Regardless of what Armani may claim in the accompanying olfactory pyramid for this fragrance, the opening of this fragrance smells like lime to me--a nice, bitter, three-dimensional slice of squeezed lime, with peel and pith included. Then the lime breaks apart. I smell something faintly like finely ground black pepper, which feels diffused in that weird way that says "cashmeran." Then there's an equally diffused neroli, its edges further trimmed by a distinctly woody, somewhat synthetic vanilla base that rises from beneath. The effect seems somehow like a darkened, muted type of transparency, or maybe translucency, but not with the softness of gossamer--rather, with the stiffness of a metal screen.
I think I understand the Armani aesthetic well enough to know what's going on here--in general, take exuberant "natural" notes and submit them to a rigorous tamping-down to the prescribed house shades of greige. This can work with some fragrances: incense, for example, generally holds up well under the Armani treatment. On the other hand, a freshie (like this one) seems almost beside the point, since it doesn't really smell fresh for long enough to matter. I don't mind a bit of metal in my green scents, but I prefer them brighter, crisper, and livelier than this. Eau de Jade isn't an awful perfume, but it's not doing anything to justify its price tag. And this style really is the cutting edge of 2004.
15th July, 2016 (last edited: 05th February, 2017)
Simple juicy lemons and simple sneezingly hot black or white peppers. When peppers gone you got only lemon. It is flat no better than many more complicated lemons like Eau des Merveilles by Hermès or Erolfa by creed or Suivez-Moi by Fragonard or any hundreds or more bergamot lemon colognes....
What's so prive about it? That's what I found myself asking as I put on Eau de Jade from the Armani Prive collection. Average-smelling, this is an unspectacular citrusy cologne with a hint of pepper. I certainly did not find it worthy of its high-end retail price of $100+. I couldn't even justify spending $30 on it at Marshall's.
Neroli. One of my favorite notes. I love Neroli Sauvage by Creed and Castile by Penhaligon's. This is a peppery neroli. The drydown is boozy like Paul Smith London. I don't get any vanilla, though. Kinda meh but not terrible.