Perfume / Cologne

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I will say I have a soft spot for Hermes’ absurd eighties dusty-rose oriental Rouge, which is overpowering in ‘Eau Delicat’ formulation and could probably bring down an elephant at perfume strength. I just dug out an old bottle of Hiris as well, and it’s pretty lovely.

I’ve not been enormously impressed by recent Hermes stuff but the older fragrances, or older formulas, were good.

Wag1 Shree Rajneesh (ShariVari), Saturday, 22 September 2018 10:30 (one year ago) link

I know I only ever appear on this thread to say "Miller Harris" but I treated myself to some of her Vetiver Insolent this week and it's a joy.

My "go to", work day "regime" is Musgo Real Cologne - no. 1 Orange Amber. But with the MH, there's something about how it *feels* expensive and stays for much of the day.

djh, Saturday, 22 September 2018 21:03 (one year ago) link

Despite having failed to buy anything in UAE earlier this year, I’ve started to take an interest in domestic Arabian fragrance houses like Rasasi recently. Outside of the Gulf, they seem to attract a higher than average proportion of the kind of people who do direct-to-camera YouTube reviews shouting about ‘BEAST MODE PROJECTION’ but that shouldn’t put anyone off.

A lot of European / American fragrances seem to have been formulated to smell great on the testing strip but disappear within about half an hour when worn (Imaginary Authors seems particularly bad at this) but perfumes designed for hot weather need to have more longevity, without necessarily being heavy or overpowering.

Rasasi’s La Yuqawam is a very good raspberry-leather with a smoky incense note underneath. It’s apparently suspiciously similar to Tom Ford’s Tuscan Leather. I’m keen to try some of their rose-oud ones as well.

Wag1 Shree Rajneesh (ShariVari), Friday, 28 September 2018 16:14 (one year ago) link

Zoologist has a new one out next week by the guy who runs Bogue Profumo, called T-Rex, which the perfume place I go let me try at the start of the month. First impressions were positive. Lots of champaca.

I got a decant of this and have been wearing it today. It’s quite something. There is a heavy resinous frankincense bolted on to leather, rose, civet, geranium, black pepper, patchouli and that big champaca note. The longer it goes on (and it seemingly goes on forever) the smokier it gets but it never loses that spicy floral element or the slight suggestion of the stable. My favourite incense fragrances, like Zagorsk and Avignon, tend to be a little austere and churchy, Tyrannosaurus Rex is the absolute opposite. Luca Turin wrote that smelling one of Antonio Gardoni’s handful of other fragrances (Maai, I think) is akin to sitting in the front row of the Vienna Philharmonic after months of listening to ringtones and this is no different. It smells like it was designed to cover up the fact that it’s 1930 and your face cream is giving you low-key thallium poisoning. Gardoni is pretty interesting - he is an architect who seems to have started making fragrances as a hobby.

It’s possibly not something I would buy a bottle of, and probably shouldn’t have worn on a plane journey today, but idk, it’s certainly impressive and very enjoyable.

Wag1 Shree Rajneesh (ShariVari), Wednesday, 3 October 2018 21:53 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

Anyone tried: Musgo Real Cologne No. 5 Lime Basil?

djh, Tuesday, 13 November 2018 07:23 (eleven months ago) link

three weeks pass...

Update: it's *okay*. Not as nice as Orange Amber. One to wear for work rather than a special occasion.

djh, Wednesday, 5 December 2018 19:01 (ten months ago) link

a sample of amouage gold for women has shown up in the office lost and found. and while the owner is overwhelmingly likely to be me, I don't remember whether I actually brought it, and I don't want to steal someone's $300 perfume. (especially since I don't even particularly love Gold) this has gone on for like a week.

aloha darkness my old friend (katherine), Friday, 7 December 2018 18:25 (ten months ago) link

four weeks pass...

