Category Archives: Fragrance Reviews.

Is there an Error to Eros?

Eros Versace for men

I recently acquired an official spray sample of of this 2012 scent.  I wore it twice, the first being just a half spray to the lower leg.  I used my hand to waft it up to my nose, and thought it smelled quite good, though not especially complex or special.  Then I wore it again with two sprays to the chest, but this was not a pleasant experience at all.  I then wrote up my Fragrantica.com review, which is:

I can understand the appeal, but for me, this is a “poster child” fragrance for that “sticky/synthetic” quality I do not find pleasant. Perhaps more naturals would have made it work for me. As it is, I would rather wear some Jacques Bogart scents that are also on the synthetic side of things. The Parfumo site has this note “pyramid:”

Mint leaf, Italian lemon, Green apple.
Venezuelan tonka bean, Ambroxan, Geranium.
Madagascan vanilla, Atlas cedar, Virginia cedar, Vetiver, Oakmoss.

It’s an interesting question why some aroma chemicals seem easier to “hide” in a composition and in the case of scents like Eros, is the idea not to try and mask those molecules, especially ambroxan, but to go ahead and do product testing to see if the target demographic is actually attracted to the “chemical overload.  I’d guess that was the case for Cool Water for Men, with its hefty dose of dihydromyrcenol, and I certainly would admit that in some cases I can enjoy compositions where it’s easy to detect an aroma chemical that doesn’t smell “natural.”  Of course, doing so can create “abstract” compositions, which at the very least avoids the possibility of someone saying that you just smell like a dollar store bottle of imitation vanilla.

The target demographic for Eros seems to be the young, “party” crowd, which one Fragrantica reviewer points out:

Sweet club banger, like a fougere Joop, if I wore this in the late 90s when I started clubbing it would have had the same effect.
Ladies like sweet, bold stuff like this, it’s the male equivalent of what they would wear.
I’m too old for this shit.

However, one thing I noticed while sitting in a store near the exit for more than a few minutes, with dozens of people walking by, and that is the impression such scents can make on those nearby.  Often, we hear the phrase, “cologne guy,” and a few of them walked by, yet it wasn’t only the fragrance that made an olfactory impression, though of course it’s possible that I have a more “sensitive” nose than most people due to how much study I’ve devoted to these concoctions since late 2007.  In any case, these guys smelled like ambroxan and a pork and garlic dish – it was rather nauseating.  Now it may be that most Americans don’t smell that unappealing quality (since they eat typical American diets whereas I’m a vegetarian), and it’s also possible that these guys didn’t care about how they smelled going to a utilitarian store, but I do wonder whether they smell that same way when they go to night clubs and parties.

NOTE:  If I didn’t have so many fragrances already, I might buy a “clone” of Eros, such as Dionysus by Dorall Collection because I’ve found, at least with this company’s scents, the compositions tend to be a bit simpler, but also sometimes don’t use as much of the “offending” aroma chemical, so in this case I’d guess that Dionysus contains less ambroxan than Eros.  However, even if that’s the case here, I doubt that would mean it was $10 or so well spent, because the other notes are not ones that do much for me, unlike say CK’s Shock for Him, which contains a tobacco note.

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Why is it so difficult to get information about some releases these days?

Essence de Bois Precieux Cigar for men

It’s 2019, not 1999, so it’s strange to see a line of fragrances that doesn’t appear to be supported by the corporate web site.  I am referring to what appears to be the Remy Latour “niche” line.  The fragrances are in long, thin cylinder bottles made from brushed metal.  As you might expect, they tend to fall over easily, but otherwise the presentation is considerably better than you would expect from today’s Remy Latour releases.  Here is their web page for “masculines:”

https://www.shop-parour.com/fr/28-homme

Note that the “parent company” is Parour, which also markets Lomani, Giorgio Valenti, and other “cheapos.”  The bottles are 75 ml sprays, and there is a plastic wrap around the cylindrical container that houses it (there’s a brochure in there too).  I saw some very good prices on a couple of these and purchased two, Essence de Bois Pecieux and Essence de Cachemire.  The former’s notes are listed as (from Fragrantica.com):

…saffron, oregano, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg and incense; middle notes are papyrus and cashmere wood; base notes are sandalwood, cedar, patchouli, bourbon vanilla, ambergris and musk.

and for the latter:

…bergamot, rhubarb, watermelon and lotus; middle notes are sage, white rose, cashmere wood, sea water and iris; base notes are oakmoss, ambergris, tonka bean and musk.

