The Scented Hound

Abbreviated perfume & fragrance reviews from one man's perspective


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Vintage Guerlain Chamade Eau de Cologne

I love living in my adopted country of Mexico, but will wholeheartedly admit that one of the downsides of living in this beautiful country is the access to perfume.  Mexicans love their perfume; when you walk down the street everyone leaves behind a trail of perfumed bliss.  That said, you can find the standard department store fragrances without issue, but anything out of the ordinary (niche or high end) is impossible to get, at least here in the Yucatan.  And forget shipping from overseas, Mexico, like many countries, does not allow for the shipment of “flammable liquids.”  So yes, getting the latest and greatest new releases in a timely manner is something that I have had to learn to live without.

Another thing I miss is the ability shop on eBay.  Instead, here they have a similar site called MercadoLibre.  But perfume shopping is pretty much limited to the same perfumes found in the stores.  Of course, that doesn’t keep me from scanning the site every now and then just as I did the other day.  To my surprise, someone was selling an unopened bottle vintage bottle of Guerlain Chamade Eau de Cologne.  They said the bottle was 200 ml and in researching pricing, I found it to be a pretty good deal.  So I thought what the heck, this doesn’t happen every day and I have never ordered anything from MercadoLibre, so I went for it.  The shipper said they would ship “next day,” but I have to admit I was skeptical.  Two days after placing my order, a heavy box arrived from Mexico City.  I opened the box which was packed perfectly and found the largest bottle of perfume I had ever seen.  My first thought is that it was a factice, but once I put my nose up to the stopper I could clearly smell that it was indeed perfume.  The perfume didn’t come with a box, and the size was not labeled on the bottle.  After some research it was determined that the bottle is a 16 oz. or 500 ml bottle….for the size, the purchase turned out to be an incredible deal.

For size comparison, the Vol de Nuit on the left is 3 oz. and the Mitsouko on the right is 1.7 oz.

I love my Guerlains with Vol de Nuit being one of my all time favorite perfumes, but I never really paid much attention to Chamade.  A light green floral is perfect for the hot weather here, but that doesn’t mean I would like the perfume.  So did I make a good purchase?

WHAT I SMELL: 

The beauty of Chamade is instantaneously revealed with it’s opening of bright sparkling aldehydes which quickly meld with a green stem-ladened hyacinth.  This is spring in a bottle…I picture bouncing lambs running on hills of green.  The opening of this perfume is utterly delightful and so incredibly pretty.  For being a vintage bottle that is most likely from the 1970s, the top notes are surprisingly intact.  The perfume stays in this greenish floral bliss for quite some time, but after some time its met with a layer of powder that smells like makeup.  After more time, the galbanum takes front and center as the perfume dries out and continues to powder.  The perfume is green without being too sharp and to me this makes this easier to wear.  And just when I thought the perfume couldn’t get any prettier, out comes a floral heart with rose at the center topped with a comforting smooth vanilla and sandalwood combination, which helps to cut the powdery green.  Here, the perfume moves from the spring to the more serious…or should I say more seriously beautifully refined and mature.

From the Guerlain website:

For the first time in perfumery, Guerlain introduced to a formula the green and fruity accent of blackcurrant bud, freshened with a green harmony of hyacinth. Lastly, this symphony is embellished with Guerlinade, which majestically showcases jasmine, vanilla and sandalwood.

One of these Easter lovelies is probably wearing Chamade…which one is it?

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Although launched in 1969, Chamade to me is quintessentially early to mid-1960s as it’s rooted in the past and not so much in the modern era of the time.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE CHAMADE:  springtime, happiness, contentment

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT CHAMADE:  Yesterday’s Perfume, Perfume Posse

BOTTOM LINE: Chamade, where have you been all of my life?  This perfume is so pretty and easy to wear that it might be one of those perfumes that just doesn’t get the love that it deserves.  As for me, I’ll continue to search on MercadoLibre for the parfum extrait version.  Chamade is truly a love.

