GeorgeReid

GeorgeReid

Perfume Reviews
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GeorgeReid 6 months ago 1
7
Bottle
5
Sillage
4
Longevity
8
Scent
Should've Name it Guilty Green or Guilty Sport ...
I sampled Gucci Guilty Black recently at Sephora on the Upper West Side in New York City. I liked the smell enough on my skin to buy it despite the mediocre rating on Parfumo.

However, there is a good reason for the run-of-the-mill ratings it has.

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Guilty Black opens with a combination of lavender and light powdery/floral smell that makes it lean hard on the fresh side, with a light touch of sweetness.

The smell transitions to a mixture of woods and a minuscule touch of leather in the heart and base note, which plays nicely in an easy transition from the fresh notes, while maintaining a soft masculine scent profile.

It is a solid overall fragrance that is complex and easy enough to use (more on that later). However, the fresh/woods combination profile is ubiquitous with men’s fragrances in the current era due to how well it works. Guilty Black will disappoint someone looking for a unique scent profile, as it's present in many sports-like fragrances.

That disappointment is exponentially higher with people who knew Gucci’s creativity with fragrances in the past, and the lack of creativity in recent times. Effectively, Guilty Black is Guilty Intense, minus the lemon note and switching Amber with Leather.

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A standard 100 ml bottle of Guilty Black is solid. Functionally, like any bottle in the Guilty line, it is slim and easily fits in one’s hand like a smaller smartphone, making it easy to spray and carry around in a pocket or bag.

I also like the green and black combination that Guilty Black has going on, giving it an attractive designer style. However, the bottle is not an artistic masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination.

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In terms of performance, Guilty Black may not be up to everyone’s expectations.

For longevity, Guilty Black lasts for about four hours. That period can work for a date or a short meeting. However, it is nowhere close to lasting for an entire workday without a respray. (Good thing the bottle is easy to carry.)

In terms of sillage and projection, the fragrance does not project far from the skin, and the scent trail it leaves is faint. Do not expect Guilty Black to announce your presence as you enter a room, or even when you walk by a person. However, someone close to you would almost certainly appreciate the scent, as it will not overwhelm them.

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Guilty Black is a versatile fragrance. However, it shines brighter in some scenarios, and weaker in others.

For example, in terms of season or climate, it works best in the milder temperatures of Spring or Autumn, or if someone is in a mild climate like San Francisco or London. The fresh aspects of the scent should make it workable in the summer months without cloying or nauseating anyone. While detectable, it does not perform as well in the Winter, which is unusual for a fragrance with Black/Noir/Night/Nuit in the name.

For social situations, Guilty Black is too weak to use in an outdoor event, or a party at a large venue, as the scent fades into the background.

However, it works in every other situation. It can work great as an intimate date night fragrance, especially if one is shifting away from the modern trend of primarily sweet scents.

Guilty Black can also work as a leisurely fragrance, or as a scent after a workout in the gym, because of the fresh and woody aspects at the forefront of the fragrance.

With that said, Guilty Black excels the most as an office fragrance, as it is a fresh scent that does not have the sillage to bother people beyond a personal space bubble.

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Gucci Guilty Black is a solid fragrance option, but there are many reasons for disappointment. Admittedly, if Gucci called the fragrance Guilty Sport or Guilty Green, the reception is probably better.

However, Guilty Black is the name of the fragrance.

Anyone looking for a winter fragrance that excels at large parties or outdoor events would be disappointed, as most expect that out of Black/Noir fragrances.

Anyone looking for projection or longevity in fragrances will become more disappointed, especially at the price point offered, and knowing that Black/Noir fragrances typically last longer.

The same level of disappointment applies to someone seeking a unique fragrance—especially if Gucci’s current offerings do not impress them.

However, putting aside the negativity, and the silliness of labeling a sport/green scent black, if someone treats Guilty Black like the fresh fragrance it is, they will find a solid daily scent to freshen up at a point in the day in the office, or a potential date night fragrance that is outside the trend.
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GeorgeReid 7 months ago 5
9
Bottle
7
Sillage
10
Longevity
10
Scent
Seduction Increased by a Factor of 3.14.
While Pi has been around since 1999, I bought it on a recommendation from a friend that I knew since my elementary school days. Also, as a math nerd and Greek enthusiast, the name drew me in.

Also, attempting a new approach to reviews. I am loquacious and want to reduce that while still being informative.

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Pi’s opening is citrusy and sweet from the orange and benzoin in the base blending.

When the heart note opens, the sweetness dies down slightly as the orange dissipates. Pi becomes more forest-like from the pine needles and ironwood. The base note is similar, minus the pine scent.

Pi maintains an air of seductive masculinity. However, that should not stop a woman from wearing it if she wants to.

