Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Hyrax by Zoologist Perfumes

Total Reviews: 14
It's a milder version of Hyde, and not unpleasant, but there is something contradictory in presenting such bold smoky notes in such a subdued manner. It probably be more a winner if it was bolder.
10th June, 2021
alexmate Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Fragrance in three words: Dirty Hamster Cage

Hyrax is based on the desert mammal Hyrax. Looks wise these are similar to the Pika, a desert mouse immortalised by Pikachu in the Pokémon videogames.

What I'm immediately hit with are really dirty animal notes: hot urine drying on stones, faeces and even animal fur. This is a strong divisive fragrance.

There's a really nice natural rose in the mix somewhere, reminding me of the dirty rose in Theo Fennell Scent (2007). I get the heat of desert air. I mainly get a dirty, seductive animalic leather. This isn't the new wallet smell of Tom Ford's Ombré Leather (2018) or the clean green leather of Givenchy Gentleman (2017); Hyrax is much rawer.

This isn't sexy scent by any means, but I find myself drawn to it. It delivers on concept and it's bold. The downside is it's difficult to wear. Projection is enormous in hot weather with pungent notes of pepper and what some people will describe as rat piss. Longevity is also around the 8 hour mark, with it still being skin scent the day after. Price in the UK (2021) is £165 for 60ml EdP, not cheap, but not a rip either.

Rating 8 out of 10.

Source: 1ml Sample
13th March, 2021 (last edited: 12th May, 2021)
TLDR: Excellent (4.25/5). Great stuff.

Reviewing from a full bottle. Multiple wearings.

I love this stuff. Mrs. Smell'dwell asked me to scrub it off the first time I wore it. We have agreed to disagree.

ANIMALIC. Wonderfully crafted. The saffron and rose in the opening succeed in taking the edge off the initial blast.

The heart and dry down smooth into an amber-centered blend with some patchouli and sandalwood in the mix. Interestingly, as has been noted by other reviewers here, the overall impression I get is that this is a leather fragrance, although I sense that the leather impression here is an illusion caused by the interplay of the various elements in the blend. Castorium and hyrax elements are most likely responsible for this wonderful olfactive illusion.

I keep smelling my wrist when I wear this scent. To my nose, it smells like vintage Kouros with a little rose mixed in.

Siliage is just under moderate and fades considerably in the latter half of the 6-8 hour duration. I particularly enjoy this fragrance in colder weather.

Folks who do not love animalic scents should give this one a wide bearth.

For the rest of us, who enjoy a bit of the beastly in our scents, this one is definitely bottle worthy.
09th March, 2021 (last edited: 18th April, 2021)
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Plant animal

Its a vegan flavored animalic. Smells semi credible as an animalic, like tofurkey. In the drydown, it goes all woody amber. Listen, i expect better from Zoologist. They usually do better work than this. It fooled me on the first wear a bit. Second time, trash.
It is not the animalic nature, that some people dislike, that turns me off. It could be something that I like in the opening. It seems bold, it seems strong. Indeed it is quite potent. But when it dries down to the base, it is a poorly composed chemical base. It leans in to some of the woody amber aromachems that blend in well overall with a fragrance, but unbalance a fragrance dry down, say 6-8 hours after application. Frankly, it smells bad to me. Chemically and harsh, like a clone company ignoring the final stages to sell a quick bottle.

Thumbs down.
30th September, 2020 (last edited: 17th October, 2020)
Some kid had diarrhea in a just-cleaned-up hospital wing. Then someone put incense to hide it and failed.

Ok, this is well done, but don’t wear it.
03rd August, 2020
At first I smell dried clay which smells old and dusty. This is a powerful dry and clean sun baked type of clay. Few top notes, none. There are so many dry animalic and powdery dust notes in here which create this intense dry clay smell with a slight warm skin aroma that smells like an earthy tuberose that is emanating through the dusky darkness of dried mud and stone. Turkish Rose, Hyacinth plus whiskey and amber gives that slight floral warmth that escapes unnoticed until an hour after application and then it just barely escapes the dryness of saffron, african stone, benzoin, castoreum, tonka and sandalwood. I don't get a fecal smell at all with Hyrax, but it does have a dried dusty floral tone that never overcomes the musky dry scent as the primary aroma. I like this scent, but it is an oddball and I could never recommend it without testing.
04th June, 2020
For a fragrance without leather anywhere in the notes, this is a very leather-centric scent. Specifically the funky kind. That burnt-plastic / new-car-smell leather, but with animalic and mineralic facets.

The scent is an ode to the musky powerhouses of long ago. You will smell a bit like a 70s mustachioed pornstar, and if you're not prepared for that, you're not gonna have the best time. I'd never wear this to work, but I honestly enjoyed lounging around the house in it. It doesn't reek of shit like some more dramatic reviewers would have you believe, but there is definitely something a bit "off" that could lead you in that direction. Personally I don't find it full bottle worthy but it's definitely worth trying.

