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  1. #1

    Default Niche frags that are a must?

    So I'm really trying to build up my collection. I currently only have designer fragrances and was wondering if people could tell me which niche fragrances are viewed as an absolute must and the scent/quality cannot be found in any designer fragrance.

    I don't care to own or spend money on any niche fragrance unless there is no designer fragrance that it can be equally substituted for.

    I'm talking all-time great niche fragrances that are 10/10 scents and I will never find a designer fragrance close to the level of complexity or quality. Not fragrances that are just viewed as good.

    Please no one who feels they are better than others for wearing mostly niche fragrances lol. Unbiased replies only please!

    Currently I own:

    Dior Homme Intense
    Gucci Pour Homme II
    Terre D'Hermes
    Carven Homme
    Bentley Intense
    Michael Jordan Legend
    Ed Hardy Love & Luck

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Most Amouage are really unique.

    Serge Lutens is also one of the most respected perfume house. Their offering are unusual, like they are arts.

    Frederic Malle is also another nice house to explore he give the noses unlimited time and budget to create their dream scents so they are extremely gorgeous.

    By the way, it seems that you should avoid Creed & Bond No.9 because many people found some of their offering not original enough
    ***My favourite from my collection***

    -------- Amouage: Tribute Attar, Jubilation XXV, GoldMan
    ------ Serge Lutens: Chêne, Tubéreuse Criminell, Ambre Sultan
    -------- Les Exclusifs de Chanel: Sycamore, Coromandel
    ------ Tom Ford Private Blend: Noir de Noir, Tobacco Vanille
    ------- Hermès: Terre D'Hermès Parfum, Ambre Narguilé
    ------ EDP Frederic Malle: Carnal Flower
    -------- Neela Vermire Creations: Trayee
    ------ Parfum MDCI: Invasion Barbare

  3. #3
    Basenotes Institution dougczar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Creed Jardin d'Amalfi
    Creed Windsor
    Clive Christian 1872
    The Different Company - De Bachmakov
    Neela Vermiere Trayee
    Xerjoff Fars
    SHL 777 - Black Gemstone
    by Kilian Straight to Heaven

    actually there are many more. You really need to dip your toes in and explore.
    Current Summer Favorites:

    1. Xerjoff - Nio
    2. Tom Ford - Rive d’Ambre
    3. Dior - Homme Cologne 2013
    4. The Different Company - De Bachmakov
    5. Armani - Code Sport Athlete
    6. Montale - Aoud Legacy
    7. Dior - Homme Sport 2008
    8. by Kilian - Straight to Heaven
    9. Ermenegildo Zegna - Sicilian Mandarin
    10. Creed - Pure White Cologne

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougczar View Post
    You really need to dip your toes in and explore.
    This.

    Get sampling

  5. #5
    Dependent Wheatstraw2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    After you top a certain price point, there's no difference between niche and "designer". Wear what you like.

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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    The whole point of niche fragrances is that they won't appeal to everyone, they fill a niche. You really need to sample stuff and buy what you like.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Aventus
    L' Air Du Desert Marocain
    Cedrat Boise
    Ambre 114
    Jubilation xxv
    <div class="bnsotd"><b>Currently wearing:</b> <a href="ID26148387.html"><img src="http://www.basenotes.net/photos/products/33/26148387-7393.jpg"> Carven L'Eau Intense by Carven</a></div>

  8. #8
    Dependent MegaMav's Avatar
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Try Kerosene's line, nice, modern appeal.
    My opinions in weblog form: FragranceReviewer.com
    Fragrance Sales: eBay Store

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Montale Aoud & Pine & Monatle Aoud Meloki
    Eutopie # 6
    Sevigne # 2
    Cuir Tabac
    Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Amouage Fate

  11. #11

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Sample sample sample. Etat Libre D'Orange do a discovery pack of their whole line. You might also like to try Andy Tauers fragrances. That might be nice for you.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    I am not in the camp that pits designer against niche. That is irrelevant to my way of thinking, and there are plenty of vintage and limited distribution designers that can hold their own with anything out there.

