Code of Conduct
Results 1 to 38 of 38

Thread: House Haters

  1. #1
    nearfantastica
    Guest

    Default House Haters

    As fans of fragrance, we all have our favorites. From the timeless powdery kiss of a Guerlain, to the magical potions concocted by L'artisan parfumeur, we all have opinions on Niche and Designer houses, be they negative or positive.

    That being said, how "unbiased" are we when trying out a new fragrance. If one despises the Kenneth Cole "brand" for whatever reason, how fair are we to a newly launched KC fragrance when trying it. Upon sniffing, is our subconsious already flooding our brains with previous experiences with the house in question? Can we really sample and appreciate fragrances.. from a clean slate? If the same fragrance is released by a highly regarded Niche house.. do we bend and flex our brows to a greater extent to try and appreciate a fragrance that might have otherwise been tossed aside because of the name branded on the front of the bottle?

    I don't want to suggest that this is isolated to fragrance.... we see this kind of phenomenon in regards to other aspects of fashion and music. For example, a new Beta Band release vs. a new Justin Timberlake release will be greeted with very different reactions from a variety of different music listeners.

    I do appreciate the multitude of great reviews that are provided. Some people have a really good grip on describing scents and pinpointing what it is that makes a fragrance worth a purchase.. and what makes a fragrance. I however; can not stress enough... the importance of trying a scent out, for yourself instead of believing the hype. Sometimes the fables or stories surrounding fragrances supercede the actual combo of ingredients. A good majority of people here are creative by nature.. but at the same time, I find that it is difficult to come upon unbiased views of fragrances. For example, if a newbie were to join this site... and read about the much discussed "Kouros", upon sampling it.. they would already have expectations of the fragrance... they might be expecting the fragrance to claw out their eyes, beat them into submission. How many people have honestly had the opportunity to sample a scent like the "king" without having images of the many threads here pop into mind when sniffing them?

    I think that there's a lot of fragrance elitism that occurs on the boards as well. People who turn up their nose at a particular house or won't even consider a fragrance because a certain designer has produced it. I'm not saying that people don't have the "right" to dislike fragrance houses... and there ARE many viable reasons for judgment of certain ones. I just think that discounting a fragrance before it's been sampled simply because it's from an unpopular house is silly and arrogant.

    I am at work right now, and its very slow.. thus I've had time to think about this and put it into words. This is in no way intended as a "dig" towards anyone, but it is a call to basenoters to leave their fragrance baggage at the door when sampling new scents (wow, that was an arrogant statment in its own right! grin). If wearing a Malle to work one day makes you feel like a better person than the shmuck in the next cubicle, all the power to you.... but let's keep in mind that even though smells evoke feelings and memories.. that behind labels, neatly coloured bottles.. fragrances all just ingredients and alcohol in a container.

    Your thoughts on the subject?

    a.

  2. #2

    Default Re: House Haters

    Good post and agree with what your saying 100%

    I like to think that im pretty open minded regards frags, and a look at my wardrobe will tell you, I dont give a frag 5 stars just because its expensive just the same as I dont slate others if they are cheap (er)
    I am guilty however of expecting more from the higher price bracket end of the market though. If its a bad hugo im like 'oh, its a bad hugo' but if its a bad L'artisan or Malle its like 'what the hell has gone wrong here? It must be my nose!'

    Keep an open mind and try anything once

  3. #3

    Default Re: House Haters

    There are houses whose scents I don't like and thus also have prejudices against because of my earlier experiences with them (to name some names: Dior, Givenchy, Gucci, Kenzo...) but still, I always give their latest product a chance to change my mind about them.

    It just never seems to happen...
    "Wovon man nicht lesen kann, darüber muss man schreiben."

  4. #4

    Default Re: House Haters

    Good post, nearfant.

    I have noticed the same thing on this board with Bond no.9 for some reason. :-)

    Anyway, I believe we humans are all amateur statisticians and as such, bias and prejudice are built into our DNA, as a defense mechanism, almost. Imagine the caveman who has to learn anew that a particular plant is poisonous, each time he sees it? After a while, plants that look the first start to engender the same feelings in our caveman.

    It seems we take that to everything we're involved in, including, alas perfume. I believe I try to approach every fragrance delivery from a particular house with a pair of fresh nostrils, but I know I'm not completely unbiased. The important thing is to try, like you said.