Overall, Pi is a scent I immediately fell in love with on the strip, and it smelled better on the skin. The light sweetness dances with the woody and earthy notes to be alluring. Alberto Morillas created an amazing fragrance.

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The shape of Pi’s bottle remains the same as a triangle with symbols on the back and the omega symbol on top. Quite a few Greek references if someone looks carefully. It functions well and is a bottle that stands out among designer fragrances.

However, Givenchy removed the Pi symbol labeling in recent bottles. I am quite disappointed with that.

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Pi has reasonable sillage. While it is not a nightclub fragrance that will announce your presence as you enter a room, people can detect it from outside someone’s personal space bubble.

That said, I smell Pi on my skin twelve hours later. It may be different for other people, but I get monstrous longevity.

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For seasonal usage, Pi works best as a cold or mild weather fragrance in the fall or winter. It can work in the cooler months of spring as well. Pi can work on a summer night, but it feels out of place on a hot summer day, and the potential for cloying nausea exists.

Socially, Pi works well as a fragrance for an evening out with friends, or to wind down the day at home with tea or wine and a book in hand.

Despite the excellent longevity, it is questionable to use it in an office or school as it can distract others. However, the office or school is a better scenario than the gym; it is a crime against humanity to use Pi during a workout.

That said, Pi shines the brightest as a date night fragrance. Between the alluring scent, and the performance, it can last through the date and potential intimate encounter if the evening goes further.

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I will reiterate that Pi is an outstanding fragrance that has stood the test of time. However, a person must answer the question if Pi fits one’s lifestyle and fragrance choices.

For example, if someone is looking for a versatile or classic fragrance from the mid-1990s, Pi is not what you are seeking. Likewise, if you dislike sweet fragrances, Pi is also not for you.

However, if you are seeking a winter or a nighttime fragrance that can get a date’s attention, or like fragrances with excellent longevity, Pi is a fantastic option to consider with a reasonable price tag.
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GeorgeReid 7 months ago 3 2
6
Bottle
6
Sillage
7
Longevity
8.5
Scent
Like (a) Beach Walk
A while ago, I was interested in a summer fragrance that was NOT like the typical aquatic, fresh, or orchard-fruity offerings. A trio of fragrances caught my attention from Azzaro—Shine, Fun, and Sea—that came out in 2019.

Shine by Azzaro caught my attention more than Fun, and Sea, so I purchased it. Admittedly, the fragrance is surprising, in a good way.

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The opening of Shine is sweet and citrusy (leaning more on the sweet aspect). The citrusy part is definitely because of the bergamot, but there is a tropical fruit note that Azzaro declined to identify. It is also possible that the ambroxan in the base note is amplifying the bergamot to absurd strengths and causing the same result.

I am also not buying that the heart note is only sand and lavender. I get the beach sand scent, which helps the fragrance also get an aquatic feel. However, while lavender can leave a powdery vibe, it should not give off a strong one as Shine does. It is possible the ambroxan in the base note is amplifying the lavender. It is also possible for a stronger powdery floral to exist in the fragrance.

The base note is a combination of cedar and the twice aforementioned ambroxan, which reminds me slightly of the base scent of Versace Eros. No complaints there.

With the overall smell, Shine reminds me of a Beach Walk, both figuratively and literally.

Figuratively, the scent captures the beach ambiance almost perfectly. It is a scent I would expect to smell on a lively and vibrant person who is having a blast during a summer getaway.

Literally, because the scent is almost identical to "Replica - Beach Walk | Maison Margiela", which came out seven years before Shine. It also shares similarities with "Alien Goddess (Eau de Parfum) | Mugler", which came out after Shine in 2021.

Also, important to note is that a guy can pull off the fragrance successfully (especially while outdoors). However, the fragrance leans feminine, especially when compared to Beach Walk and Alien Goddess.

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The bottle of Shine is nothing noteworthy. An oval bottle with a decent weight with a plastic circular black cap. The writing on the bottle is a different shade of yellow than the liquid in the bottle. Azzaro did not try at an artistic bottle with Shine. (One can say the same for Fun and Sea, except replace yellow with red and blue, respectively).

That said, one should not feel the need to hide a bottle of Shine in embarrassment.

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In terms of performance, Shine is about what one would expect.

With longevity, Shine usually lasts about six to eight hours. Enough to get through most social events without a hitch, but if a person wants to smell the fragrance all day and night, I recommend a respray.

It has about average projection and sillage, which is enough for a person to notice if someone wearing the fragrance walks by, or sits in an area long enough. However, it will not announce the wearer when they enter a room.


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In terms of scenarios, Shine is more situational than versatile.

