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  1. #1
    The Devil in the Details
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    Question Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    We use the term "unicorn" to describe anything exceedingly rare or placed out of reach, be it by actual scarcity caused by limited production, or post-discontinuation hype causing aftermarket price inflation etc.

    But for some of us, those "unicorns" aren't actually because we either got our supply before the bottom fell out or before something was axed then FOMO-frenzied into unobtanium. We have our own white whales that were considerably harder to track down, and more precious for it.

    Therefore, I'd like to ask you what scents in your collection were your personal "unicorns"? Which scents did you in particular have to go far above and beyond out of your way to obtain, then place on a pedestal for reasons personal or particular to you? It can be an iteration of something still made, a discontinued fragrance, a single-run artisanal, doesn't matter. What does matter is the story behind why you cherish it, and how you eventually found it.

    Despite what everyone else may think, what is something you consider your most-prized specimen?

    (A good host never goes first, so I'll give my answer once the thread populates some.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Vintage Calvin Klein Obsession For Men, vintage Chanel Pour Monsieur, vintage Eau Sauvage, vintage (I’ll stop) Oscar Pour Lui....
    All for reasons of nostalgia.
    How? Hours and hours and hours of searching online.

  3. #3
    The Devil in the Details
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanG View Post
    Vintage Calvin Klein Obsession For Men, vintage Chanel Pour Monsieur, vintage Eau Sauvage, vintage (I’ll stop) Oscar Pour Lui....
    There's no reason specifically why these are your personal holier-than-holies? No story about how you came to them? Knowing why these are so special to you and how you came to that conclusion are half the fun! C'mon man!
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Vintage Patou Pour Homme (Full bottle of aftershave and many mini bottles of EDT 5ml). Got them on the German site of Ebay, after months of searching. It is a powerful perfume, very very complex, with lots of things happening at all three stages, extremely well blended and balanced, and posessing a lightly sweet kind of smokiness (they say it is from the leather) that I ADORE.

    I love this Unicorn with all my heart and I had high hopes that they were going to recreate it properly. They didn't. Shame on Patou.
    Currently wearing: Black Aoud by Montale

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Profumo di Firenze 1954 Terrarossa.
    Rare, exquisite, exclusive, finely made vetiver in the realm of Givenchy's discontinued Vetyver.

    I own 7 bottles.
    My opinions in weblog form: FragranceReviewer.com
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Mine would have to be EAU DE CHRISTIAN TORTU in the big bottle. I guess I got lucky one day in New York City at Takashimaya (the Tokyo-based department store which had long closed). This was over a decade ago. The other is ABSINTHE (SLATKIN). Acquired similarly. But not in New York City.

    On my wish list is PATOU POUR HOMME, which fetches criminal prices online (sigh)! Though I do have the 2.0 oz. after shave balm. I heard that the later PATOUE POUR HOMME PRIVEE, both by Jean Kerleo, also smells amazing!

    TABAC BLOND (CARON) in the original formulation composed by Ernest Daltroff would have been worth a sniff. Before it got butchered.
    Last edited by pince_nez; 22nd May 2020 at 05:39 PM.
    Currently wearing: Vétiver (new) by Carven

  7. #7
    Sound Scents
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Portrait of a Lady (matte cap original formula bottle) - This one is special not only because it is the best thing I have ever sniffed, but also the story behind my sampling it in the first place. The story is too much to write here (see my review of the perfume in the review section for the details), but it was during a trip to my favorite place on earth... Las Vegas, at what *was* my favorite store, Barneys Las Vegas. I had never spent so much on a bottle of perfume until I got my nose on this one. My sampling experience in Vegas with Portrait of a Lady changed everything.

    The Night - I spent far more money than I should or care to admit on this one, but I was able to have my bottle’s box hand signed by Frederic Malle himself. Only having Ropion sign it too would have made it more dear to me.

