Perfume Reviews

Reviews of 8 88 by Comme des Garçons

Total Reviews: 26
metallic gold smell, pretty artificial but nice... a must have for all this house's hardcore fans!
03rd March, 2017
My personal bias dictates 888 is hideously offensive, nauseatingly rich and cloying, and smells like an 80 year old woman. It may be interpreted as smelling like "gold," IF you hate gold, and the aforementioned "gold" has a tendency bludgeon and suffocate you when in its presence.
Trying to be (more) objective, it smells like loudly amplified and obtusely generic floral, and synthetic saffron (neither note is one I would actively seek in a fragrance). I have never been repulsed by any fragrance in the way I am repulsed by 888; I dry-heaved upon smelling it, and that's NOT an exaggeration.
While I love MANY of CDG's releases, and consider them a house of multiple masterpieces, I feel they proverbially crapped the bed by releasing this.
Of course everyone has different tastes/opinions, but I see no redeeming value in this towering abomination.
Moving on...
29th December, 2016
The pepper, saffron(ish), turmeric opening is kind of unique. It isn't my idea of the concept of gold, though that inspiration seems more something to spin this fragrance on. It may not have to end up where it started, so I'll just acknowledge the seed at the heart of this of a sort of cool, solid mineralic strength, a seriousness.
It is on me, very dry, herbal, and centered. This odd saffron doesn't in any way warm my skin, like it usually does. I don't pick up the florals other people have mentioned, or any amber in the dry down. That would have made it more wearable for me. Instead it became even more uncomfy - aggressively aromatic herbs, like a raspy dry wild thyme bush. I couldn't find a resonance with this one.
04th April, 2015
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Genre: Woods

Fragrance houses don’t always do themselves favors with their advertising copy. Comme des Garçons’ 8 88 is a case in point: its smell is supposed to evoke a gold ingot, a notion so patently silly that it bears no further discussion.

What I like best about 8 88 is its marvelously juicy bergamot top note. You know, the one that’s there to make you buy the perfume before you have time to stop and think about it. After that comes a perfectly pleasant but mundane combination of spiced amber and woods so non-descript that to call it no great shakes is to overstate its case. Maybe Comme des Garçons ought to think about releasing fewer scents. The house could once be relied upon for innovative compositions at reasonable prices, but with fragrances like 8 88 and their Monocle and Luxe lines they’ve taken to peddling redundancy and mediocrity at a premium.
08th June, 2014
Unique. Strangely, Mr Turin gives a muted review, but its a matter of taste I guess.
Remains within my top five of all time. Saffron? Mmmmmm.
11th April, 2013
Tried this last Saturday. Very interesting scent that seems to go very feminine in the dry drown. But like some of the others here, I keep smelling it back and sometimes I'm like "mmmmm, this is very nice" and five minutes later I feel like this is very empty and I don't want to smell this way. But I keep going back to give it a sniff, only therefore I am giving it a thumbs up. In a real limbo on this one.
01st April, 2013
This is perfect take on geranium! Made to be scent for office , unlike joyfull PDN chic
geranium wrapped up in saffron and incense, so it becomes unisex, but still i think its more appealing to women then men maybe,

So well done, and beautiful scent! I bit like clouded, dry day, unlike chic, that represents sunny chearful, fresh water surrounding
07th October, 2012
I have Man 2 and Skai from CDG - but 8 88 with it's light floral, amber heart doesn't hold my attention or interest me much in comparison with the other more distinctive scents in the range, unfortunately. Disappointing.
12th March, 2011
I like a judicious sweetness in my perfumes, and 8 88 has it in just the right amount. It smells just on the tasteful side of bubblegum, and yet has a pungency and aromatic nature which gives it character and strength which sets it apart from the horrid bubblegum and berries confections which are so common these days.

