Friday, February 8, 2013

Man.Aubusson Intense

I bought this fragrance without trying it first. I remember rushing back to my car after paying for it, dying to try it out. I sprayed some on the back of my hand, and my heart sunk. It smelled like a typical trendy sweet, woody, purple metallic thing, like Ed Hardy or other shit like that. I thought it sucked.

Fortunately I do take my personal policy of "wear it all day before you judge it" seriously when it comes to reviewing fragrances, and I'm glad I did with this one. Man.Aubusson Intense is excellent. It certainly qualifies as a sweet woody spicy oriental (my least favorite genre), and it would probably smell right at home in a nightclub or at a college party, but its composition is what lifts it above most trendy fragrances.

The generic wimpy, metallic citrus in the opening does little for me, though there's a nice sweet coffee note in there that makes it pretty enjoyable. What I really like about Man.Aubusson Intense is the way it evolves: it starts off like sweet mocha, then slowly but surely a warm, rich leather note comes to the fore, and the scent takes on a much more masculine feel. I've never seen a list of notes for this fragrance, but it sure smells like leather to me - a sweet leather note, but still leather and very good.

The drydown is especially satisfying. By then the irritating metal notes are long gone, and you're left with this beautiful coffee, amber and leather accord, where all three notes blend in perfect balance. It's smooth and heart-warming, yet totally masculine, even refined. It smells a lot like the incredible drydown in Rochas Man. It's sweet, but its excellent sense of balance prevents it from being overbearingly so.

Man.Aubusson Intense may not be unique (it does smell similar to Rochas Man and Michael Jordan Legend), but it's a very good scent that should appeal to guys like me who are over 40 just as much as younger guys. It manages to combine youthful sweetness with classic leathery richness perfectly, which is not an easy feat.


Fragrance House: Aubusson


  1. Since you like many "cheapos" as well as Legend/Rochas man scents, I'll mention Cotton Club for Men. You may not need it if you have one of the others but I was surprised at how good it was, as you said, if you wait for the drydown. The interesting question is, how many scents smell like this? There are so many "clones"/"knockoffs" out there!

    1. You are definitely right - there are SO many fragrances that smell similar to this, and I hardly need any more in my wardrobe. The problem is that most of them aren't composed very well. When I find one like Rochas, Legend or this one that's really well done, I can enjoy it. I typically don't like most sweet fragrances, but when they're really well composed, I can enjoy them most of the time.

      I think I can enjoy any type of fragrance, even aquatics, if they're well composed.

  2. Hi shamu, I also bought this blind and wondered how it compares to the original man.aubusson. Have you tried the original? BTW I have an unsophisticated nose, but the top notes remind me of Samba Kiss Me.

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