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  1. #1

    Default Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Just wondering what everyone's favorite is, from this obscure house? I think BR is better than Gap, Hollister, A&F, and most of the mall stores, in terms of fragrances.

    That said.. I have tried most of the older stuff, but not stuff from the past 7 years. I've tried/owned: Classic, Slate, Cordovan, Black Walnut. Slate I can't remember much, I really need to retry that one. Black Walnut is my favorite, but hard to find the right time to wear it, it's a lovely boozy fragrance. The Icon collection looks interesting, but too overpriced. Slate Fraiche looks unique in the notes, but the reviews are pretty underwhelming. I am currently on the verge of blind buying Modern and possibly Republic of Men, though i feel this one may smell cheap. Anybody tried these 2? Or in general, opinions on BR frags, especially those from the last 7 years or so? Thanks
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  2. #2
    hednic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    The only of the several I have tried over the years that I thought was interesting was Cordovan, a pleasant aromatic woody scent.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Black Walnut is my absolute fave. Glad my bottle will last, but I would back it up if I found a big bottle cheap.

    Republic of Men struck me as a modernization of Black Walnut, with a touch of fruity stuff.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Wore Oud Mosaic the other day for my SOTD. Really quite nice and got surprising performance from it.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by Redneck Perfumisto View Post
    Black Walnut is my absolute fave. Glad my bottle will last, but I would back it up if I found a big bottle cheap.

    Republic of Men struck me as a modernization of Black Walnut, with a touch of fruity stuff.
    Interesting..

    BW was and on and off love for me, but ya, it's definitely the best from the house imo. I almost screwed up and sold my big bottle in a lot on Ebay recently, but then I removed it, and revised it after giving the fragrance another shot. Turned out that it's discontinued anyways, and the prices are starting to shoot up. It's still probably one of my most least worn fragrances, but I get a thrill about owning discontinued stuff, I dunno why, it makes it more special lol.

    I think if it cooled down more I would gravitate to it more. It reminds me of a less wearable Zirh Corduroy, which is also somehting I've been stocking up on, as I feel it's going to be discontinued, if it hasn't already been, as I find Corduroy to be one the best gems out there.
    "Where there's gold, there's a gold digger" -Dashboard Confessional

  6. #6

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    BTW @RP.. I just saw on Ebay, they have quite an abundance of BW big bottles for around 23 shipped. I think I paid 25 shipped for mine about a year ago.
    "Where there's gold, there's a gold digger" -Dashboard Confessional

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ivory88 View Post
    Wore Oud Mosaic the other day for my SOTD. Really quite nice and got surprising performance from it.
    This one gets a lot of props, and it's by Claude Dir, who does great work. I'm not huge on oud, but this one has a good reputation for excellence in the non-oud facets, so I'm keeping my eye on it!

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cologneist View Post
    BTW @RP.. I just saw on Ebay, they have quite an abundance of BW big bottles for around 23 shipped. I think I paid 25 shipped for mine about a year ago.
    NICE. Will keep watching. Thanks for the tip!
    There is no beauty / That cannot be more abused / To beauty's effect.
    / blog:// https://cologniac.com / raging for the machines
    Currently wearing: Wanted by Night by Azzaro

  8. #8

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Love Black Walnut, been wearing it since it came out. Pretty sure there's Iris in it although not listed, it's very prominent in the recent formulations. Been trying to find similar fragrances as well in that category. Any suggestions would be sweet. L'homme Sage is really quite close--whereas costume national, which I've seen it compared to isn't quite as enjoyable.

    Slate was kind of weak and metallic, didn't care for it. Cordovan was just okay for me. The newest from the line look great, can't wait to try them especially Oud Mosaic.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cologneist View Post
    I think if it cooled down more I would gravitate to it more. It reminds me of a less wearable Zirh Corduroy, which is also somehting I've been stocking up on, as I feel it's going to be discontinued, if it hasn't already been, as I find Corduroy to be one the best gems out there.
    Oo I'm gonna snag me a bottle, then

  10. #10

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    I snagged a bottle of Neroli Woods at Marshalls recently and came away impressed. Comparisons abound to Neroli Portofino, but, if you can believe it, Neroli Woods is actually more Tom Ford-y than Neroli Portofino, a linear neroli bomb with a dark woody backdrop that puts it right in line with the TF Private Blend aesthetic (both in quality of ingredients and general composition). If it'd been released as a Neroli Portofino flanker, nobody would bat an eye.

