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  1. #1

    Default Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    I just saw that Zara released a scent called 4MBROX, which apparently is mostly ambrox. When people pass me wearing an ambrox-heavy scent, it impresses me as badly composed, unlike other scents that might not smell that great to the wearer but smell good to those passing by. I wonder if anyone else has developed a strong dislike for that kind of experience, if not outright revulsion to a scent with more than a very small amount of ambroxan. And it ought to be interesting to see when people start complaining about it, as is the case for some other aroma chemicals. At some point, even the general public is likely to get tired of it, or even start to say (if you wear such a scent) that you are wearing a "daddy scent." LOL. Thoughts?

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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Will be interesting where the ambroxan fragrances end up, I’ve been enjoying Sauvage EDT lately. The reviews for Sauvage are all over the place with women and men, some women swear they would never want to smell that on a man. Some men find it a chemical mess while others find it excellent, some women go crazy over it. The ambroxan note when used correctly can be nice, it varies fragrance to fragrance but it seems to be full steam ahead currently in fragrances. In 15-30 years will it be considered (old-man) not sure as fragrances are always evolving and who knows what will be big and popular then. It usually comes off clean so it should age well, only time will tell if it will be timeless and still modern.

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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    I think you know ambroxon only by a few scents that use it as the majority note of the composition; I think that in well balanced perfumes that you do not even tell it is there. I think that the disregard for ambroxon come simply because a few mainstream scents have used it in excess and now it is an obsession with not liking it simply to try and signal you're more sophisticated than that. Somewhat akin to Armani Acqua di Gio and aquatics being hated. I am sure if you lived at this age in the period of oakmoss everywhere you'd hate that too based on one or two perfumes using it in a distasteful way.

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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    I already get choked up in clouds of Sauvage (which also has norlimbanol), Invictus, Aventus, and Y by Yves Saint Laurent as it is. By comparison, someone laying on a mossy old fougère or too much musk might come across as gauche or rude, but I've never ACTUALLY CHOKED on anything until the prevalence of synthetic ambergris and woods came about. Hell, Acqua di Giò Absolu Instinct (2019) actually triggered an asthma attack and NO fragrance has ever done that before.
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    No strong dislike for me with ambroxon yet.
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by CutSmut View Post
    I think you know ambroxon only by a few scents that use it as the majority note of the composition; I think that in well balanced perfumes that you do not even tell it is there. I think that the disregard for ambroxon come simply because a few mainstream scents have used it in excess and now it is an obsession with not liking it simply to try and signal you're more sophisticated than that. Somewhat akin to Armani Acqua di Gio and aquatics being hated. I am sure if you lived at this age in the period of oakmoss everywhere you'd hate that too based on one or two perfumes using it in a distasteful way.
    I agree that ambroxan can be used judiciously and smell great, giving off a convincing ambergris base note, and I also agree that heavy amounts of oakmoss were abused the way ambrox and norlimbanol are now. As an aside, have you noticed that these heavy-handed bases (regardless of material) more often than not come from the male-market designer releases?
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zealot Crusader View Post
    As an aside, have you noticed that these heavy-handed bases (regardless of material) more often than not come from the male-market designer releases?
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    It's just a fad. It'll pass, just as every other fad eventually does.

    Think back on the 90s when scent after scent abusing calone flooded the shelves. Before that, it was oakmoss. Now, it's norlimbanol and also ambroxan. Eventually, something else will be the next big thing where a few scents do it well, followed by a ton of cash grab releases do it badly but quickly.

    The same thing happens in music, and movies, and books, and TV shows. Hell, it happens with phones and apps too. When somebody creates a new thing and finds success, a ton of lame cash grab copying and following will come next. It happens every time. It doesn't even matter what industry we're talking about.

    It's a truism that there are always more followers than innovators.
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    I don’t believe so. I believe that it’s possibly being blamed for other aspects of compositions inducing harsh reactions with people. Ambroxan has been used in fragrances since the 50’s, as a substitute for the real deal, but now it suddenly is at risk of being a problem? And Zara isn’t the first to pull this Ambroxan dominant move. My wife has a fragrance from Juliet Has A Gun named Not A Perfume. The top, heart and base notes are all Ambroxan/Cetalox. It’s advertised in stores, like Sephora, as a fragrance you can wear if you’re typically sensitive to fragrances. Juliet says, “Another advantage of this particular composition, is that it is entirely allergen free.” For whatever that marketing statement is worth. What I can tell you from personal experience is that it’s a pleasant and mild fragrance that doesn’t offend anyone she’s worn it around. I find it pleasant enough but at risk to bore someone to death. I’ve witnessed people ask her what she’s wearing because they want to get some - since they’re highly allergic to fragrances but not the one she’s wearing.