Seasonal-wise, it fits well in the summer months, and can also work in the warmer parts of spring and fall as well. It can perform in the colder months of winter without a hitch, but such a vibrant fragrance feels out of place when seeking cozy and rich scents.

Socially, a splendid opportunity to use Shine is if someone is on a date, as the beach smell is something different, and can be alluring with a pleasant breeze under the right conditions. Also, in an ironic twist for a beach smell, it lifts the mood on a rainy day.

I can see a younger person wearing Shine obliviously while inside a high school classroom or a college lecture and get away with it. However, a white-collar worker will probably not have the same luck, as the party and vibrant feel contrasts with most office environments. Shine runs more youthful and is not a fragrance for someone that prefers more classic offerings.

That said, the best usages for Shine are on a casual day or evening out with friends, or winding down a day to meditate with a positive vibe.

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Overall, Shine is a good fragrance that stands out as something different from routine summer aquatics or fresh fragrances. It is a fun and vibrant fragrance and is unapologetic about it.

That said, as I say with all fragrances, Shine is not for everyone. If someone wants a fragrance that leans masculine, or a fragrance that is easier to wear throughout the year, Shine is a disappointment waiting to happen. Also, the same applies to people who are not fond of sweet scents.

That said, if you are looking for a vibrant warm weather fragrance that stands out as different (or a fragrance that is vibrant and flirty), or want an affordable variation of Beach Walk or Alien Goddess, Shine could be a fragrance worth your attention.
2 Replies
GeorgeReid 7 months ago 2 3
8
Bottle
7
Sillage
6
Longevity
9
Scent
Underrated, but not Easy to Wear
While looking at fragrances on Parfumo, I came across L’Eau d’Issey Pour Homme Intense. While the rating was below 7.0 at the time (and still is as of the initial post date of this review), I noticed more recent reviews praising the fragrance. Then I noticed the bell curve for the scent rating ... there is an unusual amount of 1's and 2's.

Looking at the notes, it felt like a classic style fragrance I would probably like, so I purchased a 125 ml bottle to see for myself, as it currently costs less than $40 USD. I posted an initial statement, but I gave it two weeks of occasional usage to give a full review.

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The opening of L’Eau d’Issey Pour Homme Intense (LDPHI) is a combination of citrus and herbals, along with the incense that is detectable in the base note from the start. This creates a blend of a dry citrus fragrance that is a burst of energy, and partially reminiscent of classic men’s fragrances from the 70s and early 80s, but has a modern touch.

On dry down, the citrus notes fade, and the herbals and incense combine with resinous woods that take the fragrance in an earthy direction that is palliative.

Overall, the smell is unique in both classic (not too spicy or green) and modern standards (not too sweet or too fresh). LDPHI stands out for that reason and is borderline niche quality because of it.

However, people that seek a fragrance that is decisively classic from past eras, or unapologetically modern, face disappointment; LDPHI fits neither mold.

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The L’Eau d’Issey Miyake bottles are something fragrance connoisseurs are familiar with, but for those who do not know, the bottles have an upscale look and feel.

Practicality, the cap is bigger than what it needs to be (a 100 ml bottle with the cap is taller than all my 200 ml bottles), but the slim bottle allows for more space in a drawer or on a display.

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In terms of performance, LDPHI is what one would expect. The overall longevity of the scent was six-eight hours on my skin, enough to get through a workday at the office.

Sillage and projection are reasonable. For the first two hours, the sillage is strong enough for people to notice who walk by you. Also, while the fragrance will not fill a room, anyone sitting near you will notice the smell.

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In terms of scenarios, LDPHI can be a puzzle.

It is light enough that anyone can use it as a summer fragrance. However, while it has an energetic and bold feel, it does not give off the relaxed or vibrant feel of most warm weather fragrances, which is probably because of the incense note.

The incense gives LDPHI enough warmth to use in the colder months, but it is not as warm and inviting as other winter fragrances. This is probably because of the citrus notes.

Instead, this fragrance fits better in milder climates like the Bay Area, or in the fluctuating temperatures of the spring or fall.

Then there is the social aspect.

Does it fit as a sports scent? It depends. Smelling incense during a workout feels unusual while on a run to clear the mind or trying to cool down from a workout, but feels right while warming up or getting that extra push. For the same reasons, in leisure time, LDPHI is a glorious scent to start a day but does not fit if someone is trying to wind down and relax.

Does it fit as a date night or evening scent? It has a sophisticated touch for an upscale date at a high-end restaurant or attending a gala and stands out as unique, but it feels awkward for a movie night or going to a friend’s place for beer and pizzas.

That said, the best fit by far for LDPHI is the office. It has the feel of something that a high-level executive would wear, while also not appearing to try too hard to impress others.