    Good post!
    De gustibus non est disputandum

  5. #5

    Default Re: House Haters

    I believe in second chances. That has what led me to appreciate Dzing! from L'Artisan, and Chergui from Serge Lutens, two houses whos offerings arent to my liking.

    I tend to keep an open mind about latest releases from any house - you never know when a house might hit on a genuine classy juice. Recently I tried a sample of Polo Double Black, and was surprised to find it quite appealing.

    p.s. Werent you leaving Basenotes? Good to have you back!
    -

  6. #6

    Default Re: House Haters

    In principle you have a point, but I'm going to play devil's advocate here in favor of preconceived notions. Don't forget that p.n.s, which are after all forms of categorization we use to structure the world around us, do have a purpose: to filter out information which previous experience has taught us will likely be irrelevant to us, something quite important if there is too much information out there to process. Notice Im talking about informed prejudice here, not questionable traditions (my grandfather always said Creed sucks/rules and I believe him blindly...)

    So of the hundreds of perfumes thrown on the market every year, which am I going to try, how will I set my priorities? Let me tell ya, David Beckham and Paris Hilton don't have much of a chance, a new dior or Creed has.
    Sure, I might miss a really great Beckham fragrance, in fact, if my preconceptions become too encrusted, I might miss the house of Beckham's transformation into a top quality house (well, other BNers would call attention to this, that's why it's so valuable to have a community like this, despite inevitable disagreements).

    Well, you can't have it all. Surely an ultimate judgement of the individual fragrance must be based on trying it. And I'm fully aware what damage prejudice can do when applied to people/groups (however, cognitively, it's unfortunately inevitable). But hey, it's only perfume here and these days one can make sometimes make pretty adequate predictions about what the new XYZ is going to be like. So, I'm not going to listen to any new Britney Spears Album but will check out a new Robert Pollard release, will not try any new corn syrup plus ârtificial flavoring candy bar but will test a new organic cereal, will not order samples of any new Coty fragrance, but will be interested in a new Lutens (though it may disappoint me). And if, say, I've hated every single Guerlain out there (unlikely, I know) why should a new one be a priority?
    My Wardrobe
    II est de forts parfums pour qui toute matière/Est poreuse. On dirait qu'ils pénètrent le verre.

  7. #7
    nearfantastica
    Guest

    Default Re: House Haters

    Just to clarify... the point I was making in my previous post was not that "individuals should find a way to try every fragrance under the sun".. it was simply that one should not bash an individual fragrance due to its affiliation to a specific house/designer without having sampled it. Second, when people do manage to sample a frangrance, trying to appreciate it on its own merit should be the "priority".

    that's it..that's all.

    a.

  8. #8
    Overcome By Fumes
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    3,251

    Default Re: House Haters

    This is one of the best thread-points I have read in some time, and is very clearly stated. It is actually hard to add much. Although I do wear some cheapo mainstream as well as hotshit niche material; I do fall prey to the eagerness to try the high end, and not so much the lower end. Nonetheless, a good hook may lead me to try something which seems not so dramatic and be pleasantly surprised sometimes (e.g. Double Black, which I did not expect to like at all). I am certain that since the time I was totally scent-naif that the names of the houses has influenced my likes and dislikes. I would actually love to have the chance to have a blind sniffing party with some fellow 'noters sometime and see how some variety of fragrances fare when separated from identifying information. AZSmells ran a very interesting experiment here in this vein a couple years back, and most of us who tried to identify some unlabelled numbered vials were quite far from the mark in identifying much about them other than a few notes. Perhaps we should try this again, just for fun.

  9. #9

    Thumbs up Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by docluv45
    I am certain that since the time I was totally scent-naif that the names of the houses has influenced my likes and dislikes. I would actually love to have the chance to have a blind sniffing party with some fellow 'noters sometime and see how some variety of fragrances fare when separated from identifying information.
    Doc, what an absolutely great idea. We should send a pool of fragrances with one "moderator", perhaps 1ml samples labelled only with a number which only the moderator knows, then send those out to each participant and have those post back to a thread with their best guesses at what the perfume(s) they sampled was and whether they liked it, what notes they smelled, etc.

