There are a lot of perfume merchants on eBay who offer their own perfume blends for very low prices. I'm sure some of them are crap, since we're not talking about world-renown perfumers here, but I can say from experience that some of them are very good. I've been buying a bunch of patchouli-based fragrances recently from some of these merchants on eBay, so I can speak from recent experience. Aside from the fact that I love patchouli, I was really turned on by their ridiculously low prices.
Patchouli Perfume by Selene Perfumes, a company based in Miami, Florida, was one of my recent purchases. It comes in a 1 oz. splash bottle, and only cost me $3.99. It's far from the best patchouli scent I've ever tried, but for that price, I can't complain.
First, the positive: the smell. I'm going to assume that at $3.99, there isn't much more than patchouli oil and perfumer's alcohol in this. However, this smells more complex than just straight patchouli. The patchouli is of course front and center - with the requisite peppery smell so common in "hippie" patchouli - but I also detect a subtle mossiness and a slight caramellic note in this. Quite frankly, the smell reminds me of Annick Goutal's discontinued Eau de Monsieur, though it's not exactly the same. It's a really good scent, and I find that it smells more like a man's fragrance than a feminine scent. I like the smell a lot.
Now for the negative: it's much too weak for my tastes. Unfortunately I can only smell this on myself for an hour or two, then the scent just about disappears. I can only smell it if I drill my nose into my hand after wearing it for a couple of hours. It also does not project strongly at all; it's purely a skin scent.
For $3.99 a pop, I say go for it. The stuff smells really good, and if you like patchouli, you will like this. Besides, maybe its lack of strength is due more to my own sense of smell or my own skin. You might find it to be stronger, I don't know. Plus, if you prefer really discreet perfumes, then this may be perfect for you. It's just way too watered down for my tastes.
MY RATING: 7/10
Fragrance House: Selene Perfumes