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  1. #1

    Default Sample of the day: September 2012

    This morning I sampled the original release of Armani Mania from a care package sent by a dear BN friend. I missed this release in the midst of my careerist, childrearing years and wanted to find out what I had missed, having Read so many glowing reviews.

    It opened slightly citrus floral, not particularly bergamot or lemon nor are the florals noticeably rose or jasmine. It is however pretty if non descript. In seconds this left me and the mild mixed florals sort of bloomed gently. The mix was reminiscent of an old fashioned English sweet shop with open boxes of Cherry Lips, Parma Violets, Midget Gems and Floral Gums. To those who are unfamiliar these gums and sweeties are chewy hard gums the smell and flavour of which bears no resemblance to their supposed flavourings and scent. Parma violets were small losenges which smelt then nearest to violets of them all. I digress that sweet shop smell is what came to mind with Mania but smelt from the road only when the door to the shop opened. Almost an ethereal waft which disappeared as quickly as it came leaving you wondering if you imagined it.

    30 minutes in there's a whiff of sweet pipe tobacco but only an illusive whiff which conjours up the the shop having dark polished wooden floors and shelves as a background muted vanilla takes over. Within the hour it left me.

    I can see how this joined up "clean" 90s fragrances to the more robust gourmands and incense/tobacco scent fashion to come in the 00s. I'm grateful to my BN friend for enabling me to sniff part of fragrance history. Would I ever have bought it? No, iconic it may be but anything with no sillage and longevity of only an hour would never have interested me
    Last edited by Alityke; 2nd September 2012 at 11:06 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Giving another skin test to Opus V...

    A norlimbanol bomb.

    Opus V opens with a magnificent accord of iris paired with a woody-oudish note and some booze. Just terrific. Unfortunately, norlimbanol, which is an extremely powerful woody amber aromachemical takes over in the middle phase driving the fragrance towards an endless dry woody-oudish-incensey drydown that resembles of way too many fragrances of the same genre. From many Montale's to Nasomatto via the botloads of synthetic woody compositions available on the market.

    I still kind of like this stuff but I seriously doubt there would be someone going through a whole bottle. Extremely powerful and with tenacious lasting power.


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  3. #3
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today l tried Gucci Rush, one of a package of samples sent to me by a lovely basenoter.

    l am sorry to say that this just isn't my thing at all. The notes list mentions three of my favourite notes; gardenia, jasmine & freesia. But what l get is a plasticky, ozonic opening reminiscent of hairspray or shampoo, followed by milky, peachy lactones that suggest a fruit salad rather than flowers. Very generic & synthetic-smelling, it is almost completely linear, has average projection, & fades after only four hours on me. This does not live up to the hype; it's just ordinary, & well, meh.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  4. #4
    rogalal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today, I wore another of the new Tom Ford dirty floral series, Lys Fume.



    After the hyacinth one I wore yesterday turned out to be a lily perfume, it left me really curious what the one with lily in the name would smell like. Well, it smells like Tom Ford. He has a knack for perfumes containing such crazy sticky syrups of notes that they really shouldn't work, but somehow do (think of Black Orchid's coconut/bleu cheese/indole mixture as a prime example). Lys Fume is one of those.

    It kicks off with a mix of cherry candy and bubblegum jasmine, with fresh mint, tobacco leaf, and a deep green patchouli to keep it from smelling too sweet and stupid. It's vaguely milky and simultaneously smells kind of astringent, like some sort of booze. And somehow, all of this comes together to smell quite dark and almost chocolatey. No, I don't understand it - I'm just reporting what I smell....

    Eventually, somehow, it ends up as a proper lily perfume, soapy and green, with these crazy topnotes faded enough to just add a subtle chocolate undertone and cherry liqueur sparkle. The tobacco leaf manages to hold its own against the lily, giving hints of boozy almond and heliotrope as well as the familiar Le Male-ish tobacco smell. With time, a soapy vanilla wells up underneath everything, giving it a sweet creamy feel.

    Like I said in yesterday's review of Ombre De Hyacinth, I just don't think I like lily perfumes that much. So Tom gets points for throwing a wrench into a tried and true genre and coming up with something truly different. But, I still don't like it that much. If this were a proper review, I'd probably give it a thumbs up anyway, just for being so interesting and confusing (in a good way), even though I don't really think I'd wear this very often...
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Rogalal I'm intrigued about these 2 lily scents. In your opinion is it worth me searching them out?

  6. #6
    rogalal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Alityke, I definitely think they're interesting. Ombre de Hyacinth struck me as what you'd get if you crossed the soapy leaf smell of Maison Martin Margiela with a "dirty" lily perfume like Malle's Lys Mediteranee or Serge's Un Lys, with just a wink and a nod to Diorella plasticky weirdness.