    Was this something like what AZSmells did?
    De gustibus non est disputandum

  10. #10

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by docluv45
    Nonetheless, a good hook may lead me to try something which seems not so dramatic and be pleasantly surprised sometimes (e.g. Double Black, which I did not expect to like at all).
    Ah, so I am not the only one to be pleasantly surprised by Polo Double Black !
    -

  11. #11

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by nearfantastica
    Just to clarify... the point I was making in my previous post was not that "individuals should find a way to try every fragrance under the sun".. it was simply that one should not bash an individual fragrance due to its affiliation to a specific house/designer without having sampled it. Second, when people do manage to sample a frangrance, trying to appreciate it on its own merit should be the "priority".

    that's it..that's all.

    a.
    On that I am totally d'accord with you
    My Wardrobe
    II est de forts parfums pour qui toute matière/Est poreuse. On dirait qu'ils pénètrent le verre.

  12. #12

    Default Re: House Haters

    does anyone ever find that they will find a fragrance that is generally disliked here, like it, and then second-guess themselves? "Oh, this one is actually pretty good... but I guess it cant be THAT good"
    Or "wow, this Artisan frag isnt that great... but it got such great reviews and people commented on the mastery of its construction... so mabye it actually is?"

  13. #13

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by nearfantastica
    I think that there's a lot of fragrance elitism that occurs on the boards as well. People who turn up their nose at a particular house or won't even consider a fragrance because a certain designer has produced it. I'm not saying that people don't have the "right" to dislike fragrance houses... and there ARE many viable reasons for judgment of certain ones. I just think that discounting a fragrance before it's been sampled simply because it's from an unpopular house is silly and arrogant.

    a.
    I'm confused. Are you basing your premise on the idea that I have some sort of obligation to be fair and impartial with how I choose to spend my money and, more importantly, time and skin area? If I have tried and hated one hundred and twenty-three versions of Curve, I am still somehow obligated to spend my time searching out version one hundred and twenty-four, and if I don't, I am "silly and arrogant"? I will readily accept the idea that in dealing with human beings, I should always try to give them other chances, but where and when have I somehow incurred this obligation in dealing with the Perry Ellis product line? If I miss, because of my arrogance, the absolute best fragrance in the world because I ignore Candy Blu, that's my problem and no one else's business. I really do have a rather difficult time with the idea that I would be labeled "silly and arrogant" for not running out to test the lastest Summer version of Eternity.

  14. #14
    nearfantastica
    Guest

    Default Re: House Haters

    Foet:

    If you read my post, you'd also see that I specifically said that I don't think there is anything wrong with disliking a fragrance house based on passed experience. You missed the point completely.

    For the "third" time... my issue is as follows:

    Billy Joe hates Hugo as a house.

    Hugo releases a new fragranced called "Emotion Lotion"...

    Billy Joe says to himself... "Oh god, another Hugo fragrance, it must be garbage." (We all do this, and it is quite possible that the fragrance will be lousy, but pre-deciding a fragrance has no worth without having tried it.. is what I am considering silly)

    Even lousy houses have stumbled upon fluke winners... Steering clear of certain houses because of past experience.. makes perfect sense. If I have had four lousy meals at a local restaurant, I will surely not go there a 5th time on the slight possibility that their "Chunky Monkey Space Burger" might be delicious, but at the same time... is it really fair for me to say that it "isn't" tasty if I've never had a bite? That, sir..is my point.

    a.

  15. #15

    Default Re: House Haters

    Near,
    I am totally fair and reasonable, and I try everything. I just happen to already know that all L'Artisan frags are awful, even though I haven't tried any!

    My buddy, I'm with Foetidus on this... your proposition is totally admirable, and eminently fair. But not necessarily practical. We all like to think that we're objective, and we, uh, sort of are, but we all have prejudices, too, and biases based on what I'll loosely call "empirical evidence".

    For instance, if someone has tried 8 frags from House Of Wax, and they all smelled like Kellogg's Death Flakes, do you really think that they'll have an open mind about their next frag, Corpse-a-licious?

    In any case, around here that is often a self-correcting problem. There are many posts where someone will say, I used to think all B*** sucks, but their new one is actually good!