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To answer the question about the current rating, I think people at the beginning underrated L’Eau d’Issey Pour Homme Intense. It performs well and stands on its own as a unique high-quality fragrance that I would expect from a niche brand, at a price that is an outright steal.

That said, LDPHI is not a fragrance to use anytime, which is a glaring contrast to the versatility of the original L’Eau d’Issey Pour Homme and is probably the main reason the fragrance was not well-received.

On one hand, it fits extremely well as a formal or business fragrance. However, using LDPHI as a versatile reach will lead to massive disappointment, as it feels out of place in a casual gathering, or a fragrance to wind down the day. If that is what you are seeking, I highly recommend passing on LDPHI.

With that understanding in mind, if someone wants a masculine and energetic fragrance for the office and formal occasions (especially one that stands out against popular classic and modern fragrances other men may use), LDPHI is a fantastic choice.
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GeorgeReid 7 months ago 2 2
8
Bottle
6
Sillage
6
Longevity
7.5
Scent
Decent and Reachable, but not Impressive.
While searching for Cool Water Reborn or Cool Water Parfum (and failing to find them), I found Cool Water Grapefruit and Sage. Figured I would give it a whirl and review it.

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The opening of Grapefruit and Sage is like "Cool Water Intense | Davidoff"—citrusy and sweet. The citrus aspect is more tart, probably because Grapefruit has a stronger citrus vibe than the orange used in Intense.

However, the dry-down is where the differentiation occurs. After a few minutes, while Intense continues toward sweet and lightly fresh, Grapefruit and Sage go in the opposite direction. It leans heavily on the fresh and herbal aspect (the sage note going into effect), while the sweetness remains light.

The overall scent is linear and slightly synthetic, but it gets the job done in being a pleasant smell. I like it, but I am not in love with it either.

In addition, I will note that Cool Water Intense is nothing like the original Cool Water, and that disappointed people. The same applies with Grapefruit and Sage. Do not come in expecting a twist on the original.

That said, Cool Water Grapefruit and Sage share a profile with another fragrance. Add some ginger, and it would be almost identical to Yves Saint Laurent's Y EDT from 2017. That fragrance notably also received a mixed reception.

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For the bottle artisans, there is nothing noteworthy here unless you are a fan of Cool Water, or want this limited-edition fragrance.

The bottle uses the familiar Cool Water glass shape and plastic cap, except the glass is clear, and the liquid is a light blue color reminiscent of a clear sky. It fits in well with other Cool Water bottles.

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In terms of performance, Grapefruit and Sage is within the expectation of a warm-weather EDT.

The fragrance lasts on my skin for six hours in the summer daytime and about four hours in the cooler evenings. It is decent for a workday or an evening, but if fragrances do not last on you, be prepared to respray.

Also, keeping my nighttime test in mind, I do not expect Grapefruit and Sage to perform nearly as well in colder conditions.

Sillage and projection are average. The strong projection extends to about two feet beyond a person and lasts for about an hour before it becomes an intimate scent. However, the sillage trail it leaves lasts for several minutes before dissipating.

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In terms of social scenarios, Grapefruit and Sage, like most of the fragrances in the Cool Water line, is a summer scent.

Grapefruit and Sage can work as a sports fragrance, as the herbal notes make it palatable in the gym. Likewise, it can work as an office fragrance, as the citrusy herbal smell is likely to be inoffensive to most people.

I do not recommend Grapefruit and Sage as an evening fragrance. While it is possible to use on a night out or a date, the longevity was questionable on a summer night and is likely to be worse as the weather cools off. While the scent is pleasant and energetic, it is not exactly a smell that evokes intimate moments on a date or in the bedroom.

With that in mind, the light citrus and herbal combination shine the brightest when used as a daily fragrance in the summer.

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Overall, I think Cool Water Grapefruit and Sage is just okay. It is something I would use and reach for on a hot summer day in the office, gym, or while lounging around on a whim, but there are several fragrances I rank over it, including other Cool Water fragrances.

That said, disappointment waits for anyone expecting Grapefruit and Sage to be remotely close to the original Cool Water (it is not), or anyone looking for a fragrance to use during a summer night rendezvous. In addition, if you are expecting Grapefruit and sage to work in cold scenarios, there is nothing but disappointment waiting.

If someone is looking for a fragrance with better performance, Cool Water Intense is similar and fits those expectations better.

If someone is interested in Grapefruit and Sage, I do not recommend buying it at full retail price, and instead try to find it at rack stores such as Marshall’s and TJ Maxx, where it is a steal as an affordable fragrance.

However, because of its limited-edition status, I expect the price to increase as economic scarcity comes into effect when Grapefruit and Sage becomes more difficult to find. If that happens, I recommend passing on the fragrance to anyone that is not a Cool Water fan.
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