Armani Black Code (Le Male light)
Yohji Homme (A*Men - tar + rum/licorice)
Dolce and Gabbana By Man
Thread: A stranger in a strange land...
I've been doing a lot of nosing at the perfume shop and I have to say that my tastes have suprised me.
The "good" part is that I've been rescued from the aquatic scents that everyone is wearing, but I find myself someplace I didn't expect to be.
Actually on the subject of the aquatics, I think that they were the first that I really liked, back when l'eaud'issey first rolled out. My initial round of nosing only confirmed this, and I only liked Aqua di Gio, Dolce Gabbana PH, and Issey still, of the various things I sampled. I decided to yield to this, and look at the rest of the marine/aqua family. But I couldn't really find anything other than the Kenzos.
I tried Kenzo PH - I expected to like this. Dark rotten green seaweed. *Yuck. Also L'eau Kenzo - breezier saltier green seaweed. The same smell from further up on the beach.
Several other things made no special impression: Versace Metal Jeans - bland, Vera Wang - nice but nothing special, Azzaro Chrome, Emporio Armania, Armani Mania, etc.
Things I ran away from? Givenchy PH. Burberry Brit.
I also retried some of the things I used to own in my twenties: Obsession, Egoiste, Safari - all were repellant.
One that suprised me was Lalique Equus. I expected to like the regular Lalique and was let down, and tried Equus as a lark, The mangoish top note caught my attention immediately. I still need to try this on my skin.
Clinique Happy is another one that stood out from the crowd for me. Best of the fresh scents that I nosed. I would choose this over Issey, Aqua di Gio, and that lot.
But my three favourites thus far? Two are things I didn't even expect to try.
1. A*Men *This I tried just as a lark, and it won me over immediately. On my skin, simply wonderful. Sweet and silky. It is almost like I am not wearing a fragrance and this is coming out of my skin naturally.
2. Le Male *This one is stronger, with a meatier note in the body, and more complexity. OTOH, the typical sense of being perfumed. Can seem a little strong at times.
3. Lolita Lempicka *This one caught my attention as being a little different, with something interesting about it. I haven't tried it on my skin yet, but I keep coming back to it. Mysteriously appealing.
I almost feel like I could make a trio of Lolita, A*Men, and Clinique Happy and have all of the bases covered. Thus far I had to put the brakes on to keep from impulsively buying A*Men.
Given these results, is there anything else I should be looking at? There was no Creed at my perfume shop (Perfumania Plus). As far as I could tell, none of the artisan perfumers. I'd probably have to make the trek to Neimans to find anything unusual.
Armani Black Code (Le Male light)
Yohji Homme (A*Men - tar + rum/licorice)
Dolce and Gabbana By Man
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.
-- Marcel Proust
"Whereof one cannot speak, one must remain silent thereof." --Wittgenstein
Like me, you seem to have fallen for the Orientals. Definitely check these out:
1. Perry M
2. B Men
3. Armani Night/Black Code
4. Hanae Mori EDP
I think it's the rich and sensual type smell you like, so I'm just going to toss two out there every though I don't know if they count as orientals: Habit Rouge by Guerlain and New York by Parfums de Nicolai. New York is my new 'signature' scent, summer be damned!
I went through a sweet phase and it ultimately subsided and I was sick of all sweet scents. I can now tolerate some sweetness but I just caution you to give it a bit of time before purchasing all of the scents you mention. They are all somewhat sweet and you may move on fairly quickly once you start sampling more things. I love Orientals and I am not saying that these are bad scents but in my experience and from reading here for quite a long while, it seems like many go through sweet phases and at times consider fragrances that are too sweet to be sickening.
That said, do check out Body Korous,Laguna, Hanae Mori HM,Habit Rouge, Givenchy's Pi and the others mentioned above for more of what you currently like but do try the citrus, woody,leathery,chypre, fougere, etc. etc. etc. offerings out there too.
