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  1. #31

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by Larimar View Post
    Hermèssence - Osmanthe Yunnan
    I was eager to try this since Luca Turin rated it a 5 star fragrance. I do have a 5 % osmanthus solution at home and honestly, I could only for a short while detect a faint idea of osmanthus in this. A fresh, fruity opening that I am not even tempted to think about its notes. After 15 minutes Osmanthe Yunnan is a mere skin scent. I have come to the conclusion that Jean-Claude Ellena is not my parfumeur at all, sorry, 'eau-de-toiletteur'. Are you willing to pay 170 Euros for 100 ml of a watery vanishing Eau de Toilette Hermèssence fragrance like this?
    I couldn't have put it more succinctly. Not only do I have some 5% osmanthus, but also grow 2 varieties. Osmanthe Yunnan is a weak disappointment.
    Don a wig of larks and fly!

  2. #32
    volley2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    My samples have arrived. Please bear in mind that I am still new to the perfume world. =)

    Musc Ravageur - this to me smells like MKK + Shalimar. The top note is similar to MKK but MR
    is cleaner which makes it more wearable. The dry down has similarities with Shalimar.
    Almost got this blind buy but good thing I tried a sample first. It's nice but
    I wouldn't get a full bottle.

    Vetiver Oriental by Serge Lutens - vetiver + tobacco + leather with a touch of candy on top
    (maybe that's the chocolate i'm smelling). Slightly medicinal vetiver on top.
    But really nice!

    Jicky EDC - I laughed (not in a judging way) when I first smelled Jicky.
    The top note smells poo or bad breath or something. I guess that's the civet talking.
    After 15 minutes the funny top note disappears in to a mellow lavender. The dry down
    is actually very good. Ironic enough, it starts off dirty but ends very clean like a hotel soap.

    Borneo 1834 - bitter cocoa at the beginning. This one shares that smell of dirth from the earth of patchouli
    like with Coromandel. The camphor is there but just very little. A lot of people compare this
    with Coromandel because of the chocolate and patchouli aspect of both frags but I would
    still go for Coromandel. Borneo is like a very woody version of Coromandel. By the way
    in terms of smell, they are not the same.

    Furmerie Turque - has a similar opening with Shalimar, that burnt vanillic quality. The honey here is
    quite stong. This smells very exotic. Very oriental. Interesting!

    Bois de Violette - this one smells so gorgeous! It's very complex that all notes are well balanced. The longer
    it cooks on my skin, the stronger it smells. I love it!

    Gris Clair - this is a very interesting lavender scent. It's not the lavender that you smell when you go to a
    spa. It's like smelling the lavender plant itself . I can't stop sniffing my hand! A winner for me.

    Idole by Lubin - very boosy! it's very hard to describe this one. rum, smoke, leather, sugar cane are quite
    predominant. It sounds odd but it smells really good! I really like this one. Very interesting!
    Wishlist!

    Apres L'ondee - top not is very floral. And then it dries down to a powdery floral. Really pleasant and
    gorgeous. As Turin said in his book, one of the 20 greatest perfume of all time.

    Out of all these samples, I enjoyed very much Vetiver Oriental, Bois De Violette, Gris Clair, Idole and Apres L'ondee. Where can I get these 5? hahahaha. Someday they will be part of my wardrobe.
    Last edited by volley2; 16th August 2010 at 02:22 PM.

  3. #33

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Hi volley2,
    Nice collection of samples! Have you given Musc Ravageur a full wearing? I wasn't impressed first either, but when I gave it a full wearing and spent the whole day walking around in Vienna I thought "Boy, it must be me... I smell so damn good!"
    With regard to Coromandel and Borneo 1834 - you might want to consider a sample of Noir Patchouli by Histoires de Parfums, if you don't know it by now. This would be my pick (and will be - it's on my to-buy list) - a bit more daring and I get quite some dark rose out of the rose-patchouli combo, which I absolutely like.
    Just my two thoughts.

  4. #34
    volley2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Hi Larimar,
    Nope I did not give it a full wear. Oopps. hihi =) Thank you for the tip. Will try it again. I have a decent amount of samples of those frags.