  16. #16

    Exclamation Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by foetidus
    Are you basing your premise on the idea that I have some sort of obligation to be fair and impartial with how I choose to spend my money and, more importantly, time and skin area?
    I suspect no one would propose such restrictions on your private activities. I believe the idea suggested by this thread concerns public comment, not private puchase, application, or appreciation. Now, I would also grant you the right to be unfair or prejudiced in your public comments, but it seems to me stronger biases generally lead to less valuable and productive discourse.

    Quote Originally Posted by foetidus
    If I have tried and hated one hundred and twenty-three versions of Curve, I am still somehow obligated to spend my time searching out version one hundred and twenty-four, and if I don't, I am "silly and arrogant"?
    Again I believe no one would demand that you smell things you don't want to smell; but some might understandably prefer that members refrain from commenting on things they haven't smelled. Also---this is a minor point---I believe the original post concerns houses, not product lines; it might be reasonable to suggest you should not prejudge a new Liz Claiborne fragrance even if you've written off every version of Curve known or yet to be invented.
    Last edited by d4; 27th November 2006 at 09:30 PM.

  17. #17
    Scentronic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Metro Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    2,748

    Default Re: House Haters

    Very insightful arguements on both sides.

    I not only have to like the scent, I have to WANT to like it. This is something that would prevent me from even giving certain things a chance. No way am I going to pay for a scent with Paris Hilton's name on it, regardless of how good it smells.

    On the other hand...

    I like to try everything I can get my hands on just for the sake of experience and comparison. I will want to try the new Paris (or whatever) anyway.
    Lately I've been wearing:
    Windsor, Bois de Santal, Original Santal, Elixir, Douro, Endymion, Reflection, Arcus, Marwah

  18. #18

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by perfectfeet
    Very insightful arguements on both sides.

    I not only have to like the scent, I have to WANT to like it. This is something that would prevent me from even giving certain things a chance. No way am I going to pay for a scent with Paris Hilton's name on it, regardless of how good it smells.

    On the other hand...

    I like to try everything I can get my hands on just for the sake of experience and comparison. I will want to try the new Paris (or whatever) anyway.
    Perfect, you're spot on with this one. For example, I had a knee-jerk reaction against Sean John Retard, errr, Unforgiveable, until I actually tried it. It's actually not bad.

    Heheh... "Emotion Lotion"
    De gustibus non est disputandum

  19. #19

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by nearfantastica
    Foet:

    If you read my post, you'd also see that I specifically said that I don't think there is anything wrong with disliking a fragrance house based on passed experience. You missed the point completely.

    For the "third" time... my issue is as follows:

    Billy Joe hates Hugo as a house.

    Hugo releases a new fragranced called "Emotion Lotion"...

    Billy Joe says to himself... "Oh god, another Hugo fragrance, it must be garbage." (We all do this, and it is quite possible that the fragrance will be lousy, but pre-deciding a fragrance has no worth without having tried it.. is what I am considering silly)

    Even lousy houses have stumbled upon fluke winners... Steering clear of certain houses because of past experience.. makes perfect sense. If I have had four lousy meals at a local restaurant, I will surely not go there a 5th time on the slight possibility that their "Chunky Monkey Space Burger" might be delicious, but at the same time... is it really fair for me to say that it "isn't" tasty if I've never had a bite? That, sir..is my point.

    a.
    Yes, I saw the disclaimer, but I also saw the words that over weighed it: "silly and arrogant." I don't have a huge problem with "silly" but "arrogant" is way out of line. Those are strong words and provide a definite criticism no matter how many disclaimers you put in. As I said, we should try to treat human beings fairly and impartially IMO, but the word " arrogant" is too strong for a person who uses his or her freedom of speech to make a generalization against a product line. I know that, in law, an incorporated business has the rights of a human being, a fact that royally pisses me off, but now you are trying to increase my social obligations to them so as to not hurt their feelings, or what? You've denied me, with your judgements, the right of not only freedom of speech, but you are condemning me (silly and arrogant) for spending or not spending my money and time as I see fit. You could have stated your ideas without using those overstated judgemental labels--you didn't, and the "I'm not saying..." doesn't help because you ARE saying.

    You might have said "Hey, guys, I've found that even the houses that are dissed can put out a good product. For instance,...." But you didn't. You said that if I say, "I'm not even going to try Candie's Bleue," because I know it is going to be crap," then I am arrogant. You pre-labled me for expressing a normal human response to previous circumstances.

