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  1. #1

    Default “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been Niche

    What mainstream male scents coulda been a contender for a great "niche" fragrance..
    Kouros maybe, or Gucci ph?






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    Last edited by afraafra; 14th September 2008 at 06:08 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that could've been N

    I loved the reference to the movie.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that could've been N

    I agree with Kouros being a decent niche. I also wonder the other way - which niche could have been "mainstream designer"?

    Kenzo is almost niche, IMO. I think that Kenzo Tokyo is a bit strange for a woody, in the same way that Hinoki is, and "coulda been niche". Kenzo Power also sounds like it coulda been a contender, but I still haven't sniffed it.
    * * * *

  4. #4

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that could've been N

    Quote Originally Posted by Redneck Perfumisto View Post
    I agree with Kouros being a decent niche. I also wonder the other way - which niche could have been "mainstream designer"?
    .
    The other way: maybe New York Nicolai?

  5. #5

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that could've been N

    Givenchy Incense & Vetiver
    Guerlain Heritage & Vetiver
    Chanel Egoiste & Antaeus
    Piguet Fracas & Bandit

    I believe that legendary mainstreams could easily be a niches
    Vetiver The Great!!!

  6. #6

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that could've been N

    By today's standards, Givenchy Gentleman is niche-like.

  7. #7

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    First of all, what is wrong with being mainstream? Does the status of being niche supierior to a designer status?

    Who needs niche when you have

    All YSL scents.
    All Guerlains (except the last one)
    All pre-Allure chanels
    All Guccis.
    The edible fig on Varvatos and Marc Jacobs has something quite L'Artisaneque.
    Signoricci
    Tumulte
    Yang
    The Dreamer.

    Coversely all Comptoir Sud Pacifique could have been mainstream. CdG could have been a designer brand... wait, it is! Some of their scents are actually quite ordinary and not all that special.
    Last edited by irish; 15th September 2008 at 07:02 PM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I think Terre D Hermes could be niche.

    Some of the classics in some sense were niche. Marketed to an a small group, daring for their day, not too common, etc. By that I mean Knize 10, Tabac Blonde, Bandit, etc

  9. #9

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    BTW Guerlain is niche

  10. #10

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by rompip View Post
    BTW Guerlain is niche
    It depends on which definition you are using. I can think of two criteria

    1. Company that exclusively makes perfumes.
    2. Dedicated company with limited distribution.

    Guerlain does not have limited distribution (I just have the bad luck of living in a town that sells no Guerlain in a 150km radius). Unless you are talking about the special collection of scents only sold at their stores.
    If you only consider the first criterion then Coty (Aspen, Stetson, Vanilla Fields) is niche too.
    Is Acqua di Parma niche? it's owned by LVMH just like Guerlain.


    I shall continue. Who needs niche when you can have:
    The Carons.
    Boucheron
    CK Be (the mainstream anti perfume)
    The Vintage Ungaros I, II, III
    Grey Flannel
    Fahrenheit is pretty "out there" too.
    Last edited by irish; 16th September 2008 at 03:04 AM.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Oscar Pour Lui
    Van Cleef & Arpels
    Giorgio
    Cacharel PH

  12. #12

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I'm surprised no-one has mentioned Lalique Encre Noir. And I agree on the Gucci PH.


    PVC and Leather. A Chain and a feather




  13. #13

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Kenzo Air (Ouzo + hay, weak lasting strength)
    Paul Smith London
    Fleur du Male (maybe)
    Looking for: Andy Tauer - L'air du Desert Morocain & Incense Extreme

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  14. #14
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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    BTW - A recent thread entitled "Which designer fragrances are good enough to be niche?"

    http://community.basenotes.net/showt...designer+niche
    Last edited by petruccijc; 14th September 2008 at 10:37 AM.
    Please feel free to check out my Swap Thread - Patou pour Homme, L'Instant de Guerlain PH Extreme, Dior Homme Intense, Pure Malt, Pure Coffee and many more! Click Here For My Swap Thread

  15. #15

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Kouros 4 LIFE !
    AUSSIES, come join our SPLIT GROUP at http://groups.google.com.au/group/oz-scent-splits

    "No Pain, No Gain"

  16. #16

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    None. Although many "niche" ones should be declared "designer quality".