I like the warmth and cleaness of this frangrance, and I love its soft floral heart. It's a great unisex smell for balmy summer evenings.
29th July, 2010
For me, saffron has never been a spectacular note which has much to say by its own; more of a humble, timid player, a little uncomfortable because of its cuisine relations, and behaving more like a taste than a smell in many occasions.
And here it is, exposed, forced to be as loud and shiny as it gets. Geranium helps a lot in brightening its thick, dense quality, making it almost fresh and transparent in the beginning. Then an oriental mixture of amber, vanilla and maybe patchouli makes it warmer and really beautiful.
Saffron is present from the beginning till end. But it's the notes that support it that hold my interest. In the end, 8 88 is a somehow tweaked oriental scent. Yet it has less presence than most orientals; it's a kind, humble friend who, although gaining attention, feels more comfort to stay in the shadow.
13th July, 2010
Strange. Not the scent per se, but the concept. Supposed to smell like gold? Vibert says silly, I agree. It smells like a high-end shampoo. But that is part of its strength. What do you wear when you do not want to smell like 'perfume' or 'cologne' yet you need to smell curiously pleasant? Reach for a bottle of 8 88. Unisex is right on, which makes it a candidate for round 2 post coitus and a shower the following morning, where the bliss of the night before still lingers. 8 88 works for that. It is also perfect for a signature scent for someone who does not like heavy scents. Not worth the price for sure, it is simply too generic in feel. However, the most premium generic scent I have ever encountered. Last for ages on clothes too. As much as I want to rate this neutral, I must rate it thumbs up. I haven't been able to stop smelling it, though it is empty and unintriguing everytime I sniff it.
05th April, 2010
This is a brilliant fragrance. It is light and delicate and sort of reminds me of a Floris perfume I bought my wife once. I get the impression a cool breeze wafting over a mixture of white flowers. The smell lasts for ages, I have a scarf that still smells of this after I sprayed it two months ago. The way the floral smell is delivered is definitely masculine in a light refined sense. This is something I would wear in the daytime at any time of year. Some men may be put off by the floral scent and may find it a touch effeminate. I think this is a scent for the mature, confident and elegant thinking man. Note that I would describe myself that way. I think this may be my next purchase.
18th January, 2010
Another big let down for me from CDG. I was so curious what this metal smell could be like. I now wonder if it is because of my sensitivity to synthetics. CDG is known for their artificial scents. Or whatever.

I just didn't like this.

I smelled the saffron very clearly, and then it was all amber. Everything else was sort of muddled in the background. It wasn't horrible, but something is missing. I don't even want to keep the sample.
28th November, 2009
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Sybarite Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Contrary to one of the above reviewers, I did not find a strong geranium note in this scent at all ! (??) ... Geranium is a note that's usually very easily discernible, for it does tend to easily overpower and overshadow other notes (even when in small amounts). It aint exactly a shy note, distinctive as it is !
But here, I actually could not discern it much, it's used very judiciously, and is well integrated in the blend. (So I would not avoid this scent if you're weary of the geranium note alone). ...
By far the most prominent notes are the saffron, pepper and curcuma spice. All blended with a lovely sweetness at first, which recedes as the scent progresses.
I really liked "8 88", and it is quite "warm and bright" ... but, try as I might, I'm afraid I did not really find it reminiscent of the scent of gold particularly. Probably because, to me, gold would smell far louder, more brash and much gaudier overall ! :o) (But that's just me, and quite irrelevant to it's enjoyment, of course) Though it does at least pick up an appropriate somewhat metallic tone/note, as it develops, which helps the "gold" illusion.
Of course it makes perfect sense that the "golden" saffron (well burnt orange more like!) was chosen as the note perfect to depict "gold". Seeing it's one of the most precious oils, being even more expensive than it's weight in gold . (Had they used the genuine deal, that is, and not just the much cheaper "brass" imitation "safraline"). So the "associations" are good, if somewhat predictable.
Though I still find it a successful composition, and pretty sophisticated a scent !
10th October, 2009
I really the first few hours of this. It's very interesting and quite hard to describe since the more I wear it the more I notice about it. However, the final stages of the dry-down (8-9 hours or so) are basically a womens talcum powder and not a particularly nice one either. That's the only negative thing about this. It's far from my favourite CdG but it definitely has it's place.
27th September, 2009
This is far too vague and inexpressive to gain much interest from me. If you could bottle pretension, it would look a lot like 888. The faux exotic ingredients are a good indicator that this is going to be all smoke and mirrors. A dull, uninspiring opening is followed by an identikit floral dry down, with few surprises or pleasures. Clean, predictable, and very boring.
30th July, 2009
Watery peppery scent, smells like a nondescript washed "perfume" like any number of women's scents from the dollar store.. Weak and uninspired. Sharp, sour, metallic, green... all notes that don't say "love me". Dries down into a talcum powder like rub but without the powdery texture, this amber base feels really dull.
20th April, 2009