    Really, it's not what you actually said that bothered me, it's the premise that I do not have the right to express my uninformed (yes, I said UNinformed)opinion on these boards, this creates a lack-of-comfort level in me. Life and communication are hard enough without having to worry about political correctness when I talk about the Lucky product line.

    Edit: corrected verbs
    Last edited by foetidus; 27th November 2006 at 10:28 PM.

  20. #20
    Scentronic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Metro Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    2,748

    Default Re: House Haters

    Glad you mentioned the Sean Jean, as it is a good example of one I didn't want to like, but couldn't avoid liking. I guess it specifically appeals to me, and it was thrown in my face so often, I couldn't help take notice. After I went through two samples worth, I took a hint that it was a keeper.

    It's a shame too that it automatically gets compared to Millesime Imperial (and is, in fact, very similar), but discarded as a "copy" or a mass-market scent and doesn't get evaluated fairly, IMO.

    Hanae Mori, on the other hand, couldn't PAY ME to wear their fragrance! It is not a terrible scent, but their sales reps are so incredibly pushy and rude that it turns me off to the extent that I refuse to fairly evaluate their product.

    I just try to keep an open mind, even if it is subject to an initial, logical bias or prejudice.
    Lately I've been wearing:
    Windsor, Bois de Santal, Original Santal, Elixir, Douro, Endymion, Reflection, Arcus, Marwah

  21. #21

    Default Re: House Haters

    foetidus, if I may interject for a second and play the peacekeeper. Regardless of what nearfan says, he cannot take away a right (yours, in this case) to reactively reject a house out-of-hand so creating a "lack-of-comfort level" is really not his doing, it's yours or rather, it's your controllable reaction to his opinion. You simply chose to get insulted or feel your rights reduced.

    However, I do take your point; it's a very worthy one. There are definitely two sides to this issue, and it seems both have good points. Isn't it always like this? :-)
    De gustibus non est disputandum

  22. #22

    Default Re: House Haters

    Dont blow it out of proportion, guys.

    All that nearfantastica said was that it is may be silly and arrogant (or a less insulting word: "wrong", for the more sensitive types) to slam a fragrance just because its from a less than revered house.

    I didnt read anywhere in his original post issues regarding "Seeking" out fragrances of a certain house. All he said was that, lets say, if a sample from a lesser house fell in your lap, give it a fair chance and dont judge based on preconceived notions.

    Ok...now I am off to play with my samples of Prada Men, CK Euphoria, and Zegna Z...with no preconceived notions
    -

  23. #23
    Scentronic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Metro Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    2,748

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote: "Ok...now I am off to play with my samples of Prada Men, CK Euphoria, and Zegna Z...with no preconceived notions"

    Yeah, no sh*t! It is impossible not to!

    After all, isn't that what we all came here for in the first place?... To learn about stuff we might want to buy? Some of us have learned not to expect to like certain things, just as we've come to anticipate certain things because of repeated positive experiences with the line. I like the term "informed prejudice".

    that being said, Euphoria smelled pretty similar to how I thought it would. That means something to me...In the same light, so did Cafe Noir, which is a favorite of mine. What's the difference? Euphoria shares a sort of commonality with many other Calvin Klein scents, and seemed generic and uninspired, as do most of "his" other scents. On the other hand, the reviews I had read prior to purchasing Cafe Noir accurately described the scent, which I expected to like in advance.

    This is solid evidence that the marketing and image of any product, not just fragrances, can affect your overall evaluation (or lack, thereof).
    Lately I've been wearing:
    Windsor, Bois de Santal, Original Santal, Elixir, Douro, Endymion, Reflection, Arcus, Marwah

  24. #24

    Default Re: House Haters

    I see very few examples on these boards of people dismissing fragrances they haven't tried based on some animus toward the "house." People here are not interested in reading such uninformed commentaries.

    But for individuals there are, I think, very reasonable reasons for dismissing certain makers of products from time to time without going to the trouble of trying the products. For example:

    - manufacturers with a reputation for producing "cheap pieces of crap." I don't feel silly or arrogant if I don't try out every new "Quantaray" brand camera lens. It's not arrogant, really, to acknowledge that some products are made for people who can't tell the difference, and to take little interest in such products as a matter of course if we can tell the difference.