    I am in Shanghai, not very good choices here believe me. I'll have to find ways to get that Noir Patchouli. But I really do love Coromandel. Let's see. =)

  5. #35

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by volley2 View Post
    Out of all these samples, I enjoyed very much Vetiver Oriental, Bois De Violette, Gris Clair, Idole and Apres L'ondee. Where can I get these 5? hahahaha. Someday they will be part of my wardrobe.
    Let me know when you decide to make that trip to HK - Gris Clair & Apres L'Ondee are both at Harvey Nicks.

    Idole is really something isn't it?

  6. #36
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Mr. Reasonable,

    My friend is going to HK this weekend. He's getting me the bottle of Jub XXV that I have reserved. And he is going to get some bottles for himself as well. Can you actually get Idole in HK? Where?

  7. #37
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Thanks for adding to the thread, Volley2. You really got some deep-end niche there. I still can't quite love Musc Ravageur, but I respect it. That being said, the couple of times I've test-worn it, I've never failed to get positive comments from random people. There's something about it that women just think is sexy. I can't explain it.

    And I've never even been able to bring myself to apply Jicky to my skin, thanks to that upfront poo smell, so cheers to you for sticking it out!

    Catching up, a lazy Saturday home alone called for something I wouldn’t wear to work, so I decided on Jean Patou 1000.



    My sample actually turned out to be a vintage carded EDT sample, copyright 1989 (thanks Rei Rein!). That being said, the oakmoss bans went into effect in 1990, so I’d assume that the 1989 release was actually the less-oakmoss reformulation and not the true vintage. But the markings on it say that it’s still owned by Patou Parfums, so at least it’s before Proctor & Gamble got a hold of it and dumbed it down…

    1000 is very much a classic feminine chypre, built around those mixed “white floral” notes. Theoretically, it features osmanthus, but any osmanthus in there is buried within the standard rose/ylang/muguet “floral accord”, which is, in turn, buried beneath a sort of shellac-smelling aldehyde and tons of powder.

    What sets 1000 apart from other powdery classic florals seems to be its darkness. There’s a discernable clary sage note in there, which goes a long way to give a green-hued moodiness to the whole proceedings. This green hue continues into the base, via galbanum and the chypre base.

    The first half an hour or so of 1000 was pure bliss. The interplay between the aldehydic flowers and the sage was just beautiful. Sadly, once the powder took over, it pretty much lost me. The chypre base was pleasant, as they usually are, but it wasn’t enough to win me back, but I don’t have a high tolerance for powdery old-school classics. However, if they’re what you like, 1000 should probably be required sniffing. I can totally see why this is so highly regarded.

    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
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  8. #38
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Yesterday, I wore Nasomatto Absinth.



    I'm even more confused now that I've given this a wearing than I was sniffing it on paper. At the store on paper, it smelled sweet and kind of like apples over some weird herbs. On my skin, the apple was gone, leaving a completely baffling mix of herbs and greens that was weirdly sweet and kind of creamy, but not in a vanilla way. I couldn't name a single familiar note. Reviews speak of vanilla and vetiver, but I'd be really disappointed if I tried Absinth looking for a vetiver scent or a gourmand. And I'd be even more disappointed if I tried it expecting something that smelled like absinth.

    All that being said, it smelled really good. My confusion kept my nose glued to my arm, hoping to figure out if I thought it was brilliant or just crazy.

    In the end, I decided it was too weird, largely thanks to a really strange off-note. You know how some ingredients (like cassis or rosemary or even grapefruit) can have a really dark, pissy undertone? Well, Absinth had something going on with that. And it had cumin - not the sweaty kind Ellena loves to use, but the kind that smells like fried food (I think it's orange cumin as opposed to black cumin, but I'm not sure). Well, the fried food cumin mixed with the dark pissy undertone and combined to form something that smelled like a mix of onions cooking and awful onion breath. While this onion note was buried underneath the pleasant weirdness that made up 95% of Absinth, it was one of those instances where, once I had smelled it, I just couldn't ignore it.

    But, for the more cumin-friendly people out there, especially those with a taste for the unusual (perhaps for fans of Lubin's Idole), I'd still suggest a sampling. Hopefully, the onion issue had more to do with my skin chemistry than the perfume itself. Or maybe, it'll be that little pinch of strangeness that others might find endearing...
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
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  9. #39
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Today, I'm wearing Diptyque Vetyverio.



    Wow. On paper at the store, Vetyverio smelled like a citrus-heavy, lightly soapy vetiver. On my skin, however, it's not very citric, not at all powdery, and actually quite rough.

