Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Wonderwood by Comme des Garçons

Total Reviews: 41
Wonderwood is an odd one for me. In theory it should have been a no brainer because - a CdG scent comprising wood, wood and more wood? Sounds like it should be right up my alley.

I first sampled it on paper several times, and it just never agreed with me. I think it was the first scent I had ever smelled with a prominent synthetic oud accord and there was something about the way the nutmeg, woods, and oud combined that turned my stomach in the way they clashes. I think the nutmeg just had too many associations with custard tarts and the like.

So, a few years later I was lucky enough to be sent a sample and actually took the leap to sampling it on my skin, and the balance of notes worked much better for me. The nutmeg no longer seemed as prominent and I had several years if smelling various oud accords, and even some cheap oud oils, to acclimatise myself.

Wonderwood opens with a burst of pepper, some subtle bergamot, a little incense, and some nutmeg. It dries down into a very rounded and smooth woody heart with the pepper still handing around. The smooth texture seems to come from the synthetic sandalwood notes, as well as the smoothing effect I notice synthetic oud oil often has on many scents, and it reminds me a little of Montale's Dark Aoud.

Although often described as a sandalwood scent, it's the pepper and the oud that really stick out to my nose, while the sandalwood blends with other woods (a touch of cedar, some vetiver, and the bitterness of guiac wood) to give it body.

A nice, smooth, comforting scent that I am still getting my head around.

20th September, 2016
Holiday scents #7 - Comme de Garcons "Wonderwood"

The note pyramid reads like an ode to wood: timber all the way down: wood without end through all stages, timber seasoned with pepper. The opening, though, is all vetiver. To my nose, this is not the vetiver of Encre Noire, i.e., wet, natural, and as gothic as a Victorian's nightmare; nor yet of Guerlain's vetiver, which is all grassy manicured lawns. This is vetiver in its pencil-shavings instantiation, dry and lacking in dimension, or any support from the other woods listed.

So you have to give CdGW some time before its best features emerge. Eventually they do: the remaining woods make an appearance and round out the whole picture, giving the lasting impression of real living wood rather than chips or offcuts. By the end, a touch of hardly detectable sweetness and fullness appears. The vetiver stays throughout, but in the drydown is accommpanied by the other notes as a supporting cast, all working to add depth and a dignified vibrancy to the main component. It's a little like the "Vetiver Concerto".

In short, I like CdGW a lot for its development and successful take on just-wood, highly recommend a try, and put both thumbs up here. I suspect it would work better in more temperate climes than the 30C+ heat I am currently in, and you might want to apply it at least two hours before doing anything important, but these are the only caveats.
09th August, 2016 (last edited: 30th August, 2016)
This smells good and it is extremely easy to wear. When I say it I mean it. It's one of those fragrances that are just friendly and simple. Nothing weird about it. At a first try, nothing shocking, it's not one of those perfumes that you need to get used to with time. You just love it. Nice and easy.

It has a downside. No projection. It disappears almost after 30 minutes. I used an entire bottle and I think that I only got a compliment once, when I was talking to someone and I had this person really close.

Conclusion: this is not a perfume to mark an impression, this is a perfume you use for just the personal and individual pleasure of spraying it on yourself. So nice. I can absolutely recommend it.
01st February, 2016
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Cannot smell it myself after 10 mins but my wife likes it.
31st December, 2015
Wonderwood opens with bergamot and a blast of spicy blended woods, bolstered by a soft, creamy cashmeran and sandalwood middle and base. The vetiver is quite pronounced and reminds me of the way vetiver is used in Sycomore, though I dare say I like this more synthetic fragrance better because it somehow seems fuller and cozier to my nose—more filled-out. The cushiony base reins in the cedarwood, cypress, and vetiver, which would otherwise be too sharp for my taste.

