felt like the bottle represents this fragrance pretty well. It's dark, but smooth and approachable. John Varvatos is well-suited for the winter and could also be considered something of a romantic fragrance.

    One thing I think everyone can agree on is that this fragrance is MOODY. As others have stated, on some days the projection is through the roof and on others it's minimal. The same goes for the longevity. And there are times when Varvatos maintains a tight, solid structure throughout its duration, and others when it seems to fall apart before your eyes, each note separating from the whole and bouncing around in a discordant frenzy. Its inconsistency is the only thing, in my opinion, keeping John Varvatos from being a truly great perfume, or designer classic. It has so many great things going on--yet it's marked by this one tragic flaw. That said, I still think it's a very good fragrance and one that I thoroughly enjoy wearing...most of the time.

    22 December, 2012

    knightowl's avatar
    knightowl
    United States United States

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    Could benefit from better-quality ingredients, but its good enough for a thumbs up.

    11th November, 2012

    PerfumeCollector's avatar
    PerfumeCollector
    United States United States

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    Generally I like 70's and 80's powerhouses and despise "modern" perfumes that smell wimpy and afeminate. Powerhouses are strong, dominant and with an attitude. Don't get me wrong, I like ladies perfumes that have character like Black Orchid, Norell and Arpege (and I have worn them in occasions), what I dislike is the lack of personality of modern perfumes like Chrome, L'eau d'Issey and A. di Gio.
    John Varvatos by John Varatos may be a modern perfume, but has character, personality and also some attitude. Is not a powerhouse, but is clearly a ubermasculine, a perfume that stands tall in the middle of today's mediocrity.
    It is also highly unusual with notes I have never smelled in any perfume before so you will not be smelling like the thousands of clones out in the market.
    An outstanding perfume that is innovative, bold and with cojones in a sea of wimpy scents that dominate the industry today.

    05 November, 2012

    kassana's avatar
    kassana


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    Long time site enthusiast and I generally lurk the fragrance directory getting tips and buying loads of fragrances recommended by people on this site.

    I've never been compelled to write a review. Until now. I bought this via a friend for very cheap. Read a few things on it and thought I can't go wrong with what i paid for it.

    Anyway, it's one of the most unique powerhouse of smells in the history of commercial mass produced fragrances. Openings of sweet dates and spices is overpowering. The dry down is the best, it's smells like leather and roses infused with a real raw masculinity.

    Honestly,this is the stuff.

    09 August, 2012

    schwrtz5's avatar
    schwrtz5
    United States United States

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    In the heartnotes there is a sickly sweet note reminiscent of Joop. The drydown gets slightly better...

    22 July, 2012

    nfn1983's avatar
    nfn1983
    Iran Iran

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    After reading many positive reviews of it I was really curious to test it.
    As it's a relatively rare fragrance in my country it took several months to find a sample!
    At first I got average top notes which regarding aforementioned positive reviews nearly disappointed me, coz I expected a differently lovely scent from it. but after a while turned to lovely partially sweet warm notes that made me partially satisfied with the fragrance.
    But wait, how familiar this scent is to me!
    Yes, I get 90% base notes of CARLOS SANTANA for men! believe me, if you don't give a try!
    Not a unique & must buy one, but good to have. I'll buy because I love Carlos Santana, but rare to find another one!
    Finally pointing to its reasonable price I'll give it a WEAK thumbs up!

    29 June, 2012

    Doc.T 1977's avatar
    Doc.T 1977
    United States United States

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    I'm not going to say this is a bad fragrance, However, I do believe it could use some assistance. I would classify this as a dark fragrance, in many ways similar to Hugo Dark Blue. Or on other words like a dark woodsy oriental.

    I am giving this a neutral
    First, the bad. While it is a darker scent, to me it seems to have no real direction. There is a slight Dr. Peppery note in there that I do enjoy however. It also seems to last fairly well without being overpowering and the scent dries to a darker sandalwood / amber type of accord. You could get a good 8 hours out of this without dousing yourself in it. A little goes a long way here.

