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  1. #1

    Default what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Are there certain notes which you regularly struggle to detect in a fragrance?

    My nose isn't very good to start with, but I especially struggle with woody notes; cedar, sandalwood , etc.
    I have to turn to frags like wonderwood to get any woods.

  2. #2
    Basenotes Junkie mossyoakpenn's Avatar
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Usually, for me, I have trouble with certain fragrances. I can pick up most notes in most fragrances but there are a few fragrances which elude my nose. LIDGE, Aventus, and Jubilation 25 are three of them.

    On the other hand, certain notes take a baseball bat to my nose. Patchouli, oakmoss, and certain leathers seem to jump out at me.

  3. #3
    Basenotes Institution sjg3839's Avatar
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Patchouli sometimes.
    Currently wearing: Memoir Man by Amouage

  4. #4
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Juniper berries for me

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  5. #5

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Honestly, if I'm familiar with the way a certain ingredient smells, I can usually pick it up. At the same time, not every note in the pyramid is smelled in the fragrance. Tea is a bit of a weird note, I find it doesn't really have much of a smell, but adds more of a dimension to a scent.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    I'm like JiveHippo, I can't smell tea notes most of the time.

    Also musks. Many of them I do not smell at all.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeperez23 View Post
    Also musks. Many of them I do not smell at all.
    Absolutely! That's the answer to this thread. I've smelled musk in tons of fragrances, and I still don't know what it smells like. I could never detect it in a fragrance.
    Last edited by JiveHippo; 7th February 2014 at 12:47 AM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    I have trouble with any fragrance that has a lot of Iso-E Super. I can barely smell TdH and Hermes Voyage at all.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Jasmine...seems every frag has it in their pyramid, but cannot detect it.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by JiveHippo View Post
    Absolutely! That's the answer to this thread. I've smelled musk in tons of fragrances, and I still don't know what is smells like. I could never detect it in a fragrance.
    Musks, of one kind or another, are present in most perfumes.
    Some are sweet, some floral, some berry-like, some a bit spicy-woody, some powdery, some anise like, etc etc.
    Galaxolide, for example, is a commonly used musk and once you are familiar with it, you'll notice it everywhere.
    Last edited by gandhajala; 6th February 2014 at 03:52 PM.

  11. #11

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    I suppose the truth is that fragrances rarely have prominent single notes -- they use accords. So patchouli mixed with birch tar would be almost impossible to isolate and identify. It's sort of the same with say bergamot and neroli -- for me anyway.

    I'm ok with Amber, Sandalwood, Iris and obvious notes like mint and licorice but that's probably it.

    Luca Turin says he can identify a 'spinach' note in L'ame D'un Heros by Geurlain -- well I'm f....ed if I can

  12. #12
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Not really one note in particular but the so called precious stuff..
    Indonesian sandalwood
    Brazilian Cedar

    Are these really different from a tree in Iowa?

  13. #13

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Pepper. Never seems to smell like pepper to me.

  14. #14
    Basenotes Member CASUAL's Avatar
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony T View Post
    Not really one note in particular but the so called precious stuff..
    Indonesian sandalwood
    Brazilian Cedar

    Are these really different from a tree in Iowa?

    Lol, what if they used the same trees for everything. I doubt it but what if? One day I would like to be able to distinguish different woods, I do pick them up though.

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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony T View Post
    Not really one note in particular but the so called precious stuff..
    Indonesian sandalwood

    Are these really different from a tree in Iowa?
    Way different, Tony. Indonesia is from the Far East and therefore stuff from there are exotic and hence smell way better.

    LOL

  16. #16
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Certain musks, most definitely.


