My signature fragrance up till 2 years ago was Boss # 1. Halston Amber for Men along with Bvlgari Man in Black succeeded up till 3 months ago. I chose the fragrance MIB Essence recently and the reasons seemed obvious to me:
- It is the type of scent that pleases me the most, but some other fragrances do it also.
- I am really in love with the bottle, but some other fragrances do it also.
- It's quite versatile and wearable for my taste, but some other fragrances do it also.
- It has an above average performance but some other fragrances do it also.
- It's a magnific scent to use at leisure, but some other fragrances do it also.
- It has an attractive pricing for the "package", but some other fragrances do it also.
- Easy to order so far, but some other fragrances do it also.
- It is quite unique, but some other fragrances do it also.
- It's an obvious choice when I don't know what perfume to use, but some other fragrances do it also.
- It's the only one that fulfills all the conditions above, and no fragrance I own does that.
- If I would be Robinson Crusoe I would choose this fragrance to salvage from the wreckages.
When I first bought it, I confronted it head to head with the original MIB. They are somewhat similar in the opening, but Essence has more "muscle"and the drydown goes into a different direction. The spices and the woods of Essence have been turned up significantly and there is a cocoa heart note that remembers me of Valentino Uomo. Essence is drier, less sweet but with a less strong and more elegant booziness. The MIB musk note seems to be almost absent in Essence and I don't miss it. It has some very much appreciated common vibes with Pure Havane, SpiceBomb Extreme, Valentino Uomo and CH Men Privé. It does not have a very much loved oud soft vibe, but I rely on other specific perfumes to get the non versatile oud note when I feel in the mood for it.
This is a perfume that I usually use for my own personal pleasure, not caring much for "ladies praise" although it happens in a reasonable amount. It's a very mature fragrance - I am in my 50's - and not intended for youngsters. As appropriate seasons, late Fall, Winter and early Spring are obvious choices, although I wear it at night independently from the season we are in.
It projects intensely for the first two to three hours. Overall I get a longevity of more than 9 hours with three sprays on skin - left, right and back of my neck - and two sprays on clothes - my shoulders. Maximum sillage is around six to eight feet.
It's quite unique and so far I never met anybody using it at the same time as I.
Upon first spray, the fragrance reminds me of Pure Havane due to a cherry tobacco dirty and loud scent. As Man in Black Essence does not have a tobacco listed note, I imagine that my nose is fooled by the boozy rum note blended with oriental spices and bitter orange (this one resembling a dusty floral note), resulting in an intense dirty seductive tobacco vibe. I cannot identify individual spices and it may be just a mix of cinnamon, clove, vanilla, pepper, mace, nutmeg... I do enjoy the opening a lot.
This booze and oriental spices accord leaves a stunning scent trail and a statement of "I am here !".
The development heart fades slowly the boozy rum note, while the bitter orange & dusty florals keep escalating, toning down the spices. A sensual cocoa & soft leathery vibe is quite present at this stage, while the woods (orris for sure but maybe guaiac also) start to reveal it's alluring character.
After one hour or so the scent opens up with balsamic, dark and tonka sweet woody notes. The oriental spices are equally matched and balanced with the sweet dark woods.
As I am a dark woods scent lover, I can only state that the begining of the drydown It’s really a very pleasant one. The calm finally arrives with the drydown full development. The scent ambiance is one of a creamy, sweet & dark woody body with a soft leather undertone. A skinscent is still detectable still by the 9th~10th hour.
The fragrance journey offered us an impressive boozy beginning, a glorious oriental & cocoa heart, and a sexy dark woody dry down. Compliments and admiration are guaranteed from both sexes.
The journey is now completed with ample satisfaction. Bvlgari Man In Black Essence is an olfactory happiness switch, my signature switch.
Scoring my signature scent:
Scent Dry Down.........10.0
Longevity (h) ..............9.0 (up to 9~10 hours with 3 sprays on skin)
Sillage (ft)....................9.0 (6~7 ft with 2.5 h of good projection)
Versatility....................8.0 (Above average pending for colder temperatures)
Usability......................8.5 (High; Not suitable for any hot temperature event)
Compliments..............7.5 (Agreable, elegant, alluring, but not a compliment champion)
Uniqueness.................9.0 (almost unique, but is a flanker of MIB)
Quality.........................9.5 (above average quality, good cap & lock on sprayer)
Presentation...............10.0 (a matter of opinion)
Price.............................8.0 (€ 40 for a 100 ml tester + taxes)
between 7 and 8 => above average;
between 8 and 9 => recommended;
equal or bigger than 9 => don't miss it;
Opinion on this admirable Essence:
Very good presentation and overall very pleasant scent, elegant, making a nice choice for being different, and with a lot of class! Above average performance. Pricing still a bit expensive. During 2019 the on line price will certainly come down a bit more.
Blind purchase worthy? Yes.
Music: Emerson, Lake & Palmer - "Lucky Man"