    - manufacturers we object to for philosophical, historical, etc. reasons. I don't like rewarding those who rip off other people's ideas. I don't like rewarding company founders who use sharp practices and puffery to carve out market share at the expense of those whom those founders should have shown loyalty and fair play.

  25. #25

    Default Re: House Haters

    By the way, perfectfeet, I tried Cafe Noir. Would it be arrogant or silly of me to say I think it sucked? :-) Just kidding, but it was a bit much for me.
    De gustibus non est disputandum

  26. #26

    Default Re: House Haters

    A predisposition to like a house does have bearing on what I try. More specifically it will very often have to do with the fact that I will often give fragrances a much longer look if I respect, or like, their body of work. I will give a much longer look to a fragrance that I find mediocre if it's a house that I tend to like a lot of scents from. While probably not fair, there's simply too many things to try that are out there to give everything multiple wearings. If I like the house, I am more inclined to give it a go.

  27. #27

    Default Re: House Haters

    Good points on all sides. On one hand, I have this wish to someday become a more astute smeller, and I have this fond mental image of the master perfumer, like the master sommelier, to be able to blindly smell (or taste, with the sommelier metaphor) a fragrance and be able to unlock its intricacies...all done blind, without having any doubt as to the master's judgment being swayed by a bottle or name.

    On the other hand, we live in a consumer culture. Houses invest ridiculous amounts of money in their image. For example, I have heard that haute couturiers such as Hermes will actually destroy surplus rather than suffer the indignity of marking it down, because their brand image will suffer if they go the outlet route.

    One of my favorite blogs does blind smell tests, which is always fun to read about. However, I'm going to be influenced by names, houses, designs, marketing campaigns, and bottles because it's impossible not to be.

    I think it's great to have a noble ambition to leave your preconceived notions at the door, if that's what you choose. I also think it's fine to have a favoured or non-favoured house, because some of them have definitely earned it in my little book.

  28. #28
    Scentronic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Metro Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    2,748

    Default Re: House Haters

    Yeah, Config, that's the (only) problem I have with Cafe Noir as well...It is so strong! I wish it was about half as strong. The scent itself is wonderful, but I will admit that any more than one spray is going to kick everyone in the room's ass. And I had to spring for the 100 ml bottle, which had to be special ordered! This stuff will last a life time.

    I keep the noir and my other lighter coffee scent, Black Vetyver Cafe on hand when I want something not so intense. That one, however, requres about a dozen sprays to last much.

    Way off topic. Well, maybe not...

    No, I don't think it's arrogant to have an informed prejudice about product lines....However, it might be arrogant to consider yourself "above" a fragrance, especially if you haven't even tried it yet.

    Wal-Mart sells clothing. I like to buy clothes a bit nicer and more stylish than Wal-Mart sells. Hence, I don't shop at Wal-Mart for my clothes, and if I go there for something else, chances are I'm not even going to consider looking at clothes. Now does this mean that I'm arrogant because I don't like what I've seen of the clothes there? No. Where I'd cross the line into arrogant is when I would start to consider myself better, or just better-dressed than the clothing shoppers at wal-mart...I may very well be "better dressed" in my mind, but this is all objective, just as are fragrances.

    I can be impressed with things I've seen from a line and therefore look forward to trying others, while at the same time having an informed prejudice about lets say..the Lucky line, since I've never tried anything I liked from them. Why should I have any inclination that the next lucky will be the one that wins me over? Well, I shouldn't...but until I try it and fairly evaluate it, I'm not going to go trash-talk it.

    Now the Daytona 500 cologne that is basically exclusive to wal-mart and k-mart............I can't tell you what it smells like, but..... unless I was an obvious nascar fan, I wouldn't be cought dead with that bottle on my shelf. This is a matter of image and marketing. The scent itself might be great, but this is obviously marketed to a certain social strata, wouldn't you say?

