Biehl Parfumkunstwerke gs03

Another sampler from Jeffrey Dame at Hypoluxe. I wasn’t sure what I was expecting after gs02, though I was pleasantly surprised when I tried out gs03!

gs03

gs03

In Bottle: Nice, soft white florals with an layer of woods.

Applied: Slight citrus kick on spray but quick to dissipate as it’s replaced with a smooth white floral fragrance with an under layer of woods to back it up. The opening is fabulous. Very airy white florals, a slight spice to tie it together. It’s mid-stage is marked with a more prominent woodsy showing with those white florals layered on top. The dry down sees a smoother wood note, less florals and more soft warmth from a vetiver with a mild return of the citrus that disappeared in the top layer. This reminds me of laundry or very nice soap. And something in it also reminds me of something my mother used to wear. Nice, lovely and soft.

Extra: gs03 is a new launch from biehl parfumkunstwerke targeted both men and women. It was composed by by Geza Schoen, like gs02.

Design: A similar minimalist bottle design as gs02. Nothing flashy or outrageous. After having seen some of the latest celebuscent bottle designs, I appreciate simplicity like this a lot.

Fragrance Family: Floral Woodsy

Notes: Mandarin, orange blossom, neroli, pepper, juniper, rose, jasmine, iris, cedar, vetiver, castoreum, oakmoss, benzoin, tonka bean, musk.

Very nice, though a couple of times during the midstage I got a little worried about the cedar. That note doesn’t behave for me, but it did fine in gs03 as it was light and well done in this fragrance. Overall very nice and I prefer it over gs02 for its softness.

Reviewed in This Post: gs03, 2013, Eau de Parfum.


Biehl Parfumkunstwerke gs02

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.

gs02

gs02

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.


Illuminum Rose Oud

It’s been a while since I tried a fragrance with oud in it. And just about as long since I tried a rose centered scent. So I picked Rose Oud pretty much out of the blue and was pleasantly surprised.

Rose Oud

Rose Oud

In Bottle: Smells very familiar to me. It’s clean, fresh and simple and plucks at some memory that starts forming the longer I wear it.

Applied: Rose Oud is decidedly less rosey and oudy than I thought it would be. The rose is there. I’m not sure I can say the same for the oud, but the rest of the fragrance carries it forward. The instant I put it on, I’m reminded of something, but it settles on the tip of my brain and doesn’t let me progress much further until I let the fragrance settle down a bit more. As Rose Oud continues its progression, the rose makes its way to the forefront, dominating the scent and leading a pack of fresh florals, most notably the lily of the valley that gives the fragrance it’s soft feel. I’m waiting for the oud and find myself waiting a while as it never really makes itself known. Rose Oud smells more of roses from afar and more of roses and florals up close. For those worried about the castoreum, don’t be. I never got much in the way of it as the fragrance remained largely clean, fresh and floral. I quite like Rose Oud. It might actually be my top pick of the Illuminums so far and it’s mainly because of the memories it teases up for me.

Extra: Castoreum is, ready for this? The secretions from the scent glands of beavers. And of course, as with all these animal sourced notes, the scent glands are located on the animal’s rear. But, don’t worry, castoreum is derived from these secretions after they’ve been put through all sorts of processes. By the time it gets to be an ingredient, you end up with a leather-like fragrance. If you enjoyed Shalimar, you’re smelling more castoreum than I did in Rose Oud.

Design: Rose Oud is bottled and packaged much the same way as the other Illuminum fragrances. Held in a squat and square frosted glass bottle with a brushed metal cap.

Fragrance Family: Floral

Notes: Basil, coriander, jasmine, lily of the valley, rose, geranium, oud, castoreum, patchouli.

While I was disappointed when the oud didn’t show up when I was searching for it, I finally realized why Rose Oud smelled familiar to me. It takes me back to 1990. I’m a child and my aunt is hugging me one last time before my parents put me in the taxi. I won’t see her again until 1992 and it made me sad. Two years isn’t that long for an adult, but it was ages for a child. The smell of roses and soap were wafting around at the time, partially from someone’s perfume and partially from the laundry soap that permeated through our luggage. I remember more precisely how dark it was because we were up at the break of dawn. Not much of a happy memory, but still a precious one.

Reviewed in This Post: Rose Oud, 2012, Eau de Parfum.

Disclaimer: The fragrance reviewed in this post was provided to me for free for the purposes of review. In no other way am I receiving pay or compensation for this review. This review was written based upon my personal experiences and opinions of the product.


Knize Ten

Picked up this classic out of the pile today. I had heard of Knize Ten on various fragrance boards and saw it had a lot of love and praise so I was very excited to see how I’d react to it.

Knize Ten

Knize Ten

In Bottle: Strong leather up top with a mixture of notes that reminds me of motor oil or rubber. I know my fiance, whose love of things that smell like car garages would love this.

Applied: Once again a very heavy leather note up top with a few notes that remind me of rubber or motor oil. Just something really heavy and mechanical. This makes me think ‘masculine’ right away as it has a very strong initial personality. If you keep wearing Knize Ten it mellows out a bit, turning into a soft, plush leather fragrance with a hint of floral to back it up. It’s rich, sophisticated and very complex as all classics tend to be. I love it, but I would probably love it more on a man than myself because I can’t see myself rocking this with the same kind of style due to my penchant for lighter fragrances. Anyway, Knize Ten develops into this fabulous comforting leather. The kind of warm, plus leather you can wrap yourself in. The ‘motor oil’ fades so if you were concerned about that aspect, it did fade for me. Also keep in mind that it is hard to pin point exactly what Knize Ten is aside from a really, really good leather. It’s constantly evolving but remains a very nice comforting, luxurious fragrance. The dry down is marked with a warm amber quality and a hint of balancing patchouli.

Extra: Knize Ten is a classic fragrance from the 1920s and it smells like it too. It’s complex and unlike most modern men’s scents in that it has a fabulous balance of notes. It was composed by Fran├žois Coty and Vincent Roubert.

Design: Fairly simple design choice for this fragrance but it’s a quality-looking fragrance bottle made of quality materials. Feels nice in the hand, has a good weight to it, isn’t awkward to hold or spray and looks simple and tasteful. Overall, a nicely done design.

Fragrance Family: Classic

Notes: Lemon, bergamot, orange, petitgrain, rosemary, geranium, rose, cedar, orris, carnation, cinnamon, orange blossom, sandalwood, leather, musk, moss, patchouli, ambergris, castoreum, vanilla.

Knize Ten is beautiful. I just can’t see myself wearing it, but I can definitely see a man with this fragrance. It’s warm, comforting, and sophisticated at the same time. Not to mention it’s a classic which almost always wins extra points. I’m just not sure how old my sample is.

Reviewed in This Post: Knize Ten, ~2000, Eau de Toilette.