GewoonBBGewoonBB's Perfume Reviews

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GewoonBB 2 years ago 1

Most Expensive, but worth it? (NKNN)
I finally got to try some Fragrance Du Bois and I'm starting with the one that drew me to the brand in the first place, Sahraa Oud.

A quick disclaimer. Fragrance Du Bois were so kind as to send me a sample set and additional samples free of charge. That doesn't mean that this is sponsored though, all thoughts are my own.

Sahraa Oud is the only one I've tried so far, but I also have samples for Oud Rose, Oud Jaune, Oud Bleu, Oud Orange, Oud Noir & London Oud, so I have reviews of those coming up in the future.

Where do I start with Sahraa...I was kind of afraid that the oud would be too strong, too animalic or barnyardy for my taste, but it is perfect. In the first couple of minutes, when smelled up close, it has that challenging edge, but that's about it...from a distance or once it starts to settle down, this oud is silky smooth and it blends in perfectly with the sandalwood. The opening is nice and bright with a juicy grapefruit note, that does fade really quicky, or at least the freshness is. And it wasn't until then that I picked up on the rose. The rose here is really subdued. Now I'm not a connoisseur when it comes to geranium, but I feel that it's more prominent here. There's an overal soft, sweet floral touch with patchoulli and vanilla. I don't get much of the pepper, because, usually pepper adds some sharpness and this is completely smooth.

It starts off relatively fresh and becomes warmer and warmer, the amber really plays a big role in the composition and so does the saffron in the base. I'd say this comes close to becoming a full fledged gourmand scent for me with how sweet it is. It's almost a honey like sweetness and I get a hint of almond. It's very smooth from start to finish, but it goes from ever so slightly powdery to more syrupy.

I haven't smelled many fragrances that are similar in style. The closest would be L'Air Du Desert Marocain, which I have only smelled on paper twice and I found it too complex to make up my mind about it in that manner. I feel Sahraa is probably easier to digest and appreciate. I was blown away from the moment that I smelled it and maybe knowing how much this costs tricks the mind, but I can't help but feel that it's the highest quality and best blended fragrance that I've come across so far. It comes at a price; this is roughly 460€ for the 50ml and a staggering 800+ for the 100ml, which is 3x as expensive as the most expensive fragrance that I currently own, Portrait Of A Lady by Frederic Malle. Obviously a purchase like this isn't aimed at your average consumer, and from where I'm at, I can't say anything about it justifying the price; I look at a fragrance like this, the same way I look at an artwork or a supercar. If you're a collector or a fragrance lover that has the money or wants something for a really special occassion, this is definitely the type of fragrance that could be worth it. I can tell you for a fact that if I'd win a lottery tommorow, I'm ordering Sahraa Oud first thing in the morning, it's that good •

GewoonBB 2 years ago 1

Lustre (NKNN)
• HIRAM GREEN LUSTRE •

I love me some rose, so I was excited to try this one, after being blown away by Hyde, Voyage & Slowdive. Hiram Green is an exciting house and this one is no different, although I would much prefer Lustre on women.

The rose here is complex. The scent is bright, especially in the opening, but it has depth and mature quality to it. To me, it's as if the rose itself isn't bright, but the supporting notes create that feeling. There's a sharp, acidic, oily edge, but the rose at the center is almost indolic and there's a metallic tinge as well. Somehow all those facets are contained well enough to not make the overall composition too harsh or challenging. The acidity from the citrus is very prominent and it takes quite a while for the rose to really overpower it. All the while there's a bit of green to it, that could even be considered vegetal. It smells true to life and at the same time artistic. The texture remains more liquid or oily; there is a powdery element, but not overwhelming (and not musky in the drydown at all). There's not a lot of warmth to it either, so this is suitable to wear year round. Lustre isn't the easiest rose to wear and I'd say more suitable for a matured taste, but lovely nonetheless.

This comes closest to Frederic Malle's Une Rose, or at least the rose note. Lustre isn't as opulent or even sophisticated as Une Rose, it's more modern and artisic, where's the Malle reminds me of a classic perfume. Une Rose is more musky and has a booziness to it that I wouldn't attribute to the rose being indolic, but they fall into the same subset of rose fragrances, with a slight preference to Lustre for me •

GewoonBB 2 years ago 1

The Sauvage EDT of tobacco fragrances (NKNN)
• Mancera Red Tobacco •

Red Tobacco has gotten a lot of love recently. Stay tuned to find out if I think it's worth the hype.

I've seen a lot of people talk about Red Tobacco and generally the reactions are positive. I have tried a couple of Mancera's before...I'm not impressed by their ouds so far, although Aoud Lemon Mint was okay. Cedrat Boise is one of my favorites though, so I'm still on the fence as far as the house goes.