    Its hard to have spent two grand and a year studying and collecting fragrances, only to be told that I should not consider my taste in any higher regard than that of an un-studied nose. I've refined my collection, and my tastes to accommodate a feeling of olfactory advancement, among other things...Why am I not allowed to feel like I've transcended the general population in this regard? I can name hundreds of fragrances by smelling them, and I can usually "decode" several of the notes in a fragrance. Doesn't this afford me some knowledge or ability that sets me above the crowd and makes my opinion more valuable? No, I guess not, since it's all objective and relative.
    Lately I've been wearing:
    Windsor, Bois de Santal, Original Santal, Elixir, Douro, Endymion, Reflection, Arcus, Marwah

  29. #29

    Post Re: House Haters

    In principle you have a point, but I'm going to play devil's advocate here in favor of preconceived notions. Don't forget that p.n.s, which are after all forms of categorization we use to structure the world around us, do have a purpose: to filter out information which previous experience has taught us will likely be irrelevant to us, something quite important if there is too much information out there to process. Notice Im talking about informed prejudice here, not questionable traditions (my grandfather always said Creed sucks/rules and I believe him blindly...)

    So of the hundreds of perfumes thrown on the market every year, which am I going to try, how will I set my priorities? Let me tell ya, David Beckham and Paris Hilton don't have much of a chance, a new dior or Creed has.
    Sure, I might miss a really great Beckham fragrance, in fact, if my preconceptions become too encrusted, I might miss the house of Beckham's transformation into a top quality house (well, other BNers would call attention to this, that's why it's so valuable to have a community like this, despite inevitable disagreements).

    Well, you can't have it all. Surely an ultimate judgement of the individual fragrance must be based on trying it. And I'm fully aware what damage prejudice can do when applied to people/groups (however, cognitively, it's unfortunately inevitable). But hey, it's only perfume here and these days one can make sometimes make pretty adequate predictions about what the new XYZ is going to be like. So, I'm not going to listen to any new Britney Spears Album but will check out a new Robert Pollard release, will not try any new corn syrup plus ârtificial flavoring candy bar but will test a new organic cereal, will not order samples of any new Coty fragrance, but will be interested in a new Lutens (though it may disappoint me). And if, say, I've hated every single Guerlain out there (unlikely, I know) why should a new one be a priority?
    That's precisely what I had in mind concerning this topic, a great post the_good_life! I don't think there is a need for me to add anything here.

  30. #30

    Default Re: House Haters

    Hilfiger could put out the greatest frag in history, and I would honestly not even bother testing it.

  31. #31

    Default Re: House Haters

    perfectfeet: I think you mean "subjective," not "objective"!

    Anyway I think you've posed some interesting questions. My thoughts:

    1. I don't think it's wrong to have a prejudice. I think it's useful to acknowledge prejudices where they may affect opinions you're expressing, but at the same time I think it's of dubious value merely to express or advertise prejudices in their own right.
    2. I agree it is arrogant to imply one's personal qualities (such as knowledge, abilities, and tastes) are superior to others', for whatever reason.
    3. I hold open the possibility arrogance of certain kinds in certain circumstances might be justified. (Not to name any names, scentemental!)
    4. I think devoting time to something and acquiring skill in it does enable you to make better objective judgements, such as identifying particular fragrances, notes, or other categories; but
    5. it is unclear to me whether factual knowledge and objective abilities confer any authority to one's tastes and preferences.


    Cheers!
    Last edited by d4; 28th November 2006 at 08:44 PM.

  32. #32

    Default Re: House Haters

    I agree with so many things on this thread but not everything.

    I fully understand nearfantastica's opening post and completely agree - we should not classify a fragrance as "bad" just because it came from a certain house. However, I think it is justifiable to skip over a scent from a certain house because of past experiences with the house.

    Yes, testing fragrance based on house/past experience is kind of biased but as Paul said, there are SO many fragrances and only so much time. Unless we select for certain fragrances to try out, we will spend ALL our time just testing fragrances non-stop. If we stick with what generally works, we will save a lot of time and money in the long run.

    There are houses that I no longer seek out. Names that come to mind include Calvin Klein and Hugo Boss. This is because many of their offerings have failed to really impress me. However, there are fragrances they offer that I do enjoy. I love CK Escape in the summer and Obsession in the winter. Hugo Boss Bottled is also great in the winter. However, I can't say the same for their other offerings.

    A house which I definitely seek out is Serge Lutens. I like their stuff. I really like their stuff. But that doesn't mean I think every single of their fragrances are masterpieces. Chypre Rouge: I tested it with no preconceptions whatsoever - and hated it. Then I read reviews and saw that I wasn't on my own. YSL is my favorite designer house (followed closely by Chanel). I really like their line for men but I have to admit, the new L'Homme is really not very YSLesque and smells like "just another watered down designer frag!"