    I'm tempted to say that I think there's actually more rose geranium in here than vetiver. The vetiver on top played up against the licorice-like aspect of the geranium (with possibly some birch tar in there too - I always think it smells like dark, smoky licorice), while the heart and base have focused more on geranium's rosey green leafy qualities (even going so far as to add some extra rose to play it up). The vetiver is always there, but it's the changing qualitites of the geranium note that carry Vetyverio, to my nose.

    Also of note, the whole affair is also unexpectedly sweet. I suppose this is the citrus (which only really stood out for the first few minutes before becoming more of a sweetener than a distinct smell).

    To compare and contrast with other vetivers, Vetyverio seems to be closest to Encre Noir, mostly because they both feature rose geranium, but Vetyverio has that sweetness, while EN is dark and smoky and way more woody. Also, EN is very polished, albeit in a vetiver sort of way (and I don't think vetiver can ever really be that polished), while Vetyverio is brash and almost amateurish (not in a bad way, but in the way that Nasomatto scents can be loud and rough, but still smell well-put-together). The vetiver in Vetyverio isn't the super-astringent, medicinal kind like Malle's. And it's not the traditional bright, Guerlain-esque 60's paired-with-lemon kind either. It's way darker and also way sweeter. It also has very little in common with Tom Ford's fresh Grey Vetiver - Vetyverio may be sweet, but it's not "fresh". I can't help but compare it to the new L'Artisan Vetiver, which is also sweet. But L'Artisan has that specific sweet red berry note, while Vetyverio is more of an undefined sweetness. And the L'Artisan has the feel of an expensive perfume put together by a really good nose, while Vetyverio smells more like a good-smelling happy accident than something obsessively planned, note by note for constant interesting change the way really fine perfumes are made.
    If that sounds like a put-down, it's not. Vetyverio is just a whole different animal - a macho, swagerring vetiver (kind of like MPG's) paired very roughly with sweet, dark, and floral elements that sound like they should suck some of the testosterone out if it, but they don't.

    So, if you like the idea of a sweet vetiver that's still got balls, I think Vetyverio might be the perfect match.
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  10. #40

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Honore Des Pres Love Coco , amazing strikingly different coconut , corriander and vanilla mash up . I love it

  11. #41
    rogalal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    A couple of nights ago, I wore Lanvin Arpège.

    Perhaps Arpège has been brutally reformulated into a shadow of its former glory. I don’t know, but the sample I got is kind of lame. From a purely functional standpoint, the topnotes were really loud, while the heart was very weak, and any basenotes were completely undetectable. The whole experience lasted around 2 hours and was so bafflingly incomplete that I reapplied and had the same thing repeat itself.

    The topnotes were that typical old-school feminine soapy floral smell, topped with very very powdery aldehydes. While this is pretty normal for scents of its age, most that I’ve tried have thrown in some iris or oriental notes or chypre ingredients to flesh it out. All Arpège did was add some really synthetic berries. So the overall effect was really loud powdery soap mixed with plasticky strawberry soda.

    The heart was more of that berry soda smell, mixed with some incoming sweet resins. Then, where I’d expect a chypre base, there was nothing.

    I’m not one to trash classics for smelling old-fashioned (hey, that’s part of their charm – If you don’t like old scents, why bother reviewing them), but I just don’t really get the appeal here. Other classics do what Arpège does much better. Meh. For something that does basically what Arpège was trying to do, but really well, the vintage Houbigant Quelques Fleurs l’Original I recently sampled was a hundred times better, with its grape/aldehyde mix.
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  12. #42
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Last night, just for fun, I wore some Frankincense essential oil, just to get a better idea of what it specifically smelled like.

    Apparently, frankincense comes from the Boswellia tree, either the Boswellia Sacre (if it’s from the middle east) or Boswellia Carterii (if it’s from Africa). My little vial is the Carterii kind.



    From what I read, if you make a cut in the tree, it oozes white sap, which crusts over into little rocks of frankincense, which are then somehow steam distilled to make frankincense essential oil, which is also called olibanum.