    So is Ambroxan the real culprit here? Maybe. I don’t truly know. But I do think we should be cautious about singling it out as the culprit just because a fragrance may be dominant with it. We need to make sure there’s not something else going on that could be causing issues otherwise we’re at risk of not being far off from another old mentality..... “burn the witch!”
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diddy View Post
    I don’t believe so. I believe that it’s possibly being blamed for other aspects of compositions inducing harsh reactions with people. Ambroxan has been used in fragrances since the 50’s, as a substitute for the real deal, but now it suddenly is at risk of being a problem? And Zara isn’t the first to pull this Ambroxan dominant move. My wife has a fragrance from Juliet Has A Gun named Not A Perfume. The top, heart and base notes are all Ambroxan/Cetalox. It’s advertised in stores, like Sephora, as a fragrance you can wear if you’re typically sensitive to fragrances. Juliet says, “Another advantage of this particular composition, is that it is entirely allergen free.” For whatever that marketing statement is worth. What I can tell you from personal experience is that it’s a pleasant and mild fragrance that doesn’t offend anyone she’s worn it around. I find it pleasant enough but at risk to bore someone to death. I’ve witnessed people ask her what she’s wearing because they want to get some - since they’re highly allergic to fragrances but not the one she’s wearing.

    So is Ambroxan the real culprit here? Maybe. I don’t truly know. But I do think we should be cautious about singling it out as the culprit just because a fragrance may be dominant with it. We need to make sure there’s not something else going on that could be causing issues otherwise we’re at risk of not being far off from another old mentality..... “burn the witch!”
    +1

    Sauvage is a perfect example. I strongly suspect that what most people think is ambroxan in Sauvage is actually whatever Dior is using as... uhm... well, as a fixative or, perhaps more accurately, a... thickener? There's something in Sauvage that makes the scent radiate out in a thick way. I don't quite know how to describe it. Sauvage reminds me of when I lived in Dallas. In summer, when the air is blisteringly hot, restaurants use misters to make the outdoor seating comfortable. I'd never lived anywhere so hot and dry before, so the first few times, it was kind of jarring. The air would go from being so hot and dry to being cooler, heavier and wet. Step away from the misters and the air is hot and dusty dry again. Sauvage reminds me of that. If you're standing in line and somebody wearing a lot of Acqua Di Gio gets in line behind you, the air will smell like AdG. But if you're standing in line and somebody wearing a lot of Sauvage gets in line behind you, the air will smell like Sauvage, but it will also feel unnaturally thick, and it's... well... it's gross.

    Some Parfums De Marly scents have a similar aspect to them. Whatever the heck it is, it's very chemical, and it's aggravating. It's like an olfactory version of an air raid siren wrapped in a cloud. And it's definitely not ambroxan. I'm not saying there's no ambroxan in Sauvage. I'm saying the loudness of Sauvage that can be so grating isn't ambroxan. It's a fixative being used to extend the life of the scent, and to make it unnaturally heavy.
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  11. #11
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    I’m pleased to see that ambroxan has succeeded to the iso e super crown of being blamed for everything anyone hates in just about any scent.
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  12. #12

    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Irrespective if due to allergies or a more subjective dislike with little or no medical causes for it, can somewhat relate to this perception towards ambrox.
    Even if ambrox not did not cause any extreme personal reactions caused yet, did experience at the very least some disinterest or moderate dislike towards it-can imagine both types of less favorable reactions becoming more commonplace in future, especially as this note continues to remain bestselling and become increasingly commonplace.

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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darjeeling View Post
    I’m pleased to see that ambroxan has succeeded to the iso e super crown of being blamed for everything anyone hates in just about any scent.
    The scapegoat is dead, long live the scapegoat.
    Was thinking this very thing, couldn’t have put it any better!

  14. #14

    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darjeeling View Post
    I’m pleased to see that ambroxan has succeeded to the iso e super crown of being blamed for everything anyone hates in just about any scent.
    The scapegoat is dead, long live the scapegoat.
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Indeed, I don’t think it’s ambroxan itself that’s the issue, but its use in huge, overly diffusive and tenacious woody-amber bases, usually along with other chemicals like norlimbanol. On its own, ambroxan isn’t unpleasant (at least to me): it’s sort of sheer and woodsy and when I smell it alone it reminds me of half of Comme des Garçons catalog (hah!), but it also quickly becomes overwhelming and annoying in any quantity. I know that various compositions I enjoy make use of it well, so the note itself isn’t kryptonite to me (there’s a floral musk that is, however, but that’s another thread). But it can so, so easily be abused. I’m thinking of a few Le Labo compositions, like Thé Noir or the new Tabac 28. In those cases the ambroxan locks in with other tenacious chemicals and turns my stomach. It’s too much.