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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Leather never ever smells like real leather. I get some of the leather accords but none smell like the real deal.
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Definitely patchouli.(although my GF never has a problem letting me know Also some muskys as well.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    For me it’s ISO E Super. I cannot smell perfumes at all if they contain a lot of ISO E Super. First experience was with Dirty English from Juicy Couture. It’s supposed to be a spicy fragrance, but it was like I sprayed water on my arm. After a while it started to sting my eyes and nose, but I still could not smell anything. Had a similar experience with Narciso Rodriguez For Him, but here I could smell some sweet at least. Both times I also got a headache. I can’t understand why ISO E Super is legal to use.

    I also have problems with musk. A friend gave me Alyssa Ashley Musk to try because he loved it so much, but I could hardly smell anything, and what I did smell made me a little queasy. Still trying to approach some musk fragrances, but haven’t had much luck. Tried Musc Ravageur from Frederic Malle a few times, and while I enjoy the dry down more, it’s still very challenging.

    What I do smell easily is anything sweet. The sweetness hit me like a brick every time. But then I have a sweet tooth to.

  20. #20

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    I don't seem to pick up on Sandalwood. Musk is also tricky because it seems to be in so many forms and smell differently.

    Also ambergris is not something I can smell because I have no previous association with it, considering what it is I would be surprised if many people have smelt this in its natural state. I can smell Creed drydowns but I cannot pick out any individual notes.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    I have trouble defining oakmoss as a note. I have it in the form essential oil and it actually smells quite putrid.
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  22. #22
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Musks, definitely. Most of them I don't get at all, but in some fragrances I can definitely tell there's musk - just don't ask me to describe the note. It still eludes me.

    Also, some variations of sandalwood, if you can believe it. Some fragrances I picked up that were supposed to be sandalwood heavy, I get absolutely no sandalwood from whatsoever (Tam Dao EDT and EDP = cedar bombs, no sandalwood in sight. C&E Sandalwood EDT = nice soapy vibe, also no sandalwood in sight). A few days ago I ordered some mysore sandalwood attar oils from India and Malaysia to see if I can learn more about the real thing, and get to know sandalwood more.

  23. #23

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Musks. Narciso Rodriguez Musc for her is a faint whisper of a fragrance and sometimes I can smell (what I believe is) musk in Musc Nomade, but it usually just smells like chicken soup.
    Currently wearing: Kiss me Tender by Nicolaï

  24. #24
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by gmstrack View Post
    Narciso Rodriguez Musc for her
    Oh yes, Narciso Rodriguez for Him - same issue. All I get is a wet concrete note from it. No redeeming qualities. Gave it away.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Iso super E. People swear every fragrance is loaded with it, but I still don't know what it smells like. Also benzoin, can't make that out either

  26. #26

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rüssel View Post
    Pepper. Never seems to smell like pepper to me.
    Opus 1870 & Bang smell like traditional pepper (black). But sometimes perfumers use pink pepper which doesn't smell like black pepper.
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  27. #27

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    I know that anosmia is lack of functioning olfaction, for example, not being able to detect certain musks.
    On the other hand, not being able to pick out an accord in a composition might be an entirely different situation. About six months ago I suddenly realized that rose accord is everywhere and now I recognize it in several perfumes--CdG EDP = rose bomb. Pepper is another accord that often eludes me; I can sniff a fragrance several times and not detect pepper and then then one day--wham, pepper detection.
    Currently wearing: Kiss me Tender by Nicolaï

  28. #28

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Oud, in almost any fragrance, simple because I have too little olfactory experience with it.
    Currently wearing: Halston 1-12 by Halston

  29. #29

    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    M7 has a reputation as a powerhouse, yet I find it to be quite feeble (this includes vintage M7).
    This suggests I must be anosmic to whatever is creating the perception of power to other Basenoters.
    Perhaps it is the "oud" used by YSL? Not really sure...

  30. #30
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    Default Re: what notes do you struggle to detect?

    Quote Originally Posted by musky_monkey View Post
    M7 has a reputation as a powerhouse
    Hmm, I've never heard it described as such... M7 is pretty soft and very low key actually. It's an awesome fragrance, but a powerhouse scent it definitely is not.

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