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DOLCE & GABBANA - LIGHT BLUE POUR HOMME

The sleek advertising collateral surrounding Dolce & Gabbana's 2007 Light Blue Pour Homme launch depict scenes of exotic Mediterranean isles… azure blue waters and sun-bronzed bodies. This award-winning citrus aromatic scent is not far off the mark… it has all the qualities of a sun-soaked cruise at the height of summer.

The masculine D&G Light Blue follows the incredibly successful feminine release of the same name, and has a shimmering opening of sicilian mandarin, grapefruit and bergamot. The citrus notes are invigorating and bracing. A masterful blend of rosemary, juniper, rosewood and pepper furnish this perfume with an aromatic heart, which feels resolutely Mediterranean in style. It is awash with crisp, oceanic freshness.

Musk, oakmoss and a sigh of incense provide the deep ocean upon which top and heartnotes are adrift… it will appeal to those who wear Armani's Acqua di Gio, or Issey Miyake's L'eau d'Issey Pour Homme.

 

Whilst marketed to men, Light Blue Pour Homme can be appreciated by both men and women. For a "light" summery scent, it leaves an impressive, persistent trail. Take a trip off the coast of charming Positano, without leaving the comfort of your home.

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VICTOR & ROLF - EAU MEGA

Avant garde Dutch design duo Victor & Rolf bounced back into the limelight in 2009 with a followup feminine perfume to their award-winning Flowerbomb… this time a glamorous vision in gold: Eau Mega!

 

Where Flowerbomb was all about a trillion flowers and pink spun sugar, Eau Mega reset the controls and provided women the world over with a delicious summery scent brimming with fresh greens and watery florals. Presented in a tall flacon with a distinct golden pump, Eau Mega opens with lemon, violet leaf and pear… three components that have a refined, almost hushed quality. This sparkling trio of topnotes bring into sharper focus a heart of gorgeous peony, aromatic basil and jasmine. It all feels upbeat, crisp and shiny. A dewy aquatic accord, combined with soft musks and sandalwood give Eau Mega an almost elemental feel… it is a perfume that brings with it, a cool breath of fresh air.

 

Eau Mega offers uniqueness and versatility in a world of cookie-cutter formulations. Women of all ages can indulge, and enjoy its joyful, youthful playfulness.

 

 

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GUERLAIN - HERITAGE

Guerlain's Heritage is like taking an stroll through a sunlit wilderness whilst there's a chill hanging in the air. Crisp copper-coloured leaves crunch underfoot as your breath billows out in frosty plumes. This Jean Paul Guerlain masculine of 1992 is a crisp, woody, spicy fragrance which is warm and self-assured. It has a sophisticated, almost aristocratic feel; epitomising a man who is cognisant of the modern age, but one who also holds traditional values in high regard.

 

Heritage opens with shimmering bergamot and crisp, leafy green notes. There is a time-honoured blend of lavender, lemon and nutmeg lying just beneath the surface, and it is played off against velvety sage and soft violets. A sophisticated heart of pepper, coriander, carnation and geranium beat over a lavish foundation of cedar, vetiver, patchouli, sandalwood and oakmoss. It is a fragrance of contrasts, flitting between ruggedness and tenderness, power and serenity.

 

Perfect for the office or for romance, Heritage is the scent of a meticulously groomed man.

 

A genuine expression of male elegance.

 

 

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CHRISTIAN DIOR - HYPNOTIC POISON

Following the colossal success of Dior's 80's powerhouse Poison, the French fashion/cosmetics giant went on to release a collection of Poison flankers in quick succession - all lined up like charming painted Matroshka dolls. Hypnotic Poison- an Oriental perfume - arrived in 1998, and is a celebration of opulent vanilla and addictive floral/spiced accords.

 

Hypnotic Poison could not be more removed from her older sibling… it has a creamy tonka/vanilla texture which is as soft as cashmere, and notes of soft woods and almond that proffer a lip-smacking marzipan vibe. Bewitching floral heartnotes of jasmine, tuberose, muguet and rose add a complexity and opulence, whilst a lingering base of amber and sandalwood see the perfume dance on skin for many hours. As the perfume is warmed by the body, the air around the wearer is imbued with a stunning vanilla/floral trail.

 

This release is voluptuous and provocative. Another ageless feminine from the esteemed house of Dior.

 

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CREED - ROYAL OUD

In the early 'noughties', the Western world finally cottoned on to a raw material that the Middle East has been using in perfumery and has held in high regard for millennia… that component is oud- a deeply balsamic, woody oil.

As soon as it hit the mainstream, this time-honoured ingredient began popping up in niche and designer releases faster than we can count, so it comes as little surprise that purveyors of luxury perfumes Creed have come to feature it in one of their own.

 

Royal Oud just happens to be an exceptional example of how oud can be worked into a perfume and leave us yearning for more. Warm cedar and fragrant sandalwood provide an enchanting backdrop against which this precious material is featured. Royal Oud opens with a shimmer of citrus and a prickle of pepper, before a toasty, lightly smoked melange of woods shifts to the surface. It smells distinguished and luxurious. A delectable trail of galbanum, tobacco-like spices, and commanding musks round off a scent that would not be out of place worn in a Persian palace.

 

Royal Oud, whilst at the more masculine end of the spectrum, can be worn by both sexes.

 

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PRADA - INFUSION D'IRIS

Italian fashion house Prada underwent a colossal overhaul of their brand in the early 2000's and bounced back into the limelight with their swanky tailored fashion and accessories pretty much for the first time since the 80's. Along with this colossal resurrection came a series of masterful perfumes for men and women.