    So how does it smell? It smells awesome! It’s woody, very much the coniferous kind, with just a hint of that hamster cage cedar. In a way, it smells like walking into a room with a Christmas tree in it. But it’s not just woody – it’s also very sweet and creamy. VERY sweet and creamy. It’s not barren or dry or arid – instead it’s like if you could make a sweet custard pudding out of wood. It has a smoky aspect, too. Had I sniffed this blind, I would have thought it had Iso E Super in it as well as a pinch of pine. I’m actually quite shocked at the depth of character this has.

    Frankincense is clearly responsible for a lot of my favorite scents. It dominates Heeley’s Cardinal and is the foundation for most of those Duchoufour incense scents, from Avignon to Jubilation XXV.

    Worn alone, the frankincense oil actually got kind of cloying after a while. It smells great, but all that creamy sweetness needs to be tempered with something to make it palatable over the course of a day. It didn’t change with time, like some of the essential oils I’ve tried, which can sometimes have their own top and base notes. Instead, it had a long life – I can see how this forms a basenote in scents.
    Last edited by rogalal; 20th August 2010 at 12:06 AM.
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  13. #43
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Today I’m wearing Susanne Lang Tamboti Wood.

    Oddly, this is about 1/3 of L’Artisan’s Fou d’Absynthe. If you know FdA, imagine that sour green woody topnote, but minus the boozy alcohol smell. Throw in a tiny pinch of cedar to compliment the woody aspects (but not the full-on pine of FdA), and then leave the vetiver in plain sight (not obscured by the anise and weird funky herbs like it is in FdA), but made more green and sour by that topnote (which apparently is the tamboti wood that this is named after). That’s pretty much it.

    If I had smelled this before Fou d’Absynthe, I’d probably have really loved it, but as it is, I think FdA is a better-constructed, more detailed fragrance, so I’d just stick with that.

    That being said, if you like the woody aspect of FdA but not the boozy quality, or if the slightly sweaty undertones of FdA scare you, Tamboti Wood may make a good substitution. Oh, and it’s half the price, too, if that’s a deciding factor.



    Yesterday, I sampled another Susanne Lang, Red Ginger.

    I’ve been falling in love with a cheap Chinese ginger soap, so that had me in the mood for a nice ginger frag. Sadly, Red Ginger was a pretty big disappointment. It kicked off with bright ginger, as expected, paired with cassis-heavy red fruit. The ginger faded almost immediately and was replaced by (*insert disappointed sigh here*) super-sweet marshmallow vanilla. Doh. It’s a fruity floral. The immature little girl marshmallow kind.

    In Red Ginger’s defense, there was a pinch of powdery soap in there, too, making it a little less cloying, and it dried down to a weak chocolaty smell. But it would have made more sense as a Britney Spears scent or as some kind of Disney princess perfume than as a Luckyscent niche.

    Don’t bother.
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  14. #44

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    After resniffing Escentric 01 I realized that Lacoste Challenge, which I reviewed above, has a super huge dose of iso e super. I'd surmise that it's 50% or more IES (comparing it to scents like TdH, Encre Noire, Light Blue, etc that all have huge doses of IES) - so if anyone is a big IES fan (I don't mind it - the note that sometimes bothers me in TdH is something else) and is looking for a spicy lemon/ginger/frankincense scent that smells cheap in the way that IES smells cheap, Lacoste Challenge is worth a shot.

    While i do enjoy it, I'd rather wear Navegar for my fresh/sporty incense fix, or Jubilation 25 (womens) for a more rounded, elegant take on frankincense smoke.
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  15. #45
    Basenotes Junkie CX827's Avatar
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by rogalal View Post
    The top was a mix of iris with smooky cedar (the forest-smelling kind, not the hamster kind) and a blast of Iso E Super. It was remarkably dry. I've grown used to iris mixed with vanilla or creamy sandalwood, so I think of it as a creamy note, but Bois d'Iris left it completely dusty and dry. It meshed together with the cedar so efficiently that it ended up smelling almost like a whole new kind of super-dry blond wood.
    Have wore this one couple times and the first impression was matte and subtle from this fragrance. The salty note makes it a bit difference apart from other iris-woody combo offerings on the market i think. Like it but not love it, and sometimes it kind of remind me a bit of pencil shaving somehow.

  16. #46
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by CX827 View Post
    Have wore this one couple times and the first impression was matte and subtle from this fragrance. The salty note makes it a bit difference apart from other iris-woody combo offerings on the market i think. Like it but not love it, and sometimes it kind of remind me a bit of pencil shaving somehow.
    I missed the salty note, but then again, I always think it's my skin when something smells salty...