i got hermes rocabar, hermes eau d'orange verte, and varvatos vintage for christmas. the rocabar is probably better for fall rather than winter as it doesn't project enough in the cold, dry air but other than that it's a-ok and pretty damn good. i get the hay/ horse blanket vibe, so bring on the dancing horses, wherever they may roam. it's mostly benzoin and fir, so it's similar to the laura biagiotti roma, but less resionous. the verte, i dunno if that's a greenish orange that's not quite ripe or orange with green herbal notes, but it's jean-claude ellena all the way and wherever his dart lands is where he meant to throw it so i just wait for springtime so i can spray this shit on my carcass and revel in its sublime glory. it's precise and simple. i get orange and basil, with a bit of mint. i would have preferred the concentree version, as it lasts longer than the edc version, but a gift's a gift. the varvatos reminds me of that bit in the joy division movie where whatsisface tells stephen morris to speed it up and slow it down. varvatos goes way old skool and then way modern. varvatos puts some guts into his fragrances then dilutes them homeopathically so no one can smell the guts. you gutless bastard, john varvatos. it's still a pretty good designer fragrance. tobacco and fir, which seals the deal, and rhubarb pie.

i got my brother narciso rodriquez for him and comme des garcons 2 man. if fahrenheit is violet leaf in a kerosene fire then for him is violet leaf in an october rainstorm. yang, meet yin. the 2 man is prolly the apex of extant designer fragrances since gucci decided no one needs modern classics like envy, gucci ph, or rush anymore. so i've heard. i've never smelled those. i'm not angry, cause there's no such thing as original sin, says elvis costello. still, things suck in the designer realm.

slugbuggy, Sunday, 6 January 2019 09:03 (nine months ago) link

also! i want to try the musgo real line, especially since my brother likes barbershoppy things, but i have no access. there's no online resource for samples and i'm not in a decent metro area that gives credence to basic human needs.

slugbuggy, Sunday, 6 January 2019 09:24 (nine months ago) link

Is it fair to ask where you are?

djh, Sunday, 6 January 2019 19:56 (nine months ago) link

Is it fair to ask where you are?

djh, Sunday, 6 January 2019 19:56 (nine months ago) link

(Weird, don't know why that happened).

djh, Sunday, 6 January 2019 19:56 (nine months ago) link

Anyway. I tend to wear two brands: Musgo Real (I love their Orange Amber but have recently bought Lime Basil) and Miller Harris (Etui Noir, Feuilles de Tabac, Vetiver Insolent).

I kind of think of the former as what I'd wear for work and the latter as more of a treat. The Miller Harris feels more expensive (and lasts longer) though there's a bit of a cross-over in price (Musgo Real can be bizarrely expensive, I only ever buy Miler Harris in the sale).

Barbershoppy is a good description of Musgo Real - you can kind of imagine it being worn by people modelling Portuguese Work Wear.

djh, Sunday, 6 January 2019 20:02 (nine months ago) link

my wife and I had to go through contortions to get Antonia's Flowers for my mother in law as it appears to be discontinued and Barney's had one bottle. But that bottle came with a sample of Yin by The Harmonist which my wife loved, and I can stand as well. Surprise it costs $300 a fucking bottle. But I suppose that would last forever.

akm, Sunday, 6 January 2019 20:10 (nine months ago) link

I should wear my Roma more.

There's more Italy than necessary. (in orbit), Sunday, 6 January 2019 22:48 (nine months ago) link

i'm in sw ohio. the closest neiman marcus is in detroit and as far as i can tell and they're the only retailer that has it in a physical location, along with bergdorf goodman.

slugbuggy, Sunday, 6 January 2019 23:36 (nine months ago) link

They do a box set, if it isn't prohibitively expensive by the time in reaches America?

https://clausporto.com/gl/gift-box-musgo-real-4x30ml

djh, Monday, 7 January 2019 20:14 (nine months ago) link

have been wearing:

azzaro chrome legend (soapy, ambroxan-heavy yet a polite work scent)
cartier declaration (citrus and funky spices initial, transparent newsprint-like vetiver on the drydown)
guerlain l'homme ideal edp (sweet cherry/amaretto and virgin leather) kinda like guerlain's answer to one million

clouds, Friday, 11 January 2019 22:13 (nine months ago) link

one month passes...

i got 50 ml bottles of ysl rive gauche pour homme and kenzo tokyo from one of those mall kiosk places. the rive gauche is the discontinued tin can version, not the current la collection glass bottle re-issue, which itself has been re-issued in a new version. i was somewhat afeared of purchasing from one of these establishments because there's always some review when i do a google internet query (search engine, like ask jeeves) that tells me these places sell fakes, but who in their right mind is counterfeiting animale animale or liz claiborne mambo? nobody, that's who, or if the answer is somebody, then a really dumb somebody. the price of each was good. i paid $48 for the tokyo and $58 for the rive gauche in u.s. of american currencies. the rive, i saw the same size for $77 at the least on ebay, so it's a good deal; the tokyo, i could get the 3.4 oz for the same price i paid for the 1.6 oz up until it was recently discontinued and unavailable on discounters, at which point the price for the 1.6 oz went up to as much as $329.99 from one particular dickweed amazon seller, hand to god, and other sellers still want crazy stupid prices. so you can see why i had to get it.