    We often seen mid-tier and lower-tier designers following the trajectory of the luxury brands, but usually the shortcuts and compromises are pretty evident. What makes Neroli Woods impressive is that it so fully embodies the "luxury" fragrance aesthetic (right down to the lovely, hefty bottle and elegant packaging, which are pretty top-notch) to the point where it actually renders that aesthetic better than most of the fragrances in that segment!

    I was impressed enough that I went down to my local BR outlet to try to get my nose on more of their offerings but they didn't have any of the fragrance line out to sample. It sounds like I need to try Black Walnut if I can.
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  11. #11
    Dependent Danny Mitchell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    I see Classic, Modern Man, Slate, and several others at TJ Maxx and Marshall's. Been wanting to try some of these as they're only $20 each or less.
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  12. #12

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Good 'fallback' House if you can't make up your mind about stupidly priced 'niche'

    BW is a 'standout'

  13. #13

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Since this topic I have tried several more. Vintage Green which I find repulsive, and still own a bottle, and can't seem to get rid of it. Easily one of the most disgusting things I've ever smelled. there's nothing vintage or green about it either. The result of being succumbed to Youtube hype. The PR from BR must have reached out to all the Youtube reviewers at once and said to push the same frag, so it looked legit. you'll see this happen from time to time, like how Jeremy does with that Moschino frag, getting girls to say it's their favorite, it actually makes me laugh LOL. I feel the same was done in 2017/2018 with Vintage Green, it got hyped all at the same time by multiple reviewers. Ok that rant over. Ya vintage Green sucks, mistakes were made, and we move on.

    But, Banana Republic Modern is quite good. A nice aquatic, which is aptly named, as it has a modern twist. It's not boring and calone heavy like many aquatics, the bottle is nice too, and batches the classy Banana Republic feel. I might even wear this one today.
    "Where there's gold, there's a gold digger" -Dashboard Confessional

  14. #14

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Need to revisit Neroli Woods. @Brooks from your description sounds like something I'd like. Confused as the last skin test I had I came away 'meh' - maybe my skin, maybe bad bottle - got a sticky cheap sweet vibe that was like 4711 nouvelle cologne ?
    Hmmm interesting. Sounds like a house to explore as you know by now I'm all about the underdog!@
    Currently wearing: Polo by Ralph Lauren

  15. #15

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Oud Mosaic and Vintage Green by far.
    Honourable mention: Classic and M

  16. #16

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ifti View Post
    Need to revisit Neroli Woods. @Brooks from your description sounds like something I'd like. Confused as the last skin test I had I came away 'meh' - maybe my skin, maybe bad bottle - got a sticky cheap sweet vibe that was like 4711 nouvelle cologne ?
    Hm! I don't get sticky sweetness from Neroli Woods (not really a fan of sticky-sweet scents in general). There's a floral sweetness coming straight from the neroli, but I don't sense added sugar. It's a smooth composition, and the synthwoods (which seem derived from some of the same aromachems that TF uses throughout his fragrance line) are dry and dark.

    I do, however, get a very synth/syrupy vibe from the opening of Ferrari Bright Neroli, which I don't enjoy all that much.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    I read about Neroli Woods here at basenotes and got a large decant of it and like it a lot.
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  18. #18
    Basenotes Junkie jkonick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    I picked up 15 ml bottles of Neroli Woods and Cypress Cedar today. Really impressed considering they were $9 each on sale. Neroli Woods is a dead ringer for Neroli Portofino. Cypress Cedar is surprisingly close to Terre d'Hermes, although with a warmer, softer base. The top notes are pretty similar though. Lots of Iso E Super and bitter citrus (grapefruit/orange). They had a 75 ml bottle of Cypress Cedar for $18 too, might go back and pick that up. The only downside is that they don't seem to last very long at all - like an hour or two, and I get very little projection from them. Even so, they don't smell cheap or synthetic, so I can deal with performance issues at that price.

