• Dan Naughton

5 Reviews From Our Upcoming Book!!!

Here are 5 reviews from the upcoming book I am co-authoring with my partner and fellow fragrance lover Claire Sprigmore (aka Smurfygurly). "101 Fragrances You Must Try" is the working title. We feature all kinds of men's and women's fragrances. Designer, niche and cheapie scents are all included and we discuss the good, bad and indifferent.

Aqua Amara - Bulgari ****

A mandarin fragrance for boys and girls that want to smell fresh and get noticed! This is quite the bombastic fantastic freshie indeed. I remember a while ago Dan getting all excited about it and I thought it was OK, quite nice and definitely a strong performer for a fresh scent. He wore it again quite recently and I really enjoyed it. It grabbed my attention fully this time around and I realised there was something a little bit special about this masculine marketed shiny copper pebble. I wanted to wear it for myself and so I did! I surreptitiously crept into Mr Smelly’s chamber of stink and spritzed 10 sprays upon myself (quite unnecessarily by the way, 5 sprays would have easily sufficed). I proceeded about my day with what felt like an amber hued glow surrounding my person for at least an arm’s length. At work my female colleagues agreed that this is definitely something that can be worn by the ladies too. Basically, a mandarin fragrance with a hint of sweet florals and a touch of understated sea breeze with none of that disgusting seaweed that can often be found in fragrances that share this genre. Highly recommended. (Claire)

One Million – Paco Rabanne **

I’m standing in a fragrance shop perusing the designer fragrances and a couple in their 30s are next to me. “What’s that one you like?” the lady asks her partner. “That gold one innit?” the man replies. The answer is now clear... “that’s it ... this one..... millions” the lady exclaims. One Million is a huge success, thanks in part to its gaudy gold bar design and ubiquitous advertising campaign. The smell is a not unpleasant mixture of synthetic apple-like freshness and hubba bubba essential oil. The failure to name the numerous flankers One Billion, One Trillion, Two Million etc was an epic fail.  (Dan)

Portrait of a Lady - Frederic Malle *****

This is a modern classic and a must try for any fragrance aficionado, even if you hate rose you should still experience the magic of Portrait of a Lady at least once.

The lady in this particular portrait is a bold and flamboyant Rose, she is never without her best friend and confidante Miss Raspberry Resplendent. Together they cause a stir at every party. So picture the two ladies sweetly fragrant at a lavish ball. There is a huge baroque dining table laden with spicy delights, you can smell the cumin in these delicious offerings but only just, more so you can smell the wood from the table and the two ladies themselves. Then please notice the dessert table, there are vanilla custard flans sprinkled lightly with cinnamon. In the background incense is burning, offering a sweet, lightly smoky ambiance. The ladies party all night and their perfumes are always noticed, though some of the other female guests whisper behind their hands that the pair are far too loud, I think they are the perfect party guests when the mood is right.  (Claire)

Spice and Wood – Creed *****

Certainly both spicy and woody, this one is also somewhat fresh and very classy. I am sure I pick up on a significant but unlisted vetiver note. Spice and Woods sits somewhere between the crowd pleasing affability of the ubiquitous Aventus and the masculine sophistication of Bois du Portugal. It doesn’t smell like either. Fresh and citrusy with the sweetness of the apple and with an undefinable spicy characteristic plus warming woods in the base. - Spice and Wood is one of the highest quality smelling Creeds. This was a surprise moving in gift from the amazing and far too generous Claire. The constantly increasing price is preposterously high and the fragrance presumably sits in the category of goods where the normal laws of economics are inapplicable and the product becomes more attractive to customers as its price rises from extravagant to extortionate. It’s probably more expensive now than it was when you started reading this review. (Dan)

Sauvage – Dior **

Sauvage is the epitomy of a modern masculine fragrance. Francois Demachy and Dior know what they are doing. This 2015 release was probably years in the making. It would have been trialled on numerous focus groups and undergone countless refinements before the near perfect, mass appealing, fresh smelling early 21st century smell of man was put on the market. Sauvage combines bergamot, lavender and a supercharged aroma chemical called ambroxan which has become the star (or scourge) of modern masculine perfumery. Taking its cues from the highly successful Bleu de Chanel (2010), Sauvage ups the ante and takes the sporty, shower gel meets deodorant fragrance concept to its logical conclusion. This one certainly smells good. It is fresh and clean and with a soapy metallic theme that projects through the air like a patriot missile with an ambroxan tip. 

After a while Sauvage gets a little annoying. The aroma is very monotone and doesn’t really have any charming idiosyncrasies. That’s the idea. There is nothing to offend anyone here and there is almost nothing that might be more to some tastes than others. Therein lies the reason for Sauvage’s success. It is arguably the best of the middle of the road, fresh smelling modern men’s fragrances. It is also a bit boring and doesn’t make any kind of statement about the wearer. It doesn’t transport you to a tropical beach or a smoky gentlemen’s club. It won’t remind you of a smell you remember from childhood and it won’t make you feel like an Arab prince. It just smells “nice”. There’s nothing wrong with that but if you are interested enough in fragrances to be reading this then you surely aspire to something more exciting. Sauvage is really well made and probably deserves at least 3 stars but I’m knocking one off for the fact that you’ll smell like any other Tom, Dick or Harry. Speaking of Dicks, the advertising features Johnny Depp.  (Dan)

We hope you enjoyed these 5 reviews. Look out for more news about the imminent book release on my YouTube channel MrSmelly1977 and on this website.

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