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  1. #1

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    Default diminished interest in designer scents....

    amazing that 6 months ago....i was praising (and wearing) lots of designer scents.....but lately, aside from a few designer scents that i am praising (Kiton Black, Porsche Design Essence, Varvatos Vintage, Eau Sauvage Cuir Fraicheur, Rive Gauche, Paco Rabanne)-----i can't really get myself to be interested in any designer scents. They're just not creative enough. They're just not 'deep' enough to enjoy as scents, i get tired of them after a couple testings.



    There is a huge lack of leather scents being made for designer companies, which REALLY turns me off to them...and in general, there is a lack of experimentation.

    i never wanted to be a niche whore....but it seems i'm heading in that direction these days. The sight of Sephora has just started to annoy me now.

    anyone else falling into the trap of niche elitism? i can't help it...but i am for sure.
    Last edited by everso; 30th November 2008 at 12:09 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by everso View Post
    amazing that 6 months ago....i was praising (and wearing) lots of designer scents.....but lately, aside from a few designer scents that i am praising (Kiton Black, Porsche Design Essence, Varvatos Vintage, Eau Sauvage Cuir Fraicheur, Rive Gauche, Paco Rabanne)-----i can't really get myself to be interested in any designer scents. They're just not creative enough. They're just not 'deep' enough to enjoy as scents, i get tired of them after a couple testings.



    There is a huge lack of leather scents being made for designer companies, which REALLY turns me off to them...and in general, there is a lack of experimentation.

    i never wanted to be a niche whore....but it seems i'm heading in that direction these days. The sight of Sephora has just started to annoy me now.

    anyone else falling into the trap of niche elitism? i can't help it...but i am for sure.

    LOL "niche whore", that's me, welcome to the snob club! I agree with you though, alot of the designer scents aka "mass market" scents aren't targeted for those looking for deep fragrances. There are a few diamonds in the rough though...

  3. #3

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by mcjra View Post
    LOL "niche whore", that's me, welcome to the snob club! I agree with you though, alot of the designer scents aka "mass market" scents aren't targeted for those looking for deep fragrances. There are a few diamonds in the rough though...
    aha! a NICHE WHORE!



  4. #4

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I dropped designer scents a long time ago. They aren't bad, just not me. I'm strictly niche now with the exception of Rive Gauche.

  5. #5

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    On my "Go To" shelf of most frequently used scents, I currently have:
    • Dior Homme
    • Acqua di Parma Colonia Assoluta
    • Rive Gauche Pour Homme
    • Creed Himalaya
    • Chanel PM 1955
    • Chanel PM Concentree
    • l'Artisan Fou d'Absinthe
    • Vetiver Extraordinaire
    • Sous le Vent
    • Narciso Rodriguez FH
    So out of 10 Go To's, 5 are designer and 5 are niche.

    Sure, niche scents are, on average, more creative and interesting. Designer houses must appeal to a broad clientele, most of whom don't have the same enthusiast's interest in fragrances as we niche whores. Personally, I try to measure all fragrances with the same ruler, and don't really give much thought to whether it has a designer brand on the label. In fact, I wear designer scents more frequently than niche simply because I find them more wearable in public, and sometimes I don't want to be overwhelmed by the genius of a fragrance - I just want to smell good.

    I love my Creeds but don't ask me to part with my Kouros!
    Last edited by Snafoo; 30th November 2008 at 01:10 AM.
    Everyone is entitled to his own opinions, but not his own facts. Daniel Moynihan

  6. #6
    AromiErotici
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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    It's nice having both designers and niche available IMO. There's successes and failures for both. It's true that alot of designers I have sampled this year are familiar one with the other and can seem redundant.

    I am now trying to keep diversity in what I wear so as not to become bored or desensitized to the juice I'm wearing.

  7. #7
    Morning Star

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I'm a little bit of a niche whore (love my Annick Goutal and Profumum fragrances, especially Ambre Fétiche, Acqua di Sale, and Thundra), but I've actually been rediscovering a lot of designer fragrances lately (e.g. Bulgari Blu Notte, Armani Attitude, etc). I try to evaluate them all on a level playing field. The bottom line is that a lot of the designer fragrances offer tremendous value for the cost.

  8. #8

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    my wife thinks my taste has gone from decent enuff too worse (Profumum Fumidis, Piper Nigrum, havana).. i would say im focussed on my favorite notes now...like Patchouli, earthy Vetivers, Incense, amber etc...and some of these niche houses offer that as a focussed note ...

    saying that, there are some designer scents which i can't dream of parting with...like XS, Rochas Lui, Dior Higher, Dior Homme, Givenchy Gentleman, Jacomo Rouge, Lagerfeld Photo, KL Homme and lots more....
    Last edited by jenson; 30th November 2008 at 03:09 AM.

  9. #9

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I've found the ratio of uninspiring fragrances between designer and niche to be about equal.

  10. #10

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I stopped being interested in designer scents right from the beginning of this year. I didn't have to take any effort for that to happen, it sort of happened by itself... and the reasons are exactly what you mention : lack of experimentation and that too many of them just smell alike.

    So yeah, been there, done that


    PVC and Leather. A Chain and a feather




  11. #11

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I'd have to have a clear and very specific definition of the difference between the two before making a blanket statement about them. However, I think the key point for me would be which ones that I like are considered "niche?" Is Carven Homme niche? What about Listen, the Samba fragrances, Jacomo Rouge and Silver (Man), Witness, Escada Magnetism, or Everlast Original 1910? Even Adidas Victory League and Lomani are better than most niche frags I've sampled, and I got them for around $7 a 100 ml bottle!

    It seems to me that we are talking about what happens after a person samples a lot of fragrances. Usually, there are two paths. One is to want more "power," while the other is to want more subtlety and less power. Luca Turin talks about niche frags as being mostly "bases," and that's been my experience too, though of course there are exceptions. After starting off liking the "power frags," I came to find myself unable to wear them, except perhaps in minute amounts (I even decant some into dab vials to keep the application minimal). This took a couple of months to occur. Now, I am mostly interested in the interplay of notes, "smoothness," uniqueness, balance, etc.

    However, I too wouldn't find much of interest in the men's section of the local Sephora. So, while there may be few "designer" frags worthy of note, if you consider the ones I like to be "designer," then I'd take issue with the definition of designer being used. If not, then it seems to be a matter of sampling enough of them. For example, out of the 7 Samba ones I've tried, I think three are excellent and the others are okay for once in while, though one I don't like because of certain notes in it (I do think it's well constructed though, if a bit simple). Many have noted that certain frags get little or no attention here on BN. For example, Lomani Cruiser for men costs very little and sounds interesting, yet it seems that no BNer has ever sampled it! I find this very strange, because one can buy 10 of these for one niche and still have some money in his pocket. I'm at a point where I think I have all my frag bases covered, so to speak, so now I'm mostly swapping or looking for "steals" on ebay.
    Last edited by Bigsly; 30th November 2008 at 03:45 AM.

