So the last couple days I've been hitting perfume shops and testing. Without further ado:
Michael Kors for Men: Every time I've smelled this, I've thought, wow! This is woody as hell.. but in a good way. The opening is richer and more complex than Gucci PH, I think, more of a "general wood" than Gucci which is clearly a blast of cedar with a little frankincence to sharpen it up. In my limited experience, this one seems fairly rich for a mostly-wood scent. I finally broke down and bought a mini for testing.. we'll see how it works on me soon.
Davidoff Zino, Paul Sebastian, Chanel Egoiste: The reason I list these all together is because, although they're clearly different from each other, they're also clearly in the same family. Each one is rich, complex, and well-balanced, and while I wouldn't quite call the Egoiste "dark" (it's the lightest and sweetest of the three), none of them are light scents. Barring weird personal chemical interactions, any of them could probably be substituted for the others in a pinch. I want samples of all of them.
PS Onyx: This one smelled pretty generic to me, the same sharp greenish top found in a lot of colognes. But maybe it's a well-done generic.. I can't be sure, but I will give it that credit, for now.
Eau Sauvage: I always see this described as a neroli scent, and it does smell like neroli, but at the same time, it smells nothing like neroli. Neroli is a light, delicate, even ethereal green-orange floral. Neroli is a 98-pound weakling. Eau Sauvage is neroli after spending six months in a gym. Eau Sauvage is the John Wayne of neroli, not violent or overly aggressive, but fully capable of throwing other nerolis around like children. You don't talk back to Eau Sauvage.. you don't have what it takes. I want a sample of this one, too.
Bvlgari PH: Ah, the classic. Tea and white musk. Aaaaand.. that's it, really. I mean, there are other things sort of hiding inside, lending their influence, sometimes in ways that are almost obvious, but the scent's not about those things. It's about tea and white musk. So far, this is the only "light, fresh, office" scent I've tried that I like (and really, it's not all that light and fresh, merely polite). I imagine something like this, mixed with something like Gendarme and a bit of greenery, would smell pretty good.
Bvlgari PH Extreme: A bit more green, a lot more citrus, and it misses the point.
Bvlgari PH Soir: Not like PH at all. Ew. That's all I have. Ew. It's not tea and musk, it's not polite, it's not that great. They shouldn't have made it look and sound so much like the others.. but maybe they realized that only branding would push this juice.
Nice reviews, Xplo!
Michael kors is indeed a nice complex fragrance! Maybe It's a more wearable option for those that like Gucci ph.
Zino, for me, has a too strong floral opening, although its drydown is distinct.
Bvlgari ph is another nice subtle scent, but sometimes the tea note becames too smoky and sharp on my skin!