    Nombre Noir - Beyond the perfume smelling amazing, it is by far the most I have spent on a per ml basis for a perfume, and had avoided sniffing it for years due to aftermarket cost. I should have kept avoiding it, or so says my wallet... my nose on the other hand is very glad I stopped.

    Lucifer - This wasn’t particularly pricey, but I had never heard of it, buying a bottle from a vintage perfume seller on eBay completely on a whim, just because I liked the name while purchasing something else from the seller. I had heard nothing of the perfume, only to find out it was an amazing combination of vintage Polo, vintage Captain Molyneux, vintage Havana and Balenciaga pour Homme. What a find indeed!
    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


  8. #8
    Dependent AlanG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zealot Crusader View Post
    There's no reason specifically why these are your personal holier-than-holies? No story about how you came to them? Knowing why these are so special to you and how you came to that conclusion are half the fun! C'mon man!
    Sorry ZC. I’m nursing a migraine and having problems thinking clearly.
    I wore these in the early to mid-80’s, coming of age as it were, and starting my love of fragrances. It was just such an innocent and special time, which I look back on fondly.
    (Oh, and I’ll add Polo Green to my list).
    Purchased all of these in Europe (Holland) where I lived for many years.
    Also..........I’m currently living with a woman I dated and lived with back then.
    It’s all sweet memories, and, to quote Carly Simon, “these are the good old days”.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Don’t have any currently but Dior Eau Sauvage Parfum 2012 would be my answer.
    Currently wearing: Polo by Ralph Lauren

  10. #10
    The Devil in the Details
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanG View Post
    Sorry ZC. I’m nursing a migraine and having problems thinking clearly.
    I wore these in the early to mid-80’s, coming of age as it were, and starting my love of fragrances. It was just such an innocent and special time, which I look back on fondly.
    (Oh, and I’ll add Polo Green to my list).
    Purchased all of these in Europe (Holland) where I lived for many years.
    Also..........I’m currently living with a woman I dated and lived with back then.
    It’s all sweet memories, and, to quote Carly Simon, “these are the good old days”.
    That's a beautiful answer! Thank you! Hope your migraine lets up!
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  11. #11
    Dependent AlanG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zealot Crusader View Post
    That's a beautiful answer! Thank you! Hope your migraine lets up!
    Thank you ZC.
    GREAT thread.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by speckmann0706 View Post
    Don’t have any currently but Dior Sauvage Parfum 2012 would be my answer.
    Obviously you mean Eau Sauvage.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    I have a few goodies in my collection. A complete collection of Creed grey caps. Vintage Tabarome. Guerlain Sous Le Vent. Patou Pour Homme. Yohji Yamamoto Pour Homme. I’m good for now. Might have to go shopping tomorrow, though.

    All of these became fragrance acquisition obsessions because A) my wife repeatedly bought me fine fragrances, B) eventually I had such a strong collection that I decided to start researching what I had on hand, C) I found Basenotes, which was sort of like throwing gasoline on my obsessive/compulsive tendencies, and D) it’s a fun, relatively harmless, and most definitely addictive hobby. I got kinda good at it. No apologies.

    Wearing vintage Guerlain Heritage EdT tonight. Did I mention I love luxuriating in fine fragrances?

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by No Scents View Post
    Obviously you mean Eau Sauvage.
    Haha yes!
    Currently wearing: Polo by Ralph Lauren

