Review – Dolce & Gabbana – Velvet Cypress

Offering full transparency, my current role of supervisor in supply chain management continues to be physically and emotionally taxing. The complex universe of people management is a strenuous exercise in patience, empathy, and conflict resolution. In addition to standard family responsibilities, it feels that every facet of my life revolves around addressing a demand or providing resolution to a problem. Simply: I just need a day when I am not needed. That being stated, today I am directing my focus on a cologne that was slated for review during last Father’s Day, but product was not in stock for a gentleman’s assessment.

If you recall a few posts I wrote around that time, the theme centered around a gentleman pampering himself. Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Cypress is a perfect illustration of that point. Starting at a modest (well, perhaps not) $230.00, this is the most expensive cologne I have ever trialed for review. The latest from Dolce & Gabbana’s exclusive Velvet Collection (collection launched in 2011), Velvet Cypress promises a scent that pays homage to the late summer Italian countryside. Well, given my current challenges at work and home, I sincerely hope this is the case. Now, lets dive into the details.

Observations

Top Notes: Bergamot, Sicilian Lemon

Middle Notes: Galbanum, Clary Sage

Base Notes: Virginian Cedar Wood, Cypress Wood, Balsam Fir

  • Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Cypress arrives in a dense, rectangular flask with its top embossed with a smooth, circular velvet strip. A bronze nameplate adorns the front of the flask. The presentation exudes a simple, solid sophistication befitting of a gentleman that appreciates class and subtlety.
  • With a vibrant rush of bergamot and lemon, expect a welcoming committee of bitter and sweet citrus notes during the introductory phase of Velvet Cypress. It is a light, refreshing affair as the top scent isn’t overwhelmed by its citrus components.
  • The transition toward the middle notes is delicate, as the heart becomes ever so green with the presence of clary sage and galbanum. The experience is slightly earthy and warm. And consistent with its top note counterpart, the middle notes are neither obnoxious or unbearably strong.
  • The ending has a mellow dry-down with subtle hints of fresh spice. The woody aroma is fairly light. Truthfully, I thought the scent would be much heavier than I expected. My only complaint is I wish the fragrance was stronger. A gentleman will require approximately 8-10 sprays to enjoy the full benefits of Velvet Cypress. I would estimate a gentleman could extract 4-6 hours of performance before the scent begins fade.
  • Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Cypress is properly suited for daytime and early evening occasions. An easy-going, sophisticated scent with a moderate lifespan, business and business-casual settings are appropriate for a gentleman’s usage. Given the price-tag – as previously noted – save Velvet Cypress for those moments when you want to indulge in looking and feeling your best.
  • Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Cypress 1.7 fl. oz. $230.00, 5.0 fl. oz. $430.00,  – Available at Dolce & Gabbana, Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, and other fine men’s department stores

Review – Perry Ellis- Perry Ellis Red

Perry Ellis RedContinuing with our influx of Father’s Day recommendations for select fragrances, today, Perry Ellis Red is in the spotlight for review. In my experience, Perry Ellis offers casual, sporty fragrances properly suited for relaxed daytime performance. Now, Perry Ellis Red is billed as a fresh, masculine scent that reflects a gentleman’s fearless confidence and sexy sophistication. All that being stated, let’s get to the specifics and examine how Perry Ellis Red performs.

Observations

Top Notes: Juniper Berries, Italian Bergamot, Citrus

Middle Notes: Apple, Leather, Amber, Sichuan Pepper

Base Notes: Sage, Oakmoss, Sandalwood

  • Perry Ellis Red is a casual, standard scent that forgoes complexity and instead opts for a straightforward, aggressive burst of sweetness courtesy of juniper and citrus notes. Amber assists with lending more elements of sweetness with a soft, warm delivery. This theme continues through the heart of Perry Ellis Red before it finally settles into a natural, woodsy base.
  • The woody base is just as dominant as the top and middle notes; it really is a tale of two scents as each half is fully distinguished from the other. The conclusion is remarkably robust, so a gentleman should be lenient with his initial application.
  • Now, to reiterate, Perry Ellis Red starts strong and it ends stronger. If too much is applied, the top notes can be overwhelming, as pointed out by my wife. It’s projection is wide and far. I experimented with applications for a week, and concluded that 3-4 sprays was the sweet spot to hit without the scent becoming too obnoxious. Its life is significantly long. Traces of its scent will certainly be apparent at the end of a gentleman’s day.
  • The presentation is ordinary fare for a cologne flask with the exception of a red transparent, glass middle surrounded by the flask’s black body. It’s plain, but if you are not one that places a premium on appearance, this should not be an issue.
  • As with previous experiences, Perry Ellis Red proved to be well-suited for casual environments and daytime affairs. Lively and vigorous, a gentleman can trust Red to be trusted scent that won’t lose a spot in his rotation of cologne.
  • Perry Ellis Red 3.4 oz. $65.00 – Available at Perry Ellis, Macy’s, and other fine men’s department stores
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Burberry – Mr. Burberry