    23 March, 2012

    Capone's avatar
    Capone


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    JV is really a rich sophisticated and sexy masterpiece with vanilla, precious woods and a leather with some sweetness from the figs giving this an almost fignewton gormorand feel and a powdery vanilla finish


    i dont care about the lasting power the scent is amazing and i love this stuff

    17 March, 2012

    Darvant's avatar
    Darvant
    Italy Italy

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    Quite an interesting modern masculine fruity fragrance with a dark temperament, a slightly boozy-herbal vibe and a soft background. The scent combines a huge quantity of synthetic fruits (red fruits, citrus, exotic fruits, watery fruits), with hints of herbs (rosemary, myrtle, thyme, lavender), floral notes and leather over a base of balsams, musk, gourmand notes (dark chocolate?) and resinous woods. The smell reminds me a bit the one from Canali Black Diamond and ends very smooth and leathery with hints of fruitiness. The scent is not unpleasant, on the contrary the smell exudes a captivating aura but unfortunately i smell a sheer detergent feel in the synthetic background that reports instead to me the idea of bath-shower foam. I write "not bad" because of the nice dark smell but i say "what a pity" because of its too much artificial and "candy kind" texture and its too shy final temperament.

    22 February, 2012

    yoshimittsu's avatar
    yoshimittsu
    United States United States

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    OUT OF ALL JV THIS ONE IS THE BEST ... LET it just settle and then it is so pleasant.

    27 January, 2012

    orangefiction's avatar
    orangefiction
    United States United States

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    Sweet fruity smells good. Safe versatile scent good for many occasions.

    24 September, 2011

    commodity12's avatar
    commodity12


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    this is my evening scent ...nice musk and woody smell

    05 September, 2011

    barclaydetolly's avatar
    barclaydetolly
    United States United States

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    To me, it smells like someone spilled cherry cough syrup on a leather jacket, and allowed the cough syrup to dry. It's not a bad smell, necessarily, but I don't think I want to smell anything like this. It is unique, and I can see why some may like it, especially in colder weather.

    05 August, 2011

    thatguy73's avatar
    thatguy73
    United States United States

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    The first cologne I ever bought. A good fall fragrance for me.
    Initially I get a sort of red cherry or maybe plum kind of smell with some spices. Some think this smells medicinal, and I can see why, but it doesn't smell bad to me. This is definately a darker, syrupy sort of juice. Eventually dries down into an accord of vanilla and leather on my skin that I quite enjoy.
    I think the projection is a little under average. Not too weak to be smelled, but people only tend to notice it if they're fairly close. People who have hugged me, for example compliment me on it, and ocassionally people about an arm's length away will take notice. I don't count this as bad necesarilly, because, depending on the circumstance, you're not necesarilly trying to fill up the room with your scent.
    Longevity for me is ok. It will last me an entire school day, but I don't think it's ever carried too much weight after seven or eight hours on my skin.
    I've worn it casually, formally, and even out on a date night. I think it's fairly versatile.
    Overall, a nice, cool weather scent. Everyone who's smelled it on me has complimented me on it.

    26 April, 2011

    cja75's avatar
    cja75
    United States United States

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    Very good winter fragrance to me. Its a "dark" sort of a scent very masculine sort of a mix of fresh and green mixed with a gormand (coffee or chocolate or something) I like it as one of my winter favorites along with rochas

    24 March, 2011

    Grottola's avatar
    Grottola
    United States United States

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    Meh. Nothin' special, just a spicy-sweet cinnamon fragrance like Carlos Santana for Men or (a less annoying) 1 Million.

    03 March, 2011

    PradaG's avatar
    PradaG
    United States United States

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    This scent reminds me of leathery trees in a mossy forest. I went sampling at a local perfume shop and of all the fragrances I tried on paper that day, I told myself I would leave spraying this one (JV) on my neck. Great smell but WEAK longevity. After going trigger happy with the bottle in the store, I only got a couple hours with this one. This makes a great: poker night with the buddies while drinking whiskey scent.

    09 February, 2011

    obscura's avatar
    obscura
    United States United States

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    This is the fragrance that first caused me to pay attention to--and then love--perfume. JV came out while I was working at a department store, but it didn't attract as much attention as many of the other fragrances. I was looking for something distinctive, and the spicy, leathery notes of JV won my heart.

    However, as I've grown as a perfumisto, JV has grown to feel thin to my nose, without the depth I want to pretend is there. That said, I still think it is a pleasant, distinctive fragrance that is at the very least more interesting than many of the masculines on the market. Although it's longevity isn't great, I have gotten many compliments on it over the years, and I still wear it when I'm feeling nostalgic for my department store years....