I just want to say that Carlos3, you jsut made one of the best first time poster-posts I've seen. I want to read more like this one from you.
Since you seem to like sweet orientals, how about:
Lalique Le Faune (similar to Chanel Allure)
I like the way you put that! Well said.Originally Posted by Carlos3
Thanks for the kind words everyone. It's always a bit nervous, posing on a new forum,
Originally Posted by evogel
I think I already see what you mean. I tried Givenchy Pi and Lolita Lempicka AM on my skin today, and having just tried Le Male and A*Men yesterday, I find that choosing amongst them is very much an exercise in splitting hairs, and I don't see needing a collection of scents which are too similar. I was a bit swept away yesterday when I discovered these "gourmand" scents, but I'm gaining some perspective.
Givenchy Pi - this brings a buttery feel to this family of scents, reminding me of nothing so much as freshly cut, warm pound cake. A very cohesive scent too - you really have to put your nose against the point of application to decontruct it and see the underlying floral compostion. Somehow it all comes together to make cake.
Lolita Lempicka aM - Mixed feelings. I appreciate its softer, a bit less sweet character, but honestly I don't care for the licorice top note. I wasn't getting this on the card but it jumps straight out at you when on the skin. Yes, that mostly goes away after awhile, but I don't like the idea of not enjoying the whole scent as it unfolds.
So I let myself buy that bottle of A*Men that's been waiting for me. I'll live with this for a week or two before considering anything else. The girl at the perfume shop said, "Just one? But you smelled like a hundred things!"
I picked up the classification "gourmand" this morning while searching the basenotes Yahoo archive. Is this a new family of fragrances (like the aquatics)? What is its origin?
Gourmand = "edible notes," e.g. chocolate, coffee, etc. A relatively recent development, dating back to the introduction of A*Men, I believe.
If you like Le Male, try the new Perry Ellis 360 White. It's a cheaper (and I think better) version of Le Male.
Top 3: London Gentleman, Blackbeard's Delight, and Sex Panther. (It works 60% of the time, every time.)
Since you seem to enjoy gourmands and orientals I'll throw in my 2 cents.
Molinard's Patchouli(softest nicest sweet patchouli I've smelled)
YSL M7(masterpiece of sweet woods)
YSL Opium(spicier oriental has a nice menthal note in it to me)
L'Artisan Patchouli Patch(more expensive higher quality Molinard)
Escada Casual Friday(coffee and licorice with sweet wood, gets me more compliments than any other)
Body Kouros(an edible candle one of my faves)
Carsan(wonderful don't know how to describe though)
Thus far, I've only found two gourmand orientals that work well on my skin: Lolita Lempicka aM and Hanae Mori HM. I have samples of Mechant Loup (hazelnut) and DZING! (tonka/vanilla) that wear very well, but I wouldn't say these go very "edible" on my skin. They've got too prominent woody-notes for that!
I tried Chanel Allure. It was okay, and fit well enough with this crowd. Once the top notes wore down it took on a very typical Chanel smell to me, before moving on again. Made me think of No. 5 for a while. I haven't run across any of the other suggested scents yet. I'm curious about Cristobal and M7.
Living with A*Men, I absolutely love it, though wearing it sometimes it feels a little light on me. I'm still experimenting with different points of application. Honestly, I'd almost lke to bathe in it.
From this point I'm thinking that I would want something a bit more floral, maybe a little stronger (spicier?), with more evolution over time.
Separately, I wonder if my ideal edt would be akin to the scent of the strong oriental pipe tobaccos that I used to love - like Balkan Sasienie and and Dunhill 965, which were heavy with smoked Latakia. I wonder, is there anything in the sweet oriental family which also boasts smoky and tobacco notes?
Tommy Bahama and Aramis Havana might give you that smoky Tobacco notes you crave,
And if you still might want to try something sweet yet fresh, Boss in Motion has a good punch of citrus, cinnamon, and bright woods to offset its sweet musky bottom notes.
