Does Creed need to “up their game” ?

Recently, over at there was a thread that addressed this question. You may be asking, exactly what is the question, and I’ll copy and paste the first post to that thread directly below so that you know:

Well, in this thread i am going to have a little rant about creed.

Dont get me wrong, the scents are top quality. A lot i love like GIT and MI etc. However, i cant get over the fact that alot of creeds have very mediocre longevity and projection. Some have been said to last 4 hours some 6. the average longevity time from research and personal experience is 4-6 hours. Imo i think when you have to pay a arm and a leg for a fragrance, the performance should be quality aswell.

Personally, i like my fragrances to have decent projection and last quite a bit, and i will cut creed abit of slack, as a lot of their fragrances are under the fresh category, which are known not to last to long, but still, it should be a standard for niche fragrances. you dont want to keep reapplying a fragrance that costs alot of money to make it last longer and have better projection.

Thats just my opinion, whats yours on the creed frags?

I decided to write up a post about this because I think it exemplifies a major misconception about scents, as well as not necessarily being fair to Creed (I’m certainly no Creed fan, for those who don’t know). First, many people don’t seem to understand how to avoid olfactory fatigue, and so these kinds of comments just reflect this problem (which mostly affects “newbies,” and I certainly had major problems with it). I’ve spoken on several occasions about how I avoid it, so I won’t reiterate that here. Instead, I think there is an issue worth discussing that may involve Creed and perhaps a few other companies, which is that the scents have been designed to avoid smelling “generic,” and possibly also to accentuate the high-quality top or middle notes. How many niche scents eventually smell like something you might find even in a “celebuscent” (though perhaps not as strong)?

If you want a scent to last a long time and project well, you can’t just use any ingredient. Many men seem to like strong citrus notes (I don’t), but it’s difficult if not impossible to get such notes to last a long time with excellent projection (“sillage”) and not smell “synthetic” or too harsh/sharp, it seems (my experience with such scents is limited because I don’t like them). I own a bottle of Boucheron Pour Homme EdP (vintage), for example, and find the citrus really irritating for a couple of hours, but then it largely dissipates and a nice sandalwood-dominant scent emerges. It’s a scent I won’t wear if I am going to mostly be sitting that day, because it would become cloying quickly. On the other hand, this kind of scent might work well if you are going to be doing a lot of walking, especially outdoors on a day when it’s not really hot or really cold.

It’s possible to sort of drag the citrus into the base notes, so to speak, but then you need to use some strong base notes that might come across as generic, such as vetiver, one or another wood, or patchouli, along with amber (or something with a similar quality, such as benzoin). In a sense, I think Green Irish Tweed does an excellent job of solving this problem. The citrus (mostly lemon, apparently) isn’t too strong but is enhanced by the violet leaf and iris notes. In this way, it doesn’t come across as generic or harsh/sharp. The base doesn’t have any of the usual suspects, except in much smaller amounts, and instead musk is used to keep it lasting a long time (one can always let some of it get sprayed onto one’s shirt to make it last even longer, though for me this hasn’t worked well for scents with ingredients that seem low quality). Those who claim GIT is too “old” may be thinking of the amount of musk used, though I think the dry, non-sweet quality (especially compared to popular ones like Cool Water, which is also less musky) may play a role as well.

So, the “bottom line” here is that you really need to know what you are seeking. Why are you even thinking about spending a lot of money on a Creed bottle in the first place? The person who began that Basenotes thread seems to have liked the top notes, which may or may not usually be unique in Creed scents, but even if that is the case, what does he want for the base notes? If you want amber and a wood note, you can just buy them from a company like the Perfumer’s Apprentice and mix them with the Creed scent you think is too weak, for instance. Otherwise, it sounds like some people may be asking for the impossible. I own an original formulation bottle of Liz Claiborne for Men, as well as a bottle of Land by Lacoste, and both smell great at first but don’t last very long, so I use them on days I can reapply without a problem.

It may be that such people get used to some recent designer scents, which use a lot of aroma chemicals in the base notes to generate longevity with strong projection. They may recognize that some Creed scents smell more natural but then they don’t seem to understand the “price” one may have to pay for that quality (meaning the kinds or amounts of certain base notes used)! Of course, one can argue that it only costs Creed perhaps a dollar or two more to create their scents and so they are “price gouging,” but I think that view doesn’t take into account how the “luxury products” market functions. In any case, I am confident in my ability to make a Creed-like scent to my own satisfaction (if I wanted to use a whole lot of the ones I liked), but I don’t see any point in trying because I prefer the much more complex vintage greats, and I doubt I could come close enough if I tried to make any of them myself. I do own about 2. 5 ounces of Green Irish Tweed, and at this point that is all the Creed I feel I’d really like to have.

UPDATE: The day after I wrote the above I wore GIT. The musk persisted and was strong but not “old school” strong. Otherwise, just about everything else persisted as well and the balance was very good. In the base I got a subtle lemony amber with a touch of something wood-like, along with the barest hint of a marine-like element. I can see why many newbies prefer Cool Water to GIT (especially considering how sweet it is; I had trouble perceiving sweetness in scents as a newbie), but to me GIT is a scent for the aficionado.


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