  12. #12

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    You can avoid the classification 'designer v. niche' and look at it this way... some fragrances are sold and marketed on such a large scale that they require consumer testing and analysis, and are tweaked such that they appeal to the largest possible number of people. Also, the materials used can't be as expensive because the production runs are so large (and because profit points are dictated).

    Because of this, the houses that release these fragrances can't take the risks that a house producing fragrances only being offered to (or noticed by) fragrance aficionados. Those houses that are willing to take chances may have the flop here and there, but they will also be putting out the fragrances that are artistically more appreciated.

    It just happens that this is the the designer v. niche dichotomy - and it's not true in every case. Chanel is a designer house and I think most Chanel releases are of niche quality because they put that effort into them. Same with Hermes, and to a lesser extent Dior. There are designer scents, even new releases, that are great. It's just they're farther and fewer between than niche releases.

  13. #13

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    As a rule, designer scents appeal to me if they're from the pre-90's.
    I'm a firm believer that Aqua di Gio, the "non-fragrance lovers" aquatics and an over-exploitation of tea based scents, are perhaps the earmarks of the degradation of the "designer fragrance" concept. The "I hate Fragrance" 90's scents seem to have won. I'm not a big minimalist fan, I think if a new fragrance is worth doing, it needs to be somewhat complicated.
    To name a few specific people, Tom Ford has done some genuinely interesting things at Estee Lauder, Gucci and YSL, as has the brilliant Maurice Roucel at, Gucci, Karan, Lalique, Missoni and Hermes. When it comes to Ellena, I'm not sure if he's part of the problem or the brilliant future. Gaultier and Mugler, as designer house continue to challenge. And yes, Dior has the infamous Homme. But what has Givenchy, Chanel or YSL released in the last years that broke any new ground.
    Overall, the "designer" world is getting closer to being dead; most of the new stuff that arrives daily should be considered "drug store" quality; the equivalent of schlock of the gems Jade East and Hai Karate.
    But, do you really think niche houses are the answer? There's a lot of very high priced Italian filler available at Luckyscent these days.
    What I'm liking is how a traditional fragrance house like Guerlain is dealing with this. Maybe LVMH should do a hostile take over of Caron and get things back on track with them.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 30th November 2008 at 12:15 PM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    ............
    Last edited by jenson; 30th November 2008 at 04:42 AM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I entered the Basenotes forum with an already diminished interest in designer and drugstore scents, mostly because I had found a lot of them to be headache-inducing or nausea-inducing, and yet I felt there surely had to be something out there that didn't make me sick.

    Knocking on wood, I have yet to sample something from a niche house that gives me a migraine.

    Every now and then, I'll forget, and get bold and try something that's readily available, and I'll sample a few and be okay. So I'll get bolder, but then, I'll find several in a row that again make me ill.

    So, I don't know it's so much being a snob, as much as simply hating incapacitating headaches, but wanting to enjoy a fragrance.

    One drugstore scent I love though that definitely doesn't give me a headache is Juice Bar Cotton Candy. $2.99 a bottle.
    Last edited by Aiona; 30th November 2008 at 07:42 AM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    We touched upon this phenomena a while ago in my thread on Kouros Tattoo (read Scentementals response, post #9):

    http://community.basenotes.net/showthread.php?t=193642

    Let me also quote MonkeyManMatt from his A. Attitude review from May 2007:

    The worst part of all of this is, that with the Privé line (expensive and very hard to get) it’s obvious that the house of Armani is indeed still very capable of producing high quality, rich and original fragrances. This kind of dualistic cynicism, where the mainstream is served hastily put together junk sold mainly through the name is just saddening. I mean, who will seriously remember City Glam in 10 years? Do try the Privé line though if you have the opportunity, especially Privé Bois d'Encens is terrific.

    Bottomline is: The "designer" houses like Armani, Chanel, Dior etc are capable of releasing compelling scents. Its just that ...with the proliferation of fragrances, a dual market exists now...a regular line composed mostly of safe juices, and a more expensive and somewhat more experimental "Private" line which competes with niche houses and caters to the "elite". What we are smelling now in the Armani Prive line would probably not have been out of place in their regular line 20-30 years ago..
    Last edited by zztopp; 30th November 2008 at 07:27 AM.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....


    What a pity everso. I had high hopes you were going to prove an original, impartial, and questing voice on the board. That might still prove to be the case, but I think the dichotomy your labor under is a false one; even though, I frequently invoke it to attack its falsity. In my defense, I have also argued and shown how false it is and how easily it breaks down when examined.

    Of course, believing in the niche versus designer false dichotomy is already a symptom that you have succumbed to the certainty that you know "designer" fragrances--whatever they might actually be--and that the end of all questing can stop. No more Sephora stops for you, right? That loathsome place where all designer stuff resides. But it doesn't reside there. The history of perfumery before this subdivision of niche was manufactured, both literally and imaginatively, is a long one, with thousands upon thousands of fragrances. The true fragrance lover takes each fragrance one at a time, and examines it preferably outside of the imaginatively manufactured categories and, in doing so, builds up a steady, informed basis for seasoned comparative judgments based on the sampling and information gathered from such sampling. This is why any one on the board who ever has anything particular interesting to say about fragrances as fragrances rather than as categorical constructs always has an abiding interesting and passion for all kinds of fragrances and not just a narrow niche of fragrances. Conversely, the "niche whores," the more and more narrow their interests become, the more and more they mimic the ad copy of the very companies they worship. I know whose posts I like to read.

    Three things:

    1) It's interesting isn't that Betrand Dachaufour, possibly the hottest niche perfumer alive at the moment, when asked in a recent interview which fragrance he wished he had created answered "Dior Homme." Dior Homme is brilliant work of art not because it's designer fragrance, there's no denying that, but because it's a great fragrance, because as with all works of art, it transcends the categories within which it was developed. Designer fragrances have always been transcending categories and will continue to do so. That is where the creative impetus has always resided and that is where it currently resides, niche advertising copy notwithstanding.

    2) I have tried a good many of the niche fragrances released in the last 10 years, and a good many non niche fragrances as well over the years, probably more than most. Right now, as I write, on one wrist I have a designer fragrance from an $11.00 Buy It Now bottle I found on eBay that few people have heard of let alone tried, and it's absolutely superb. When I introduce people to such gems, they frequently marvel at how I find them. It's simple. I have always kept an open mind and purposely seek to try as many fragrances as humanely possibly with an extreme lack of prejudice. On the other hand, I have a discontinued, relatively hard-to-find "designer fragrance," again a little known fragrance and certainly a little tried fragrance, that is, if my judgment is valued by anyone at all, simply a marvel of the fragrant art of perfumery and more sophisticated than anything niche I have tried. The "niche whores" would consign these fragrances to obscurity. The rest of us will continue to enjoy them immensely thank you very much. I don't have a problem with people enjoying certain kinds of fragrances. I want people to enjoy as many different fragrances as they possible can. It's that simple.