Longevity and sillage are better than average, and this scent reminds me a lot of fall. This is a good projector, too. If you like lots of wood with a smooth base, and don't mind the less-than-natural take on the ingredients listed, this one is for you.
24th November, 2015 (last edited: 06th January, 2016)
This one is so comfortable it’s the tracksuit bottom of woody fragrances; therein its main virtue (so supple, easy and everyday) and its main drawback (too easy and everyday).
Wonderwood is a peppery cedar with a high clear frankincense that wears light and fresh despite the evident spicing. Many CdG perfumes take an approach with natural notes that is akin to airbrushing – the note is recognizable but it is lifted and smoothed and buffed to the point that somehow takes it out of nature.
I have a soft spot for woody perfumes, but this one left me wanting due to its uberpolished execution; which perhaps also explains the reviews that go, ‘I don’t normally like woody perfumes, but this one did it for me’. The whole is brought together with finesse, it just fails to excite me. A shame as the name is so evocative and enticing.
Oud is mentioned in the notes list but is so apologetic it seems hardly worth mentioning.
15th January, 2015
Was not fussed with this pretty generic wood scent. Decent longevity and sillage but playing it safe. Very deep and rich scent but not as beguiling and complex as CdG 2 MAN.
02nd June, 2014
This is a wonderful fragrance.
The opening of this fragrance is a smoky and woody smell mixed with vetiver note.
It's a very natural and beautiful combo.
This opening remind me of "Lalique Encre Noir" in many ways.
While "Ecre Noir" is a very quality fragrance, this one is even better! the quality is very good.
In the dry down the smoky aroma settled down and now you can smell a very light and natural woody scent with slightly sweetness and smokiness in the background. some spicy notes trying to show their faces but they are completely in the background.
The woodsy note is mostly sandalwood.
The cedar and oud notes are much weaker and you can barely smell them.
Longevity is OK but projection isn't that great!
A great natural and quality fragrance.
There is nothing so unique and special about it but because of great quality and also woods which are my favorite note in fragrances, it's a thumbs up for me.
27th February, 2014
I have seen the rave reviews about this one and was fortunate enough to try it recently. This is a fragrance that should not be judged by its opening but left to dry down completely and be tried out from head to toe.
The opening is quite strange. I can't pinpoint every note there, but I definitely get the pepper and some 'saw dust' note that reminds me of another well known scent. I didn't like the opening very much as something was a bit harsh for me. But I definitely did a double take once this started to dry down!! Wooded harmony with soft, gentle sandalwood and no doubt vetiver and perhaps oakmoss. A true indication of what a 'fragrance pyramid' is, I sincerely recommend this.
Definitely a masculine scent, but good enough for the office or a night out.
09th January, 2014
Wonderwood shares some strong similarities with Ikon by Zirh, Fever by Celine, Gucci Pour Homme, and Dirty English, all of which I own already so it seems redundant to have but it's just superbly blended and these scents just plain work on my arid skin. The comparisons to Encre Noire are true as well, but it doesn't sting my nose in the initial stage the way Noire does. The price tag is a bit much compared to the aforementioned, but if cedar, smoke, and spice is your thing, either Wonderwood or Gucci will certainly scratch your itch.
25th December, 2013
Is cedar the Wonderwood?

Excellent pepper note dominates the opening accord… and already there’s a smoky, incensey, wood background to the opening pepper and somewhat recessive bergamot. Dominant among the wood is cedar, but there are hints of oudh and sandalwood in the recesses. I would have preferred a stronger oudh and sandalwood and not so much cedar, but I guess cedar is cheaper. The pyramid lists caraway and vetiver, but they escape me… apparently they are overwhelmed by the potent cedarwood, as am I. After the opening, Wonderwood continues as a deep, rich, resinous no-holds-barred wood scent, accented with spices and incense, that has good projection and longevity. Nice, but much safer than CdG usually plays their cards.

As a sucker for this kind of wood scent, I approve of its strongly resinous notes, and I do enjoy "cedar" but it seems to be a primary and inevitable element in oh-so-many wood fragrances that have come out in recent years… Enough, already with the cedar – it simply doesn’t have to be the dominant wood in every wood fragrance costing less than $200. So what am I saying? I guess I’m saying that, of course I enjoy Wonderwood; but there are several of designer and niche scents that are based on about the same concept and are as good as or better.

Pros: Deep, resinous, wood scent, dominated by cedar (of course).
Cons: Wish the guaiac and sandalwood would be better represented."

24th September, 2013
Nice woody fragrance

I like this one. It does remind me a bit of Tam Dao meets Encre Noire (not my description, borrowed from a post). It starts off quickly with a citrus note that fades quickly into a wood that seems like sandalwood plus; clearly more than one wood note here. A nice scent, nothing awe inspiring, but very solid.