the rive gauche, the convention wisdom is that it smells like shaving cream. it do! it do smell like shaving cream, except it's a cologne, so it's better than if you just spread barbasol all over your neck and went out like that.

the kenzo is a pretty good woody spicy thing. similar to azzaro visit, which i have, except the visit has this dense, oily bergamot thing in the opening which i suspect is used to tamp down on the heavy pepper and incense. the kenzo just shows up all put together so it has that going for it, which is nice. anyway, i got the last one.

i also got some samples from a popular discount website. what about adam, from joop! and encre noire sport from lalique. i got a mini size of the wba, which is from like 1992. i get bitter green tomato leaf and i guess cassia and then there's florals and other stuff but i mostly get green and florals. it really feels like an in-between interzone type of thing the way three strange days or right here right now or groove is in the heart belong to that time period.

encre noire sport is encre noire with grapefruit and lavender. it's more accessible and populist but if you like encre noire but feel you can't really pull it off on a daily basis then this is the answer for that, so why are you upset that it went in that direction? you have so much stuff that is good but difficult, get the thing that is good and uncomplicated, is how i see it.

slugbuggy, Sunday, 17 February 2019 13:53 (seven months ago) link

I always get super excited when I see that this thread has new answers, and a slugbuggy post never disappoints. I will now have three strange days in my head for at least three days.

mom tossed in kimchee (quincie), Sunday, 17 February 2019 14:35 (seven months ago) link

I just discovered the Ormonde Jayne line, which I think is really outstanding. Fortunately in NYC we have shops like Aedes or Osswald where you can go and sample 100 different chi chi fragrances if you want. Ormonde Jayne is from London, and they have a collection called Four Corners of the Earth inspired by the world travels of their founder, each fragrance specifically inspired by the indigenous flora she's encountered (so says their ad copy). My favorite of the batch is Montabaco, the one inspired by South America, which has some tobacco and leather/suede notes but blended well so you don't immediately peg it as one thing or another. You could imagine this on either an Argentine polo player or a sophisticated lady of means. It's crazy expensive though - $375/100ml! Ormonde Jayne also has a standard men's fragrance that - sorry if I lack the language - is a lovely powdery, slightly spicy, with flinty note blend that I suppose is reminiscent of Rocabar, of ones I'm familiar with. It's $220/100ml or $150/50ml.

One thing I've learned from visiting these fragrance shops is that there are far more scents I don't like than ones I do, even among the expensive ones. Certain notes are automatic turn-offs (like the bubble gum note many fragrances have, not sure what it is technically) and other notes ruin the fragrance if they're slightly too present. And then there's the complication of one's own body chemistry which may not take to a certain scent. That's why I tend to remember the few fragrances that pass all the tests.

Another one I thought I liked enough when trying it out in the store, but after taking home a sample and wearing it decided it was ever-so-slightly too sweet for me, was Amber Room by Thameen. I do appreciate its relative elegance though.

Josefa, Sunday, 17 February 2019 15:36 (seven months ago) link

oddam, i wish i could just pop into a boutique and just smell all the things. on the other hand, where i live i can have the same house for 1/3 the price or whatever. life is a game of tradeoffs and percentages.

i ave the rive gauche a full wearing and it's gorgeous, but it still smells like barbasol thet dries down to azzaro ph with the anise and oakmoss and herbalness. it's like if the local diner shut down and in its stead was opened a hipster cusine experience that offered authentic diner fare for ten times the price, which is justified because the omelletes and hash browns are prepareded

slugbuggy, Saturday, 23 February 2019 08:06 (seven months ago) link

didn't mean to do that. here be the full post:

goddam, i wish i could just pop into a boutique and just smell all the things. however, housing where i live is cheap so there's that tradeoff.