Mr BurberryThe month of June is but a few days away, and now is as good as time as any to contemplate what type of Father’s Day gift would be great for that special gentleman. Today, up for review, is the latest offering from Burberry – Mr. Burberry. Introduced in April 2016, Mr. Burberry is the gentleman’s alternative to My Burberry. Touted as sophisticated and contemporary, Mr. Burberry is the creation of a collaborative effort between Chief Creative & Chief Executive Officer Christopher Bailey and perfumer Francis Kurkdjian. Moody and dark with a prominent presence of wood and spice, the custom monogramming is an elegant finishing touch to complete the package. Now, let’s dive into the details

Observations

Top notes: Tarragon, Grapefruit, Cardamom

Middle Notes: Cedar, Birch Leaf, Nutmeg

Base Notes: Sandalwood, Guaiac Wood, Vetiver

  • The introductory period with Mr. Burberry is a promising affair, sweet notes of grapefruit tempered by hints of nuanced bitter ones. Soon, the sweetness prevails, albeit briefly, before Mr. Burberry settles into an earthy feel that extends from the heart to the base. My sole complaint: I wish the top note lasted a little longer. This scent is properly suited for evening events.
  • Mr. Burberry can be characterized as earnest and brooding. Composed mostly of wood and spice, this is a serious fragrance suited for the professional gentleman. It does not project very far, however, it does display a concentrated intensity within a short-range. Therefore, don’t allow yourself to be influenced by the seemingly inhibited nature because it can pack a punch if applied liberally. You’ll overwhelm yourself and your immediate company.
  • The warm dry-down enjoys an extended longevity; the woody base will not abandon a gentleman for sure. The ending could benefit from the addition of a citrus or flower companion to contribute a bright contrast to the moody finale, but some gentlemen may be fine with how Mr. Burberry concludes.
  • The presentation is clean and elegant, drawing inspiration from the iconic black Burberry trench coat. Housed in blackish-grey, dense glass; Mr. Burberry is topped off (literally) by a weighted cap in reference to horn-look buttons and a hand-knotted sliver of black gabardine around the throat. It really is a handsome bottle to present on Father’s Day.
  • Mr. Burberry 30 ml ($55), 50 ml($68), 100 ml ($88), 150 ml ($115) – complimentary monogramming up to three initials at Burberry.com and select Burberry stores.
  • Available at Burberry, Nordstrom, Sephora, and other fine men’s department stores.
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Vince Camuto – Eterno

Vince Camuto EternoAside from a few intermittent episodes of cool temperatures as a coy reminder of winter, spring has stubbornly arrived, and a gentleman can start considering a fresh, new fragrance to welcome the season in properly. Combined with Father’s Day – fast approaching – it is certainly the perfect time for a gentleman to perform an inventory of his cologne stock and afford thoughtful deliberation regarding such an acquisition. Well, The Gentlemen’s Standard is here to assuage any worrisome, moral dilemmas one may encounter – a gentleman’s scent is serious business. Collaborating again with our friends representing Vince Camuto; its newest offering Eterno is the fourth Camuto fragrance to be offered since 2012. Past encounters with Vince Camuto fragrances have been pleasant, so the promise of sampling another beautiful fragrance is great. Now let’s see if Eterno continues the tradition.

Observations

Top Notes: Citrus, Mint

Middle Notes: Cedar Wood, Patchouli

Base Notes: Saffron, Bourbon

  • Vince Camuto Eterno commences with a warm open that exhibits remarkable restraint during its introduction. Subdued traces of citrus and mint are light and springy with an even temperament that does not overwhelm the senses.
  • The middle and base notes are deep with a strong woodsy flavor with mellow hints of spice. A gentleman can be generous with his application of Eterno without worry of offending individuals around him. Again, the overall scent is smooth and defined, as none of the notes are particularly overbearing.
  • Now, given its quiet demeanor, Eterno may be susceptible to fading into the background as a gentleman’s day progresses. Exhibiting a moderate staying power, the scent itself can get drowned out by fragrant, environmental noise. Eterno sticks with you, but only a person close enough to you will be able to appreciate its concluding notes.
  • Vince Camuto Eterno is presented once again with its signature, rectangular glass bottle, but only this time in a white version. Reminiscent of a flask, the glass bottle is encased with a white leather composite with accompanying logo embossment.
  • A gentleman will be served best when Eterno is worn during intimate affairs where the proximity of human contact is relatively small. Eterno is fresh – absent busy notes that can overwhelm and confuse. The transition between notes is clean and deliberate without any of stages overpowering the other. Eterno is definitely made for the gentleman with a relaxed lifestyle where a soft, masculine scent can be appreciated up close and personal.
  • Vince Camuto Eterno  3.4 oz $75.00 – Available at Vince Camuto, Macy’s, Dillard’s or any fine men’s department store.
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. Item was purchased for personal use. The opinions expressed are completely my own based on my experience.

