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  1. #1

    Default Trying to refine my tastes

    Hello, longtime lurker here, young male professional, fascinated by this community. First fragrance I ever tried was Polo Blue, gifted to me by a girlfriend. While I liked it, I was never particularly overjoyed to wear it. About half a year ago I decided to start regularly wearing cologne. Since then I've probably tried 40-50 fragrances, the vast majority through samples, to find what I like so far, and am interested in both refining my tastes and discovering new ones. I've declined asking the board for advice until I got to know my own tastes better. Just based on what I know, I'm looking for fragrances with (most or all of) the following properties:

    * Woodsy, oriental, or incense base/theme (cf. my top five below)
    * Versatile (sometimes I go straight from work to the gym or out to a bar)
    * Strong (My top three fragrances below will cause havoc if oversprayed, so I am rather spartan in my application. Because of this, I don't like to have to spray something eight times to know I'm wearing it.)
    * Long-lasting (cf. the above; my favorite fragrances take a while to react well with my body chemistry, while those I dislike react poorly, so I don't like having to reapply during the day)

    To give an example of what I wear regularly, my top five scents are probably

    1) Envy (one of my two "default" wears, if I'm undecided in the morning)
    2) Givenchy Pi (the other "default" wear)
    3) Divine L'Homme Sage (sophisticated and long-lasting)
    4) Carthusia Uomo (the outlier of the group, I suppose, a very clean scent)
    5) Terre d'Hermes (a good work scent)

    I also occasionally wear CdG Avignon, CdG 2Man, and Lubin Idole, but only when I'm in the right mood (and definitely never to work.)

    Five scents I quite dislike: CK Eternity (awful,) Polo Sport (and Polo Black and Double Black,) Chanel Allure Homme (just doesn't work on me,) Lolita Lempicka PH (same,) and AdG (although it's not really offensive, just overworn.)

    Thanks for taking the time to read! This is a fascinating hobby, to be sure, and reading the stories and reviews on this forum gives me not a small amount of pleasure.

  2. #2
    DULLAH's Avatar
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    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    Given your tastes, if you haven't already, go to L'Occitane and try Eau des Baux.
    It's woody, strong, and both dry and smooth in the opening, lots of different subtle spices.
    IMO the opening is ok, but the drydown is really unbelievable for the price.
    The drydown has the wood and spices there, with incense in front, and it's a really really good incense, very smooth and somewhat sweet. Like this!

    There is just barely too much vanilla for me on the drydown, not unlike Bois Du Portugal's sweet drydown, or even the final Sandalwood/vanilla stage of Green Irish Tweed. But since you listed GIvenchy Pi as one of your favorites, this will be no problem.

    L'Occitane Eau des Baux, I think is what you look for.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    Woody, Strong, Long-Lasting: Creed Bois du Portugal
    Versatile, Strong, Long-Lasting: Penhaligon's Endymion

    And I would disagree that Terre d'Hermes is a "good work scent." While it's great for being outside, I used two sprays of TDH for work and nearly suffocated my co-workers, who verbally voiced this. This had never happened before. If you do use it for work, use one spray...

  4. #4

    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    Thanks for the suggestions! I've heard great things about Creeds, esp. BdP, but have been unable to find samples available; do you know of a good place to procure some?

    As for wearing scents to work, given that I cut my teeth on Pi and Envy, I rarely use more than two sprays of anything (Divine's Le Homme Sage, for example, is amazing but requires the absolute lightest touch.) I find that I don't get too much sillage from Terre d'Hermes, and while it is strong it is never overpoweringly so, at least with my body chemistry. I suppose we can agree to disagree, or at least agree to be careful - I have no doubt that overapplication of TdH could be fatal!

  5. #5
    Snafoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    I would suggest some of the other Chanels - Pour Monsieur and Egoiste in particular. Also Heritage, Zino, French Lover (Bois d'Orage? I can never remember which) - all of which have nicely balanced spice, incense, and woods. All of the above are semi-formal to formalwear, so may not fit some of your listed environments.

    Eau des Baux is a very nice choice - if you like vanilla. The other notes listed by Dullah are certainly there, in force, but vanilla (or is it tonka? help!) carries it, IMO. Some folks love fragrances with lots of vanilla; I prefer it in my ice cream and lobster sauce (not to be confused with lobster in vanilla ice cream, which would be most unpleasant, I think).
    Last edited by Snafoo; 1st February 2008 at 12:29 PM.
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  6. #6
    argogos's Avatar
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    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    You will almost undoubtedly like Bulgari Notte and YSL Opium if you like Envy. (Of course every nose is different and this kind of blanket statement has bit me in the ass before.) Notte is a bit softer and Opium a bit stronger but clearly the same family. I also like Envy and Terre d'Hermes. I am on the fence with Pi. I don't care for Carthusia and am unfamiliar with The Divine product, but like sage.

    I appreciate all fragrances but am most enthused about wearing Spicy, woody, orientals and complex, masculine scents. I can't get enough of Robert Piguet's Bandit. Why it is considered feminine, I'll never understand. It is very leathery, heavy on traditional woods and has a spicy warmth. The florals in it are negligible to my nose.

    Having said that, I would recommend trying Penhaligon's Endymion, English Fern, and Opus 1870. They are all woody and masculine with Endymion being the more complex Opus 1870 the most staid, and English Fern the more invigorating.

    Have you tried Escada's Magnetism? It has a decidedly masculine feel and great sillage. It's not classically woody or spicy but interesting. The amber, musk, and leather ground it nicely and the schinus makes it glow.
    Last edited by argogos; 1st February 2008 at 10:06 PM.
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    I agree with Snafoo - try Heritage by Guerlain. Magnifiscent stuff.

    Another that comes to mind immediately is Black Aoud by Montale.

  8. #8
    Mattybumpkin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    Being that I also like 4 out the five you listed (haven't tried the Uomo) I would suggest:

    Chanel Egoiste
    Endymion
    Floris Santal
    Gucci PH
    "I have the simplest tastes. I am always satisfied with the best." - Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

    Current Rotation: Terre D'Hermes, Boucheron PH, Villoresi Uomo, Green Irish Tweed, Chanel PMC, Gucci PH, Floris Santal, Carven Homme, Dunhill '34, PI by Givenchy, Parfums de Nicolai New York

  9. #9

    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    I like most on your list too. L'Homme Sage is a special favorite.

    Carven Homme is worth trying. It's a good buy too. Creed Acier Aluminum. Nicolai New York.

    Terre d'Hermes is a work scent for me too, haven't suffocated any coworkers with it yet. I use Chanel Antaeus for that when necessary.

  10. #10
    foetidus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Trying to refine my tastes

    Quote Originally Posted by wingedmongoose View Post
    Thanks for the suggestions! I've heard great things about Creeds, esp. BdP, but have been unable to find samples available; do you know of a good place to procure some?
    Here are a couple of places for samples -- both very reliable dealers:

    http://www.perfumebay.com/miniatures...e-samples.html

    http://www.luckyscent.com/samples.asp

    The first one has designer samples, the second one has niche's.

    Good luck.

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