    Whatever’s going on in Sauvage, ambroxan is only one player among several. The trail of Sauvage is far too huge, and to me smells horribly chemical and a lot like walking through the Kleenex and toilet paper aisle in a drug store — it’s truly bad and the opposite of sexy — but it doesn’t smell simply like ambroxan. It’s been “freshened up,” but again in the way a chlorine pool smells “fresh.”

    That said, I’ve also walked through clouds of straight-up ambroxan here and there while downtown, so it’s probably fair to say it’s a “note of the moment.” I’m definitely among those eager for this fad to pass.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diddy View Post
    My wife has a fragrance from Juliet Has A Gun named Not A Perfume. The top, heart and base notes are all Ambroxan/Cetalox... What I can tell you from personal experience is that it’s a pleasant and mild fragrance that doesn’t offend anyone she’s worn it around. I find it pleasant enough but at risk to bore someone to death. I’ve witnessed people ask her what she’s wearing because they want to get some - since they’re highly allergic to fragrances but not the one she’s wearing.

    So is Ambroxan the real culprit here? Maybe. I don’t truly know. But I do think we should be cautious about singling it out as the culprit just because a fragrance may be dominant with it. We need to make sure there’s not something else going on that could be causing issues otherwise we’re at risk of not being far off from another old mentality..... “burn the witch!”
    This is all very true. My daughter happens to like Not A Perfume: so, I'm familiar with it. And, I find it subtle and quite nice. As indicated, Not A Perfume is made from just one ingredient: Ambroxan/Cetalox. If you want to know exactly how this ingredient smells and gets experienced, smell Not A Perfume.

    I agree with those in this thread suggesting responsibility is being misdirected to Ambroxan/Cetalox.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Style trends, in clothing as well as in fragrance, always hit a point of extreme excess before the trend collapses. We're certainly there with the "chemical stew" freshies.

    Making ambroxan out to be a fragrance bogeyman is misleading. It's a component that can be used well. Like most aromachemicals, its success or failure depends on how it's framed and accented by other components.

    Ambroxan smells fine. I think what folks react to is when ambroxan is combined with other aromachems.
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brooks Otterlake View Post
    Style trends, in clothing as well as in fragrance, always hit a point of extreme excess before the trend collapses. We're certainly there with the "chemical stew" freshies.

    Making ambroxan out to be a fragrance bogeyman is misleading. It's a component that can be used well. Like most aromachemicals, its success or failure depends on how it's framed and accented by other components.

    Ambroxan smells fine. I think what folks react to is when ambroxan is combined with other aromachems.
    I think what most people should refer to as sensitive would be synthetics in general. Not just because something contains ambrox. If something is too synth or it smells cheap, like burnt rubbing alcohol, it can really irritate my senses. But I don't think it's because of the ambroxan, which I generally enjoy.
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Times Turn Around!
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    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    Quote Originally Posted by CutSmut View Post
    I think you know ambroxon only by a few scents that use it as the majority note of the composition; I think that in well balanced perfumes that you do not even tell it is there. I think that the disregard for ambroxon come simply because a few mainstream scents have used it in excess and now it is an obsession with not liking it simply to try and signal you're more sophisticated than that. Somewhat akin to Armani Acqua di Gio and aquatics being hated. I am sure if you lived at this age in the period of oakmoss everywhere you'd hate that too based on one or two perfumes using it in a distasteful way.
    I think what happens with some of us, at least, is that we don't even necessarily detect the aroma chemical for the first wearing or perhaps several wearings, but then it "sticks out like a sore thumb." For example, I didn't notice ambroxan in Lomani's Black Rose until the second or third wearing, but then it seemed really obvious after an hour or two. And once you get to that level of sensitivity, anything with a fairly large amount of it gets perceived as blaring ambroxan (or whatever the aroma chemical in question is).

  21. #21

    Default Re: Will "Ambrox Sensitivity Syndrome" soon become prevalent?

    As others have said, when ambroxan is used judiciously in a fragrance it doesn't bother me. Off the top of my head I can say that I think Acqua di Gio Absolu is an example where it's used well and, although noticeable in the drydown, it doesn't overwhelm the composition. Sauvage EDT on the other hand, is an example where I feel it's been used to overkill and overwhelms the fragrance in a negative way. I'm one of the people who is mostly anosmic to Iso E Super, so I never really had a problem with the overuse of that chemical as I couldn't smell it for the most part. However, I don't have a problem noticing Ambroxan, and when it's overdone it ruins a fragrance for me. I can't speak for other people, but when it's used to overkill a la' Sauvage EDT, it "singes" my nose hairs and comes very close to giving me a headache. Extremely irritating.
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