    3)
    We shall not cease from exploration
    And the end of all our exploring
    Will be to arrive where we started
    And know the place for the first time.

    T.S. Eliot. from Little Gidding, The Four Quartets.

    Good luck to you everso, I really do hope your new found love will be sufficient.

    scentemental


    P.S. I will agree with your dissatisfaction with recent releases, but I could say the same about many niches fragrances, which like a lot of the Sephora pap that's sold these days will similarly fade into well-deserved obscurity. I don't think dismissing designer fragrances off hand is the answer though. I would take note of Ruggles advice, with the proviso that there are some gems even after 1990 till the present day and with the other proviso that you keep trying designer fragrances, even those that pop up at Sephora. We expect too high of a strike rate these days. Remember, Cuiron was once sold at Sephora. BTW, how many of the classic designer leathers have you tried and that includes women's designer leathers? If you want some recommendations PM me.




    Last edited by scentemental; 30th November 2008 at 02:21 PM.

  18. #18

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Excellently said Scentemental. And your other expositions debunking the quality myth when it comes to (most) niche houses have been equally as excellent as well.

    After having smelled Ungaro II, Grey Flannel, and a host of other magnificent designer scents, I feel bad for those who would categorically ignore them. Every scent - even if we don't like it - can be enjoyed on some level, even if it is only showing us new interpretations of familiar accords.

    Another dichotomy seems to exist parallel - or interwoven, perhaps - with the niche/designer dichotomy; the willingness to sniff a designer fragrance for what it is and evaluate it on its own terms (i.e. seek the differences) versus sniffing the label and seeking to discredit it entirely by labeling it an X clone (seeking the similarities).
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  19. #19

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Please scentemental, give us some examples of the gems you've discovered. The only thing I want to buy at Sephora these days is Guerlain Homme.

  20. #20

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I can understand your diminished interest. Much of the crop of the last six years of so has been of the more inoffensive/ don't notice me type scents.

    Yet, while I have a drawer full of niche scents (see my wardrobe), I still go for the stronger designer scents more often than not. At the end of a working day, they do what most niche scents don't do - keep you smelling fresh and good.
    Renato

  21. #21
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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by scentemental View Post

    Right now, as I write, on one wrist I have a designer fragrance from an $11.00 Buy It Now bottle I found on eBay that few people have heard of let alone tried, and it's absolutely superb.
    Jesus, which is it??? (No sea mezquino y eduque el soberano, por favor - Don't be mean and illustrate us, please!!!)
    Last edited by Pollux; 30th November 2008 at 02:09 PM.

  22. #22

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by scentemental View Post

    What a pity everso. I had high hopes you were going to prove an original, impartial, and questing voice on the board. That might still prove to be the case, but I think the dichotomy your labor under is a false one; even though, I frequently invoke it to attack its falsity. In my defense, I have also argued and shown how false it is and how easily it breaks down when examined.

    Of course, believing in the niche versus designer false dichotomy is already a symptom that you have succumbed to the certainty that you know "designer" fragrances--whatever they might actually be--and that the end of all questing can stop. No more Sephora stops for you, right? That loathsome place where all designer stuff resides. But it doesn't reside there. The history of perfumery before this subdivision of niche was manufactured, both literally and imaginatively, is a long one, with thousands upon thousands of fragrances. The true fragrance lover takes each fragrance one at a time, and examines it preferably outside of the imaginatively manufactured categories and, in doing so, builds up a steady, informed basis for seasoned comparative judgments based on the sampling and information gathered from such sampling. This is why any one on the board who ever has anything particular interesting to say about fragrances as fragrances rather than as categorical constructs always has an abiding interesting and passion for all kinds of fragrances and not just a narrow niche of fragrances. Conversely, the "niche whores," the more and more narrow their interests become, the more and more they mimic the ad copy of the very companies they worship. I know whose posts I like to read.

    Three things:

    1) It's interesting isn't that Betrand Dachaufour, possibly the hottest niche perfumer alive at the moment, when asked in a recent interview which fragrance he wished he had created answered "Dior Homme." Dior Homme is brilliant work of art not because it's designer fragrance, there's no denying that, but because it's a great fragrance, because as with all works of art, it transcends the categories within which it was developed. Designer fragrances have always been transcending categories and will continue to do so. That is where the creative impetus has always resided and that is where it currently resides, niche advertising copy notwithstanding.

    2) I have tried a good many of the niche fragrances released in the last 10 years, and a good many non niche fragrances as well over the years, probably more than most. Right now, as I write, on one wrist I have a designer fragrance from an $11.00 Buy It Now bottle I found on eBay that few people have heard of let alone tried, and it's absolutely superb. When I introduce people to such gems, they frequently marvel at how I find them. It's simple. I have always kept an open mind and purposely seek to try as many fragrances as humanely possibly with an extreme lack of prejudice. On the other hand, I have a discontinued, relatively hard-to-find "designer fragrance," again a little known fragrance and certainly a little tried fragrance, that is, if my judgment is valued by anyone at all, simply a marvel of the fragrant art of perfumery and more sophisticated than anything niche I have tried. The "niche whores" would consign these fragrances to obscurity. The rest of us will continue to enjoy them immensely thank you very much. I don't have a problem with people enjoying certain kinds of fragrances. I want people to enjoy as many different fragrances as they possible can. It's that simple.

    3)
    We shall not cease from exploration
    And the end of all our exploring
    Will be to arrive where we started
    And know the place for the first time.

    T.S. Eliot. from Little Gidding, The Four Quartets.

    Good luck to you everso, I really do hope your new found love will be sufficient.

    scentemental



    well i'm not gonna dissappoint you too much scentemental. my cynical eye thrown towards a passing 'Sephora' sign isn't enough to detract from my power of experimentation in obscure, forgotten designer scents. When i refer to my diminishing view of designer scents, i am NOT referring to my view on ALL designer scents----i am referring to my diminishing view on the Sephora racks of 'hot fragrances for men' and 'best sellers'.

    I own a bottle of Dior Homme...which i don't use at the moment. Not because i don't love it, but because it feels too predictable to me these days. I will be the first to acknowledge it's a great scent-----but it doesn't change enough for me wearing-to-wearing....so i'm taking a break from it.

    My favourite perfume shop is a shady perfume outlet way out in Long Island, which i found accidentally while attending a conference out there. It has boxes upon boxes of old, obscure designer scents which i rummage through everytime i'm there. old, worn boxes of unused and bizarre failed designer scents which are unloved and unwanted....but negotiable for a bargain. I never enjoy fragrance hunting more than i do at this shop. In fact, as much as i love AEDES, i love this weird little perfume outlet much much MUCH more. There is an aura of experimentation there....and for this reason, i understand what you are saying and i acknowledge its truth.

    Maybe i shouldn't do a blanket slating of designer fragrances. You're right. There is much to be found, tried, and loved.....

    but my statement had to do with those ads in magazines with the smelly paper, the rack of bestsellers at Sephora, and the SA standing at the front of Macy's forcing you to try the latest rubbish scent by Guess. Those things are unsavoury for even an amateur such as myself.

    I've only really been into this hobby for about 9 months now. Prior to that, i bought 1 fragrance a year----albeit, very excitedly, however i never realised how much there was to this hobby. Now i know....

    As someone mentioned...there are plenty of poor niche fragrances as well....and i definitely agree. Everytime i visit AEDES, for every one fragrance i fall in love with----i try about 15 that i think suck......that ratio is probably the same in designer scents too....however i think the advantage of niche scents, is the ability to pinpoint your interests and experiment in it. For example, i LOVE LOVE LOVE leather scents, and i can find the niche scents that go after this genre quite easily.....can't say the same for current designer scents.

    i won't dissappoint. i just need time.
    cheers!

  23. #23

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    What I tried to say in an earlier post - but didn't articulate well - was echoed more clearly by zztop and scentimental. It's not who is releasing the scent, but the artistry involved. When releasing a fragrance meant to appeal to the global masses, a house is less inclined to take chances. That's a good point that zztop makes that the big houses are capable of releasing such fragrances when they want to. Keep in mind that the Prive and Exclusifs line are really targeted at aficionados, not the masses, hence why the quality (and price) is higher.

    Dior Homme is an aberration precisely because Dior took a chance on doing something radically different with a mass-marketed and released fragrance. It's been a huge success, but it could have just as easily been something of a flop the way D&G By seems to have been. Fragrance collectors like By, but the public didn't.

    I agree every fragrance should be judged on its own merits - I've got plenty of designer fragrances I love dearly - it just seems that the percentage of artistically meritorious fragrances aren't the ones we see at the mall. Just look at the '08 designer male releases.... Versace Pour Homme, Pi Neo, Roadster, D&G The One, Gucci by Gucci, Boss Pure, He Wood, Armani Diamonds, Dior Homme Sport, Infusion d'Homme, and Polo Modern Reserve. Of those (and I'm probably forgetting a couple), only the last two - Prada and Polo - really stand out (and even the Prada is still something of a 'fresh' fragrance, but because it's iris-based it's somewhat different), and it's thus no coincidence that these are the one's I wanted to purchase. I feel like if you have one of these, you don't need to buy any more.

    My point in listing these is to show that in order to appeal to the widest possible buying population, none of these houses took a chance on something radically different (except maybe Polo, but that's because this fragrance is aimed at owners of the original - and still excellent - Polo). Would a designer label put out something like Hinoki, Attar, or L'Air DDM? I highly doubt it, because too many people wouldn't buy something so unique.

    So while the 'designer v. niche' labels are superficial in one sense - of course a designer fragrance can be as good as a niche fragrance - there is some truth underpinning the distinction.

  24. #24

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Thanks everyone for such terrific responses. I think the terms of the debate in the last year or so have generally shifted away from facile dichotomies as is evidenced from the response to this thread. everso, it's clear there's still a lot of fight and passion in you yet. That's really good to see. I was worried there for a moment, but your post makes it clear that you and I are essentially on the same page.

    Ruggles, your interests are rather unpredictable and complex, so I need to think about recommending some things for you. PM me and well do a consultation. No, seriously, I'd like to chat with you and a million other wonderful Basenoters who have PM'd me over the last few months and whose PMs I have yet to return--though I will--because life keeps getting in the way.

    Pollux, a little suspense never hurt anyone. I will be reviewing the fragrances I talked about, so if you're really interested, look out for those reviews.

    SculptureOfSoul, as always your consider, informed perspective is valued. The point about evaluating fragrances on their own terms is a really important one. If we do that, we tend to be more informative, and this allows others to make up their own mind with all the information at hand.

    bbBD along the same lines, thanks for your intelligent comments.

    Renato's point about wearability is a crucial one. I tend to find the same thing true as he does.

    Thanks zztopp for posting a discussion that I had forgotten about and that is very germane to this one.

    Quote Originally Posted by knightowl View Post
    I've found the ratio of uninspiring fragrances between designer and niche to be about equal.
    Don't you love knightowl's succintness. Probably the truest thing said in the thread.

    Cheers everyone. I need to stop posting and do some "work work" that like my PMs has backlogged and is now in a critical state.

    scentemental
    Last edited by scentemental; 30th November 2008 at 03:15 PM.

  25. #25

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Sometime ago it dawned on me that Designer scents were indeed "designed" but designed to Sell.

    Some of the worst, I feel, are actually designed from the Bottle with designed scent to follow sometime down the road after innumerable marketing meetings focused on what other brands are hot-sellers. After the target hot-seller components are dissected & analyzed the chem lab is then given it's "goal". After a few iterations, a couple of thousand gallons is cooked up & innumerable bottles filled.

    Even worse are the "Celebrity" scents. Can hardly even imagine the corporate process those go thru after a "Celebrity" name has been "procured".

    I threw out or gave away my little designer collection and have concentrated on building a library from the offerings of actual perfumiers. If they are Not Popular, so much the better.

    I occasionally will comment on a necktie at work with : "Wow, nice tie", commencing to
    "feel it", then flipping it over to check out the label, ending with: "and Cheap too". Same
    joke with designer scents also. I'm really a basically a nice guy but sometimes just can't help myself.

  26. #26

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Judging by the dents made to my pocketbook last year, I would have a hard time agreeing about a diminished interest in designer fragrances - although niche scents have also made their share of dents.

    I tend to go through phases in my 'scent interest evolution'. My interest in a fragrance house is not limited to what has been produced in the last couple years. On a recent trip to Austria, where I bought Forest at the Knize store in downtown Vienna (), I also bought Guerlain's Mouchoir de Monsieur (downtown Vienna) and Guerlain Homme (airport taxfree). I have a current 'obsession' with Parfumerie Generale and am rather fascinated with the work of Marc Buxton & Bertrand Duchaufour and just yesterday and the local equivalent of Sephora, I did a revealing comparison of Guerlain's L'Instant Pour Homme edt & edp. The evolution continues....

  27. #27

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I read your message with interest - in fact, this reminded me of a similar notice on a contemporary arts forum I am part of. The upshot was that we recommended works that were non-professional/designer and far less expensive but still great ! Perhaps we can do this with fragrances ? To start off, one of mine would be (believe it or not) Gillette Wild Rain ...... yes honestly ! What does anyone else recommend ???

  28. #28

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Okay, for those who can't wait for the $11 (100 ml bottle) frag that's great, I'll give you one: Samba Heat for men. Here are the notes:

    Top notes are green tea, gera & pomelio juice.