Happy Hunting Carlos!
I'm still drowning in a lot of aquatic stuff and have gone crazy sniffing out the latest trend of 'Ice' scents, I was lucky to find a bottle of Aramis Ice on eBay. Eyed the fragrance for a while, only to find out it was a limited edition fragrance for the summer last year and *POOF* gone! But lately I have resolved to working at my 'heavier' fragrance wardrobe. Tommy Bahama is on my hit list and SHHHH! don't tell anyone, but I think I'll pick up an aquatic scent anyway, 212 on Ice to be exact.... [smiley=wink.gif]
Very Valentino!Originally Posted by Carlos3
Unfortunately it doesn't have good longevity on me so I swapped it.
Whenever I wear Mechant Loup, the kids in my class tell me I smell like flavored coffee. *As for being edible, unless you're a dung beetle who is a stowaway in a Barnum and Bailey truck, there's no way that anyone would accuse Dzing! of being a tasty treat. *Originally Posted by duxoop772
Believe it or not Paul....on my skin DZING! is VERY doggone tonka bean...almost to the point of......dare I say...vanilla! No foolin'!! There's definitely wood in there and just a smidge...a teeny tiny smattering....of leather. No musk, nothing funky! My skin seems to sustain all the lighter notes. Heck, I just got Kingdom and comparing the way DZING wears next to it makes the quirky L'Artisan frag seem like herbal tea!! [smiley=shocked.gif]
Then again....after a few hours, Kingdom turns into musk and myrrh topped off with citrus and vanilla with a scoop of taco meat on the side!! [smiley=grin.gif] [smiley=grin.gif] [smiley=grin.gif]
Nosed a few more things today:
Armani Black Code. Nothing remarkable. Very light compared to all of the other orientals. I can see the "light Le Male" description.
YSL Opium - This caught me at first, but there is this sweet middle note in it, something that I think that Versace Dreamer also has, which is mouth watering (literally) then nauseating. I love the floral part, but that particular sweet note is unpleasant for me.
YSL M7 - I get very little from this once the light floral top note evaporates. Just the scent of damp wood. I get a lot more from this on a card than on my skin. I very much like the card scent.
Kouros - just totally repellant.
Guerlain Vetivier - reminds me of M7 - a wood note topped by florals. If stronger. But not to my taste.
I'm beginning to get the feeling that I don't have a good nose for woods, and if I am liking a scent based on wood notes, then it is probably despite that.
Chanel Allure, YSL Opium PH
Gucco Envy - Seem okays. More a spicy/floral oriental to me. I get very little sweetness. Not really appealing. It has that distinct, harsh perfume note which I dislike.
Body Kouros - Kind of similar to Envy, though dominantly floral. I'd say, even less sweet.
Marc Jacobs - The fig note was very peculiar. I love figs, but I wonder at actually smelling like figs. It does seem to sink into the background the way the anise does in Lolita Lempicka, though it lacks Lolita's mysterious charm.
B*Men - with A*Men as my only EDT right now I was predisposed to like this, and was disappointed. It reminds me of Guerlain's Vetivier. Wood overlaid with flowers. Again, I don't get much from it scent wise. I don't think I care for these heavily wood centered scents. They give me more of a feeling of warmth than a detectable odour. Like the subwoofer of an audio system mainly gives you bass that you feel rather than hear.
Joop! - I was surprised at how nice this was. Spicy, floral, some sweetness, but more tangy than sweet. I'd still prefer something like Le Male, but this is probably as close to a fresh oriental as I could get. I feel it lacks something, a sense of body - Pi would be an example of something that I found to be full-bodied.
Hmm. Not sure what is next to try.
I suggest Laguna and Cristobal for the next trials.
I suggest Dolce & Gabanna PH.
"Wait...is David Bowie really God?" - Penelope Garcia
I have tried Dolce & Gabbana PH, and I do like it. Of the things I've tried so far, my likes would list as:
2. Le Male
5. Dolce&Gabbana PH
6. Lolita Lempicka
I was pretty close to buying Dolce & Gabbana PH, until I tested the gourmand orientals.