    What I'm trying to show with these examples is that there's always the possibility of a great fragrance from a house - the only difference is that some houses just offer a higher number of agreeable fragrances than not. IE. 4 out of 5 SL fragrances work for me while only 1/5 CK fragrances work. It makes more sense to stick with a house with offerings that are more likely going to work with you.

    I guess THE most important thing, however, is to trust your own nose. If you think it smells good, it does. End of story.

  33. #33

    Default Re: House Haters

    Hugo Boss was just another design house - a German one - as far as I was concerned till I heard that they designed and outfitted the Nazi SS - no hate, it's more a boycott for me.

    Wikipedia has more info that does not look disputed.

    Gary

  34. #34
    Scentronic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Metro Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    2,748

    Default Re: House Haters

    Subjective VS. Objective...

    I always screw those up!

    Thanks for the correction, and feel free to PM me with any method you might reccommend to help me remember which to use when!

    (Yes, I'm serious)
    Lately I've been wearing:
    Windsor, Bois de Santal, Original Santal, Elixir, Douro, Endymion, Reflection, Arcus, Marwah

  35. #35

    Arrow Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by perfectfeet
    Subjective VS. Objective...

    I always screw those up!

    Thanks for the correction, and feel free to PM me with any method you might reccommend to help me remember which to use when!

    (Yes, I'm serious)
    I'll just post this publicly; those who have no trouble with these words can skip to the next post.

    I think if you are familiar with the use of the words "subject" and "object," you'll get "subjective" and "objective" right too.

    Recall that in a sentence, the subject performs an action, and the object (if any) is what the action is performed on. In the sentence "John smells perfume," John is the subject, and perfume is the object.

    Similarly (quoting from Wikipedia), "In philosophy, a subject is a being which has subjective experiences or a relationship with another entity (or 'object'). A subject is an observer and an object is a thing observed."

    So the "subjective" relates specifically to the subject (perhaps taking place exclusively in the mind) while the "objective" relates specifically to the object (perhaps existing in some external reality). Hence if the perfume contains vanilla and was made in France, these are objective properties; but if John thinks the perfume smells good, this is subjective.

    Whether being an oriental perfume is a subjective or an objective property is left as an exercise for the reader.
    Last edited by d4; 28th November 2006 at 11:41 PM.

  36. #36

    Default Re: House Haters

    Quote Originally Posted by fredricktoo
    Hugo Boss was just another design house - a German one - as far as I was concerned till I heard that they designed and outfitted the Nazi SS - no hate, it's more a boycott for me.

    Wikipedia has more info that does not look disputed.

    Gary
    Do you refuse to take Aspirin? or if you were sick not use a pharamceutical drug by Merck? do you refuse to ride in any Mercedes, BMW, Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep (all German owned), Volkswagen etc. etc. automobile? refuse to use Henkel knives in your kitchen? So on and so on.

    Just to point out that using an argument like that is hypocritical. I guarantee there are countless products you use every day of your life that are made by companies that helped the Nazis, used slave labour, etc. etc.

  37. #37

    CologneJunkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Overland Park/Lawrence, KS
    Posts
    4,789
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: House Haters

    I try to sample everything I can. I don't want to risk missing out on "the one." (hmm...maybe I should start applying this to my love life...)

    I seem to have the opposite "problem" than discussed in this thread. I WANT to like certain houses because I love a particular frag from them.....but don't like anything else. For example, Bvlgari Black is the only frag from that house I'm crazy about. Same w/ Mugler, I love TM cologne, but nothing else. I WANT to like the houses...but it just doesn't happen.
    "Wait...is David Bowie really God?" - Penelope Garcia

  38. #38

    Default Re: House Haters

    ...
    Last edited by myaccolades; 29th November 2006 at 01:30 AM.

Similar Threads

  1. The Perfume House, Portland, Oregon
    By adamgottschalk in forum Male Fragrance Discussion
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 23rd January 2014, 06:37 AM
  2. Replies: 18
    Last Post: 3rd March 2013, 10:18 AM
  3. House Referendum -- Yves Saint Laurent
    By DustB in forum Male Fragrance Discussion
    Replies: 59
    Last Post: 24th November 2008, 11:26 PM
  4. Fragrance House Styles
    By noggs in forum Male Fragrance Discussion
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 24th January 2007, 11:01 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •