* A review in two parts
Part 1 - The Cloud
Ariane Grande - Cloud is a sweet, somehow also slightly fresh and moderately heavy fragrance, which presents itself not too complex, but exceedingly pleasing. Sweet, but not sultry. I barely smell coconut, and what I do smell of it, I tend to sniff out in the second half of the scent. The little cloud is often described as cotton candy in a bottle, there's nothing wrong with that, but it doesn't do the scent full justice. A girl scent, too sweet for real men one reads from many... nonsense. Please sit in the next DeLorean and make your way into the 21st century. Cloud is absolutely unisex, man must of course be sure of his sexuality and self-esteem to wear such fragrances.
Durability and sillage are okay, not only given the low price. The scent progression is manageable, actually the fragrance just gets progressively sweeter until it comes to rest slightly woody-warm on the skin. Nothing exciting, but God knows not bad.
The presentation is a horror. The squeaky-colorful packaging stages the namesake, which is frankly completely unknown to me, and seems loud and cheap. The bottle itself is a monstrum horrendum, and hard to beat in tastelessness.
Very pleasing fragrance water, which you would not expect in the repulsive packaging so. The fragrance is designed primarily certainly for young and young-at-heart ladies, but in essence quite unisex. Sweet, not overbearingly heavy and exceedingly nice and pleasing.
Part 2 - Blessing or rain?
Of course, you have to take a stand on the elephant in the room when writing about Cloud: Is this fragrance a Baccarat Rouge clone? Yes. I don't know who on God's green earth would seriously deny its proximity to Kurkdjian's masterpiece. Especially on platforms like this one, please, don't tell me you have to look at the fragrance for its own sake. Who would be talking about this thing if there wasn't this other scent that's many times more expensive? No one. So please stop this bigoted posturing.
A whole other question is whether Cloud is a "good" clone... and that question is not quite so easy to answer. Let me put it this way, if one loves mostly the sweet, lovely, and candy-like elements of BR 540, then absolutely, yes. If you prefer more of the slightly medicinal, subtly spicy element and molecular lightness, then rather not. Hey, how many of you keep typing in comments on Baccarat Rouge that you don't like that very "dentist smell" about Monsieur Kurkdjian's concoction? Good news, buy this one. Cloud is Baccarat Rouge EdP without said notes, plus some coconut syrup. Voilà.
Oh, and of course, as always, there are those who want to tell us that their favorite in particular is a 99.99999999% similar copy of BR 540... no, it's not. If someone wants Baccarat Rouge, in all details, notes and concerns, then he/she/div please buy the original right away, instead of wasting so much money searching for the holy grail of shameless plagiarism that it would have been easily enough for a real bottle of Kurkdjian.
Is Ariana Grande - Cloud a near-baccaarat rouge? Yes,, it is. As such, does it come close to the original? Not on your life. And that's just fine. But for all those who can't afford or don't want to buy the original (it hurts me to reach into my wallet every time I shop for Kurkdjians, too), and can live with a slightly sweeter, less complex version, Cloud is an absolute banker and well worth the price.