    Heart notes are thyme, fir balsam, cypress, & cinnamon bark.

    Base notes are guaiacum wood & amber.

    However, it's well blended, so those who want clearly articulated notes might not like it.
    Last edited by Bigsly; 30th November 2008 at 06:57 PM.

  29. #29

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I tend to agree with Knight Owl's post.
    I fing 3/4 scents niche/designer un-interesting.

    "Green relish" note aside, Calvin Klein Man is a recent(07) designer scent that would get more props were it not designer. Development, and a surprisingly pleasant drydown. And Hermes and Guerlain (both designer) consistently churn out fairly good new scents, male and female. As for Azzaro/Boss/Armani/etc., the bases are just all too generic, and the tops have nothing that "seems natural" mixed with the sunthetics. I might agree that the degree to which they are un-interesting is greater in some lower-end designer scents, but at least they're not guilty of some outright rancid strangeness of many niche scents.

    So all totalled up I'd say it's equal.

  30. #30

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by DULLAH View Post
    I tend to agree with Knight Owl's post.
    I fing 3/4 scents niche/designer un-interesting.

    "Green relish" note aside, Calvin Klein Man is a recent(07) designer scent that would get more props were it not designer. Development, and a surprisingly pleasant drydown. And Hermes and Guerlain (both designer) consistently churn out fairly good new scents, male and female. As for Azzaro/Boss/Armani/etc., the bases are just all too generic, and the tops have nothing that "seems natural" mixed with the sunthetics. I might agree that the degree to which they are un-interesting is greater in some lower-end designer scents, but at least they're not guilty of some outright rancid strangeness of many niche scents.

    So all totalled up I'd say it's equal.
    I wouldn't group Guerlain as "designer." What do they design? Fragrance and skincare. They don't use fragrance to advertise their line since THAT is their line. Mass market? Sure. Designer? Not really.

    - Al

  31. #31

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    but it could have just as easily been something of a flop the way D&G By seems to have been. Fragrance collectors like By, but the public didn't.
    Not only is By my favorite fragrance. It's also my most complimented fragrance. Everyone seems to love it. It's a true masterpiece in my eyes, it's what got me REALLY interested in fragrances. I don't think it was a flop, maybe you say this because it's discontinued, but in my eyes it's one of the most appreciated scents, on Basenotes, but also by lots and lots of people who are not into fragrances like us. A crowd pleaser in the most positive meaning of the word.

    On topic. When I try fragrances in places similar to Sephoras, I notice that, next to the fragrances I know I love, about 90% of the designerfrags I try is something I won't spend my money on. I'm very new to the world of niche, yet I think that if i entered a nicheshop, it would be the same, about 90% of the fragrances would not be something I would spend my money on. I think most of us BN'er are picky like that.
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  32. #32

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruggles View Post
    As a rule, designer scents appeal to me if they're from the pre-90's.
    I'm a firm believer that Aqua di Gio, the "non-fragrance lovers" aquatics and an over-exploitation of tea based scents, are perhaps the earmarks of the degradation of the "designer fragrance" concept. The "I hate Fragrance" 90's scents seem to have won. I'm not a big minimalist fan, I think if a new fragrance is worth doing, it needs to be somewhat complicated.
    To name a few specific people, Tom Ford has done some genuinely interesting things at Estee Lauder, Gucci and YSL, as has the brilliant Maurice Roucel at, Gucci, Karan, Lalique, Missoni and Hermes. When it comes to Ellena, I'm not sure if he's part of the problem or the brilliant future. Gaultier and Mugler, as designer house continue to challenge. And yes, Dior has the infamous Homme. But what has Givenchy, Chanel or YSL released in the last years that broke any new ground.
    Overall, the "designer" world is getting closer to being dead; most of the new stuff that arrives daily should be considered "drug store" quality; the equivalent of schlock of the gems Jade East and Hai Karate.
    But, do you really think niche houses are the answer? There's a lot of very high priced Italian filler available at Luckyscent these days.
    What I'm liking is how a traditional fragrance house like Guerlain is dealing with this. Maybe LVMH should do a hostile take over of Caron and get things back on track with them.
    Very insightful reading and some observations that I share as well. Well said, Ruggles! I personally think that Lalique Lion, by Roucel, is one of the best designer fragrances ever..
    Last edited by Noalick; 30th November 2008 at 10:21 PM.
    "- Harry, I have no idea where this will lead us, but I have a definite feeling it will be a place both wonderful and strange."

  33. #33

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Niche vs. Mainstream.
    Natural vs. Synthetic.
    Cheap vs. Expensive.

    Wouldn't it be awesome if we could have categorical limitations that allow us to beforehand separate good from bad? Unfortunately, it does not work that way, at least not for me. I find many Niche and all-natural houses to be more pretentious than good. Meanwhile, most designer houses are interested on money more than artistry, elegance or style.
    Perhaps anxiety and hunger for something innovative has made me criticise Niche or designer brands in the past, but now I understand that good releases take time. I do think, however, that if I am looking for a particular genre or note sometimes it is slightly better to look in one category or another.
    Niche: Ambers, incense, Aoud, Roses for Men, antiperfumes, Cinnamon, etc,
    Designer: Citrus, florals for men, Aquatics, Leather (especially vintage), Chypres (v), Tobacco, green fragrances, fruity, etc.
    Shameless Plug: Sales thread with Roses Musk, Rose Poivree, and others.
    Looking for lot of samples of female fragrances.

  34. #34

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Recent releases like Prada's Infusion d' Homme and Armani Diamonds for Men are a testament of how wonderful designer fragrances can be. These are legends in the making.

  35. #35

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    brianyroy, that's exactly my point - By was a commercial flop but an excellent fragrance. That's what I meant by 'flop' - I'm sorry if that wasn't clear. Obviously if it had been a commercial success it would still be produced, because big houses will keep producing whatever generates revenue.

    Guerlain is impossible to define. It's just Guerlain. It's definitely not a designer label, but it's a large enough entity, with large enough distribution, to not be a niche house either. They have some lines that are mass-marketed (I see Shalimar at every drug strore), and others that are very niche, like the 'les parisiennes'. You can't really define by what else a label produces... don't forget that CdG is a high-end clothing label.

  36. #36

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by knightowl View Post
    Recent releases like Prada's Infusion d' Homme and Armani Diamonds for Men are a testament of how wonderful designer fragrances can be. These are legends in the making.
    to be honest, those are exactly the kind of dreary, nauseating scents which make me detest designer scents even more these days! I've got some Infusion D'Homme on my wrist right now from a sample...and it is awful.

    no offense, of course
    Last edited by everso; 1st December 2008 at 02:29 AM.