    01st February, 2011

    SirScent's avatar
    SirScent
    United States United States

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    John Varvatos has a deep, mysterious quality that I like.
    The initial burst of berries and dates dry down nicely to a rich, warm leather.
    Definitely a masculine fragrance that appears formal to me but I am certain would work in casual settings also.
    My problem is the longevity.
    The initial spray, powerful as it is, soon fades and the scent only lasts a few (wonderful) hours.
    It still remains one of my favorite EDTs .
    Just wish the perfumers would work on a bit more longevity for this one.
    Thumbs Up!

    31st January, 2011

    RUDOLFO512's avatar
    RUDOLFO512
    United States United States

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    This fragrance is one of my all time favorites. I bought it two years ago, and I have been wearing it since. It lasts a very long time on me and people are always asking me what I am wearing.

    14 January, 2011 (Last Edited: 20th January, 2011)

    kpsunil's avatar
    kpsunil


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    Great fragrance. Longevity is, well non existent. Projection is weak as well. This gets a thumbs up for the fragrance part.

    11th December, 2010

    Dkmode83's avatar
    Dkmode83
    United States United States

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    I really like this fragrance. Great smell for all occasions. Some longevity issues on my skin longest I have every gotten is 8 hours which is decent. Definitely wear this a lot and get tons of compliments. Well done JV.

    28 November, 2010

    PaladinX's avatar
    PaladinX


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    I would have given this scent a thumbs up on the scent alone. It has a lot of wild and unique fragrance notes inside. They are very well balanced and blended, and you get a nice sweet dark cherry/plum vibe along with a mixture of spices, vanilla and soft leather. The only main problem with this cologne is the projection and longevity is not good at all. It is a very weak and subtle fragrance. For the cooler months in the winter this might lack the staying power. If this was stronger, I think it would be an excellent winter fragrance. I say john varvatos would be more suited for the fall months as it is. Overall nice smell, unique, Great mixture of fruit and spices.. and the price is great. You can get it very affordable online. Downside, Projection and longevity. Certainly not the panty dropper, however, Maybe great for a night out for a couple hours at a fancy restaurant.

    08 October, 2010

    EseveN's avatar
    EseveN
    Brazil Brazil

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    Very very interesting fragrance. Smells sooo great!!

    Actually, my favorite fragrance. Manly, sensual, a little sweet.

    I recommend it to everyone who wants something different.
    Good for warm nights.

    It would be a perfect fragrance, if not for it's longevity.
    Longevity is only average.
    Not a problem if you use an atomizer to re-apply.

    Rating:
    9.5

    06 October, 2010

    AdamOhio's avatar
    AdamOhio


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    Although I have not been wearing this much over the summer, it is very near the top of my list. The mix of fruit (mostly fig?) and leather works for me. I describe it as a "happy and contented" concoction. Sillage and longevity are not serious issues for me.

    16 August, 2010

    Brutus's avatar
    Brutus


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    Rather weak juice, as TropiRock complains. My wrist required quite a generous splash to appreciably bring out the dimensions of the scent. Immediate notes are astringent and grassy with flickerings of apple spirits far off, this then swiftly and dramatically changes to a bright and sugary blue-green accord of jasmine and cinnamoned vanilla; this latter note comes to dominate the middle of the fragrance as the jasmine cools. For the half-hour to 45 minutes that the vanilla ran the show this fragrance was much too buttery-cinnabun rich and linear for my taste, but as the vanilla wanes the mellowed jasmine is uncovered once again and the result, for a very short while, is a delicately sweet, much softer, and lightly floral recapitulation of the initial jasmine-vanilla confection. In a word, this final stage of the fragrance smells like one might imagine Santa Claus would smell, albeit, Santa imagined not as a cartoonish caricature but as a magical, ageless fellow. All this isn't to say that this scent is clearly appropriate for any age. I'd say that young men should only wear it if they feel comfortable in one of dad's old hand-me-down Stafford sweaters, sipping scotch or eggnog at a family gathering, perhaps with a very chaste date. This stays very close to the skin. In sum, it certainly won't raise the ladies' body temperatures, but it might add something to the pleasantness of an evening near the fire with friends and family---only, however, if applied a good hour in advance of one's plans, as that middle vanilla salvo is indeed a caricature.

    25 July, 2010

    Showing 1 to 30 of 135.