    Today, I’m wearing Sonoma Scent Studios Fireside Intense.



    This is a pretty obscure comparison, but the topnotes of Fireside Intense are remarkably similar to the smell of Diptyque’s legendary Fou de Bois candle.

    It’s basically a mix of oud and birch tar. According to the Sonoma Scent Studios website (which has a lot of interesting details about her scents), if you heavily dilute birch tar, you get the smell of smoky woods (as opposed to the leather smell you get with less dilution).

    As the day has gone by, the oud has faded down and gotten much more creamy, to the point where it smells almost like incense. According to the website, this is actually a trick done using a wood called Nagarmotha, which smells like smoky incense. The whole mix has gotten sweeter as the day has gone by, but without losing its smoky wood edge.

    It’s been 7 hours now and I’m still getting definite silage, but without the scent itself being overpowering or awkwardly loud.

    For comparison’s sake, this sort of smoky leathery wood scent is usually a favorite of mine. It kind of reminds me of By Kilian’s Pure Oud, but Pure Oud dries down to a green forest floor kind of smell after its smoky leather and oud, while Fireside Intense is quite sweet and creamy by the basenotes.

    I need to try this again when the weather cools down. In the summer heat, I’m enjoying the smell, but I feel a bit silly walking around smelling like this.
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  17. #47
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Yesterday evening, I wore Byredo Fantastic Man.



    This is a strange one. It’s almost as if someone tried to recreate a classic 80’s mens spicy chypre, but using only the dark, astringent ingredients, instead of all of them.

    Your typical 80’s masculine formula is going to have lemon and bergamot on top, with some lavender to make it dirtier, and most likely some basil and juniper berry and maybe even some anise to balance the bright citrus with some spicy darkness. Then, in the heart, you usually get a balance between some subtle flowers and some spicy woods, usually with some verbena to extend the citric brightness, leading to the masculine chypre base of galbanum, moss, vetiver, and patchouli. Now, imagine stripping out anything that’s not dark. So get rid of the lemon and the verbena, leave out the flowers, and drop anything that would balance out the remaining notes. That’s the main point of Fantastic Man.

    You’ve got a strikingly non-bright, dirty lavender, as well as that angry 80’s basil and juniper berry, playing over a really dank version of the chypre base. Oddly, they added a bright orange note on the top, but it doesn’t balance anything out, so much so that it feels like a slightly awkward afterthought or a form of perfume irony. If they had brightened this with some vetiver or played the spicy darkness against some creamy incense or something, I think I would have enjoyed it more. As is, it’s interesting, but only if you #1, enjoy classic masculine archetypes enough to want to smell what you’d get when they’re experimentally tweaked, and #2, have an appetite for the truly dank, dark side of perfumery.
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
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  18. #48
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010



    Tea Rose by Perfumer's Workshop

    I have smelled a lot of rose fragrance but this one really stands out. It's a true, beautiful, alive and fresh smelling rose. I've been crazy about classic perfumes. Fragrances nowadays (for women) smell quite synthetic and a lot of them are just like cotton candy, strawberry etc. I don't know how to describe classic fragrances but I just love them. Classic perfumes just reek with elegance and class, and this is one of them.

    For all the rose lovers out there, you must check this out!

  19. #49
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Today I’m wearing the sort-of-new Hermès Voyage d’Hermès.



    Most of the reviews I’ve read online of Voyage d’Hermès have said basically the same thing – if you’re a fan of Jean Claude Ellena, you’ll probably enjoy this. If not, this probably won’t win you over.

    Voyage d’Hermès kicks off with Ellena’s signature dirty grapefruit. It’s more upfront here than in Terre d’Hermès, but not as juicy and inviting as Eau de Pamplemousse Rose. It’s quickly joined by vetiver, which lasts on while the grapefruit fades pretty quickly. The vetiver morphs into a sort of dirty green smell that smells like some sort of herb, but that I can’t place. This all reminds me of TdH, but what you’d get if you took the Iso E Super and the metallic flint out of it. Instead, Voyage dries down to a heart that smells kind of like salty clay, or maybe hot rocks. Finally, by the mid-afternoon, I’m left with a sort of chemical sweet rose/resin smell that’s been humming along the whole time, coloring everything.