    Lys Fume really isn't like anything I've smelled before. For the first hour, it's so far away from a lily scent that I couldn't imagine how it could turn into one, but it did. Have you tried Cartier's Baiser Vole yet, with its chocolate and lily? It's sort of like that, a little bit, but like someone took the friendly and surprisingly appealing Cartier and poured some crazy Lutens ingredients over it.

    If you have easy access to a store with the Tom Fords, I'd say give them a sniff. If you're a hardcore lily fan or just have a thing for interesting scents, they're worth trying. I think they're well made, but just not my cup of tea.

    Continuing on, today I wore Tom Ford Jonquille De Nuit.



    This one owes a huge debt of gratitude to Bond No 9's Fire Island. For anyone else who has trouble keeping track of all the Bonds, Fire Island is that one that smells like old Bain De Soleil suntan lotion slathered on salty warm bodies at the beach. Jonquille de Nuit has that same opulent-floral-over-salty-beach-bodies thing going on, but instead of Fire Island's suntan lotion smell (which, to my nose, is mostly orange blossom), it uses a soapy indolic tuberose.

    The effect is actually very nice. The soapy musks act as a brilliant tool to fuse together the salty skin smell and the tuberose. The result is very well balanced - the beachy skin smell never feels like a silly novelty, while the tuberose is toned down enough that Jonquille de Nuit manages to be opulent without being loud, which is a rarity in tuberose perfumes.

    Given time, it ends up as soapy white musk, lightly sweetened with vanilla and kept flowery with lingering tuberose and a subtle whiff of neroli.

    I like Jonquille de Nuit. It's been fun, but I REALLY like Fire Island, so I can't see needing something else so clearly based on the same ideas. That being said, it's quite well done and I'd dare say that tuberose fanatics and lovers of big white florals should really check it out.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Can I join in?
    I received some wonderful samples from a fellow Basenoter and would like to
    share my thoughts on some of the scents here.
    First of all I tried Mandorlo di Sicilia by Acqua di Parma. I had smelled this a while back,
    whilst going through a "almond" phase, and loved it then. This time around I appreciated it
    even more - so tender, comforting and utterly beguiling. My nose was glued to my wrist
    for ages, so much so that I am sure there is a note in there that causes immediate addiction!!
    It lasts well and fades to a gentle woodsy, vanilla whisper eventually, but it's those topnotes that
    hook me in. Honestly I could bathe in this stuff.


    My second test involved the well-documented China Town. I had read so much about
    this perfume and was dying to try it, but afraid it would not live up to it's hype. Well it
    did and it didn't! First of all I detected a mixture of peach and floor wax - not unpleasant,
    but unexpected. Definitely ripe fruits, maybe plums joined in next and then I got a weird
    plastic note. It remained like this fruity/waxy/warm plastic vibe for quite a long time before fading to a soft whisper after about two hours (my skin eats scent for breakfast.)
    I did enjoy it, but it wasn't the gourmand I was expecting. I agree with LT's description of the corner of a French greengrocer's floor warmed by the heat of the sun.
    A woman without perfume is like a flower without a scent.

  8. #8
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Kewart, of course you can join in, you are very welcome!

    l too have been curious about Chinatown, but not so much now, it doesn't sound like something l would enjoy at all! Thanks for the review!
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Welcome Kewart!

    I haven't smelled Mandorlo di Sicilia in years. I wrote it off as too sweet long ago, but I'm curious how I'd like it now that I've grown to really like that almond heliotrope smell. I haven't smelled Chinatown in a while either, but you're making me less curious about that one...

    Today, predictably, I've been wearing the last of the new Tom Ford "dirty floral" collection, Café Rose.



    This is Tom's entry into the already crowded market of "dark rose" perfumes. You know, the attar-influenced kind that mix rose and patchouli over sandalwood, with what smells like oud but is usually just saffron? He's a bit late to the game with this particular niche cliche, taking on favorites like C&S's Dark Rose, Malle's Portrait Of A Lady, as well rose ouds from pretty much every niche house (not to mention hundreds of Montales).

    It's dark all the way through, though the top has a bit of a sheen to it from a high-pitched violet, but the star of the first couple of hours is a mix of rose and patchouli that smells like deep, dark berry jam. This plays out over leathery saffron, which gives the illusion of oud. As the sweet rosy jam fades, the saffron becomes the star of the show, unfortunately joined by that aquatic "woody amber" metallic ammonia smell that I hate. There's a subtle dry chocolate hidden beneath the aquatic leather, as well as a quiet burnt quality that I think is supposed to be the coffee note in the name.

    The end result is a perfume that starts off smelling like Montale's Black Aoud (but with the medicinal oud taken out) and ends up like one of Bond No 9's aquatic-chemical fake ouds. In a way, this nod to western tastes will probably earn Cafe Rose its share of fans, but if you want something like this with the potentially offensive bits smoothed over and without the silly aquatic chemicals, check out Portrait Of A Lady, which is much nicer with its good rose note.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Waxy, plastic fruit? Chinatown doesn't sound good at all. Thanks for the review.

    I need to try more Malle scents..and TF..thanks for that one too.
    "One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want." Proverbs.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today I sampled Chinatown by Bond No.9 (thanks Ali)

    Erm, not 100% sure what to think.
    It opens with a bright synthetic peach and a candied cherry note. It's edible, a little waxy and "plasticky" and a sugar-dusted orange blossom comes in pretty quick.
    There's some faux-white florals underneath (listed as tuberose and gardenia but I get neither). When the vanilla from the base begins to mix with these it turns the fragrance from fruity floral into almost gourmand.
    A sweet jasmine joins the orange blossom and these begin the two leading players after the fruitiness of the beginning burns off.
    The fruity aroma does stay through the heart though but no longer peach and cherry, it becomes more reminicent of dark red fruits like plum - but it stays relatively light.
    The base thankfully holds a little bitter edge of oakmoss, with the vanilla still there and a smidge of creamy sandalwood.
    At times it smells a little like a Lush shop - but a touch more refined and less powdery.
    If I were to compare it to another scent it would be Love by By Kilian (which I prefer for it's loud over-the-top personality and fluffy texture).
    All in all, it is a nice, easy to like fragrance, but there are others in a similar category I prefer

  12. #12

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Chinatown to me smells like a 70s scented Avon dolly taken to the nth degree. Freddie I know this isn't a reference you'll have but I wish you could find one to sniff. The peculiar pliable fleshy plastic always had an undersmell of peach fuzz but very synthetic and were impregnated with soliflores. Reading yours and Kewart's reviews this mell is exactly what you describe.

    I love it's weirdness, plasticky, tackiness enough to have rescued a bottle of course. The nearest thing to it to me is Gucci Rush which Sanchez also raved about

  13. #13

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by Alityke View Post
    Chinatown to me smells like a 70s scented Avon dolly taken to the nth degree. Freddie I know this isn't a reference you'll have but I wish you could find one to sniff. The peculiar pliable fleshy plastic always had an undersmell of peach fuzz but very synthetic and were impregnated with soliflores. Reading yours and Kewart's reviews this mell is exactly what you describe.

    I love it's weirdness, plasticky, tackiness enough to have rescued a bottle of course. The nearest thing to it to me is Gucci Rush which Sanchez also raved about

    Haha! I love it when something triggers a memory and it's captured in a bottle. I'm desperate to find the smell of the ET ride queue line at Universal Studios in a bottle :')
    Back to Chinatown - I'm glad you're enjoying your bottle Ali. It is a nice fragrance, and I don't mean for my words "plasticky" to come across as bad - heck I love that kind of synthetic texture :P

  14. #14
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today l'm sampling Rien by Etat Libre d'Orange, from a goodie bag sent by the fabulous freddie (thanks again! ).

    This has a dark, bitter, astringent & almost harsh opening of dry leather & ash, & immediately l'm agreeing with one of the reviewers who describes this as a "don't mess with me" fragrance! After a few moments, hints of pepper & civet begin to peep through, & it steadily becomes more skanky & smoky. l get an impression of the aftermath of a wild fetish party in a smoky basement club (purely from imagination, l might add ). This is kind of how l expected Jasmin et Cigarette to be, minus the jasmine. Twenty minutes in, the edges soften, & l'm getting powder, incense & a wonderfully animalic leather beneath. The sillage is good, & five hours in it's still humming along nicely. At this rate l expect it to last several more hours before it fades.

    Although the opening of this one was indeed a rough ride, l am loving the drydown. lt strikes me as a cross between the smoky incense of Habanita & the animalic powder of Bal a Versailles. Fantastic!

    Thanks to freddie, l have a few more leathers to try over the coming days, as well as more from the ELd'O line. l'm looking forward to spending a little more time away from my usual comfort zone of florals & orientals. Thanks freddie!
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Freddie plasticky is fine coming from your weird (in the best possible way) nose after you nearly poisoned me forever after getting me to sniff CdG 2011 hee hee hee. I did consider sening you some über pretty flowers in revenge but I see you've found your own.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by teardrop View Post
    Although the opening of this one was indeed a rough ride, l am loving the drydown. lt strikes me as a cross between the smoky incense of Habanita & the animalic powder of Bal a Versailles. Fantastic!
    YAY! I'm thrilled you enjoyed this teardrop. So many people are repulsed by it and I don't get it - it is a rough ride at first, the civet, leather, aldehyde opening is intensely astringent - just like you said but the powdery soft drydown is to die for. I really have to be in the mood to wear this but I just love it when I do. Very glad to read your thoughts on this.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alityke View Post
    Freddie plasticky is fine coming from your weird (in the best possible way) nose after you nearly poisoned me forever after getting me to sniff CdG 2011 hee hee hee. I did consider sening you some über pretty flowers in revenge but I see you've found your own.
    LOL! My nose is wierd yes - but I love my fair share of safe "prettiness". I still owe you for the vintage goodybag I'm very slowly working my way through - I'm going to send you more pretty things, and you have to try Secret Garden by Aftelier, I'll send you some - it's my new pure love (but don't worry I won't be surprised if you hate it :P) I hope you've recovered from your CDG poisoning - did you find a lucky person to swap it with?

  17. #17

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Freddie I've buried it at the bottom of the garden where the builders are going to cover it with concrete. Bit like. Body under the patio only joking! Its too nuclear for that! I'll pop it in a care package with a warning.

    Still got to try Miel de Bois which after Kalli's experience I'm worried. The difference I guess is that I enjoy SL generally and Im used to the smell of wee from work

  18. #18

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    This morning I am going to try and describe Molinard's Vanilla.

    Vanillas can be sweet, candy-floss and sickening or deep, smoky and
    warm. Molinard's Vanilla falls very definitely into the latter category.
    This is a grown-up, sexy vanilla with a hint of rum (not listed in the notes
    but there nonetheless!) and a whisp of blackened wood and heliotrope. It is dry, mysterious
    and very snuggly. I would imagine it would layer well and would add a rich depth
    to florals or orientals.

    You get the impression I like this a lot??!!
    A woman without perfume is like a flower without a scent.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by Alityke View Post
    Freddie I've buried it at the bottom of the garden where the builders are going to cover it with concrete. Bit like. Body under the patio only joking! Its too nuclear for that! I'll pop it in a care package with a warning.

    Still got to try Miel de Bois which after Kalli's experience I'm worried. The difference I guess is that I enjoy SL generally and Im used to the smell of wee from work
    LOL!!! Oh Ali - you didn't half have a bad reaction to that one :') I don't get it but there we go :P
    Oh did I send you some Miel de Bois? That's cool, I forget what I send to who hahha. Yeh kalli hated it Owwww, everyone hates my favourites haha. I didn't pick up the pee note until about 5 months of owning it, I still love it though, the fragrance is just as much about sharp woods as it is about pee.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Sorry forfreddie, again. lol. CDG reminded me of like cellophane+waxed store floor smell..something like that. Never smelled those notes in a perfume before,. I didn't care for it but it was interesting. I forget what I send people too. lol.
    Last edited by kalli; 6th September 2012 at 10:53 AM.
    "One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want." Proverbs.

  21. #21
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Veering back to my florientals momentarily, today l've tried Donna Karan Gold. l bought this bottle blind for a very good price off ebay a couple of weeks ago, & thought it was time l gave it a proper wearing! This discontinued fragrance gets a lot of love on some of the blogs, which aroused my curiosity, as l love lily & amber.

    The lily note is present from start to finish in this one. For the first 45 minutes, it has an ozonic, metallic & slightly aquatic edge, very reminiscent of Flora Bella by Lalique; l will have to do a side-by-side comparison at some point. After this, it warms & softens into a lily-amber skin scent with just a touch of clove. lt is not a complex composition to my nose, & not as opulent as l had hoped. lt's also pretty much gone after three hours. A nice floriental nonetheless, l think it is suitably discreet for wearing to work, & l've already decanted some into an atomiser to allow for frequent top-ups.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by Alityke View Post
    Freddie I've buried it at the bottom of the garden where the builders are going to cover it with concrete. Bit like. Body under the patio only joking! Its too nuclear for that! I'll pop it in a care package with a warning.

    Still got to try Miel de Bois which after Kalli's experience I'm worried. The difference I guess is that I enjoy SL generally and Im used to the smell of wee from work
    Ha!!! And you wonder why I did not jump at your sample offer? That is too funny - I wonder how many "bodies" of perfume samples you have under your patio?

    - - - Updated - - -

    teardrop, EDT or EDP of the Gold?

  23. #23

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Hehehe.... Alityke's Perfumed Patio

    Ladies and Gentlemen
    Roll up, Roll up to Alityke's Perfumed Patio!
    Disappointing blind buys?
    Samples you fear are nuclear waste?
    Pre-perfumista purchases?
    Arrange to hide the shame
    Buy a burial at Alityke's Perfumed Patio

    Oooohhhh I feel a thread coming on

  24. #24
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by cello View Post
    teardrop, edt or edp of the gold?
    edp.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by teardrop View Post
    edp.
    Thanks. I sounds like the EDT (which I own) and the EDP act/last about the same. Interesting. I also feel it fades to a skin scent after about an hour or so, then with average longevity. But I still like this fragrance - warm floral with an spicy twist.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Because I can't resist copying the cool kids, I went to bed last night in Chinatown.

    At first, I smelled cinnamon and clove mixed with that perfumey peachy smell that everyone here talked about. Then it was all swallowed up by a weird smell. When I was a kid, my crafty mom used to make candles. This involved melting large amounts of wax on the kitchen stove. I remember that smell - the hot metal of the electric stove, weirdly devoid of the food smells that usually covered it up, as well as the house-filling smell of hot wax.

    That's what Chinatown reminded me of, that perfumey fruity smell with the cinnamon and clove, drenched in that melted wax and hot stove smell. Maybe it was the nostalgic imagery it created, but I liked it a lot more than I thought I would....
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  27. #27

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    rogalal your review is so so different to what I smelt - no cinnamon and clove on me...
    However, ironically today I sampled Shiso by Aftelier which did have exactly that...



    Shiso is bitter and challenging.
    I'll post my full review just below this brief one as there is no way to cram all this in.
    Basically, the opening is so complicated it becomes almost unbearable, a bitter green aroma of green pepper - vegetal and pungent. Followed by the heat of cloves and dry cinnamon. It verges on "curry" territory but thankfully just stays away.
    A little later on becomes an abstract pine and a very bizarre mint note - not "cool" at all, but warmed up by the hot spices.
    The drydown is real oud, sandalwood and patchouli - which is greatly appreciate when it comes by.
    It is so different from anything I've tried and is completely non-category specific, I can't think of anything else like it, even a little bit.
    It's a spicy green scent I suppose - but a lot more literal than that sounds.
    It is without a doubt the most complicated, challenging fragrance in the Aftelier line (and probably one of the most challenging I have tried). Whilst I wouldn't wear this, I find it extremely interesting to sniff and write about, a standout in avant-garde perfumery.
    http://smellythoughts.wordpress.com/...lier-perfumes/

  28. #28

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Sample of the day today is Paco Rabanne Metal. I was gifted. Bottle of this as a 17 year old and whilst I wore it I dint appreciate the beauty of it.

    This open all sappy and green, I got little citrus but that may be that these fragile top notes has disappeared with age. This green stem slowly climbs the stem finding a creamy white floral with minerallic and oily qualities still underpinned by the sappyness which keeps it fresh.

    This is a stunning composition which to my nose is Full Bottle Worthy. The progression is seamless from top down and green and fresh yet rounded and 'fat'. This fullness means it has great longevity, 7 hrs and still going, for a green fragrance.

    The nearest thing I can compare this to is original Ivoire de Balmain. I guess it could be classified as a white loral chypre if such a thing exists.

    Speaking of Ivoire I tried the new formulation yesterday. The horror to discovering it bears no resemblance to the original, I couldn't find any flowers or greenery. All I could smell was soap. Not unpleasant but done better in JLo Glow

  29. #29
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Yesterday l tried Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d'Empire; another from freddie's goodie-bag, & one that was coincidentally recommended to me by L'Aventurier in his "Personality Questions" thread.

    The opening is a hyper-realistic leather, like a fine pair of shoes. Over the first-half-hour, this accord is sweetened by benzoin & incense, & settles fairly close to the skin. As it develops, the scent slowly becomes warmer & more powdery, fading to a smoky, balsamic base, & reminding me somewhat of Guerlain's Bois d'Armenie. lt is still going six hours in when l retire to bed.

    l like this, but it didn't knock my socks off like Rien did. lt was a fairly cold evening last night, & l get the feeling this fragrance might benefit from a little more heat to make it bloom. l also think it might be better sprayed on, so l'll try it again from a spray vial at some point.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  30. #30

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Glad you got round to trying Cuir Ottoman (I forget what I put in people's goodie bags!)
    Yeh it's not an in your face screaming leather like Rien, but a more wearable, plush textured leather with a beautifully smoky vanilla powder base. It's fab in the winter, look forward to hearing how you like it sprayed

    Ali - thanks for your review of Metal, that's one I've been interested in for a while.

  31. #31

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by forfreddie View Post
    Glad you got round to trying Cuir Ottoman (I forget what I put in people's goodie bags!)
    Yeh it's not an in your face screaming leather like Rien, but a more wearable, plush textured leather with a beautifully smoky vanilla powder base. It's fab in the winter, look forward to hearing how you like it sprayed

    Ali - thanks for your review of Metal, that's one I've been interested in for a while.
    Freddie I agree with you! Thanks to you I've got another Parfum d'Empire to love! Cuir Ottoman is great, a nice, fluffy, orrised leather! GORGEOUS!

  32. #32

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by lucasai View Post
    Freddie I agree with you! Thanks to you I've got another Parfum d'Empire to love! Cuir Ottoman is great, a nice, fluffy, orrised leather! GORGEOUS!
    Lol! I sent you some too? Heck I'm just throwing my juices around....

    giggidy

    Anyway! Glad you're enjoying lucas, can't wait to hear your thoughts on everything else!

  33. #33
    rogalal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    I've spent the last couple of weeks working my way through a 14-piece sample box of the early Olympic Orchids scents, but most of them have entries here, so I've been writing my reviews in the database instead of this thread. It's been an interesting set of smells, ranging from charmingly amateurish essential oil blends to really well-thought-out, fully realized perfumes. For the record, my favorite was Olympic Amber, a surprisingly green amber based on labdanum with a woody incense undertone and a hint of Moss Breches green forest floor patchouli.

    After trying most of the line, I can smell that Olympic Orchids has some favorite house notes. There's a sweet, effervescent creme soda accord that turns up in unusual places, a more nuanced smell that they seem to like more than plain vanilla but that serves as the same sort of sweetening agent. A lot of their scents also have a waxy undertone (beeswax absolute??) that's explored the most fully in Golden Cattelya, an extremely waxy acacia/citrus/linden blossom smell that plays around with the inherent similarities and contradictions between wax, honey, flowers,and wood. They like to support their scents with a papery rosewood that reminds me of papyrus or old books, and they also have a specific but unnamed wood note that's supposed to pay tribute to the forests of the Pacific Northwest. I personally guess that it's some sort of eucalyptus, because a lot of their scents start off with a vaguely out-of-place medicinal Vap-O-Rub shine, sometimes really prominent and sometimes just giving a some of their topnotes the illusion of being some sort of perfumey cough drop flavor.

    One of the "cough drop" scents is the one I've been wearing today, Olympic Rainforest. It combines the mystery wood with a sort of minty menthol smell, which gives it a menthol-lyptus flavor. It's also a very "blue" smell, but in a way that I find hard to describe. I remember that I used to buy light blue cough drops, strong medicinal disks in a blister pack that had a very specific "icy blue" flavor. This smells like those, but extremely sweet. Have you ever made vanilla sugar by putting vanilla beans in sugar and just letting it sit until the sugar takes on the vanilla flavor? Well, if some strange person put those blue cough drops in sugar and stored it until the sugar took on the slightly medicinal and icy blue but still bubblegum-sweet smell of those cough drops, it would probably smell like Olympic Rainforest.

    Given a few hours, the sugar smell died down, letting through a nice mix of pine and labdanum, still shiny with the remnants of the "ice blue" smell. I really liked this stage, but the topnotes were an uncomfortable mix of sweet and strange that I could imagine winning over many a niche fan, but that didn't really appeal to me personally. That being said, and apropos of nothing, if they added a huge slug of vetiver and some rose geranium to this, I think it could be absolutely swoon-worthy.

    When I first got this sample box, I unintentionally grabbed a couple of their essential-oil based fruity florals, which kind of scared me away, but now that I've gotten to know the line, I'm fairly impressed. There's a sense of continuity and confident self-reference that shows that someone is putting an awful lot of work into not just creating scents, but a whole cohesive collection. Sure, there are some early works here that show more promise than maturity, but I'd suggest that fans of the better indie perfumers like Neil Morris would probably enjoy this relatively obscure line.

    Oh, and I haven't even made my way into their "Dev" line yet, a series of dark smoky experimental storytelling pieces that I really liked at the San Francisco Artisan Fragrance Salon. I expect those to solidify my respect for the line even more...
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??

  34. #34
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today l tried lncense Extreme by Tauer.

    This opens bright & zingy with a beautiful accord of petitgrain & coriander. Unfortunately for me, this wonderful freshness disappears after ten minutes, giving way to a darker, greener impression of pine & a raw, resinous amber. A slightly burnt incense comes to the fore after 40 minutes or so, & from here it stays quite linear, drying down into a woody, ambery, dry incense & settling close to the skin. lt is still there after seven hours when l go for a shower.

    l am sorry to say that after the opening l find this one a bit boring, although at times it does remind me of both Ambre Sultan & L'Air du Desert Marocain. AS is more herbal though, & LADDM far more interesting. For me the drydown did not live up to the opening, & instead just landed on my skin with a dull "thunk", & just sat there without doing anything to further impress me.
    l vastly prefer the "headshop incense" of Le Maroc to this type. l am not familiar with church incense, but if this is what it smells like, it is not as intoxicating as l imagined.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  35. #35

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today I sampled:

    Santal Majascule Serge Lutens

    A more mature sibling to Jeux De Peau - Santal Majascule opens very similar, the prominent sandalwood slightly desweetened but re-textured by cocoa, a clean rose making it more "perfume-y", but there still is the sweetness but here created by honey.
    It's nothing original in the Lutens' lineup, but a great example of what he does best, and still, a lovely perfume.

    Full review here

    Fermes Tes Yeux JAR

    One of my favourite openings - a huge animalic duo of castoreum and civet. The overripe indolic florals of ylang-ylang, paired with the cool, crisp herbal notes of clove, eucalyptus, maybe lavender and mint.
    More florals join in - the hammy cold spice of lily, orange blossom and maybe linden - a beeswax and musky drydown piled with leather makes it something extremely challenging, but gorgeous.

    Full review here

  36. #36

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today I tested Amoureuse. It opened with a blast of, what I can only describe as, "cat wee on grass". I waited for that to fade in the dry down, but it was quite persistent, so I have had to scrub it off. It was too acrid for my taste. I might try it again when I feel brave enough, just to see how it progresses in the extreme dry down.
    Do happy

  37. #37
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Yesterday, I had an hour before an appointment in the city, so I made a quick sniff around to smell a few new things.

    I enjoyed Houbigant's new Oranger en Fleurs. It was a fairly straightforward orange blossom perfume, lightly indolic and waxy with a subtle darkness underneath (possibly a chypre base? I couldn't tell on paper). It reminded me of Heeley's Fleur d'Oranger, which has a similar floral simplicity over dark waxy undertones.

    The two new Amyris perfumes (his and hers) from Francis Kurkdjian were awful. I'm assuming that Neiman Marcus or some other big customer pushed him to make something more mainstream, because these smelled straight out of Marshalls. The men's one was one of those metallic aquatic "woody amber" lavender scents, complete with that violet grape note so many cheap scents use to smell familiar, while the women's was a peachy fruity floral.

    My pick of the day was the new Diptyque, Volutes, which was the one I ended up wearing. It started out like a leathery iris halfway between Dior Homme and L'Artisan's Iris Pallida (are you drooling yet??), with boozy spices underneath that eventually won over, revealing that Eau Noire/Sables immortelle note (like curry mixed with maple syrup) over leather, rum, and subtle woods, while the lingering iris kept it smooth. Hours later, it ended up as a mix of chamomile and boozy pipe tobacco reminiscent of the tobacco part of Tobacco Vanille or Back In Black, but shaded with the remaining iris and immortelle.

    This was the EDP concentration. Apparently, the EDT is a whole different formulation which is theoretically more "masculine," though I think any perfume guy who's comfortable in basic niche or Dior Homme would find Volutes very wearable. One of my favorite new releases of the year...
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??

  38. #38

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Volutes sounds gorgeous I have to try it! Haven't clicked with any Diptyque's yet though

    Today I tested

    Pentachord Verdant by Tauer

    Full review here

    Verdant is interesting - it starts with a toffee/caramelized sugar sweetness and within seconds it turns into a bitter, but clean, earthy vetiver. A mint comes in subtely and gives the fragrance a cool temperature.
    In time as the sweetness subsides a little, the vetiver becomes the most prominant, with a subtle tomato leaf like greenery underneath.
    At the base is a sweet resin smell, like amber and a delicate smoke of incense, with a hit of dry cedar at the end.
    Transparent perfumery at it's best IMO

  39. #39
    rogalal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Pentachord Verdant sounds interesting. Speaking of not "clicking", I have yet to find a Tauer that I really love. I like sweet vetivers, though, so this could be promising. Is it that same resin smell that he uses as sort of a house note?

    As for Volutes and Diptyque, I too haven't found a Diptyque that I've actually bought a full bottle of, though I'm a complete fanatic for their candles. I hated Tam Dao at first, but it's growing on me, though their scented argon body oil that smells like Tam Dao but darker and smokier is more my style. L'Ombre Dans l'Eau can sometimes smell wonderful on me but sometimes is just awful, like a mix of bad breath and cat pee. Volutes is the closest they've come lately to convincing me that I need a bottle.
    Has everyone checked out my Top 100 Blog??

  40. #40

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by rogalal View Post
    Pentachord Verdant sounds interesting. Speaking of not "clicking", I have yet to find a Tauer that I really love. I like sweet vetivers, though, so this could be promising. Is it that same resin smell that he uses as sort of a house note?

    As for Volutes and Diptyque, I too haven't found a Diptyque that I've actually bought a full bottle of, though I'm a complete fanatic for their candles. I hated Tam Dao at first, but it's growing on me, though their scented argon body oil that smells like Tam Dao but darker and smokier is more my style. L'Ombre Dans l'Eau can sometimes smell wonderful on me but sometimes is just awful, like a mix of bad breath and cat pee. Volutes is the closest they've come lately to convincing me that I need a bottle.
    It is interesting If you like sweet vetiver and don't mind a bit of transparency, I think you'll really enjoy it. It is KIND of the same resin smell - but not really it isn't that kind of warm, amber spicy incense, it's quite a new take on it down to a single aromachemical as the Pentachord series are made up of just 5 molecules per fragrance, so it's much more stripped back. It's cleaner and much less intense here. You wouldn't instantly recognize it as a "Tauer".