 

In 2007, Prada launched the very first of it's perfumed "Infusions" which has since grown to become a series of luxurious studies in single-flower fragrances. Infusion d'Iris was met with much adulation in the perfume world and set the benchmark for further releases in the line.

 

Iris, as a note, tends to have a lovely husky texture… one that is soft and powdery. Infusion d'Iris has this fleecy quality in abundance, but it is so much more! A palette of mandarin, iris, cedar, orange and resinous mastic and benzoin have all been seamlessly integrated in this perfume to create a scent which is elegant and appealing. It is perhaps best worn liberally, more like an eau de cologne… it is soft as cotton and not the least bit overwhelming. It is the ideal scent to wear as a refreshing and sophisticated pick-me-up, or to perfume one's bed linen with.

 

Infusion d'Iris reminds us that luxury can be affordable.

 

Great deals can be found on whopping 13.5oz bottles, so fear not, and splash with mad abandon!

 

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CARON - YATAGAN

A Yatagan is a short antique Turkish sabre - one that was worn on the body primarily to indicate one's wealth and status. French perfume powerhose Caron used this object of desire as the inspiration behind this woody, spicy fragrance for men.

 

First introduced in 1976, Yatagan conjures scenes from antiquity - Ottoman horses, and exotic landscapes. It's immediate appeal lies in the beautiful mediterranean blend of oriental and woody accords.

 

Yatagan embraces coniferous woods in the opening - sappy green needles of pine collide with aromatic nuances such as lavender, basil, mint and watercress. But moments later, a deeply satisfying arrangement of precious woods shift to the fore which reassert its masculinity. They are somewhat diaphanous, allowing resinous ambery facets and animalic notes of castoreum and musk to peek through. The perfume is underpinned by a strong, earthy backbone of patchouli and incense, which lend a complex richness to this scent.

 

Yatagan embraces the best of green notes and woody accords, and translates them into a distant landscape that one might find between the foxed pages of a history book. This eau de toilette can be worn by men much in the same way the ancient sabre once was; as an indicator to allof his fine taste and keen regard for luxury.

 

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GUERLAIN - COLOGNE DU 68

The flagship Guerlain boutique in Paris has been trading at No. 68 Champs-Elysées for the past 99 years and has served as THE destination for perfume pilgrimages since the first world war. In 2006 - some 92 years on - the much-loved perfume house launched a cologne whose name memorialises their prestigious street address: "Cologne du 68".

 

A scent that has been designed to be enjoyed with liberal application, Cologne du 68 is an aromatic citrus blend… one that is both vivifying and uplifting and very much in keeping with Guerlain's vast back-catalogue of finely scented eaux.

 

A genderless perfume, Cologne du 68 features a crisp citrus opening - a zesty blast of bergamot, mandarin, petitgrain orange and orange blossoms. But just as one might be thinking "citrus overload!!", the sharpness is subdued by rousing florals including jasmine, freesia, frangipane, iris, ylang and rose. Somehow, however, the scent remains resolutely unisex - it has been meticulously blended to marry the more acerbic facets with the florals. Oily green aromatic accords of rosemary and sage manage to round out the composition, furnishing it with a slightly earthy, viridescent vibe.

 

Despite the name, it is an eau de toilette concentration, and is therefore much longer lasting than traditional colognes. Cologne du 68 is a non-complicated scent, without compromising on quality and luxuriousness.

 

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TOM FORD - VIOLET BLONDE

Regarded by many as the King of all that's chic and cool, Tom Ford unleashed Violet Blonde in 2011 - his most recent mainstream creation - much to the delight of die-hard perfumistas!

Following in the same vain as his previous releases Black Orchid, White Patchouli and Grey Vetiver, Tom has added another colour to the Ford Beauty rainbow, and indeed another interpretation of a single material from the perfumer's palette. Violet is obviously the protagonist in this epic fragrance narrative.

 

Violet Blonde is as glamourous as it gets! A beautifully orchestrated blend of violet leaf, Tuscan iris, Italian mandarin and pink peppercorns meet the nose upon first application. It feels spirited, sexy and playful. But moments later, one comes to recognise a luxurious orris butter which furnishes the scent with a powdery, suede-like sensuality. It mingles with blooming jasmine, musk and resinous / woody nuances which dance on skin for hours. The sum of all these components is totally bewitching… it feels enchanting and sophisticated - a modern day love potion for women who aim to beguile and ensnare.

 

Violet Blonde lasts many hours on skin. It has above average persistence, and will linger in the air moments after you leave a room. And who wouldn't like that to be the lasting impression you leave in the memories of others?

 

 

 

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SERGE LUTENS - CHERGUI

Looking for instant solace, warmth and coziness in a bottle? Then look no further! Master craftsman Serge Lutens created Chergui in 2005, and it has since become a mainstay in the Serge Lutens portfolio. Chergui has a cult-like following… both men and women the world over reach for their square-shouldered flacons and exclusive bell-shaped jars to apply this possessing elixir. It has just the right blend of elegance and sympathetic spiciness.

 

Chergui was named after a North African desert wind - one full of mystery and timeless enchantment. This deep chocolate-brown juice holds unbound pleasure… a wrist-sniffing perfume that will make your eyes roll back in your head. Ambery tendrils of tobacco leaf cartwheel over honey accords, iris, rose and musk. There is a hay-like sweetness that is warm and enveloping - one that adds complexity and a more-ish quality to the perfume. Soft curls of incense permeate throughout the composition, making for an exquisite scent that is every bit as unique and shape-changing as the shifting desert sands.

 

Chergui is not an overpowering perfume, rather, it speaks in hushed whispers, brushing your skin like the lightest of zephyrs. A rare beauty from this revered niche perfume house.

 

 

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