24th September, 2013
Wonderful Woody Fragrance.

Intense woods with a fresh oud as the backdrop with pepper and cypress coming into play to support the woods. Along the way you have a host of other notes making a string of cameo appearance's.

This is a very good woody masculine scent that would make a worthy purchase. I like it.

05th August, 2013
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vawallpa Show all reviews
United Kingdom
This scent really does live up to it's name. An extremely woodsy peppery scent burst from the onset that dies down to a nice vetiver with even more woods. I can see why some people would dislike this scent as it really is woods that dominate the fragrance. Sillage and longevity are pretty good but not amazing considering it's an edp. Definitely more masculine than feminine.
22nd April, 2013
As a few people have said, underwhelming and non-memorable.
No doubting the cleverness thats gone into the production, but I wish that my wife had asked me before wrapping it for Christmas! Furthermore,try as I may, I cant detect any vetiver.
11th April, 2013
Peppery cedar and sandalwood. I like the "greenness" of the wood, it isn't dry sawdust but a green just cut smell. The pepper brings it together, a step above say Penhaligon's Opus 1870 which is very linear cedar. The problem for me comes in the dry-down, the vetiver becomes prominent, and overwhelming. If you like vetiver, this may not be a problem, but I don't like the smell of strong vetiver, so it is offensive.
16th February, 2013
This is one of my favorites! The perfect wood fragrance anyone can wear, man or woman! The perfect amount of Oud!
07th January, 2013
For me Wonderwood is a disappointment since i was expecting something great from CDG. Smells like an average woody/cedar scent. Nothing actually unique. Anyway, i cant say it's bad. No, it's good, but average, with a very simple structure despite the notes. Sillage, projection and lasting power are medium-high.
05th December, 2012 (last edited: 26th February, 2013)
Someone else in their review mentions Encre Noir - agreed, it's there, though if that's the aspect that you like in this, then also try Sycomore (Chanel) and turn up the decadance control to 11 for a moment.
Wonderwood sits somewhere between Encre Noir's dryness and Sycomore's richness. It (probably) isn't half as good as either of them (both EN and Sycomore are exceptional vetivers).
Wonderwood is certainly a pleasant enough fragrance.
26th August, 2012
If you like woods then you will like Wonderwood. There is not much else to it. It has nice basenotes and I do find myself enjoying it, but it is just nice. There is no WOW to this scent. It is wood for those who like wood. It is a Niche within the Niche. I give this a neutral just because it is very limited, but if you like woods I give it a hearty thumbs up.
08th July, 2012
Nice thing!!!
It´s all about LIGHT WOOD and PEPPER!!! I don´t get anything else...Oud, Incense??? I don´t think so!