  37. #37

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by everso View Post
    to be honest, those are exactly the kind of dreary, nauseating scents which make me detest designer scents even more these days! I've got some Infusion D'Homme on my wrist right now from a sample...and it is awful.

    no offense, of course

    I am going to have to agree with my good friend knightowl here.

    For a self-professed admirer of heavy scents and someone who is particularly into leather scents, perhaps your palette and your appreciation for lighter non leather scents is not quite developed yet. After all, how long have you really been into scents seriously? Nine months! If you don't want to come across as somewhat opinionated, and a little uninformed, you might go a little easy on trashing what other people like and admire; otherwise, people are just going to stop listening and reading what you have to say. No offense of course ; just a little friendly advice.

    Daniela Andrier, perfumer of Iris d'Homme and of many of the new fragrances of the Prada line, is one of the most talented and accomplished perfumers around. She's someone to watch given she only in her 40s. Her collaboration with Prada owner Muccia Prada and their joint commitment to serious perfumery and the use of high quality ingredients in the Prada line is to be admired, more so since this commitment extends to packaging and to making available a wide range of sizes and ancillary products at very fair prices compared to the ridiculous and insultingly inflated prices of most niche lines, not to mention their shoddy packaging. Compare a Profumum box with a Prada Infusion d'Homme box, and you'll see what I mean. Furthermore, a 100ml bottle of Profumum costs $240.00; a 200ml bottle of Prada Infusion d'Homme cost $110.00. Along these line and for the quality they represent, Prada products are very much like Chanel products, fragrances that use quality ingredients and represent value for money and have high artistic merit. All of Andrier's Prada fragrances are very well crafted and employ quality ingredients that put some niche fragrances to shame.

    I don't particularly find Prada Infusion d'Homme to my liking--I actually prefer Prada Amber Pour Homme--so I have no problem with your not liking Infusion d'Homme, but you're seriously misinformed though about dumping it with all the rest of the designer pap out there.

    scentemental
    Last edited by scentemental; 1st December 2008 at 03:18 AM.

  38. #38

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by scentemental View Post
    After all, how long have you really been into scents seriously? Nine months! If you don't want to come across as somewhat opinionated, and a little uninformed, you might go a little easy on trashing what other people like and admire; otherwise, people are just going to stop listening and reading what you have to say. No offense of course ; just a little friendly advice.

    I don't particularly find Prada Infusion d'Homme to my liking--I actually prefer Prada Amber Pour Homme--but I don't see why you need to trash something you don't or can't like. You're misinformed though about dumping it with all the rest of the designer pap out there.

    scentemental
    it's a synthetic mess of a scent. i'm just stating my opinion....if someone doesn't want to 'listen" or "read" what i have to say....i'm not hoping the world follows my opinion...i just want them to know it exists.

    he stated what he likes about designer scents and 2 specific scents which make the case for them....when in fact, those 2 scents are the perfect examples of why i posted this thread in the first place! those are the types of scents which i find bland and uninspiring. i don't think an 'expertise' in fragrances is required to understand the grand complexity and charm of Prada D'Infusion....(note my sarcasm )

    of course i am open to trying them...which is why i have the stuff on my arm at the moment...unfortunately.

    cheers!
    Last edited by everso; 1st December 2008 at 03:13 AM.

  39. #39

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by everso View Post
    it's a synthetic mess of a scent. i'm just stating my opinion....if someone doesn't want to 'listen" or "read" what i have to say....i'm not hoping the world follows my opinion...i just want them to know it exists.

    he stated what he likes about designer scents and 2 specific scents which make the case for them....when in fact, those 2 scents are the perfect examples of why i posted this thread in the first place! those are the types of scents which i find bland and uninspiring. i don't think an 'expertise' in fragrances is required to understand the grand complexity and charm of Prada D'Infusion....(note my sarcasm )

    of course i am open to trying them...which is why i have the stuff on my arm at the moment...unfortunately.

    cheers!
    Your "opinion" is worth nothing if in fact Prada Infusion d'Homme isn't a synthetic mess, which it isn't, but, seriously, don't get yourself bent out of shape. You won't be hearing from me again. Why do you need interlocutors on this board when you have your "opinions." I am sorry I wasted your time and mine.

    scentemental
    Last edited by scentemental; 1st December 2008 at 05:08 AM.

  40. #40

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by irish View Post
    Niche: Ambers, incense, Aoud, Roses for Men, antiperfumes, Cinnamon, etc,
    Designer: Citrus, florals for men, Aquatics, Leather (especially vintage), Chypres (v), Tobacco, green fragrances, fruity, etc.
    That's a nice categorization, irish. Or at least, that's been my experience as well. The designer scents that I *do* like are indeed citruses and leathers. And definitely the niche fragrances I like are mostly ambers, incenses, and a different kind of rose than can be found in mainstream fragrances. I wonder if with time, I'll find some that disprove this categorization.

  41. #41

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by everso View Post
    There is a huge lack of leather scents being made for designer companies, which REALLY turns me off to them...and in general, there is a lack of experimentation.
    It's been written that leather based offerings are quite often the weakest sellers in company's line-ups. That is, unless you're Knize Ten. I find Prada to be a rather distinct designer house, too.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 1st December 2008 at 04:26 AM.

  42. #42

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Hey now.... everyone's entitled to their opinions, no need to for anyone to take anything personally. All things considered, this has been one of the better threads on the topic.

    IMHO, Infusion d'Homme is one of the only designer fragrances released this year worth buying (Polo Modern Reserve being the other), but if you don't like iris fragrances, you aren't going to like either Prada Infusion. With so many of the other designer offerings being so synthetic smelling, it may be easy to just lump Infusion in with those if you didn't know specifically otherwise. I'm also a fan of Prada's bath products, and I thought it was neat they went old-school and offered bar soap of Infusion, so I bought a set. I also love Prada Amber, so obviously I need to look more into Daniela Andrier's works. I happen to think Armani Diamonds is very weak - pleasant but weak - as is Pi Neo and various other recent offerings. I could barely detect Davidoff Adventure with two sprays on my arm.

    Something no one has mentioned is that the current proliferation of niche houses is a good thing - there's always something new to discover. I've recently been sampling through all the offerings by Sonoma Scent Studio and Jalaine Fragrances (which are all pure oils), and I've been very impressed. There's tons of little houses out there I haven't discovered yet, which means I still have plenty of exploring to do before I get jaded or bored (if ever).

  43. #43

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    The only question in my mind is, "Does it smell good?" Turin quoted a perfumer who once said, "Above all, it must smell good." Labels (designer/niche, synthetic/natural) don't really mean much to me. My beef with niche frags is their prohibitive/inflated price and limited distribution which makes it hard to try out. In my mind, it was a bad year for all men's fragrances niche included. Most of my purchases this year were frags released years ago including a few designer frags such as Versace Black Jeans & Lauder for Men that have fallen out of favor.
    "I exist for myself, and for those to whom my unquenchable thirst for freedom gives everything, but also for everyone, since insofar as I am able to love - I love everyone. Of noble hearts, I am the noblest - and the most generous of those that yearn to give love in return. - I am a human being, I love death and I love life."