  41. #41
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today l tried Commando by Smell Bent, thanks again to freddie .

    l get a momentary whiff of aldehyde in the opening, followed by a leathery, dirty musk with just a touch of sweetness. Over the first half hour, l detect a note of something cool & minty in the mix, before the tonka bean note comes to the fore. ln the drydown it becomes a warm, sweet, animalic skin scent with a powdery base. The sillage is low to moderate, & it lasts around six hours before fading.

    This one appeals to my fairly new-found love of animalic scents, & l enjoyed the combination of the dirty musk note with the sweetness of tonka. l would like a little more projection, but again this may be helped by spraying rather than dabbing.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  42. #42

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by teardrop View Post
    Today l tried Commando by Smell Bent, thanks again to freddie .

    l get a momentary whiff of aldehyde in the opening, followed by a leathery, dirty musk with just a touch of sweetness. Over the first half hour, l detect a note of something cool & minty in the mix, before the tonka bean note comes to the fore. ln the drydown it becomes a warm, sweet, animalic skin scent with a powdery base. The sillage is low to moderate, & it lasts around six hours before fading.

    This one appeals to my fairly new-found love of animalic scents, & l enjoyed the combination of the dirty musk note with the sweetness of tonka. l would like a little more projection, but again this may be helped by spraying rather than dabbing.
    Yay! Glad you enjoyed it, everyone I have sent samples of this out to has hated it - and said it smelt like crotch.
    I love Commando, although it's difficult to wear, a spray is very overwhelming and it does project like a beast for a few hours. Definitely a must have for the price though, it's my favourite musk so far - direct, animalic, and sweet

  43. #43
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by forfreddie View Post
    Yay! Glad you enjoyed it, everyone I have sent samples of this out to has hated it - and said it smelt like crotch.
    I love Commando, although it's difficult to wear, a spray is very overwhelming and it does project like a beast for a few hours. Definitely a must have for the price though, it's my favourite musk so far - direct, animalic, and sweet
    lf this stuff smells like crotch, then it's the sweetest, yummiest crotch everrrrrrrr!

    Thanks freddie for enabling me to try things that l might have been scared off from otherwise, just from reading people's opinions. l never thought l would enjoy this kind of thing, but "direct, animalic & sweet" seems to do it for me!
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  44. #44

    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by teardrop View Post
    lf this stuff smells like crotch, then it's the sweetest, yummiest crotch everrrrrrrr!

    Thanks freddie for enabling me to try things that l might have been scared off from otherwise, just from reading people's opinions. l never thought l would enjoy this kind of thing, but "direct, animalic & sweet" seems to do it for me!
    Haha! That's what I thought!

    Aww no thank youuuu for actually trying them and taking the time to write - I really appreciate that. You've put a grin on my face haha - that's what I'm hear for - polluting noses across the country >

  45. #45
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Today I tried a sample of Musch Ravageur by Frederic Malle. Damn, this juice is good. It is not at all linear as I have read on several posts. It's complex and transforms to an unforgettable dry down. I am definitely getting a bottle of this.

  46. #46
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample of the day: September 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by forfreddie View Post
    polluting noses across the country >
    Haha, that ought to be your tagline!

    Today l tried Must de Cartier, from a spray sample sent by the lovely kalli .

    To my nose, the opening is a very retro-style bergamot-aldehyde combo, & as it smooths out, it is almost Shalimar-like in feel, with orange replacing the lemon. There's a little spice, a little wood, some sweet amber & a subtle touch of civet in the heart. After an hour, the vanilla & tonka bean add more sweetness, & it dries down to a sweet, woody-musky base. The projection is low, & three hours in it fades very close to the skin, but lasts overall around nine hours.

    l have read some reviews comparing this to Obsession, but l find this one much lighter even than the discontinued Sheer version, which l am am fortunate to own a bottle of. l also don't get the chocolate note that many have mentioned. A very nice, warm oriental nonetheless, if a little too quiet for my taste.

    - - - Updated - - -

    l realise it is now October, but l tried this one on Saturday, during the downtime; L'Eau Ambree by Prada.

    l get a faint whiff of citrus in the opening, followed by a soapy, dry & powdery amber. This is a very light & soft amber that doesn't really develop, except for a touch more sweetness in the base. lt never becomes syrupy or cloying however, & although it seems to stay close to the skin, it gives off subtle wafts of a very pleasant kind every so often, fading out after around six hours.

    A little too simple & quiet for me to really love it, but l think this would this would make a very "office-appropriate" fragrance, & l'm sure it would be most unlikely to offend anyone.

    Someone please feel free to start the October thread!
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

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