    I also tried Vintage Green which I actually liked. Would've picked up a bottle but it wasn't on sale. It had a Creed vibe, close to something like Original Vetiver, and even seemed to have an approximation of the Creed ambergris base. @The_Cologneist, I'd be happy to take that bottle off your hands

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  19. #19

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by jkonick View Post
    I picked up 15 ml bottles of Neroli Woods and Cypress Cedar today. Really impressed considering they were $9 each on sale. Neroli Woods is a dead ringer for Neroli Portofino. Cypress Cedar is surprisingly close to Terre d'Hermes, although with a warmer, softer base. The top notes are pretty similar though. Lots of Iso E Super and bitter citrus (grapefruit/orange). They had a 75 ml bottle of Cypress Cedar for $18 too, might go back and pick that up. The only downside is that they don't seem to last very long at all - like an hour or two, and I get very little projection from them. Even so, they don't smell cheap or synthetic, so I can deal with performance issues at that price.

    I also tried Vintage Green which I actually liked. Would've picked up a bottle but it wasn't on sale. It had a Creed vibe, close to something like Original Vetiver, and even seemed to have an approximation of the Creed ambergris base. @The_Cologneist, I'd be happy to take that bottle off your hands
    That's a good deal! Where did you get those for $9? I recently have became interested in Banana Republic scents but strangely enough, they don't sell them on their website!

  20. #20
    Basenotes Junkie jkonick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by FragManCLE View Post
    That's a good deal! Where did you get those for $9? I recently have became interested in Banana Republic scents but strangely enough, they don't sell them on their website!
    They were in the sale section of their store in Seattle. Seems like they might be discontinuing Cypress Cedar and Neroli Woods because there were lots of those on the 75% off shelves.

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  21. #21

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    I get about as much longevity/projection from Neroli Woods as I do from Neroli Portofino, which is to say it wears very close to the skin but with six or so proper sprays on the backs of your forearms it will have decent enough presence and even after the initial hour or so you'll get occasional reminders it's still hanging on.

    Ferrari Bright Neroli has stronger presence, but it's not as well-made or expensive-smelling as either.
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  22. #22
    Basenotes Junkie jkonick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brooks Otterlake View Post
    I get about as much longevity/projection from Neroli Woods as I do from Neroli Portofino, which is to say it wears very close to the skin but with six or so proper sprays on the backs of your forearms it will have decent enough presence and even after the initial hour or so you'll get occasional reminders it's still hanging on.

    Ferrari Bright Neroli has stronger presence, but it's not as well-made or expensive-smelling as either.
    Yeah the Neroli Woods seems stronger than the Cypress Cedar. My notes here are based on about four sprays to my forearm. I'll definitely overspray when I give it a full wearing.

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  23. #23

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?



    Neroli Woods would be my favorite BR fragrance by far.
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  24. #24
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Leather Reserve is my favorite. It sort of reminds me of Hermès Vetiver Tonka.

    I also own and enjoy (in the following order): Oud Mosaic, Neroli Woods, and Black Platinum. For the price they sell at the discounters, I’d snatch up any from the Icon Collection save Pure White.

    Another from the brand that I find good is Classic. It’s simple, unisex, and the performance is light, but it’s a nice shower fresh scent for days when you don’t want a fragrance to wear you.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by NettyYeti View Post
    Leather Reserve is my favorite. It sort of reminds me of Hermès Vetiver Tonka.

    I also own and enjoy (in the following order): Oud Mosaic, Neroli Woods, and Black Platinum. For the price they sell at the discounters, I’d snatch up any from the Icon Collection save Pure White.

    Another from the brand that I find good is Classic. It’s simple, unisex, and the performance is light, but it’s a nice shower fresh scent for days when you don’t want a fragrance to wear you.
    I was curious about the Leather and Oud offerings, but they didn't have them in store. Agreed on the Pure White though - found it to be overly chemical-mess clean-musky.