Review – Vince Camuto – Solare

Vince Camuto SolareWell, it is certainly that time of the year. It is that time of year when spring is well underway, summer is right around the corner, and Father’s Day is on the horizon. Therefore, this perfect storm of events have given rise to a prominent influx of grooming review requests from my friendly public relations connections. This month has been especially busy, as two unexpected trips to the emergency room with my daughter, all within a 2 week span, have accelerated the rate of gray hairs growing in my beard. Alas, the life of a parent. Nevertheless, between trips to Beaumont and still fulfilling my employment duties at Trinity Health, I was able to carve out some much-required time to shower, groom, and test products. And thus, let the reviews begin! Today, we are placing Vince Camuto Solare under the examination light. Launched this year as a follow-up to Vince Camuto Homme – which I enjoyed immensely – Solare arrives with the promise of introducing creativity and vitality into a gentleman’s grooming lifestyle. Let’s see if it delivers on that promise.

Observations

Top Notes: French Lavender, Juicy Mandarin, Red Apple

Middle Notes: Cardamom, Wild Sage, Pimento Leaves

Base Notes: Sensual Musk, Tonka Leaves, Cashmere Woods, Creamy Blonde Woods

  • Vince Camuto Solare swiftly commences with a sharp burst of citrus that is unabashedly sweet and fresh. The notes of sweetness endure for a surprisingly extended length of time before finally settling down into the middle portion. Fleeting hints of apple will be the last distinct note you will be able to discern before the top notes are finished.
  • Now the middle section of Solare shares the same sweetness as the introduction, but not as sharply defined. Its temperament is slow and steady. Nevertheless, the tandem of the top and middle notes work in concert to comprise a majority of the scent’s dominant smell.
  • Given its sweet nature, Solare appears slightly fade over the course of the day. And given that fact, a gentleman can be seduced by the thought of dispersing additional applications – please don’t. Solare will adhere to your clothing far longer than it will to you. Therefore, I recommend addressing your pulse points – the neck and wrists – with a spritz of 4-6 hits. Depending on your body chemistry, a gentleman could perhaps apply a little more. I would steer clear of spraying your body unless you don’t mind the scent sticking to your clothing.
  • Now, as sweet as the top and middle notes were, the bottom notes carried the same theme, but with darker undertones. There is a faint woody flavor present, but not really overt. And if a gentleman decides to bathe himself in Solare – as I previously warned against – those undertones will be overwhelming and haunt you – and your clothing – for the rest of the day.
  • Vince Camuto Solare is best suited for light casual affairs where a gentleman might find himself around a pool or body of water. The atmosphere should be as clean as possible, as heavy scents, such as the smoke from a barbeque grill, will surely overpower Solare. Solare is a fun fragrance; energetic, yet sublimely subtle.
  • Vince Camuto Solare 3.4 oz $70.00 – Available at Vince Camuto, Macy’s,Von Maur or any fine men’s department store.
Gentlemen’s Standard Approved
 

Review – Lacoste – Lacoste L!ve

Lacoste L!veOnce again, I have the distinct pleasure of reviewing a new offering from the Lacoste brand – Lacoste L!ve. Launched in July 2014, Lacoste L!ve promises to deliver a fragrance that embodies an irresistible energy that bustles with creativity and uniqueness. Housed within a six-sided, multicolored cube; the modern design is intended to compel the user to step aside, step back, and see life from a different angle. Now, before I humbly submit my opinion regarding Lacoste L!ve, I must first state that the flacon’s presentation belies its fragrant composition. Sure, the design appears to be playful and jaunty, but the scent is actually more serious than one might anticipate. So, with that bit of information on the record, let’s dive into details shall we?

Observations

Top Notes: Lime, Saffron

Middle Notes: Green leaves, Aquatic accord

Base Notes: Guaiac wood, Sandalwood, Dark licorice

The top and middle notes are very light and gentle in nature, as they seamlessly transition, almost unnoticeable, from the top note to the middle note. The lime is the most distinct scent during this introduction, as the citrus stands out without being too overbearing. The base note is definitely the strongest as it arrives at its destination swiftly and remains anchored to the wearer for a good portion of the day. The hints of wood are very pleasant, although I do solemnly swear that subtle notes of cinnamon are tucked away in there as a surprise note. I could be mistaken, and it is simply my body chemistry working in tandem with the base notes to produce the sweet notes of cinnamon. Nonetheless, the results are most welcome. As previously mentioned, the overall scent is more sophisticated than the bottle might lead you to believe. Lacoste L!ve would probably work best during the afternoon and evening times. It is very understated, so one can be liberal with the application – test and gauge what best works for you. If you are in the market for a new summer cologne, Lacoste L!ve deserves your perusal.

Lacoste L!ve 40 ml $42.00 and 100 ml $69.00 – recommended retail price at Macy’s, Dillards, Kohl’s, Sephora, Lacoste boutiques, and http://www.lacoste.com/

Gentlemen’s Standard Approved

Disclosure: TGS was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample for review purposes only. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

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