    Egon Schiele - Self-Potrait


    My classics: Dior Homme EdT, YSL Rive Gauche PH, Helmut Lang Cuiron, L'Occitane Neroli (vintage), Davidoff Zino, L'Occitane Eau des Baux

    http://www.basenotes.net/wardrobe/2976

  44. #44

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by manicboy View Post
    including a few designer frags such as Versace Black Jeans
    Mmm. . . there's *one* designer scent that I really like! And no headaches too!

  45. #45

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by manicboy View Post
    Turin quoted a perfumer who once said, "Above all, it must smell good." Labels (designer/niche, synthetic/natural) don't really mean much to me.
    he did eh really?

  46. #46

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by bbBD View Post
    Hey now.... everyone's entitled to their opinions, no need to for anyone to take anything personally.
    Exactly.


    PVC and Leather. A Chain and a feather




  47. #47

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I remember before I got into perfume about a year ago, I loved to wear Marc Jacobs Daisy and thought it was a masterpiece, now I can't stand the stuff

  48. #48

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    well I am not intrested in the new designers launches anymore, BUT I am still loyal to the 70's, 80's & 90's creations, to me they are niche according to the industry standard now days.

  49. #49

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    amazing that 6 months ago....i was praising (and wearing) lots of designer scents.....but lately, aside from a few designer scents that i am praising (Kiton Black, Porsche Design Essence, Varvatos Vintage, Eau Sauvage Cuir Fraicheur, Rive Gauche, Paco Rabanne)-----i can't really get myself to be interested in any designer scents. They're just not creative enough. They're just not 'deep' enough to enjoy as scents, i get tired of them after a couple testings.



    There is a huge lack of leather scents being made for designer companies, which REALLY turns me off to them...and in general, there is a lack of experimentation.

    i never wanted to be a niche whore....but it seems i'm heading in that direction these days. The sight of Sephora has just started to annoy me now.

    anyone else falling into the trap of niche elitism? i can't help it...but i am for sure.
    What is it that you expect from designerhouses? Sounds to me that you're hoping for an 80 's revival. Or at least a "before the 90's revival".What would happen if you could step into the Sephora of 1985? I dislike most of the 80's classics or even non-classics. Like some of you dislike the current or the 90's releases. I'm not saying I'm impressed with stuff like Givenchy Play or Ed Hardy or other current designer releases, hell like I said 90% of the "Sephora collection" is not bottleworthy imo. Every era has his classics, and if would have to choose between the classics of the 80's, and what's goin to be considered classics of the 00's in about twenty years, I would definately prefer the second. However I agree that current releases could use more leather and maybe tobacco, and that there's a lot of boring stuff out there. I wish you could smell my Yanbal OHM, it's a South American designer frag, so most of you will never get to test it. It's a concoction of sandalwood, citrus, lots of leather and tobacco, grapefruit, salvia, pepper and lavender. At first I disliked it as being similar to a 80 's powerhouse. Now I really appreciate it, and would love to know the opinions of fellow (more experienced) Basenoters. I have to admit I'm a strange one, I love leather and tobacco, but I dislike it the way they used it in the 80's.

    brianyroy, that's exactly my point - By was a commercial flop but an excellent fragrance. That's what I meant by 'flop' - I'm sorry if that wasn't clear. Obviously if it had been a commercial success it would still be produced, because big houses will keep producing whatever generates revenue.
    This is really weird. A frag almost everyone loves being a commercial flop. I read an old topic from 2003 on a Dutch women's forum a while ago, called : "Which scent do you love on man" Lot's of Le Male and ADG votes, but also lots of votes for "D&G zebra" like they called it. I cannot believe that BY sold less than D&G Masculine? Yet, if it wasn't discontinued and if it sold like one of my other favorites, Armani Code, I would probably not use it, like I don't use Armani Code, or D&G pour homme anymore even if they are wonderful fragrances. I wish they were some unknown niches. I'm going to do some research on why they discontinued it.
    Last edited by brianroy; 1st December 2008 at 11:58 AM.
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  50. #50
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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by tariq View Post
    well I am not intrested in the new designers launches anymore, BUT I am still loyal to the 70's, 80's & 90's creations, to me they are niche according to the industry standard now days.

    "They are niche according to the industry standards now" is quite possibly true pertaining to a handful of scents I am fond of from the past.

    I still try new juice however and with an open mind since the classics I like now were at one time were dismissed by wearers of their day. They became bigger than life once discontinued. I do like the heavier frags and since the market is currently targeted at a newer generation with different tastes than mine, I have found a few niche fragrances that supplement my need for juice that has longevity,projection, is different and smells downright awesome.

  51. #51

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by brianroy View Post
    What is it that you expect from designerhouses? Sounds to me that you're hoping for an 80 's revival. Or at least a "before the 90's revival".What would happen if you could step into the Sephora of 1985? I dislike most of the 80's classics or even non-classics. Like some of you dislike the current or the 90's releases. I'm not saying I'm impressed with stuff like Givenchy Play or Ed Hardy or other current designer releases, hell like I said 90% of the "Sephora collection" is not bottleworthy imo. Every era has his classics, and if would have to choose between the classics of the 80's, and what's goin to be considered classics of the 00's in about twenty years, I would definately prefer the second. However I agree that current releases could use more leather and maybe tobacco, and that there's a lot of boring stuff out there. I wish you could smell my Yanbal OHM, it's a South American designer frag, so most of you will never get to test it. It's a concoction of sandalwood, citrus, lots of leather and tobacco, grapefruit, salvia, pepper and lavender. At first I disliked it as being similar to a 80 's powerhouse. Now I really appreciate it, and would love to know the opinions of fellow (more experienced) Basenoters. I have to admit I'm a strange one, I love leather and tobacco, but I dislike it the way they used it in the 80's.
    i'm pretty much with you. i'm not a fan of 80s scents in general actually....including leather scents. i think they were poor imitations of leather scents from the 50s, 60s, and 70s. They lacked identity....but I AM still exploring them, to find one of those 'hidden gems' that everyone's always talking about.

    my point is that Sephora sticks with the MOST mainstream designer fragrances. They stick to the ones they can sell....and for that reason alone, i've become tired of those fragrances. They are arguably the 'safest' and most 'middle of the road' scents-----as they spark the least amount of surprise, controversy, and creativity for the sake of creativity.

    If sephora started stocking some of the outside-the-box scents, which i don't feel they ever will---i'd likely gain alot of respect.
    Last edited by everso; 1st December 2008 at 12:38 PM.