    Apparently, Hermès isn’t releasing the notes to Voyage, because it’s supposed to smell like memories or ideas instead of specific things. Ellena actually does a good job of pulling this off. While it has lots of elements that are familiar if you know his previous work, they seem weirdly non-specific and don’t smell like they do in other scents – it’s much more of an abstract piece. For instance, the vetiver is more of a familiar green dirtiness than the specific smell of vetiver. And I have no idea what in the world makes that clay/rock smell.

    So, all told, Voyage d’Hermès is sort of an abstract mash-up of Terre d’Hermès and Eau de Pamplemousse Rose, but done in a very watery way. It still has silage and is detectable, but has a watery lightness that can either be refreshing and modern, or kind of disappointing and thin, depending on your mood and the weather. If you like Ellena’s textbook creations (you know, the ones that basically re-invent Declaration over and over again), you’ve probably already hunted down a sample of Voyage. If you’re not a fan, don’t bother.
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  20. #50

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Parfums de Nicolai New York. Is it just me or is this quite similar to Pierre Cardin PH, but with a smother vibe? Whatever, it's great. Dammit, I see another bottle buy in the near future....

  21. #51
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    HYLE by Farmacia SS Annunziata. Listed as Lemon, bergamot, myrtle, lavender, ginger, ozone, musk notes, juniper wood, patchouli.
    It smells very similar to Brezza di Mare by i Profumi di Firenze on my skin, quite pleasant, but is it as good as Brezza or Erolfa from Creed - decision time I think as I like all 3.

  22. #52

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    [QUOTE=Ciprian;1905408]
    Quote Originally Posted by rogalal View Post
    Thanks for being so nice, everybody!

    I'm a little slow to react here, but I'm curious about that Bamboo frag Ciprian listed above. I'm a little scared of the marine notes, but "bamboo" and "cotton flower" with jasmine and amber??? I can barely imagine jasmine and amber together, much less with marine ingredients and weird woods...


    Well,I think you shouldn't be scared about those marine notes.Even it sounds weird, that list of notes ,I think they are all mixed very well together.If you have the chance to test it ,please do,I really like it.

    Bamboo from spanish designer Adolfo Dominguez is a medium-low cost fragance here in Spain. It smells good, it's nice and soft. Some people around here say that it's quite similar to Armani Code. I think they have similarities but are far from being copies.

    At the beginning it's very confortable, but don't expect too much sillage or longevity after some time. Anyway it's cheap and much better that similarly priced scents as the "Antonio Banderas Line". 18 euros for 60 ml. Not a bad deal.

    Adolfo Dominguez Vetiver and Agua Fresca, you should try them both.

  23. #53
    volley2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010




    Vol De Nuit - almost has the similar opening to Jicky. But this is definitely way better. A really
    gorgeous classic. It has that powdery smell quite common to Guerlains.

    Cuir Beluga - the leather here is a bit toned down. The leather is of that creamy soft powdery
    leather. My favorite of the L'Art et la Matière range.

    Spiritueuse Double Vanille - for some reason, this one is quite similar to Cuir Beluga only this
    is spicier, more "bright" than of Beluga. Close to the skin scent

    Cologne du 68 - this one has that similarity with L'instant Guerlain Pour Homme. For a cologne, this is
    quite good. A sophisticated cologne.

    All in all, I am impressed with all these four. WIll be good addition to everyone's wardrobe.
    Last edited by volley2; 23rd August 2010 at 12:59 AM.

  24. #54
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by volley2 View Post
    Cologne du 68 - this one has that similarity with L'instant Guerlain Pour Homme. For a cologne, this is quite good. A sophisticated cologne.
    Woo Hoo! I'm not the only one who thinks they're similar. To me, 68 is L'Instant pour Homme with all the empty spaces filled in. It's one of my favorites.

    Today I'm wearing Abyad Al Amber oil from Abdul Samad Al Qurashi.



    When I got this in a trade, I thought it would be pure ambergris tincture and was shocked when it didn't smell anything like what I knew ambergris to be. Thankfully, a quick trip to the Abdul Samad Al Qurashi website explained: "When Amber added to Agarwood Oli, some herbs & wild flowers it gives you a fancy blend to provide you with freshness & energy. That is what you will absolutely find at Abdul Samad AlQurashi showrooms." So it turns out that it's an oud blend that includes ambergris, which makes a lot more sense...