EdBP reminds me of mostly of Perry Ellis Oud: Black Vanilla Absolute and Rich, Warm, Addictive by Zara, perhaps a touch more of the former.  It’s not super strong (though it’s certainly sweet) and it doesn’t have much in the way of note clarity, depth, or complexity, despite the long list of “dark” notes.  It’s pleasant and at least nearly unisex, but if you’ve already got something along these lines, I would not advise spending a King’s ransom on it.  Some might find it cloying as well.  And because it does have a touch of a tobacco-like quality, some might reference Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille when discussing it, but that’s the problem, that is, I have only seen one bottle for sale in the USA, and I now own it!  I’m guessing these were meant for another market, but who knows?  It’s a bit frustrating – what reason could there be for this in the “internet age?”

EdC is a Fahrenheit type of fragrance, but without the heavy gasoline/petrol, though with an aquatic note added.  It’s fairly strong and lasts well, so again, at a low price I could see those who enjoy Fahrenheit (or thinking they would if it could be “modernized”) wanting to own a bottle of this one.  I would consider wearing it in warm weather, but sitting in one place as it continually wafts up directly into one’s nose may not be a great idea – it has a bit of a note clash to me.  There seem to be at least seven other releases of this type under the Remy Latour name, five of which marketed to women.  Fragrantica has them listed as 2014 releases, so one has to wonder why there is so little information about them by now.  At one time, when I didn’t see any for sale, I thought they might be testing the market or had planned to release them but some problem delayed or prevented it.  However, it is clear that they are real, and one has to question what Parour was doing – why not create a short Youtube video about the line, for example?  If anyone knows more about this line, please comment and let us know!

 

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McGregor Cologne by Faberge – why do some fragrances “fly under the radar?”

McGregor Brut Parfums Prestige for men

If you have not noticed, the prices on some vintage and discontinued fragrances have risen to dizzying heights on ebay.  And I know it’s not nonsense because I have made a few of those sales in the last couple of months!  I was curious and figured, why not try and see what happens?  How much are Candies for Men, Phoenix by Keith Urban, Kirra by Pacsun, Blue Sugar, or V Pour Homme by Valentino, as examples, “really” worth?  Then there are ones such as Catalyst for Men, which had been selling for next to nothing for a long time – why did the prices suddenly rise?  It could be something like Youtube hype, but whatever the case may be, at least a lot of these sales are real because I listed a bunch of these types of fragrances for sale, starting at “high” prices, and made more than a few sales so far.  I also get offers; in one case the person wanted to pay around $25, and I tried to explain to him/her that I was holding out for more because from what had recently sold, I should be able to get closer to $100, which I did less than a week later!

I’ve noticed that people asking me about selling to them or swapping with them on Basenotes and Fragrantica often talk in terms of their “collections” these days, rather than something they are going to wear on a regular basis – that’s a huge difference than ten years ago, when I can’t remember one person talking about “collecting” fragrance bottles (other than a few who talked about antique ones that were empty).  And once a collectibles market gets established, it can be “off to the races” with prices.  I find it odd that some of those who really appreciate these olfactory concoctions would think that some collectibles markets are acceptable but one for fragrances is not.  As things stand, if you really want Patou Pour Homme, Egoiste Cologne Concentree, or even Kirra, you have to buy them and nothing else.  Yes, you might be able to get something close, but as I’ve found with many “super cheapo” recommendations I’ve made over the years, most people either don’t believe it or, for whatever reason, must have the “real thing.”  And then there are the speculators…

But then we come upon the example of McGregor Cologne, which I remember seeing years ago selling for around $12 or so, for 50 ml or more.  The notes for this early 1980s release are:

Top notes are lime and sage; middle notes are incense, anise and coconut milk; base notes are patchouli and vetiver.

Because I thought it was likely “drug store dreck,” I didn’t give it a second thought.  Nobody talked about it and it was by the company that released Brut (at that time I thought of Brut as a great example of the “low end,” though now I have some vintage Brut 33 can wear it occasionally – an interesting, natural-smelling, floral fougere).  Moreover, the note list suggested a possible irritating clash, in terms of my preferences (and I generally find a strong lime note to dominate compositions).  When I changed my mind and decided to purchase a spray bottle, not long ago, there were still hardly any reviews of it, and those left quite a bit to be desired, in terms of what I look for in a review.  The “best” contained this statement about what the scent is actually like (from Fragrantica):

…there really is a subtlety to this scent for which the knowledge that you’re smelling an early 80s release by Faberge in no way prepares you: the lime and sage notes dominate, but in harmony with a restrained patchouli darting in and out over top of a steady bass line of vetiver. Elsewhere, I’ve seen McGregor referred to as “harsh” but that’s the name and the company getting in the way of the scent: this isn’t Danny Boyle’s Trainspotting sequel (Begbie about to head butt), it’s the James Bond of Sean Connery in grey flannel, eyebrow cocked.

