Perfume Reviews

Reviews by checkmate

Total Reviews: 6

ManRose by Etro

It wears similarly to Cartier’s Declaration d’Un Soir but possesses less pepper up top but shares Soir’s versatility. The bright, citrus infused rose is a delight as it blends seamlessly with a breezy white musk that is sprinkled with just enough incense to add nuance. These notes all sit atop of a wonderful, subtle, woody base that works harmoniously with just enough patchouli to ground, but not “weigh down” the composition. As a rose lover, this will get plenty of love this spring and summer evenings while out on a patio.
17th April, 2020

Maxim's pour Homme by Maxims

There is very little to add in addition to some of the reviews written. This is nostalgic juice from a bygone era and is absolutely wonderful!

Upon testing this fragrance, one scent instantly came to mind. Though the two scents are in fact different, I feel that they have a similar feel... Ho Hang Club by Balenciaga bears some resemblance, but the carnation note in the Balenciaga fragrance is much more pronounced throughout the scent's development.

I'm a vintage fan, and this one absolutely hits the spot. Not for everyday use, but if paired with your finest duds, it's a wonderful scent that exudes class and craftsmanship.

8+/10 in my book and worth seeking out.
23rd May, 2016

Eau des Baux by L'Occitane

First and foremost, of all the notes in perfume, I am most particular about my vanilla! For some reason, vanilla seems to be a note that is difficult to balance; either it is significantly overdone/unbalanced and the fragrance becomes incredibly cloying, or you wish that there was a bit more to round the fragrance out. With all of that said, we have Eau de Baux, and I feel that this one was done just right.

To be honest, I wasn't sold initially... It took a good 10-15 minutes for this fragrance to dry-down before I could really appreciate all that this scent had to offer. When I first tried this one, I had to walk around the mall, which is torture in itself because I hate malls :-), to get a feel for where this one was going. I knew that there was potentially a pot-of-gold at the end of this rainbow, because I'd read all of the glowing reviews here on BN. The question that then had to be answered was "I'm aware of the accounts and how it performs on others, but how will it perform on me?"

The initial blast was that of both pepper and incense and I honestly could detect no vanilla. After the 10-15 minutes that I'd alluded to, the vanilla and tonka bean notes began to surface and danced the waltz with both cypress and incense notes. Though the scent pyramid doesn't reflect this, I also sensed that there could be a dash of nutmeg and pipe tobacco as well which contributed to the rich, round, mature, nature of this fragrance.

In short, this fragrance picks-up where the newest formulation of Le Male left off. This fragrance is both incredibly well-balanced and distinguished and can easily be worn with a suit or with a nice Merino wool v-neck, a collared shirt and pair of jeans in the fall and/or winter. It is both warm as well as inviting and the vanilla is just sweet enough... It is borderline gourmand in nature, as the vanilla in this one isn't quite "edible" (a la Ted Lapidus Pour Lui) per se, but exudes a feeling comfort that well-crafted vanilla scents are intended to do... When worn, one will inevitably draw compliments from those who are within an arm's length for a good 6-8 hours.

I have found that this is no sillage monster, but it is more of an "aura" scent. Perhaps the finest example of an "aura scent" is vintage Azzaro PH... Though this scent is in no way related to the 80's fougere of yester-year, this scent fosters an enveloping feeling of ease, taste and groundedness that is unfortunately becoming harder to find in today's day and age of perfumery.

I give this scent a solid 8.5-9/10 and highly recommend sampling it-Cheers!
06th July, 2014 (last edited: 24th August, 2014)
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Versace l'Homme by Versace

The reformulation is decent, the vintage is where my heart is.

Hello All,

Let me begin by saying that my primary focus for the review of this fragrance is going to be centered around the vintage juice as opposed the reformulated. In short, the reformulated version of Versace L'Homme is quite good... I say just "quite good" because after smelling the vintage formulation, it truly gives you a keen perspective of how exceptional this fragrance once was.

The reformulated Versace L'Homme is a solid scent that initially caresses your nose with petit grain, leather, citrus/lemon with a hint of spice. From there, it dries down into a very nice wood-oriented fragrance that beautifully integrates both musk as well as a splash of vanilla. This is a very distinguished scent that is quite versatile, as I enjoy wearing it with a polo and jeans and can dress it up with a button down and a pair of linen trousers. With all of that being said, I'd suggest wearing this one in the warmer months, because I have found that the reformulated version's emphasis is centered around the brighter top notes. In comparison to the vintage, it does seem to lack depth and it's longevity ultimately suffers.

