I will admit that I was initially drawn to gs02 and the other scents in the latest release from biehl parfumkunstwerke because I was getting tired of picking scents based on their names. The letter and number combo lent some anonymity to the fragrance and made it seem like whatever I’d get, I wouldn’t be influenced by the name chosen by the house. What could get more anonymous than a scent called gs02? So having had no prior knowledge of the scent, no idea what notes were in it and only a write-up by Jeffrey Dame of Hypoluxe and a sample card to go with, I dove in.
In Bottle: Sharp and cool, refreshing, especially after walking around outside. Clean, too with a light floral impression on top of a bed of herbs.
Applied: Cool application, somewhat sharp. I get a slight hint of woods, like a slightly smoky wood. gs02 evolves into a smooth light floral with a touch of spice and woods. The longer this wears, the more I get the impression of something darker, like a leather trying to peek around the corner of some trees. The drydown has a smoother woodsy interpretation with less spice, no florals and that elusive leather is no where to be seen. Everything is generally softer on the dry down though very much present. It’s clean overall, fresh on the open, woodsy and supple in the midstage and soft on the dry down.
Extra: This one is a full on niche from biehl parfumkunstwerke and composed by Geza Schoen, the nose behind Clive Christian’s 1872 and other fabulous scents like Eccentric 02 from Eccentric Molecules.
Design: Minimalist bottle design, which for a series of fragrances like this lends towards the luxury and concept rather than takes away from it. These bottles fall into the aesthetic category of, “line them up in a row and stare at them all day”.
Fragrance Family: Woodsy
Notes: Orange, wormwood, angelica, thyme, spices, leather, castoreum, amber, tonka bean, vanilla.
There’s something to be said for the clean, crisp, sharp impression of gs02, though some consider it polarizing. I’ve seen reactions where people said it smelled like body wash. And having used my husband’s body shower now and then, I can attest that the association is definitely there. But gs02 has an understated, underlying complexity that you just can’t get out of a bottle of Nivea.
Reviewed in This Post: gs02, 2013, Eau de Parfum.
Nice review Kay, you captured the essence of biehl gs02 perfectly and the aesthetic of the collection. Biehl gs02 is the favorite of Thorsten Biehl in the “biehl gallery of parfums”, and I myself have been wearing it all summer, going back and forth between the new gs03 and the spicier gs02.
Thanks! I’m planning on reviewing gs03 or mb03 next. 😀
I’ve tried just one perfume from this line and all I remember is that it was OK. I had to look it up in my database because I had no recollection whatsoever what two letters and what number were used to label it. And I think it’s a flaw of the line and not a benefit. Since I do not blind buy any perfumes, no matter how clever the name is or how beautiful I find the bettle to be. So I prefer brands that do spend time and money trying to wow me with those names and bottles.
Having said that, I won’t refuse to try this (or any other brand’s perfumes) just because of these names or bottles and if I like any of them I won’t hesitate to add them to my collection. But I might never try them – just because there are so many other perfumes with better memorable names and cuter bottles that I definitely won’t spend any money on chasing these samples. And I suspect that I’m not the only one who’s that “shallow.”
It’s often a matter of what feels “just right” and personally clicks in design. It is not unusual for me to hear from a parfumerie or boutique owner that the Parfums Micallef designs such as the recent Denis Durand Parfum Couture for Micallef are too opulent and over the top – and that they prefer the minimalist designs such as biehl, and then the next conversation I’ll have another store buyer will find the Micallef designs simply lovely and to be treasured but the biehl designs too modern. The store buyer uses their own personal taste as they should, and must buy for the parfumerie’s existing clientele, but if a store stocks only brands of one direction are the other potential customers of the alternate taste not finding what they like? Best to have both in store and let the user decide.
I completely agree with you if to look at it from a store owner prospective. One of the reasons why I wouldn’t be a good retailer in any field – perfumes, books, music, clothes, etc. – is that it would hard for me to offer to others what doesn’t work for me and I know for a fact that my tastes are not only very limited and specific but also very eclectic so it would be hard to find even a niche/subsegment of the market for that.
Anyway, what I’m trying to say: Biehl’s esthetic should definitely be appealing to many people so if the perfumes are good bottles and names won’t be holding the brand back.
I think what helps make a fragrance memorable to me is if I like how it smells. If I like it enough, they could name it “Armpit Stink” and I’d still buy it. I have to admit, though, a fragrance called Armpit Stink would be pretty funny.
Pingback: gs02 by biehl parfumkunstwerke | The Scented Hound