I did not get much patchouli nor anise, and while there was something sweetening it up a bit, it didn’t register as coconut milk to me (and I used to drink that once in a while).  The lime was obvious, though, and lasted a long time, sort of tied to the dry herbal element of sage.  Playing off that duo was the incense and vetiver, creating a slightly textured quality that’s very nice and lasts a long time.  It’s smooth yet distinct.  Projection was moderate after the first hour or two, but the overall strength is great for a cologne.  While wearing it I was thinking that this could pass for a 1980s Creed, such as Bois du Portugal, which is also simple revolving around lavender and amber.  I certainly think I’ll wear McGregor more than BdP, because the composition is rather unique.  And it’s fun to think, “this is niche-like, though better than today’s niche, and cost about how much a couple people would spend on a frugal meal at McDonald’s!”  If you are a “blind buyer,” there’s little reason not to try this one, so long as you don’t hate lime or actually are seeking a fragrance with powerful synthetics (such as the proverbial “party scent”).

 

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Projection, “sillage,” longevity, and an explanation for why reviews for certain fragrances might vary considerably.

Derby Club House Ascot Armaf for men

The example I’ll use is pictured above (by Armaf), which has listed notes (according to Fragrantica.com) of:

Top notes are green notes, lemon and bergamot; middle notes are sage, cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon; base notes are cedar, oakmoss, tobacco, amber, labdanum and musk.

This sounds like an “old school”/”powerhouse” fragrance, and it might be (I’ll get to that in a moment).  The first couple of times I wore it, my perceptions varied, which is not uncommon.  Sometimes it takes three or four wearings to really understand what seems to be occurring, but with this scent things were more difficult than usual, and it took me a while to figure out why.

The vast majority of reviews at Fragrantica are positive, with one person saying he feels like he threw his money out the window.  Why?  I’d guess he didn’t think it was strong enough, because the notes are certainly there and it’s not some sort of “chemical nightmare.”  The ratings of potency show that a small number of people think it’s weak, and with one spray on my first wearing I was thinking the same thing.  At first, there was a kind of competition between the fruit and “green notes” (I’m guessing galbanum) on the one hand, and a leathery woods/incense (I never got obvious tobacco and the spices seem rather mild), but eventually it settles mostly on the latter.

During my last wearing, I used four sprays to the chest, and I was thinking that while it’s stronger than past wearings, I still wasn’t getting much in the way of spices or tobacco.  Even the dominant notes weren’t that strong.  However, when I walked around other people, they said it was really strong, and that’s when I knew something odd was at work.  My guess is that it’s the kind of musk being used, which one can quickly become anosmic to, but others smell clearly (at least as you walk by them).  It did impart a kind of tingly quality, but not much in the way of scent (to me); however, when I used my hand to waft the scent directly into the nose, I could smell the notes much more clearly.

Is this a case of great projection but poor “sillage?”  Or vice versa?  The point, IMO, is that it seems it was formulated with weak notes that interest me (other than the leathery quality), but strong musk that doesn’t register much one way or the other, and may cause a certain amount of anosmia rather quickly.  The longevity seems really good, though, regardless of how much or what note you can detect.  Overall, this is an excellent fragrance if this is what you want, but it also may be a frustrating experience for some.  If you are used to the vintage greats, like me, you might think that it might work for layering purposes, but it’s best not to wear by itself, because you have the option of wearing a scent that allows you to smell the notes you want to smell clearly and with strength, for hours.

 

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What can oakmoss do for a fragrance? The Rochas Man example.