  15. #15

    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Ajmal Musk Gazelle Grade A or AA. I should have bought it from Buzier when he still had it.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Bruno Fazzolari Au Dela Narcisse des Montagnes First Batch and close to the Mastertape. Takes my breath away, still.
    Bruno Fazzolari Cadavre Exquis First Batch and handed to me by Fazzolari and Gardoni. An Ugly/Beautiful beast this.
    Spirit Bear Camel Chypre 2. There is very unusual pleasure derived from having a scent designed for you.
    Spirit Bear Un-Named Castoreum-rich gem that tickles my brain cells.
    JSP Burvuvu Biebel's landscape of Cedar,Castoreum,Fungus, with Gnarly Rose is mesmerizing.
    O'driu Pathetique Pregoni vears sharply off his Vetiver Notions ( already Gorgeous) to create an Italian landscape of Bergamot, Rich Suntan Lotion, Frangelico and White Truffle Oil. It is so smooth as it has me caressing the soft curves of a Woman.
    Ex Idolo Thirty-Three paints a vivid picture of Rose and Oud less violent than Black Aoud.
    Genny by Genny Rivara Hanorah A Rose Chypre most Elegant.

    Pretty Pennies and Search have been spent to obtain Aged Chanel Cuir de Russie perfume. 70's Vintage Tabac Blond and Eau d'Hermes.
    Scarcity is an illusion. Unlearn it.
    Currently wearing: Équipage by Hermès

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Blend 30 edt was this for me. Finally have it. It’s a treat.
    FYI: I spray all fragrances on clothing, never on skin.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    I've made a hobby of adopting other people's unicorns. In most cases, they've made excellent companions: unicorns of all sizes, colors, breeds, and so forth tend to be glorious beasts, full of rewarding surprises. And so, I have hundreds of great horned equines in my stables. But, my most prized unicorns are those I hunted without direct reference to another hunter's expressed desires.

    My fragrance adventure began with a Clive Christian gift set bestowed upon me by my wife. It wasn't exactly a jump-start: I was happy wearing 1872 as a "signature" for years. But later, I learned that CC had built his house on the graveyard of Crown Perfumery. In fact, Clive's daughter found an old Crown bottle under the floorboards of his home, right around the time Unilever's resuscitated Crown Perfumery line of the 1990s was breathing its last. Clive liked the Crown logo, both for the crown image and for the interlocking "CPC" of the Crown Perfumery Company that could serve equally well as "CCP" for Clive Christian Perfumery. So, he bought the company, and set about reinventing what had been a midline brand into an ultra-luxe house—more by stealing marketing ideas from Patou (making No. 1 "the world's most expensive perfume"; changing Crown's clear plastic caps to gold-tone metal ones that nodded to Joy and 1000's gold foil labels) than by improving on the actual fragrances. Not that Clive's were bad: I still love 1872. But when I read that it had been based on Crown's Sandringham, I began my hunt for that royal unicorn. When I found it—and found it to be exceptional (though not identical to 1872)—I set off on a quest to collect all the masculine Crowns, and eventually the feminines as well.

    Today, two masculines still hide in the wild, and a handful of elusive feminines as well. Once I have them all, Pokémon-style, I'll probably start looking for originals from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. I don't expect to find them. But then, who expects to find a unicorn?

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Chanel №46 Most of it has evaporated into a thick concentrate.
    Honestly, I only bought it because it's so scarce
    It's locked up in the bank.
    It's a decant not a full bottle.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Dior Eau Noire
    Because currently it seems this can only be obtained in Paris and I live in Australia. Someone very special to me gave me a decant and I fell in love.
    Same person managed to get a big bottle for me when it was in stock again, and now I am waiting to be able to travel to Europe again to collect it.
    Currently wearing: Tempo by Diptyque

  21. #21
    Dependent AlanG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by speckmann0706 View Post
    Don’t have any currently but Dior Eau Sauvage Parfum 2012 would be my answer.
    Gorgeous and underrated IMO.
    Happy to own two bottles, the wife loves it.

  22. #22
    The Devil in the Details
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Now for my answer. There are several but due to time constraints, I'll name one for now and may come back to add another.

    Wind Drift by MEM (1970), originally its own fragrance, then lumped in as a flanker to English Leather (1970) to improve sales. This one is basically a barbershop fougère that blends elements of chypre in, and seeks to convey a "beach" vibe using pre-aquatic methods. You end up with smooth citrus, lavender, some sandalwood, labdanum, vanilla. etc. It's weird yet perfectly conventional, and I loved it because I have associated memories of it due to lost family.