  17. #17

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I understand niche to refer to houses that consider artistry as well as mass market sales. The boundary tends to be blurry. Such magnificent mainstreams as Antaeus, Egoiste! Such appealing niches as PdN New York, Ambre Russe,! It is too hard for me to sort out!

  18. #18

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Azzaro Pour Homme
    Armand Basi Homme
    YSL M7

  19. #19

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by javagreen View Post
    I'm surprised no-one has mentioned Lalique Encre Noir. And I agree on the Gucci PH.
    Ditto on Encre Noir, and add Dior Homme.
    Last edited by Snafoo; 14th September 2008 at 02:08 PM.
    Everyone is entitled to his own opinions, but not his own facts. Daniel Moynihan

  20. #20

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Yes, Encre Noir is an excellent choice.
    And I suggest the following: Armani (original). It is so widely available, and yet it is not the current style. IMO it is the classiest of the 70-80's fougeres. The lemon gives a lift and lightness to the otherwise powerful elements. In today's marketplace, it really stands out.
    odysseusm

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  21. #21

    Thumbs up Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by Dimitrios View Post
    Oscar Pour Lui
    Van Cleef & Arpels
    Giorgio
    Cacharel PH
    Yep. He said it.

  22. #22

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I think Bulgari Black can be thrown into the mix.

    I'd like to second YSL M7 as anything with oud seems out of the mainstream designer safe zone.

  23. #23


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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    We have a few blurry definitions of the term "niche fragrance," but what exactly is the proper definition? I think our analysis will be very blurry unless we nail down a proper definition and then go from there.

    The formal definition of the term "niche" is the following: a submarket that emerges to provide a product that the mainstream market is not addressing. Now, by definition a "niche" can outgrow itself once it influences the mainstream market, as it will not longer be considered "niche" because it is part of the mainstream market. I think an interesting question is what fragrances were "niche" but have evolved and become part of the mainstream market thus losing their "niche" status?
    Last edited by TheAttorney; 15th September 2008 at 07:08 PM.

  24. #24

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Ohh the classic conundrum...

    Frankly speaking - in this world of globalization- if a perfume is available on internet- its no longer NICHE in my books.. WHY !! because it can be bought at a click of a button...

    I concur with the person who said about blurry definitions...it behooves us that we define what Niche is...

    Niche to me bespeaks of an "UNCOMMON SCENT of good quality WHICH IS HARD TO OBTAIN- and not found on many people" -perhaps Custom Blended perfume which a person sits with the perfumer and makes a perfume conformal to his/ her's preferences...

    I wouldnt call CDG or Montale Niche because its available on the net...but at an exhorbitant price...
    Frederic Malle- yes perhaps. An attar blended for me in the by lanes of Istanbul or Bahrain or Bombay is niche for me- because- it was made right before me and just for me- to suit my skin chemistry and my temperament..etc.

    So you see sirs, Niche is a very subjective thing...what niche is for me - might be plebian for you...


    from my personal collection ,me thinks- M7 , Bulgari Black, YSL Nu Guerlain vetiver...fit the bill. but...the questions till looms over us


  25. #25

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I'll third M7 - it feels very nichey to me.
    For swap/sale: NIB: Pure Malt, Floris Vetiver, Vintage Tiffany, Charriol Royal Leather, Dior Homme; Dior Homme Intense, Chanel PMC, M7 gel, Roma (women's), LIDGE, Spicebomb, Trussardi Uomo, Obsession, others...
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  26. #26

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by zephyr16 View Post
    Ohh the classic conundrum...