Rochas Man Rochas for men

Not long ago I purchased a lot/group of fragrances, and one of the bottles was Rochas Man.  The liquid was brownish, unlike the bottle I already owned (2011), which is mostly clear, with just a slight pink tint, and I had read that recent bottles have this brownish coloration, so I assumed it wasn’t of much value (considering what I already own, how rarely I wear Rochas Man, and what the current prices are for it).  But before I go further, I’ll quote the note description at Fragrantica.com:

…bergamot and gentle balsamic notes of lavender. Pure and intense jasmine pulses with the heart of perfume along with gentle grassy and fresh notes of lily-of-the-valley and the touch of sensual musk. The base is soft, creamy and warm together with vanilla, sandal, amber and the gourmand tone of coffee.

There may be a hint of something grassy but I never got lily-of-the-valley, nor much of any wood note.  Instead, it’s a lavender gourmand, quite similar to New Haarlem by Bond Number 9.  The obvious question is, “can I get something very close to NH if I buy a $20 bottle of Rochas Man?”  Of course, everyone has different thresholds for difference/similarity in these situations, but for me there was a major divergence in my two RM man bottles, which were formulated just one year apart!

The 2011 bottle (batch 1263) with the clear liquid/very slight pink tint is definitely harsher and less complex to me (and at least a bit “synthetic”).  As you might expect, they smell very similar, but the problem is that the 2011 becomes irritating after a while, whereas the scent from the 2010 bottle (batch code 0273) is enjoyable for hours!  While 2010 may be a bit more “masculine” than NH, which is fine with me, they are more or less on the same level, in terms of my ability to appreciate the scent for hours without irritation.  When I looked on the RM boxes, I noticed that “Evernia prunastri (oakmoss) is listed on the 0273 batch but not the 1263 one!  The other difference is that 79% volume is on the 0273 but 80% was on the 1263.

I’ve read that the very recent formulations of RM are a lot weaker than older ones, and I’d say the 1263 is certainly at least strong enough, but while that may satisfy most, the irritation factor is huge for me.  And in these situations, the great thing is that not only can I sell that 1263 bottle, but I would now certainly consider selling or swapping my New Haarlem bottle, which to me is a huge “bonus” to buying the lot, which I certainly didn’t buy because the RM bottle was included (I thought it was likely a newer bottle because the other bottles in it were released within the last five years).  Of course I can’t say that whatever amount of oakmoss in the 0273 bottle made the difference, but if it did, to me it’s a huge difference, and is consistent with those who lament the “death of perfumery” due to materials restrictions!

NOTE:  In 2015 someone posted this in a Basenotes.net thread:

The bottle in the plastic moulded box (brown juice – early version) smells significantly bolder, thicker, dustier and sweeter – in a good way – than the version with the pink cardboard box (pinkish juice).

Both of mine come in regular cardboard boxes (pink).  On Fragrantica, there was this claim:

 It was reformulated in 2008/2009 by J.M Duriez.

So, it may be that they went with a cheaper box but my 0273 bottle is still of the original formulation.  It certainly seems that way to me, as there is nothing “cheap” about it and the “quality” is very close to New Haarlem, IMO.  And while Legend by Michael Jordan compares favorably to my 1263 bottle, I would rank the 0273 bottle as clearly superior to Legend.

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A reviews of reviews: I Puredistance.

Image result for i puredistance

My idea for this “review of reviews” (and I might do more of them – let me know what you think) is to give readers a sense of how I try to determine if I should try to obtain at least a decant of a scent I’ve never sampled.  However, I think there will be more interesting insights to come of it; you can just for yourself.  On another level, though, I think that I may have gotten to the point where I find how people perceive these olfactory concoctions to be more interesting than the scents themselves, with perhaps a few exceptions.  I want to start with I by Puredistance because it’s the first fragrance reviewed in the 2018 edition of “Perfumes: The Guide,” and it was given a 4 star review (by Luca Turn).  In that review, what he learn of the actual smell is that it’s a smooth, fresh powdery, abstract floral.  We also learn that the ingredients probably cost a lot, it is of a “classical” style, and that the perfumer was Annie Buzantian, whom LT considers one of today’s best perfumers.

What we don’t learn is if he will wear it sometimes, if he thinks it has “unisex potential,” at least for some male demographics, and what fragrances that cost a lot less it is similar to (and I’m sure more than a few readers would like to know these things!).  Over at Fragrantica.com, we can learn a few more things about this 2007 release:

The perfume opens as top note with a fresh, ozone-tangerine blossom blend with a hint of cassis, complemented with neroli bigarade and crisp watery nuances.

The heart of the fragrance warms to a sophisticated, modern blend of magnolia, rose wardia & jasmine; parmenthia & natural mimosa, before finally settling softly into the rich classical notes of sweet amber, vetiver and white musk.
The perfume extract contains 32 % perfume oil.