    The stuff got discontinued in the first round of IFRA cuts circa 2002, and while it is not particularly rare or expensive (yet), I had zero knowledge of how to hunt for DC'd perfumes so when my supply ran out 2003-ish, I was without it for 15 years. You can imagine my reaction when I discovered this kind of thing could be bought on eBay and went a little nuts. I still sorta act like it is more precious than it is, and skip many chances of wearing it despite how much I have now.

    I need to wear it again soon and break myself of that.
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  23. #23
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Mine would be CREED VETIVER 1948.

    GIT was my intro to niche (and CREED) scents in the mid 90s (post divorce). There was a guy at Nieman Marcus in Beverly Hills who kind of became my "personal shopper" and talked me into it. Over a couple of years, the male frag rep at Nieman prodded me into purchasing several of the "gray cap" CREEDS- one of which was VETIVER '48. I had never heard of vetiver when I bought it. I didn't wear it often- it always seemed "light" on me. No legs.

    By late 2000s, maybe had used about half of 75ml bottle. But noticed one day, it had strengthened a lot over the years, and starting wearing it more often. Re-buying a scent wasn't a priority then, and didn't foresee it would be vaulted until too late. There was a moment between joining Basenotes and a wet-shaver forum where I really came to appreciate the scent as a very Madmen-esque, manly, barbershoppy type scent that I really loved. But I either lacked the patience, or maybe finances were tight, and didn't try to pin some before it totally disappeared. It is a regret. In hindsight. I would have loved a flacon of this. VETIVER '48 and BOIS DU PORTUGAL both radically strengthened over the years and became my two of my favorites.

    In the years since vaulting, I did find a guy who sold me about 100ml which I treasure. It was pricey but not insanely so. Worth it to me to have a bit of a supply.

    It's not a conventional vetiver. Ginger, kind of mineralic. But one of my favorite dry downs, and it lasts quite long on me. Always makes me feel smooth, suave, slick shaved and clean.

    Loved it at work.
    Currently Loving:

    Bois du Portugal
    Invasion Barbare
    Le 3e Homme
    Ormande Jayne Man
    New York Intense
    Patchouli Intense
    Naxos
    Ombre Leather
    Clubman/Canoe/Wild Country/Azzaro Pour Homme

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    This is a great thread idea! I have a few in my collection that I’m really proud of.

    One is a 120ml of Aventus (about 75% full) from 2013 (13R01 to be exact). Modern formulations have strayed so far away from the early stuff that it’s like a different scent, and it just hits in a way that’s incredible. I paid a pretty penny for it, but it was totally worth it, IMO.

    Second is a 75ml 2010 Royal Oud, I think the second batch ever released (10K01). It’s hard to find and has an amazing depth to it.

    Third, from a designer perspective, I have two bottles of Acqua di Gio Profumo special blend, one still wrapped in cellophane. To me this is one of the best *modern* designer fragrances ever released, and the special blend takes it to a different level. It’s also one of the best looking bottles I own.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    For me it would be Dior Eau Noire. I'm a big Hedi Slimane fan so when he launched the original 3 fragrances at Dior I bought this right away and still have about half a bottle left. It's not my favorite scent in my collection anymore, but I'm really glad I have a bottle of the very first edition of a now discontinued and highly sought after fragrance.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zealot Crusader View Post
    Therefore, I'd like to ask you what scents in your collection were your personal "unicorns"? Which scents did you in particular have to go far above and beyond out of your way to obtain, then place on a pedestal for reasons personal or particular to you?
    Some of mine that come to mind - All Brand New Bottles:

