The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


13 Comments

New Release: Hermann A Mes Cotes Me Paraissait Une Ombre by Etat Libre d’Orange

Hermann1-500x500WHAT I SMELL:  Hermann A Mes Cotes Me Paraissait Une Ombre or Hermann, as it will be known from this point forward, opens up quite musky with a tingling pepper and a rather aqua-esque green.  But soon enough, the perfume moves to a dusty and brown vetiver.  The perfume feels artificially clean, but at the same time artificially earthy.  After a bit more, a light incense covers the perfume with shards of a sweetened floral patchouli which provides the perfume’s central core.  Overall, the perfume feels like it was manufactured in a factory next to the industrial detergents.  Need I go on?…OK…if I must.  Moving forward, the moisture is completely sucked out of the perfume and there’s a steely gray and metallic sharp edge that makes Hermann feel like it sits on a linear plane, like a flattened laser beam that crosses the horizon.  Of course, as soon as I start writing that, the perfume begins to soften and lightly powder.  At the same time, Hermann becomes incredibly dry; so much so, that breathing it in makes you feel as if your sinuses are about to cave in.  As the perfume is a play on shadows, I have to say that it leaves you with an aura and an “alternative self” because it does feel as if the perfume follows one as a shadow.  I gave Hermann several wearings and each time it made me head to the sink to look for my heavy-duty medical soap and scrubber.  Unfortunately, it left me with a shadow that I just couldn’t shake.

From the Etat Libre d’Orange website:


7 Comments

Etat Libre d’Orange Cologne

Etat-Libre-CologneWHAT I SMELL:  Cologne opens with a clean crisp warmed bergamot and blood orange.  It’s tangy and sparkling without being overly juiced.  An orange blossom soon joins the mix of this nice and easy composition.  Not too sweet and not too sour, the perfume maintains this perfect balance of carefree wear.  After around 10 minutes a musk comes into play.  It’s not too clean and it brings in some added dimension.  However, it does make the fragrance seem more like Febreeze than a perfume.  After another 5 minutes, a sugared element comes forth making the orange blossom more prevalent and it helps to dissipate the musk.  And then a bit later, the jasmine comes in to give the cologne a really nice boost of fresh florals.   In the end, Cologne stays in this easy to wear mode that works at being fresh, without being too fresh.

Composition: Blood orange, orange blossom, bergamot, jasmine, musk, leather…

Welcome to LAWHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Welcome to L.A.  The ease of sun and casual living with a hint of a wicked underbelly.

THREE ADJECTIVES THAT DESCRIBE COLOGNE:  easy, wearable, one-off

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT COLOGNE:  CaFleureBon, Colognoisseur, Perfume-Smellin’ Things

BOTTOM LINE:  I like Cologne but I don’t like it.  How’s that?  I like it because it takes the standard citrus perfume and make it a little bit dirty.  Unfortunately, the musk gets in the way; and it seems to be random.  At times, the musk isn’t present, then all of a sudden it comes charging through.  Take away the musk and you have a winner.

  • Bone Rating: 2.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Woody Spicy
  • Classification: Unisex
  • Expense: $149 for 100 ml Eau de Parfum


4 Comments

Tom of Finland by Etat Libre d’Orange

Yesterday was my partner’s birthday and I gave him a present of Tom of Finland Eau de Parfum.  This was a fun gift.  For those in the know, Touko Laaksonen, better known as Tom of Finland, created erotic illustrations primarily revolving around gay leather and hyper-masculine men.  I think that it’s ironic that this caricature of masculinity has been turned into an Eau de Parfum, but that’s part of the fun with Etat Libre d’Orange.  So one would expect a rough and tumble scent based on the inspiration.   What you get instead is a lovely, sweet and soothing suede composition.

The first thing you notice is that in the bottle, Tom of Finland is a very bright and artificial orange color.  I wonder if this is a new formulation since all ads show a clear composition.  Upon application, you immediately smell burnt rubber, pine and lemon.  The pine and lemon quickly dissipate and you are left with the rubber and an introduction of leather.  At this point, it’s a bit harsh and you wonder where besides a smoky dive bar you would wear this.  However, as the dry down occurs, the leather turns to suede, with vanilla and a touch of powder.  It turns out to be rather sweet and intoxicating and surprisingly luxurious.  Now, I’m not a fan of leather scents, but this is a fragrance that I would wear.

From the Etat Libre d’Orange website:

This is a fresh, pure water that can wash away the sins of the night. Clothing becomes merely ornamental, an insignificant wrapping paper that only serves to cloak the true erotic power of the flesh. This is a man who wants to play, to love, to ravish, and to be free of all inhibitions. Tom is sex.

Tom of Finland Notes:

Aldehydes, lemon, birch leaves, pine, safraleine, pepper, cypress, galbanum, geranium, vanilla, tonka bean, orris, vetiver, pyrogened styrax, suede, musk, ambergray…

  • Bone Rating: 4 out of 5 possible bones
  • Classification: Masculine
  • Expense: $80 for 50ml EDP