I don't think every scent out there needs to be broadly wearable to be appreciated. Hyrax has it's time and place, it's just not your next HR meeting.
01st June, 2020
A strange and wonderful perfume this one. Smelling it, I think of a woodworking workshop, the polishes and varnishes, and a pot of old fashioned bone glue steaming away on the stove.

This is not a run-of-the-mill fragrance, it is very different and distinctive.
In a strange way it takes me back to the 1960’s, and a 50 year old fragrance in my wardrobe called Lacoste Eau de Sport with a wonderful dry-woody odour, from the days when the Lacoste brand was still highly exclusive and before the IFRA regulations took hold.

Hyrax proves to us that some things get better with time. Connoisseurs of malt whisky already know that, and so do perfumers where materials like ambergris are concerned, but African stone is rather less well known. When I smell this fragrance, I think of aged patchouli oil – patchouli a l’ancien - emblematic of the 1960’s and flower power. I think too of Ambre Antique, a famous perfume of the past that you can smell at the osmotheque perfume museum in Versailles. Hyrax too is an antique, with all the unique character that antiques have.
03rd February, 2020
I love a critter with some bite. And this little bastard's got some! Intensive glandular blast with some elemi, and the other top notes giving up their voices. They growl like a vocalist in a death metal band. Mmmm. Mmmm. Big shot glass full of skank, underneath. Pissy and mighty fine. Me? I'm bowled over.

The top-note blend may offend some...

Jammy rose. Toasted, nearly burnt saffron. Sweaty armpit, pheromone-laden, body odor. Stinky, animal sac secretions. Booze, in the backside. Styrax hits my nose, like someone swung a baseball bat at me. Lovely, in an over-the-top, renegade, devil-may-care attitude.
Mellows just a bit as it settles. More, and slightly different animal tones later, with less skank. A bit of floral lurks here and there. Basically this remains animalic with some balsamic tones for quite awhile.

Eventually, the skanky, buck-fanged little creature simmers down with a touch of sweet. Your usual, nearly oriental notes kick in. The heavy metal concert is over. Just plain ol', rock and roll music begins to play. It's a wild ride, really, with a happy ending.
A tiny touch of sugared-honey, wood, and amber accord mellow the whole thing out even more, likened to the quiet days after Burning Man, with workers cleaning the remains of the festival debris, left behind.

I'm happy with this zoo exhibit. It's a fun thing.

Much, much later it smells like a cross between a horse and processed small, animal fur pelts, with amber sprinkled in. Eventually the amber accord is all that remains.
Be afraid - be very afraid.
07th September, 2019
Zoologist – HYRAX (2018)

Animalic musks are rare in today’s perfume world, so I was surprised to find Hyrax redolent of those old standbys, civet and castoreum, mixed with a truly animalic musk. Zoologist states on its sample card that it uses no animal derived musks, so what is achieved in their laboratory is surprisingly authentic.

I don’t get the “skanky” or “fecal” vibe that other reviewers experience. Actually, I find this quite sophisticated and sexy. However, one-note (all of Hyrax resembles a mere part of most classically composed chypres), in this minimalist world of modern scent, it could certainly be layered effectively with other mono-syllabic compositions to “create” a desired effect.

It is quite strong so, as the old ad relates, “a little dab’ll do ya.” Most interesting and the first of the Zoologist scents sampled that I truly like. Thank God they abstained from ruining this with their usual overdose of oud/guaiac.

Very unisex and very worth a try for lovers of the chypre genre.
14th July, 2019
This is an unapologetic animalic perfume. If you are shy about smelling like animals and raw smells you should steer clear, but if you enjoy burying your nose in warm animal fur this is for you. I love it. It makes me happy to be a creature on planet Earth.
04th April, 2019 (last edited: 09th April, 2019)
Kyung-chul ( Min-sik Choi ) in I Saw the Devil by Jee-woon Kim 2010
03rd December, 2018
Genre: Leather

Given that The Zoologist’s Civet didn’t smell all that much of civet to me, I was surprised to find the castoreum-like, tarry-animalic pungency of hyraceum conspicuously present in Hyrax. I would describe Hyrax as a potent and assertively “butch” animalic leather fragrance with a decidedly retro cast.

I somehow feel as if I should like this fragrance more than I do, as dark, animalic leather scents normally appeal to me. However, the “throwback” element on display in Hyrax leaves me with the impression that, while aiming at “black leather jacket and studded belt,” the composition trips over “dirty old man.” Hyrax misses the élan exhibited by, say, Masque Milano’s Montecristo or Byredo’s Le Botte, and winds up smelling a bit crude to me after an hour or two’s wear. Oh, and if it’s the titular ingredient you’re after, I’d recommend Liz Moore’s stupendously skanky Salome for a more interesting use of hyraceum.
07th July, 2018
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An overwhelming fecal, musk. If you like smelling like warm, dirty animals, this may be for you.
16th June, 2018