    Frankly speaking - in this world of globalization- if a perfume is available on internet- its no longer NICHE in my books.. WHY !! because it can be bought at a click of a button...

    I concur with the person who said about blurry definitions...it behooves us that we define what Niche is...

    Niche to me bespeaks of an "UNCOMMON SCENT of good quality WHICH IS HARD TO OBTAIN- and not found on many people" -perhaps Custom Blended perfume which a person sits with the perfumer and makes a perfume conformal to his/ her's preferences...

    I wouldnt call CDG or Montale Niche because its available on the net...but at an exhorbitant price...
    Frederic Malle- yes perhaps. An attar blended for me in the by lanes of Istanbul or Bahrain or Bombay is niche for me- because- it was made right before me and just for me- to suit my skin chemistry and my temperament..etc.

    So you see sirs, Niche is a very subjective thing...what niche is for me - might be plebian for you...


    from my personal collection ,me thinks- M7 , Bulgari Black, YSL Nu Guerlain vetiver...fit the bill. but...the questions till looms over us

    Isn't CDG ( Comme des Garcons ) under the company Coty ( mass market group) ? Would that not in itself make it non-niche ? I suppose it depends on who the perfumers are as well.

    PS : M7 is really niche to me. It also apparently flopped on the market, so I suppose that is evidence that it is good enough to be niche.

  27. #27

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I like the quote, but I agree that the distinction implies a hierarchy that perhaps was only meaningful for a few years in the 90s, when niche brands were in a way continuing a tradition of quality while the designer market was taking a nosedive in terms of ingredient quality and originality. Today niche is often merely a marketing gimmick to justify high prices for the same half-baked designs stuffed with cheap synths the mass market offers. I think pretty much every good perfume could be repackaged as luxurious niche. Certainly the male Carons and Guerlains and Patous and Desprez, as well as Aramis JHL, Cacharel ph, even Burberry Brit, so many many others.
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  28. #28

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Yang.
    CDG 3 (The one you CAN'T find anywhere) for trade.
    Full 4 oz Bottle of Silver Mountain Water(95% full) for trade(purchased at Nordstrom not online). PM me for details.

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  29. #29
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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post
    We have a few blurry definitions of the term "niche fragrance," but what exactly is the proper definition?
    Nietzche: "All things are subject to interpretation; whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth."

    Niche-y: "Egoiste is the very essence of a noble soul."

    Nichey-isms: "I still live, I still stink: I still have to live, for I still have to stink."
    "L'Artisan raises its head where Creeds relax."
    Eddie: Sweetie, what are you drinking?
    Patsy: Oh, this? Chanel No. 5.
    -- Absolutely Fabulous

  30. #30

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I'll agree with the great choices of;

    Burberry London

    Jacques Fath Yang

    I'll add;

    Rochas Man

    Ungaro III

    The scent grows richer, he knows he must be near
    He finds a long passageway lit by chandelier
    Each step he takes, the perfumes change
    From familiar fragrance to flavours strange
    A magnificent chamber meets his eye

  31. #31

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Sometimes I think of making a thread called "Niches that could have been YSL products."

    Speaking very casually, and thus blurring the lines defining niche and designer, I think niche means some kind of unusualness that at an extreme can be outrageous or statement making in some different way. I think YSL Pour Homme would easily fit under the L'Artisan roof, Kouros under the lean-to canopy of Etat Libre d'Orange maybe, and M7 under the MPG roof, for example. There are some more I can't think of right away. Nu edp would be made by one of those very small houses with a nifty name that were just incorporated yesterday. The ones that sell very expensive scents with nifty names for bourgeois fantasies of bohemianism.
    --Chris
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  32. #32


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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post
    We have a few blurry definitions of the term "niche fragrance," but what exactly is the proper definition? I think our analysis will be very blurry unless we nail down a proper definition and then go from there.