On to Red Tobacco. Straight away I can tell you that this does not have a great opening. It's a bit of a mess honestly, its harsh, synthethic. It smells a bit more leathery, maybe with some ashes on it and when I smell it upclose I get some liquorice. With some dried fruits and it smells a bit dusty. I think it might be the saffron that's in here that you get in the opening. The spices are also quite prominent, cinnamon and nutmeg. I get a prominent clove or mintiness, so overall I would describe it as christmas spices. After a couple of minutes more of the fruitiness comes through and it becomes more like traditional tobacco scent.

It does get better in the drydown, when more of the tobacco comes through. It's a dry tobacco. A lot of added sweetness though, from the vanilla, although I think it's closer to Parfums de Marly Herod than it is to Tom Fords Tobacco Vanille in that regard. The vanilla sweetness isn't too strong, but there's also a sort of sweetness from the fruits. The fruitiness is nondescript, it lists apple and pear, but I get some cherry and there's nothing natural or lifelike about it. I think the scent in the drydown is okay, but unrefined, some playful nuances to a harsher dry tobacco center.

Where this shines and where it gets most of the hype from, is the performance. As most Mancera's, Red Tobacco is loud in it's projection. For a couple of hours this will be noticable in a small room. Longevity is great too, easily lasting a workday, potentially a full day. If that's what you're looking for, you can't go wrong with it.

For my money, I'd take Herod by Parfums de Marly over Red Tobacco any day of the week. Red Tobacco is slightly cheaper, retail is 95 for the 60ml, but I saw it on sale for 80 earlier this week, and the performance is better, so I guess you could make that argument. Is it worth the hype...I don't know, I think it's a solid release that brings something to the table, but in the most important department, the actual scent, it's not blowing me away at all. I feel like it's kind of the Sauvage EDT of tobacco fragrances •

GewoonBB 2 years ago

Macaque (NKNN)
• ZOOLOGIST MACAQUE •

My second to last sample from my Zoologist 'easy-loving' discovery set is Macaque and it's unexpectedly one my favorites.

Macaque packs a punch in the opening, with a bright, sour, almost tart apple. It's a bit green as well, but a lively, tropical, fresh green. It's a dichotomy of juicy tropical fruit with some aquatic touches (liquid) and a earthy, hay like scent (dry). It has that damp forest vibe that I also found in Panda, but it doesn't smell like mud or wet grass to me, rather like damp flowers and fresh fruit on dry earth, at least at first. It's slightly fizzy and it made me think of hair spray at times.

The sourness from the opening goes away, but you still get a nice fruitiness, with more of a floral and tropical combination as it starts to dry down. It becomes a bit sweeter, with a honey accord. I was kind of surprised how long that juicy aspect was present in Macaque and it was kind of what I hoped Chameleon would be. The one thing I really don't seem to get, looking at the listed notes, is tea. This is supposed to have jasmine tea and green tea, but I don't get any connection to tea here. The musks definitely come forward in the drydown and it becomes a bit more woody. At that stage the dry earthiness does start to become more like (damp) soil and it's not up my alley.

Overall, this was a very pleasant surprise to me. I don't think that it's something that I would wear often, but it was interesting and unique, which is what I expect from Zoologist. Macaque might be one of my favorite greener fragrances so far. Last up from the house (out of those I currently have) is Nightingale •

GewoonBB 2 years ago

ATH Coffee (NKNN)
Out of the five Aaron Terence Hughes fragrances I have, I instantly knew Arabica was the most special one. At first I wasn't sure if it was something I would wear often though, but after a couple of wears, I can safely say it's my favorite out of the bunch (Blood Orange, Oud, Tobacco Oud & Vanilla, Chocolate Rose & Oud).

Arabica is, as the name suggests, a coffee fragrance and it does have a special coffee note, but it's more than that. The opening has one of the most interesting lavender notes I've come across; it's a warm lavender if that makes any sense. The lavender is soft, but beneath it lurks a sharp and almost sparkling accord, that at first smells a lot like a Rum & Coke to my nose. On my first wear, I couldn't let that connection go; now I still get it, but I can focus in on it being a coffee as well. The coffee here is unlike most coffee notes in fragrances; it's not sweet or creamy. It's a bitter, bright coffee and combined with that Rum & Coke vibe I get, it reminds me of a coffee with liqueur. No sugar, vanilla, caramel, chocolate or sweetness of any sort.I have no idea what the notes are, but I found Arabica to get quite spicey (more pepper or cinnamon, not so much the cardamom you get more often with coffee). Although I haven't tried them side by side, if my memory serves me right, I get a similarity to Casamorati's 1888; maybe not in the exact scent, but definitely in filling the same purpose. It's warm fragrance, perfect for colder weather, but because it has a certain brighness, it remains versatile. Finally, I get more of the sandalwood base, which isn't the most interesting in the late drydown, however, with the amount of hours you get from this one before it reaches that point, it's not a big deal.

Arabica can easily be a comfort scent for me, although I have to be conservative with the amount of sprays. It's very powerful and that fizzy quality in the opening can be too much with heavy usage. The projection becomes more moderate after a while, but longevity is excellent •

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