WordsmithWordsmith's Perfume Reviews

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Wordsmith 4 months ago 1
4
Scent
8
Longevity
6
Sillage
9
Bottle
A bushfire in a bottle
During 2021-22 COVID lockdowns I was working from home a lot. To keep my nose amused I decided to focus on some fragrance accords I really liked and see how far I could push them and still like them.
Smoke was one of the accords, so this naturally lead my to Beaufort, which is well known for its 'smoke bombs'. Tonnerre 1805 is perhaps the smokiest in its range and is often described as 'challenging'.
It opens with a massive blast of smoke. You will smell like you've been fighting a bushfire all day. It is so overwhelming it completely wipes out any other opening notes. It is such sensory overload at this stage that it almost gave me a headache.
I wondered how long I could tolerate this and whether I should shower to scrub it off. But I was up for the 'challenge'.
Eventually, it settles down a little - at this stage it merely smells like you've been manning the BBQ all day - and some lime and boozy notes emerge, and finally some indistinct woody notes. At this stage it's more interesting. If it had opened like this and then become tamer it could be a really interesting fragrance.
But that opening is a sensory assault. It would be hard to sit next to someone wearing this. Now I know that 'challenging' means unwearable.
In the end I did shower to remove the drydown and went fragrance-free the rest of the day to give my nose time to recover.
Beaufort also makes a moustache wax, which is a clue to who their target audience is.
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Wordsmith 4 months ago 2
7
Scent
10
Longevity
9
Sillage
4
Bottle
Fond memories rediscovered
I first tried the original Comme des Garcons not long after it was first released in 1994 when I was just starting to get into fragrances. It was love at first sniff. My girlfriend at the time also loved it. I immediately bough a bottle. My girlfriend would spritz herself whenever she visited.
My then uneducated nose had not smelled anything like it. And at the time, there were probably few fragrances on the market like it. It smelled like a delicious, pungent Indian curry: cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, pepper and other spices but nothing with heat such as chilli. All softened slightly by honey.
I wore it regularly in cool weather for about 10 years.
When it was then discontinued for a while it was like the death of an old friend, and a marker of the end of my youth. I missed it often.
CdG then re-released it again about 10 years ago. Rediscovering it again was re-uniting with an old friend you hadn't seen in years. Again, I immediately bought a bottle.
But by then I was 20 or so years older than the first time I wore it and my nose was somewhat more educated. The 'curry' smell was still the same and still potent, but it now clearly smelled like a simulation of 'curry' made from some natural ingredients and a lot of aroma chemicals. It smelled good but I now had other fragrances that were clearly better.
My girlfriend from the '90s is now a dear old friend. She still 'borrows' it whenever she visits.
So I still wear it occasionally, but more for the fond memories it recalls than its smell.
I suspect many readers here have a similar relationship to a fragrance they wore many years ago: one that reminds them of an era and their youth.
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Wordsmith 4 months ago 1
5.5
Scent
8
Longevity
7
Sillage
6
Bottle
Too sweet for me
A sweet, woody scent. The apple and nutmeg opening give it an apple pie aroma.
Then it becomes hard to pick out any notes. It becomes a mishmash.
It smells safe - a niche take on what a designer house would do. I don't like 'challenging' scents that are unwearable, but this errs in the other direction.
It gets raves reviews from many fragheads but I’m underwhelmed. Not to my taste
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Wordsmith 4 months ago 3
7.5
Scent
9
Longevity
7
Sillage
8
Bottle
Whisky delight
This is a wonderful, unique scent that made me smile as soon as I inhaled it.
It opens with sweet whisky, then musk and some subtle wood notes. As a whisky drinker I can say its like a sherry cask-aged quality whisky.
A musky rose then joins the whisky and the two, as unusual a pairing as it sounds, smell wonderful together. The woody drydown is a little generic and disappointing after what's come so far.
It’s very concentrated, so you’ll only need one or two sprays. It will last all day. The boozy notes mean it’s not a work scent - your colleagues will think you have a drinking problem - but it’s perfect for a quiet night out with friends or a partner.
It's definitely a cold weather fragrance, so overall it's versatility is limited.
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Wordsmith 4 months ago 4
10
Scent
9
Longevity
8
Sillage
8
Bottle
Lavender reimagined
I used to hate the smell of lavender. It reminded me of potpourri. Until I tried Mem.
Lavender is perhaps the most traditional note for masculine perfumes. Mem taps into that tradition but gives it a modern twist.
This is so beautiful it will make grab your attention. It opens with a huge, complex, shifting lavender. Some reviewers have described it as 'kaleidoscopic' because the lavender keeps shifting: one moment it smells sweet, then juicy or dry or dusty or camphorous. This is not your nan’s potpourri.
Then a beautiful rose and jasmine emerge. Finally, some musk and sandalwood. The quality of ingredients is clearly exceptional.
It can be worn year-round but is perhaps too powerful for the office. You can also have too much of a good thing, so I’d save it for special occasions. For those sceptical that perfumery can be an art form, you need to smell this.
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