Not bad but CDG is capable to do something much better!!!
25th June, 2012
Very underwhelming...there's much better stuff out there and I found this to be a real let down.Could be my skin doesn't like some CDG scents as it vanished after 5 mins. Sample first, of course! Having said that I maybe should revisit it and give it another chance.
15th June, 2012
First time i'd liked this fragrance, but some time later i found it to be synthetic fragrance with some bad note maybe it was black pepper that blown me away from total love of this scent. Not worth the money.
24th May, 2012
Meh, I'm underwhelmed. I expect great things (or at least amazingly quirky) things from CdG. This is a fairly safe, somewhat bland and mild woody scent.
It starts with a peppery note, and that's pretty well done. Some woody tones emerge, but they are a blond sort of wood; light rather than deep, young wood rather than old stock. At times there is a grassy note (vetiver), at times a bright metallic note (some synthetics), and at times a kind of toasted-nut note.
I didn't get any oud or incense... if they are there they are quite muted.
On my skin, this is really a non-performer, and certainly nothing special or distinctive. It isn't unpleasant, just neutral.
Now, if you want to see CdG do something amazing in the wood line, try Hinoki! Wow.
20th April, 2012
drseid Show all reviews
United States
I love Wonderwood. At first, I immediately noticed a strong resemblance to the excellent Encre Noire with its smokey vetiver and cedarwood accords. I thought "Very nice, but superfluous." Then Wonderwood's drydown came along and that is where it sets itself apart from Encre Noire and others... It is just sublime, smelling of an almost lemon-like note (bergamot?) mixed with sandalwood and a hint of pepper and oud. It is hard to describe what it smells like beyond the notes, but it is just incredible and makes Wonderwood much more versatile than Encre Noire, IMO. Definitely FBW at its 4 stars out of 5 rating, but if you already own Encre Noire you may have to decide if both need to be in your collection. In my opinion, the answer is "yes."
02nd February, 2012 (last edited: 21st September, 2015)
Damn. Love this incensy woody fragrance! If you really love your dry, woody fragrances with an incense vibe you should like this. Don't really get that much Oud if I'm honest but it's there alright. Big fan of woody fragrances so I can't knock this.
18th December, 2011
Wonderwood by Comme des Garcons - Welcome to the wide world of woods! The interesting opening is a dank, forest tree scent, supplied by the melange of warm sandalwood, hints of zesty bergamot and anise-like, caraway seeds, earthy vetiver and creamy guaic wood. This impressive concoction is reminescent of a felled tree in a rain forest, with the attendant damp and green environs. Transitioning to the waiting middle, spicy pepper, ghosts of apple, plum and floral fruitiness from the cristalin, musky powder from the cashmeran, and savory incense enhance the woody brew. The awesome drydown with its rich cedar and enchanting agarwood tug at this lively heart, and is augmented by a charming patchouli, faintly bathing the cedar and oud in an air of mustiness, and a refreshing, dry cypress, with its hint of spiciness, exalting the pleasing, woody base. This high quality and exceptional composition has good projection, after some 4 hours becoming a skin scent, and excellent longevity.
02nd December, 2011
If you like a woodsy fragrance to smell of the actual woods, deep, damp, smoky, fertile, mossy...than this is not for you. Wonderwood is a nice peppery mix of cedar and tropical hardwoods. It is like a lumberyard with planks of sawn fine woods for furniture or instrument making, No earthiness here. It is also rather sweet. This would all be well and good except that there is what I take to be musk in this. Way too much musk. For me, it feminizes and to some degree cheapens the scent, and thus, the neutral rating.
20th August, 2011
boosh Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Beginning to end is lovely, rich and dark mix of woods with a hint of oud and incense. Similar to what I remember Montale's Dark Aoud to be like. Quite mysterious in presence with regard to sillage and the almost "foody" gourmand character which is both delicious and alluring.

To me it could be a cross between Dark Aoud and Christian Lacroix's Tumulte. Dark Aoud being my favourite of the three with it's less subtle oud usage.

05th August, 2011
The initial citric blast is immediately prickly/fizzy due to nutmeg and because of a detectable note of black pepper that retains its presence throughout the trip. This kind of opening, probably the best part of the work, is a promise of olfactory art that along the journey will be slightly disappointed. A sort of woody dusty cloud starts to envelop the wearer at once and it is represented basically by incense and pepper that are the dominant elements in the first phase of the development. Several citrus patterns provide a touch of barber shop feel and freshness and the co-work of citrus, reproposed in the base, holds on this feel till the end. In a while anyway you notice that the pungent incensey initial dust keeps on and rises up a clear woody, slightly watery, sort of undeniable woody mild starkness that reminds me a bit the Dsquared2's fragrances. At this point the development of the scent is over in my opinion, just a touch of final smoothness rising along time. The fragrance remains linear in its shadowy woodsy temperament and i'm not able to distinguish the work of aud in the final phase that is mainly mastered by cedarwood, citrus, a touch of black pepper and above all vetiver under my nose. Its combination of woods, citrus, pepper, incense, nutmeg and cedar reminds me a lot 7 de Loewe that is anyway slightly floral and more easily approachable. The influence from aoud is barely present in the mix. The fragrance (in its opening and middle woody phase and before becoming smoother) reminds just a bit the new Dark Aud Montale but with more dusty and citrusy freshness and without the aromatic and " petroleous" dreadful effect provided by a rich dosage of synthetic aoud. Here the oudh is toned down and the woodsy mild feel is more notable and natural. More than good longevity.
18th June, 2011 (last edited: 25th July, 2014)