  • Bone Rating: 4.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Fruity Floral Oriental
  • Nose:  Jean-Paul Guerlain
  • Classification: Leans feminine
  • Expense:  Varies for vintage


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Hacivat by Nishane

WHAT I SMELL:  At first sniff Hacivat opens with a quiet and slightly chalky bergamot topped with a soft and lightly sweetened pineapple with hints of citrus.  I thought the perfume would go on loud, but instead it’s beautifully muted and contained.  Along with the sweetened notes, there’s an underlying smell of pencil shavings that gives the opening some depth.  The perfume stays in this mild sweetness for some time and that’s perfectly fine with me, because it’s incredibly calm and reassuring in it’s essence.  After some time, the citrus makes way for the woody.  Now it’s time for the perfume to grow as every minute it seems to build with a warm and lightly floral cedar.  What was soft and reassuring in the beginning is now bolder and rather masculine with a patchouli note that seems to dominate.  Here the perfume turns to a slightly sugared, but rather flat wood.  After a great while longer, the perfume begins to project and dry with some powder.  Overall, Hacivat’s development to me was a mixed bag:  the opening was incredible, the middle stage had me worried, but in the end the perfume begins to redeem itself with a softness that’s rather elegant and again, rather reassuring.  But as I say that, out comes a soured note that leaves me a little cold.

From the NIshane website:

Is a tribute to elegance, kindness, competence, and love of art. Inspired by the traditional shadow play character, this eau cypre will help you live in your best dreams by the everlasting sparkles of its joyful structure made of the stimulating notes of pineapple and bergamot backed with the genuine woody notes. Enjoy being loved!

TOP NOTES – bergamot – pineapple – grapefruit

HEART NOTES – jasmine – patchouli – cedarwood

BASE NOTES – clearwood – oakmoss – dry timberwood

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Ambivalence.  I love it…I like it…I don’t like it.  Every sniff leaves me with a different feeling.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE HACIVAT:  secure, even-tempered, safe

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT HACIVAT:  BL’eauOG, That Luxurious Feeling

BOTTOM LINE:  As mentioned above, every time I wear this perfume I get a little something different from it, but the one consistent aspect is that I kind of like it, but am not anywhere near loving it.  And that to me that’s rather disappointing.

  • Bone Rating: 3 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Citrus Chypre Woody
  • Nose:  Jorge Lee
  • Classification: Unisex, but leans masculine
  • Expense: Approximately $240 for 50 ml perfume extrait.


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Encore Une Fois by Art de Parfum – Limited Edition

WHAT I SMELL:  Encore Une Fois opens with a wonderfully rich bergamot sprinkled with a sparkling brown sugar sweetness. Very quickly, a swirl of light florals rise to the top along with a tinge of greenish stems. It’s lush without being heavy and it seems to bounce off of the skin. As its journey continues, a cedar note takes the perfume from the garden to the edge of the forest. Here, the sunshine of the golden ambergris makes the perfume radiate with a warmish hue of splendor and security. After a bit, a chalky flattened note begins to tone down the golden aspects of the perfume and moves it to the more woody. After quite some time, a caramelized incense rises lightly off the skin making the perfume more refined and rather mysterious with just the right amount of perfection. From beginning to end, Encore Une Fois is an interesting perfume in the most beautiful and original way.

From the Art of Perfume website :

Top Notes: bergamot, orange flower leaves

Heart Notes: purple, incense, peony, Lily of the Valley, saffron flower

Base Notes: ambergris, patchouli, cedar, benzoin, balsam perals, caramel, white musk

WHAT IT SMELLS LIKE TO ME:  Sunlit woodscape.

THREE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE ENCORE UNE FOIS:  journeyed, semi-bright, mysterious

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT ENCORE UNE FOISAustralian Perfume Junkies , Colognoisseur

BOTTOM LINE:  At first spritz you do not expect that Encore Une Fois will transform from the bright and light to the more woody and mysterious. Such a transition might be jolting in many perfumes. Here, the movement in development is so seamless it feels completely natural.  Encore Une Fois is a beautiful perfume that’s worth the journey.

  • Bone Rating: 3.5 out of possible 5 bones
  • Scent: Floral Woody Musk
  • Classification: Unisex
  • Expense: Approximately $200 for 50 ml perfume extrait.