Voyage (Nautica)

And now, on to an example of a "bad" aquatic. How do I say this nicely ... Nautica Voyage smells like the olfactory equivalent of an off-Broadway showing of Antony and Cleopatra; the fragrance is monotonous, loud, tacky, and totally off-key. Okay, that wasn't said nicely. But it pains me to think that the same man responsible for K de Krizia and Iris Silver Gris produced such a horrendous designer scent.

The problem is mostly a matter of volume. As it exits the atomizer and hits the skin, Voyage explodes with a thunderous combination of ozonics and fruity musks. These remain blaringly loud for the first hour of wear, with only minimal settling. Eventually the fruit burns off entirely, leaving nothing more than a dull chemical spill, comprised mostly of white musk and calone residue. It's neither pleasant, attractive, or refined. Voyage is, to be fair, an aquatic scent, and it does successfully reference a wild oceanic wind. Unfortunately, there's not a whit of subtlety to its composition, nor any interest invested in its balance, and the result is something that could have been great, but ends up smelling juvenile and crude.

Every great perfumer is given his or her share of turkeys, and no doubt Maurice Roucel wanted to do more with better materials, but was simply too limited by Nautica's budget constraints. Another cynical aquatic fragrance is what we're left with. It should be noted that I have a considerable little collection of fragrances in my wardrobe, and a girlfriend who is stoically tolerant of all of them. However, when she smelled the test spritz of Voyage on me, her nose wrinkled up, and something akin to a gag reflex crossed her face. It was a long drive home from the drugstore.

Guys (and gals), do your significant other a big favor, and don't pretend that this is a sexy fragrance. If it has to be wet and "fresh," go with Horizon or Cool Water instead.


  1. Oh, this just sounds dreadful. I don't tend to like even good aquatic scents, so I will certainly pass on the bad ones. The phrase (no doubt apt) "fruity musks" actually turned my stomach. :)

  2. Yes, it's like spilling laundry detergent on your arm, and then sniffing it's "bouquet." It's utter insanity in a bottle, which is justifiably as drab as the scent itself. Why do these things get made, I ask you? Why????

  3. Yes, Voyage is insanely atrocious. I hate aquatics, and this is the worst of them. The laundry detergent comparison is right on.

  4. Aquatics are tough to stomach, sometimes even in their best form. I've had moments where I thought an aquatic "spoke" to me, but then realized that the scent wasn't truly an aquatic (Horizon comes to mind), but rather a fougere or an herbal aromatic with aquatic elements. The stuff that tries to be purely aquatic - like Voyage - ends up smelling like utter crap. Dunno if there's any way to smell like water without smelling like a joke, but I'm sure there's a rare specimen out there somewhere.


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