    Abyad Al Amber kicks off with tea tree oil, in all its bright, mentholated glory. Soon, the top of the oud pokes its way through. If you're familiar with Montale Aouds, you'll know its medicinal facet, that way that oud can smell like moldy medicine and plasticky Band-Aids. In the topnotes, only those medicinal elements of the amber manage to show through the tea tree oil, so it blends to create something that mostly smells like Vick Vap-O-Rub.

    Given more time, the wood notes start to take center stage, creating an effect similar to mentholated pine with a touch of that medicinal oud still poking through. It gets softer as the hours go by, and it eventually loses the bright mentholated feel as the tea tree finally fades away and the creamier, slightly animalic base of the oud comes through.

    The base of Abyad Al Amber reminds me of the drydown of the cedar oil I've tried, which ends up smelling like moist forest dirt. But there's a hint of ocean air in there too, which I'm assuming is the ambergris finally making an appearance. This stage is beautiful. If you've ever driven through or hiked in the coastal woods of Northern California, where the redwoods or the coastal cypress meet the intoxicating smell of the ocean, you no doubt know that it's one of the best smells in the world. This is the closest I've ever come to smelling that magic in a perfume. That being said, there's the problem of the topnotes. The base is really weak compared to the top, so I'd have to put on enormous amounts of this (which would result in nuclear Vap-O-Rub silage) in order to fully enjoy the basenotes, which I don't think is worth it.

    To avoid disappointment, I'd say to skip it if you're looking for ambergris - that's not the focus at all. Instead, if you enjoy dark medicinal smells mixing with trees, you may love Abyad Al Amber. And if you have a deep abiding love for Vicks Vap-O-Rub, this may be your grail...
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
    Currently wearing: Lys 41 by Le Labo

  25. #55
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Yesterday morning, I wore Dirt by Demeter Fragrance Library.



    I was expecting Dirt to be that moist forest dirt smell that I enjoy in cedar/vetiver frags, but it was actually the smell of plain, common dirt. Like when you were a kid and dug in dirt - it's that smell, and it's not anything I've smelled in a perfume before.

    Oddly, it kicks off with a really heavy alcohol note, like sniffing rubbing alcohol or vodka. It takes a few minutes for that to mostly burn off and for Dirt to start smelling like dirt. The true-to-life dirt smell lasts about a half an hour, before it fades to a sort of herbal green alcohol smell. It doesn't literally smell like gin or absinth, but it has that same aura of liquor based on a dark green herb. It's also kind of sweet and really quite pleasant, if a bit weak.

    The whole experience only lasts a couple of hours. I honestly think it would be fun to have a little bottle of this around for evenings or random times when you just want to smell something interesting for a little while. Then I could douse myself in it and really walk around in a cloud of it. Oh, and if I didn't specifically say, the dirt smell actually smells really good, even if you'd think it would be gross.

    I'm not sure if I'd call this required sampling, but I'd still strongly recommend giving it a test run, just for fun. You'll probably enjoy it.
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
    Currently wearing: Lys 41 by Le Labo

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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Yesterday afternoon, after Dirt wore off, I put on Creed Royal Water.



    This has to have been the most horrible of the modern citrusy Creeds that I've tried. At their best, modern Creeds can deftly ride the line between bright, refreshing, natural citrus fruit smells and aquatic, brightening synthetics, somehow getting the mix just right. Instead of doing this, Royal Water just reeks of that faux-citrus aromachemical that smells like Tang. I swear, that chemical is responsible for almost every citrus frag that I hate. Creed is usually better than this.

    I was waiting for the fake citrus to finally die down so I could at least enjoy the textbook Creed ambergris base, but alas, the whole thing faded so much that I couldn't even really smell anything by the time the base came through.

    Officially, Royal Water was put out to commemorate Princess Diana and is supposed to be the smell of diamonds. Whatever . To me, it's the sickly orange glow of sodium vapor lamps in an industrial parking lot expressed as a fragrance, but I'm sure there's someone out there that will appreciate it.