So, does LT want to smell this himself on at least a fairly regular basis?  What about on his wife?  Or other women?  Or children?  Or pets?  Could it be used as a room spray?  How about spraying it on a card, putting that card in a zip lock sandwich bag, and taking it out now and then, if you like it so much?  But my first question to him might be, who is going to want to buy a very expensive “late-sixties” type green floral scent who doesn’t already own one that is “good enough?”  But for the moment, let’s now turn out attention to the Fragrantica reviews, one of which provides us with a sense of the rationale for it (if you aren’t poor):

This perfume is definitely perfect for any special occasion. I would suggest this perfume for wedding, opera, ballet, meeting with important persons, etc. And this perfume is not just really nice, but it also lasts all day.

“Soapy” seems to be a popular way of describing it, for example:

…opening with its bright, fresh combination of neroli, orange and other white flowers: very natural and uplifting! It dries down a little more soapy…

Now what’s interesting about this to me is that the other day I was wearing Jaguar’s Excellence (the EdT), thinking (again) that the drydown is something I would expect from a niche scent.  The notes for that one are:

…grapefruit and mandarin combined with pink pepper. A heart provides floral notes of lily of the valley, iris and orange blossom, to warm you up and to enrich warm and cuddly base notes of vanilla, amber and tonka.

So what could I get from the Puredistance scent that I couldn’t get from Excellence (which cost me around $7 for a 100 ml bottle)?  There could be a touch of galbanum to create a green quality, though I might not like Excellence that way (and I could buy some galbanun, which isn’t expensive, and add a bit to a decant of Excellence).  What about Halston’s 1-12?  if you have patience you can get a vintage bottle on ebay for very little (as I did a few months back), and then you’ll get a green floral scent of a “classic” style.  If you are male, you might prefer these more “masculine” compositions.  Speaking of male perceptions, one Fragrantica reviewer who is also a long time Basenotes member said this about the Puredistance scent:

High-end anti-aging cream type of smell. Inoffensive watery/ozonic floral that’s nowhere close being even barely distinctive or interesting. Not to talk about the overall ozonic vibe.. Is this what you’d expect from an over 2000 bucks fragrance?

Do you like this smell? Get a Carita face cream. It’s cheaper and, at least, it moisturizes.

Now I’ve also got vintage White Shoulders, and White Linen (not that I wear them), along with Teint de Neige, along with a “masculine” that possesses this floral creamy/lotion with citrus type quality (Yang, by Jacques Fath), but I rarely wear them.  Why would I even bother to try a free sample of I?  And even if I liked the composition and thought it was unique relative to what I already own, it’s likely I could use layering to create a similar effect (does LT talk about layering at all in the book?).  And then when I look at the other reviews in the free Amazon preview for this book, I see that most were given 3 stars or less (5 is the highest rating).  My biggest criticism of this review, though, is that if this is a “classic” scent, then why can’t LT which ones form the 1960s (or 1970s, or 1980s, etc.) that it is similar to?  That would really help those who might want such a scent and also have the patience to look for a bargain on ebay or at a local garage sale or thrift shop.  Again, I get the sense that he and his wife are not considering the fact that most fragrance hobbyists are not millionaires.

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Is PS (Paul Sebastian) Fine Cologne similar to Heritage by Guerlain?

PS Fine Cologne Paul Sebastian for men

This question was  asked recently on a Basenotes.net thread (and it’s possible that the most recent formulations are similar, for all I know):

http://www.basenotes.net/threads/458281-Guerlain-Heritage-smells-like-PS-Fine-Cologne

While these two fragrances (I’m assuming the original formulations) are “in the same ballpark,” I don’t think of them as especially similar.  Putting aside note articulation (which is much better in the Guerlain, for the dominant notes), PS is simpler and cruder.  However, the notes in PS are also in Heritage, except for myrrh.  Those are (taken from Parfumo.net):

Lavender, Sage, Mugwort, Musk, Myrrh, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Vanilla.

However, Fragrantica lists the notes as:

…amber, lavender, musk, jasmine, oakmoss, sage, ylang-ylang and rose.

The notes for Heritage, from Fragrantica.com, are:

…bergamot, orange, aldehydes, green accords, lavender, lemon, petit grain, violet, clary sage, nutmeg… pepper, coriander, orris root, along with rose, jasmine, carnation, honeysuckle, geranium and lily-of-the-valley…cedar, vetiver, patchouli, amber, tonka bean, oakmoss, sandalwood and powdery vanilla.