  52. #52

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by everso View Post
    my point is that Sephora sticks with the MOST mainstream designer fragrances. They stick to the ones they can sell....and for that reason alone, i've become tired of those fragrances. They are arguably the 'safest' and most 'middle of the road' scents-----as they spark the least amount of surprise, controversy, and creativity for the sake of creativity.
    My problem with Sephora is that every time I go, it's the same 25 fragrances.

  53. #53

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruggles View Post
    My problem with Sephora is that every time I go, it's the same 25 fragrances.
    exactly! it's as if they believe that men (or women who are buying these for men) have no ability to adventure when it comes to fragrances......they are creating the middle-of-the-road class of fragrance buyers.

    i'm quite certain there is a good percentage of men who believe that Sephora represents THE cutting edge in fragrance shops....they probably use it as their single source for purchases. I think Sephora should at least progress its range...to appeal to people such as ones found on this forum----even though we represent a small % of the population.....it would bring a lot more people into the 'know' about the REAL cutting edge....

  54. #54

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by everso View Post
    exactly! it's as if they believe that men (or women who are buying these for men) have no ability to adventure when it comes to fragrances......they are creating the middle-of-the-road class of fragrance buyers.

    i'm quite certain there is a good percentage of men who believe that Sephora represents THE cutting edge in fragrance shops....they probably use it as their single source for purchases. I think Sephora should at least progress its range...to appeal to people such as ones found on this forum----even though we represent a small % of the population.....it would bring a lot more people into the 'know' about the REAL cutting edge....
    Sephora was cool when it first opened in the US. It's hard to believe that they once carried Carons and Commes des Garcons. I think they were bleeding money and re-vamped the line-up.
    Their fragrance areas are shrinking as the make-up and bath and body offerings eat up more real-estate.
    If you ever get a chance to go to their Paris shop on the Champs Elysee, you will see an entirely different reality. Lutens, Jules, A Different Company, Institut Tres Bien, etc.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 1st December 2008 at 01:51 PM.

  55. #55

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    I have not read all of the posts above so forgive me if I am retreading over discussed topics. I am not going to sugar-coat this, I agree with everso. I have fully and completely fallen out of grace with designer offerings. Before I get jumped on, though, I am not speaking about ALL designer scents, I am talking about the typical department store designer scent that are constantly being shoved down our throats. I have fully emersed myself in the niche world now and now I have come to expect a certain level of quality from my frags. As my nose has become more and more experienced I realise the lack of quality present in so many of the standard fare and I don't like it. I also understand that niche is not synonymous with greatness, for every 20 niche frags I test I'd say I find 2 worth of purchase, but unlike the designer scents it isn't, for the most part, due to a lack of originality of quality, moreso because I find it too odd or unwearable. The same ratio can most likely be applied to the designer side but while 18 niche scents out of 20 are unwearable, 18 designer scents nauseatingly synthetic, boring wastes of perfectly good glass. I still continue to test every new scent I can get my hands on, but my money will be spent in the world of niche and/or less known/forgotten designer gems. The current crop of designer releases are boring, plain and simple, for every Terre d Hermes, there are a million and one Pi Neos. Just my .02

  56. #56

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by scentemental View Post
    Your "opinion" is worth nothing if in fact Prada Infusion d'Homme isn't a synthetic mess, which it isn't, but, seriously, don't get yourself bent out of shape. You won't be hearing from me again. Why do you need interlocutors on this board when you have your "opinions." I am sorry I wasted your time and mine.

    scentemental
    Scentemental, I am not bashing Infusion in the slightest, in fact I have tried to like it numerous times. I just had a question maybe you could answer. I am not sure if it is the Iris or what it is but there is a common note in both Infusion and Eau de Cartier Concentree, oddly enough, that I can only describe as smelling like cardboard or some sort of paper, it is a very odd slightly powdery note that sort of muddles all the other notes together. Unfortunately I can't describe it any better and if it is infact iris, then it may just not work on my skin, because it really smells awful in both of those scents.

  57. #57
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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by manicboy View Post
    ... Most of my purchases this year were frags released years ago including a few designer frags such as Versace Black Jeans & Lauder for Men that have fallen out of favor.
    Sorry this is off topic, but, I read that Lauder has some affinity to Dior's Jules... to what an extent?

  58. #58

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruggles View Post
    Sephora was cool when it first opened in the US. It's hard to believe that they once carried Carons and Commes des Garcons. I think they were bleeding money and re-vamped the line-up.
    really? WOW. i can't even imagine that...

    i did know, however, that before Helmut Lang's Cuiron was discontinued, Sephora had a HUGE sale on remaining stock.....which is why i was always heading over there when i first got really into this hobby....to see if i could score another fragrance as special as that....unfortunately, the only thing close to being remotely interesting i've ever purchased from there has been Mat:Men.

  59. #59

    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    You lucky folks... try living here in Fort Wayne. The nearest Sephora is 80 miles away, in South Bend! (Though I do hear that we may be getting one next year.)

    What they sell at Sephora is good compared to the stuff we have. You can't get Tom Ford, Narciso Rodriguez (his or hers), any Cartier scent, or Dior Homme locally (but you can get Dior Homme Sport... figures). It's an olfactory mess here... all we have are Macy's (of course), Perfumania, Von Maur (which is decent), and Ulta. And if you want niche scents, you have to drive two hours down to Saks Fifth Avenue in Indianapolis... but that isn't what bothers me. What bothers me is that the second-biggest city in Indiana is a designer fragrance backwater.
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    2) New York - Nicolai
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  60. #60

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    Default Re: diminished interest in designer scents....

    This type of thread is always fun to read and, Scentemental, it's great to see you back around the boards, my friend!

    I join with those who do not recognize a designer:niche dichotomy. Sure, I'm aware of the terms and the associated marketing that drive each, but I don't cling to any of that. I have been on a long quest to try anything and everything, and judge each on its own merits.

    I unequivocally hold out my greatest appreciation for unusual, groundbreaking scents, and it is my experience that more often than not these have turned out to be so-called "designer" scents and, as Ruggles noted, those generally produced some years ago. I've sampled large numbers of "new" niche scents in the past two years, and it makes sense to read Bigsly paraphrase Turin in noting that they (niche scents) largely consist of bases(notes); even if some of them can be quite bewitching (Lutens' Ambre Sultan or Keiko Mecheri's Loukhoum, for example).

    In support of my contention, to recent excellent releases, Dior Homme and Terre d'Hermes (though it should be noted that Terre was long-preceded by the unusual and excellent Memoire d'Homme), I add each of the following to my list of most-appreciated fragrances that I still wear today:

    Ricci's Signoricci
    Monsieur Rochas
    Nino Cerruti Pour Homme (original)
    Patou Pour Homme
    Hermes Equipage
    Zino Davidoff
    Spazio Krizia Uomo
    Romeo Gigli per Uomo and,
    Cartier's L'Essence de Must de Cartier

    Wicozani

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