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  26. #26
    Basenotes Institution Darjeeling's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    I’ve only tried Neroli Woods, but this is the best budget Neroli Portofino clone. Bright Neroli has more presence thanks to its patchouli and vetiver base, but I find bright neroli to be more similar to ADP Essenza.
    Clean’s Aqua Neroli is a bit closer to NP, but not as cheap as Neroli Woods. When I can be bothered I’ll do a side by side sampling of Neroli Woods, Aqua Neroli and Neroli Portofino.
    1. No, never blind buy (I do, but do as I say, not as I do. I'm taking no responsibility for your fragrance gambling).
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  27. #27

    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Seems like Neroli Woods is unanimously loved.

    Though if it's a clone of NP, isn't that just a clone of 4711? So if I have 4711, no point in trying either of these? I feel that neroli dominated frags can only be done so many ways. Those with neroli, or orange blossom as dominant notes all play off one another. they all seem at least 75% similar to the next.
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  28. #28
    Basenotes Junkie jkonick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cologneist
    Though if it's a clone of NP, isn't that just a clone of 4711? So if I have 4711, no point in trying either of these? I feel that neroli dominated frags can only be done so many ways. Those with neroli, or orange blossom as dominant notes all play off one another. they all seem at least 75% similar to the next.
    Good point. The only other neroli-centric fragrance I have is Mugler Cologne, which is a bit more soapy and soft than NP/NW/4711. I find the style of the latter three to be a bit sharper, i.e. with the lavender in NP. But given the relative similarities, I'll probably always go with NW or 4711 over NP simply due to price.

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  29. #29
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cologneist View Post
    Seems like Neroli Woods is unanimously loved.

    Though if it's a clone of NP, isn't that just a clone of 4711? So if I have 4711, no point in trying either of these? I feel that neroli dominated frags can only be done so many ways. Those with neroli, or orange blossom as dominant notes all play off one another. they all seem at least 75% similar to the next.
    Yes in general but in my books there are some exceptions (and also making a distinction here between neroli and orange blossom) -

    Fleurs d'Oranger (orange blossom)
    Seville A L'Aube (orange blossom)
    Neroli Intense (neroli)
    Eau des Sens (I smell a mix, not sure about listed notes)
    Neroli Outrenoir (neroli)

    But yeah, I agree, the smell is dominant.

    I'd cite Cap Neroli and Neroli Intense as two very nice neroli perfumes that are quite different from Neroli Portofino, Cologne Indelebile etc. But just a caveat in case you're curious about any of these, I can't imagine you loving any of these, maybe except for Eau des Sens.

    I've tried Neroli Woods, it's a nice/okay (let's say 3 out of 5) simple neroli concoction in my books. Can't vouch for sillage and longevity.

    By the way, I've tried 4711 as well (together with Aspen and a bunch of cheapies, may long live the drugstores of Montreal!), you might want to try Cologne Sologne if you haven't. You might not find it bottle worthy, but it's the finest neroli cologne (eau de cologne) I've smelled till date. I think it uses essential oil from Tunisian neroli. Actually it is quite cheap if you buy the 1 litre bottle (but only available in France).
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  30. #30
    Basenotes Institution Darjeeling's Avatar
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    Default Re: Favorite Banana Republic Frag?

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cologneist View Post
    Seems like Neroli Woods is unanimously loved.

    Though if it's a clone of NP, isn't that just a clone of 4711? So if I have 4711, no point in trying either of these? I feel that neroli dominated frags can only be done so many ways. Those with neroli, or orange blossom as dominant notes all play off one another. they all seem at least 75% similar to the next.
    Neroli Portofino isn’t really a clone or stronger version of 4711 to my nose. YMMV if you find them all 75% similar. In which case, stick with 4711 if the differences don’t matter to you and you don’t want a bit of extra longevity.
    1. No, never blind buy (I do, but do as I say, not as I do. I'm taking no responsibility for your fragrance gambling).
    2. Get them both. You're a Basenoter and you know you're going to end up purchasing them both eventually.
    3. Yes, it has been reformulated.
    4. Looking for a signature scent? You've come to the wrong place.
    Currently wearing: Bright Neroli by Ferrari




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