Oh my GOD!!! Excellent Advice!!!Originally Posted by francois
Some points to remember on a couple of these, Carlos. Be careful testing LeMale. It's like Krazy Glue..."just a dab'll do-ya!" Too many people baste themselves in this one and just ruin it. I, unfortunately, don't like this one on me but a kid at work wears it well with only two spritzes! Pi is just a cloying mess whenever it hits my nostrils. A buddy of mine wears it and he often winds up smelling like a freshly-baked batch of cupcakes!! As I mentioned before, I own and wear Lolita Lempicka aM, original not fresh version. Because I have...uh..."weird skin," LLaM stays very licorice/vanilla. But what the heck! I like it and it doesn't get ugly, so that's all that matters. Dolce & Gabbana seems very spicy-tobacco with a sorta "cherry-pie-filling" vibe happening. But in a very likable way!!
Wow, all suffocating sugar bombs!!. Hey Carlos hope your family has gas masks lying around [smiley=grin.gif]Originally Posted by Carlos3
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.
-- Marcel Proust
Wow, all suffocating sugar bombs!!. Hey Carlos hope your family has gas masks lying around [smiley=grin.gif][/quote]Originally Posted by sentient
It's all in the application. The right method transforms suffocating to SEXY sugar BOMBS!!!!! [smiley=wink.gif]
Heh. I'm single and my roomate has sinus issues. He didn't even notice that I had bought an EDT, and A*Men at that.
I tried a couple more today, of course:
Rochas Man - this is one more for the likes list. Somewhere between Pi and A*Men in signature, but less sweet. Softer, spicier, more refined if less heady than A*Men, and less body than either. A very nice scent though. I seem to recall cinnamon, maybe? I think it might be a better choice for work. I notice one advantage it had over A*Men is that it doesn't get yucky if I have to do something *very physical and get hot and sweaty, or if I am out in the summer heat. Normally I am at a desk, a/c'ed - but not always.
Dolce & Gabbana By Man - only okay. Another light interpretation of floral and sweet. I don't care for the paricular notes in this one. I think PH is better by a mile.
Versace Blue Jeans - same as above.
Perry Ellis 360 White - Le Male without the balls.
The SA foisted her whole favourites list of probably a dozen frags on me, but I let her since my own list of things left to try was pretty short. Incanto was okay until I tried it on my skin, Rive Gauche no thanks, Bijan Wicked, Cerruti 1881, and a host of other minor frags that I hadn' heard of - I was willing to be surprised by something unexpected. No luck.
I havent been able to find Cristobal, Laguna, or Jaipur PH, but I'll get to them eventually. I picked up a small bottle of Clinique Happy, so now I have at least one option, until I can afford more. I'm happy with my start so far. Plenty of things still left to check out. I haven't even touched on niche fragrances yet.
I keep trying Le Male and almost buying and planning to buy it, and today I tried it on skin again today and passed. Instead I bought Rochas Man.
I guess chocolate is my ultimate basenote, now with A*Men with its creamy milk chocolate, and Rochas Man with its dark powdery cocoa, forming my wardrobe. I did buy Clinique Happy, but now I have a bt of buyers remorse. It is a very well composed fragrance and it was a logical purchase to add a different option, but in retrospect I see that it doesn't mean that I wan't to smell like it. Oh well.
I also checked Animale Animale today, and I liked the top-notes - a more primitive A*Men it seemed to me - but the dry down left it a very typically 80's-ish nose-stinging perfumey thing. I don't like the overly prominent wood note.
I also checked Angel proper. I've heard many say that it is superior to A*Men. Strangely, I found it quite repellant, dominated by a very pungent berry note. Yuck.
BTW, is Rochas considered a niche fragrance?