    If you're a hardcore collector and you need a bottle of Royal Water to complete your collection, at least the bottle is cool. And if you're a fan of synthetic citruses (like Frederic Malle's Outrageous) you may actually love the sweet chemical orange glow that Royal Water creates. But if you're looking for a sparkling, distinctive citrus, or even if you're searching for your signature Creed, you'd probably be better off looking elsewhere.
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
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  27. #57

    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Mona Di Orio day here for me ... New Nombres impressions in the lady section but also trying Nuit Noir ...

    Oh my goodness where do I begin , Im somewhere between horrified , intrigued and in love with it . First off its the biggest civet bombshell I have ever tried , it makes MKK seem shy and reserved . Then a tonne of tuberose and jasmine . Its so dense and complex , this need a lot more time

  28. #58
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by Pour_Monsieur View Post
    First off its the biggest civet bombshell I have ever tried , it makes MKK seem shy and reserved . Then a tonne of tuberose and jasmine . Its so dense and complex , this need a lot more time
    Note to self: Remove Nuit Noir from test list...

    Thanks for the warning.

    Today, I'm doing a side-by-side comparison of Geurlain L'Instant Pour Homme and L'Instant Pour Homme Extreme.

    VS.

    Both variations kicked off with the signature of L'Instant, a green, herbal mix of crushed fennel seed and that pollen note made famous by Chamade. There's also a papery tobacco leaf note in there that becomes stronger in the heart.

    The original is mostly about these green notes. It's not too bright, but it still has an uplifting feeling. There's a tiny pinch of powder in there - not enough that it smells old-school, but just enough that it smells like a composed fragrance and not just herbs.

    Extreme has this same basic mix, but adds a cocoa note. It doesn't smell like chocolate that you'd eat - it's that dry cocoa bean perfume note, which is kind of dark and herbal as opposed to smelling like food. Over the life of the fragrance, the main theme is mostly the interplay between the dry, dark cocoa and the tobacco leaf. In the top, where things are sweeter, it almost smells like cream soda, but that doesn't last (thankfully) and the green notes make sure it never smells gourmand.

    Simultaneously, the original stays brighter and the green notes remain the focus for quite a while, until some woody notes in the heart make everything a bit darker. But, on the whole, the original is always brighter and more green, while Extreme is darker and more brooding.

    Both versions end up with a Guerlinade base, a nice vanilla mixed with herbs and residual woods in the original, while Extreme's Guerlinade is more peppery and has the cocoa in it.

    I personally preferred the original over Extreme. It stayed equally strong until the basenotes hit, at which point, Extreme was definitely stronger. I liked the interesting green pollen notes with the wood more than the chocolate/tobacco, but I'm pretty amazed that they managed to make a chocolate scent that smells this mature and well-thought-out. I can see how so many people prefer it, too.

    In the end, though, I still think Cologne du 68 is the best of these three. It has the same fennel seed/pollen/tobacco over a better Guerlinade, with more present woods and spices, as well as a boozy undercurrent and some bready orris root that makes for a much more "full" experience that manages to hit pretty much everything Guerlain is best at. It's weird, L'Instant feels like a complete perfume until you try 68, when you realize that more meat on its bones really does help. But that's just my opinion - either of these are worth a test, but just do me a favor and don't pick up either of these until you've tested 68...
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??
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  29. #59
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by Pour_Monsieur View Post
    but also trying Nuit Noir ...

    Oh my goodness where do I begin , Im somewhere between horrified , intrigued and in love with it . First off its the biggest civet bombshell I have ever tried , it makes MKK seem shy and reserved . Then a tonne of tuberose and jasmine . Its so dense and complex , this need a lot more time

    I absolutely love this fragrance!
    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

  30. #60
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    Default Re: Samples Of The Day - August 2010

    Quote Originally Posted by rogalal View Post
    In the end, though, I still think Cologne du 68 is the best of these three. It has the same fennel seed/pollen/tobacco over a better Guerlinade, with more present woods and spices, as well as a boozy undercurrent and some bready orris root that makes for a much more "full" experience that manages to hit pretty much everything Guerlain is best at. It's weird, L'Instant feels like a complete perfume until you try 68, when you realize that more meat on its bones really does help. But that's just my opinion - either of these are worth a test, but just do me a favor and don't pick up either of these until you've tested 68...
    I'm glad someone agrees with me on this - this is exactly the way I felt when I got Cologne du 68. It seems it has made my L' Instant Pour Homme Extreme almost obsolete.

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