i gave the rive gauche a full wearing and it's gorgeous, but it still smells like barbasol that dries down to azzaro ph with the anise and oakmoss and herbalness. it's like if the local diner shut down and in its stead was opened a hipster-foodie cuisine experience that offered authentic diner fare for ten times the price, which is justified because the omelettes and hash browns are prepended in authentic diner style, except there's tarragon and because presentation. it's like when paul simon or david byrne do world music or when picasso did his thing with the damoiselles d'avignon. it's problematic, because i'm from the 80's and i'm used to the idea of someone going out and finding something that was always there and re-contextualizing something for me, like were basquiat or especially haring deep-culture aspirants who broke through or emissaries from the liminal boundaries who prospered from their ability to sherpa content from culture to culture? long story short, i had a bottle of pinaud clubman, the aromatic fougere of fougeres, and i never wore it because it was too fougere. the rive gauche is derivative of barbershop, but it's not from a real barbershop. there's still another bottle of rive gbauche at the place i got it and my brother was pondering whether he should get it or just get a bottle of brut because he reads all the old-school powerehouse blogs and imho he should get the fucking bottle of rive gauche.

slugbuggy, Saturday, 23 February 2019 08:58 (seven months ago) link

what i could have just said, were it not for all the knob creek, is that the rive gauche feels very fancy for a barbershop fragrance. i felt like it references a different milieu than the one it inhabits. but then again, there are probably very fancy barbershops.

slugbuggy, Saturday, 23 February 2019 21:57 (seven months ago) link

Being on a budget, I got a subscription to Scentbird. I think it's a good value, but the selection is patchy. Still I've got enough 15 ml bottles of expensive fragrances that I enjoy. One that sounded promising but which I hated was Black Tulip by Atelier Bloem. It's $195 for a bottle! But I can try it for sixteen bucks a month. Just as well, because it smells like an older woman at church. It's very well composed, just certainly not worth $200. But thanks to Scentbird I have a massive collection of expensive scents. Molinard Figue was my favorite so far. I got Pinrose's Gilded Fox, which had been a favorite, but the caramel wears on me. And Etat Libre d'Orange Tilda Swinton Like This was pretty good.

I'm teaching myself perfuming, though, and am mostly enjoying my own concoctions more. Been doing this for a couple of years and have about a thousand dollars worth of essential oils, attars and aroma chems. But the stuff is coming along nice. Wearing a cherry scent today that also has oud, pink lotus and jasmine.

Twee.TV (I M Losted), Tuesday, 26 February 2019 13:01 (seven months ago) link

Where ilm meets ile ...

https://www.filigreeandshadow.co/products/incurable

A Fetching Gentleman in Fragrance Form
Byron on May 10, 2018

Incurable exhumes those remote memories of that young, sophisticated uncle who was a professional illustrator and who smoked an English pipe and owned russet leather armchairs and a collection of antique mechanical coin banks. The one who knew how to properly wear a sport coat and who wielded a generous sense of erudite humor. The one who proved to be the only example of a debonair man to be found in the entire living family tree but who abandoned it once his wife died and he disappeared into someone else’s family never to be heard from again.

Incurable is warm and piquant, dreamy and urbane… like the ghost of someone you wanted to know but never got the chance to.

djh, Wednesday, 6 March 2019 20:47 (seven months ago) link

the bubblegum note can be strange -- a scent I like but never wear as often as I should is mirabella by dsh, which is a really-nice plum-oakmoss thing along the lines of femme/mitsouko/things trying to be either of those, but the beginning is straight-up unmistakable bubblicious

theorizing your yells (katherine), Wednesday, 6 March 2019 21:52 (seven months ago) link

I've bought some of those indie / alt perfumes, but TBH, the branding on many of them is too precious or humorless goth. I mean, if you want to sell, you should broaden your market. Like I don't identify with the rich uncle at all! And then there are all of the perfumers who use Eurocentric and / or Victorian imagery, as if we all relate to or have those values. It's the same problem that plagues the DIY world in general, with all of its apothecary / homesteading nostalgia. A woman's perfume should respect all women, and sometimes the "mysterious magical witchy woman" crap is just plain sexist.

I am working on a fragrance inspired by Italian women in my family - the smell of the purses, like powdery makeup, rose, tobacco and candy. I didn't think it would work (I had the concept first), but I wear it all of the time, it really smells like my memories!