Yup! You've definitely caught the sweet bug for the time being. With that said, you MUST try Roma Uomo from Laura Biagiotti. I think you'll really like this, even if I reserve it for cooler fall/winter weather. Also, how about Rocabar from Hermes? Finally, I agree with your excellent initial post and follow-ups!Originally Posted by Carlos3
Welcome. Sounds like you're infatuated with gourmands at this point. When I first got into frags I was heavy into gourmands, but transitioned out; you might have the same experience.
Rochas Man is good, but you'll have to be judicious in wearing it, it is probably the most powerful gourmand I wore. The lavender note is what seems to make this one different from all the other gourmands I've tried.
You might want to avoid (though you should at least give it a try) Casual Friday. This is a coffee-type gourmand with some definite synthetic notes, and a long woody drydown. It is the woody notes which make me caution you against this.
May I suggest:
Body Kouros - An oriental scent really, but smells a lot like a gourmand scent. Fairly linear - it doesn't change much during the day. My favoite scent for at least a year. My fiancee loves it. You'll probably love this if you enjoy Lolita Lempkita (or however it is spelled). Dries down powdery.
Miracle Homme - I consider this the "gourmand for the non-gourmand" wearer. Subtle coffee notes, and a well rounded frag. It is almost an aquatic frag, but doesn't seem to step into aquatic territory. You would not confuse this with Acqua di Gio. Really nice, and a good way to transition into various types of scents.
Habit Rouge - One of the best oriental frags out there. Overall a subtle scent, with an undercurrent of vanilla and leather. The EDP formulation has agarwood, which you may have noticed in M7, but the EDC and EDT do not have it.
Again, welcome aboard, and make sure to put a padlock on your credit cards because they may take a beating over the next couple months if you really get into frags.
MisterK / Vicomte de K / K
Ephemeral Top 5: YSL PH HC, Worth PH, Equipage, Monsieur Rochas HC, Acqua di Gio
Carlos, I think Habit Rouge will be right up your strasse. Starts with a burst of citrus and mellows down to vanilla with hints of leather, patchouli and musk.
One that is a bit hard to come by is Musc Ravageur by Frederic Malle. A wonderful potent concoction. Decidedly oriental with tonka notes and some spices, it lasts and lasts.
Welcome and heed well the good advise of Eric and others about the sweet stuff. I am another who passed on from the sweet oriental/edibles after a period of believing I needed a complete set of everything in the catagory. I've sold around ten and still have half dozen that I almost never wear.
If they appeal to you by all means get them. Consider decants. Be selective.
I'll definitely hold off buying anything else for a while. I want to see how these two actually wear in everyday use. To what degree do they fit, to what degree not. Then from there, what else would I like.
I wore Rochas Man for the first time today. I had thought from my trial that this might be a better work wear scent than A*Men, but actually I find its dark velvety smoothness suggests relaxed evening wear to me, while the vibrancy of A*Men fits the daytime. OTOH, Rochas Man hold up really well in the summer heat. If anything it seems to open up more when it gets a little warm. A*Men, can get a bit yucky in the the heat unless you are really restrained wih the application.
If I can be permitted a moment of romanticism, I've kind of got this platonic idea of a frangrance in my head. Something rich and floral, and spicy, full-bodied. I see something exotic and oriental. Freshly ground spices, honey, smoke, incense.
Think the Count of Monte Cristo in his opulent excess, or the disheveled Han Solo in the Mos Eisley cantina.
I'd read about those special deals at marshalls and I found Guerlain's Heritage and Vetiver there. No sealed boxes alas, but I tried both on the skin. My impression of vetiver only worsened. Powerful, pungent, and very unpleasant. I had to wash my hand three times to get it off and it still isn't quite gone.
Heritage was a very pleasant suprise. I like this very much. If there had been a sealed package on the display I would have gone back to pick one up. I guess I'm easily taken with lavender, bergamot, patchouli, and tonka. I've read many comments of this being a very strong scent, but it seems very soft to me, very modest if enduring.