The vintage Versace L'Homme is a classic, charismatic, chic, Italian, masculine time machine of a fragrance. This masterpiece represents the conspicuous 1980's era of fragrances to the fullest. The utilization of petit grain and a lemon accord is breath taking, and in time, slowly yet gracefully dries down to a robust leathery concoction. This scent remains grounded, robust and encompassing through the use of notable doses of oakmoss and patchouli. I get a solid 6-8 hours with the vintage and find myself consistently smelling my wrist from the moment I apply it to the minute it begins to fade. With that said, make sure your flux capacitor is working, hop into your DeLorean, and let's see if this baby can do 88mph! The vintage Versace L'Homme is a time traveler's scent... It takes us back to an era when fragrances were centered around masculinity, refinement and exceptional craftsmanship. </p>
Pros: Versatile, Captivating, Timeless
Cons: None with the vintage, the reformulation feels hollow in comparisson"</p>
21st October, 2013 (last edited: 29th March, 2020)

Francesco Smalto pour Homme by Francesco Smalto

80's powerhouse that is laced with smoke and the feel of great outdoors.

I just received my bottle of Smalto PH by Francesco Smalto and let me tell you, it's pretty incredible! This fragrance has been covered in great detail by a number of formidable BN members, but I'll give you all my take.

Imagine it's 1988, you're sitting in front of a fireplace in your log cabin, the snow is falling and you're nursing a snifter of your favorite scotch. You're wearing your favorite flannel shirt and happen to be wearing Drakkar Noir. You're just about ready to crack open that book that you've been eagerly looking to dive into. The wood is ablaze and the aroma of smoke that is present is gently seeping into the fibers of your clothing an ever so gently finding its way onto your skin. Your Drakkar Noir and the smoke begin to blend, and in time, your scent becomes an amalgamation of both Guy Laroche and the charred wood that is bringing you comfort both through scent and warmth.

I have found that this fragrance is Drakkar Noir that has been surrounded by smoke and drizzled with Montana Red Box. I would never say that this scent is "fresh." In fact, I'd say that this one is the antithesis of fresh! This scent is deep, smokey, woody with that undeniable "green" quality that pokes its head when attempting to come up for air. As others have said, it's undeniably "macho" and suits those who are wearing a tattered leather jacket as opposed to those in a Canali suit. This fragrance represents rough-edged masculinity at its finest and is absolutely intended for use by those who are secure with their masculinity. Those who wear this fragrance are ultimately looking to readily display this confidence via the assistance of olfaction.

What I also find interesting is the way this scent evolves. The smokey quality remains front and center on my skin for a good 1-2 hours and then it begins to soften ever so slightly. At this point, it becomes much more of a leather/patchouli/organic juice that lasts and lasts and lasts... The evolution of this scent is amazing... I can't begin to describe it only because I truly believe this one will wear and evolve so differently on different people...

I am happy to have added this one to my collection and look forward to wearing this winter and fall. I give this fragrance a solid B+ bordering A-. It's not for everyone, but for those who are looking for a rugged, smokey, semi-green, outdoorsy, powerhouse, this one may be your ticket.


Pros: Unique, evolving, masculine and uncommonly smelled on others
Cons: The dry-down is where it's at... It just takes time!"

12th October, 2013

Balenciaga pour Homme by Balenciaga

Put on your seat belt, you're going for a ride!

Hello Gents,

This fragrance is not for the faint-of-heart! This fragrance is not only unique, but it transcends the boundaries of olfaction by leaps and bounds. For starters, my nose is nowhere near as well-trained as some here on Basenotes, but here's my take...

The initial blast is that of Bergamot, Coriander with a nicely done dash of cinnamon. In the mid-notes, I get a substantial wood-oriented influence, namely sandalwood and cedar. In the basenotes I get a rich velvety oakmoss that is wrapped with a vanilla, musk and amber bow.

It's one of those fragrances that I probably don't wear often enough, then again, I can honestly say that my daily life doesn't warrant me wearing an elixir of such magnitude. I reserve this fragrance for when I am looking to impress or really want to differentiate myself "fragrantly" from those in a crowd. Like I'd said in my opening, this is absolutely not for the faint-of-heart. This is a fragrance that exudes confidence, class and distinction. If you're not prepared for this one, you won't wear Balenciaga PH, it'll wear you!

I only have one word of caution, or consider it a piece of advice... Apply this one sparingly, otherwise you'll be transported quickly from captivating to overbearing in just one spray.


Pros: Complex, unique, distinguished
Cons: Can be easily over-applied if you're not careful"

25th September, 2013