    The formal definition of the term "niche" is the following: a submarket that emerges to provide a product that the mainstream market is not addressing. Now, by definition a "niche" can outgrow itself once it influences the mainstream market, as it will not longer be considered "niche" because it is part of the mainstream market. I think an interesting question is what fragrances were "niche" but have evolved and become part of the mainstream market thus losing their "niche" status?
    BTW, the definition of "niche" that I submitted was from the Webster's Dictionary sitting in the library in my office so I did not just make that up, it is the actual definition. I just figured if we had a definition then it would further this discussion.
    Last edited by TheAttorney; 16th September 2008 at 04:02 AM.

  33. #33
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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post
    BTW, the definition of "niche" that I submitted was from the Webster's Dictionary sitting in the library in my office so I did not just make that up, it is the actual definition. I just figured if we had a definition then it would further this discussion.
    Since Guerlain is now part of the LVMH empire perhaps only their pre-1994 work would be niche?

  34. #34

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I've said before (so many members will please forgive me for repeating myself) that ownership or not, Guerlain and Caron fill a grey area. They are huge market suppliers in most department stores just like designer stuff, but they're only makers of things for the nose, just like niche houses.

    Also they're very old houses, and who could blame them for building themselves up into the master powerhouses of manufacturing and worldwide supply they've made themselves into since the industrial revolution? They're houses who have made things just for the nose, and made themselves to top of their games through one hundred years of marketplace life.

    I evaluate their products against niche houses when I mentally process them though, because like niche houses they make things only for the nose.

    Just my way of working with the words, the hazy definitions, and the times.
    --Chris
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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    HELMUT LANG CUIRON

    as good as ANY niche scent i've ever smelled. It was so limited in production that some could argue it almost was a niche scent.

  36. #36

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Ed Hardy Man, Yatagan, 3rd Man, L'Anarchist, New West.
    Renato
    Last edited by Renato; 16th September 2008 at 11:33 PM.

  37. #37

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Why make the distinction? Enjoy them for what they are!

  38. #38

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Personal taste as we all know is across the board so "niche" as in a product that smells better than the rest isn't a viable category. Niche in terms of quality of craftsmanship and oils used is another story. Chanel, Rochas, Estee Lauder/Aramis, Bulgari, Cartier Dior, Guerlain, YSL, Hermes, Boucheron and some others are houses that construct their fragrances with more attention than other outlets/houses. Each have at least one fragrance that can hold its own against the niche labels. Before the monster that is LVMH spawned and ate up the world 3 of the aformentioned houses where in a better place.

    Many of the older fragrances (pre-1990) are of niche caliber. Today's industry juggernaut, demanding a new scent every month doesn't allow for fine classics to be put out. Perhaps Montale and Lutens should offer a word regarding the rapid production of niche fragrances.

    An alternative question that is of interest is which niche fragrances should hang up the gloves, lower their prices and step into the department store weight class where they belong?

    Cheers,
    Al
    Last edited by anak; 17th September 2008 at 02:59 AM.

  39. #39

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    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    I know few will agree, but I think that had Prada Amber been released by a niche company it would be heralded as a fantastic, unique entity.

    I wore L'Occitane Eau des Baux yesterday. Not only was it as high quality and rich as any niche I've worn, it lasted 18 hours on my skin.

    Depending on whether you consider the Chanel Exclusifs 'niche' or not, they could nearly all be included (I consider them niche because of the low availability, low distribution, and high cost).

    Everso mentioned Cuiron, I agree with him and add in Helmut Lang EDC/EDP.

    and oh yes, Dior Homme... beauty in a bottle. I realized when I wore it last week that I go through a substantial amount (5ml+) every day I wear it because of over-applying and re-applying. There's nothing I love to have eminating from myself more than this.

  40. #40

    Default Re: “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender.” Mainstreams that coulda been N

    Prada Amber gets my vote, so does Gucci PH. Love both of those just as much as any of the niche I've got.

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