So, it  certainly doesn’t suggest a “newbie nose” if you were to perceive the two as similar. For me, Heritage is a complex sandalwood scent, whereas PS is more about myrrh, and the blending is quite different.  I decided to wear PS in order to contribute to the thread, and it struck me as being most similar to Third Man Caron.  Basenotes has the notes for that one as:

Lavender, Rosemary, Anise, Bergamot.
Geranium, Jasmin, Rose, Fern, Carnation.
Amber, Musk, Moss, Cedarwood, Patchouli, Tonka, Vanilla.

Again, I’d say PS is simpler and cruder, though Third Man is also less articulated than Heritage, which is perhaps why it seemed more similar to me. I don’t remember smelling any anise in Third Man; otherwise, I’d likely perceive it quite a bit differently.  Others have said it’s like the Eau de Parfum version of Old Spice, and yes, that also makes sense (but it doesn’t seem to be as spicy).  The great thing about PS is that you can still obtain a “vintage” formulation for low cost, at least on ebay (unlike vintage Heritage and Third Man), so it’s worth considering (and it’s not exactly like Third Man).    However, some have complained that the new formulation by EA Fragrances is too weak or in some other way quite bad, so you can look for the FFI/French Fragrances, Inc. version or the earlier Paul Sebastian, Inc. one.  I’ve seen some on ebay recently and the label on the bottom of the bottle reads:

DIST.
PAUL SEBASTIAN, INC.
OCEAN, NJ 07712
4 FL. OZ.

or something similar, and there should also be a batch code stamped over some of that text (four digits seems common).  Now if you are afraid of wearing an “old man” scent, you probably won’t like it.  The first hour or so is a bit chaotic for my tastes, but it does come together and and I like the myrrh note in particular.  To me, it’s the kind of scent worth buying if you can find vintage at a low price because you may come to enjoy it even if you don’t like it initially (which is my experience).  And with vintage prices rising, it may be a good “investment” if you decide you just can’t wear it, for whatever reason.  Another idea is to try the vintage aftershave, which may be weaker or a bit different.

PS does feel a bit like an “amateur effort” to me, due to how it’s blended to come across as one major accord, but I have no problem with that, so long as it’s enjoyable.  Is it really such an effort?  The “story” is that PS was “a potion [Leonard Paul] Cuozzo had been improving for over a decade together with New York perfumer Fritzsche Dodge:”

https://www.perfumemaster.com/design-house/paul-sebastian

It would be interesting to hear what Dodge has to say, but is this a person or a company?  There is some information here that suggests the latter:

http://www.perfumeprojects.com/museum/marketers/Fritzsche.shtml

Overall, it sounds like a “right place, right time” type of story, but my main point is that PS is a scent like Stetson, in that it seems to often get dismissed out of hand as being “drug store dreck,” which in the case of PS is ironic, because their marketing strategy was to cultivate an “upscale” image.  However, the reality is that in at least “vintage” formulation, it’s not only “high quality” compared to today’s designers (and perhaps most niche at this point) but is very strong, so that a four ounce bottle of the “fine cologne” might last you many years!  And while the first couple of hours might be rather crude and simple compared to the vintage greats, the drydown definitely holds its own, and for me it’s just a matter of personal preferences at that point.

I’ve never liked Caron Pour un Homme, even in vintage formulation, which feels too unbalanced (with searing lavender), and I view PS as a “step up,” but I’d say that PS even fares well against Bois du Portugal, which is smoother but rather simple.  There are quite a few vintage scents in this same “ballpark,” so it’s a matter of personal taste, but PS should not be discounted in any way (at least in vintage formulation).  This could certainly be a niche scent today, though most don’t smell as natural as PS, the major “problem”  being associations with fragrances that are reminiscent of older male relatives.  I view PS in a “glass half full” way, that is, the great advantage of it for the aficionado is that it is similar to so many others, some of which being very expensive, so you can just go on ebay, do a little research, get a great deal on vintage PS, and then you are “set” for this type of scent.  Another example is Sartorial by Penhaligon’s, which from what I remember is also rather similar!

UPDATE:  I came upon an 8 ounce splash PS Fine Cologne bottle.  The box said French Fragrances, Inc. (with the “short list of ingredients”), but the label on the bottom of the bottle said Paul Sebastian, Inc.

 

 

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