    That said, here are a few niche offerings still in production or readily available that I consider 10 out of 10, or very close...

    Portrait of a Lady by EdP Frédéric Malle
    Dia Man by Amouage
    Les Nombres d'Or Vetyver by Mona di Orio
    Linfedele Haiku by O'driù
    Supercilium by O'driù
    Oud Shamash by The Different Company
    X for Men by Clive Christian
    Coeur de Vetiver Sacré by L'Artisan
    Incense Oud by By Kilian
    Current Top Ten:
    1) Portrait of a Lady original formula (EdP Frédéric Malle)
    2) Jasmin Antique (Rogue Perfumery)
    3) Giorgio for Men vintage (Giorgio Beverly Hills) - tie
    3) Giorgio V.I.P. Special Reserve (Giorgio Beverly Hills) - tie

    5) Dia pour Homme vintage edt (Amouage)

    6)
    Anat Fritz and its reissue, called Classical (Anat Fritz)
    7) Captain vintage (Molyneux)
    8) Javanese Patchouli (Zegna) - tie
    8) Monsieur de Givenchy vintage (Givenchy) - tie
    8) Polo vintage (Ralph Lauren) - tie

    Currently wearing: Parfum de Peau by Montana

  13. #13

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    No niche frag is really a must, especially in today's depressing market. There's some nice ones you may enjoy basing on your tastes, and some good ones you would 99% find gross at first (like O'Driù for example, something I would not advice to novices). In my opinion, in perfumery, "musts" are first and only vintage ones, that's where you can learn what it means quality - but sadly everyone wants to be cool and discover "niche" first. However obviously to each his own. As other have said: sample, sample and sample. Plenty of websites where you can purchase bags of samples, original or decanted - don't ask for advices, just grab all you can and test it with your nose and your taste.
    ______________________________

    My fragrance reviews | Ye Olde Civet Cat

  14. #14

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wheatstraw2 View Post
    After you top a certain price point, there's no difference between niche and "designer". Wear what you like.
    Quote Originally Posted by dmckean44 View Post
    The whole point of niche fragrances is that they won't appeal to everyone, they fill a niche. You really need to sample stuff and buy what you like.
    Quote Originally Posted by drseid View Post
    I am not in the camp that pits designer against niche. That is irrelevant to my way of thinking, and there are plenty of vintage and limited distribution designers that can hold their own with anything out there.
    ...this...!
    Currently wearing: Équipage by Hermès

  15. #15

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Would also add two further testing suggestions to the variety of great ones already mentioned: Knize Ten, Creed BDP.
    Currently wearing: G. Bellini X-Bolt by Lidl

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    To echo others here, there are no musts in niche, or for that matter, in perfumery in general. It can be good to sniff around to get an idea of what people are referring to ( e.g. sniff Mitsouko and the like ), but if you're happy with what you own then you don't need a niche fragrance. On the other hand, if you wanted to own every niche fragrance that had no direct equivalent in designer, you'd be bogged down in hundreds of bottles you might not actually enjoy.

    I'd recommend taking a different approach: find a note, a line, or a style of fragrance you want to explore and go from there. The nice thing about niche that it more often explores strange territory, and a question like "What smells like a campfire someone threw a bucket of water on?" isn't even a difficult request.

    As ever, sampling with an open mind is always your best friend!

  17. #17

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    I agree with the no musts niches thought. Perhaps there is a "must try" maybe, but even then a lot of stuff ive bought samples of I regret even then and would rather have just read the notes of something else that seemed like I might like and tried that out instead lol.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    No scents are a MUST - but - here's my advice for some fun fun fun. Go to Parfums Raffy online and buy a few Amouage samples. They're official 2.5ml carded samples and they're at great prices. Here are my picks:

    - Interlude Man
    - Memoir Man
    - Epic Man
    - Jubilation XXV
    - Reflection Man
    Current Favorites (in no particular order)
    Castile
    Royal Oud
    Rose 31
    Endymion
    Petit Matin
    Curve
    1725 Casanova
    Tabac Rouge
    Reflection Man
    Green Irish Tweed
    Prada L'Homme
    Tom Ford Extreme
    Les Exclusifs Eau de Cologne
    Tom Ford Noir Eau De Toilette
    Terre d'Hermes Parfum
    Hanae Mori H.M. EDT
    Pomelo Paradis
    Aqua Universalis
    Currently wearing: H.M. by Hanae Mori

  19. #19

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Thank you for the replies. Niche fragrances are hard to find in stores obviously so sampling can get expensive even at only 3$ a pop. I will look into the ones posted here and see what I can find.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Green Irish Tweed
    Ambre Topkapi
    Vetiver Royal Bourbon
    Fetish Pour Homme
    Seasonal rotation:

    1861 Naxos by Xerjoff
    Fetish Pour Homme by Roja Dove
    Amber Absolute by Tom Ford
    Royal English Leather by Creed
    Chypre Palatin by MDCI

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by bugatti View Post
    Thank you for the replies. Niche fragrances are hard to find in stores obviously so sampling can get expensive even at only 3$ a pop. I will look into the ones posted here and see what I can find.
    Oh, but the opposite is even MORE true: one bad buy at niche bottle prices is very expensive. If the cost of sampling is too much, my advice would be to avoid niche entirely and stick to what you can find in stores. The idea that niche is "better" is false and foolish. Better is what you enjoy more. HdP 1725 is niche and I think it's outstanding. TdH Parfum is designer and I think it's outstanding. There are a lot of excellent designer choices, so if the cost of sampling niche is too much, make the most of what you have access to.

    Good luck!
    Current Favorites (in no particular order)
    Castile
    Royal Oud
    Rose 31
    Endymion
    Petit Matin
    Curve
    1725 Casanova
    Tabac Rouge
    Reflection Man
    Green Irish Tweed
    Prada L'Homme
    Tom Ford Extreme
    Les Exclusifs Eau de Cologne
    Tom Ford Noir Eau De Toilette
    Terre d'Hermes Parfum
    Hanae Mori H.M. EDT
    Pomelo Paradis
    Aqua Universalis
    Currently wearing: H.M. by Hanae Mori

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    There are often interesting things, including samples, listed in the Marketplace here so that may be worth keeping an eye on.
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    http://www.basenotes.net/contribute.php

  23. #23

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Masculine line from Maître Parfumeur et Gantier and Caron

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    It can get pretty expensive blind buying niche - I would rather spend £200 on samples than on one bottle that I end up not liking

    Houses that enjoy (after lengthy sampling) are:

    Amouage
    Montale
    Mancera
    Slumberhouse
    Tom Ford Private Blend - not niche as such but expensive

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Maillard View Post
    No niche frag is really a must, especially in today's depressing market. There's some nice ones you may enjoy basing on your tastes, and some good ones you would 99% find gross at first .
    +1

    I've been on a high end niche binge for a few months now. I wanted to "step up to the plate" and only buy amazing heavy hitters regardless of price. I got some nice things but to be honest I had trouble with a few of them.

    My list this month :

    Dior Leather Oud - $224 125ml. Reformulated. I have already documented this on another thread.

    Amouage Opus V1- $355 100ml I have been raving about this perfume since I purchased it last year. I just purchased a new bottle and it just doesn't seem to have the same "kick" the other bottle did. It's nice but it isn't the same IMO

    Italian Cypress- $215 50ml - I freaking loved this scent when I tried it in the past but I couldn't get past the price. I finally broke down but my version is different from other versions I've tried and so on...BATCH VARIATIONS is my belief.

    Tuscan Leather - $295 100ml - BEAUTIFUL and hangs around for a while but it isn't a leather beast on me at all. This has been one of my best purchases. HOWEVER after owning it and smelling testers at different stores I believe their may be batch variations with this as well. I've had different experiences from testing in different stores. ALL GOOD experiences but just different.

