Perfume Reviews
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Reviews by KJBarrett

Total Reviews: 12

Mitsouko Eau de Parfum by Guerlain

Unbelievably multi-faceted and ever-evolving during the course of a single wearing, and different to my nose every day I wear it. It seems like everything affects it, and tilts it one way or another along a burnished gold spectrum: the temperature outside, the time of year, my mood, the alignment of the planets, what I had for lunch :). Even though some days it's not for me, it is simply without peer and worthy of its pedestal. A treasure.
16th January, 2016

Vanille Absolument / Havana Vanille by L'Artisan Parfumeur

My experimentation with this scent certainly illustrates the frequent need to wear a scent several times in order to truly understand and experience it. While I loved Vanille Absolument at first smell, I am truly gaining a deeper appreciation for it the more I wear it. While it doesn't have a complex evolution, it is definitely nuanced and multi-faceted. The initial hints of orange and the potently delicious booziness, the darker smoky vanilla, and lovely brown-sugar notes all combine to create something utterly beautiful. I find it comforting, warm, mysterious, and golden all at the same time. I certainly do not find it cloyingly sweet or suggestive of baked confections. It is mature and long-lasting, and I foresee enjoying a long, lovely relationship with this fragrance. How sad that it was discontinued! I know that some have written about its supposed over-simplicity, and perhaps this may have been the reason for its demise, but I whole-heartedly disagree. I love it!
25th November, 2013 (last edited: 23rd January, 2015)

Coeur de Vétiver Sacré by L'Artisan Parfumeur

Wow---the opening of this fragrance is truly beautiful...effervescent, golden, sparkling, gingery, with the perfect amount of sweetness. It takes a little bit of time for this phase to blossom to its full beauty....I just wish it lasted much longer! It is truly intoxicating. On me, the drydown feels rather monochromatic compared to the pizzazz of the earlier notes. Delicious tea and a darker, woodier mood take over...not a bad phase, but it doesn't seem to live up to its potential and is eclipsed by the opening. The sillage and staying power are not bad, but could be stronger. I do get sudden flashes of earlier notes and interesting beauty even when I think the fragrance has completely left my body, however. It is a bit too elusive, however, and I am left wanting more. Despite this overall unevenness, I still think the fragrance is worth possessing for the addictive opening and the curious transformation of interesting notes. The more I wear it, the more I love it...
15th March, 2013 (last edited: 11th December, 2013)
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Vetivert by Hove Parfumeur

I stumbled upon Hove's parfumerie in the French Quarter, and I'm so glad I did! What a strong, dry, intense vetiver....I wore it around the Quarter for the rest of the day, and it became a scent I associated with the city...vegetal, earthy, exotic, and prehistoric. With smell inducing such powerful sense-memory images in me, I'm sure I'll always think of New Orleans and all of its mysterious primal qualities whenever I wear this perfume. Not for the faint of heart, though, this vetiver---it verges on too powerful, but could be be prime material to combine with another, fresh-citrusy scent if one wants to soften it a bit. In any event, potent beauty in a very affordable bottle.
05th March, 2013 (last edited: 16th March, 2013)

Baudelaire by Byredo

Such a wonderful scent...warm and comforting (often...see below). I am aware most of amber and berry accords, and light notes of incense and leather. Are there hints of Jubilation XXV in there, or am I crazy? It's not as dark as I expected (and I'm not even sure why I expected this), but fruitier and rounder. More purple than black. I did have the experience once of sampling it on my skin while rather sweaty after doing some physical work in the heat, and something about the combination was intoxicating. However, this is a day-to-day roller coaster of an affair for me...some days it's something velvety I love rolling around in, and some days it's a little too brash and 80s-feeling on me. Go figure.
16th January, 2013 (last edited: 16th January, 2016)

Messe de Minuit by Etro

I am reviewing the red and white paisley formulation, but what can be said that hasn't already been? It is moody, earthy, mystical, dark, warm, transportive, and exquisite!
Well-done! I wear it when I feel like stepping into a time machine that will drop me off in a strangely familiar and comforting Gothic land.
02nd December, 2012

Jardin du Poete by Eau d'Italie

Wow. This is certainly green, vibrant, citrusy sunshine in a bottle--and not cloyingly so. The masterful mixture of grapefruit, different types of orange, and the greenery of a Mediterranean garden is exhilarating and refreshing. I only wish the sparkling opening lasted tends to wash out quickly on me and fade into a ho-hum watercolor.
01st December, 2012 (last edited: 16th January, 2016)

Yatagan by Caron

Yowza. I hate to rate this as 'neutral' because my opinions on the matter are anything but. I love the smell--piney, woodsy, a bit leathery and a bit smokey. When I wear it, I definitely feel old-school and potent--a lumberjack walking into a 1970s disco fresh from chopping down a tree. BUT....It's the only fragrance I own that tends to give me a bit of a headache. So I either have to give it up or wear a lot less. Maybe half a spritz is the magic amount. At that rate, the huge bottle will last me two lifetimes!
01st December, 2012 (last edited: 08th March, 2013)

Absinth by Nasomatto

This fragrance is such an interesting gem. Vegetal, mossy and evocative of layers of greenery and earth, while at the same time suggesting sweet apple and beet. A candied-shell quality ends up encapsulating all of the above in a very pleasant package. Is it bright and dark at the same time? I certainly smell no absinthe, but perhaps it's the spell of the green fairy that brought me to this sweet green earthy place!
01st December, 2012

Eau d'Hermès by Hermès

This review is of the copper-topped Eau d'Hermes--I believe I've smelled one of (or the only?) reformulations before, and it contains a brighter initial splash of citrus followed by a heavier dose of cumin. In any event, this first version of the fragrance is smooth and suave--exactly what I imagine they were shooting for when they said it should smell like the inside of an Hermes bag. There really is a complexity of scent here...the little booklet accompanying the bottle lists 17 notes divided into 7 accords. And either I'm highly suggestible, or, after reading through that list while smelling my wrist again and again, I thought I smelled most of those notes. A 'fresh citrus' accord was followed by ' aromatic herbs', then 'bold spices', 'flower notes' and so on, until a basenote of cumin and leather was reached. Each accord was subtly there, yet combined into one unified, bronzey-brown color. Very interesting and full of depth. While I am huge fan of L'Artisan's Al Oudh, and find its blend more sweatily sexy (and great fuel for the libido), Eau d'Hermes's sex appeal is smoother and duskier---a must-try. Imagine shrinking yourself and a friend down and having a forbidden encounter inside a huge Hermes bag....
01st December, 2012

Al Oudh by L'Artisan Parfumeur

This is simply favorite fragrance to wear. Such a masterful blend of elements! While I do enjoy a dose of cumin in a fragrance, and find its suggestions of sweat and sex and carnality to be a huge turn-on, this fragrance certainly does not assault me with cumin. It is subtly blended with a host of other spices, oud, leather, rose, civet and the other ingredients listed above. There is such a warm radiance to this fragrance--I feel wrapped in a sensual blanket of exoticism, and don't want to leave!
01st December, 2012

Tokyo Bloom by The Different Company

Fresh, clean, breezy---very light cologne strength, but its gentleness is so pleasant! I smell wet morning dew on basil, dandelion milk, and some wood and's exactly what I would imagine early morning in a garden of bansai trees to feel like :) Happy, green, and FRESH. It puts a smile on my face and a spring in my step.
14th September, 2012 (last edited: 15th September, 2012)