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Venture to the Tropics: Mancera’s Sicily

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While I respect the house for its fabulous balance of quality and price, Mancera is a brand that is, in most cases, not for me. To my taste, many of their fragrances are far too heavy on the oud and synthetics, or tend to produce hairspray-like aromas. Along with the popular Cedrat Boise, Mancera’s Sicily is a notable exception.

Some have heralded Sicily as some sort of newfangled Aventus clone, but that description would have nothing to do with the actual fragrance. Sicily has pineapples, yes, but that note is presented differently, is placed alongside a prominent peach note, and comes across as far more unisex, tropical, and soft than Aventus. It’s not a distinctly masculine fragrance like Cedrat Boise, which has a similarly fruity/woody vibe. Departing from the dark woods/fruits of Aventus and Cedrat Boise, Sicily is brighter, fresher, far more citrusy and floral, and yields an inescapably summery aroma that would feel woefully out of place in the cold darkness of winter. KEEP ON READING

Maison Francis Kurkdijan Oud: SmoOooooouuuud

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I admit to feeling slightly aggrieved. How is it possible that nobody told me about this wonderful perfume before? Or, as is more likely, did someone tell me and did I immediately file it away under the general category of Just Another Oud?

I’m used to the full range of synthetic oud accords used in most Western style perfumery, including the medicinal, alcoholic burps of oud used by Montale, the smoked wood feel of the stuff used in the Dior Privee and Guerlain Deserts lines, and the sometimes oily, acrid approximations used by everyone else from Mancera to Tiziana Terenzi. I enjoy and own a number of these renditions. But I admit that I do have to be in the mood for the coarse honk of synthetic oud. It is a particularly brutalizing kind of note. KEEP ON READING

Mancera – Gold Intensive Aoud

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Mancera--Gold-Intensive-Aoud--EdPI had a wonderful companion this Boxing Day. It was going to be a so-called “warm summer’s day” for Perth, 32 degrees, so no reason yet to pull out the heat-wave fragrances. I decided to use my new bottle of Gold Intensive Aoud by Mancera.

I cannot say much to compare GIA to all the other oud fragrances on the market – my nose is too un-trained for that. What I can say though is that it’s a wonderful fragrance. The combination with fresh lemon and rose notes keeps the heavy wood part from being too dark and heavy. There is no sharpness or abrupt change between the lighter and heavier notes, this is a very well balanced perfume. KEEP ON READING

Do You Do Dupes?

in Reviews/Thoughts by

I do dupes. Do you?

You know the feeling. You have a sample of a perfume that takes your breath away. You want to snuggle into its warm embrace for the rest of your days. And then you take a look at the price tag. Erm, no. What am I, a human cash dispenser? If you’re anything like me, you go to Fragrantica and immediately look at what got the most votes for “this perfume reminds me of….”. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll chance blind buying a cheaper alternative if enough people says it smells just like your favorite. KEEP ON READING

An extra dose of freshness: Lemon Lime and Wind Wood from the house Mancera

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Lemon Line and Wind Wood - The New Mancera Fragrances
Lemon Line and Wind Wood – The New Mancera Fragrances

These two new babies from Mancera were launched just in time to provide us a cool breeze in the summer heat. Packed in the same neat and elegant 120 ml bottles as the rest of the line, they are a real pleasure for the eyes too, but especially for the nose. Both are refreshing and totally different from one another.

Lemon Lime starts with an isolated and accurate note of lemon that is ripe and zesty, as if you squeeze the fruit direct into your mouth. I can smell a good natural essence here, totally true to the scent of the fruit. You remember how nice your fingers smell when you squash lemons to make a lemonade? Lemon Lime begins exactley like this, stimulating your senses and uplifting your mood, but it does not stop here, just offering an interpretation of a lemonade, because it recives also aspects of a true complex scent with a slightly classic facet attached to it by introducing notes such as lavender and moss. The aromatic lemonish-green note is gentle covered by this soapy tone continuing to remain fresh, but now is also elegant, more elaborate and sophisticated and has much more bones. From this stage the fragrance does not bring new elements, leaving the sharp-soapy combo play untill the end. The effervescent top notes recall somehow the citrusy opening of Tom Ford`s Azure Lime, but where that one adds in time a significant dried wood tone as a couterpart for the crisp lime, Mancera Lemon Lime is rounded by the soapy-clean molecules which in my opinion succesfully mantain the overall freshness of the composition. Best part is that on contrary to many other citrus based fragrances, Lemon Lime is long lasting with a far from shy sillage – this unisex citrus bomb will announce your enter and exit from a room for sure, being a great option for easy outfits in hot summer days. On the other hand Wind Wood is like a morning stroll in the absolute stillness of a foggy dark wood, when the soil is moist and the chilly breeze smells of conifers and leaves. The tiny violets covered with dew drops will acompany your steps into the heart of the forest, where you`ll find yourself in a bright glade warmed by the sun. Here, in the middle part, the scent reaches a subtle fruity note that adds a bit of sweetness just as much as necessary to round the harsh edges of the woody notes. Now the slightly bitter vetiver and pine resins are surrounded by a pleasant succulent tone, and the ambery dry down touched by the luminous vetiver is a real treat. Although Wind Wood is listed as a leather fragrance, I cannot detect much leather in it, just a more then subtle undertone that never comes in front. The scent has power and unfolds itself pretty slow on skin, so you`ll be able to enjoy every single stage properly and in my opinion it is more on the men`s side of unisex. Overall, Wind Wood is a great chiaroscuro woody-green scent with innovative accords that you can wear all year round.

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