    Invasion Barbare- $250 75ml - Lovely scent but after 3 hours it stops projecting then turns into a powdery lavender residue. That might wake up again at some point but nothing as fabulous as the opening. MUST re apply every few hours...bye bye 75 ml !

    Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille - $295 100ml - NICE I am surprised I didn't get this sooner but when I sampled it before I wasn't impressed. Longevity is very good. I find that the honey/vanilla combination works on me (in an animalic way) like a nice strong musk.

    I tried PureDistance M for the 4th time this month and I still don't think its worth the asking price. Average masculine EDT (extrait ?) when compared to average today is mind blowing but you won't get $595 100ml from me.

    Clive Cristian C- Would LOVE to soak my undies in this stuff ! BUT for $375 50ml I am using bleach instead.

    Then I got all pissed off at niche and said NO MORE I will buy designer and walk around with a decanter. I went to a Sephora to look for one I could use that way but NOTHING appealed to me. I ran away in horror at the thought of going back to designer....for now

    Conclusion:

    I spent top dollar this month on a lot of heavy hitters in the NICHE realm. They smelled better than the designers but they too have flaws in the longevity and sillage departments. Not to mention reformulations.

    My advice is to keep your expectations realistic. Nothing is really mind blowing these days in the fragrance biz. There is some good stuff out there but it is easy to find fault with them too.

    I like my Tuscan Leather and my Tobacco Vanille . I could have done without the others.
    Last edited by thatmakesscents; 23rd August 2014 at 09:00 PM.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by thatmakesscents View Post
    I spent top dollar this month on a lot of heavy hitters in the NICHE realm. The smelled better than the designers but they too have flaws in the longevity and sillage departments. Not to mention reformulations.

    My advice is to keep your expectations realistic. Nothing is really mind blowing these days in the fragrance biz. There is some good stuff out there but it is easy to find fault with them too.
    But the niche that you're talking about is really just designer stuff with a higher price tag (which sort of demonstrates that "niche" means nothing these days). Several of them are produced in the same factories as low-end stuff (Tom Ford, Amouage etc.)

    Have you considered looking into the more off-the-radar / indie stuff? For example, have you tried Bogue's MAAI yet? For me, the best stuff can be found outside of "the fragrance biz" but you have to search for it.

    But to respond to the OP, none are a must. I can get more pleasure from a $15 scent from Lush as I can several $1200 scents on the market. Find what appeals to you by reading reviews, sampling whenever possible, and finding out what's available both in and out of the mainstream. It can be a rewarding but pricey hobby!

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Several are for instance Maria Candida Gentile, House of Matriarch, La Via del Profumo, Hilde Soliani, Tiziana Terenzi, Parfumerie Generale, Odori di Firenze, Parfums de Nicolai, Neil Morris, O' Driu', Cale' Fragranze d'Autore, Jul et Mad, Norma Kamali, Floris, Czeck&Speak, Bogue, Cerchi nell'Acqua, Etro, Frapin, Neela Vermeire, Ulrich Lang, Sigilli, Slumberhouse, Histoires de Parfums, Parfums MDCI, Masque, Lorenzo Villoresi, Jovoy, Sonoma Scent Studio......, said all I agree with the great drseid and the fragrances I still prefer are vintage designers or historical maison (Aramis, Guerlain, Caron, Dior, Estee Lauder etc).
    Currently wearing: Lui by Mazzolari

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by thatmakesscents View Post
    I spent top dollar this month on a lot of heavy hitters in the NICHE realm.
    This is not the niche realm. There are no heavy hitters in the niche realm. You buy niche perfumes on indie scent, lucky scent, or directly from the maker.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Montale perfume house , especially Aoud & Pine...gooorgeousss juice
    "Thank GOD for the nose, for without it we would not be enjoying these beautiful created Scents" also Remember "Balance is everything and the key to appreciating "

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Niche frags that are a must?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmckean44 View Post
    You buy niche perfumes on indie scent, lucky scent, or directly from the maker.
    Everything was purchased on LuckyScent Minus the Leather Oud directly from Dior.
    Last edited by thatmakesscents; 23rd August 2014 at 10:57 PM.




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