A couple of new words for me to learn here: safraleine and curcuma – I googled “curcuma” and it turns out to be wild turmeric. “Safraleine” is the synthetic saffron already discussed by other reviewers Had I known that 8 88 has a major saffron note, I wouldn’t have bothered testing it, and I would have been the loser in that decision. This particular saffron – safraleine – is obviously not the same saffron note that I dislike in other fragrances. I have come to love this one. It is not as strong nor is it as annoying as other saffron notes. Safraleine, in combination with the coriander, pepper, and wild turmeric, is rich and inviting. I didn’t like it the first few times I tried it. Now I love it. The rich safraleine accord that I get in the opening dominates the fragrance for fifteen or twenty minutes. The coriander and pepper(wood) in the background broaden the dimension of the accord, but I can’t identify the wild turmeric of the opening – I would assume that it is there tweaking the saffron, but I can’t identify how it is doing that. The saffron accord is outstanding, but I am disappointed at how weak the incense note comes through to me. It’s there, but it just doesn’t make it across to me enough, so I feel I am missing much of the breadth of the 8 88 because I love well-done incense notes and I think that, in time, this fragrance could use that extra dimension. As lovely and rich as the saffron / spice note of the opening is, it thins down to a vague, unfulfilling linear wisp to my nose. When the drydown arrives, it, too, is a bit of a letdown when compared to the opening. The drydown is an attractive patchouli / amber that is quite elegant and beautiful, retains a bit of the spices, and is too understated; on my skin it is a skin scent. 8 88 has very good longevity. I find that my nose quickly tires from the notes and, as I move through the fragrance, I have to avoid sniffing it for fifteen minutes before I can again catch its accords. I applaud the creativity and beauty of this fragrance but wish that the middle and base had more presence. Except for the first half-hour its wearability is a minor disappointment, but still, because of its creativity and the excellent opening, I feel impelled to give 8 88 a reluctant thumbs up.

19th February, 2009
Bigsly Show all reviews
United States
This seems to be a love it or hate it fragrance, so I'll give it a neutral ! The reason why relates to my dislike of geranium if featured prominently, which I'm guessing is the case here. I can certainly imagine many liking this, especially if they like fragrances that have little or no sweetness, but I also get the "insect repellent" vibe too. It comes across as "harsh green" but slightly "metallic aquatic" to me. It did not come across as an incense fragrance, though. I'd like to know what would happen if the geranium was cut down and more amber was added to the formula (possibly more saffron and incense too). I get my saffron fix from Derek Jeter Driven Black, which is constructed more to my olfactory sensibility. This is definitely a sample first fragrance.
06th December, 2008
888 is one of my current favorite perfumes but it is so artfully blended and unusual that I can't figure it out. For some reason, I always think I smell a bit of red or black grape in 888 (a la Mona di Orio's Nuit Noire). At other times it seems like a wonderful spicy mixture of white flowers (esp. orange flower) and white musk. The "official" information put out by Comme des Garcons is that 888 is meant to smell like gold but whatever it is, it always smells wonderful and "like me". And like a magpie attracted to shiny objects, I can't get enough of 888's stylishly flat gold bottle. Divine!

Per The Perfumed Court, here are the notes for 888: "Safraline (a molecular derivative of saffron, created by Givaudan), pepperwood, curcuma, coriander, geranium and amber."
03rd December, 2008
Metallic pepper overlaying a heart of rich saffron and incense. I love the smell of this stuff, and it keeps up the show all day long.

Unfortunately it makes me feel dizzy even if I apply a tiny amount. I've had to part with my bottle, which is a real shame. Still giving it a thumbs up, as i can't blame Antoine Lei for my allergy!
06th September, 2008
loomi Show all reviews
United States
8 88 opens with tiny fireworks. The pepper and saffron tingle together superbly. Since I have just tried 8 88, I'm afraid that I didn't identify the geranium note. Maybe the geranium is the key for the pleasantly astringent opening.
After a minute, the amber started to kick into place, and I thought, "8 88 is pretty." This is when the gold analogy that is part of the reputation of 8 88 perfume felt true to me. The sillage is moderate and dominated by amber and patchouli.
Sometime after five minutes I started to realize 8 88 has a lush complexity without sweetness in a tier of classics along with CK Obsession. Particularly the notes of cocuma and safraline together threw me at the five minute point. 8 88 about overpowered my senses at that point, an I was completely surprised. At this point when I got feedback about 8 88 by a lady friend, she said, "I like it." At this time a man, when quiered for his opinion after five minutes, said that he didn't like it.
Uncharacteristic of CdG scents, 8 88 settled for me into a trusty, clean smell that gave me a familiar, comforting, up close and golden aura.
I am sure that everyone will not pick up 8 88, and, in my book that is an attribute. In my opinion, this is not a scent for a beginner in wearing perfume. The dazzling complexity of the development of 8 88 lends this scent a rating of imperative for trying by us who want to live in the future of today.
31st July, 2008
JaimeB Show all reviews
United States
At first blush, woods and pepper moderated by incense and saffron. This also claims a rhizome called curcuma, which can be (among many other things) turmeric, the spice that gives a yellow color to Indian curries — but I doubt that would be much use to a perfumer; instead, this reminds me of a rhizome I met in Indonesian cookery called 'kencur' (or as it was spelled in the Dutch colonial days there, 'kentjoer'), which is called zedoary in English. It has a slightly bitter but vaguely floral-fruity undertone which I think seems to fit in with what I can detect in 8 88. This is definitely a haunting fragrance, with an air of mystery and exoticism about it. Very engaging, with a touch of floriental in the heart and an amber-patchouli finish. It's quite well-done in the off-beat style so typical of Comme des Garçons.

