Most people describe 1-12 as an intensely green scent, but I only partially agree with that. The opening is certainly green smelling, with an awesome blast of citrus, herbs and galbanum, which give off a scent of lemony green grass, or crushed flower stems. This is a superb opening! However, pretty soon 1-12 develops a more floral smell (there’s lavender, carnation and jasmine in 1-12) than a green one. It doesn’t lose its greenness, thankfully, but I find it to be just as floral as it is green.
The one ingredient in 1-12 that nails down the green smell is labdanum. Labdanum is a resinous material that has a complex smell that is green, tangy, resinous and somewhat oily. It makes a great base note in a fragrance if you love green smells because it lasts a long time. In 1-12, I can smell it from the minute I first spray it on – it contributes to that green flower stem smell – to the very end. The final stages of the scent are semi-sweet because of dabs of vanilla and amber in the base. However, the labdanum is what prevents 1-12 from being heavy and overly sweet. It gives the scent a slightly powdery green smell, which I really like. I think I’d hate the final stages of 1-12 if it weren’t for the labdanum; I don’t like vanilla or amber.
I find 1-12 to be an extremely smooth scent. One reason I bought a bottle of this was because pine is listed as an ingredient. I don’t smell any pine or any other coniferous tree smells in this, unfortunately. Halston 1-12 is a smooth green scent, not a woody, coniferous one.
In light of today’s fragrance fashion, 1-12 is a challenging, even rebellious, fragrance. It smells nothing like anything on the designer or niche perfume market. Green herbal scents were popular back in the 70s, but they are far from being the rage right now. I think 1-12 is a very masculine scent, but it could also make a great women’s scent as well. It smells old-school by today’s standards, and that’s perfectly fine with me. You just won’t smell like every other Joe Shmoe out on the street rocking Acqua di Gio.
MY RATING: 8/10
Fragrance House: Halston