    Scent Of Oger by Creed
    No. 1 Imperial Coronation by CC
    No. 1 Imperial Jubilee by CC
    No, 1 Imperial by CC
    No. 1 15 Year by CC
    No. 1 Pure Parfum Concentrated Limited in Crystal by CC
    Absolute Sandalwood Oil by CC
    Absolute Vetiver Oil by CC
    Absolute Osmanthus Oil by CC
    Absolute Frankincense Oil by CC
    Absolute Oakwood Oil by CC
    Absolute Amber Oil by CC
    Absolute Rose Oil by CC
    Absolute Jasmine Oil by CC
    Rouge 540 by Baccarat in Baccarat Crystal
    Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
    Mean spirited, nasty, snide, sarcastic, hateful, and rude individuals on Basenotes don't warrant or deserve my or other Basenoters' acknowledgement or respect.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Antaeus Sport, for me. I bought a mini online because I thought the idea of a sport version of Antaeus sounded funny. I opened the package right away on the walk back from the mail box, a 7.5-ml mini, and the smell coming out of that thing was an entirely different level of perfume to anything I'd smelled up to that point, except maybe vintage Pour Monsieur, which impressed me about equally. (My first sniff of vintage Tuscany, which came later, was at a similar level).

    Antaeus Sport, though, proved a real bear to find. I looked on eBay and Etsy daily for about four months until I found a bottle. I got a second bottle the next week, and now have four, and eBay has plenty of it. So it's not so rare anymore.

    Patou Pour Homme Prive and Chanel Bois Noir have more scarcity power. I never looked for those. I watched listings for a long time that no one else wanted, and eventually bought them when it came down to that or saving for retirement. There was no Antaeus Sport-style burning desire.

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by StylinLA View Post
    (Vetiver 1948) Always makes me feel smooth, suave, slick shaved and clean.
    Suave it definitely is. I always imagine it being what James Bond would wear....a 1960's "suave". Just the perfect smell of what a gentleman should smell like (at least in my head).

    Fantastic vaulted Creed that I'm also lucky to have.
    Basenotes sales: TDC de Bachmakov, Atelier Vetiver Fatal, Tiffany for Men mini, 17 Cuba Paris frags, L'Essence de Cerruti, Reyane Insurrection, numerous popular SAMPLES! http://www.basenotes.net/threads/472...ples-amp-More!

    Crystal Flacon sales: Prelude to Love, Noir de Noir, SAMPLES! http://flacon.ambaric.net/viewtopic.php?t=626
    Currently wearing: Néroli Sauvage by Creed

  29. #29
    The Devil in the Details
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by hednic View Post
    Some of mine that come to mind - All Brand New Bottles:

    Scent Of Oger by Creed
    No. 1 Imperial Coronation by CC
    No. 1 Imperial Jubilee by CC
    No, 1 Imperial by CC
    No. 1 15 Year by CC
    No. 1 Pure Parfum Concentrated Limited in Crystal by CC
    Absolute Sandalwood Oil by CC
    Absolute Vetiver Oil by CC
    Absolute Osmanthus Oil by CC
    Absolute Frankincense Oil by CC
    Absolute Oakwood Oil by CC
    Absolute Amber Oil by CC
    Absolute Rose Oil by CC
    Absolute Jasmine Oil by CC
    Rouge 540 by Baccarat in Baccarat Crystal
    Is there a particular reason you love Clive Christian over any other similar brand? A personal story behind how you found this love for them? Something that would make you take this journey to acquire all these?
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  30. #30
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    Default Re: Your Personal Unicorn. What is it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zealot Crusader View Post
    Is there a particular reason you love Clive Christian over any other similar brand? A personal story behind how you found this love for them? Something that would make you take this journey to acquire all these?
    Yes. A very personal reason - which started in June 2007 on Father's Day, with a gift and a special request, from one of my children.
    Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
    Mean spirited, nasty, snide, sarcastic, hateful, and rude individuals on Basenotes don't warrant or deserve my or other Basenoters' acknowledgement or respect.




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