Twee.TV (I M Losted), Thursday, 7 March 2019 01:03 (seven months ago) link

yeah, the branding slightly annoys me, but no more than, like, the porny tom ford/(k*l*an)-type branding does. but, like, deconstructing eden's melisande is a really pretty cinnamon-jasmine-amber thing that I could more or less live in a cloud of, and also is named after a character in a thoroughly embarrassing book series

theorizing your yells (katherine), Thursday, 7 March 2019 20:22 (seven months ago) link

damn no idea his stuff was that controversial

theorizing your yells (katherine), Thursday, 7 March 2019 20:23 (seven months ago) link

one month passes...

The fragrance I got this month was Caswell-Massey's Centuries Sandalwood. It's kind of a dud. It's unisex, and although it claims to have other ingredients, like cypriol, which I LUV, it just seems to be all overpowering Australian sandalwood, which given its gluey, synthetic aspect, I don't think is real. Or maybe it's a mixture of authentic Australian sandalwood and aromachemical. In any case, it's not very subtle. I'll keep looking for a decent sandalwood scent, but given the unsustainability of the stuff, I'm not hopeful.

I used to buy sandalwood oil in college, when real mysore was more affordable. I guess I have to leave those days behind me, because the Australian variant isn't getting it done.

Oh by the way, I got some amyris, which is supposed to be "west Indian sandalwood" and I like it a lot, although it smells nothing like sandalwood.

Have you tried Night of Olay? (I M Losted), Saturday, 4 May 2019 21:55 (five months ago) link

three weeks pass...

There seems to be a Miller Harris offer that if you take an empty/full bottle of any Perfume/Cologne to one of their stores, you will get half price on any of their fragrances.

djh, Sunday, 26 May 2019 20:42 (four months ago) link

Oh ... or use the code "RECYCLE" online.

djh, Tuesday, 28 May 2019 18:09 (four months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Hey, I found a new way for people on a budget to get $$$ perfumes for cheap. Some people are buying big bottles of expensive or rare perfumes and bottling them in smaller bottles. I got my own personal holy grail - five ounces of CHANEL NO. 19. It has galbanum, and I usually can't afford it, because you usually have to get it from France and pay a jillion dollars for it because nobody in the US carries it anymore. So it came in the mail today, and it's the REAL DEAL. I got into perfume because I always wanted to make my own version of Chanel no. 19 but I can't get the galbanum right...so now I have my very own to study. So if you're looking for that expensive shit, try Ebay!

Equal Time for Dingelschnitzen (I M Losted), Wednesday, 12 June 2019 02:10 (four months ago) link

I love Chanel No. 19

Dan S, Wednesday, 12 June 2019 02:13 (four months ago) link

more astringent and modern than No. 5, but both are classics

Dan S, Wednesday, 12 June 2019 02:19 (four months ago) link

looking at it in retrospect those really are the two classic Chanel fragrances

Dan S, Wednesday, 12 June 2019 02:27 (four months ago) link

Yeah, it's a classic and a long time ago, it was my signature. I like the slightly masculine or astringent aspect, but it is just so well-done and original. The new formulation is nice, but not as good and the personality isn't as strong. I loved the old one. It was greener and maybe more masculine and assertive. I guess you can get no.19 straight from the Chanel website, but I don't feel like paying $125 the new formula - I don't think it's worth it.

So, this bottle made me want to buy a few vintage bottles of the stuff that are on Ebay, and they're not really expensive, but prohibitive enough on my budget that I'm not sure if I should spring for it. If I had my druthers, I'd have a whole cabinet full of the original stuff. This is why I tried to concoct my own version - which was nice but nothing like the original. I mean, every description of the formula has something different in it. Apparently it has rose and leather in it, whereas I smell greens, vetiver and iris. I just love galbanum, which is a weird thing to put in a "classic" major house fragrance.

I'm just wondering if anyone has sprung for vintage bottles of classic fragrances, and if they hold up well, or if they morph over time. The few vintage bottles I have of stuff are not that great. The bottles I want to buy are from the seventies and the eighties.

And Chanel - as weak as the reformulations are, Chanel is still my go-to as far as designer fragrances. Some of those other fashion houses just produce overrated shit. The Chanels never disappoint, at least, and are worth the money you pay for them.

Equal Time for Dingelschnitzen (I M Losted), Wednesday, 12 June 2019 18:00 (four months ago) link


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