It's credited to Antoine Lie at the Estonian website, which lists the following pyramid:
Top Notes: Pepper Wood, Coriander, Curcuma
Middle Notes: Geranium, Incense, Saffron
Base Notes: Amber, Patchouli
09th June, 2008
8 88 has the same mosquito repellant note as CdG 2 and Kyoto - must be their trademark, CdG's "Guerlinade"! Well, it sure is original, at least... 8 88 does not have the same emphasis on "dark" notes like incense, vetiver, cedar as the other two, instead it has a much more sweet and floral top and is oddly lacking in basenotes. This makes it sheerer and lighter than the other two, but also more high-pitched. I don't know what's worse really, the dense intensity of the mosquito repellant note in CdG 2 and Kyoto or the high-pitched, yes metallic, tone of it in 8 88. 8 88 smells like a lady out hiking who has had to ruin her floral perfume with mosquito repellant and gets warm and sweats away most of the mixed fragrance while the remaining traces turn even more sharp and sour...
23rd May, 2008

Safraline is a molecular derivative of saffron created by Swiss perfume house Givaudan. The perfume is inspired by the initial question of knowing whether gold has a smell and then the idea of finding an olfactory equivalent of it....
I was a little worried about this new launch, specially after the huge deception on the luxe range. The idea based on the recreation of how could gold smell like, made me wonder for a little while, and I had flashing images in my mind of a tacky, terrible, overly power scent.
Well; what a great surprise. The perfume is superb.
The bottle is very appealing and exhudes luxury itself; it's a shinny gold version of the original pebble-like design of the company.
The juice could be easily going into the Guerilla series, they have a very alike character.

It's based in the saffron, curcuma, pepper and amber in an arid strange way.
To me nose, 888, opens light and zesty with pepper note, melting with a fiery , grant slap of playful coriander,a nd there's a bubblely effervescent gorgeous accent going on oin the background.
I can detect the synthetic saffron straight away, flying around the whole formula, showing off its own presence.
The initial sniff , to my nose, is kind of feminine, but it doesn't bother me at all. It could be definitely a Guerilla 2 old brother, but as it's settling down, the perfume get a nice gorgeous character. The safraline share path with hints of nice metallic geranium leaves that melts with the curcuma brings a vague hint of metallic sour mustard like odour..
I have to admit that the blend of safraline and curcuma gives a feminine twist of the whole perfume, but it's enough pleasant to be wore by a man.

The fragrance keeps heady and confortable while the drydown introduces the amber that add a warm twist to the whole formula.
The drydown is dry and bitter.
I realy like this scent, as much of the other Comme des garçons line, simply beacuse I'm a big fan of the company.
I probably have to try twice to get used of the arid, acrid aura that float around you when you wear it .
It decants a little to the feminine side, but who cares really?
08th May, 2008
Kaern Show all reviews
United Kingdom
I have changed my mind about this fragrance. It's not really happening for me. After the initial spray, well it's hard to detect anything except maybe a weak peppery aroma. The secret is to wait for hours (it evolves all day) until something really emerges, which is the safraline (basically saffron), coriander and amber, which gives it an incensey feel. The first time I wore it, this was quite strong and heady, but the second time wasn't so. This is CDG's interpretation of what Gold should smell like and there is a metallic note running through it, which I'm not that keen on. Can't thumbs down though because the initial wearing was truly nice. It's a strange one.

14th April, 2008 (last edited: 18th April, 2008)